jamie goode's wine blog: A mountain white and three Pinots

Friday, March 14, 2008

A mountain white and three Pinots

It's been a nice day here at the Goode residence, as I end week two of my freelance life. I confess: Fiona and I took another long Friday lunch together. This time we went to Richmond and ate at Wagamama, which I think I'm slightly addicted to. We both ordered no. 42 - yaki udon (7.25) which consists of: teppan-fried udon noodles with curry oil, shiitake mushrooms,
egg, leeks, prawns, chicken, chikuwa, beansprouts and green and red peppers, garnished with spicy ground fish powder, mixed sesame seeds, fried shallots and pickled ginger. It's fantastic. I had a beer and Fiona had a glass of Chilean Sauvignon.

Tonight, three Pinots (what a fickle grape) and a mountain white. Tomorrow I'm going to Twickenham for the rugby.

Blanc de Morgex et de la Salle 2006 Vallee d'Aoste, Italy
From the Cave du Vin in Morgex, this is a pure, fresh mountain wine that's part of the Vini Estremi group (http://www.viniestremi.com/). Weighing in at just 11.5% alcohol, it's delicate and minerally with a subtle apple and herb flavour and high acidity. There's a lovely bright savouriness to it: remarkably refreshing stuff. I do like mountain wines. 88/100 (Les Caves de Pyrene)

Parducci Pinot Noir 2006 California
Mendocino-based Parducci are these days riding the sustainability wagon (I haven't used the perjorative term 'bandwagon' here) - see www.parducci.com/sustainability. I remember Oddbins used to stock a Parducci Charbono a few years back; now they are stocking this Pinot Noir. By Californian standards this is an inexpensive wine, and it certainly tastes like Pinot, although at this price point it's facing strong competition from the cheaper NZ Pinots. The nose is quite sweet, with bright berry and cherry fruit, but there's also a savoury green herbal streak. The nicely balanced palate has a bit of this sweet and savoury thing going on, with sweet berry fruit countered by a spicy herby savouriness. It's not quite elegant enough to be a must buy, but it's certainly acceptable at this price, and avoids being confected and forced. Reminds me a bit of the Cono Sur Pinot. 86/100 (8.49 Oddbins)

Domaine Mas Viel Pinot Noir 2006 Vin de Pays d'Oc, France
Sealed with ProCork, a natural cork with a special membrane attached to each chamfered end, to prevent any risk of TCA transmission from the cork to the wine: I haven't seen many of these around. It has a ripe, forward sweet berry fruit nose that's richer than you'd expect from Pinot. Quite dense on the palate with some firm tannins, ripe fruit and a herby tang, together with some sweet vanilla oak notes. It's attractive, in a flirty sort of way, but this doesn't really taste like Pinot. Still, it's quite cheap, and I suspect that if it was from Chile or California, it would have its fans. 81/100 (6.95 http://www.therealwineco.co.uk/)

Blason de Bourgogne Mercurey 2003 Burgundy
This is bright and quite tart, displaying cherry and raspberry fruit with some stern, savoury earthy undercurrents. It's lean, a bit acidic, and ungenerous. There's also a rustic herbal streak. It was just a shade under 10 from Tesco and Asda a couple of years ago, and I think it was a bit overpriced. It would work well as a food wine, I suspect, but it's a bit severe on its own. 80/100

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At 1:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now I know why you asked me to recommend a Richmond restaurant!!
Not a Wagamana fan myself but the missus and grandkids are,so I tend to go quite often!!
You must try that small floating restaurant,I mentioned just past Richmond Bridge and before Gaucho.
Decent food and BYO at 5 quid!! Thats what I like---bugger the food

At 1:28 PM, Anonymous keith prothero said...

Funny I put my name in and I am anonymous--shall try again

At 6:24 PM, Anonymous Alex Lake said...

Ah there you go - some chains have a place in modern living... ;-)

I find it hard to stray from Chicken Katsu, but will perhaps try that one sometime. I also like their raw juice. The children quite like it, too (as well as Yo Sushi - which is not as good as it used to be. I must write to their head office to complain about the continued removal of our favourite dishes from their menu).

Sounds like a nice life so far, Jamie, I must say!

At 12:11 AM, Blogger Jamie said...

Thanks for the tips, Keith and Alex.

Revisiting the Parducci tonight, it seems to have improved a bit. More elegant and supple.

At 4:22 PM, Blogger Jeff said...

Reading all of that made me ridiculously hungry, and the workday just started.

Have you ever tried the Parducci Petite Sirah?

At 11:31 PM, Blogger Jamie said...

Just found some notes from a tasting last may - it turns out the Blnac de Morgex is from Italy's highest vineyards, at 1300 m, and from 100 year old Pergola vines. I gave it exactly the same score then, which is reassuring.


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