International Wine Challenge awards dinner
Last night was the International Wine Challenge Awards Dinner. Lots and lots of wine trade people in a huge ballroom in a swanky Park Lane hotel, all dressed up very smartly (black tie). I always find it quite funny seeing just how well everyone scrubs up for events like this; even the scruffiest, most badly dressed of the wine trade turn out impeccably for this sort of gig.
I was sitting at the Emma Wellings PR table, which was quite jolly. But it seemed that the speeches and awards took more time than they did last year, not finishing until 11.30 pm. On the way out I bumped into Chris and Jane Scott of 30:50, who had won an award. They live near me so we shared the cost of a cab back home. For 10 minutes, though, I had a rather surreal conversation with Chris, which confused me greatly until I realized that he'd mistaken me for Sam Harrop.
Here are my notes on some of the sweet wines that we were served. I know it's sad to be taking notes at a dinner like this, but this was when the awards were being dished out.
Mission Hill Riesling Reserve Icewine 2006 Okanagan Valley, Canada
Very, very sweet and grapey with aromatic grapey, raisiny notes. Massively concentrated, viscous palate is supersweet, rounded an full. A huge wine that's still in balance, if a little overpowering. 90/100
Rabl Gruner Veltliner Eiswein 2006 Langenlois, Austria
Citrussy, sweet and herby with lovely elegant, fresh fruit that's viscous and intense at the same time. Nice acidity. A striking, supersweet unctuous wine with the richness offset by good acidity. 91/100
Ordonez Seleccion Especial No 1 2006 Malaga, Spain
Aromatic with lovely complex orange, tea and herb notes on the nose. Viscous, grapey palate with sweet fruitiness but also a lovely expressive character. 91/100
Hans Lang Riesling Auslese Hattenheimer Hassel 2005 Rheingau, Germany
Sweet and honeyed with some melony fruit. Rich with lots of fruit, and quite viscous, too. Well made but not as exciting as I was hoping. 89/100
Labels: sweet wine