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Swiss wines part 4
Dégustation de presse, Casino de Morges, 19 Janvier 2006


As I mentioned earlier in this series, the Mémoire des Vins Suisses (MDVS) is a group of 25 of Switzerland’s top wine producers who have chosen to collaborate in organized tastings each year, where along with current releases, a museum stock of older vintages (the mémoire) will be built up and tasted critically. 

This is the second gathering of the group, and below are my notes on the 25 wines presented, one from each producer. As you can see, many of these wines have a few years bottle age on them: one of the goals of the organization is to document the evolution of these wines. The quality (uniformly high) and diversity on show was refreshing. There are some very nice wines here in a diversity of styles. The following day we had the chance to taste the current releases, which I'll report on next in this series.

Raymond Paccot Le Brez 2002 Féchy
Lovely expressive ripe fruit here: melony and a bit lemony with nice weight. The fruit is rich but well defined. Very good/excellent 90/100

Domaine Louis Bovard Dézaley Médinette 1999 Dézaley
Fresh nutty nose is quite tight with a nice fruitiness. The palate is smooth and elegant with lovely fresh fruit and nice acidity on the finish. Potential here. Very good+ 89/100

Château d’Auvernier Chardonnay Barrique 2001 Neuchâtel
Fresh fruity nose is quite unusual with a herby edge and a hint of tinned peas. Brightly fruited palate has some caramelly oak and a bit more of the herbal character. Quite sweetly fruited and accessible but not my style. Seems to be ageing well, though. Very good 84/100

Château Lichten Petite Arvine 2001 Valais
Lovely cabbagey, smoky edge to the nose – a nice sot of reductive character that works well in the context of this wine. Good fruit. The palate shows rich, bold, ripe fruit with striking high acid finish. Nicely complex with great freshness. A delicious, fascinating wine. Very good/excellent 93/100

Philippoz Frères Ermitage Leytron Barrique 2002 Valais
A blend of Marsanne and Roussanne.
Rich smoky spicy nose with a nice depth of fruit, and some tropical notes. The palate is concentrated, open and rounded with well integrated oak. Quite a creamy character but there’s a nice spicy, high acid finish. Very good/excellent 91/100

Provins Valais Vieilles Vignes Maître de Chais 2000 Valais
A blend of four white varieties.
Open, evolved fruity herby nose is quite sweet. The palate has a caramel edge to the sweet rounded fruit. Quite soft and nutty. Very good+ 87/100

Denis Mercier Cornalin 1999 Valais
Bright fresh red fruits dominate the nose which has a spicy, roasted, slightly herbal edge. The palate is bright and fruity with freshness and high acidity, leading to a nice grippy finish. Very good+ 89/100

Henri Cruchon Raissennaz 2001 Morges
This Pinot Noir has a smooth, slightly shy red fruits nose which is quite fresh and pure. The palate is clean and fresh with bright fruit and a subtle herby edge. Bit of savoury bite on the finish. Tasty high acid style. Very good+ 88/100

Andreas Meier Kloster Sion Pinot Noir Klingnau Réserve Barrique 2000 Klingnau
Smoky, slightly herby edge to the nose which shows tight red and black fruits. The palate has nicely defined fresh dark fruits with a spicy edge and good acidity. Very good+ 89/100

Pircher Eglisauer Stadtberger Blauburgunder Barrique 2000
This Pinot has a rich, sweet spicy oak imprint on the red fruits nose, with some herbiness. Quite inviting. The palate is nicely spicy and elegant with good spicy, herbal definition to the bright fruit. Appealing if a little oaky. Very good+ 89/100

Baumann Pinot Noir ‘R’ 2000 Oberhallau
Sweet elegant chocolatey spicy nose with well integrated oak and very smooth red fruits. Lovely rich elegant palate with nice smooth ripe fruits and good oak. A modern yet elegant Pinot Noir. Very good/excellent 90/100

Hans Ulrich Kesselring Bactobel Pinot Noir No 3 Der Andere 2000
Slightly shy red and black fruits nose leads to a palate that is fresh and accessible with nice fresh fruit and a pleasant, spicy, slightly green edge. Expressive stuff. Very good/excellent 90/100

Georg Fromm Malanser Pinot Noir Barrique 2002
Slightly odd, peppery, herbal edge to the fruit here, with some caramelly notes. Quite light and a bit funky. Good 79/100

Von Tacarner Schloss Reichenau Churer Blauburgunder Barrique Gian Battista 1999
Nice open, spicy herbal nose with ripe red fruits and good complexity. The palate is Burgundian with lovely spicy, slightly earthy structure and good bright red fruits. Delicious stuff with nice definition. Very good/excellent 92/100

Gialdi Sassi Grossi 2001 Ticino
Varietal Merlot. Big roast coffee and spice imprint to the bright fruit on the nose. The palate is full with lots of classy roasted oak supporting the bright red and black fruits. Nicely structured. Very modern and perhaps a little too oaky at the present. Very good+ 86/100

Daniel Huber Montana Magica 2000 Ticino
Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Subtle green note behind the pure sweet red fruits nose. The palate is fresh and fruity with nice structure and just a hint of herbiness. A nice fruit driven style. Very good+ 89/100

Adriano Kaufmann Pio della Rocca 2000 VDT della Svizerra Italiana
A blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Dark vivid fruits on the nose: quite pure and fresh. The palate shows lovely acidity supporting the expressive bright dark fruits. Lovely concentration, structure and definition. Very good/excellent 91/100

Christian Zündel Orrizonte 2000 VDT della Svizerra Italiana
Big bretty nose: pungent, spicy and animally. The palate is full and fruity with a spicy, medicinal character and good acidity. Striking stuff, but I reckon there’s a fair whack of brett here. Very good+ 86/100

Jean-Pierre Pellegrin Grand’Cour 2000 Peissy
A blend of Cabernets Franc and Sauvignon. Lovely pure, sweet, open black fruit nose with a liqueur-like character. Smooth cassis dominates. The palate is delicious, open and soft with sweet, smooth, elegant fruit and some grippy tannin. Delicious current drinking. Very good+ 91/100

Hammel Domaine du Crochet Cuvée Charles Auguste 2001 Mont-sur-Rolle
A blend of Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.
Really classy open black fruits nose with a hint of chocolate and spice. Really nice definition. The palate shows nice bright fruit with good acid and an attractive savouriness. Restrained with plenty of future ahead of it. Very good/excellent 92/100

Cayas Syrah du Valais 2000 Valais
Open, smoot sweet dark fruits nose with olivey, meaty character. The palate shows really open sweet meaty fruit and good acidity and freshness. Quite a forward, sweetly fruited style. Very good/excellent 90/100

Simon Maye & Fils Syrah Chamoson Vieilles Vignes 2000 Valais
Dark, open, spicy meaty nose with pure black fruits and savoury, peppery complexity. The palate is concentrated and dense with massive spice and clove character. Savoury and dense. Complex and quite like a very good northern
Rhône Syrah in character. Very good/excellent 94/100

Marie-Thérèse Chappaz, Cave La Liaudisaz, Petite Arvine Grain Nobile 2000 Valais
Deep coloured.
Fantastic full complex botrytis nose of spicy apricot fruit. Very sweet. There’s a massive concentration of spicy fruit on the palate which is super-rich and viscous, with lots of fat, honeyed apricot fruit. Lovely spicy finish. Very good/excellent 94/100

Domaine Cornalus Hermitage Octoglaive 2000 Valais
Sweet open herb, caramel, tea and apricot nose. The palate is viscous and sweet with huge concentration. Perhaps a little cloying. Thick melon and peach fruit. Very good/excellent 90/100

Philippe Darioly Vent d’Anges 2001 Valais
Sweet, honeyed, syrupy grapey nose. Super sweet, intense palate with fruity, spicy notes and some tea-like herby complexity. Concentrated and full; perhaps lacking a bit of balance, but still nice. Very good+ 89/100  

see also

Wines tasted 01/06
Find these wines with wine-searcher.com

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