Neal Martin's exceptional Pomerol tasting

A pleasant Thursday night outing: Neal Martin was compere for tonight’s tasting at Roberson, with the focus on Pomerol. Neal is writing a book on the topic, and with the research he has done, there is no one more qualified to present this tasting.

Pomerol is newly famous. An appellation of 780 hectares, it’s only really since the 1950s that the wines from this part of Bordeaux have been taken seriously.

We tried 10 different wines, spanning 1952-1999. One of the features of the evening was bottle variation: when you have a two bottle tasting, this becomes apparent. One way round this is to pour alternately, so that neighbours can compare if one of the bottles seem dodgy.

Highlights? 1998 Conseillante had Bugundian elegance. 1995 Lafleur is just a baby, but is quite brilliant. And the 1952 Petrus was annoyingly good (bottle one had a slight edge over bottle two). It wasn’t a truly great wine experience, but it had lovely complexity and length, and was still very much alive.

Notes will follow in due course. I know these aren’t the sorts of wine that most people can drink regularly, but I feel compelled to try to taste as many serious old wines as possible in the name of benchmarking.

It was the second Roberson tasting I’ve attended in a week. And both times I had to wait less than a minute for my district line train to Richmond, which can be a 20 minute wait in the evening. A sign.

Pictured above: Neal chatting with sommelier Dawn Davies before the tasting got underway.

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