Spent the evening with Doug Wregg at Terroirs. It’s hard to imagine a better evening of food and wine: authentic, expressive and in good measure. It proved hard to draw myself away to catch the last train back home.
We dined well. Matje Herring, a bit like ceviche, was delicious, as were the clams with coriander and lemon. Piperade Basquaise was like the ultimate adult version of baby food. Tuscan chopped raw steak was a tasty treat. Then we shared a braised rabbit leg (tender and gently gamey), as well as a slow cooked Suffolk pork belly (which was tasty, but the least convincing dish of the night).
But the show belonged to the wines. Rarely have I had such a consistently life-affirming, exciting line-up of bottles. It hurt not to finish them all off, but sense prevailed. Prices given are the restaurant per bottle price.
Thierry Puzelat Romarantin Vin de Table Blanc 2009
Very fresh, bright, pure nose is citrussy with some fine minerally notes and a hint of smokiness. The palate is fresh and tight with lovely intense minerality and citrus and green apple fruit. Alive and profound with amazing freshness. 93/100 (£40.75)
Massia Vecchia Bianco 2006 Maremma, Tuscany, Italy
12.5% alcohol. Orange colour. Incredible, open, appealing nose of apricot fruit with floral overtones and a hint of mint. The palate is fresh and lively with some grippiness. Nice structure here with lovely tangerine and apricot fruit. Quite elegant with a citrus-peel-like freshness. 93/100 (£59.25)
Roagna Barbaresco Pajé Reserva 1998 Piedmont, Italy
Beautiful nose: dark cherries, spice, some floral overtones, hints of leather, tar and herbs. The palate has lovely grippy tannic structure with fresh acidity. Still really youthful with lovely fruit and some spiciness. A really serious wine with real complexity. 94/100 (£76)
Domaine Arretexea Irouléuy Rouge Cuvée Haitza 2007 Southwest France
Very primary nose is vivid, floral and intense with dark cherry and berry fruit. The palate has a subtle bloody, mineral edge to the sweet, slightly sappy cherry fruit. Very fresh. 91/100 (£50)
Marco de Bortoli Veccio Sampaeri Vino Liquoroso NV Marsala
Sherried, spicy and a bit salty with a hint of tawny port on the nose, as well as notes of vanilla, nuts and old casks. The palate is nutty and rich with raisin and cask notes. Quite profound with amazing length. Complex and intense, finishing dry. 95/100
Emilio Hidalgo El Tresillo Amontillado 1874 Solera
Amazing nose: nutty, spicy, citrussy and taut with lovely freshness and complexity. Cedary and broad. The palate is intense, tangy and fresh with lovely nutty depth. Fresh with a subtly cheesy edge and some old furniture complexity. Mind-blowing. 97/100