Our fine wine dinner group met at the spectacular sushi restaurant, Arigato. As usual for this venue, our wine theme was champagne, rieslings, white Burgundy and dessert wines.
We had 14 passionate folks which is about 6-8 more than the norm here and enjoyed the following wines along with multiple shared appetisers/dishes:
2002 MOET & CHANDON GRAND VINTAGE BRUT- I`m a fan of this brut as well as the rose in all vintage since 02` and this bottle shined as al I`ve had before it; it had bright acidity with fresh citrus notes and a touch of spice mindful of Dom; in fact, this could be appropriately named baby Dom as I believe it is marketed to be; it had a creamy mousse which aided in its soft and smooth mouthfeel; it was delicious and eventually voted co-WOTN.
NV ERIC RODEZ BLANC de BLANC BRUT- Grand Cru fruit; this was also a taste treat with wondrous lemon lime flavours served up in a soft and smooth texture; it had nice acidity in balance with all other components; this bubbly held its own against the 3 other champagnes.
2004 PAUL BARA LE CHAMPAGNE SPECIAL CLUB-after the first
2 champagnes, this came in so much bigger and more full bodied in contrast; it had rich and ripe pear and peach fruit which contributed to a mouthful of explosive flavours, bracing acidity, and a long finish; for me, initially it bordered on being almost too overwhelming, but it stopped just short to allow for my palate to adapt and enjoy and in time, mellowed out
2007 AYALA BLANC de BLANC BRUT- great wine in perfect balance; this checked all of the boxes; great and integrated acidity, floral and citrus fruit notes with a touch of salt and pepper accent throughout and some peach notes finishing up the taste profile; although quite elegant, it had a lot of energy to lend to the ultimate experience.
Due to saturated labels, there may be some incorrect spelling and details about most of the remaining wines.
2005 GROSSET POLISH HILL VINEYARD CLARE VALLEY AUSTRALIA RIESLING- petrol in the nose followed by nice mineral infused slightly sweet lemon, lime, apple and red cherry notes; served up in a light to medium body with a pleasant mouthfeel.
2001 TRIMBACH CUVEE FREDERIC EMILE ALSACE RIESLING- this was a fabulous wine with such an inviting perfume of fresh cut flowers and citrus fruit; the taste had more specific honeyed, spicy lemon oil with a touch of minerality ; it was beautifully balanced and just a bit sweet but not too much; one of my favs of the Rieslings.
2015 MARKUS MOLITOR URZIGER WURZGARTEN KABINETT TROCHEN MOSEL RIESLING- nice, sweet, tasty citrus with fresh lemon especially prevalent along with a streak of minerals; really good.
2003 WEINGUT DONNHOFF NORHEIMER DELLCHEN AUSLESE NAHE RIESLING- the nose had smoke and minerals then pear and apple notes came in with some stone fruit arriving late; loved the smooth texture which extended the finish.
2007 WEINGUT REINHARD & BESTE KNEBEL WINNINGER ROTTGEN SPATLESE RIESLING- medium yellow color, this had sweet lemon zest with a viscous oily texture to match; very tasty and refreshing.
2007 SCHLOSS VOLLRADS KABINETT HALBTROCKEN RHEINGAU RIESLING- it had really bright acidity with minty lemon flavours and a great oily texture that carried all of the treasures to the back end; a taste treat and highly sensory pleasing wine.
2002 WEINGUT MAX FERD RICHTER BRAUNEBERGER JUFFER-SONNENUHR AUSLESE RIESLING- very sweet and delicious mineral infused lemon curd served up in a thick texture; full on and long; quite tasty.
2001 MULLER-CATOIR HAARDTER BURGERGARTEN SPATLESE PFALZ RIESLING- the nose was redolent of steel and flint, the taste was of delicious honeyed stone fruit with a streak of minerals down the middle; it just kept on expanding and pleasing.
One Gruner Vettliner:
2012 MALAT GOTTSCHELLE KREMSTAL de RESERVE #1 GRUNER VELTLINER- i suspect I do not have the name exactly correct here as the label was moist and almost indiscernible; nonetheless, the wine was fantastic; it was smooth and creamy and contained wondrous spicy apple, lemon and a hint of caramel.
Three white Burgundys;
2006 DOMAINE MICHEL LARFARGE MEURSAULT- this was drinking really good; it had fennel and honeysuckle accented citrus and apple notes with a soft and so easy on the palate mouthfeel and lots of finesse and charm; this wine was mellow and comforting, a fine Meursault.
2014 LUCIEN LE MOINE CORTON CHARLEMAGNE GRAND CRU- yellow gold colour; a fine wine hitting all of the sensory preceptors just right; nicely balanced with acidity and flavours of fresh citrus, especially lemon and lime; it had enough weight and substance to give it a creamy texture and enough energy to keep one focused from the nose through the tail; one of my favs of the night.
2012 DOMAINE ROMAIN COLLET VALMUR CHABLIS GRAND CRU- very tasty and pleasant all the way through, this medium bodied wine had fresh citrus with some minerals and a touch of flint.
Our lone red wine of the night:
2002 VINCENT GIRARDIN CHAMBERTIN CLOS de BEZ GRAND CRU - this hit the WOW factor big time; it would have stood out even though it was our only red wine, but it got more kudos for just being red; with a still youthful vibrant colour, it had an inviting nose of spicy raspberry and red cherry which continued on through the fine finish; it had a silky soft texture and was in beautiful balance; it tied for WOTN with the 02` Moet.
Three dessert wines:
2002 DOMAINE des BAUMARD QUARTS des CHAUME- 750 ml.; made from botrytised Chenin Blanc, this creamy and rich and flavourful sweetie shined brightly; the nose had some tropical and fresh floral aromas along with some lemon and lime; additionally, some sweet pineapple joined in the taste profile; there was major acidity underlying throughout; it was so good, I had more than one sip and made a note to open up another one soon.
2009 HEINZ EIFEL BEERENAUSLESE RIESLING- 375 ml.; honeyed stone fruit with honeysuckle in the nose and taste with apricot the predominant fruit; it had a thick and almost chewy texture which gave rise to a long, ever lasting finish.
2003 CHATEAU SUDUIRAUT SAUTERNES- 375 ml,; such a treat, this delicious dessert in a glass had fresh honeyed citrus with orange peel most evident along with some spice and ginger and serious acidity.
Another treasured evening with a consummate wine and food experience shared by so many wonderful friends.
Please excuse typos and unintended auto-corrects