Berry Bros. & Rudd Portfolio Tasting Hong Kong - 25/09/14

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This was a tasting I really enjoyed. Not to say I don’t usually enjoy tastings (I’d be in the wrong job if I didn’t!) but sometimes some are just better than others. Not only was this one full of interesting and high quality wines to taste, it was also organised in such a way that I could get round the room in the two hours I had, without having to barge my way through hundreds of people to get access to the wines. Something of a near miracle at HK tastings these days!

Hosted at the Mandarin Oriental and arranged very succinctly into 9 tables of around 7 wines each, I managed to taste pretty much everything I wanted to, without feeling like I’d missed too much out by the end. It gave me a real snapshot of what Berry’s portfolio here in Hong Kong is all about. They list some lovely wines that I would highly recommend looking out for. My top picks are as follows:  

Sparkling

2009 Knightsbridge Blanc de Noirs, Ridgeview Estate, UK

Made from Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, this has lovely apple and red fruit notes on the nose with some nice creamy, yeasty character. Good balance between fruit concentration and acidity, which isn’t as high and as piercing as some English sparkling wines. A good alternative to Champagne. 17 HK$290

2008 Gramona, Brut Vintage, Gran Reserva, Cava, Spain

From arguably the finest Cava producer, this has lovely lemon fruit on the nose with touches of white flowers and plenty of toasty brioche notes. Savoury, nutty and full on the palate with hints of lime. 17 HK$180

 

Great Value Wines

2010 Bourgogne Aligoté, Domaine Bruno Clavelier, France

This comes from vines that are 85 years old making a wine with some considerable weight and power not always seen with Aligoté. Citrus and pineapple notes on the nose with a clear mineral edge. Good value. 16 HK$160

2011 Mâcon-La-Roche Vineuse, Vieilles Vignes, Olivier Merlin, Burgundy, France

Creamy and round with nice lemon fruit and a touch of toasty oak adding further complexity. Smooth and well balanced. A wine that won’t disappoint. 16.5 HK$170

2007 Rioja Tinto, Finca Allende, Spain

Lovely black and red fruit character, plums, raspberries, black cherries with undertones of tobacco, spice and cedar. Well structured with nice complexity. 16.5 HK$198

 

White Wines of France & Austria

2012 Grüner Veltliner, Achleiten, Smaragd, Prager, Wachau, Austria

Lots of fresh apple character with peach and plenty of fine, steely mineral tones. Lovely balance between refreshing acidity and intense fruit concentration. A very high class wine. 17.5 HK$410

2011 Riesling Muenchberg, Grand Cru, Domaine André Ostertag, Alsace, France

Tons of ripe fruit balanced by refreshing high acidity and marked minerality makes for wonderful balance and texture in this wine. An evidently terroir-driven wine. 17 HK$380

2012 L’Esprit de Chevalier Blanc, Pessac-Léognan, Bordeaux, France

Vegetal, grassy and savoury on the nose this offers something a little different. Lovely high acidity and complex savoury flavours makes it a good food option. 16.5 HK$192

2010 Pouilly-Fuisse, En Carementrant, Bret Brothers, Burgundy, France

Pure lemon Chardonnay fruit with tangy acidity and a good mineral edge. 16.5 HK$220

2010 Meursault, Jean-Philippe Fichet, Burgundy, France

Rich and creamy lemon-butter character with a fine line of balancing acidity to freshen the palate. 16.5 HK$410

2010 Meursault, Les Tillets, Domaine Patrick Javillier, Burgundy, France

Lovely lemon character with creamy oak and wonderful minerality. A racy wine with lovely balance and tons of complexity and elegance. Highly recommended. 18 HK$448

 

USA

2011 Domaine Drouhin Chardonnay, Cuvee Arthur, Oregon, USA

Nicely aromatic on the nose with citrus fruits and white flower blossom. A touch of oak, fresh acidity and some lovely steely minerality giving a sense of place. A lovely wine. 17.5 HK$220

2010 Au Bon Climat Chardonnay Bien Nacido “SBHVC”, USA

Lemon, grapefruit, lime on the nose with buttery touches and a strong mineral edge. Fresh, zippy acidity giving wonderful balance to the concentrated fruit. Very tasty. 17.5 HK$260

 

Burgundy

2009 Beaune, Les Teruons, 1er Cru, Domanie Rossignol-Trapet

Plenty of nice berry fruit with herbal scents. Nice and fresh on the palate. Very tasty. 17 HK$380

2007 Chambolle-Musigny, La Combe D’Orvaux, Domaine Jean Grivot

Lovely fresh red berry fruit with some nice developing notes adding to complexity. Good levels of acidity and tannins making for a balanced structure. 17.5 HK$460

2007 Nuits-St Georges, Clos des Argillières, 1er Cru, M & P Rion

Ripe raspberry and strawberry fruit, rich and voluptuous, complex and deep. Lovely acidity balancing fine tannins and good fruit concentration. A very nice wine. 18 HK$525

 

Italy, Spain, Argentina

2008 Sagrantino di Montefalco, Fattoria di Antano, Umbria, Italy

Red cherry and plum fruit aromas, very juicy and tangy, high acid and very high grippy tannins. Classically Italian. 17 HK$290

2009 Taurasi Poliphemo, Luigi Tecce, Paternopoli, Campania, Italy

Lovely lifted floral perfumes with red and black fruit aromas and mineral undertones. Very elegant yet with high acid and high tannin classic of good Taurasi. 16.5 HK$360

2010 Artadi Valdeginés, Rioja, Spain

Deep blackberry and black plum fruit with some floral tones, full body, good acidity and grippy tannins. A very pure and fruit forward wine. 17.5 HK$380

2007 Artadi, Pagos Viejos, Rioja, Spain

Developing some lovely savoury, truffly character yet with plenty of ripe black berry fruit layered on top. Very complex, very long finish. A really stunning wine. 18.5 HK$850

2011 Pulenta Estate Gran Malbec, Mendoza, Argentina

Smooth, creamy blackberry fruit with nice violet undertones. Fruit driven with nice smooth tannins and good body. 16 HK$240

 

Rhône Varietals

2011 St Joseph, Domaine Pierre Gonon, Northern Rhône, France

Blackberry and black cherry fruit notes with lots of savoury, meaty character. Nice grippy tannins and fresh acidity to balance the concentrated fruit. 16.5 HK$320

2004 Domaine de Trévallon Rouge, Alpilles, Southern France

A really unique wine. Lots of sweet, ripe fruit character balanced by fresh acidity and high grippy tannins. Very complex. 17.5 HK$460

2010 Qupe, Syrah Bien Nacido Vineyard, Santa Maria Valley, California, USA

Plenty of ripe black fruit with meaty and black pepper spicy nuances with some thyme and sage character. Soft tannins with medium acidity. Good value. 16.5 HK$218

All wines are available to purchase from Berry Bros. & Rudd HK: http://www.bbr.com/HK/

 

 

 

 

 

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