Friday, December 31, 2010

Arriving with the New

Seeing the New Year in with Gordy and Perfect P was a rather civilised affair; no outrageous antics, thank goodness, as the day has been action-packed with adventurous exercise and fun (?) household type work. Gordy and Perfect P had travelled some distance after finishing work, so it really was ideal.

SWMBO & I thought we might begin proceedings with a 2005 Paulinshof Bruneberger Juffer Riesling Spatlese on our own. A new producer for both of us, but with the Fritz Haag there doing great things there it was worth a try. Unfortunately this bottle was oxidised, so we thought it best if we waited til the arrival of our guests for thew new bottles. So we sipped on a rather delicious 2007 Mt Edward Riesling, full-bodied, off-dryish, a touch of secondary toast, but with a long way to go.

Then they arrived. 1996 Duval-Leroy Champagne was golden, scarily so, as it too looked oxidised. But instead it was oxidative, and rather heavily so. Rather gutsy and almost brutally so, and not the elegance of Chardonnay-influence I expected. Forward too, as the 1996s are reported to be. Then the most exciting new wine I'd seen in a while. 2009 FX Pichler 'Loibner Berg' Gruner Veltliner 'Smargd' was more like a gentle Gewurztraminer with refined unctuous textures and beautiful rose-petal spices. Gordy served it blind, and we all went Gewurz.... Amazing stuff! To see how good it was, out came a 2001 Rolly Gassmann Gewurztraminer 'Brandhurst' VT. This definitely was Gewurz with sugar and a touch of botrytis, all superbly melded together. Even more unctuous, and drinking on a plateau now. Lots of florals, honey and ginger here. This bottling was new to us, though Rolly Gassmann is well-known.

To see the New Year arrive, we finished off a wee bottle of Esk Valley Liqueur Muscat. 20 years in the making, and now showing the expression and complexity desired. Gorgeously lush with ripe/baked fruits and rancio-barrel complexity. Excellent cutting spirit. The acidity is high. This has been it's bugbear in the earlier showings, but it wall worked. And on top of it, it was packaged par-excellence in a clear 375 ml flute, capped with red wax and carrying a Jane Gray label. This rare wine has arrived, and with the arrival of 2011!

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