It’s a pleasure when Gordy gets to town. He’s got a special or interesting bottle up his sleeve, and we must rummage around to get one ready, or pop into a good wine shop to pick one up. We’d all had a big day, so a couple of bottles only were brought out at the end of the evening to keep us all on our toes.
Gordy’s contribution was a 2011 Domaine Huet ‘Le Haut Lieu’ Vouvray Sec. Huet has had a stellar reputation and that seemed to diminish, unjustiably, when Gaston Huet passed away, but his son-in-law Noel Pinguet has brought it back. There are some who wonder if the wines are the same. Of course it takes a keen person to keep up with the ins and outs of Vouvray, when its Bordeaux, Burgundy Rhone and Champagne that hogs the limelight. 2011 forced earlier picking because of rain, and continues a topsy-turvy run of years. Gordy and SWMBO were rather disappointed by this bottle, not having the weight and maybe some issues with pristineness. I saw it as elegant and varietal, and was more forgiving. I like the sweeter and richer releases, so this ultimately let me down.
Our bottle was a 2007 Speri Amarone della Valpolicella Classico ‘Mont Sant’Urbano’. Black as black, and with black fruits with tar and porty notes, with mineral and earth. Always a difficult style to get a handle on for me. I come to the style, then find it too hard. Gordy noted that reduction is a trait with this label for him, and I fell into the trap of suggestion. It certainly waxed and waned in this respect. I could tolerate it, and it added to the ever changing nature of the wine, and thus whether I liked it or not. The one constant was that glycerol texture. When a wine has that degree of unctuousness, ehether it’s from drying the grapes or old vine extract – whatever – it’s delicious! At the end of the night, this was the wine that satisfied our need for something to hold our attention.