I certainly have provenance, but pedigree is debateable. The fact that I can only determine my provenance a generation or so matters not. I think I carry myself with integrity, and I believe those around me would agree. The vast majority of people on this planet could claim the same, making us all a bit special. Occasionally we all slip up, but it doesn’t really take too much away from us.
So it is with many wines. We went out to celebrate a birthday, which is significant to thoughts on provenance and pedigree. It was a night at one of our favourite eateries, SWMBO, The Chairman, The Young One and JoLo making up the group. What better than an NV Bollinger Champagne ‘Special Cuvee’ to start the proceedings. The new and elegant bottle shape reflect the lighter, less oxidative and aldehydic nature of this house as it comes to terms with the modern world. Still delicious with its body and reliance on Pinot Noir, giving it a degree of gravitas. It’s different, but still got what it takes.
A special bottle to remind us of the passing of Laurence Faller, taken too young. A 2007 Weinbach Alsace Grand Cru ‘Schlossberg’ Riesling ‘L’Inedit’, my favourite serious Alsace Riesling, that combines richness and steely purity. The memories of past vintages flooded back, but this bottle just a little soft, and maybe let down by a poor cork. The Chairman and SWMBO not quite excited, but the rest of us happier.
By all rights the 2010 Anne Gros Chambolle-Musigny 1er ‘La Combe d’Orveau’ should have been a thing of beauty. Afterall, Anne Gros is precision personified, and the 2010 vintage allowing terroir to speak, with Chambolle-Musigny a star place for such expression. Indeed, the wine was fine, fresh and lacy. Maybe too light and lean, the acidity taking control. A pretty and aromatic wine, but on a cold night a bit anaemic. The environs I’m sure affected our appreciation.
Moving onto the 1996 Ch, Pichon-Longueville Baron Pauillac. A star performer for many generations, and a recognised second growth. On a roll too, in these modern days. Talk about provenance and pedigree, this had it in spades. This bottle affected by the galloping disease of horsey brettanomyces. It stopped SWMBO in her tracks. The Chairman and I sipped on it with modest enjoyment. Fleshy to some degree, and well-structured, quite dense, but the gamey flavours building up a bit too much in the end. We forgave it because of its noble history.
Finally, another wine of equal standing. A 2007 Dr Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese Goldcap. Divine stuff, lusciously rich and opulent while still classy and with stylish line and length. Decadent creamy toast, with honey and citrus fruits, succulent, but refreshing, energising but satisfying. The ultimate enigmatic wine. True provenance of the site, and continuing the pedigree beautifully.