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The tastings held in Marlow and London by Ultimate Wines are becoming a regular fixture on the wine tasting circuit. The last tasting I managed to get to covered Dessert Wines. With a varied and eclectic range to taste and match with various foods it was a superb tasting.

Would you believe Guacamole was the surprise hit of the evening? I think it must be the inherent fat in the dish – acting similar to that in cheese, with the acidity cutting through the richness. You really should try it once!

Stand by your beds.. here we go…

  • Hugel Riesling Vendage Tardive, 1990, Alsace, France.
    Price per bottle £34.08.
    With 15 years development the complex lime and grapefruit nose is showing that distinctive petrolly edge you get from older Rieslings. The palate is clean and fresh with just a touch of sweetness to the lime and peach flavours. An aperitif style perhaps. Alcohol 13%.

    Scribblings Rating – 90/100
  • Sybille Kuntz Riesling Beerenauslese, 1999, Mosel, Germany.
    £55.23 per half bottle.
    A sweet palate, low alcohol (11.5%) and layers of honeyed apricots cascade over the tongue/ Flavours full and upfront. Rather nice but look at that price! Superb with guacamole – no really it just worked! Also excellent with cranberry laced cheese.

    Scribblings Rating – 92/100
  • Mt Horricks Cordon Cut Riesling, 2003, Clare Valley, Australia.
    £14.69 per half bottle.
    A stunning nose, concentrated, very sweet – marmalade, honey, just a hint of petrol. Orange and tangerines ingrained through to the finish. Was excellent with fois gras and chocolate ganache. Alcohol 10.5%.

    Scribblings Rating – 90/100
  • Fairview La Beryl Blanc, 2004, Paarl, South Africa.
    £9 per 50cl bottle.
    A straw-wine made from dried grapes. A 50-50 blend of Chenin Blanc and Semillon. Quite honeyed and spicy too but with a balancing high acidity. Gorgeous copper-tinged colour. This was just ‘OK’ with chocolate but a much better match with a not too sweet macaroon. Alcohol 12.5%.
    Scribblings Rating – 90/100
  • Cascina Chicco Arcass Vendemmia Tardiva, NV, Piedmont, Italy.
    £20 approximately.
    Lovely nose – lemon, richly concentrated, delicious. Spicy, apricots, dried citrus fruits. Again this cut through the fat of the guacamole, was excellent with rich cheeses and would be good with sweet pastries too. Alcohol 13.5%.

    Scribblings Rating – 96/100

    Pieropan Le Colombare Label
    Pieropan Recioto Label.

  • Pieropan ‘Le Colombare’ Recioto di Soave, 2001, Italy.
    £19.09 per 50cl bottle.
    Superb deep copper colour and an equally excellent aroma – all vanilla, melon and strawberry tart. A luscious complex palate with dried apricots, a hazelnut edge and an intense spiced orange edge. Superb with chocolate and Stilton with apricots. Alcohol 13%.

    Scribblings Rating – 92/100
  • Schloss Gobelsburg Gruner Veltliner Eiswien, 2003, Kamptal, Austria.
    £17.04 per half bottle
    Just 8% alcohol on this ice-wine. A disappointing aroma – not much to it to be truthful. The palate is concentrated and sweetly rich with a wonderful cascade of flavours – lime and toffee, pear and lemon-drops.

    Scribblings Rating – 88/100
  • Feiler-Artinger Ruster Ausbruch, 2001, Neusiedlersee, Austria
    £19.98 per half bottle.
    Crafted from a mix of Welschriesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris and Neuberger. There is a distinctive richness to the palate with toffee and orange dominating the botrytised edge. Very good with hazelnut macaroons.

    Scribblings Rating – 92/100
  • Gross Gewurztraminer Trockenbeerenauslese, 2002, South Styria, Austria.
    Not available in the UK but price approximately £24.
    A simply stunning aroma – opulent was a word banded about. The palate although rich with botrytis, honey, peach and roses, long lingering ginger and cinnamon it seemed a little underdeveloped – too young! Being only excellent at the moment this is going to be superb.

    Scribblings Rating – 96/100
  • Campbells of Rutherglen Muscat, NV, Rutherglen, Australia.
    Price per half bottle £8.81.
    People did this lovely wine down – and I don’t understand why! Having sampled this a few days previously, where I gave it a 92/100 I think it must have been the sticky heat of the day that gave this 17.5% fortified a bad showing. Perhaps having it chilled would have assisted. One quote mantioned it as ‘The Enoch Powell of the wine world’.
  • Aldo Marenco Passito del Briccetto, 2004, Piedmonte, Italy.
    Not available in the UK price approximatly £12.
    Red in colour and a most unusual, yet intreguing and inticing aroma. Fruit cake stuffed with a sweet cherry compote and a lingering cherry-medicinal finish. Herbal almost. Made from dried grapes and with 13.5% alcohol. Quite dry in comparison to many of the wines sampled. 100% Dolcetto grapes dried on rucj mats for two months. Alcohol 13.5%.

    Scribblings Rating – 94/100
  • Strohmeier Granz a Siassa Trockenbeerenauslese, 2002, West Styria, Austria.
    Not available in the UK but price approximatly £26.
    Very intense, deep and fruit-syrupy. Rose hips and strawberries dominating the fruity juice edge. Excellent with chocolate and hazelnut macarooons. Just 7% alcohol.

    Scribblings Rating – 94/100
    Strohmeier label detail
  • Xavier Cla Mil.lenium Dol, 2002, Terra Alta, Spain.
    Price per half bottle £23.50.
    Liquid blackberries with hints of cloves, powerfully intense with a minty edge and a hint of tannin. Made from late-picked Grenache. 15% Alcohol.

    Scribblings Rating – 90/100
  • Lopez Hermanos Reserva de la Familia Pedro Ximenez, NV, Malaga, Spain.
    Price for 50cl £9.99.
    You can’t fail to be captivated by the deep raisin, stewed plum and date flavours of this true sticky. It really is liquid Christmas pudding. 17% alcohol.

    Scribblings Rating – 90/100
  • Scholss Halbturn Grand Vin Trockenbeerenauslese, 2002, Burgenland, Austria.
    Price £50 per bottle.
    Another wine that really needs more time. Now it is perfectly balanced with emerging complexity on the palate. But I didn’t like the waxy, botrytis nose. A blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon with just 9% alcohol.

    Scribblings Rating – 84/100


  1. lenn says:

    I wish I could find a dessert wine tasting around here…I do love them so!
    BTW…your brit bottles are on deck…may even pop the top on one of them tonight!

  2. spittoon says:

    Wine Blogging Wednesday 13 – With Chocolate.

    Chocolate and Zucchini is hosting this months WBW; the theme being wine with chocolate. Clotilde kindly supplied a recipe for making the cake. I duly followed the instructions deviating only slightly by adding a little splash of my wine choice…


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