The wine of the month, 2019, part 3
April 2019: Louis Roederer, Brut Premier, NV (43 EUR/50 USD in Sweden) white dry blend sparkling wine, Champagne, France, 3,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (80 points of 100 points) (06-04-2019 by Robert Jonasson and Nenad Jelisic)
To this wine of the month, NJ Wines has chosen Louis Roederer's standard champagne, Brut Premier. Louis Roederer is a champagne house that has never disappointed NJ Wines. From the standard champagne Brut Premier and all the way up to the super-elegant prestigious champagne Cristal, Louis Roederer produces champagnes of very high quality. Brut Premier NV is a champagne that is characterized by Louis Roederer's distinctive house style i.e. elegance, freshness and complexity. Louis Roederer is one of the last independent and family owned champagne houses today. The wine has a large and generous aroma with citrus fruits, yellow apples, honey, nougat, mineral and a slight butteriness. Despite the generous aroma, the wine offers great finesse and elegance. The wine has a lovely mousse with lots of small elegant bubbles. The flavour is fresh and clean with a wonderfully refreshing acidity. The wine is both complex and well-balanced, and is dominated in the flavour by citrus fruits, yellow apples and a slight butteriness. The finish is long with a touch of herbs in the end. This is a really good food champagne. Serve it with an artichoke soup with grilled scallops or with small snacks such as lightly salted potato chips topped with crème fraiche and caviar. Serve the Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV at 8°C. The wine should, if possible, be served in wide, tulip-shaped champagne glasses from Riedel Sommelier, Orrefors Difference or similar. The wine is a blend of the three classic Champagne-grape varieties (40% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir and 20% Pinot Menuier). The grapes come mainly from Roederer's own vineyards, only about 20% are purchased. About 80 hectares of the 240 hectares of the vineyards, which is owned by Louis Roederer, are cultivated biodynamically. The grapes from the different plots of the vineyards are fermented separately in steel tanks and oak barrels. Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV is a blend of six different vintages. Reserve wines, which are used to produce the blend, are aged on large oak barrels. The wine is aged on its yeast sediment for 3 years and then, after the disgorging, in bottle for another 6 months.
March 2019: Puligny-Montrachet, Les Nosroyes, Domaine Génot-Boulanger, 2016 (44 EUR/51 USD) white dry wine, Côte de Beaune, Burgundy, France, 4,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (90 points of 100 points) (03-03-2019 by Robert Jonasson)
Finally, the wines of Domaine Génot-Boulanger are available for the Swedish wine lovers! NJ Wines has tried quite a long time to convince the Swedish importers to begin import wines from this fantastic producer. It has been NJ Wine's favorite producer at the Burgundy tastings that Génot-Boulanger had been represented at. Puligny-Montrachet Les Nosroyes 2016 is produced of 100% Chardonnay. The grapes to the wine come from 1,13 ha of those 2,20 ha that Domaine Génot-Boulanger owns in Puligny-Montrachet. The wine has initially somewhat discrete aroma, but it blossoms out to a wine with a great complex aroma when the wine gets warmer in the glass. In the aroma you are invited to a deliciously fruity wine. Pears, citrus fruits, mineral notes and a slight buttery tone can be found in the aroma. The flavour; pears, citrus fruits and minerals; is in a brilliant balance with the aroma. The wine has a soft, smooth, complex and long finish. Serve this wine with a butter-fried chicken fillet, oven-roasted root vegetables and a sauce consisting of crème fraiche, tarragon and Dijon mustard. Another alternative more is a butter-fried cod with white wine sauce and pressed potatoes. Start by serving the wine at about 8°C in large Burgundy glasses from Orrefors, Spiegelau or Riedel. Then let the wine get a few degrees warmer in the glass to release as much aroma and flavour as possible. Puligny-Montrachet Les Nosroyes 2016 can be aged for another 3 to 5 years. After the grapes have been harvested by hand, they are pressed in whole bunches. The wine is fermented in oak barrels where the fermentation takes place with natural yeast. Then the wine undergoes both alcoholic fermentation and malolactic fermentation, but no batonnage is performed. The wine is aged in 225 litre French oak barrels (barrique), of which 20% are new. After 12 months, the wine is racked to stainless steel tanks for an additional 6 months of aging. The wine is filtered before bottling. NJ Wines has previously tasted vintage 2010, 2011 and 2013 of Puligny-Montrachet Les Nosroyes. All these vintages have gotten 3,5 NJP. This shows how impressively even and high-quality Domaine Génot-Boulanger's wines have regardless of vintages.
February 2019: Churchill's, Late Bottled Vintage, 2014 (17 EUR/20 USD in Sweden) port wine, Porto, Portugal, 5,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (100 points of 100 points) (02-02-2019 by Nenad Jelisic)
Absolutely incredible that three vintages of one and the same wine get more than 3,5 NJP of 5,0 NJP. The probability that NJ Wines would give more than 3,5 NJP to three vintages of one and the same wine in price range under 180 SEK is as great as someone would win 100,000,000 SEK in a lottery. The probability is even less that such a wine would get 5,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (100 points of 100 points). Then that NJ Wines, over the last 90 days, has tasted over 60 port wines, some of them over 50 years old, and that just of two of them (including this wine) got more than 4,0 NJP just confirm which talented employees work for Churchill's wine estate. And it cannot be just that. The vines and terroir from which the grapes to this wine come have to be exceptional. Else how Churchill's wine estate would succeed in producing such great wines (port wines) during not so good vintages as vintage 2012, 2013 and this vintage. The vintage 2014 is characterized by a really good tannin structure, a really good acidity, a really good balance and clear white pepper in both aroma and taste. The 2014 vintage also has the best aging potential of all Late Bottled Vintages, which I have tried from Churchill, at least 10 years, if not even more because it has everything required from a wine with a long aging potential. Furthermore, the aging will only make it more complex and irresistible to drink. In addition to the aforementioned white pepper aroma, one finds dried dark cherries, sweet spices, dates, figs, raisins, sweet tobacco, dark chocolate and crème de casis. In addition to the aforementioned white pepper flavour, one finds a very clear cocoa-rich dark chocolate, rum raisins, sweet spices, sweet tobacco, dried dark cherries and figs. The wonderful taste of dark chocolate, white pepper and sweet tobacco stays in the mouth forever. Churchill's Late Bottled Vintage 2014 is an absolutely fabulous wine. The wine is a blend of six different grape varieties: Tinta Barroca, Tinta Francisca, Tinta Roriz, Tinto Cão, Touriga Franca and Touriga Nacional. The wine's production process is as follows: the grapes are harvested by hand, after the harvest, the grapes are delivered to the winery, destemmed and placed in the low stone tanks (lagares) where they are treaded by mechanized feet, then the must is fermented together with the skins in the stone tanks until it has an alcohol strength of 6 to 8% when it is fortified to 19 to 21% with 77% grape spirit. Then the wine is aged in large oak barrels 4 years before it is released on the market. With Late Bottled Vintage, it is meant that the port wine comes from a single vintage and that has been aged in oak barrels between 4 and 6 years. Do not worry about the sediment of the wine in the second to last or the last glass. The sediment only shows that the producer has not filtered the wine at all. The wine will brilliantly fit with a lot of different cheeses like Castello Blue, Gorgonzola, Parmigiano Reggiano, Roquefort, Stilton, and Västerbotten. Or with less sweet cherry pie, blueberry pie and apple pie or with cocoa rich dark chocolate or with pancakes filled with Nutella, very fine grated dark chocolate and walnuts or with Swedish kladdkaka, but so little sweet as possible. Or just enjoy it without any food. I recommend that you start to drink this fabulous port wine at 8°C (unlike what most of wine websites and the producer itself recommend) and let it slowly grows/opens in the glass while you drink it. If you can drink Churchill's Late Bottled Vintage 2014 from Riedel Vinum Port or Orrefors Difference Sweet or Orrefors Elixir.
January 2019: Gusbourne, Blanc de Blancs, 2013 (46 EUR/52 USD in Sweden) white dry sparkling wine, Kent, England, UK, 4,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP (90 points of 100 points) (06-01-2019 by Nenad Jelisic)
It has happened a lot with sparkling wines from England (UK) over the past fifteen years. And here comes the first sparkling wine from the county of Kent in England, which is made according to the Champagne method, that gets 4,0 NJP of 5,0 NJP. The fact that this sparkling wine is served as an aperitif during visiting heads of state at Buckingham Palace does not surprise NJ Wines at all. The wine has a wonderful aroma of toast, brioche and yellow apples. The flavour is complex and has a really good minerality, and clear citrus fruits, yellow apples and hazelnuts. It has a very good balance between acidity, sweetness, fruitiness and minerality. Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs 2013 has a good aging potential of up to 5 years (2024), but it will be drinkable for a long time. It will fit very well as an aperitif or with a luxurious lobster soup with a little saffron or with freshly cooked langoustine (scampi) or with gratinated lobster (not seasoned with hot spices) or with soft tunnbröd (the Swedish version of flatbread) with cold smoked salmon, horseradish and cream cheese (type Philadelphia Original) or with Bouillabaisse (southern French soup). It should be drunk at 8°C, if possible, from real champagne glasses from Orrefors, Kosta Boda, Spiegelau or Riedel. Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs is a sparkling wine made from 100% Chardonnay. Grapes that is used for the wine come from vines that are barely 16 years old and that grow in soil consisting of sand, silt and clay in south-facing position in Appledore in Kent, England. The grapes are harvested by hand and carefully selected both in field and in vineyard. Then they are gently whole bunch pressed and their must is fermented in stainless steel tanks for 10 to 12 days under controlled temperature of 18 to 20°C. Except a small portion of must that is fermented in oak barrels to increase the complexity of the future wine. Then the wine undergoes a 100% malolactic fermentation (the second fermentation) and is bottled for a third fermentation in bottle. When the wine’s fermentation has been done, it is aged on its lees for at least 28 months and another 3 months in bottle before it is released on the market. If Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs 2013, from the barely 16 year old vines, smells and tastes so good, one can only imagine how incredibly good it will smell and taste when the vines are 20 years or older.