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Two weeks after we had our Inexpensive Bordeaux tasting, we were at it again, and this time it was all white wines. In a recent wine tastings article in WSJ, they reviewed some dressy summer whites, actually White Burgundies. We managed to find one of them at LCBO, so we decided to give it a try. But instead of getting some more White Burgundies, Vincent picked different kinds of white wines for our tasting. Here is the list of wine we tried:
  1. Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2005 (New Zealand) $29.95
  2. Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet 2002 (Burgundy, France) $57.95
  3. Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Riesling Kabinet 2002 (Moselle-Saar-Ruwer, Germany) $21.95
  4. Zind Humbrecht Pinot Gris Herrenweg de Turckheim 2004 (Alsace, France) $38.95

Since most of us are still quite inexperience in wine tasting, we like the idea of having distinctively differnet white wines, so that we can see the big contrast between them. Also we didn’t do a blind taste, so we could just openly asked Vincent what we thought about the wines while we were drinking them.

Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2005

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 91
This is the highest this benchmark wine has ever scored with our tasters, from what is beginning to look like an excellent year for Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. It’s still in an early estery phase right now, marked by honeyed tropical fruits, nectarines and grapefruit, but you can sense the herbal-jalapeño flavors lurking in the background. Rich and powerful on the palate, long on the finish, with this wine, Cloudy Bay is on top of its game.

Wine Name: Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2005
Producer: Cloudy Bay
Region/Appellation: New Zealand, Marlborough
Grape Varieties: Sauvignon Blanc
Alcohol: 13.5%
Price: $29.95

Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet 2002

WSJ Dow Jones Index: Very Good
Best value. Serious wine. Plenty of fleshy fruit, but tightly focused into phyllo-like lyaers of taste. Seems expensive.

Wine Name: Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet 2002
Producer: Joseph Drouhin S.A.
Region/Appellation: France, Burgundy
Grape Varieties: Chardonnay
Alcohol: 13.5%
Price: $57.95

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Riesling Kabinet 2002

Wine Spectator Rating: 92
Rich and creamy, yet backed by tangy acidity, providing a stage for the pear, apricot and banana flavors. Really multidimensional and long, picking up a mineral aftertaste. Terrific ’02 kabinett. Drink now through 2015.

Wine Name: Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Riesling Kabinet 2002
Producer: Graach Josephshöfer
Region/Appellation: Germany, Moselle-Saar-Ruwer
Grape Varieties: Riesling
Alcohol: 9.0%
Price: $21.95

Zind Humbrecht Pinot Gris Herrenweg de Turckheim 2004

‘First and foremost, you get a sense of genius in every glass of Zind-Humbrecht wine. But [Olivier Humbrecht] also has the amazing ability to explain the winemaking process from its origins deep within the soil, through the vine, into the grape, through harvest and fermentation, through ageing and bottling, and into your glass, so that even a wine novice understands exactly why the wine tastes the way it does … [He is also a raconteur and comic genius. Asked how he knows his grapes are ripe, he replies] ‘When the birds start eating the fruit.’ (Robert Parker Jr., http://www.erobertparker.com/, April 15, 2004) ‘I’m going to suggest that Zind-Humbrecht is probably the best producer in Alsace, with a stunning line-up of powerful, rich wines that possess a real sense of place.’

Wine Name: Zind Humbrecht Pinot Gris Herrenweg de Turckheim 2004
Producer: Zind Humbrecht
Region/Appellation: France, Alsace
Grape Varieties: Pinot Gris
Alcohol: 15%
Price: $38.95

The GINI White Wine Index

Even though we didn’t have a blind taste, we still rank them. We ranked the bottles 1 to 4, add up the numbers, whichever one has the lowest score is the best. Here is the list of participants: Aaron, Andrew, Kelvin, Kwong C, Kwong T, Naomi, Stephanie, Vincent W

 

Bottle #

Vineyard

Region

Pts

Group Rank

My Rank

1

Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2005

New Zealand, Marlborough

28

4

1

2

Joseph Drohin Puligny-Montrachet 2002

France, Burgundy

16

2

2

3

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Riesling Kabinet 2002

Germany, Moselle-Saar-Ruwer

22

3

3

4

Zind Humbrecht Pinot Gris Herrenweg de Turckheim 2004

France, Alsace

14

1

4

Down the Drain

Of course we didn’t let a single drop wasted; this time is the most we spent on wine (yet)

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