My friend Professor Chongwoo Choe has come to his senses and returned to live in Melbourne. He and his wife put on a sumptuous dinner last night with four exciting French wines that he had managed to gather while on his regular academic field trips to France.
To start off we enjoyed a Chablis Grand Cru Grenouilles 2005 which was a non-idiosyncratic – though excellent - co-op Chablis with peachy overtones. It went down well with oysters and a variety of soft cheeses - pure class and the first Grand Cru Chablis your humble correspondent has ever enjoyed. Next came an exceptionally powerful Burgundy wine, a Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru 2003, – this was an intensely-flavoured chardonnay with strong minerally overtones. Then, with an excellent meal of spicy pork, veal and chicken, there followed a super intense and aromatic Latricières-Chambertin Grand Cru 1995 red burgundy – no hint of bottle age, it tasted like a fresh young wine - followed by a good merlot, the Chateau Figeac St Emilion Premier Cru 1997.
Desert was a mango sponge followed by a top local sticky, De Bortoli Noble One Botrytis Semillion 2004.
The six drinkers present were split in their assessment of the wines although most thought the pinot exceptional. My own preference went to the Chablis, a sublime style that I seldom come close to experiencing in Australian wines, although to be frank none of the French wines enjoyed have straightforward Australian correlates. The pinot was my exceptional second choice.