其中一個快樂體驗是參加了法國波爾多Clos L'Eglise 酒莊20年的垂直試酒會。位於波爾多右岸Pomerol區，與Chateau Clinet, Chateau L’Eglise Clinet 及Chateau Trotanoy為鄰居，試了由1997年-2016年每年的變化，1997年絶對感受到陳年的優雅，帶皮革、煙草、可可豆、乾梅、乾紫花等。但只差一年的1998年卻帶來完全不同感受，依然活潑，帶黑莓、紫花、朱古力、礦物等。我還喜歡2001年的平衡、香料及黑果香。而2015年及2016年很澎湃，會令你即時幻想到20年後的變化，就像剛喝過的97、98年一樣，我覺得波爾多右岸的風格好像温柔的貴婦，成熟而優雅。
另一個快樂體驗是試了澳洲Coonawarra Wynns酒莊的垂直試酒會，其中試了Wynns Michael Shiraz 1993年及2014年。2014年非常香氣四溢，帶紫花、黑胡椒、車厘子等，像活潑的少女。而1993年圓潤而優雅，帶草本、甘草、乾紫花、礦物、黑果、朱古力等，像熱情的淑女。跟Wynns第一個女高級釀酒師Sue Hodder會面，同場亦試了John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon 2003年，帶紫花、黑莓、草本、香料等，十分有層次，餘韻悠長，Wynns只會於靚年份先出這款酒，而當中只選最好的1%做這支酒，絕對對於值得珍藏。
Not all wines can age gracefully. Besides, wines with aging potential also have their expiry date. If you have tried a 20 year-old wine that is still lovely and vibrant, you should remember the winery’s name and start stocking up its wines for your future consumption. How many 20 years can you spend in your lifetime? It’s really happy to open a nice bottle of 20 year-old vintage wine to enjoy from time to time.
I was very happy to attend Clos L’Eglise 20 years’ vertical wine tasting recently. Situated in Pomerol, the right bank of Bordeaux and the neighbours of Chateau Clinet, Chateau L’Eglise Clinet and Chateau Trotanoy, I tried the vintages from 1997-2016. 1997 is very elegant and aged gracefully, with leather, tobacco, cocoa, dried plum and dried floral notes. As for 1998, it’s just one year part, but the notes are so different. It’s vibrant with blackberries, dried violet, chocolate and mineral notes. I also like 2001 a lot, which is balanced with black fruit and spices. 2015 and 2016 are lively and pungent. You can imagine how they will be elevated in 20 years’ time, just like the 1997 and 1998 that I tasted. I find the style of Bordeaux right bank is just like an elegant and sophisticated lady.
Another happy vertical wine tasting experience is from Coonawarra Wynns tasting. I tried several wines including Wynns Michael Shiraz 1993 and 2014. 2014 is very aromatic with violet, black pepper and cherry notes. It feels like a lovely young lady to me. As for 1993, it’s more rounded and elegant with herbal, licorice, dried violet, mineral, black fruit and chocolate notes. It feels like a passionate woman to me. I was delighted to meet with Sue Hodder, the senior winemaker and the first women winemaker at Wynns, and tried the John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon 2003, with violet, blackberries, herbaceous and spices notes. It is aromatic, complexed and with long finish. Wynns only produce this wine in good vintages and they only pick the best 1% grape to make this wine, which is a real great gem to collect.
While I was sipping and comparing the new and old vintages, my mind kept looping an old song “When Grapes are Ripe” from Eason Chan (HK singer). If love is just like wine, I wonder how many couples can maintain their love relationship for 20 years nowadays? Perhaps it’s easier to grab a bottle of vintage wine to enjoy than finding this long and lasting love.