Dom Perignon Dom Perignon 1996

This is still so youthful. Such depth of creamy, fine bakery aroma, both savoury and sweet. Citrus cake, seville orange and candied fruit. There’s a sense of roundness, then a real rush of acid energy on the palate. Super

18.5

Date Tasted : 24/09/2018

/ 1996, Champagne, Classic Blend, Dom Perignon

Majolini Brut Millesimato 2010

90% Chardonnay, 10% Pinot Noir. I’m not sure how long this has had either on lees or post-disgorgement, but it’s showing some interesting development. Intense grapefruit and citrus character on the nose, going towards tropical fruits laced with bitter herbs and honey. Sweet quince preserve adds to the complexity, as does that slightly pithy character on the palate. It does work well, though it’s not completely harmonious. I would probably have had this a bit younger. Distinctive.

15.5

Date Tasted : 05/05/2018

/ 2010, Classic Blend, Franciacorta, Majolini

Charles Heidsieck Vintage 2005

Meaty, toasty lemon curd, with vanilla and cream. Ripe candied citrus too, and a lovely, textured almond sweetness on the palate. Punchy

17

Date Tasted : 24/09/2018

Court Garden Blanc de Blancs 2014

Pours a very pale elderflower in the glass. This quite a softly-spoken wine, with fresh green apple and an interesting, faintly exotic melon character. The bottle promises lychees on the nose, which I can understand – I wonder if there’s a musqué Chardonnay clone in the blend? There’s just a touch of pear tart richness lurking. The palate is all lemon and lime, sweet and sour, with marked acidity and a slim texture. I wonder if they’ll hang on to some and disgorge it with a bit more time on lees – in any case, if you have some you could tuck it away for a year.

14.5

Date Tasted : 04/01/2020

/ 2014, Blanc de Blancs, Court Garden, England

Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut 2015

Made in Cornwall with grapes from across Southern England (lots from Essex I hear). What appears to be quite a fun, fruit-driven wine on the nose does start to throw up some lovely complex shades with a bit of time in the glass. There’s strawberry macaroon and redcurrant fruit at first, together with this very English hedgerow fruit character (crabapple/hawthorn jelly*). Behind it all there’s sweetness of clementine and ripe pink grapefruit as well as little touches of spice and cream. Fresh, straightforward and balanced on the palate, which is quite tight right now.

16.5

Date Tasted : 04/01/2020

/ 2015, Camel Valley, England, Rosé

Janisson-Baradon Toulette 2008

Powerful grapefruit and burnt lemon aromas, with sweet, candied tropical fruit and nectarine. Bitter almond and coffee notes too – really distinctive and intense. The palate is taut and pithy, with lemon marmalade and those crystallised fruits really coming through. A touch of bitterness too, unshaded by dosage but quite attractive and refreshing

17

Date Tasted : 10/07/2018

Catherine et Pierre Breton La Dilettante

Elegant, delightful fizz. The nose is so alluring, with apples in honey at first, some zesty yellow grapefruit and then richer, sweeter mango notes. Pretty, elderflower-like floral touches too. It’s flinty and just a tiny bit smoky – this is one to really get the ‘wet stone’ note you hear wine writers talk about. Lovely balance between the firmer, vinous character and those yellow fruits on the palate, which is direct and refreshing. Unencumbered by sweetness and flavoursome right through the palate, unlike some less illustrious sparkling Chenin

16.5

Date Tasted : 12/07/2018

/ Catherine et Pierre Breton, France, Other