I deliberately tried not to re-read the info that I had about it so that I could compare my own tasting notes to those of Chapel Down – and the winemaker there, Andrew Parley.
Throughout this blog I will be posting tasting notes more or less in the format that I learned from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust. Take a look at their ‘Systematic Approach to Tasting Wine’ here.
The only real difference will be the record of the wine on the nose. When I went on to do training at the École du Vin de Bordeaux, one of our tutors, Sabine Sylvestrini, taught us that the French tend to look for a first, and then a second nose. The first is as the wine sits still in the glass; the second is after it’s had a bit of a swirl. I actually agree that there can be considerable differences between the first and second nose on a wine, so I’m incorporating that into my tasting note style.
Here’s a picture of Sabine – just for the hell of it. We were doing an exercise creating our own Left and Right Bank Bordeaux blends. But I digress… Here we go with my tasting note -
Clear, bright, medium+ ruby colour; had a little bit of a spritz
Clean, medium intensity; youthful; first aromas – red cherries, red plums, liquorice, cinnamon; second nose, strawberries and cream, blueberry jam
Dry, medium+ acidity; medium‾ tannins; medium alcohol, medium+ body; medium flavour intensity – flavours of fresh red (and stone) fruit, particularly raspberries and unripe nectarines, a little bit of leather there; medium length
Very good; high-priced (ie £10-15); drink now – won’t keep for ages.
Chapel Down’s own note
‘The nose has plums, brambles and hints of cherry and liquorice. This wine has a soft round palate, smooth tannins, plenty of fruit and a touch of spiciness on the finish’.
Not so very different then in our respective takes. I thought this was a soft, velvety wine in the mouth. I am not a big red Burgundy fan myself but this wine is at a level of quality that gives the Burgundians a good run for their money. We had it with pan-fried, thyme-crusted pork chops and home made roasted chips; a lemon-dressed salad, and a mustard mayo on the side.