Tuesday, June 18, 2024

LeDomduVin: Chateau Calon Ségur Saint-Estèphe 2016


Chateau Calon Ségur Saint-Estèphe 2016



I first tasted Calon Segur in the early '90s at the restaurant where I worked (Le Relais de Compostelle, Pessac).

I must admit that I was not very fond of Saint-Estephe's wines then. They were always quite rustic, dry, and austere to my palate, with a soil-driven earthy taste, often backed up by astringent tannins.

Two Chateaux always seemed to come on top of this appellation and please my taste buds: Cos d’Estournel and Calon Segur. Calon being less expensive (on the wine list), I had more occasions to taste and serve it.

During my London years (1997-2002), Calon Segur was always mentioned in the wine lists of the various restaurants where I worked, but I did not sell or taste much of it, as my taste for Saint-Estephe’s wines had not changed much. I preferred to open wines from other Bordeaux appellations.

During the first five years of my New York years (2002-2011), I had the chance to come to Bordeaux every year to participate in the “En Primeurs,” visiting chateaux and tasting hundreds of wines for 8 to 10 days straight each time.

It allowed me to reconnect with the wines of Saint-Estephe, which had evolved into much fruitier, smoother, and more integrated wines compared to the 1990s. I rediscovered this appellation with a new perspective and enthusiasm, finding wines I previously “disliked” to be more to my liking.

Due to technical changes and improvements in vineyard and cellar management, Chateaux like Montrose, Phelan-Segur, and Lafon-Rochet, for example, became more fruit-forward, rounder, more approachable, less rustic, and less tannic. The 2000s saw a renewal of interest for Saint-Estephe wines.

The quality of Saint-Estephe wines has never ceased to increase ever since.






Château Calon Ségur 2016


This beautiful wine offers elegant aromas of ripe black fruits and spices with floral, mineral, earthy, and oaky nuances. Medium-bodied yet rich and generous, it is well-structured and fresh, with exceptional aging potential. Loved it.


Cheers! Santé!

Dom

@ledomduvin #ledomduvin @chateaucalonsegur #chateaucalonsegur #calonsegur #saintestephe #bordeaux #redwine #grandcru #vin #wine #vino #wein #tastingnotes #sommelier




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Monday, June 17, 2024

LeDomduVin: Champagne Henriot “L’Inattendue” Chardonnay Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru 2016



Champagne Henriot “L’Inattendue” Chardonnay Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru 2016



I have always loved Champagne Henriot. 

Even their entry-level "Brut Souverain NV" is always a delight for the taste buds. It is rich, generous, ample, well-balanced, and enjoyable for any occasion. It is one of my "go-to" Champagnes and a real steal at this price! 

But today, I would like to talk about their special Cuvée, "L'Inattendue" ("the unexpected"), which has been one of my favorite champagnes lately.

The idea behind the creation of this Cuvée was to exemplify one of the House's founding craftsmanship principles: highlighting the diverse terroirs of Champagne. As such, it reveals the unique characteristics of a specific terroir to a single-year and grape variety.

Crafted with 100% Chardonnay from the terroir of the Côte des Blancs in the Grands Crus vineyard of Avize, aged for at least four years, with a dosage of 4 g/L, the 2016 was their first vintage.

I opened this bottle recently, and it was superb. 







2016 Champagne Henriot “L’Inattendue” Chardonnay Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru


Beyond its pale, light golden color, the nose offers fresh, refined, elegant aromas of citrus fruit and minerality combined with stone fruit, floral, and light toasted nuances. The perfectly balanced and focused palate is extremely delicate and charming, with barely perceptible fine bubbles pearling on the tongue, leaving refreshing, chalky, and lemony sensations. The sharp acidity and zesty flavors expand gently until the lingering finish. 

Like a ballerina, it is a majestic expression of complexity, precision, elegance, and sophistication. 

Moreover, at around 110 Euros, it is an exceptional vintage champagne that can easily compete with some of the much better-known vintage champagnes worth four to five times more.

A Champagne that truly deserves its name "L"inattendue" to discover if you have not done it already. 

Cheers! Santé! 

Dom

@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #vin #wine #vino #wein #champagne @champagnehenriot #champagnehenriot #henriot #chardonnay #grandcru #vintage #millesime #tastingnotes #sommelier #sommelierlife #sommlife #ilovemyjob



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LeDomduVin: 18K VIEWS!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!



18K VIEWS!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!



18k views in the last 7 days on my blog ledomduvin.com
THANK YOU SO MUCH !!!


I created this blog in 2008, 16 years ago already, with no other ambition but to share my tasting notes and wine knowledge, passion, and experiences.


I do not make any money out of it. I just write for the pleasure of writing and sharing. And I have always been independent. No sponsor, no product placement, no gift, no invitation, or anything else. I just write for the pleasure of sharing with whoever might be interested.


Over the years, I have been proudly astounded by the number of views, readers, and comments. These are the reasons that kept me going all these years, and I thank you for them. You are amazing!


The number of views on a weekly basis usually oscillates between a few hundred and a few thousand, which is already great. Yet, occasionally, these past few years, it has exceeded 10 thousand, like today with 18K, which is unbelievable.


You guys are incredible. You've made me very happy! 😁👍🍷


So, a huge THANK YOU to all of you, my followers, and readers.


Have a great day! Take care of yourself and your loved ones.


I raise my glass to all of you! Merci! 😁👍🍷💪👌👏


Cheers! Santé!


Dom


@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #wine #vin #vino #wein #blog #blogger #wineblog #proud #thankyou #merci


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LeDomduVin: Chateau Cheval Blanc Saint-Émilion Grand Cru 2018




Chateau Cheval Blanc 2018



The other day, I opened, tasted, and served this beauty of a wine. It was way too young, but what an incredible wine! 

It is almost a "sacrilege" to open such a young wine when you know it will definitely benefit from years, even decades, aging in the cellar. 

However, for some reason, I had been lurking at this bottle for a while and wanted to taste it. That night, I made up my mind and decided to open it for the host and his guest. 

What a coincidence when the guest arrived at the dinner with a bottle of Cheval Blanc 2011. I was like: "Wow, I must have read your mind, I opened a 2018 vintage for tonight!" Even the host was surprised by the coincidence. 

Once again, my instinct served me well, or the odds favored me. 😊👍🍷







2018 Chateau Cheval Blanc Saint-Émilion Grand Cru 


A blend of 54% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc, and 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2018 Cheval Blanc is a stunning wine! Offering a combination of ripe dark fruits and floral and mineral scents mingling with earthy, spicy, and oaky notes. It is fresh, rich, fruity, complex, sophisticated, elegant, structured, and textured. Well-balanced between the ripeness and richness of the fruit, the complex aromas, the refreshing acidity, and the present yet integrated and velvety tannins, it expands generously from the juicy attack, leading to the layered mid-palate till the lingering finish. A superb wine with great aging potential for those patient enough to wait for it! 

Cheers! Santé! 

Dom 

@ledomduvin #ledomduvin @chevalblancofficial #chevalblanc #saintemilion #saintemiliongrandcru #grandcru #bordeaux #redwine #tastingnotes #sommelier #sommelierlife #sommlife #ilovemyjob #wine #vin #vino #wein



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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

LeDomduVin: Nice line-up again - Clinet 2010, Margaux 1982 and La Mission Haut-Brion 2016




Nice line-up again - Clinet 2010, Margaux 1982 and La Mission Haut-Brion 2016



The other day, I opened, prepared, and served these 3 great wines:





Chateau Clinet Pomerol 2010


It has a deep, dark, ruby color. The nose is packed with ripe black and red fruit aromas mingling with earthy, spicy notes. The palate is generous, rich, and ample, with blackberry, redcurrant, and coffee flavors with earthy and oaky nuances. Despite its low acidity, slight roughness, present yet integrated tannins, and medium-long finish, it is an enjoyable example of this solar vintage. Although approachable now, it might benefit from a few more years in the cellar. Overall, it is a very nice wine.






Chateau Margaux Margaux 1982


One of the guests brought this bottle. And I was really pleased as 82 Bordeaux are rare nowadays. Surprisingly, it had another two capsules. At first, I feared I was a fake, so I inspected the label. Then, I removed the second capsule and processed to remove the cork, which was as soft as butter and broke despite being extremely cautious and using a double blade (shame I did not have my Durand). The bottom part fell into the bottle. It also had many sediments, so I had to decant it. Per my experience and knowledge, the capsule, cork, and label were all real. It was not a counterfeit. This bottle must have been capsuled with two capsules at the Chateau, as it occurred occasionally in the 80s (I have seen it on other Bordeaux wines).




This Margaux 82 displayed an advanced, bright, light brownish color. The beautiful, delicate, fresh, youthful nose filled the air with secondary and tertiary aromas of red cherry, leather, tobacco, licorice, and underbrush mingling with floral and oaky scents. The palate was delicate, finely chiseled, refined, elegant, and beautifully balanced, with a long finish. Magnificent wine!






Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion 2016


Too young, but what an incredible wine. Fresh, rich, concentrated, focused, racy & complex. Gorgeous! 






Cheers! Santé!

Dom

@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #vin #wine #vino #wine @chateauclinet #clinet #pomerol @chateaumargaux #chateaumargaux #margaux @chateaulamissionhautbrion #lamissionhautbrion #pessacleognan #graves #bordeaux #grandscrus #tastingnotes #sommelier #sommelierlife #sommlife #ilovemyjob



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Tuesday, June 4, 2024

LeDomduVin: "Le Type Rince"



"Le Type Rince"


« Le Type Rince » au lieu de « Le Petit Prince », fallait y penser. 

Je trouve ce jeu de mots hilarant.  Et je pense que Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, qui nous regarde sûrement du haut de son astéroïde (B 3..), doit aussi trouver ça marrant. Lui qui, à l’image de son petit prince, aimait les personnes qui font des choses utiles et qui s’occupent d’autres choses que d’elles-mêmes, tel que « L’Allumeur de Réverbère ».

Sommelier de métier, et qui plus est « français » (comprendre « buveur de vin ») et petit-fils de vigneron, un sourire se dessina immédiatement sur mon visage, puis se transforma en fou-rire à la vue de ce jeu de mots et du dessin qui l'accompagne (dans le style des dessins originaux du livre), admiratif et envieux devant cet humour intelligent.   

Admiratif de ce détournement humoristique d’un tel classique de la littérature.  Et envieux de ne pas y avoir penser avant, alors que j’aime faire des jeux de mots, le vin et le dessin (étant un dessinateur amateur à mes heures), ainsi que l’humour de situation.     

Amusant d’avoir transformé le petit prince en garçon de comptoir (ou caviste), avec son tablier, versant du vin dans des verres, et de l’avoir nommé « le type qui rince ».

Tu as la ref ? Tu sais ce que ça veut dire ? Non… Je t’explique. En langage familier, on dit d’un type « qu’il rince » quand il « paie sa tournée » (c’est-à-dire quand il prend en charge la consommation d’autrui dans un cadre convivial, festif et/ou occasionnel). Par exemple, dans un bar entre potes, tu vas dire : « Aller, c’est ma tournée ! C’est moi qui rince !» 




D’après Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, « Le Petit Prince » est un livre pour les enfants, mais qui a, en fait, été écrit à l’intention des grandes personnes. C’est un peu comme une réflexion du monde adulte à travers les yeux d’un enfant. 

Le Petit Prince est un petit garçon, habitant sur une astéroïde (B 612) avec trois volcans et une rose, qui avant d’arriver sur Terre va visiter plusieurs planètes et rencontrer des gens bizarres : un roi, un vaniteux, un buveur, un allumeur de réverbères, un géographe… et un renard sur Terre, ainsi que l’auteur, un aviateur tombé avec son avion en plein désert.  

Chaque planète (ou astéroïde) visitée et les personnages qui les habitent peuvent être perçue comme une allégorie de la nature humaine.

Un livre à lire et relire, qui pousse à l’imagination, aux rêves, à la réflexion et à se poser des questions aussi bien utiles qu’existentielles.   


Cheers! Santé

Dom 


@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #vin #wine #vino #wein #joke #playofwords #jeudemots #livre #book #lepetitprince #thelittleprince #letyperince #drawing #dessin

Merci @douelledereve pour la photo et l'inspiration de ce post.  

PS: C'est un copain qui a posté sur FB ce dessin qu'il a trouvé sur internet. Il ne pouvait pas créditer l'auteur car le site où il l'avait trouvé n'indiquait pas qui était l'auteur. Si l'auteur se reconnait je veux bien le créditer.  Pas sérieux s'abstenir. 


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Monday, June 3, 2024

LeDomduVin: Another "Trio de Choc"




Another "Trio de Choc"



I opened, tasted, and served these bottles over the weekend.





Louis Roederer Cristal Champagne 2012


Compared to the 2015 vintage I opened a few days ago, which was dry, crisp, light, and zesty, the 2012 is an absolute powerhouse: generous, opulent, rich and dense, complex and layered.

A blend of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay, this superb champagne offers rich and complex aromas of yellow and stone fruits mingling with warm toasted brioche notes and mineral nuances, developing from the nose to the chewable lingering finish. Absolutely loved it!

Where I found the 2015 needed some food, like oysters, the 2012 is a complete meal on its own. So satisfying!





Vincent Dancer Chassagne Montrachet Premier Cru "Tete du Clos" 2014


It was my first time tasting this wine, and this producer, I did not know.

It boasted a rich, deep yellow color. The nose was also rich and intense, displaying stone fruits, yellow apples, wheat, and stony earthiness combined with a haystack's “farm” scents. The palate was dense and ample, textured and structured, with the same aromas as on the nose, yet amplified by a saline, savory note. This wine was both interesting and intriguing.

It tasted like some of those "natural" wines. These barnyard, farmy notes are surely the result of his organic vineyards and hands-off approach in the cellar. His wines are fermented with wild yeasts, aged in barrel for 12-18 months, and bottled without fining or filtration. Tasting this wine triggered the need to taste more of his wines.






Domaine Tortochot Chambertin Grand Cru 2015


In the late 1990s, Chantal Tortochot-Michel took over from her father, Gabriel. She revitalized the estate and improved the winemaking processes to produce a range of vibrant, complex, yet approachable, fruit-forward wines that have the potential to age well.

This 2015 was an ode to the prestigious Chambertin vineyard. Advanced, light brownish color in the glass. Expressive nose, boasting aromas of black and red berries, licorice, and leather, with hints of spice and earth and mineral nuances. The palate is smooth, silky, leathery, earthy, well-balanced, and long. Loved it! It is a "classic" Burgundy.


Cheers! Santé!

Dom


@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #wine #vin #vino #wein @louisroederer #louisroederer #champagne @vincentdancer_chassagne #vincentdancer #chassagnemontrachet @domainetortochot #domainetortochot #chambertin #burgundy #tasting #tastingnotes #sommelier #sommelierlife #sommlife #ilovemyjob #wineyearly #lovewine



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Thursday, May 30, 2024

LeDomduVin: Cristal 2015, Droin Hommage à Louis 2021 & Haut-Brion 2008





Last night's wines: Cristal 2015, Droin Hommage à Louis 2021 & Haut-Brion 2008



I opened and served these wines for a private dinner.





Louis Roederer Cristal Champagne 2015


Light, refreshing, crisp, with razor-sharp acidity, it is satisfying but better with food (oysters, for example).





Jean-Paul et Benoît Droin Chablis Grand Cru "Hommage à Louis" 2021


Strangely, I would have loved to like it, but I found it a bit dull and lacking in substance, with a short finish. It's definitely not up to the standard of a Grand Cru, in my opinion. Too bad. I will need to revisit it with a new bottle to check if it was just a problem with this particular bottle.

PS: For those who did not know this Cuvée from Droin, it is a special Cuvée. It is supposed to be the pinnacle of Droin wines and one of Chablis's finest grand cru Cuvée. The name pays homage to "Louis Droin", who bought this plot in 1920. It was used for the first time for the 2020 vintage. It is a plot on "Les Clos" adjoining "Valmur", so normally It should be beautiful. And I like their wines in general. But this particular bottle, no. That's why I said I should taste it again; perhaps it was a bottle that suffered. However, the cork was good, as was the appearance and the nose. On the other hand, the taste was really disappointing: no substance, complexity, or length in the palate.




Chateau Haut-Brion Pessac-Léognan 2008


My tasting is biased because Haut-Brion is my favorite Bordeaux wine. Yet, again, it showed wonderfully. I loved it. It was opened for 1h30 before serving, and there was no decanting. It was perfect. It was so smooth and silky yet textured and structured, complex and rich yet elegant and sophisticated. It was really pleasurable.



Cheers! Santé!

Dom

@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #wine #vin #vino #wein @louisroederer_ #louisroederer #champagne #jeanpauletbenoitdroin #chablis #grandcru @chateauhautbrion_ #hautbrion #pessacleognan #bordeaux #tastingnotes #sommelier #sommelierlife #sommlife #wineyearly #ilovemyjob



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Friday, May 17, 2024

LeDomduVin: Partagas Serie D No 4






Partagas Serie D No 4



J'ai eu 51 ans le 10 Mai, et je me suis fumé un petit "Partagas Serie D No 4" pour fêter l'occasion. Elle est pas belle la vie? 😁👍

Laissez-moi vous conter comment m’est venu mon amour pour les cigares.

Contrairement à ce que peuvent penser beaucoup de gens, le rôle de Sommelier ne se cantonne pas qu'au vin (aux boissons en général), mais aussi à la nourriture et aux cigares.

En France, comme en Angleterre et en Suisse, la formation d’un Sommelier au Lycée Hôtelier comprend la connaissance approfondie, l’élaboration, la dégustation et le service de toutes les boissons : du vin au porto, du whisky aux spiritueux, du Saké aux liqueurs, des apéritifs aux digestifs, mais aussi des cafés, thés, chocolats et eaux minérales. Ainsi que la cuisine et ses techniques, les fromages bien sûr, mais aussi les cigares, et les accords entre eux.

Le rôle du Sommelier seconde souvent celui du Directeur de restaurant et du premier maitre d’hôtel, étant la personne qui propose et sert les apéritifs, conseille et sert les vins, propose et sert les fromages, ainsi que les digestifs et cigares en fin de repas.

Cette histoire aurait bien pu commencer lorsque je travaillais dans la restauration en France (1992-1997), mais c'est en Angleterre que j'ai appris à fumer et à apprécier le cigare, durant mes années Londoniennes (1997-2002), alors que je n'étais qu'un jeune Sommelier.






Je travaillais au "Monte's Club" (sur Sloane Street) qui se composait d'un bar à cocktails (au deuxième étage), un restaurant gastronomique géré par l'équipe d'Alain Ducasse (au premier étage), une discothèque (au sous-sol), et un cigare « shop/lounge » (au rez-de-chaussée).

C'est dans ce club que j'ai ouvert, gouté et servi certaines des plus belles bouteilles de ma carrière en devenir. Et c'est là aussi que j'ai commencé à m'intéresser aux cigares.

Je trainais souvent au "Cigar Shop" et nous avions aussi un très bel « humidor » pour les clients du restaurant et du bar. Mes mentors de l’époque, Tim McLaughlin-Green et Yves Sauboa, ainsi que Neil Millington, m’ont appris les bases et le reste est venu avec le temps et l’expérience.

Durant ces années, nous étions tout un groupe de français qui travaillaient dans les plus grands restaurants et hôtels de la capitale anglaise (Sommeliers, Serveurs, Bartenders, Directeurs et Maitre d’Hotels de Restaurant, Chefs et cuisiniers, etc…).

Nous nous retrouvions souvent pour faire des repas et des fêtes ensembles (avec certains de nos collègues Anglais et autres nationalités).

Le champagne et le vin coulaient à flot, la nourriture abondait et nous finissions régulièrement ces moments épicuriens avec un bon cigare accompagné d’un vieux porto ou un cognac, souvent apportés et conseillés par l’incroyable Georges dos Santos (alias JoJo - Antic Wine).

On était une sacrée équipe ! Tous âgés entre 20 et 30 ans, la plupart d’entre nous ont vécu les plus belles années de leur vie durant ces années-là. Nous liant d’une amitié qui a perduré malgré le temps et la distance et dure encore aujourd’hui.

Après « Monte’s », j’ai travaillé 3 mois « Les Ambassadeurs » (Hyde Park Corner), un Casino privé avec une très belle cave à vins et à cigares. Et pour finir, j’ai travaillé pendant 3 ans à « CHE » (St James Street), un restaurant, bar cocktails et cigare lounge, ou j’ai pu peaufiner mon expertise sur les cigares.

Mon ami et collègue, mixologiste extraordinaire, Eric Fossard, et moi allions souvent fumer un cigare l’après-midi durant notre « break » au bar d’un hôtel situé non loin. Eric m’a aussi beaucoup appris sur les cigares (et les cocktails).

A l’époque, mon cigare préféré était le « Partagas Serie D No 4 », un cigare de taille Robusto, puissant, rond et très aromatique dans lequel se mêlent les notes de café crémeux, de chocolat, avec des nuances boisées et épicées. Et ça l’est toujours.

Et c'est comme ça que je suis tombé amoureux des cigares.





Avec le flou on pourrait croire que je suis à New York. Mais non, je suis bien à Hong Kong.

J'ai arrêté la cigarette, il y a déjà quelques temps, mais j'avoue que j'aime bien me fumer un petit cigare de temps en temps, quand l'occasion se présente.

Pris du désir de fumer un cigare pour mon anniversaire, j'ai cherché sur internet un endroit où aller fumer un cigare tranquille à Hong Kong, et suis tombé sur le « Bertie Cigar Club », que je ne connaissais pas.

Le Bertie Club a l'embarras du choix avec une collection impressionnante de cigares en tous genres et de toutes provenances (Cuba, République Dominicaine, Honduras, US, Europe, etc.…), mais c’est en mémoire de mes années londoniennes que j’ai choisi un "Partagas Serie D No 4" pour célébrer mes 51 ans, que de souvenirs.

Je me suis donc fait ce petit plaisir à "Bertie" qui est un club cosy et sophistiqué, soigné et très confortable, avec une terrasse très agréable. Kudos à Mr Eric Piras (@eric.piras), le patron du Club, et à son équipe. Ce fut une très jolie expérience. C'etait ma première fois, et ce ne sera assurément pas la dernière.

Merci à vous toutes et tous pour vos messages pour mon anniversaire, sur les réseaux sociaux et sur whatsapp, c'est gentil et ça m'a fait très plaisir. 🙏😁👍🥂🍷😙


Cheers! Santé!

Dom


PS: Mr Piras, nous nous sommes croisés dans le couloir de Bertie, aujourd'hui. Vous m'avez dit bonjour, je vous ai répondu bonjour, mais nous n'avons pas discuté (car en fait, je ne vous connais pas et n'ai pas percuté que vous êtes le patron du Club). La prochaine fois que je vous vois, je me ferai un plaisir de discuter avec vous et de vous faire passer le bonjour de Hervé Pennequin (@hwinefrog)


@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #cigar @partagas_cigars #partagas #anniversaire #birthday #birthdaytreat #gifttomyself #goodtime



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Friday, May 10, 2024

LeDomduVin: Rébus

 


Rébus


Aujourd'hui est un jour un peu particulier pour moi et je n'ai pas pu résister à l'envie de vous faire un petit rébus (que j’ai créé moi-même) afin que vous deviniez pourquoi.

A vous de jouer ! 😉👍🍷

Cheers ! Santé !

Dom

@ledomduvin #ledomduvin #wine #vin #vino #wein #rebus #devinette #jeu #lesrebusadom #lescollagesadom #lescreationsadom #lesillustrationsadom #illustration #collage #creativite #creativity #imagination #keepcreating


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