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Visitors' wines of 2007

Bery Bros & Rudd

N.B. submissions for Wines of the Year have now closed.

final selections added 29th January

Jacques Lheritier, West Orange, NJ
Red: Chateau Prieure Lichine 1982
White: Ch. Ste Michelle, Indian Wells, Chardonnay 2005
Sweet: Domaine de Baumard, Quart de Cahumes 1998

Peter May, St Albans, England
Red: L'Avenir Estate (South Africa) Stellenbosch Pinotage 2004
White: The Ned (New Zealand) Waihopai River Sauvignon Blanc 2007
Budget red: Beyerskloof (South Africa) Stellenbosch Pinotage 2006
Budget white: Miguel Torres Viña Sol (Spain) Penedès 2006
Sweet: Dolce Winery Late Harvest (California) Napa Valley) 1998
Sparkling: Moutard Brut Cuvée des 6 Cépages (France) Champagne) 2002
Fortifie.: no award
Dud: Vergelegen Estate White (South Africa) Stellenbosch 2003
Thing: New Zealand.
Comment: So many good wines. Drunk lots of Beyerskloof's enjoyably gluggable 2006, and got very used to a half bottle of Vina Sol with lunch everyday while working in Barcelona. 2004 was L'Avenirs last Estate vintage and also last made by my friend Francois Naude, and it is superb. New Zealand was a wow and brought me back to Pinot Noir. First time I've ever been able to get hold of the Vergelegen White and it is either over-oaked or oxidised or both.

That Moutard Champagne - made with six different, permitted grapes in the Champagne region - is a wine that is both lovely and fascinating. Pity about the Vergelegen: this estate certainly has the potential to make the Cape's best white wine, so maybe there was a bit of an oxidisation fault as Peter suspects.


Phil Wilkins, UK
Red: Torbreck (Australia) RunRig Shiraz Viognier 1996
White: Huet (France) Vouvray Moelleux Le Haut-Lieu 1985
Budget red: Rustenberg (South Africa) John X Merriman 2004
Budget white: Laurenz and Sophie (Austria) Singing Gruner Veltliner 2006
Sweet: Kracher (Austria) #12 2002
Sparkling: None
Fortified: Quinta da Brunheda (Portugal) Colheita Port 1906
Dud: Kay Bros (Australia) Block 6 Shiraz 1996
Thing: Taking my eldest boy to see Black Sabbath - his first stadium gig!
Comment: The Torbreck RunRig was most spectacular but there could have been ½ a dozen red WOTY, the Huet was multi dimensional and could well have gone into the sweet section but it was the standout white just for me for pure finesse. A second year a row for the budget white is a Gruner Veltliner - such a stunning grape varital even at the lower price level while the John X Merriman could be the budget red every year. The Kracher #12 may be OTT for many folks but there is no denying the sheer power of this 4% sticky - I hope Gerhard will make wines this spectacular in the future (RIP Alios) while the 1906 Colheita Port was so incredibly young & amazingly complex for a 101 year old which leaves the awful Block 6 was an unmitigated disaster for such a fine wine that started its life so well, maybe the sparkling section could be dud as well as I just fail to enjoy the stuff which of course, is my problem! Taking your kids to any lively major event for the first time will always be a milestone in their lives. Roll on 2008…

Lovely mix of regions and styles here from Phil. Yet another "no award" for a sparkling wine - I think that's the seventh this year!


Toby Shillito, East Sussex UK
Red: Duca D'Aragona (Italy), Salento Rosso, 1999 / Domaine Matassa (France) Cuvée Romanissa 2005 Vins de Pays de Côtes Catalanes
White: Catena (Argentina), Chardonnay, 2004
Budget red: Darriaud (France), Cairanne, 2001
Budget white: Mandrarossa (Italy), Fiano, 2006
Sweet: Henriques and Henriques Sercial, 10 years old
Sparkling: Don't touch the stuff
Fortified: Nieport - any of four or five tasted this year, esp 10 year old
Dud: Domaine Alquier, (France), Faugeres, Les Bastides, 2001
Thing: Adopted daughter Jasmine, and nice big house in Sussex countryside
Comment: Don't drink a lot of Italian wine, so surprised myself to find 2 on the list. Nieport rocks. Could have placed any of 10 minor Rhone reds in the budget category. While I love the Catena, I expect there were finer whites if I think hard enough, but I like the way this chardonnay acts as the antidote to so much harm that new world styles do to the maligned Chardonnay. The Matassa will be great - too young by far when tasted, yet still elegant. Duca d'Aragona just sitting perfectly in its window. (Why no space for Rose?)

Congratulations on Jasmine. No apology needed for picking the Catena Chadonnay - for me they are the best producers of Chardonnay in Argentina. The Madarossa Fiano was also a Wine of the Week for me this year. Rosé? Yes, maybe we will add as an extra category next year.


Eric Lo, Hong Kong
Red: Lafite Rothschild (France), 1982
White: Chevalier Montrachet, Vincent Girardin (France), 2005
Budget red: Chainto Riserva, Badia di Passignano, 2001
Budget white: Chablis 1er Cru Cote de Lechet Dom D'Elise (France) 2005
Sweet: no award
Sparkling: Dom Perignon (France) 1999
Fortified: NOE Pedro-Ximenez Muy Viejo, Jerez, 30 y.o. , Gonzalez Byass (Spain)
Dud: no award
Thing: no award
Comment: 02 Chambertin, Jacques Prieur is my other choice. 03 Chardonnay, Estate Bottles, Tawse Winery, Niagara, Canada is a splendid white from Niagara which is not giving up any in front of a 01 Chev. Mont. from L. Latour! Drank a lot of nice stickies but none hit my sweet spot so far. Luckily I hadn't encountered real dud this year!

The '82 Lafite remains one of my all time great red wine experiences, and was my Wine of the Year a few years back. I'm also a big fan of Antinori's Badia di Passignano Riserva - a very beautiful wine normally


Stephen Locke, Wiltshire UK
Red: Palmer (France) 1967
White: Vincent Girardin (France)Corton-Charlemagne 2002
Budget red: Bodegas Borsao (Spain) Garnacha Campo de Borja Tres Picos 2002
Budget white: Cono Sur (Chile) Viognier 2005/6
Sweet: Y'Quem (France)1998
Sparkling: Roederer 1990
Fortified: Croft (Portugal) Porto Quinta da Roeda 1967
Dud: Domaine de Trevallon (France) Blanc 1997
Thing: Nikon D40 or iPod
Comment: My red and white wines of the year are not my 'best' wines consumed, but they were the most enjoyable - drunk at dinner with good friends. A significant birthday and managed to find 2 good wines from a difficult year. Trying to drink more 'non France' wines - but failing!

Another 40-year-old chooses his wines of the year :-) There are a lot of 1967 choices this year for some reason. And votes for Nikon cameras, which as a D50 user, I agree with entirely.

selections added 23rd January

Clive Holland, Hawkes Bay New Zealand
Red: Chateau Marbuzet (France) St Estephe 1947
White: Domaine Michelot (France) Meursault-Genevrieres 2000
Budget red: Brookfields (New Zealand) Ohiti Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
Budget white: Citra (Italy) Palio Pecorino 2006
Sweet: Inniskillen (Canada) Oak Aged Vidal Icewine 2002
Sparkling: Veuve Cliquot Ponsardin (France) Champagne 1996
Fortified: Chambers (Australia) Rutherglen Rare Muscadelle NV
Dud: Chateau Latour (France) Pauillac 1983 Corked
Thing: Kathmandu Camera Tripod (can be screwed to top of a wine bottle)
Comment: A pity not to be able to include all the great reds I tasted in Italy this year especially the Brunellos of 1997 and a great Sassicaia 02

Nice blend of old, classic Europe and cutting edge Mew World here. Veuve Cliquot's 2006 vintage is in my cellar too, and now looks a relative bargain for a serious Champagne.


Jon Atkinson, Liverpool
Red: Bodegas Altaïr (Chile) Totihue Valley 2003
White: Stefano Inama (Italy) Vigneto du Lot Soave Classico 2003
Budget red: Boutinot (France) 'les Côtes Sauvages' Cairanne 2003
Budget white: Quinta da Murta (Portugal) Bucelas Branco 2006
Sweet: Ch. d'Yquem (France) Sauternes 1999
Sparkling: Taitinger (France) Brut NV
Fortified: Emilio Hidalgo (Spain) very old Fino (from butt at the Bodega)
Dud: Nothing vinous!
Thing: Visiting Jerez & Sevilla for my wife's 40th
Comment: Altaïr is a particularly polished, Bordeaux styled wine - the best South American red I have ever encountered! Soave can and should be taken seriously - Garganega has massive potential. Gorgeously fragrant Rhône for a tenner. An ultra-reliable, interesting Portuguese white! d'Yquem - nuff said although Peter Lehmann's botrytis semillon is superb VFM. I have always steered clear of Taitinger, but given a glass blind, it was rich and creamy - I suspect that it had been given quite a bit of additional bottle aging before opening! 20 Years since I was last in Jerez - so much has changed, and there is no way that I will wait another 20 till my next visit, but until then or at least until it gets a bit warmer Wapping Beers winter ale brewed here in Liverpool is just superb - Salud!

Nice to see a Sherry taking a gong from Jon (we seem to have so few compared to the Ports and Madeira's in the fortified category) - and thanks for the tip on the beer!


David Ludlow, Berkshire, UK
Red: Chateau La Lagune 1990
White: Pieropan La Rocca Soave 2004
Budget red: Delas Cotes du Rhone 2005
Budget white: La Motte Piernieff Organic Sauvignon Blanc 2007
Sweet: Rivesaltes Ambre Hors d'Age Tradicio 1982
Sparkling: Salon 1982
Fortified: Cosart & Gordan Malmsey Maderia 1998
Dud: None
Thing: Nikon D40 Camera & holding a bottle of Ch Lafite 1918
Comment: Very difficult really to choose just one wine in each category. I was also fortunate to have the chance to taste Ht Brion '81 and Lafite '83 which were excellent notwithstanding the vintages. I would also rave about anything from Vergelegan and Ken Forrestor FMC Chenin Blanc is a sublime wine, but I opted to give it to the Soave which really opened my mind to great Italian wines.

Pity you only held the 1918 Lafite David :-) Nice choices, and there have been a couple of votes for Ken Forrester's brilliant Chenin and for Vergelegen, so those are covered.


Jeremy Wilkinson, Surrey
Red: Chateau Latour (France) Paulliac 1961
White: Eben Sadie (South Africa) Palladius 2005
Budget red: Sequillo (South Africa) 2003
Budget white: TMV (South Africa) White
Sweet: Chateau D'Yquem (France) 2001
Sparkling: Philliponnat Clos De Goisses (France) Champagne 1996
Fortified: Matusalem
Dud: Tend to forget these
Thing: Passing my WSET Diploma
Comment: Sadly three of my choices (the French ones) were tastes rather than glasses or bottles but all three were spectacular. Surprisingly South African selection this year, I know who I blame.......

Contratulations on the Diploma Jeremey. Is that the third or fourth vote for the 1961 Latour? I had a bottle of the Clos de Goisses 1996 on New Year's Eve and it was superb I must say.


Peter Wood, Cupar, UK
Red: Musigny (France) Mugnier 1995
White: Rolly-Gassmann (France) Tokay Pinot Gris Rotleibel VT 1996
Budget red: Casa de Mouraz (Portugal) Tinto 2004
Budget white: Black Tower Riesling 2006 - wasn't as bad as I thought it would be!
Sweet: Crown Estates (Hungary) Tokaji 5 putts 1993
Sparkling: Taittinger (France) Comte de Champagne 1971
Fortified: Taylors (Portugal) Vintage Port 1927
Dud: 2003 by Bollinger (see comments)
Thing: While it may make me appear like an old man, my slippers! They are so comfy.
Comment: My wine drinking year ended with the flop that was 2003 by Bollinger. A terrible wine that appears to be nothing but a marketing exercise by this Champagne house. I was fortunate to try a 1927 Taylors port with an 80 year old gentleman celebrating his birthday. His father had put 2 cases aside for when he was a child and over his life he has drunk them all. It had been open for 2 days but it was still great. Krug and Pol Roger Sir Winston 1996 were stunning, with the Taittinger Comte '71 just getting the nod as Champagne, and wine, of the year.

Interesting to see the 2003 by Bollinger getting another 'dud' award here from Peter. I wish I'd bought one so that I could see for myself what this controversial wine was all about!


Andrew Stevenson, Lancaster, UK
Red: Chateau Christina, (California, Carmel Valley) Cabernet Sauvignon Russell Vineyard 2002
White: Josko Gravner (Italy, Friuli), Breg, 2000
Budget red: Abadia Retuerta (Spain), Selección Especial, 2003
Budget white: Tamada (Georgia), Mtsvane, 2005
Sweet: Oremus (Hungary), Tokaji Essencia 1995
Sparkling: Ruinart (France), Dom Ruinart Blanc de Blancs 1993
Fortified: Pedro Romero (Spain) Palo Cortado Viejisimo Prestige 50 V.O.R.S.
Dud: Corked and otherwise faulty wines
Thing: The great company and generosity of fellow members of the UK Wine Forum at offlines.
Comment: Chateau Christina was a chance discovery (the result of a bizarre coincidence) while touring the vineyards of California. Most of the Ch. Christina wines were the stars of that fortnight, and it seems this particular wine was the star of the year, narrowly pipping the 1961 Latour at the wine-pages/Pebbles off-line. The Breg from Gravner was the third time I'd had the 2000 and this bottle was the best of the lot - really singing and delicious as well as highly idiosyncratic. Even better this was drunk at the end of a lunch at a local Italian restaurant, when the chef brought out two bottles (the other was an unfortunately faulty Radikon Oslavje) he'd been looking to open for ages, and he decided to share them with us: so it could almost count as the budget white! I was finding it difficult to find a budget red (maybe I drink too much white wine?), until I noticed that the Abadia Retuerta fell into the under £15 bracket. Budget white was much easier: it really is a super wine, bursting with character. And with the wine-pages discount at Laithwaites, it was a real bargain at £5.50 a bottle. The Oremus Essencia tied with a 2002 Eschendorfer Lump Riesling Eiswein from Horst Sauer, which was astoundingly good, but the Essencia was simply on a different plane - sublime and utterly ethereally good. There have not been any really outstanding sparkling wines this year. The two top ones were both at offlines: the Ruinart BdB and a 1976 Diebolt-Vallois BdB; and there's not a great deal to choose between them. It was interesting to see that several bottles of the 2006 Nivole Moscato d'Asti weren't too far behind. I was positive that the fortified wine of the year was going to be the 2005 Pintas port. But the superb Prestige 50 Palo Cortado from Pedro Romero just slipped in by being opened on New Year's Eve. I struggled over dud for a while, as there were a few truly awful wines this year (think low 60s on the Parker scale): a combination of poor winemaking from the wrong grapes in the wrong region. But it's too invidious to name them.

Interesting and considered choices from Andrew as always. Delighted to see the Tamada from Gerogia in there: I'm off to Georgia again this year, as Chairman of the National Wine Competition, which I helped them set up for the first time in 2006. As Russia continues to impose a blanket ban on imports of all Georgian wine, widely seen as a political move, it is great to see their wines receiving some support from UK wine lovers.

selections added 18th January

Matthieu Guinard, France, Paris
Red: Brumont (France) La Tyre 2005
White: Cotat (France) La Grande Cote 1989
Budget red: Nekowitsch (Austria) Zweigelt 2006
Budget white: Feiler-Artinger (Austria) Cuvée Gustav 2000
Sweet: Feiler-Artinger (Austria) Jonathan Ruster Ausbruch Essenz 2005
Sparkling: Salon (France) S de Salon 1996
Fortified: Bertrand Bergé (France) Rivesaltes Ambré 2005
Dud: Armand-Rousseau (France) Ruchottes-Chambertin 1998
Thing: no award
Comment: It has been a very special year for me. Lots of discovery and the begining of studying wine trade in Dijon... more to come !!

Congratulations on the wine course in Dijon Matthieu - I suspect there will be lots of wines from Burgundy in the list next year - even though they didn't do too well this year!


Ben Coffman, London, UK
Red: R. Lopez de Heredia (Spain) Rioja Bosconia Reserva 1976
White: William Fevre (France) Chablis 1er cru Montée de Tonnerre 2000
Budget red: Domaine les Grands Bois (France) Côtes du Rhône Villages Cairanne 2003
Budget white: René Michel (France) Viré Clessé, Burgundy 2000
Sweet: Chateau Climens (France) Barsac 1991
Sparkling: none - all rubbish
Fortified: no award
Dud: Domaine Les Pallieres (France) Gigondas 1998
Thing: no award
Comment: Despite the best of the 1961s at that offline, the Lopez de Heredia Rioja just shaded the 1961 Latour for me, perhaps as I no real expectations? Truly delicious and stunningly featherlight on the palate. The 1991 Climens was a wonderful surprise from a year when many declassified. The Pallieres was just boring - shame for a good producer (Brunier) in a good vintage.

Well what do i say on that comment on Sparkling wine of the year!!! :-) Are you sure you've tasted enough Ben?


Ian Amstad, London
Red: Domaine Leroy (France) Grands Echezeaux 1964
White: Coche Dury (France) Meursault 1997
Budget red: Chateau Potensac (France) Medoc 1996
Budget white: FMC Chenin Banc, South Africa
Sweet: Zind Humbrecht (France) Pinot Gris Clos Windsbuhl 1998
Sparkling: no award
Fortified: no award
Dud: Chateau Pavie Decesse (France) 1999
Thing: no award
Comment: Virtually bought nothing but it was a memorable year for drinking fine wines. The Leroy was spellbinding and illustrative of the heights red burgundy can scale. It just pipped the Hermitage La Chapelle 1978 for the award. Right behind were a bevvy of outstanding young clarets: Leovilles-Lascases 1982 and 1986, Mouton-Rothschild 1986, Lafite 1989, Montrose 1990, La Mission Haut-Brion 1989, Le Pin 1999 and Vieux Chateau Certan 1998 were obvious candidates...but two unfashionable first grwoths - Mouton-Rothschild 1987 and Latour 1983 were a revelation too. It was the year that I finally fell in love with Gaja...the 1971 Sori San Lorenzo was exquisite, while the 1986 straight Barbaresco on Christmas Day was rivetting. Another disappointment was Amon Ra (2004) - an amorphous, alcoholic blob of a wine.

Lovely choices here with wines that I really love too, like the fantastic Chenin Blanc from Ken Forrester, and the delicious and classic Potensac 1996. I really liked the Amon-Ra when I tasted it on release, but alcoholic and amorphous blob doesn not sound very appealing! I must try to taste it again.


Chris Sweeney, Germany
Red: Château de Beaucastel (France) S Rhone 1990
White: none
Budget red: Laibach The Ladybird Organic (S Africa) Stellenbosch 2005
Budget white: Umani Ronchi Le Busche (Italy) Marche 2005
Sweet: Yquem (France) Sauternes 1997
Sparkling: Louis Roderer Cristal (France) Champagne 1990
Fortified: none
Dud: none
Thing: £25 for Clos Des Papes 1990 from the Wine Society!!
Comment: Interesting year - spending 8 weeks in Africa (working hard) including a fantastic few weeks in Cape Town and the very cheap and excellent quality food and wines. Also enjoyed a great meal at The Square in London (Yquem 97 by the glass) and also had a great relaxing break with good food and wine (Haut Brion 97) at Hipping Hall near Kirby Lonsdale. Looking forward to more great wines in 2008 and hopefully writing more TN's and participating a bit more on the Wine Pages forums.

Fine choices, and nice to see wo many of them enjoyed in the context of a great meal rather than the more clinical setting of a formal tasting.


Paul Anderson, Scotland
Red: Jean Raphet (France) Charmes-Chambertin 1996
White: Domaine Barmes-Buecher (France) Riesling Steingrübler GC 2004
Budget red: Ernest Burn (France) Pinot Noir 2002
Budget white: Bruno Sorg (France) Muscat Pfersigberg GC 2005
Sweet: Chateau Lafaurie-Peyraguey (France) Sauternes 1997
Sparkling: Drappier (France) Champagne Grande Sendrée 1996
Fortified: None
Dud: None
Thing: Stranglers Gig, Glasgow
Comment: A slight drift from Burgundy to Alsace for me this year, having tasted a few outstanding Alsace wines. They also offer spectacular vfm when compared to Burgundy prices. I also tried to find a new world wine to fit into my woty selection but they just didn't quite reach the heights of the French. The Sorg Muscat was only 10 Euro, which is amazing for a GC. Barmes-Buecher was an excellent find as they make wines biodynamically that show a real expression of the vintage and terroir. Raphet, although now retired, is still one of my favourites that was affordable. The Burn Pinot just showed real purity of fruit and balance (and was only 7 Euro). Both Drappier and Lafaurie-Peyraguey consistently deliver excellent wines. The Stranglers were in amazing form and played the same set they played at the Apollo in '77 (which was my first Stranglers gig). I was still grinning with the memory a few days later.

Alsace, Burgundy, Bordeaux and Champagne show very refined classic tastes - reflected so aptly in paul's choice of music :-)


Regan McCaffery, Auckland, New Zealand
Red: Chateau Latour (France) Pauillac 1947 Magnum
White: Trimbach (France) Pinot Gris VT 1990 375ml
Budget red: Domaine Segular (France) Cuvee Jean Julian 2004
Budget white: Palliser Estate (New Zealand) Pinot Gris 2006
Sweet: Chateau Climens (France) Sauternes 2001
Sparkling: Dom Perignon (France) 1982
Fortified: no award
Dud: 2003 by Bollinger (France) 2003
Thing: no award

47 Latour from magnum, eh? Impressive! I never tasted the special one-off '2003 by Bollinger' from a hugely hot and ripe year, but I know Tom Stevenson really liked it, whislt noting how 'un-Bollinger' it was.

selections added 15th January

Keith Prothero, London and Cape Winelands
Red: Chateau Latour (France)Pauillac 1961
White: Vernay Condrieu Coteau de Vernon(France) Rhone 1996
Budget red: Clot de L'Oum Numero Uno (France) Roussillon 2003
Budget white: Rudera Robusto chenin (South Africa) 2005
Sweet: Chateau Climens (France) Bordeaux 1989
Sparkling: not a drop!!
Fortified: KWV vintage port (South Africa) 1948
Dud: Chateau Cheval Blanc (France) 1961
Thing: Pebbles Project now supporting over 280 kids,due significantly to support from the UK Wine Forum.
Comment: A memorable year of wine drinking.Documented carefully this year, to determine units consumed.Some may think too many, but the sheer pleasure in drinking fine wine, normally in great company, overrides any health concerns. Loved that Latour, possibly the finest thimble full of wine I have ever drunk!!--------and the most expensive. Thanks as always to members of the UK Wine Forum for their invaluable contribution to my wine knowledge and especially Tom for making this gathering of friends possible.

That '61 Latour was my runner up for Wine of the Year, served by Keith at a charity tasting and dinner for the Pebbles childrens charity in South Africa. As was the dud Cheval Blanc unfortunately!


Dave Emery, Sydney, Australia
Red: Penfolds (Australia) RWT Shiraz 2004
White: Pieropan (Italy) Soave Classico 2003?
Budget red: Hardy's (Australia) Oomoo Shiraz 2001
Budget white: Petaluma (Australia) Hanlin Hill Riesling 2003
Sweet: Oremus (Hungary) Tokaji 5 puttonyos 1995?
Sparkling: Gosset (France) Champagne Grande Reserve NV
Fortified: Cockburn (Portugal) Port 1963
Dud: Mystery Dessert Wine of Dubious Provenance, Unknown Vintage and Producer
Thing: Dinner at Tetsuya's, Sydney
Comment: The Soave was at a restaurant and the Tokaji at a tasting so the years are slight guesses - sorry! The Oomoo was great value a few years ago and has aged nicely, as has the Petaluma. It was a wonderful pleasure to be able to taste the Cockburn - thanks to some cellar thinning from UK Wine Forum fellow member Chris Smith! The RWT was run close by a superb Gevrey-Chambertin and by the 2002 Grange. And the mystery dessert wine was accorded its own DNPIM tasting note on the UK Wine Forum!

Very nice bunch of wines here - isn't Gosset's Grand reserve a great wine at a reasonable price? Unfortunately I am still trying to secure a table at Tetsuya's when I visit Sydney in just a few of weeks time!


Peter Allinson, UK
Red: Cote Rotie, Champet 1995
White: Reisling, Gueberschwihr.(Zind Humbrecht) 1994
Budget red: Alameda Merlot (Chile) 2006
Budget white: no award
Sweet: Chateau Liot 2001
Sparkling: Cray Brut, Montlouis 2001
Fortified: Fonseca 1977
Dud: Any 1999 Dry white from France if you have any Drink it!!!
Thing: Sky Plus

Chateau Liot is a much underrated Sauternes wine I think - the couple of vintages I've tried have been excellent and very modestly priced.


David Crossley, Brighton, UK
Red: Chave Hermitage '91
White: strangely, I'd say Planeta's Cometa 04
Budget red: Aosta Fumin, Cave des Onze Communes (03/04)
Budget white: Ceretto Blanghe (Langhe Bianco)
Sweet: Clos Lapeyre Jurancon
Sparkling: Pol 98
Fortified: Nothing fantastic comes to mind
Dud: Lots of Veuve (boring/overpriced)
Thing: discovering Japan
Comment: The Chave beats Léoville Barton 1990 (sadly way too young) and Mascarello 1978 for its animal passion (despite the vintage). I loved the Cometa despite some v. good white (pox-less) burgundy and Grosset riesling in 07. I always enjoy the Fumin (brought back lots last visit). It was a great year for Champagne consumption but the Pol has real potential. Finally, I'm in love with Japan, despite an alcohol-lite visit. Can't wait to go back.

Another Jurancon, which is great to see - maybe southwest France is the dark horse in this year's 'popular regions stakes'. I was foiled in my attempts to stop over in Japan for a few days en route to Australia this year, but hopefully next time...


Ed Stafford, London, UK
Red: Chateau Lynch Bages (France) Pauillac 1961
White: Meursault Sous le dos d'Ane 2000, Domaine Leflaive (Burgundy)
Budget red: Chateau D'Argadens (France) 2003, Bordeaux Superieur
Budget white: de Stefano (Italy) Pinot Grigio 2006
Sweet: Chateau d'Yquem (Sauternes) 2001
Sparkling: Krug (Champagne) Collection 1985
Fortified: Grahams (Portugal) 1977 Vintage Port
Dud: Chateau Latour (France) 1995 CORKED!!!!
Thing: Shure noise-cancelling earphones / Planet Earth on Blu Ray

I drank the Krug 1985 a couple of times this year, though not the "collection", but regular bottles purchased on release around 1992. One was sublime, the other didn't knock my socks off - but I've a couple left so will try again soon!


Ian Webb, Leicester, UK
Red: Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup (France) Cuveé Guilhem Gaucelm 1998
White: Domaines Chavy (?) (France) Puligny-Montrachet 1ere Cru Les Folatières, 1986
Budget red: Mas Brunet (France) Cuveé Prestige Coteaux du Languedoc, Terrasses du Larzac 2005
Budget white: Domaines Lurton (France) Chateau Bonnet, AOC Bordeaux Blanc 2005
Sweet: Chateau Coutet (France) AOC Sauternes 1971
Sparkling: Krug (France) Champagne Vintage 1990
Fortified: Chateau de la Peyrade (France) "Barrique Oublieé" Muscat de Frontignan
Dud: Mas de Daumas Gassac (France) Grande Cuvee 2001 VdP de l'Herault
Thing: Modern Flamenco at Montpelier and Eric Truffaz playing Jazz under the stars in a Roman quarry
Comment: Difficult to choose, but heavilly biased by my year working for a wine producer in Languedoc. I could easily write down 10 budget reds and whites, and then ten minutes later write down ten more that were just as good! All under £6 a bottle! Thanks to the Ravailles for putting up with me and all my questions.

Yes, Languedoc (and Roussillon) is definitely still a region to watch on all sorts of levels I think. Another fine vintage of Krug gets the nod. They and Pol Roger are definitely leading the fizz race this year.

selections added 11th January

Jules van Cruysen, Wellington, New Zealand
Red: Armand Rousseau (France) Charmes Chambertin Grand Cru 2002
White: Neudorf (Neslon, New Zealand) Moutere Chardonnay 2005
Budget red: Perrigrine (Central Otago, NZ) Saddleback Pinot Noir 2006
Budget white: Henri Bourgeois (France) La Petit Bourgeois, Sauv Blanc 2006
Sweet: Chateau d'Yquem (France) Sauterne 1967
Sparkling: Marc Bredif (France) Vouvray Demi Sec NV
Fortified: Lusteau Oloroso 1989
Dud: Perrigrine (Central Otago, New Zealand) Pinnacle Pinot Noir 2005
Thing: Remy Robert James van Cruysen - My son, now almost 6 months
Comment: I suppose it is a lot of French Wine for a Kiwi - but I tend to be taken by things that are different to what I normally drink/taste and I taste a whole lot of Kiwi wine. I just wish it was more than one wine per category - so difficult. As for my 'dud' its a great wine, just not worth what they expect you to pay for it/what you would have to charge for it on a wine list.

Pergerine in Central Otago scoop an award and a "dud" nomination, for two different bottlings of Pinot Noir which is interesting here. I think that's the second nimination for '67 Yquem which makes me wish I'd splashed out on a bottle in Selfridges many years ago at £300, as it's a significant year in my house too, and now cost the best part of £1,000!


Charles Morgan, London, UK
Red: Chave Hermitage 1991
White: Zind Humbrecht Riesling Brand VT 1990
Budget red: Tollot Beaut Chorey Les Beaune 2002
Budget white: Schloss Gobelsburg Riesling 2005
Sweet: Zind Humbrecht Tokay Pinot Gris Clos Windsbuhl 1994
Sparkling: Billecart Salmon Rose
Fortified: Quinta do Noval Vintage Port 1931
Dud: Gentaz Dervieux Cote Rotie Cote Blonde 1991
Thing: Wines of the Northern Rhone John Livingstone Learmonth
Comment: The Chave was not the best wine of the year, but it was by far the most surprisingly good, enjoyable and impressive in the context. For like reasons, the Gentaz did nothing for me and was a surprise I wasn't expecting. There were plenty of runners up in all categories except Champagne!

A very classical French collection, but who could argue: the Tollot-Beaut Chorey 2004 was one of my favourite budget wines of last year, and that 1994 Windsbuhl from Zind-Humbrecht is a former White Wine of the Year for me.


Fabio Cimmino, Naples, Italy
Red: Ripe del Falco Riserva Cirò Classico Superiore 1991 IPPOLITO
White: Riesling Auslese trocken "R" 2001 KOHELER RUPRECHT
Budget red: Krasi' 2004 CARROZZO Salento IGT (Negroamaro)
Budget white: Verdicchio di Matelica 2006 COLLESTEFANO
Sweet: Vin Santo 1996 Fattoria di Bacchereto
Sparkling: Asprino d'Aversa Brut METODO CLASSICO 1997 GROTTA DEL SOLE
Fortified: (not fortified) Solera 1830 Pedro Ximenez ALVEAR
Dud: Supertuscans... "super" only for the price!
Thing: Gomorra - book written by Roberto Saviano
Comment: No italian wines in Your list ?! Why ? Give a chance.

Be fair Fabio - there's a whole world of wine out there! I had two from France, two from Spain and one each from Australia, Argentina and Portugal in my selections, which is not a bad spread :-) I'll try harder next year!


John Lamond, Scotland
Red: Volnay 1er Cru Santenots 2002, Roger Belland (France)
White: Riesling, Les Comtes d'Eguisheim 1997, Leon Beyer (France)
Budget red: Yalumba "Y" Series Shiraz/Viognier 2005 (Australia)
Budget white: no award
Sweet: Chateau Jolys Epiphanie 2000, Jurancon (France)
Sparkling: Marques de Monistrol Gran Reserva Cava Rose (Spain)
Fortified: Fonseca 1970
Dud: Woodhaven Shiraz Rose 2006 (California)
Thing: Nokia E90 - & Nintendo Wii which my daughter got from Santa
Comment: The Monistrol is there, not because it is a world-beating wine, but because it is such FANTASTIC value. the Co-op gives it away for £ 4.99 twice a year. The Riesling just might be the finest riesling I have ever tasted. and the Woodhaven was dire, not out of condition, just poor wine.

That Marques de Monistrol Gran Reserva is a very nice wine - I'll try a bottle or two if I see it at £4.99 in future! Isn't the Wii great fun?


Colin Bradley, West Yorkshire, UK
Red: A&F Gros (Burgundy) Clos de Vougeot Grand Maupertui 1990
White: Muller-Catoir (Germany) Scheurebe Halbtrocken 1990
Budget red: Any number of Loire Cab Francs at £8-£9 apiece
Budget white: Ch Haut Bergey 1998 (Pessac-Leognan)
Sweet: Bourillon-d'Orleans (Loire) Vouvray Moelleux La Coulee d'Or 1990
Sparkling: Krug 1988
Fortified: Blandy's Terrantez 1975 (Madeira)
Dud: no award
Thing: My new carbon-fibre road-bike, acquired from Keith Prothero
Comment: A list cobbled quickly together from memory, without reflection - I suppose that means it must consist of wines that truly made an impression. The Clos de Vougeot and the Terrantez were both enjoyed courtesy of forumites at off-lines. Other great reds included many Italians and some very nice clarets. The Muller-Catoir wasn't the greatest white I drank last year but it was one of the most memorable, for its truly extraordinary, ripe, scheurebe grapefruity-ness. The Haut Bergey is in the budget category only because I bought it at French supermarket price, but it was very lovely. My wife treated us to the Krug at the wonderful Hipping Hall; a close runner-up in the fizz stakes was Drappier Grande Sendree 1989. We had many good sweet wines last year but I really liked that Vouvray. Lastly, many thanks for the bike, Keith!

Lovely to see a white Bordeaux featuring, as these are some of my favourite white wines yet they rarely get a lot of recognition. I loved the Terrantez Vintage 1977 from Blandy's, which I also tasted last year.


Tommy Hansen, Oslo
Red: Ch Leoville Poyferre (France)Ch Leoville Poyferre 1918
White: Molitor (Germany) Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling AusleseTrocken 1990
Budget red: Ch. Unang (France) Cotes du Ventoux 2005
Budget white: Domaine de L'Ecu (France) Muscadet Cuvee Classique 2006
Sweet: Domäene Müller (Austria) Blauer Wildbacher TBA 2000
Sparkling: Champagne Lamiable (France) Lamiable Extra Brut NV
Fortified: Barbeito (Portugal) Barbeito Malvasia 1834
Dud: no award
Thing: no award

And madeira continues a really strong showing this year, with an 1834 from one of my favourite producers, Barbeito.

selections added 8th January

Mark Carrington, Dorset, England
Red: Lake's Folly Cabernets '94 'reserve'
White: Nikolaihof Gruner Veltliner Vinotek '91
Budget red: Petit Bourgeois [Cab F] VdP de la Jardin H Bourgeois '05
Budget white: Langenloiser Berg-Vogelsang Trocken G V Brundlmayer '05
Sweet: Rieussec '03
Sparkling: Nivole '06
Fortified: Graham '66
Dud: Seppelt Show Sparkling Shiraz '90
Thing: Watching The Ashes from the Hill @ SCG.
Comment: The Nikolhaihof was tipped on the UK Wine Forum. In combination with location & company [took Mrs C to Summer Lodge for lunch, on her birthday) the prohibitive cost worth every penny. The Rieussec: a throw back to what I suspect the '76 was like in it's youth? Graham's was in pristine condition, I believed shipped direct. The Sparkling Shiraz caused a near riot at our tasting group. 'Disgusting' was the politest description, IIRC.
Thing: a childhood ambition fullfilled.
Comment: And not a PN or Riesling in sight.

I'm not too familiar with most of these choices, though I do love the Nivole Moscato, with its minimal alcohol and ethereal flavours. Glad the childhood ambition was fulfilled - whatever it was!


Henning Bakken, Norway
Red: Marchesi di Barolo (Italy) Barolo Riserva Grande Annata 1982
White: Bonneau de Martray (France) Corton Charlemagne 1987
Budget red: Cavalotto (Italy) Langhe Nebbiolo 2004
Budget white: Schloss Gobelsburg (Austria) Gobelsburger RIesling 2005
Sweet: Georg Breuer (Germany) Berg Rottland Auslese Goldkapsel 2005
Sparkling: Lanson Gold Label 1996 (France) Champagne
Fortified: Barbeito (Portugal) Malvasia Madeira 1900
Dud: no award
Thing: no award
Comment: Great mature Barolo and Burgundy on my list this year. The Madeira was a very special experience. Sorry it was only the one glas, but the aftertaste went on forever.

It was a year when I visited Madeira and tasted some extraordinary old wines (1908 Cossart & Gordon Bual was in my list), and several of those were the most profound wine experiences. Glad to see the Lanson 1996 is drinking well, as I have several in the cellar waiting patiently...


Craig Walker, Fife
Red: Robert Chevillon (France) Nuits St Georges 1ER Les Pruliers 1999
White: Leeuwin (Australia) Art Series Chardonnay 2000
Budget red: Barthod (France) Bourgogne Rouge 2002
Budget white: Albert Bichot (France) Bourgogne, Dom du Pavillon 2005
Sweet: Chateau Suduiraut (France) 1999
Sparkling: Pol Roger (France) 1996
Fortified: Taylor's (Portugal) Vintage Port 1977
Dud: Jaboulet (France) La Chapelle, Hermitage 1999
Thing: My family, The Lives of Others, Rome (Series 2) , Serena Sutcliffe's 'Wines of Burgundy'
Comment: This was quite a landmark for me in terms of wine. My attention was almost exclusively placed towards the old world with particular focus on red Burgundy (now that I finally feel reasonably confident with it). Never have I ever so ruthlessly researched wines before commiting to a purchase as I have in the past twelve months. Yet as my wine interest soared my wine consumption actually declined. Finally, I remain grateful of and impressed with the largely civilized and gracious nature of the UK Wine Forum. Many thanks Tom.

And many thanks to Craig and all the regulars on the UK Wine Forum for your contributions. Nice to see the revitalised domaine of Albert Bichot getting a gong - that Bourgogne is a cracking little wine.


Patrick Hilyer, Normandy, France
Red: Château L'Evangile (France) Pomerol 2002
White: Pascal Moreau (France) Chablis 1er cru 2005
Budget red: Clos Poggiale (Corsica) Corse 2001
Budget white: Alain Beal (France) Beaujolais Blanc 2005
Sweet: Alain Brumont (France) Gros Manseng 2004
Sparkling: Veuve Cliquot (France) Champagne 1996
Fortified: Dow (Portugal) 1970
Dud: Clos Ornasca (Corsica) Ajaccio 2000
Thing: The Complete Works of Saki
Comment: I could have choosen from Pavie '99, Mouton '99, Leoville-L-C '99 or Chapoutier La Bernadine CDP '05 as top red but really Evangile was my favourite.

Fine choices here, and nice to find another fan of the often overlooked sweet wines of France's southwest - some of my favourite dessert wines.


Jan-Tore Egge, Lillehammer, Norway
Red: Giovanni Conterno (Italy) Barolo Cascina Francia 1999
White: Gérard Duplessis (France) Chablis Les Clos 2004
Budget red: Domaine Grégoire (France) Bourgueuil 2005
Budget white: Villa Chiòpris (Italy) Tocai Friulano 2005
Sweet: Kracher (Austria) Welschriesling TBA No. 6 1998
Sparkling: Jacquesson (France) 1996
Fortified: Niepoort (Portugal) Vintage Port 2003
Dud: Nicolas Joly (France) Savennières Les Vieux Clos 2004
Thing: New car: having driven old cars so far (the last one from 1985), we bought a new one; should be good for trips to wine regions. Winewise: trip to Champagne and discovering the wines of Jura.
Comment: It's very difficult to decide on a clear winner for sweet wine, but I thought I Kracher wine would be appropriate given his untimely departure. I seem to have stocked up a few sweeties this year.

The tributes to Alois Kracher continue, and that is fitting as he really was a great winemaker. Congratulations on the new car - hope this one lasts another 22 years!


Richard Bray, St Andrews, Edinburgh, London, Boston, Key West
Red: Musigny Grand Cru, JF Mugnier (France) 1995
White: Domaine Ostertag A360P (France) Grand Cru Pinot Gris 2001
Budget red: Bila Haut M. Chapoutier (France) Cotes du Roussilon 2005
Budget white: Bourgogne Les Setilles, O. Leflaive (France) 2005
Sweet: Ch. Rieussec (France) 1986
Sparkling: Taittinger Comtes de Champagne (France) 1971
Fortified: Graham's (Portugal) 1977
Dud: Montrachet Laguiche (France) 1996
Thing: Been a tough year either my new espresso machine or my Canon Eos 40D
Comment: The Musigny very narrowly beat Lafite '96 (the greatest young red it's ever been my privilege to taste) as it was so complete and harmonious it stunned. The Ostertag was superb, rich and balanced. Chapoutier's cheeky Bila Haut can be found as cheap as a fiver if you look carefully and is delightful, rounded and more-ish. Setilles continues to be the benchmark for entry level white Burgundy and I think this is its 2nd or 3rd year in a row on my list. The Rieussec tasted perfect - drinking now. The Comtes - what can I say? Perfectly mature yet still displaying a classic freshness. The Graham's is just reaching that point where the fruit's still forward, ripe and luscious, but the tannins are softening. Beautiful. The Montrachet was sadly oxidised beyond all recognition.

I know Richard from his time in the wine trade in Scotland, so nice to see he is continuing to drink so well. Plenty of Burgundies taking top awards this year. It will be interesting to see what region dominates by the end of the 2007 WotY project.

selections added 4th January

Charles Taylor, London
Red: Dry River (NZ, Martinborough) Pinot Noir 1999
White: Bell Hill (NZ, Waipara) Chardonnay 2004
Budget red: Artadi (Rioja) Vinas de Gain 2001
Budget white: Vollenweider (Mosel) Wolfer Goldgruber, Spätlese, 2004
Sweet: Disznóko Tokay 6 Putts 1993
Sparkling: Pol Roger Cuvee Winston Churchill 1996
Fortified: no award
Dud: Jaboulet, Chevalier de Sterimbourg 1999
Thing: My wife's 50th birthday party.

Congratulations to your wife on her 50th - I hope you managed to find some suitable 1957 wines - not easy I think? Lots of wines here that I could easily have had in my lists: Dry River (I had a wonderful 1994 during the year) and the Artadi.


Otto Nieminen, Finland
Red: Domaine de Montille (France) Pommard 1er Cru Pézerolles 2002
White: Nikolaihof (Austria) Grüner Veltliner Vinothek 1991
Budget red: Éric Texier (France) Côtes-du-Rhône Brézème 2004
Budget white: Langwerth von Simmern (Germany) Riesling Kabinett 1993
Sweet: Max Ferd. Richter (Germany) Mülheimer Helenenkloster Riesling Eiswein** 2004
Sparkling: Pierre Peters (France) Extra Brut NV
Fortified: Osborne (Spain) VORS Sherry Palo Cortado PAP NV
Dud: DRC 2003 line-up
Thing: Musar - since I can't fit it elsewhere this year!
Comment: The budget red choice was difficult as Coop. Ag. Sta. Barbara's Barbaglio 2000 and 2001 were both lovely and almost Musary and I've drunk dozens of them. But Téxier wins for its purity.

Obviously the DRCs stand out as a major disappointment. I didn't taste the 2003s myself, but this atypically hot vintage has done no real favours to many European producers


Lionel Nierop, Cambridge
Red: Ch Trotanoy 1961
White: Dom de Comtes Lafon, Meursault 'Clos de La Barre' 1993
Budget red: Luis Felipe Edwards Gran Reserva Malbec 2002
Budget white: Tesco Finest Tingleup Riesling, Australia, 2006
Sweet: JJ Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Goldkapsule Auslese 1995
Sparkling: Bollinger RD 1995
Fortified: Noval 1963
Dud: no award
Thing: Hermitage La Chapelle
Comment: Another year where all my best wines are heavily orientated towards Riesling. However, the Clos de La Barre was an unexpected surprise that turned up at a work tasting and it trumped all other pretenders in the white category. I've been lucky this year with reds but the Trotanoy was my highlight amongst the highlight - an amazing line up of 1961's courtesy of Keith Prothero. La Chapelle is my 'thing' as I've had 5 or 6 vintages this year, all of which were great.

I attended the same tasting of Bordeaux '61s as Lionel, and agree that the Trotanoy was undoubtedly one of the stars of the evening, whilst one or two other famous names disappointed.


Guy Dennis, London
Red: Colgin Herb Lamb Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, 1994
White: Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos 1997, Dauvissat
Budget red: Domaine La Combe Blanche, La Galine 2000
Budget white: The Society's Vin d'Alsace
Sweet: Vouvray Clos du Bourg Demi Sec, 1995 (Huet)
Sparkling: Cristal 1999
Fortified: no award
Dud: no award
Thing: Shure e2c ear buds till the cables wore out
Comment: If I could name two other wines they would be Moulin-à-Vent, Clos des Rochegrès, 2002 (Jadot), which if, like me, you've never really tried aged Beaujolais, is fascinating. And also Canet Valet's Les Ivresses from St Chinian, which was absolutely beguiling and great value for money, and doesn't need ageing to shine. What marks out these wines was how interesting they were to me, as was the Dauvissat - the first aged, top-class Chablis I'd tasted, and a revelation - a really fabulous wine, so complex and different from cheaper, younger Chablis. For me, these were the real highlights, along with the La Galine, even though the likes of Cristal and Colgin are famously sensational.

Domaine La Combe Blanche is cropping up on a few lists, and very impressive the wines are too. Jadot's upper-end Beaujolais, which are made like Pinots Noirs, are amazing wines.


Phil Shorten, London Red: Felton Road (New Zealand) Block 5 Pinot Noir 2003 - from magnum
White: Dom. de la Sansonierre (France) Anjou Blanc La Lune 2002
Budget red: Bianchi (Italy) Gattinara 1999
Budget white: Coffele (Italy) Soave Classico 2004
Sweet: Hetszolo (Hungary) Tokaji Aszu 6 Puttonyos 1999
Sparkling: Bollinger (France) RD 1996
Fortified: Yalumba (Australia) 50 year old Tawny Port
Dud: no award
Thing: Cycling to work; Noma restaurant
Comment: Plenty of reds to choose from, but the Felton Road stands as the best New World example of Pinot Noir I've ever tasted. Marc Angeli's Anjou was enjoyed on several occasions - wonderfully ethereal and mineral wine that shows how stunning Chenin Blanc can be. At just over £15, the Gattinara isn't cheap, but it beats the pants of many far more expensive Barolos - delicious and expressive of where it comes from. As basic Soave, the Coffele has aged remarkably well and shows complexity not expected of such a modest wine. I love Tokaji, so the Hetszolo was a no brainer, notwithstanding its youth. Bolly RD 1996 beats Krug 1996 due to its immediate drinkability and refinement. Notwithstanding some superb Vintage Ports tasted in recent weeks, the Yalumba Tawny stands alone as the singular most brilliant wine enjoyed all year. No real duds for me, but buying a bike and cycling to work every day was a revelation. Copenhagen's Noma restaurant is one of the best dining experiences I have enjoyed in Europe - some superbly matched wines on the degustation menu as well.

Felton Road's Block 5, one of Marlborough's oldest Pinot Vineyards, is the real deal: a genuinely exciting terroir in this very young country that has yet to discover its best sites I suspect. Good tip on Noma, as I am off to Copenhagen at some point this year thanks to cheap direct flights with Ryan Air - I hear its a bit of a foodie heaven


John Holmes. USA via UK!
Red: 1986 Penfolds Grange
White: 2004 Cloudy Bay
Budget red: 2003 Gustavo Thrace Cabernet Sauvignon ($38)
Budget white: Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc ($17)
Sweet: 1982 d'Yquem
Sparkling: 1990 Louis Roederer Cristal
Fortified: 1957 Sandemans Port
Dud: Nickel and Nickel Wines in general
Thing: Sony ebook
Comment: Well it was my 50th this year. It's not very year you get a chance to open those rare bottles saved up !

Having just invested in a new Sony Vaio ultra-portable laptop, delighted with this choice as 'thing' of the year. Nickel & Nickel - part of Far Niente I believe? - certainly aren't shy on the pricing of their wines as I recall from tasting them in the states. Congratulations on the big 5-0 John, and commiserations on such a poor choice of birth year for wine!

selections added 3rd January

Jonathan Warwick-Godfrey, Middlesex
Red: Wilfrid Rousse Chinon Vieilles Vignes 2003
White: no award
Budget red: Terrilogio Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2003
Budget white: Ken Forrester Chenin Blanc 2006
Sweet: no award
Sparkling: Charles Heidsieck Mis En Cave NV
Fortified: Williams & Humbert (M&S) Pale Cream Sherry
Dud: Kurt Hain Piesporter Goldtropchen Spätlese 2002
Thing: Lemnos
Comment: No stand out white for me on the upper price bracket though plenty of good budget whites. Ken Forrester also makes a Tesco Chenin Blanc Reserve bottled in France which is under a fiver and seriously good value. The Riesling not particularly bad was a bit lifeless compared to other 2002s I've tasted. The Sherry is fantastic. Was an impulse buy just before Christmas at £3.99. Insane value , no wine this good should be so cheap. Perfect aperitif. Sweet but with perfect balance, very long finish. Seemed to go well with sweet and savoury nibbles. The Chinon is the type of wine that converts people who don't see the point in fine wine, French wine, Cabernet Franc or wine from the Loire. Intense fragrant black fruit, mineral edge, silky tannins and well balanced acidity with a long finish. The bonafide Vino Nobile is currently an Aldi special at £6.99. Having opened a bottle I'll be buying more to stash for a couple of years. Very good example with some life ahead of it. I went to Lemnos on honeymoon this year, and it proved perfect, what more can I say?

I'm particularly pleased to see the South African wine from Chenin Blanc maestro Ken Forrester here - a wine I recommended on wine-pages, and which I bought by the case as one of the great bargains of last year.


Tim Carlisle, Bicester
Red: Dm de Prieure Roch Les Suchots 1999
White: Etienne Sauzet Puligny Montrachet 1997
Budget red: Lonardi Valpolicella Ripasso
Budget white: Pampas del Sur Viognier
Sweet: Dr Loosen Urziger Wurtzgarten Auslese Gold Cap
Sparkling: La Scolca D'Antan Gavi Spumante / Winston Churchill 1996
Fortified: Andrew Quady Starboard 1996
Dud: Langoa Barton 1997
Thing: My Daughter Anna (aged 15 weeks)
Comment: Too tough to call on the sparkling, the Langoa '97 thoroughly underwhelmed me at several attempts compared with the '96, and Domaine de prieure Roche is of course run by Frederic Roch whose other claim to fame is that he owns and runs 50% of DRC with Aubert de Villaine (who gets all the plaudits)

Congratulations Tim on your "thing" of the year. I particularly like the juxtaposition of the Gavi Spumante and the 1996 deluxe cuvée Winston Churchill as sparkling wines of the year.


Kevin Heatherington, Leicestershire
Red: F. Jobard (France) Meursault Blagny 1992
White: Ch de Negly (France) L'Ancely 2000
Budget red: La Dournie (France) Elise 2003
Budget white: Wm Fevre (France) Chablis Vaillons 2002
Sweet: Alvea (Spain) PX Montilla-Moriles Solera 1927
Sparkling: Jacquesson (France) Champagne No 729
Fortified: Wilson and Valdespino (Spain) Choice Brown Sherry, Solera 1868
Dud: Mas de Lavail (France) La Desirade 2004
Thing: Richard Chaffers coffee can c1760

In a year in which I tasted some 19th century Madeiras, 1930's Sherry and Champagne from 1914, I can sympathise with the awards to the old wines in this list: apart from (hopefully) being great wines in their own right, there is a magical extra element when tasting an historic wine.


Garry Clark, Chester
Red: Chateau d'Armailhac 2006 barrel sample at Mouton Rothschild
White: Domaine A, Lady A Fume, Tasmania, Australia
Budget red: Intriga Cabernet Sauvignon, Maipo, Chile 2005
Budget white: Ca del Solo Muscat (California) USA 2006
Sweet: Didier Dagueneau, Les Jardins de Babylon Jurancon
Sparkling: de Venoge Blanc de Blancs 1978 en magnum Champagne
Fortified: Croft (Port) 1970 - our last magnum; each one just got better
Dud: Petrus 1981 - flat, lifeless, lacking in fruit, no structure
Thing: Visiting Mouton for the Vendange - picking merlot then tasting barrel samples the next day.
Comment: Its amazing to think its been a whole year since the last one!! So many great wines this year, but also so many duds, especially white burgs from the late 80's to 90's. Heartbreaking really. Highlight of the year for me was a picking visit to Mouton Rothschild in October, my second visit to Bordeaux this year. Tasting the barrel samples of 2006 d'Armailhac, Clerc-Milon and Mouton was an amazing experience, the Mouton was outstanding, but the d'Armailhac just blew me away too.

Some great drinking here from Garry (who is sommelier at the Chester Grosvenor hotel). Domaine A's Fumé is a good choice: as long as it is sensitively handled and not tricked-up with a bag of chips, I am a great fan of barrel-fermented and/or aged Sauvignon Blanc.


Ray Abercromby, Glossop, Derbyshire
Red: Chateau Latour (France) Pauillac 1961
White: Ramonet (France) Chassagne Montrachet Les Boudriottes 1996
Budget red: Marques de la Concordia (Spain) Rioja Reserva 2001
Budget white: Dom La Combe Blanche (France) VdP des Cotes du Brian 2000
Sweet: Oremus (Hungary) Eszencia, Tokaji 2005
Sparkling: Philipponat (France) Champagne Clos des Goisses 1990
Fortified: Grahams (Portugal) Vintage Port 1977
Dud: no award
Thing: Naim hifi; Alfa Romeo Brera coupé
Comment: A year of superlatives. You know it's a good year when you see Linden Wilkie at many tastings. The Latour stood out from 18 other 1961s (although the LLC and Cos ran it close); the Ramonet a pearl in a sea of oxidised burgundies. The Oremus is the finest sweet wine I have ever had, while the Clos des Goisses beat a Krug 1988 and Deutz 1982. The hifi takes music to a different level, and the beauty of the Misano Blue Alfa (for me) transcends boring German silver/black monotony.

Nice choices here, from the Latour 1961, one of my runners-up this year and tasted at the same event as Ray, to the Alfa Romeo


Edward Bolland, Staffordshire
Red: DRC, La Tache (France) 1967
White: Arnaud Ente, Mersault La Goutte d'Or (France) 2002
Budget red: La Tour St Bonnet, Medoc, (France) 2000
Budget white: Fillaboa, Rias Baixas (Spain) 2006
Sweet: Yquem, Sauternes (France) 1967
Sparkling: Veuve Clicquot, La Grande Dame (France)1996
Fortified: Nacional (Portugal)1967
Dud: Aldo Conterno, Barberesco Riserva Speciale (Italy)1967
Thing: My new combine harvester! (Germany)
Comment: As you can see, a bit of a vintage theme with some of my wines of the year. Nacional 67 and Yquem 67 were truly superb, while La Tache 67 stood up well on my big birthday. The Ente Goutte d'Or has become something of a favourite of mine. The La Tour St Bonnet has proved a reliable good value claret over the year and has earned its place through consistency. My new combine harvester has a nice fridge with not much vibration, perfect for storing a bottle of nice Riesling for when one gets thirsty during harvest.

I'm delighted that Edward managed to source two such amazing wines as the La Tache and d'Yquem from his very tricky birth year of 1967 - not a universally great one for wine. Not to be consumed whilst taking the new combine harvester for a spin, I presume

selections added 1st January

Duncan McLean, Orkney
Red: Cape Mentelle (Australia) Walcliffe Shiraz 2004
White: Leeuwin (Australia) Art Series Chardonnay 2001
Budget red: McHenry Hohnen (Australia) Tiger Country Red 2006
Budget white: D'Arenberg (Australia) Lucky Lizard Chardonnay 2006
Sweet: Mount Horrocks (Australia) Cordon Cut Riesling 2007
Sparkling: Stonier (Australia) Cuvee 2003
Fortified: Grant Burge (Australia) 20 Year Old Tawny Port NV
Comment: As you can maybe guess, I recently returned from a wine-tasting tour of Australia!

Lovely to have wines chosen from Duncan's adventures in Australia, which must be a source of great memories when spending the winter on Orkney! The Mount Horrocks Cordon Cut Riesling is a personal favourite of mine, and one of the genuinely great sweet wines of the world.


Matthew Hemming, Bristol
Red: Rouget (France) Vosne Romanee Cros Parantoux 1993
White: Carillon (France) Pulingy Montrachet Champs Canet 2005
Budget red: Domaine de Mourchon (France) CdR Villages Seguret 2006
Budget white: Donnhoff (Germany) Riesling QbA 2005
Sweet: Ch d'Yquem (France) Sauternes 1983
Sparkling: Veuve Clicquot (France) Rare Vintage Champagne 1988
Fortified: Massandra (Crimea) Black Muscat 1937
Dud: Oxidised Cheval Blanc 1947 (I guess that's the risk you take)
Thing: Old Cheval in great shape - 1975, 71, 66, 34
Comment: Can't believe what a conservative list that is - where are all the Aussie wines? The Cros was served blind at a tasting and blew me away; the Carillon was simply the white I remember as the most exciting to taste and drink. 83 d'Yquem was closely run by other vintages, including the 75, but was just so delicious - a perfect drink. It's been a year rich in Cheval dinners and tastings, so whilst I was utterly gutted at the 47 we opened, it's been amazing to drink so many other great vintages of this stunning claret.

I visited the German estate of Donhoff during 2007 and it was a brilliant experience, with a succession of superb Rieslings on show. As for that '47 Cheval Blanc: a reminder that there are no great old wines, just great old bottles


Ronald Massard, Singapore
Red: Grange Hermitage (Australia) 1982
White: Domaine Raveneau (Chablis, France) grand cru Le Clos 2002
Budget red: Torbreck (Barossa Valley, Australia) Woodcutter's shiraz 2005
Budget white: Domaine Alain Graillot (Crozes-Hermitage, France) 2005
Sweet: Domaine Cauhape (Jurancon, France) 1988
Sparkling: Krug (Champagne, France) 1979
Fortified: Domaine des Schistes (Maury, France) La Cerisaie 2002
Dud: most wannabe super-tuscan: super-oaky plum jam under fancy labels
Thing: "Jade on 36" restaurant in Shanghai
Comment: Grange is a legend because it sometimes fails (1993, 2000 ). This 1982 was delicious, elegant, complex and loooong. In a good year for budget wines, I sometimes replaced Singha beer for a good Khao Yai shiraz from Thailand, cooled at 11-12 deg then kept in a cooler, before I hit the food stalls dotting the footpaths of Bangkok. The whites, budget or not, were exciting as well, with mentions to Chateauneuf du Pape Chateau Fortia and Chinon Chateau de Ligre. On the sparkling side, Krug killed all competition with a fantastic nose and a muscular body. Finally, my stubborn quest for a very good pinot noir in ANZ came to success with Rippon on Lake Wanaka.

One of the highlights of my year was a visit to Krug and tasting of their vintage wines back to 1971 - though my sparkling wine of the year - the 1914 Pol Roger Chardonnay tasted on the same trip - pipped them all for the sheer experience.


Lawrence Low, Singapore
Red: Paul Jaboulet (France) Hermitage La Chapelle 1990
White: Louis Lequin (France) Batard Montrachet 1997
Budget red: Kanonkop (South Africa) Cabernet Sauvignon 2003
Budget white: Vergelegen (South Africa) Sauvignon Blanc 2004
Sweet: Chateau Doisy Daene (France) 1924
Sparkling: Pol Roger (France) Cuvee Sir Winston Churchill 1996
Fortified: Taylor's (Portugal) Vintage Port 1970
Dud: Cos d'Estournel (France) 1966
Thing: Antonio Ferrari (Italy) Solaria Jonica 1959
Comment: http://porcodivino.wordpress.com/

A couple of wines in here that have also provided some of my greatest wine experiences in the past, including the 1990 Hermitage La Chapelle and always brilliant Vergelegen Sauvignon Blanc


Antony Moss, London
Red: Chateau Rayas (France) 2003
White: Hirzberger (Austria) Gruner Veltliner Smaragd 'Rotes Tor' 2004
Budget red: Tabali (Chile) Pinot Noir 2006
Budget white: Tabali (Chile) Sauvignon Blanc 2007
Sweet: Ch. Yquem (France) 1967
Sparkling: Dom Perignon (France) Oenotheque 1973
Fortified: Hidalgo Manzanilla 'La Gitana' NV
Dud: 2004 Burgundies
Thing: Passing MW tasting and theory exams & adopting two rescue kittens
Comment: The Tabali wines were my most exciting finds this year, overturning my prejudices about Chilean wines lacking 'soul'. I've struggled with the distinctive sour, peppery, bitter character of 2004 Burgundies (red and white), but was lucky that six of them were thrown into this year's MW tasting exams, in otherwise very probing questions about Burgundy vintages and communes -so I can't really complain!

Tabali's Chardonnay was a wine of the month on wine-pages during the year and shows that South America needs time to discover its best fine wine terroirs - Tabali is in the cool Limari Valley, way, way to the far north of the traditional Chilean wine-growing heartland.


Craig Thomson, New Zealand
Red: Puriri Hills (New Zealand) Pope Merlot Carmenere Cabernet Franc 2005
White: Kumeu River (New Zealand) Mates Vineyard Chardonnay 2006
Budget red: Saltrams (Australia) Mamre Brook Shiraz 2004
Budget white: Pegasus Bay (New Zealand) Riesling 2006
Sweet: John Forrest Collection (New Zealand) Noble Riesling 2005
Dud: All Blacks (New Zealand) World Cup Team 2007
Comment: So many good kiwi wines this year, I've hardly had the desire to look further afield. There is also more promised over the next 18 months from a run of very good to excellent vintages 2005-2007.

Nice to see one of John Forrest's stickies getting the award - a really nice guy and a classy winemaker.

selections added 27th December

Liam Tait, Northumberland
Red: Chateau de la Negly (France), La Porte du Ciel, La Clape 2000
White: Antinori (Italy), Cervaro, Umbria, 2005
Budget red: Ch. Filliatreau (France) Vieilles Vignes, Saumur-Champigny 2005
Budget white: Ch. Smith Haut Lafitte (France) Blanc, Pessac-Leognan 2004
Sweet: Alois Kracher (Austria) Grande Cuvée TBA No. 10, Burgenland, 1998
Sparkling: Krug (France), Vintage Champagne, 1996
Fortified: Lustau (Spain), Almacenista Amontillado del Puerto
Dud: Chateau Palmer (France) Margaux 1996

Nice to see a vote for one of the fine sweet wines of Alois Kracher, a very gifted winemaker who died just a couple of weeks ago


Ben Fawcett, Brechin
Red: Chateau Caraguilhes (France) Cuvee Solus Corbieres 2003
White: Isole e Olena (Italty) Chardonnay 2005
Budget red: Umani Ronchi (Italy) Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 'Jorio' 2004
Budget white: Tesco Finest Gruner Veltliner (Austria) 2006
Sweet: Livio Felluga (Italy) Picolit 2003
Sparkling: Champagne Pol Roger (France) Brut 1998
Fortified: Quinta do Portal (Portugal) Colheita 1994
Dud: Chateau Canon (France) St Emilion 1998
Thing: Port
Comment: Isole's Chardonnay is a truly outstanding wine that is finding a plateau of consistency that surpasses many a white Burgundy. Cuvee solus is the top bottling of Caraguilhes, a most memorable and rewarding red. The Gruner Veltliner from Tesco is a surprising choice. Whilst the vast majority of supermarket selections remain uniformly dull this is a wine of true character and one i continue to seek out. Dessert wine from Italy always gets my pulse racing and Felluga's Picolit is supreme. Pol' 1998 shows a house on real form and Canon '98 was a true disappointment lacking depth and complexity. Port remains unbelievable value and Colheita's in particular. Niepoort are my other current favourite but Portal won purely because it punched so highly above expectation.

Isole e Olena's Chardonnay is a terrific wine, as is their Syrah - both unexpected stars of Tuscany


Justin Bryant, Suffolk
Red: Geyserville (USA) Ridge 2000
White: Reinhold Haart (Germany) Obligsberg Spatlese 1996
Budget red: Telmo Rodriguez (Spain) LZ 2005
Budget white: Laurenz V (Austria) Singing Gruner Veltliner 2005
Sweet: Dr. Loosen (Germany) Urziger Wurzgarten Auslese 1996
Sparkling: Egly-Ouriet (France) Blanc de Noirs NV
Fortified: No thanks
Dud: Clos de los Siete (Argentina) 2005
Thing: Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Sopranos

Very classy line-up, and I too am a huge fan of the Champagne house of Egly-Ouriet, who's 1995 vintage wine was one of my stars of last year. But the vote for the Sopranos is the one I'd echo most loudly - a stunning TV series in so many ways. I've just recently returned from a big tasting tour of Argentina, and visited Justin's "dud", Clos de los Siete. I'll be publishing my thoughts on all of their wines soon


Linden Wilkie, London
Red: Chateau Gruaud Larose (France) St.-Julien 1928
White: Bienvenue-Bâtard-Montrachet (France) 1988, Domaine Ramonet
Budget red: Bourgogne (France) 1993, Henri Jayer
Budget white: Carrick Riesling (New Zealand), Bannockburn 2005
Sweet: 1860s-English-bottled Tokay (Hungary)
Sparkling: Dom Perignon Oenotheque (France) 1985
Fortified: Quinta do Noval Nacional (Portugal) 1963
Dud: Castelgiocondo Brunello di Montalcino (Italy) 1997
Thing: iPod Shuffle - small enough not to be bothersome
Comment: My cheap red - over £100 worth in today's market is a bit cheeky I know, but it can't have cost much when it was released in 1995/6, and shows what that master could do with the lowliest selection in his domaine. The Carrick Riesling, was tasted while visiting New Zealand in February. Served blind in a Riesling tasting it was my top wines. Noel Young has this in the UK for £12.49. The Nacional 1963 is the greatest port I've ever tasted and eclipsed (for me anyway) both the 1931 and 1931 Nacional at a vertical I organized. I suppose the greatest curiosity was a cellar of old Tokay packed up and sold by Christie's. They invited me to try what turned out to be a somewhat average wine experience when they opened a bottle in their office. But a subsequent bottle selected from lots I bought at the auction turned out to be alive, vibrant and delicious. Technically not the best sweet wine of 2007, but it's not always about that is it? The Brunello is a wine a friend bought a few bottles of (as did I). One or two have been delicious, while others have been flat and dried out. The most recent bottle barely drinkable. Oh dear.

Mouthwatering selection from Linden as always, but delighted to see the excellent Carrick Riesling in there as it is one of my personal favourites from this fine Central Otago producer.


Tim Jackson, London
Red: La Chapelle de la Mission (France) Pessac-Leognan 2001
White: Schloss Gobelsburg (Austria) Kamptal Kammerner Renner 2005
Budget red: Pio Cesare (Italy) Barbera d'Alba 2004
Budget white: Caldora (Italy) Colle dei Venti Pecorino 2005
Sweet: Robert Weil (Germany) Rheingau Kiedrich Grafenberg Trockenbeerenauslese 2006
Sparkling: Bollinger (France) RD 1995
Fortified: Lustau (Spain) Palo Cortado NV
Dud: Quintarelli (Italy) Valpolicella Superiore 1999
Thing: Nintendo Wii, with Wii Sports and Legend of Zelda
Comment: This year, I'm pleased to say that I kept my new year's resolution to drink more white, so had many good candidates for both awards including my first good oaked Sauvignon and other interesting things. But the Pecorino was a particularly entertaining find. Great alternative to Chardonnay. The Schloss Gobelsburg was my first GV, and it (and the '06) were excellent. No contest there. The red category (as usual) had more competition (LLC '97, Lignier-Michelot VV Chambolle Musigny '04, RWT '99, Bolla's La Poiane Valpolicella Superiore Ripasso '04.), but the La Chapelle - youthful tho' it is - just keeps drawing me back (having trouble resisting the last 2 bottles). I'm surprised at how much Italian wine I've drunk this year. That wasn't a New Year resolution! But anyway, a word has to be said on the Wii (which managed to edge out my electric guitar) - Nintendo have revolutionised gaming: no-one else could have created a console that could attract those who have *never* liked computer games (i.e. anyone who isn't male and teenage). Awesome. And, in fact, the Nintendo DS is doing the same thing in handheld consoles - my two-and-a-half year-old nephew can functionally play Zelda on the DS, it's that simple to use!

Huge shame about the Quintarelli. The couple of times I've tasted this wine (from different vintages) have been very impressive.


Rodrigo Mainardi, Brazil
Red: Quinta do Monte d'Oiro (Portugal) Reserva 2000
White: Domaine Ponsot (France) Morey Saint Denis Clos de Monts Luisants 98
Budget red: Tenuta delle Terre Nere (Italy) Etna Rosso 2005
Budget white: Viñas del Vero (Spain) Blanco 2005
Sweet: Alois Kracher (Austria) TBA #10 1998
Sparkling: Jacques Selosse (France) Substance
Fortified: Niepoort (Portugal) Colheita 1863
Dud: Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin (France) Champagne Yellow label
Thing: Oxford Companion to Wine 3rd edition - Jancis Robinson

Another vote not only for Alois Kracher, but for exactly the same wine picked by Liam Tait in Northumberland!


Roberto Rockmann, Brazil
Red: Barolo Briccho Roche Brunate 1996 Ceretto (Piedmont Italy)
White: Puligny Montrachet 1 er cru Champs Canet 2002 JM Boillot (Fr)
Budget red: Pommard Les Pézerolles 2003 AF Gros (France)
Budget white: Bourgogne Clos du Chateau 2004 Ch. Puligny Montrachet (Fr)
Sweet: N° 6 Grand Cuvée N. V. TBA 2004 Alois Kracher (Austria)
Sparkling: Bollinger RD 1996 (Champagne France)
Fortified: Quinta do Noval Vintage 2000 (Porto - Portugal)
Thing: Scarlet Johansson

The Bollinger 1996 could easily have made my list - a great Champagne



N.B. submissions for Wines of the Year have now closed.