Saturday, October 4, 2008

Max's Burgundy Tasting at Søllerød Kro

About 4 years ago Max joined our little wine club. Since then he has been rambling about a Burgundy Tasting. So finally the day arrived.

The tasting was held @ Søllerød Kro, which was the perfect spot. Søllerød Kro has incredible atmosphere, top notch service and on the tip of the iceberg you have restaurant chef, Jan Restorff nursing his guest with exceptional personality and it gives you a feeling like coming home.
Søllerød Kro is very old school, but their food has during the years become a notch lighter and refined and this night was for me their best performance ever.
I have (again) forgotten my notes at the restaurant, so here is what I remember:

Starter / Welcome:

NV Selosse Contraste

Deep and bold nose with walnuts and almonds – rather intriguing. However, the taste had a short citrus dropping, which took some balance away. I was surprised to see it was Contraste, but it confirms that Selosse has enormous bottle differential. I prefer Contraste as a good companion to cheese, not as a starter.

Flight 1 (Both Champagnes where decanted)

Served with the Søllerød Kro "signature dish" - a caviar can with soft avocado in the button button, on top of that king crab and finally french caviar.

1988 Dom. Ruinart Blanc de Blanc

Uhhh…the nose was exquisite at first sniff, but sadly it couldn’t hold the intensity. However it evolved in the glass and added a lot of flowery perfumes. I remember this Champagne as being extremely elegant and perfectly mature.

1988 Krug

I love this Champagne and it was interesting too see how it’s profile was slightly altered by the decanting. Still impressively concentrated, but with decanting it was a lot more refined and elegant. The glass evolvement and layers of this Champagne was breathtaking – I have way too little of this in my cellar.

The shift from the complex Champagne flight to white Burgundy was a challenge for me. The four wines we had where all good, but no way near the Champagnes. Even if it’s simplified generalizing, I sometimes feel the wines are too silky and “dead” on the tongue compared to Champagne and even Riesling.

Flight 2

Served with scallop, oyster and horse radish (Noma inspired looking plate ;-) )

2001 Jean-Marc Boillot Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru

Oozing nose of sulfur which took some initial balance away. I am usually not that sensitive too sulfur, but unfortunately it penetrated the wines personality from nose to taste. Again, I found the wine lacked in grip on the tongue.

1994 Maison Leroy Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru

Sensual nose and a lot more oily, than its rival. A very charming wine, but again it lacked somewhat in definition.

Flight 3 - White Burgundy

Served with a great dish of lobster, apple and curry. Very very nice.

2003 Kistler Chardonnay Vine Hill Road
2005 Jean-Marc Boillot Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru

On arrival both wines was a notch higher than flight 2. Very alive in the glass, with good flowery spectrum and lime fruits. However, both wines lost a lot of intimidating complexity and fresh appeal, with warmth in the glass. However the warmth accomplished the curry sauce perfectly – so there you go.

As I don’t have my notes here – I can only say what I preferred Jean-Marc Boillot better, even if its way too overpriced.

Flight 4 - Red Burgundy (Without food)

2005 Lucien Le Moine Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru
2005 Domaine Meo-Camuzet Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru

Extremely young wines with only the skin of the raspberries and both infected with a cool, almost iron-like tone. Both wines benefited from air, but Lucien Le Moine was my favorite as it gained more inner warmth and personality in the glass. I have no doubt that these wines will be great someday and the tonight’s ranking might shift.

Flight 5 – Red Burgundy
(Served with monkfish, mushroom and almond – this dish was off the charts – BRAVO)

2002 Clos de Tart Grand Cru
2002 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Grands Echezeaux Grand Cru

Ahhh man – this flight was out of this world. 2002 had a distinguished sweetness and “spice” like no other (and I guessed 2002). Both extremely sensual wines, with a lush approach to it’s taster with world class purity and definition. DRC a notch better, simply because it’s level of purity was higher.

Flight 6 - Red Burgundy
(Served with a slice of roasted foie gras topped with pieces of pink pigeon and variations of truffle. What a dish – and what a flight)

2001 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti La Tâche Grand Cru
2001 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Romanee St. Vivant Grand Cru

Both wines where incredible, but La Táche was off the radar charts. The nose had all the essence of Burgundy with a never ending complex layers. I can help to recall an amazing and refined tone of roses. I was very impressed with the way it curled around the tongue and its ability to handle the intense food – with no struggle it cleared the palate for the next mouthful. Let’s not forget the Romanee St. Vivant – which was a lovely wine too, with more rustic patterns – but also an incredible wine.

Flight 7

2000 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Richebourg Grand CruVery
2000 Domaine Leroy Clos de Vougeot Grand

Almost hangovers from the previous flight. I recall both wines as being a bit bolder, with darker fruits, but still with exceptional balance. They will fore sure improve with age.
Heat 8 - Red Burgundy
(Served with a variety of European cheeses.)

1989 Domaine Leroy Romanee St. Vivant Grand Cru
1990 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Romanee St. Vivant Grand Cru

You could now tell that, there was some age on the wines. Unfortunately the DRC was not a representative bottle. Peppery and old Barolo flavors with neither sweetness nor purity – what a shame. The Leroy was better – even if it lacked a little bit to hold it fruit intensity. The wine should be drunk now and has good notes of forest, rubber and raspberries.

Flight 9 (without food)

1964 Domaine Leroy Grands Echezeaux Grand Cru

Corked – what a shame

Heat 10 – Dessert
2007 Albert Mann Altenbourg Muscat SGN "Le Tri"

Niels had donated this sticky wine. 350g of residual sucker – Jesus Christ – and it was amazing. Still balanced and a floral pearl with exotic fruits.

What a tasting – thank you, Max.



Henrik Ehlers said...

Hej Thomas,

Fandt lige din blog. Fantastisk læsning og ekseptionelle billeder. Hvis du engang vil slå dig ned som pressefotograf, så er der vist ikke noget til hindring for det.

PS. Hvilket kamera bruger du?



Thomas said...

Tak for de rosende ord.

Jeg er en total amatør – når det gælder billeder, men jeg syntes det er rasende sjovt og interessant.

Jeg bruger et Canon EOS 450D og har fået utrolig mange gode fif af Trine , som jeg syntes tager nogle sindssyg flotte billeder.

Linsen, som jeg har brugt til disse billeder er simpelthen fantastisk. Det er en lille nyanskaffet makro fætter – Canon 50mm prime f/14 USM linse. Den er uden zoom, men man opnår meget dybde og præcision i billederne. For alt i verden er blitz at undgå når man skal prøve at fange den hyggelige stemning på en restaurant eller for den sags skyld tage billeder af mad på en kridhvid tallerken. Ydermere, er det en anelse mere diskret at tage billeder på en restaurant uden blitz.
Linsen er temmelig utaknemmelig under svag belysning, hvis man ikke lige rammer rigtigt i det man skal fokusere på. Det kræver nogle gange flere forsøg og ISO’en skal godt op i gear (800 til 1600).

Bagefter justerer jeg billederne i Photoshop – men da jeg er familiefar og har sparsom tid, bruger jeg ikke mere end 2-3 minutter på hvert billede. Det første jeg gør, er, at lave en Auto Levels på billederne. Det kan give mange forskellige resultater. Belysningen kan falde helt gak ud og jeg ender ofte med at droppe denne og gå til manuel Levels justering. Men i nogle tilfælde vælger den automatisk ”Levels”, at give billede lidt mere lys. Ofte vil dette medføre for megen blå nuance og jeg justerer derefter lidt op for de røde og gule nuancer. Sidste men ikke mindst – verdens mest geniale software – ”Noise Ninja”. Her kan støj under meget lav belysning fjernes (korn og urenheder i billedet). Jeg er slet ikke trænet i dette sofware, men kan se, at man skal passe lidt på at være for grov i støjfjernelse når der er ansigter på billederne. Det får personerne til at se helt baby-agtige ud i huden og det ser forkert ud.

Så – der er lidt ”snyd” men overall kan et skidt billede ikke reddes – bare pyntes lidt ;-).

Fortsat god læsning på mig blog…håber de finansielle markeder falder lidt til ro, så jeg kan smage lidt vin igen.

Bedste hilsner,


Henrik Ehlers said...

Tak Toga!. :)

Jeg må se at få sparret sammen til det kamera. Photoshop har jeg styr på, men vil da lige prøve at DL den Ninja-plugin.

Ha' det godt.


Henrik Ehlers

Thomas said...

Ahhh...du er den, Henrik ;-).

Jamen det er ingen vej udenom - husk; "GÅ ALDRIG NED PÅ UDSTYRET"



Henrik Ehlers said...

hehe, nå ja! :)

Sagde jeg også til konen for nyligt. "Jeg går aldrig ned på udstyret".