Mois: avril 2012

The highway in Mosel (Germany), update.

Since the last time I wrote on the subject a few things happened.

First, the election were a huge disappointment as the Green party gave in to political maneuver. In other word the bridge has started to be build. The first visible scars in the vineyard were obvious already last November. Things went on with for example an action launched on the basis of the lack, or more precisely the absence of a decent geological study. Everything was dismissed by the regional government.

But Nature is stubborn.

Today I learned that the construction company has stopped any operations on the site. Cranes have been dismantled and worker sent away. It is hard to get informations but it seems that the problem comes from the uncertainty about the soil ability to withstand such a massive construction. This is not a cancellation but it will be a new delay and consequently an increase in the cost of the project, especially if the studies have to be carried on.

The case is not closed. To be continued.

ALKO: Some wines are just not worth it.

After a long silence due to a wonderful wine trip in Mosel, I come back with a brand new article. Today we will speak of some wines that are not worth trying on Alko’s selection. It is a short list of the most recent disappointments.


Nieto Don Nicanor Bonarda 2010 : (12€) One big deception on this bottle. For a Bonarda (a basic grape to produce wine) this is expensive and the wine doesn’t deliver. It is overwhelmingly oaky, far too ripe and not technically clean. Avoid.


Hardys Stamp of Australia : (8,5€) This could be said of most of the wine in this price range which I rarely taste. Jammy, dissociated… pointless.


Emiliana Adobe Syrah Grenache Mourvèdre 2011 : (10€) Emiliana does usually a pretty good work on wines. This wine has almost nothing to say. Not interesting.

Indomita Carignan Gran Reserva 2010 : (10€) Well, first it is not a Carignan, it is a blend of Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon (up to 15%, the extreme limit when you can still call it by its the main grape name). It is far too high in alcohol and dominated by oak. Very unpleasant to drink. Not recommended.

Tabali Salala Vineyard Pinot Noir 2009 : (20€) Not an ugly wine but it does not deliver. Far less interesting than a Las Brisas which cost 14€. This is the perfect example that warmer is not better. The wine does not display any signs of being a Pinot Noir, it is completely cooked by the sun. Alcohol is dominant. Not interesting.

Cartagena Tres Viñedos Pinot Noir 2010 : (25€) This is not really a « do not buy » but rather a « not worth the price ». This is a decent Pinot Noir, very technical (lots of manipulation in the cellar are visible). It is ok but from a Pinot at 25€, this is absurd. It taste a bit like the basic Cono Sur Pinot Noir (9€) with a bit more structure. This wine is artifical, showing an unreal fruitiness and no elegance at all. It is tiring to drink. No point to buy, for that kind of top end Pinot Noir aim rather at the to-be-ordered Cono Sur Pinot Noir 20 Barrels which is a real powerful wine.


JP Chenet : In general JP Chenet wines are to be avoided. The main reason is that they are extremely variable. From one bottle to another, you never have the same wine. I tasted three bottles last year : one was correct, one was tasteless and one was ugly. This is not acceptable from a wine that is design to always taste the same. Even at 7€, this is overpriced and it does not have any character. Go for South-Africa, Argentina, Italy or Portugal in that price range.

Mouton Cadet 2010 : (12€) In such a perfect vintage as 2010 in Bordeaux, how is it possible to source such an awful wine? A brand that I do not recommend.


Gancia Prosecco : (11€) No taste, no structure and unpleasant to drink. Hopefully soon out of the selection.


Freixenet : apart from the Vintage, none of the wine in Alko (Cordon Nero and Carta Nevada) are worth buying. Aim rather at Anna de Cordoniu.

Señorios des los Llanos : Pointless oak juice. Both wines available (Crianza and Gran Reserva) are utterly disgusting. There is nothing but oak. Sure, it is cheap…