Twitter is a magical beast. It is amazing how many connections, events, useless facts, bits of wonderful content(and not so wonderful) that you pick up. What is super creepy is when you meet that twitter friend face to face, yep it happens a lot and often results in the “Hey i’m X, i follow you on twitter” . I’m getting off topic sort of. Imbiber Melbourne, yes. Now. In Sydney and Melbourne there are twitter based wine tasting groups (Spitbucket and Swirl Sniff Spit), an online community of wine buffs of all calibers who meet up once a month to try some wines and tweet about it… lots, but they are from Sydney and Brisbane, so they don’t count. Imbiber Melbourne is the brain child of @carowinemary and @bendid , similar to their northern cousins it’s a monthly wine tasting event promoted only via social media and encourages heavily the discussion of featured wines.
In December I finally got along to the December Imbiber tasting with wingman @simon_burke . Let me set the scene. Held at Circa the venue is stunning, the staff are great, a giant silver @laurentperrier_ Champagne bucket (is bucket really the most eloquent word for it) filled to the brim with a dozen or so bubbles from Aus and abroad. We also have Ben and Caroline as MC’s for the night running us through each bracket. The night is broken up by some matched cuisine by @humblesommelier which is epic, and for $30 its dosh well spent. Lets talk bubbles.
Domaine Chandon Vintage Brut 2009
50% pinot noir, 47% chardonnay and 3% pinot meunier.
This is the headline Chandon sparkling that comes out of the Yarra Valley. It’s crisp, hits of apricot, brioche and almond. It’s always good.
Hoddles Creek Blanc de Blancs 2010
100% Chardonnay and the first sparkling Hoddles Creek. For a first go its very good, actually disregard the fact it’s their first. It’s very good. All up in my grill is melon, straw apples and a very clear and refined wine. This on a warm day on a deck chair with some variety of brightly coloured pants please.
Clover Hill Tasmania Cuvee NV, Tasmania
A blend of 56% chardonnay, 37% pinot noir & 7% pinot meunier. Very fine and clear wine, with stone fruit, lemon and apples.
Clover Hill Vintage 2008, Tasmania
The same light, stoney, lemon flavours as the NV albeit with a bit more flavour from the lees.
Arras Vintage 2004, Tasmania
More Tasmanian bubbles. Again quite clear with some good acid, minerality and complex pastry. This is was quite good.
Taittinger Brut NV, Champagne
60% pinot noir and 40% chardonnay. MY PREVIOUS! This is one of my favourite Champagnes. Super tight bead, rich mouth feel and a wonderful balance of acid . To my surprise some people didn’t like it, Simon and immediately turned our noses up at them and plowed through more wines. I’ll take a bottle and a long straw thanks.
Laurent-Perrier Brut NV, Champagne
Now, this wine didn’t go down overly well with everyone. Although it does have a wonderful zesty flavour and light mouth feel, being shown after the richness of the Taittinger made it fade away a bit. In isolation it’s a good wine.
Pol Roger Brut NV, Champagne
An equal amount of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier this wine has some good minerality but when I first tasted it SMACK BACK DORITOS. Yes, I immediately thought I was chowing down on Cheese Doritos. @mattskinner seems to think I was stoned or potentially having a strock at this stage. I don’t know. But Doritos. Apart from corn chips, I found it a pretty one dimensional Champagne. Down the hatch!
Pol Roger Vintage 2002, Champagne
Lots of yeast, a little oak. Yeah look, ok.
Vazart-Coquart Brut Reserve Blanc de Blancs NV, Champagne
Hello Sunshine! 100% Chard(derr BDB), apple and bread with lots of acid and cleanliness.
Pierre Peters Cuvee de Reserve Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Clos du Mesnil NV, Champagne
The first thing you feel in your mouth with this wine was a tongue cramp from having to say its name. Some great stone fruit, lots of acid and wonderful mouthfeel. Alas where do I find this in Aus?
Champagne Fleury Saignée NV, Champagne
Another rosé? Hells yes. This was really knocked me around a bit, lots of rose(ahem) and well balanced. This one was a bit of a surprise of the night.