Last week was a hell of a week with three dinners amongst the many releases and offers we were putting out at the minute. There was no doubt about the highlight though….the Sisseck tasting and dinner at 1 Lombard Street. The format of the evening was a relaxed walk around tasting of the recently bottled 2007’s and the 2008 cask samples. The wines were stunning although well structured as you would expect. For me the highlight was the simply awesome length of the 2008 Pingus. The Psi 2008 and Flor de Pingus 2008 were still very youthful and not yet giving away much but the mouth feel (I hate that expression but it is useful here) and texture show that it is all in there. The 2007 finished wines got better and better in glass and had a real richness and power but with a freshness under it all, quite an achievement at 14% and more. The Psi 2007 is growing in stature with every tasting and as Peter said almost apologetically “I’ve made quite a serious wine here”…not necessarily the aim but more of that later.
From the tasting it was a glass of Delamotte NV from magnum en route to the dining room, everyone seemed to agree the Delamotte was on fine form, the perfect “refresher” before moving on to the dinner wines. Adam then introduced Peter having given a brief history of the relationship between Corney’s and Peter which goes back to the very beginning of the Pingus Estate and beyond as Peter’s uncle, Peter Vinding-Diers, is an old supplier and friend of the company. Peter then spoke about the 2008 and 2007 vintages and the “PSi project”. Psi – taken from Peter’s initials – is a project aimed at helping small vineyard owners who have no real interest in making a wine but have some great old-vine fruit. Peter helps them to produce the best they can (organically or a near as) and pays them a fair price, we then get a cracking wine that drinker earlier than Flor de Pingus…it’s a winner all round!!
At dinner we had Flor 2003 and 2001 with Game Pithivier with Cabbage, Foie Gras and Truffles. I loved the combination, there seemed to be something of an agreement that before eating the Flor 2003 was possibly the pick of the two but I think it became clear when combined with the food that the 2001 although still young was more complete and had such harmony. Both mighty impressive and starting to drink but if I had a case of each (sadly I don’t!!) I would wait 2 years and have another look then. The Flor 1996 is stunning now and there is no doubting that the raw ingredients of Flor are better now than then. It is worth mentioning that all the dinner wines were carefully double decanted at about 4pm the same day using the tried and trusted out of the bottle and back in again technique! See the Pictures.
Then we had Pingus 2004 & 2001 with Peppered Loin of Venison wrapped in Speck. This was stunning, the food being the perfect foil. The 2004 - being Peters first 100pointer (his wines are always in the 92-100range and love or hate scores they are a validation of achievement) - was stunning but very tight…it had been quite incredibly fruited when we had first decanted it - and was still going well 2 days later – this is a wine to marvel at but then leave alone for 8-10years and more (much more). The 2001 Pingus was as with the 2001 Flor more integrated and nearer to drinking but still very youthful. If you can find 2001’s snap them up. Cheeses followed and the tasting wines came out again. All in all a very memorable evening and certainly not a standard Tuesday!!
Note to self.....make sure your camera flash is working!!