Thought I’d missed the boat this year for the ‘Majestic Winter Tasting’ until I received an email a few days before with an invitation to attend. I’ve always enjoyed Majestic evenings in the past and this one was no different if a little busier than usual.
I went along with my daughter Laura (her first time at one of these events) and John a friend of mine who has regularly come along to previous tastings.
The event was supposed to start at 6.30pm and when we arrived at around 6.15pm the shop was already heaving with people. We were greeted with a glass of Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne, when I say glass, it was a fairly small sample which was a shame because it was a pretty decent drop. At previous evenings we were always given around half to three-quarters of a glass as a welcome drink but maybe the fact that there was more people there than usual limited what they could pour out.
The wines on show for tasting were three whites and 6 reds which included a Port. We started with the whites and a Spanish Godello the Montenovo 2014 from the Galicia region of northern Spain which I have tasted previously and bought a few bottles of. I love Godello, I love the texture and the freshness of it, this one was unoaked and fairly dry with a hint of pineapples and tropical fruits, it pairs beautifully with any fish dish. Next up was the Sancerre ‘Clos des Bouffants 2014’ which was Laura’s favourite white being a big lover of Sauvignon Blanc or as she calls it (Sovvy Bee). I thought it was Ok, minerally and steely with bright acidity as you would expect from a Sancerre but it just lacked something. Lastly, my favourite white the excellent ‘Domaine Saint Ferreol Viognier 2013’ This had a fantastic aroma of peaches and apricots and tastes of rich tropical fruits, complex layers and a lovely creaminess to the finish, this really was very nice indeed.
Whites done we fought our way through the crowded warehouse which was starting to fill up rapidly and made our way to the reds table. On show this time were some pretty heavy hitting bottles and all pretty pricey. Chateau Musar (£21), Masi Amarone (£27), Penfolds Bin 2 Shiraz (£13.32), CNDP Capouliers (£13.32), Pomerol La Pointe (£19.99) and a Fonsecca in 27 Port (£10).
I particularly enjoyed the Penfolds Bin 2 Shiraz, with ripe rich red fruits, liquorice and mocha, the Pomerol La Pointe which was the second wine from Chateau La Pointe, was also excellent with classic blackcurrants, wood, smoke and mocha. The Chateau Musar was impressive as always but the Chateaunuef -du-Pape and the Amarone were for me a little disappointing, didn’t get around to trying the Port. John and Laura were less enthusiastic about the reds although Laura quite liked the Pomerol.
All wines in the winter tasting complete we decided to investigate the free tasting counter in which we found a few gems, notably the Wakefield Shiraz which for me and John was the star of the night and only £8.99 on Multi buy. This was aromatic with stewed dark fruits, slightly floral, spicy and chocolatey, a real treat. Another very good red was the strangely named La La Land Malbec from Australia.
This was another brilliant night at Majestic even if it was a little more hectic than normal but judging by the amount of people with full baskets of wine walking around the shop a successful one for the staff although I suspect that was a fair bit of clearing up to do after but I’m sure it was worth it.
We all ended up buying our favourites and going home happy with a few boxes of vino.