95 Reserve de la Comtesse: A ruby-garnet core with a cherry rim and clear meniscus revealed bright fresh red fruits and a touch of sweetness, mineral tones, cinnamon and white pepper on the nose. Ripe red cherries, raspberries and spices on the palate with a nice tannic grip and medium plus acidity. The wine gained a fair bit of weight after a couple of hours exhibiting dark chocolates, mocha, anpan and light soya sauce towards the end.
98 Justin Vineyard Isosceles: Dark, deep garnet with a bricking rim. A little cloudy. A surprising whiff of petai greeted the first couple of pours layered by very ripe cherries, aged pu er tea leaves and strong scents of tobacco. Ripe black fruits on the palate with a grainy texture and heavy tannins and medium plus acidity. Powerful and strong. Developed into some sweet candied hawthorn fruits with sufficient aeration.
So what’s the verdict? I liked both wines. Though I would have preferred Justin’s Isosceles with the roast duck and roast pork without the disturbing “petai” aroma (think green flavours). The Reserve de la Comtesse displayed a lot of finesse and could have been consumed without much food. If I had to make a purchase decision, it would be the Pauillac – with or without the roast meats.
Oh, did I mention I grew up in a town where the aborigines harvest the wild petai which are normally found mounted precariously on the surface of the Malaysian mountains? 😛
Btw, that’s the Jean-Lallement Brut Rose I had before the two bottles of red. Very aromatic but a little hollow in the mid-palate.