Mon 01 Oct 2012

Points Or Pleasure?

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Pichon Lalande 1990Last week I was fortunate to share a special bottle of claret over lunch with Ben Glaetzer, star Barossa winemaker and supplier of The Wine Society, who was visiting our head office to show his wines to members of staff.

The bottle in question was Château Pichon Lalande from the stand-out 1990 vintage. I had chosen it. But on my way to lunch I checked the global bible for Bordeaux ratings, aka Robert Parker’s excellent Guide to Bordeaux, and discovered it had scored a mere 79 points.

Oh dear.

No time to find an alternative so I stuck with it. And I’m so pleased I did, as it turned out to be delicious, elegant and perfectly poised. We drank the lot.

I am not suggesting that Mr Parker misjudged this wine: no doubt if we had compared it to other top estates from 1990, it may have looked inferior. Yet on the day the sheer drinking pleasure, modesty and class of this claret was nigh-on perfect for the occasion.

Pierre Mansour
Society Buyer

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