Creating the restaurant wine list is a real challenge because there are so many factors that come into play. The most common mistake is to place wines according to one's personal taste without taking into account the type of clientele one has or wants to have. In fact, one of the first causes of restaurant closures is the ego of the owners who create a small temple to which they sacrifice their own money because the only ones who actually make sacrifices are themselves. The second most common mistake is to only look at the price and how much you can earn from a single bottle without thinking in perspective. That is why I always recommend attending these small Masterclass organised at events such as the Milan Wine WeekAbove all, they provide food for thought and discussion with those who distribute wine... such as Partesa.

Partesa is a beverage distributor of the Heineken Group Italy founded in 1989 that also deals with wine distribution with around 40 exclusive wineries. At the Milano Wine Week he organised 2 Masterclasses on Thursday 8 October, one in particular dedicated to foreign wines, which I was pleased to attend. The wines tasted were:

  • Champagne Grande Sendrée 2009, Drappier
  • Sancerre Blanc "Les Chasseignes" 2018, Raimbault
  • Herreletten Riesling Alte Reben 2017, Weegmüller
  • Chablis Vieilles Vignes 2018, Hamelin
  • Chablis 1er Cru Beauroy 2017, Hamelin
  • Chassagne Montrachet Abbaye de Morgeot 2017, Leroux

If you are used to reading what I post, you know that I have a soft spot for this kind of wine so I just couldn't miss this tasting! 🤩

However, I promised to suggest 3 wines that you should add to your restaurant's list if you are a wine operator, but also that you should choose when you go to a restaurant if you are a winelover! Before telling you which of these I chose and why, I will give you an overview of all 6 tastings.

milan wine week 2020 champagne drappier

Champagne Grande Sendrée 2009, Drappier

It is an intense and brilliant straw yellow. The perlage is fine, not particularly numerous and persistent. The nose presents evolved notes of butter and pastry with a pleasant finish of exotic fruit. In the mouth it is crisp, fresh, consistent, rather savoury and long on the finish.

Not bad, but not convincingly value for money. The bubble in particular I justify in a 2009 and in general it has notes that are too evolved in relation to the vintage. If you want me to recommend some great champagnes to put on your list leave me a comment at the bottom of the article!

milan wine week 2020 sancerre raimbault

Sancerre Blanc "Les Chasseignes" 2018, Raimbault

It is bright straw yellow, not particularly consistent. The nose is intense and distinctive with notes of white tea, chestnut flowers, candied citron, incense and a slight reduction. In the mouth it is more convincing with a great acid shoulder, very fresh, very savoury and intense. Consistent in taste, it is enriched with vanilla notes and blood orange juice. Elegant and with a long finish.

Another wine I really liked, but that I have a weakness for Sauvignon you already know! Perhaps the wines I recommend are four and not three... because this one really deserves it too! It is made from old vines that have their roots in limestone soils. The whole process is designed to preserve its splendid aromas.

milan wine week riesling alte reben

Herrenletten Riesling Alte Reben 2017, Weingut Weegmüller

It is a brilliant straw yellow, not particularly consistent. The nose is characteristic of this type of young riesling with intense notes of pink grapefruit, dandelion blossom, pineapple and a slight hydrocarbon. in the mouth it is consistent, fat, very fresh and savoury with a rather long citrus finish. The residual sugar is stemmed by the great acidity.

The noble Weegmüller family, originally from Zurich, moved to the beautiful Rhine Valley around 1657 to produce wine. This Spätlese Trocken Riesling strikes a perfect balance of fruit and hydrocarbons with a structured and very fresh mouthfeel that allows for a variety of pairings.

milan wine week chablis hamelin

Chablis Vieilles Vignes 2018, Domaine Hamelin

It is a brilliant straw yellow. The nose is intense and spectacular, exciting! Notes of white flowers, buttered toast and hazelnut intertwine with candied mandarin to fade into a mineral, iodine accent. In the mouth, it is consistent, fat, smooth, elegant, fine and spicy. It has a soft, toasty, rather long finish.

We are in Burgundy, the chardonnay grapes come from a vineyard that is over 70 years old and has its roots in limestone soil. A wine with an astonishing quality/price ratio.

milan wine week 2020 chablis premier cru

Chablis 1er Cru Beauroy 2017, Domaine Hamelin

It is bright straw yellow, fairly consistent. The nose is buttery, herbaceous with a hint of saltiness and a white chocolate finish. In the mouth it is consistent, very fresh, elegant, quite savoury and with great ageing potential. Long, citrusy finish.

More closed than the previous one, I recommend it only if you have the patience to wait a few years for it to express its full potential. For a restaurant that doesn't want to keep a lot of capital tied up in its cellar, it is preferable to buy the previous one: it costs less and makes a better impression on the end customer. Don't worry even if it is not a 1er Cru like this one: if they order you a Chablis that is not exactly the most fashionable appellation there is, they are probably customers who are either curious or with a minimum of preparation capable of not dwelling on 'sti f*ck it' premier cru.

milan wine week champagne montrachet wines burgundy

Chassagne Montrachet Abbaye de Morgeot 2017, Benjamin Leroux

It is bright straw yellow, quite consistent. The nose is crazy, crazy, still crazy: an orgasm. Elegant and intense, fine and with smoky notes of cedar wood, vintage 1997 Nicaraguan cigar, peanut butter, yellow peach. In the mouth it is consistent, very fresh, elegant, exciting. Long smoky finish.

Buy it, order it, steal it when no one is looking... no, maybe not that! 😆 Blessed Burgundy, with chardonnay nobody beats you. It's addictive, and not exactly a cheap bottle. But I assure you it's money not well spent, well spent! Benjamin Leroux has half a hectare in this wonderful Premier Cru of Morgeot and his old vines over 70 years old are rooted in limestone soil with a small proportion of clay.

Milan Wine Week: The 3 Partesa wines I recommend

 

The first advice is Herreletten Riesling Alte Reben 2018 by Weingut Weegmüller. I have tasted practically every vintage and it is a wine that never fails, especially with the raw fish and shellfish that I adore. The first time I tasted it was in one of my absolute favourite restaurants: Tentazioni Ristorante in Costa Volpino (BG). Try the crudités of Sandro Pittelli with this Riesling (on the menu it comes out to under €30) and write to thank me!

The second wine I recommend is the Chablis Vieilles Vignes 2018, Hamelin because it is very good value for money, it is delicious and ready to drink. Of course it can evolve a lot in the bottle, but even now it makes a wonderful impression! It goes very well with carpaccio of lake and sea fish or raw or sautéed seafood.

The third wine is the Chassagne Montrachet Abbaye de Morgeot 2017, Benjamin Leroux that is spectacular, incredible, unforgettable. To be drunk on its own for meditation, or paired with any goose-based preparation and certain fatty cheeses that... mmmh.

Then there is that Sancerre...

Cheers 🥂

Chiara

You can leave me a comment at the bottom of the page or how about discovering the Lugana wines that I liked best in this other Milan Wine Week 2020 Masterclass?

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