When I was a kid, every time I watched old Hollywood movies, Roman soldiers eat and drink massively after the victory. Gargling red wine in the golden goblet, cuddling Egyptian waitress who dress very little. How excited they are!
I imagined the red wine should be overwhelmed with the aroma of fruits and honey. It must be at least more delicious than Greensport orange juice. However my first experience with alcohol was not that pleasant. Especially beer, the bitterness is so unagreeable. I could hardly understand why adults are so fond of it.
Like many Hong Kongers of my age, my drinking path is from gin, brandy, vodka, tequila, champagne, white wine red wine, only the Matues Rose tasted similar to my childhood imagination. Well, with my limited spending power, it is acceptable as a summer thirst quenching wine.
After drinking for A decade or more, the top five of the classify Bordeaux still cannot satisfy the longing of my childhood dream wine. A bottle of 1947 château Petrus Jerobaum I drank in 1996 was almost there. I procured it for a famous foodie tycoon in town. It was for entertaining his guests. I open the wine four hours before the party for breathing. Aromas it should have started emerging after a quarter. I then covered the decanter and filtered the muddy racked wine with a coffee filter paper. That was my bonas. Cherry, hawthorn, jujube, plume came layer after layers. Alcohol and tannins were very mellowed and subtle. That was the wine I dreamed of. That moment I envied Faust. Hello Satan! Take my soul and give me good wine in return, please!
Not sure if I complain a lot because I am getting old. Lately I feel things are not so good as the old times. Food is the case and wine is even worse. I recalled I opened a bottle of Chateau Certan at the Palm Grill Restaurant on the Lock Road in TST in 1988. The entire restaurant in the basement was filled with its aromas. Last year I had not so good experience with a bottle of 2000 Haut Brion, 1997 Mouton Rothschild and Clerc Milon 2009. I strongly doubt if those were real ones. To keep the pride of the wine owner, I kept silent.
To satisfy my childhood imagination of good wine, I guess I do not need to sell my soul when I came across Stephane Bannwarth’s wine. His making of wine comes at his finger tips and be as the grape. He decides what to make according to the performance of the each varietal of each different harvest. Sometimes sweet, sometimes dry, sometime still and sometimes sparkling. He let grapes speak for themselves and never be pretentious.
Stephane is not formally trained as an oenologist. He admires many orange wine masters and mimic their philosophy and develops his own style. His <<Muscat Frizz >>copies the <<Puro Rose>> of Movia of Slovenia. It is undisgorged and aged on lees in the bottle. It turns up to be innocent with serenity. It is as stunning as the nude dancing scene of the movie Manon de Source. Who can hold the stirring!
Three years ago, I was fascinated its aromas of white rose, white peony tea, lychee, almond, sweet spice. It was complex in a naive way, overwhelmed with fruits and floral notes on the nose but stone dry on the palate. The finish was long with a clever acidity at the end that lured me kept drinking. I tasted another bottle in January, it was getting more voluptuous with remarkable white peach and ginger. One day I was drinking home alone and could not finish the whole bottle. I sealed it with a Champagne stopper. 3 days later, it turned up to be like Wakayama white peach and Concubine’s Smile Lychee. I guess cellar potential of this bottle with lees can be another decade or more.
Good wine does not have to be expensive. It depends on the passion of the maker. It does not have to be over crafted and noisy. Same philosophy to all alcohol, I should not have crucified Carlsberg. Thanks Stephane to have save my soul!
Laurent Bannwarth Muscat Frizz 2016 0.75L
原價 Original HKD 468
早鳥優惠 Early Bird 12 bottle瓶 HKD4776
P.S. Wine is naturally muddy. Pressure inside the bottle is 6 times the Earth’s atmosphere. Please chill up to 2 degree centigrade from bottom to top before opening to avoid splashing. Keep it in freezer for 1.5 hours. Open once it leaves the freezer and your hands should avoid direct contact to the bottle to create a temperature difference. Get your big glass stand by when opening.
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