2004 Chteau La Haye, Cru Bourgeois, St-Estphe, Bordeaux, France (£13.95, Wine Society, 01438-741177).
I have been buying this wine for years, enjoying it at home and also listing it at Bibendum Restaurant in the strategic and well-priced', St-Estphe slot. It's pretty difficult to find claret these days with age, breeding, some sort of authenticity (ie, it tastes of where the property is situated) and value (often the missing link), and this pretty property always ticks the boxes.
The wondrous French term qualit-prix, literally quality price', means so much more than our clumsy word value, as it is at a high in this wine. I practically fell over at a Wine Society tasting last week when I revisited this beautiful 2004. I wondered whether this wine was discounted to welcome new wine buying supremo Tim Sykes (a terrific signing if ever there was one) into the company, but no. He told me, sotto voce, that it was bought en primeur', years ago, and presumably didn't sell at the time and we are now all winners, because it is ludicrously cheap and totally sublime.
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Rustle up some spring lamb with this beauty it is heaven. Shock horror my current, excluding VAT, trade price for the 2007 vintage is more than this (including VAT) retail price! Get on the phone now.
Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year (www.matthewjukes.com).
Matthew Jukes has worked in the UK wine business for well over three decades and during this time has written 14 wine books.
Matthew regularly lectures, judges, speaks at wine conferences and runs masterclass tastings for both corporate and private clients all over the world. Matthew is also the creator of his ground-breaking initiative, the One Day Wine School, an indulgent day of tasting and learning first performed in 2006.
He has been the MoneyWeek wine correspondent since 2006 and has written a weekly column for the Daily Mail’s Weekend Magazine since 1999. His four highly-acclaimed, annual wine reports – the Burgundy En Primeur Report, the Bordeaux En Primeur Report, the Piemonte Report and the 100 Best Australian Wines – are published on his website, www.matthewjukes.com.
Matthew is one of the world’s leading experts on Australian wine and, with Brisbane-based wine writer Tyson Stelzer, runs an annual competition in Australia to find ‘The Great Australian Red’. He was made Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK at the 2012 Australia Day Foundation Gala dinner.
Matthew is a winner of the International Wine and Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year Trophy. His thoughts, recommendations and tastings notes are followed very closely by the wine world at large.
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