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Updated: Jun 10

Classic ruby, tight rim. Fragrant dry purple and red flowers. Fresh red cherries, blackcurrants and dark cherries on the first nose. Lightish- it noses sandalwood, dusty, meaty, cedary with a touch of wood spice on the second. Round, easy and full on the palate - well balanced- with adequate length leading to medium finish reflecting grapes characters. Every easy to drink.

As a humble CB classification and origin, Chateau Senejac 2013 is not as full as 2012; it is slightly fresher and has intensity re-designed with creating certain complexities in blending 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc and 4% Petit Verdot to start. It is oak fermented, nurtured in French oak for 15 months, where 33% is new. Grapes handpicked and sorted. Vines are 45-year-old; sufficient production to provide good economies of scale. From excellent vintage showing outstanding balance, structure and phenolic ripeness, this wine shouts quality for the class and is stylistically akin to a mature Arsac Margaux. We think that's good because this wine has thus been aggressively priced low! Indeed,

The score is decent at 88 points levels.

Deep ruby with a tight pink rim. The first nose of bursting red fruit followed by ripe dark cherries, damson earthy sweet spices, leather and smoke. On the palate, simple pure dark fruit parallelled eith spice shines through along with fine tannins, lovely acidities and fresh+clean finish. Fresh fruit.The style is excellent with only 5gram sugar per litre where perceived alcohol is appropriate despite its 14% ABV. Decanter Aisa Wine Award 2018 Best in the Show as well as Best Rhone Varietals! Decanter 96 Points! Youthfully jubilant!

Also awarded 93 WA,- "From very old vines, looks to be outstanding, with terrific notes of lavender, garrigue and flowers grounded by a core of darker berry fruit. Rich, seamless and downright polished, it’s a no-brainer purchase that will offer tons of pleasure through 2025.”Grape Varietals:70% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre

AC Cairanne is one of France's newest appellations from the 2016 vintage (or 15 if wineries met the new rules). A good quaffing wine from the Rhône from a great year.

Deep purple colour with purple hues, this top wine is richly carved and is fresh with black fruits mixed with notes of spices and undergrowth. It is dense and perfumy; supple and bodied(ABV 15%); not much nuance to start and without undue concentration; chalky and rippling finish. 

Yes, it is a Rhone CDP lacking the Bordeaux and Burgundian tannic structure, offers a different fruit profile and a road less travelled, the bottle I tasted somehow finishes fast because it is delicious and beautiful, and so we just never have thought about decanting, which undoubtedly will bring even better complexity and structure. Decanted for about 1 hour, give or take, will be perfect. Have said that, I believe this is the wine best to consume now in the Autumn. Best with Cha Siu. 

THis 2016 vintage uses hand-picked grapes, traditional vinification, ageing in quarts of 25% in half-casks, 25% in casks, 25% in conical wooden vats, 25 in concrete tanks.  The blend is from centurion Grenache, Vaccarèse, Counoise, Mourvèdre, Cinsault, Terret Noir, Muscardin, Picpoul, Clairette sourced from more than different parcels scattered among the appellation. How can Xavier do this so well and the fruit is so vibrant? Why this tastes is so focused? Intriguing. I got this as a present from my supplier who is leaving the company. I confessed I belittle this bottle even though I heard quite some about the breadth and depth of the work by Xavier Vignon Southern Rhone Valley including Raymond Usseglio, La Nerthe, Gardine,  Mont Redon, Maucoil and others. I like the name Cuvee Anonyme( literally no-name), which I came across in my first Sociology class. 

Parker gives 95+ points, saying, "The striking 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Anonyme is 60% Grenache, 25% Mourvèdre and the rest minor varieties (there's no Syrah). Aged in a mix of foudres, demi-muids, barriques and concrete tanks, it shows hints of mocha and toast on the nose, but the blackberry and red plum fruit is mouthwatering and fresh, richly concentrated and spicy. Full-bodied, it manages to be ripe, silky and concentrated, while remaining crisp on the lengthy finish. Tasted twice, with consistent notes."Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 95+ Points

It is commented well by Jeb Dunnuck, saying, "The 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Anonyme is the flagship and is mostly Grenache that was sourced from numerous terroirs throughout Châteauneuf-du-Pape and brought up in a mix of tank and barrels (some new). It offers a rocking bouquet of black raspberries, blueberries, lavender, Asian spices, and graphite. Like all of Xavier's 2016s, it has purity, freshness, and richness, yet still packs ample richness and depth. Give this full-bodied, elegant red another few years, and it will keep for a decade." Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com, 95 Points

This is a consolidation of the tasting and papers

written from 2006 to 2013. These write-ups had been with the orginal site Wine and Beyond, Yahoo, until the service stopped by Yahoo in September 2013.


For years I have been working with wines, either buying it, selling it to wine companies, lecturing and writing about it, and, not unimportantly, enjoying it with friends. If any of the articles on this site are worth reading it is due to my teachers, my mentors, my peers and friends, my students, and in particularly my editors who ignite in me a desire to communicate in wines.


Clinging to the trellis of wine, I started to get more and more involved with estates and winemakers, by supporting them with consultancy in communication and marketing. The more I spend my time outside Hong Kong, the more I sense a desire to be part of the international wine family.


Writing about wine represents a moment of reflection, curiosity, atitudes and a desire to analyse often hidden structures and history, in an effort to make the wealth of wine accessible to a targetted, and hopefully larger audience.


I am not sure if I can wine proivde more accessible to all through this blog. But I am sure to write in wine means being involved in wine and  to remain as impartial and objective as possible.


Kevin Tang.

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