Vosne-Romanée 1999, Domaine Renée Engel
London enjoyed one day of snow at the beginning of April so a hearty wine was required to warm the nether reaches. We tasted this at the excellent Taiwanese restaurant Hunan in Chelsea where Michael the sommelier has a secret stash for frequent (Taiwanese) diners. This Vosne from the highly-reputed Engel initially lurked at the back of the glass like a hermit crab that refuses to come forth from its shell. After 10 minutes a tantalising confusion of blood orange, medium leather and dates became apparent. Another ten minutes offered a mix of damson and dried bracken. Thankfully the wine still had that inimitable Vosne depth and velvet dark berry fruit. Splendid complement to the dish of the evening (there were 15 to choose from) the Chinese herb steamed duck. Engel has a well-deserved reputation and I doubt there is any of this lovely mature Vosne left at Hunan.