A Call My Bluff Wine Evening at Perkins.

8 of the WING group had the pleasure of attending the latest of the Perkins Wine Series at the Carriage Hall on 19th June. This was an evening modelled on Call My Bluff. Five wines were served Blind through the evening: 4 before a typically scrumptious fish pie, the last with an impeccable crème brûlée…

Before I report on the wines, I have to say it was a thoroughly enjoyable, and well lubricated, evening – with lovely food. I’d certainly do it again……

As each wine was served blind, Peter Bamford, David Bennett and Jonathan Perkins each gave us their tasting thoughts and consequent identification of the wine. Only one was truthful, the game was to identify who that was….

The first wine was a bubbly Rosé: Very pale pink, with a strawberry nose, restrained acidity on the palate, soft slightly sweet fruit and quite a coarse mousse.
But was it: an Italian from the Prosecco area? A Cava, with Grenache and Pinot providing the colour? Or an English Rosé?

The second wine was white. A nutty pungent nose, slightly gluey notes with some herby elements. Palate had lemon peel bitterness, but a fine texture and showed development, and interest, in the glass.
But was it: A white Gaillac, mostlY Sauvignon Blanc with Mauzac and Muscadelle? Siegfried Estate Chardonnay from Nelson in NZ? Or an Old Bush Vine Chenin from South Africa with a touch of Semillon in it?

The third wine was red. Quite pale with Germolene notes at first then soft plummy fruit and a floral hint. Palate has a hard edge, a long acid line, some spice and a warm finish.
But was it: A Negrette / Syrah / Malbec blend from Fronton? A light Hawkes Bay Syrah from New Zealand? Or a fresh short-skin contact Barbera from Piedmonte?

A second red, the fourth wine was a richer colour with a smokey nose and herby aromatics. The palate had dusty slightly minty, or at least aromatic herb-tinged, tannins, With a slightly bitter laurel-leaf finish.
But was it: A 2007 Haut Medoc? A 2005 Loire Cabernet Franc? Or a Bulgarian Cabernet Sauvignon from Svishtov?

Finally, with dessert, a slightly Diesel wine with dazzling limey acidity and only a little sweetness. Obviously a Riesling.
But was it: Framlingham Estate from NZ? A German Spätlese from the Nahe produced by Dönnhoff? Or A Noble Rot wine from Paul Cluver in South Africa.

Nobody got all 5 correct, the winner was the only person to score 4. Two WING people got 3, but – to my shame – the Corkmaster failed with all 5 (as did 2 or 3 others… obviously serious wine experts ☺).

In every case I (correctly) identified one (seemingly) obvious Bluff: Cava; SA Chenin; Fronton; Bordeaux; and SA Noble Riesling. So far so good, but I then – in every case – incorrectly guessed between the two remaining choices.


The correct answers were:
The Prosecco-area Italian; the Gaillac; the 11.5% alcohol NZ Syrah; the Loire Cabernet Franc (how did I get that wrong?); and the NZ Riesling.

For each wine I was seduced by the more cogent appraisal of the wine, I think. Part of Call My Bluff is making the truth seem hesitant and made up, as I now realise.

Anyway, in recognition of my failure I have now provisionally suspended my title of Corkmaster, at least until the next Blind Tasting on Friday.

Until then……