In something of an understatement, it’s been a while since I blogged. But as things settle down after the summer-we-never-had and the various COVID scares, I’m hoping some semblance of normality will return. How many times have we all said that in the last couple of years…?

Anyway, a good crop of BYO offerings yesterday, starting with Clive Dickens and his mate on T20, who brought in a bottle of 2020 Tolpuddle Pinot Noir. This is the Tasmanian offshoot of Shaw+Smith, and one of the most consistent Tassie Pinots around. But it’s becoming increasingly rare these days. The restaurant’s entire allocation last year was six bottles – almost not worth putting on the wine list really, but I’m holding on cos it’s so good!

T70 played host to Linda & Doug Henry, who were getting ready to see their daughter married in the morning. Doug told me it was a Champagne only dinner, and they started well with a bottle of 2009 Billecart-Salmon brut. Fabulous wine, almost as good as the 2008 (of which I still have a few bottles left on the wine list, by the way), with lovely bready complexity highlighting superb fruit – and what length! The first of my top three wines for today.

They followed that up with more Billecart, this time the non-vintage rosé. Billecart are known for their rosés, and it’s not hard to see why. Rose hip and strawberry dominate the nose, but again that brioche complexity underpins everything into a seamless whole. They then finished up with a bottle of Veuve Clicquot rosé from our list, a big full-bodied bruiser of a rosé perfect for main course. Love your work, Henry family!

Stu and Angela were in sitting up on the High Counter as usual. They brought in a 2013 Cyril Henschke Cabernet Sauvignon, amongst other things including a slightly too young 2018 Rockford Basket Press Shiraz. The Cyril was just starting to hit its straps however, with remarkable length in the classic Henschke style. Still some primary blackcurrant fruit, but the real excitement was in mid-palate, where the cigar box is having a fight with some gravelly tannins. Great wine, and in the top three for the day.

At the next table over (T52), Nicola Snell and friends had a couple of interesting bottles. A 2016 Yalumba ‘Signature’ Cabernet was looking good, hinting at its potential with great bones underneath some yet to blossom flesh. Again, a bit too young to really show its best. No problems for the other wine they brought, a 2019 Moorooduc ‘Robinson Vineyard’ Pinot Noir. from the Mornington Peninsula. An exceptionally good wine, showing a beautiful red fruit nose with a dusting of star anise. The palate was silky smooth, with the glorious Pinot tannins that winemakers would kill for on the palate. My third finalist, and Wine of the night!

Many thanks to all of you BYO Bunnies who make Wednesday so interesting and fun more us here at PDR. Keep ‘em coming, please!

Cheers LC

image supplied by@_billecart