So this was a rather long time in the coming – Pandemics do that I guess. It was really fun fourball of an evening with three like-minded companions! Cube is a cracking restaurant not far from Bond Street tube. I am no expert on Japanese cuisine but that is mainly because, seemingly, I like it all! “Egon” did the ordering here – always better to have one person I feel.

We went with a “quick blind” format – 5 minutes or so to taste and discuss and may be have a punt at what things were and then the reveal. First up was Dom Ruinart Blanc de Blancs 2004. Really good, mellow and to me tasting like it had more age. I mean this positively. Dosage seemed in the normal 4g-6g range and the wine developed well in glass, especially once we got it into wine glasses. Very good. As a general comment it is quite difficult to understand where Dom Ruinart is positioned vis a vis the Ruinart range.

So as the food started to rain down on us it was white time and this Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Pucelles 2005, Domain Leflaive was in fine fettle. The guesses (Egon and I knew what it was) where understandably in the more Meursault camp but also had it as younger. I think this tells you a lot about the 2005 vintage which has always been richer and enjoyably hedonistic. There was a lovely bit of that tell tale reduction here. A bottle bang on form.

Now to my offering. Serving top end young Barolo is almost the biggest serving dilemma there is. Will it pay extended air or is pop and pour better. I hedged my bets and for the Barolo Brunate 2011, Giuseppe Rinaldi I did a double decant at about 4pm and put the cork back in. It turned out (more luck than judgement) to be the right call as this was signing well. The warmer vintages of Piedmont (and arguable Burgundy) are in my view best served cooler to counteract any warmth of the fruit character. There was a lovely blend here of a bit of red fruit, some darker and a little spice with a dash of saline. This wine will clearly age but I prefer it sooner rather than later to maximize the fruit.

Now it was to be Haut Brion 1988 and this was as with the earlier bottles just showing as it should. None to the slight leanness you can get from 1988 just a proper succulently textured, iron and fruit palated delight. Again this will age but the balance now is spot on for me. An exact illustration of what Bordeaux is about. Savoury but with fruit texture, great tannins and an easy completeness. First growth in every way.

We needed/wanted to buy from the list and where do you go? More red? Sweet? Well we decided back to fizz – at a good price and from the same vintage as the Dom Ruinart – we went for Pol Roger Winston Churchill 2004 it turned out to be (no surprise) a good choice. Rich but not heavy. Lovely elements of toast and a deeper nearly yellow fruits. There will be real intensity to come…

And with that we were done. As a fourball I think we will need to get a few more tee-times lined up – Thanks chaps!

Food pics below – strongly recommended.