The summer had turned to autumn but with no rain, lovely sunshine and and balmy temperatures for late September in Manchester, the weather was set fair for our wine tasting at the Innside; and what a treat we were in for!
A diverse set of 13 wines were available for the 82 Commandeurs and their guests to sample with some tasty whites and an unctuous Sauternes that seemed to be bitter and sweet in the same mouthful. There was also an interesting selection of reds from different appellations in Bordeaux and from various terroirs and classifications. This was also a chance to meet up with friends and make new introductions to some of our guests from other food and wine appreciation societies.
You would already have thought that you had had “your money’s worth” after such a consistently interesting set of wines, but more treats were in store when we moved to the dining room for our meal. There were a “delightful” selection of classy wines that laid in wait for our taste buds.
Commandeurs and their guests were thrilled to find a mature set of Classé wines exhibiting all the qualities that make Bordeaux wines so enjoyable. The fruitiness of youth had been replaced by some well-rounded and balanced tannins (a bit like some of the Commandeurs?) and few can have had such a pleasant opportunity to taste such quality wines against each other in such convivial surroundings. The normal murmurings of pleasure were also added to by exclamations of surprise when (with the aid of online technology) the “official” scores and retail prices of some of these gems were discovered.
Unsurprisingly, in such august company on the palate, the food was less of an issue, though this was generous, and well cooked. It also accompanied the wines well, allowing them to show their capacity to be enjoyed as much with food in their own right.
This was an informal occasion but it did offer a chance to make a number of thank yous. We were able to thank Commandeur Robert Watson and appoint him a Commandeur Meritant. A couple of generations younger, we were also pleased to be able to host the designer of this web site - Joe Joscelyne of Tigerstripe Designs. We finally thanked our hosts at Innside and toasted Her Majesty, The Queen (the Duke of Lancaster) and the Commanderie.