Cellar club celebration

Gerald Rillstone, Independent Hearld | Thursday, September 17, 2020

Lover of wine Alan Evans with one of his favourites a bottle of 1997 Chateau Troplong Mondot.
Lover of wine Alan Evans with one of his favourites a bottle of 1997 Chateau Troplong Mondot.

What better way to celebrate four decades of tasting great wine than to have Wellingtons best-known champion of the grape present a special selection from his own cellar.

And that’s what they did to celebrate the 40th birthday of the Cellar Club in Johnsonville with Alan Evans presenting a range of wines from his own collection.

It was, some say, one of the most prestigious tastings in the 40 years of the club’s existence.

Alan joined the club in 1987 and has held the roles of Editor 10 years and President 8 years and was made a life member in 2010 and still attends the dinners and the occasional tasting.

2017 Troplong Mondot St Emilion Grand Cru
2017 Troplong Mondot St Emilion Grand Cru

He is also a Past President of the Magnum Society that was a Wellington-based wine group founded in 1972. “We buy wines that we will be drinking in about ten years time or whatever the drinking window is he says which is a lot of fun and a bit of a gamble too,” Alan says.

“We have tastings going up to around 2034.”

He is also the cellar master for the Tinakori branch of the International Beef Steak and Burgundy Club.

Alan’s love of wine was a natural progression, he says, from an interest in ciders in the 1960s to the wines of Henderson in the mid-1970s. He has an extensive temperature-controlled cellar and over the years has developed a love of European wines which he augments with premium NZ and Australian varietals.

He says these days he has the luxury of having access to a plethora of online reviews so he has a fair idea of what a wine is going to be like before he tastes it.

“I do a lot of reading about what’s new and what to expect from the wine and I am not as surprised as I used to be but there are still surprises,” he says.

Alan says the Troplong Mondot they were tasting for the celebration, according to reviews, is best consumed around 2020 to 2022 and he has tried it and it is perfect.

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Alan Evans presenting – Sept 2020

Celebrating 40 years of tastings
Celebrating 40 years of tastings

Without a doubt, this would be one of the most prestigious tastings in the 40 years of the club’s existence.

And who better to present these wines, than one of our life members, Alan Evans.

Alan joined the club in 1987 and has held the roles of Editor [10 years] and President [8 years]. He was made a life member in 2010 and still attends our dinners and the occasional tasting.

He is also a Past President of the Magnum Society that was a Wellington-based wine group founded in 1972 and currently is the Cellar Master of the Tinakori branch of the international Beefsteak and Burgundy Club.

Alan’s love of wine was a natural progression, he says, from an interest in ciders in the 1960s to the wines of Henderson in the mid-1970s. He has an extensive temperature-controlled cellar and over the years has developed a love of European wines which he augments with premium NZ and Australian varietals.

2001 Penfolds 389
2001 Penfolds 389

The committee approached Alan to see if he would be prepared to present some of his premium cellared wines as one of our marquee events to celebrate our 40 years of tastings and he has not disappointed. The following list of wines is stunning.

  • 2016 Ogier Cote du Rhone White [Introductory wine]
  • 2016 Askerne Semillon
  • Loire Chenin Blanc
  • 2011 Penfolds 389 [from our own cellar]
  • 2001 Penfolds 389
  • 1991 Coleraine
  • 2017 Troplong Mondot [St Emilion Grand Cru]
1991 Te Mata Estate Coleraine
1991 Te Mata Estate Coleraine

The ’91 Coleraine was rated by a group of wine experts three years ago as the 5th best Coleraine ever made and is a personal favourite of John Buck, winemaker and Chairman of Te Mata Estate Winery. It was also rated by Geoff Kelly, alongside the 1987 Stonyridge Larose, as “one of the few great achievements in the first 26 years or so of cabernet and cabernet/merlot wine styles, in the modern phase of New Zealand viticulture”.

And if that isn’t enough to wet your taste buds, go and google our last wine.

As I said at the outset, this is a prestigious tasting of premium wines which I suspect, many of us have never tasted before. We are indeed lucky to have that opportunity this month.

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Off cruising, Apologies, Preparing the AGM

Off cruising

Well, Robin and Pat are off on their cruise. I’m not sure their itinerary allows much chance to try local wines, but I’m sure that they will have fun working their way through the selection provided by their cruise liner.`

Apologies

I was sorry that I missed our last tasting, but as fortune would have it, I did get to taste some of the left-over wines at our committee meeting the following week and I particularly enjoyed the Montepulciano D’Abrusso, I have even made a mental note to call by Regional wines and grab a bottle or two.

 

 

Preparing the AGM

Your committee has been busy preparing for the AGM and finalising our calendar for the rest of the year. Have a look later in this newsletter to see the exciting events that are now all in flight.

AGM in 2001

Attached to this Newsletter you will find the minutes from the 2018 AGM. The President and Treasurer will present their reports on the night and details will subsequently be made available on
the Club’s website for those who might be interested.

This is your club and the AGM does offer an opportunity to have your say and/or raise matters of interest. If you have ideas or thoughts to offer please don’t be shy to raise them.

See you there,

Cheers
Wayne Kennedy
Acting Editor

Robyn’s return, Payment advice, President’s Report & Financial Statement

Robyn’s return

It wasn’t overwarm in Sydney while we were there but I must say I don’t think I have been warm since our return. Never mind the tasting this month should go some way to warm the cockles of the heart. I have it on good authority that the AGM went well in my absence, and it is a pleasure to have Cecilia join in the ranks of our life members.

Payment advice

Please find attached a PaymentAdviceforJune2018 for this month’s meeting. The form provides an opportunity to pay your membership subscription, entry fee for the June tasting and the July Dinner. Please bring this with you next week (completed of course) or contact Wayne by email.

President’s Report & Financial Statement

I would like to remind members that if you are interested in looking at the President’s Report or Financial Statement from the AGM, they can be found on the club website.

Cheers
Robin Semmens, Editor

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AGM, Quote, Tastings

AGM

Attached to this Newsletter you will find the minutes from the 2017 AGM. The President and Treasurer will present their reports on the night and details will subsequently be made available on the Club’s website for those who might be interested. This is your club and the AGM does offer an opportunity to have your say and/or raise matters of interest. If you have ideas or thoughts to offer please don’t be shy to raise them.

Quote

While travelling in Hawkes Bay and visiting wineries (purely for research purposes you understand) Anne and Jenny came across the following quote. “anything is possible with a little lipstick and a great glass of wine.” Personally I will skip the lipstick and cut straight to the chase

Tastings

They also came across a couple of Hawkes Bay producers keen to present to the Club and as a consequence we have Unison for June and Clearwater for August. This will give members an opportunity to compare wines from a producer from the Gimblett Gravels area and one of the equally excellent producers from the more coastal Te Awanga area. Much to look forward to over the next few months.

Cheers
Robin Semmens, Editor

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Wine lovers invited to join Johnsonville’s cellar club

20160309_200542Independent Herald, 3 August 2016

Johnsonville’s Cellar Club is looking to extend its membership to those who are interested in wine. Club President Murray Jaspers said the Club, which was established in 1980, was not designed for “wine snobs”. Its objective is to allow members to learn about wines and wineries from people who work with and breathe wine – the winery owners, the winemakers or other winery representatives.

The club already has about 60 members but is looking to increase that number and invited locals to join one of the Club’s monthly meetings to find out what it was all about. At the monthly meeting in October the presenter will be Jane Hunter of Hunter Wines in Marlborough. Jane has a big international reputation so her presentation will, no doubt, be of immense interest, Cellar Club committee member Richard Taylor said.

“The monthly meetings are relaxed and friendly with plenty of opportunity to mix and mingle with other members.”  The gatherings are held on the second Wednesday of each month in the Johnsonville Community Centre with a 7.45pm start time. “There are also other social events staged during the year such as dinners, a barbeque and some tastings from the Club’s cellar,” Richard said. He said those who were interested should head along to the next meeting on August 10.

The annual membership cost is $25 per year with a door charge of between $12 and $16 to cover the cost of the wines that are on taste that night, room hire and supper. Offsetting this, Richard said, there are sometimes opportunities to purchase the presenters’ wines at discounted prices.

More information can be gathered from the Club’s website or by phoning Murray Jaspers on 479 3191 or Anne Meggat (Vice President and Membership) 478 8573.

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From the Editor – June 2015

Tasting programme

Things are now starting to settle and it looks like the rest of the year’s programme might actually proceed without the hitches that have upset the programme for the first half of the year. Having said that, and as my old Gran was fond of saying “it’s an ill wind that turns none to good”, the resulting changes have been very successful as is evidenced by this month’s tasting.

jenny-anne-2015

Vines of Nelson

Of course, some members may not fully understand the drive that leads your committee in the quest for new and interesting tastings. Below is a picture of your President and Secretary undertaking the arduous task of investigating the effects of terroir and climate on the vines of Nelson. Such deep and meaningful research is not foreign to us.

Cheers
Robin Semmens, Editor

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From the Editor: Sept 2013

Message from the President

Anne has prepared new Membership Cards for the year and they are available for collection at monthly meetings. Unless there is a special need Anne will not be posting cards out.

When you arrive at meetings please remember to place your number into the membership draw. This will save time at the meeting by ensuring the draw does not include members who are not present. Thanks for your cooperation.

Public Address System

The club is seeking to acquire a portable loud speaker/sound system for use at meetings. We are unable to access existing facilities at the community centre. Have any of our members expertise in this area, we are looking for someone to assist in sourcing a suitable, and appropriately priced, system. Please let someone on the committee know if you can assist.

Peter Lehmann

Many of you will be familiar with Peter Lehmann and his wines. The Lehmann brand has been a leading Barossa winery for many years.

Your committee has noted that Peter passed away on 28 June 2013. He was born in Angaston in the Barossa Valley in 1930. His father was a Lutheran Pastor, Franz Julius Lehmann, and Peter may have joined his father in the ministry but for Franz’ sudden death in 1945, aged 55. Peter soon dropped out of school “ostensibly to be some support to my recently widowed mother,” he says. After working at the Yalumba winery then becoming Winemaker/Manager at Saltram Wines. He parted company with Saltram to become the Chairman of Peter Lehmann Wine. Peter Lehmann has been described as one of Australia’s most respected and innovative wine makers.

Sad to see some of the older “characters of the Australian wine industry go, but his son does take over the work.

Offers to Members

The question of putting offers and advertisements to our members for wine or other products has been discussed. Your committee is concerned that we cannot be seen as acting as agents for the selling of wine or other products as we do not carry a license to do so. We are however a wine appreciation club and like to be able to ensure our members can access deals if they arise.

We have therefore adopted the following policy; “If the club receives an request to offer wine specials for whatever purpose, the club will be happy to publicise the “deal” or offer, but not to sell. We will inform club members about the deal only on the website as a link or email. The link/email will be directly to the supplier so that any transaction is between the supplier and the member, not the Cellar Club Inc.”

Offers will need to have a close off date and will be removed from the site after that date.

Cheers
Robin Semmens, Editor