Boy, do I get tired of Wine Fair Whinging™. There was a time when I felt that most people enjoyed a good wine fair. After all, what wine lover wouldn’t enjoy being in the exuberant company of like-minded individuals at an event where dozens – or even hundreds – of winemakers are pouring their wares…Continue reading Making a Discovery at a Wine Fair – It isn’t as Difficult as you Think
Talk about high expectations. After the very difficult 2014 vintage in Europe, 2015 has been universally acclaimed on the continent as being one of the best vintages of the century. Possibly one of the best vintages ever. Wonderfully healthy fruit on the vines – and plenty of it. Great weather with oft-ideal ripening conditions. In…Continue reading Anteprima Amarone 2015
Walt Disney famously remarked “whatever you do, do it well.” It is good advice, but before you can do what you do, sometimes it is helpful to find out what you can do, and what has the potential to be done well. On the shores of beautiful, scenic Lake Garda in northern Italy, Bardolino DOC…Continue reading Chiaretto: Bardolino Bets on Rosato
Maremma, Tuscany’s Underestimated Corner Driving south from Siena, I enjoyed experiencing the landscape and climate of Tuscany undergo nuanced changes. The vegetation became more spaced, the fields wider. The hills became more rolling. It was palpably warmer. Below the vines, the grains and the cypress trees the soils, which I obviously was not able to…Continue reading Maremma, Che Vini!
Utiel-Requena: Bobal Steps out of the Shadow of Bulk Wine The scene: southeast Spain, near to the Mediterranean A scant 70 kilometres (as the crow flies) from the heaving beaches and ancient attractions of València lies the comparatively quiet hinterland home of Utiel-Requena, one of Spain’s Denominación de Origen (DO) wine areas. You may not…Continue reading Utiel-Requena: Bobal Steps Out of Bulk Wine’s Shadow
What is Montecucco? We are in the warm south of Tuscany. Here, sandwiched between two well-known denominations specialising in Sangiovese, you will discover a third – much newer and very much less well-known – that benefits from similar advantages to its well-heeled neighbours, and which is producing some very characteristic, Sangiovese-based wines of high quality.…Continue reading Montecucco: Sangiovese’s best-kept secret
Can Amarone della Valpolicella age? It isn’t as strange a question as it might seem. Not all wines age well, and most of the Amarone more than ten years old that I have tried have been more tired than lively. Nevertheless, over the past 70 years Amarone has rightly secured a place as one of…Continue reading Can Amarone Age?
Barolo at its best: the epic tasting event Nebbiolo is the name of the grape responsible, in the right hands and conditions, for some of Italy’s – and the world’s – greatest red wines. Although planted in many places around the globe, nowhere else – so far – does it reach the heights to which…Continue reading Barolo: tasting across seven decades
Switzerland has it good with Paul Liversedge MW and his “Real Wines” Online Wine Shop Isn’t it the dream of most wine lovers to open their own wine shop, stocked with the best and most interesting bottles from the producers and regions that represent their own tastes? Unfortunately, unless they are also wealthy and not…Continue reading Real Wines and Paul Liversedge MW
Why Would Anyone Want to Taste a Wine After Four Weeks? I visited Stéphane Bannwarth of Domaine Laurent Bannwarth in Alsace a while back to find out how Qvevri wines are made – and how they taste when they are made from the local grapes. It was a fascinating and instructive visit, which you can…Continue reading Qvevri Pinot Gris 2012 – Domaine Laurent Bannwarth