jamie goode's wine blog: Working for free

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Working for free

One of the balancing acts you play is a freelancer is between the gigs you do for free versus the paying gigs. I had a busy day today, none of which directly earned me any money. That's OK - I can choose to accept or decline invitations. No one forces me. It's a balancing act.

This morning I was tasting at WSET for Wine and Spirit magazine. It was a tasting of 56 Carmeneres and 28 Pinot Noirs from Chile, organized by Jane Parkinson, one of the team at the Wines of Chile Awards in Santiago. Other journalists attended, including Beverley Blanning who was also one of the WOCA team. So a bit of a reunion. Tasting 84 wines conscientiously is quite hard work, and it took until after 2pm.

Then I trogged off to Flat White, a Kiwi coffee shop in Soho to meet with fellow wine blogger Robert McIntosh, who is busy organizing a European wine bloggers conference for the end of August. We had an interesting discussion, and the Flat White is a very fine coffee experience.

I had a short while after this to finish my presentation for this evening's talk at the Science Museum's Smith Centre, which was a wine tasting combined with a presentation on wine science. A really interesting group of patrons were present (if I had some money spare I'd love to give some to the science museum, who do some excellent work), and the evening went very well. The wines I poured, each designed to fit with a wine science theme, were as follows:

Yes, they're all from Waitrose, but this is just because I had to select from a single retailer, and they had some very good options. The Musar was the most popular! It was a really enjoyable evening - I'm quite lucky that standing in front of a group of people doesn't worry me, and I enjoy the evening just as much as if I was a punter. So I think this is something I shall do more of. Pictured is a set of ivory anatomical figures dating back to the 17th and 18th centuries, currently on display at the Smith Centre.


At 5:59 AM, Blogger Jason Melnik said...

Hello, I am Australian and I am embarrassed that the Australian wines you looked at from waitrose were Green Point ZD and worst of all Yellow Tail. Dear Lord!! See what we have done to our international reputation, we are too focussed on telling everyone we make cheap cr@p. I'm not surprised the Musar won out, least because we all know the general public love brett. have a look at BenandWine.com for some homegrown top drops, although it may be hard to find them in the UK. I found him through hubpages. i like his style. Cheers J

At 9:14 AM, Blogger Robert McIntosh said...

Thanks Jamie. Flat White was certainly a great discovery. It is surprisingly hard to find good coffee in London. Now to start a whole site about coffee tasting and comparing the coffee cultures of Spain, Italy, New Zealand and the USA. That could be fun.

Glad you got your presentation finished.

Thanks for your time on such a busy day and I'll keep you updated on how plans progress.

At 10:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Musar considered Bretty?

I agree with the Yello Tail comment, by the way, was it intended as contrast? Waitrose have some much better stuff from down under, don't they?

Howe did they like the Minervois? I really like it but when I served it up to others they were not so keen. They thought it was too tannic and were rubbing their teeth.

At 5:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the Pope considered religious?

At 11:43 PM, Blogger Jamie said...

Let me reassure you: the yellowtail was deliberately included as the last wine to illustrate a particular point - the growing trend in commercial red wines to add grape juice concentrate to sweeten things up a bit.

The Minervois isn't an easy wine, but it went down pretty well.


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