jamie goode's wine blog

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Day two of the IPNC

So, it's day two of the IPNC here in sunny McMinnville, OR. I got caught out last night by the diurnal temperature differential which is of Mendoza proportions: 80 degrees by day, 50 by night. Consequently, I froze as the dinner progressed and I was wearing just shirt sleeves. So today I hit downtown looking for some warmer clothing options. The only shop selling clothes, as far as I could tell, was a surf/skate dude shop. I shall be attending tonight's salmon bake looking like a wannabe 19 year old skateboarder.

Spare a thought for Tyler Colman whose Mac died on him. News travels fast, though. Someone came up to him today and said words to the effect of, 'Tyler, can **** have your power supply now you won't be needing it.'

This morning we had our seminar on sustainability. We began with the Jasper (Morris) and Dominique (Lafon) show, which Jasper chaired fantastically. We tasted Dominique's wines as he told us about his journey to biodynamie. We were about two thirds of the way through when one of the audience asked whether Dom could explain more about how he uses Vitamin E in his winemaking. It was a wonderful moment.
Then there was a panel with five Pinot Noir producers from around the world talking about their interest in sustainability. Ted Lemon, of Littorai outlined his four definitions of biodynamy.

  • The farm should be seen as a self-contained individuality, with the goal that it should be entirely self-sustaining
  • The material world is nothing more than condensed spirit, so we are farming the spirit rather than material.
  • The idea of using preparations is that by putting them on the ground it enhances the spirit dimension of your farm.
  • The enhanced wine and food grown using biodynamics gives us the force to confront the challenges of our lives.
Following the seminar there was a really nice lunch including some great wines, and also one of the most remarkable gastronomic experiences I've had. It was a suite of three bacon desserts. Yes, bacon. And they worked amazingly well. These were made by Cheryl Wakerhauser from Pix Patisserie in Portland.
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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Sustainability and cheese

Had lunch today with Dr Cecil Camilleri of Yalumba, who was keen to talk about the pioneering work he has initiated on sustainability. It's important, because this will be increasingly important in the wine industry. Also present was Valerie Lewis of Negociants (Yalumba's UK arm), and we ate at Black and Blue, an upmarket steak joint in Borough Market. Borough Market is a buzzy sort of place, and I like it.

I got there a little early, so I nipped into Neal's Yard to buy some cheese. Rather predictably, I walked out with a small chunk of Montgomery's, supplemented with a small chunk of Keen's. Both are fantastic. Keen's is a bit creamier, and while it has that spicy bite I really enjoy in cheddar, it's a little tamer (with a grassy, buttery mildness), than Montgomery's, which is so spicy and expressive it's a bit of an acquired taste. I'm not going to let RTL anywhere near these. To pair with these you are best off with a white wine: I don't think a red would work. I'm drinking a Henry Pelle Menetou Salon Morogues 2005, which doesn't quite have the richness to make a great match, but which does the job adequately well.

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