More fun in Canada

My Canadian adventure continued with a chance to live the Canadian dream – a quick trip Lake Muskoka with some of my new Canadian friends, and all-round good guy Ruud Madsaam of Staete Landt in New Zealand. We went out on a boat, swam, drank beer, chatted, went for a long run in the heat, […]

Fun at Enoteca Ascari, Toronto

Svetlana Atcheva of Enoteca Ascari at work on a Cotat wax capsule.

Monday evening in Toronto. A fun gathering of wine people at Enoteca Ascari.  You can’t capture an evening like this is a blog post, but there are some wines that I’d like to mention, because they were so good.

Derek Barnett

Derek Barnett, winemaker at […]

In Canada, day 3, Price Edward County

At Hinterland with Jonas and Vicki

So, my Canadian adventure continues. And this is turning into an epic trip. Such great people, and some seriously good wines. Day 3 was spent in Prince Edward County, which is a bit cooler than Niagara (for example, in winter it gets so cold here that the vines have […]

In Canada, day 2

A great day in Niagara wine country. 58 wines tasted at four different wineries. Lots learned. Helicopters flown in: 1.

The day started at Southbrook Vineyards, which was Canada’s first certified biodynamic wine producer. It’s an impressive, modern LEED-certified winery, too. I met with winemakers Ann Sperling and Brian Hamilton (above), and we tasted through a […]

In Canada, day 1

So, I am in Canada. For one night only, I’m staying in the very pretty resort town of Niagara on the Lake. I got here about 4 pm yesterday, arriving in beautiful sunshine and temperatures in the high 20s. The first thing I did was check the test match score (England pulled off a thrilling […]

Chateau Rahoul, an excellent white Bordeaux

The older I get, the more I like white Bordeaux. It’s such an interesting expression of Sauvignon Blanc (often bolstered with a bit of Semillon, of course), usually barrel fermented. My experience is that barrel-fermented Sauvignon ages really well, and – as long as the oak isn’t overpowering – it drinks well young, too. So it’s […]

Two summery sweet wines worth checking out

Sometimes you just want something fun and summery to drink. Here are a couple of really fun, sweet, fizzy wines with real points of interest.

Innocent Bystander Moscato 2013 Victoria, Australia
5.5% alcohol. From a really attractive crown-capped 37.5 cl bottle, this just works. It’s pink and sweet and fizzy, with grape and cherry fruit. Simple, fresh […]

Ojuel Supurao, a remarkable, traditional, sweet red Rioja


This is something quite unique. It’s a sweet red wine from Rioja, made by Ojuel, a small winery whose focus is on making an old-style sweet wine from dried grapes which has all but disappeared from the region.

In the past, before the industrialization of winemaking in the region, people would typically roam the vineyard […]

At the cricket, with a spot of Champagne tasting on the way

Went to Trent Bridge today with some buddies to watch day 2 of the first Ashes test. For those unfamiliar with cricket, the Ashes is the hotly contested series between England and Australia. And these games can last up to five days each.

It was quite a drive – we set off at 7 am from […]

M&S Single Variety Hopped Ales

The interest in hops continues. Marks & Spencer (UK supermarket) have released a range of single variety hopped ales. Here are my notes on them.

M&S Single Variety Hopped Ale Citra IPA
Made by Oakham Ales, Cambridgeshire. 4.9% alcohol. Very fruity with lively notes of citrus and passionfruit. Lively, fruity palate is fresh and crisp with some […]