RAW and the London Wine Fair

I am almost overwhelmed. Since Thursday, I have been tasting almost continually. And two events in particular – the RAW fair on Sunday (above) and Monday, and the London Wine Fair on Monday through to today (below) – have been particularly intensive.

There is just so much wine in the world. That’s clearly a good thing. […]


This is super cool. O-Port-Unidade is a charity Port, organized by Axel Probst, German fighter pilot and Port lover (his website is World of Port). 24 Port producers (with one famous absentee, I guessed correctly who this was) joined in, donating old vine grapes (average age 35 years) to the project from the 2013 vintage. […]

Lunch with Dirk Niepoort, including the Poeirinho Baga and a Madeira from 1795

Dirk Niepoort is in town, so yesterday we arranged to have lunch at Kitchen W8. It’s been a while since I caught up with Mr Niepoort, who is one of my top wine heroes. He brought along his new Bairrada wine, Poeirinho, and also a small bottle containing a mystery wine: it turned out to […]

Some Canadian wines you should probably try (part 2)

Some more Canadian highlights. They might be tough to locate, but they are worth the chase.

Bachelder Wismer Vineyard Chardonnay 2012 Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara, Canada
Thomas Bachelder is one of Canada’s winemaking heroes. This Chardonnay has a wonderful matschstick/mineral and spice edge to the nutty nose. Very fine and expressive palate with pear, peach, spice and […]

Some Canadian wines you should probably try (part 1)

Norm Hardie

Thursday’s Canadian wine tasting and seminar at Canada House was a great success. Lots of energy and enthusiasm, great people, and some lovely wines. Here are some of my favourites, that you should try if you get a chance.

Norman Hardie Chardonnay Cuvee L 2012 Ontario, Canada
This is a blend of Prince Edward County […]

A day in the English vineyards

Spent the day today driving round English vineyards with two Canadian wine peeps, Andrew and Nicole. We visited three of the finest English producers, and each visit was quite special in its own way. Full write ups to come (of course), but for now some quick notes and a few pictures.

First visit was Nyetimber. Probably […]

Lunch at Grain Store

Lovely lunch at my current favourite restaurant, Grain Store, today. The redevelopment at Kings Cross along the Regent’s Canal – where Grain Store is located – is looking good, and it was stunning in the May sunshine. Between two, we had three small plates and one large one, and came away well fed. On the […]

Limited success: the enemy of real success

My view is that limited success is the enemy of real success. Many wineries are selling enough wine that they just keep going with their current strategies, even though these are not optimal, and are actually limiting their future success.

The problem is that when things are sort of working, people are reluctant to make the […]

Craggy Range Avery Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2014

Very impressed by this. It’s the Craggy Range Avery Vineyard Sauvignon, and it’s a very stylish, refined expression of the Marlborough style. It’s from a mature (22 year old) vineyard planted on stony soils between Blenheim and Renwick (in the Rapaura subregion), and it’s a relatively warm site.

Craggy Range Avery Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2014 Marlborough, […]

English wine, the latest statistics

Released today, some interesting stats on English wine. It’s a success story, for sure.

In 2014, production was the equivalent of 6.3 million 75 cl bottles, which is a 42% increase in volume over 2013 (which itself was a record breaking year). This is a reflection of a good growing season with the added impact of […]