Video interviews with top South African winemakers

Just posted a write up of the excellent wines from Mick and Jeanine Craven, who make superb single-site wines from Stellenbosch. While I was doing it I thought I’d share some of my video interviews with various South African wine stars, beginning with Mick and Jeanine:

 

 

 

 

 

Two lovely naturally made reds from Portuguese winemaker Tiago Teles

A while back, Ben Henshaw of Indigo Wine sent me some samples to have a look at. Ben and I agree pretty much in terms of our palate preferences, I’ve found, and so it’s always good to taste things that he’s unearthed. He seems to have an amazing talent for finding great producers, and sometimes […]

At a festival, without very much wine

A week ago, my friend Mel Brown messaged me to see if I wanted to go to a festival the following weekend. I was free, so I said yes. I had no idea what to expect. The festival in question was Noisily, held in the woods in Leicestershire. It’s all electronic dance music.

Rufus and […]

Champagne Taittinger Prestige Rosé NV

Champagne Taittinger Prestige Rosé NV France
£50 Waitrose, Asda, Wine Rack, Majestic, Harrods
12.5% alcohol
There’s 15% of still red wine from Ambonnay and Bouzy in the blend, added to white Champagne base wine with at least 30% Chardonnay in it. So, unsurprisingly, this is deep pink in colour. How does it taste? Lovely bright red cherry and […]

Three Muscadets, and how I am beginning to love Melon

Isn’t Melon an interesting grape variety? I’ve had good examples from Canada (Niagara) and Oregon of late. I’m glad people are working with a variety like this, which traditionally hasn’t been taken seriously.

These were three Muscadets that I opened last night. I think I’ll be exploring this region and grape variety further.

Champteloup Muscadet Sèvre-et-Maine Sur […]

Lisbon Family Vineyards: visiting three ambitious producers from Portugal's Lisboa region

The wine region of Lisboa is a large, diverse one. It runs up north from Lisbon, bounded by the Atlantic coast on one side and the Tejo river to the east. Until 2009, this region was known as Estremadura.

Quinta de Sant’Ana

It’s a region with a slightly downmarket image, because of its past emphasis on […]

Video: bottling sparkling wine on a mobile disgorging line

 

 

When I was in Canada last month I had a chance to watch Viniserve’s mobile disgorging line in operation. Disgorging is a vital stage in the life of a sparkling wine. It’s the point when the dead yeast cells (from the secondary fermentation that creates the bubbles) are expelled. A process called riddling has localised […]

Some BA lounge wines: what does business class get you these days?

Just did a bit of British Airways lounge wine sampling (BA Galleries lounge at terminal 3). These are wines available in business class. How good are they? The answer: not bad, but not very exciting. Unfortunately, like many airlines, I suspect BA have very little budget to spend on wine, and this selection shows it. […]

On divorce

[Aside: I have been running an internal debate about whether to write on this subject. It’s not like I’m the first person to get divorced: it happens all the time. So why should my words be of any interest? Also, is my personal life relevant to my professional life? I think it is. In writing […]

Gamay 31, Easthope Family Winegrowers 2015 Hawke's Bay

There’s not a lot of Gamay in New Zealand, but it seems to have some promise here. The most well known example is the soild Te Mata Gamay, but there are two excellent examples from Central Otago, too (Mount Edward and Rippon). This is the latest one I’ve come across, made by Rod Easthope (formerly […]