Some more pictures from Tokaj

Just back from my lightning trip to Tokaj. I enjoyed it a great deal, and learned a lot. I thought I knew a little about Tokaji (the wine), but visiting and seeing the grapes as they are ready for harvesting, tasting the wines, and seeing how they are put together exposed just how little I [...]

On the road in Tokaj, Hungary

It fills me with a sense of childish excitement when I visit a new wine region. I’ve said it before, and likely I will say it again, that it is when you visit a region that the penny drops: all the book learning and knowledge of the wines falls into place, and you begin to [...]

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 [...]

In Israel

Uri Hetz, Naama Sorkin and Gaby Sadan

Until yesterday, my experience of Israel’s wines was pretty limited. But yesterday I spent a day in northern Israel’s wine country, visiting producers and learning a lot.

This was followed by a dinner in Akko, at Uri Buri restaurant, with some winemakers. It was a remarkable day.

Today I pay [...]

A day in the Languedoc

I spent today in the Languedoc, doing some work. The work was actually quite enjoyable: I was tasting a selection of 90 of the estate wines from Les Grands Chais de France, with a view to selecting 12 ‘ambassadors’ – wines that Grands Chais could use to show to the press and trade what they [...]

In South Africa, day 1 Graham Beck and Delaire Graff

I land at 8 am and I’m met at the airport by Nicolette Waterford, South African wine PR star, who has arranged for me to visit two of her clients. Nicolette’s husband Darryl owns a helicopter charter form, so we are travelling in style, along with Graham Beck winemaker Erika Obermeyer.

After an amazing flight over [...]

In South Africa

I’m in South Africa. More later. For now, a few pictures!

New Zealand, day 3, in Nelson with Neudorf

Judy and Tim Finn, Nelson pioneers, who established Neudorf in 1978

I worked out that since November 2008, my first visit to New Zealand, I have visited five times in five years. That’s a significant accrual of air miles. But over the course of these visits, I’d never visited Nelson, so as I picked up [...]

In New Zealand, day 1, Central Otago

It was hard to get my head round the contrast. One day I’m shivering in a snowy, dark-skied London. The next, I’m sitting on an internal flight crossing the dividing range in New Zealand’s South Island, looking down at dramatic snow-capped peaks in laser-sharp light on my way to Queenstown, Central Otago.

I very nearly missed [...]