Neil Ellis Op Sy Moer 2016, a distinctive white bottled with fine lees

Warren Ellis, son of Neil, showed me this wine on a recent trip to South Africa. It’s a blend of Palomino from Piekeneerskloof (450 m, Table Mountain sandstone soils), with a touch of Chenin Blanc and Grenache Blanc. All old vines. The interesting thing about this wine is the lees contact: it’s even bottled with [...]

Two orange wines from Spain

Last night I drank two orange wines from Spain. Both different in style, but both very good. The first, a distinctive Albillo, was on the list at the brill Morito. The second was a Macabeu in a distinctive ceramic bottle, which was purchased at Furanxo, a lovely Spanish deli and bar in Dalston.

Alfredo Maestro Lovamor Albillo [...]

Gamay Focus 30, Hervé Souhaut La Souteronne

I had this wine twice in two nights at Scotch Bar, Blenheim. It’s from Hervé Souhaut’s Domaine Romaneaux-Destezet, which is based in Arlebosc in the Ardèche, just west of Tain l’Hermitage. Indeed, as well as his Ardèche holdings, Hervé has some vines in the northern Rhône, with a total of 5 hectares altogether. He started out [...]

Loire adventure: visiting the remarkable François Saint-Lô

François Saint-Lô

The rain was easing as we arrived for an appointment with François Saint-Lô, but it was still a cold, damp day. Not ideal for tasting wine. There’s nothing fancy about his place, but it has a good feel about it. It’s a gem of a project: it seems like a wine-making commune, with [...]

Alice Feiring on Natural Wine at Must 2017, Cascais, Portugal

I’m in Estoril (next to Cascais, on the coast, near Lisbon), Portugal, for the inaugural MUST fermenting ideas wine summit. Things kicked off yesterday with a talk by Alice Feiring, on Natural Wine. It was a good place to start.

‘I’m much more comfortable in front of a computer than an audience,’ began Alice, as she [...]

Wine bar crawling: Sager & Wilde, The Laughing Heart, Brilliant Corners

Michael Sager

There is so much fun to be had in London these days. It has become a great wine city. On Friday night I joined up with PR person and emerging wine writer Christina Rasmussen. We did a tour of three of east London’s wine bars, two of which were new to me. I’m [...]

Loire adventure: Clos du Tue Boeuf with Jean-Marie Puzelat

Jean-Marie Puzelat

This was quite a visit at Clos du Tue Boeuf. I’ve met Thierry Puzelat before, and I’ve tasted these wines a bit. They are brought into the UK by Les Caves de Pyrene, and I’ve always loved them. Here was a chance to visit. Thierry was travelling, so we met with Jean-Marie, older [...]

Loire adventure: preparing in Paris

Day two of the Loire adventure saw us get ready to head to the Loire by spending a day in Paris. Nicole, Lexi, Krysta and I caught the Eurostar and two hours and some sparkling wine later, we were in Paris. We then took the metro to our Airbnb in the 11th. It was an [...]

Video: Alternative America - three producers from the USA doing something a bit differently

 

At the Real Wine Fair I caught up with three producers from the USA who are doing something a bit different, and making excellent wines in the process.

Scott Frank is an Oregon producer with a winery in downtown Portland called Bow & Arrow. He’s fallen for the Loire, and makes a compelling Melon (the grape [...]

The Real Wine Fair, some thoughts

Yesterday was the first of two days of the Real Wine Fair, which was held at Tobacco Dock in East London. This is a great venue, with wonderful natural light and a good atmosphere.

The Real Wine Fair is one of the two significant natural wine fairs held each in London year, along with RAW. Both [...]