A really nice Loire Pinot: Eric Louis Sancerre Rouge 2013

I’ve never really been all that interested in Sancerre Rouge before. But when you look at the terroirs, and then consider that it wasn’t all that long ago that this used to be a predominantly red wine appellation, you begin to think that there’s potential for some good Pinot Noir here. This is a lovely [...]

Clos de Tart: a vertical tasting of one of Burgundy's most celebrated wines


Clos de Tart needs little introduction for most wine lovers. It’s Burgundy’s largest Grand Cru monopole (where the whole vineyard is owned by one producer) and for the last 20 years it has been under the safe stewardship of the fabulous map-making Sylvain Pitiot (above right). Now Sylvain has retired and handed over to Jacques [...]

A new high end Pinot Noir from Torres, Chile: Escaleras de Empedrado

This is quite exciting. It’s a new high-end Pinot Noir from Chile, made by Torres. And it has been a long time coming. 20 years ago, Torres went prospecting for a special Chilean terroir with slate, to replicate the soils of Priorat. They found a site called Empedrado, which was a forested slope with slate [...]

Two Burgundies I liked: Jobard and Bichot

Gotta love Burgundy. Here are two rather nice ones that aren’t stupidly expensive, but which are delicious.

Antoine Jobard Bourgogne Blanc 2011 Burgundy, France
Wonderful stuff: lovely matchstick and citrus nose leads to a palate showing mineral, tangy citrus fruit with hints of cabbage and tangerine. It’s zippy and complex with an amazing vitality. Complex and precise [...]

The new Las Pizarras wines from Errazuriz: high end, terroir-driven Pinot and Chardonnay from coastal Aconcagua

Francisco Baettig, of Errazuriz, is a thoughtful, insightful winemaker. Like many Chilean winemakers, he has been thinking quite a bit about how to make his wines fresher and more interesting, and these two new wines are the latest stage in this journey.

His boss, Eduardo Chadwick wanted him to produce two new icon wines, but Francisco [...]

Bell Hill, one of New Zealand's finest producers

I just love the wines of Bell Hill, a boutique winery in Waikari, North Canterbury, New Zealand (not far from the Waipara Valley). I visited seven years ago on my first trip to New Zealand, and was blown away by the wines and the vineyard. So I was really pleased to catch up with owners Marcel [...]

Thörle Spätbrugunder 2013 Rheinhessen, Germany

I’m a big Pinot Noir fan. I just love it when it is good, and increasingly it’s becoming much easier to find decent Pinot from around the world, and not just in Burgundy. German Pinot Noir? Well, there’s a lot of it, and there are some really good ones, but there’s also quite a lot [...]

Two lovely volcanic wines from the Cotes d'Auvergne

Cave St Verny make some lovely wines, from the Côtes d’Auvergne, a really interesting but obscure wine region pretty much in the middle of France, which is counted as part of the Loire. It’s based around a volcano,  Puy de Dôme, at the edge of the Massif Central, which makes for some interesting terroirs. The [...]

Vinteloper Odeon Pinot Noir 2012 Adelaide Hills

Dave Bowley, the Vinteloper, came round to dinner. And he bought this: one of the best Australian Pinot Noirs that I have tasted. It’s from a single Vineyard in Lenswood, Adelaide Hills that was planted in 1986. The slope faces east; the clone is  D5V12; the elevation is 550m.

Winemaking: pigeage by hand & foot, wild [...]

The 2013 Craggy Range Prestige wines: Le Sol, Sophia and Aroha

These are three remarkable wines. Craggy Range are very excited about the 2013 vintage in these two regions, and on tasting these wines it’s easy to show why. ‘In 2013 we felt it was the first time we had really seen the true potential of our great estates in Hawke’s Bay and Martinborough,’ says winemaker [...]