Our scientific knowledge about what makes wine ageworthy is currently limited.
I know the rules: the things that should make wines capable of ageing. There’s low pH (high acidity), the presence of adequate free sulfur dioxide, and the presence of phenolic compounds.
Increasingly, though, I come across wines that break these rules, and yet age well.
I don’t [...]
Now this is terribly geeky: I know. But when I visited Quinta dos Malvedos last September I was delighted to see a wild vine growing in a tree.
This is really interesting to me, because this is the native habitat for the grape vine. Originally, all vines would have been woodland climbers. They are adapted for [...]
In short, no.
I have just written up Tuesday’s presentation and tasting on the results from research carried out by Bordeaux first growth Chateau Margaux. This was presented by Paul Pontallier, and he displayed an incredibly open and thoughtful attitude in sharing details of the in-house experiments that have been going on there for a decade.
Had another corked wine. I say ‘another’, but actually, it’s the first in ages. I wonder whether it’s getting rarer? Or maybe, it’s because many wines I drink are sealed with alternative closures or treated technical corks such as Diam?
Once again, this corked wine has some large, deep lenticels on the wine-facing end. I’ve wondered [...]
The Brancott Estate earlier today
The title of this blog post – ‘wines from here will be come world famous’ – were the prophetic words uttered by Montana’s Frank Yukich as he put the first vines of the modern era into the ground in Marlborough.
There’s a monument to his achievement at the Brancott Estate. Yukich [...]
Prompted by the discussion that followed my recent post on the taste of terroir, here are a few more thoughts on the subject.
1. Not all sites are created equal
I recently read an article on terroir by Claude and Lydia Bourguignon. They made lots of points, some of them good, some plain patronising and chauvinistic. [...]
Just posted an illustrated guide to how cork is made, on the main wineanorak site - here. It’s a very attractive substance. Such a shame about the existence of cork taint, and also the fact that cork isn’t totally consistent. But when it’s good, it can help wines age magnificently.
In neck closures – natural cork, technical [...]
Here’s a film where I ramble on interminably about terroir. Well, actually, it’s my seven key points on this most wonderful of concepts in wine. I hope that you find it useful and entertaining.
Much has been written about a scientific ‘study’ by psychologist Richard Wiseman which showed that people can’t tell the difference between cheap and expensive wine. (See, for example, this report this report in The Guardian and this report in the Telegaph.)
But, in this world of soundbyte news reporting, it’s just the headline message that is [...]
I have just published an extended write-up of a visit to one of New Zealand’s most exciting producers: Dry River, Martinborough. Here, I want to focus on one aspect of what they do – their viticulture, which is remarkable.
The vineyards are immaculate. A split canopy system called Scott Henry is employed, with both upward and [...]