‘Gourmet dinner Saturday night?’ enquired brother-in-law Beavington by text. ‘I have something VERY special.’ So, on Saturday night we headed over to my sister’s place for dinner.
The special item was a magnum of 1993 Margaux, which he’d purchased in the late-1990s from Justerini for £50 in a bin-end sale. 1993 is a vintage that has [...]
Warwick Ross, filmmaker, and Simon Staples
Red Obsession is a compelling film. It tells the story of the rise in interest in the top wines of Bordeaux, and how China has fallen in love with wine. With the 2009 and 2010 vintages, prices reached unprecedented levels. The Chinese market has embraced these wines and is now the [...]
A nice-looking gravelly terroir
I’ve spent a few days in Bordeaux, during which I’ve had a chance to speak to a few knowledgeable people and also to walk through quite a few vineyards. (And run through some, too.) Harvest is a few weeks off, so it’s interesting to see the marked differences among the various [...]
I am exhilarated. Yesterday I ran – and completed – the Marathon du Medoc.
To run any marathon for the first time would rank as a great life experience, but the fact that this was the Medoc Marathon, with a 42.195 km route taking runners through some of the world’s most famous vineyards, made this extra [...]
Jose Sanfins, Chantelune
Holidays are over, and the wine tasting calendar starts again here in London. I was in town for the first tasting in a long time – a small portfolio tasting from The Perfect Cellar, a new-ish merchant with an eclectic list of small producers, and a shop presence in luxury retail space [...]
Mareli Botha and Bertus Basson
Had a remarkable lunch yesterday. It was hosted by Keith Prothero with guest of honour Bertus Basson, star South African restaurateur (Overture at Hidden Valley). It was held at Chez Bruce, and the combination of food, wine and company was just about perfect.
Champagne Philipponnat Clos des Goisses 1996 France
Intense yet [...]
Occasionally it is good to have a treat. So on Sunday, brother-in-law Beavington and I hatched a plan. He was sans famille, with my father staying. So why not invite me over for lunch? My father isn’t drinking at the moment, and without the usual hordes it was safe to bring some good stuff out [...]
The older I get, the more I like white Bordeaux. It’s such an interesting expression of Sauvignon Blanc (often bolstered with a bit of Semillon, of course), usually barrel fermented. My experience is that barrel-fermented Sauvignon ages really well, and – as long as the oak isn’t overpowering – it drinks well young, too. So it’s [...]
Just on my way home from Bordeaux, and a quick one-night stay for Vinexpo, the huge bi-annual wine trade fair.
These Castel girls were unloading a palette of gift bags every few hours, which – inexplicably – punters seemed keen to snaffle. But what was in them worth snaffling?
The scale of Vinexpo, with it’s multitiered [...]
I’d just come back from a long run, and was tucking into some lunch. Fiona suggested setting me a blind tasting challenge. This is dangerous.
In the blind tasting challenge, she picks a wine at random from my racks (I have about 400 bottles in the home, ranging from fairly serious to cheap samples) and serves [...]