At the cricket, with a spot of Champagne tasting on the way

Went to Trent Bridge today with some buddies to watch day 2 of the first Ashes test. For those unfamiliar with cricket, the Ashes is the hotly contested series between England and Australia. And these games can last up to five days each.

It was quite a drive – we set off at 7 am from [...]

Champagne Thienot Cuvee Stanislas 2005

Champagne rocks. It’s annoying that it costs so much, sometimes, but the older I get the more I like it. Here’s a good one. Actually, more than just a good one: a really serious Champagne from Thiénot.

Champagne Thiénot Cuvee Stanislas Blanc de Blancs 2005
Full yellow colour. Elegant citrus and white peach nose with subtle toastiness. [...]

Video: a conversation with Richard Geoffroy of Dom Perignon, with the 2004 and 2003 rose

Yesterday afternoon I met with Richard Geoffroy, of Champagne Dom Perignon, to chat and taste the 2004 Dom Perignon and the not yet released 2003 Dom Perignon Rose. Richard was in the UK to go to the British Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone, where he was doing a DP event with the likes of [...]

Champagne Bruno Paillard Blanc de Blancs 2002

Enjoyed this, a rich style of Champagne from Bruno Paillard. This was released later than most of its peers, after spending 10 years on the lees, and has a relatively low dosage of 5 g/litre. The label this year was designed by French artist Jean Paul Agosti, and it sort of captures the flavour of the [...]

The Fourth Grand Blind New Year Champagne Tasting

So here it is. Longer and better than ever! 11 wines in the mix: 9 Champagnes (one a £10 bottle), 2 English sparkling wines, all tasted blind on camera. Can Beavington and I spot the cheapie? Can we spot the English wines? Which is our favourite? 53 minutes of viewing pleasure.


Some festive fizz, and fun quotes

It’s always a good time for sparkling wine and Champagne. Christmas gives me that extra prompt to open bottles though, and to seek out the company of those who also like to bring out the bubbles. Here are some fizz highlights of the last few days.

First, a couple of Christmas day quotes. I was at [...]

Champagne Egly-Ouriet Brut Tradition Grand Cru

I have a soft spot for Egly-Ouriet – they used to be the favoured grower Champagne of La Vigneronne, the now defunct South Kensington wine shop that I used to visit a lot when I was starting out.

The house style is lower yields than normal, fermentation in oak, and a low-ish dosage of 5-6 g/litre. [...]

The Krug Institute of Happiness

Remarkable dinner last night at the Krug Institute of Happiness. It’s a pop-up restaurant idea based around Krug Champagne, with cooking by Nuno Mendes of Viajante (pictured above), and held in a stunning property in Highgate, 85 Swains Lane.

Olivier Krug


After lots of Krug Grande Cuvee and canapes, it was time to sit down. We [...]

Pug puppies and two good Champagnes

Nipped over to my sister Hester’s last night to see their new pug puppies. They already have an adult pug, and these new recruits take the pug quotient in the Beavington household to 3. And twin sister Anne has taken another pug from the litter.

They are incredibly cute, although labradoodles still rock more than pugs [...]

Moet Grand Vintage 2004

Liked this. Moet make a lot of Champagne, and when you review the wines from a big producer, there are two dangers. The first is to be prejudiced against them because they are big. The second is to be too soft on them: you would like the big players to be doing good work because it’s [...]