Lunch with Dirk Niepoort at Trinity, Clapham

Last week we had a wonderful lunch at Trinity Restaurant in Clapham Old Town, with Dirk Niepoort and his wines. Trinity is a great place, and Adam Byatt had prepared a lovely informal sharing menu based on pyrenees kid goat cooked on charcoal. This is the sort of food I love. There was roast goat [...]

A brilliant meal at Toinou, a seafood restaurant in Aix

Our last night in Provence we were staying in Aix. Where should we eat? We asked a few of the winemakers we’d visited, and the votes stacked up for this place: Toinou. It’s a fishmonger’s with a restaurant – always a good combination. We rocked up as walk-ins and they had one table left. Feeling [...]

Tapas crawling in Logroño, Rioja

I’m in Rioja, on a short trip with Vintae, a dynamic wine company looking to make authentic wines across several Spanish wine regions. They’re working with organics, marginal vineyards, forgotten vineyards and have a particular focus on Grenache. We’re staying in Logroño, so on the first night it was pretty much obligatory to go tapas [...]

O Gaveto, Porto, a brilliant seafood restaurant

I had one of my meals of the year at O Gaveto in Porto, a couple of weeks ago.

It’s a traditional Portuguese seafood restaurant in Matosinhos, the port area of Porto. It’s run by brothers João and Jose Silva, and the restaurant was started by their father.

The food is superb, and the service fabulous. The [...]

An evening in Adelaide: Mothervine, Osteria Oggi and The Exeter

Had a lovely evening in Adelaide on Wednesday. We began at Mothervine, which is a really good wine bar. There’s just such a good list here, which spans Australian and European, with a nice mix of conventional and more natural. First up, a lovely 2014 Kabinett from Prum, which was so taut and fine, and [...]

In Seattle: Le Pichet and Bar Melusine

There are few compelling reasons to be rich. But one of them is so that you have enough budget to eat out all the time. While I was in Seattle for the Riesling Rendezvous conference, I ate at two rather different places. I recommend them both.

The first was Le Pichet. It’s a small French cafe [...]

Three days in Portland, Oregon

 

Powell’s, Portland’s world famous bookshop

Portland is one of the USA’s most vibrant cities. It’s known for its food and drink scene, and for being a hub for artistic, creative and alternative types. And I’ve only ever spent a few hours there. So on this trip, I decided to take some time to look around, [...]

Sager & Wilde Wine Bar

Popped into Sager & Wilde Wine Bar today for the first time in a while. It’s a lovely space, and what a wine list! The by-the-glass list is  shortish but it’s really good, and changes frequently, but it’s the lengthier by the bottle list that really grabbed my attention. This is a superbly chosen (I [...]

Lunch at Terroirs, with the fab Belluard Gringet from Savoie

Had lunch at Terroirs wine bar today with a friend. I haven’t been here for a while, but we were in the neighbourhood, it was just past noon, and the opportunity presented itself. We did a walk-in, sat at the bar and ordered oysters and a lovely fresh, natural Muscadet (Amphibolite).

It was a magical combination. [...]

In Champagne, Day 1: visiting Vergnon and dinner at Bocal

This Champagne trip started gently, with a weekend in Reims that contained just one vineyard visit: JL Vergnon, in Le Mesnil. We were hosted by Christophe Constant (below), who has been running things here for 15 years now. Vergnon have 5.5 hectares in the Côtes des Blancs, with 18 parcels in Grand Crus and 2 [...]