Piedmont at the end of January you would think would be a pretty sleepy place, but in fact Alba was buzzing with activity, as it was the host for the Anteprima Nebbiolo tasting for journalists, and the Grandi Langhe tasting for trade and importers.
2015 Brunello di Montalcino - A Tuscan Triumph As each week passes, it’s hard to avoid the hype and noise around 2015 Brunello. There have been some really good vintages in the last few years like 2007 and 2010, but there is a strong feeling that 2015 trumps them all – and from our early tastings it is easy to understand the excitement.
It’s the busiest moment of the year for our team as we try to help everyone get the right wines into their glasses as well as the perfect presents into people's stockings for Christmas.
Those who have visited Piedmont will understand just how varied these beautiful Alpine foothills are in aspect, altitude and geology. The best winemakers are able to translate the nuance of these sites, or 'crus', into delicious and distinctive expressions of Nebbiolo. Andrea Sottimano is an absolute master of the art.
Every March the new releases from Montalcino are unveiled. The rules stipulate that Brunello must be aged at the estate for 5 years and for the Riservas it is 7 years before hitting the market. 2019 therefore marks the release of the 2014 Brunellos and the Riservas from 2013.
'The recent Lea & Sandeman Italian tasting was a voyage of discovery,' said Susy Atkins in last week's Telegraph. We are thrilled that our tasting has drawn so much positive feedback, from journalists and customers alike. Italian wine is definitely alla moda and it's easy to see why.
Last week we hosted our 4th annual pure Italian Tasting which has become one of the highlights of our year. A showcase of our incredible Italian selection which grows every year, presented by the wonderful people who make the wines.
We have just spent a week careering around the Tuscan countryside like crazed cinghiale, sniffing out truffle and guzzling Chianti Classico. Everywhere we went, friendly black roosters tempted us in like slightly tipsy Sirens. The problem is, all roosters are not created equal. That's unsurprising given that Chianti Classico's rippling landscape covers nearly 72,000 hectares.
Whilst on holiday in Northern Italy this August, I had the pleasure of visiting our Franciacorta producer, Corteaura. We were treated to a in-depth guided tour by Federico, the estate owner, who explained how he had jumped ship from the accounting world to immerse himself in the world of sparkling wine.
2018 Lea & Sandeman Italian Tasting This year we are holding our Italian tasting in the upper room at Foyles Bookshop. This is a great opportunity to explore our award-winning Italian range, meet our producers and taste some brilliant new releases - including the latest Brunello vintages from Fuligni, Collematoni & Giodo.