Our plans to taste the latest releases from Chateau Margaux face to face (at a safe distance!) with the team from the Chateau were thwarted last week by complications with travel for the Bordeaux contingent. We had been heading into London to the Mentzelopoulos family's Marylebone outpost - Clarette (the wine bar owned by Alexandra Petit Mentzelopoulos).
There have been a fair number of ‘ifs’ about the 2019 Bordeaux En Primeur. The first and perhaps biggest was the ‘if it would happen’. With most of the world in various states of lockdown, Primeur week cancelled and critics unable to taste, the situation in April looked pretty bleak.
Wednesday was quite a day as we headed to the Rothschild family’s English home, Waddesdon Manor, for an impressive Rothschild double header – the 5 wines from the Lafite Rothschilds and 5 wines from the Mouton Rothschilds. It was a strange feeling – very reminiscent of our usual primeur pilgrimage to the great Châeaux of Bordeaux.
Château Latour 2012 is released today – for the first time, as this was the first vintage in which Latour was not offered en primeur.
I am still reeling from the news of the death last week of Denis Durantou, owner and winemaker of Chateau l'Église Clinet, La Petite Église (its second wine) Cruzelles, Montlandrie, La Chenade and Saintayme. He was only 62. I've been so disengaged (delegation) from the last two Bordeaux primeur campaigns, that I didn't even know he was ill.
Is there anything that beats a good Dinner Party? Coming together to share delicious food, exciting wines, and lively conversation with friends now seems more essential than ever before – but how to have that experience now? In recent weeks, technology has really stepped up to the plate, changing the way we work, play, and socialise.
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.
Every January the small village of Ampuis in the Northern Rhone plays host to the annual Marché aux vins, a salon that attracts a global audience of Syrah and Viognier enthusiasts, collectors and buyers.
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.
2018 was a very hot vintage – the growing season only beaten by 2003 for overall heat. However the wines are very different from 2003, for even where they are ripe there is much more freshness than one could have dreamed possible.
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.