A cheapie but a goodie

I’ve recommended this in the past, it is a real bargain. Quality dry Riesling for around an Ayrton (Ayrton Senna, tenner). Mesh Eden Valley Riesling 2005, Grosset/Hill Smith It has a pure nose of lime fruit. It even displays a degree of minerality: jolly good! Not overly heavy or over-ripe. The palate is linear and […]

Our next holiday

At the beginning of October we are travelling to the Basque country. We have been there before and it is one of the best places for eating in the world. Whilst there are the glories of many-starred restaurants there, I have to admit the place I am most looking forward to going is rather more […]

Big but good

I was first introduced to Savennières on a trip to the Loire. We visited Pierre Soulez first and I was instantly sold on his wines. They are very concentrated and dense, but very well balanced and interesting. The Cuvée d’Avant means that it has been harvested late and fermented in oak. Oak is not commonly […]

Just too much like hard work

I have many memories of drinking this wine is the past; I’ve even had some old bottles that I have thought are quite good. It has always been a large-scale wine, but this vintage is just too heroic. Cabernet Sauvignon 2000, Cape Mentelle A very hot, ripe, alcoholic nose (it is 15%) with stewed, jammy […]

Best so far

Fourteen quid well spent on this. It has some real character. Local Growers Semillon 2002, Rockford There is a honeyed, waxy character to the nose. It also has good lemony fruit. This smells quite characterful. The palate is finely balanced with some Semillon weight and a good backbone of acidity. This is pretty good for […]

Stunningly dull general drinking

The two Australian wines I had planned to have with dinner bored the tits off me. Chardonnay 2003, Cullen Soft melon fruit on the nose, some wood too. It smells quite dull; I’ve had so many similar wines in the past. The palate has fruit, acidity and oak, but is frighteningly boring. I am not […]

Not much insecticide

I first tried this at the London wine and spirit trade fair. I thought it seemed a nice enough drink. It is an adequate, but slightly dull, aperitif. Riesling 2004, Plantagenet This has but hints of fly-spray on the nose, a common problem, I find, with Australian Riesling. It is obviously ripe, but has some […]

First of a set

I used to travel from Oxford to London just to buy Rockford’s Basket Press Shiraz. If only I hadn’t wasted my time and money ageing them. This wine is a bit more junior in Rockford’s range than the Shiraz. It is 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Shiraz. Barossa Valley Rod and Spur 2002, Rockford Wines A […]

In the dim and distant past…

When I first got into wine as an enthusiastic youth I used to have a bit of a thing for Australian wines. I would hate to classify all Australian wines as ‘beginner’s wines’ but at the prices I could afford they tended to be well made and fun. As I grew older and my budget […]

One year of drinking

It suddenly occurs to me that I’ve been keeping this blog for a year. I’ve had some great wines during this time and pleasingly few nasty ones. Long may this trend continue!