No monsters please

Australian wine makers often say, “I make my wine with ripe fruit”. The insinuation is that European wine makers don’t use ripe grapes and so make weedy wines. I call this ‘crap’ and it gets me very irritated because: Some of the best wines are made with perfectly ripe grapes yet are low alcohol and […]

A lovely old softy

I got this on release from Berry’s, what a bargain it was. It doesn’t suffer from 1996 syndrome. Vosne-Romanée Les Brulees 1996, Rene Engel en magnum A lovely, soft nose of mature fruit. It is very complex and harmonious. There is a good Vosne character to it, it is aristocratic and exotic. The palate is […]

Still quaquaversal

This is from one of the more expensive producers of Burgundy. I have a bit of a soft-spot for their wines, but I can rarely afford them. This was nigh-on thirty pounds; pretty steep for a village wine. Vosne-Romanée 1999, Domaine Méo-Camuzet Initially the nose was a bit reduced and backward, but with vigorous swirling […]

A complete bargain

I’m around at the neighbours place and a bottle of has been cracked. This is really excellent Riesling: fresh, lively, balanced, complex, really lovely stuff. At fifteen quid a bottle from the Wine Soc it is a bargain. It’ll age for ten or so years as well, if you have the facilities.

Last night’s general drinking #6

A more sedate dinner party last night. Chablis Premier Cru le Forest 2004, R & V Dauvissat This had good weight and roundness. It was quite acidic, but the balance was superb. Nice minerality and I think the creamy old oak character was very satisfying. Gewurztraminer Grand Cru Hengst 2002, Domaine Zind-Humbrecht Very ripe and […]


Last night’s general drinking #5

Last night we had a dinner party. Quite a bit of wine was got through. Riesling Spätlese Oberhäuser Brücke 2004, Helmut Dönnhoff Lovely fruit, quite round and ripe for a 2004. Good balancing acidity made this a very nice drink. Chardonnay Champagne 1996, Pol Roger A charming nose of bread and ripe apples. It seemed […]

An easy meal

I have a dinner party organised for tonight and as I am feeling quite rotten it will be a simple meal; chicken in cider. For four people you will need: 4 chicken breasts 4 chicken thighs 1kg decent mushrooms sliced 3 large onions 750g streaky bacon cut into 2cm lengths Fresh chicken stock 2 dessert […]

A more refined weird wine

I’ve had a bit of Eric Morgat Savennieres recently, I quite liked them. However, I think this is a bit better. Savennieres Clos du Papillon 2000, Domaine des Baumards Deep yellow colour, not the orange of Morgat. It is very soily and mineral, with the merest hint of elder flower fruit and wet wool. There […]

A drink from the 80s

I mixed myself several Harvey Wallbangers at the party last night. This is a drink that reminds me very much of the eighties. The original recipe calls for Galliano and normal vodka, but Galliano is a bit sweet. You can make a drier version like this: 4 shots freshly squeezed orange juice 2 shots vanilla […]

Hooray for Oxford!

Every year since 1953 Oxford and Cambridge universities have competed in a blind wine tasting competition. I was in the Oxford University team about a decade ago. We never lost. In this year’s competition I am very pleased to report that Oxford has won again. I say ‘again’ because Cambridge have only won nineteen times […]