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Mad for Madeira

My visit to Madeira for a week was holiday rather than work but it did allow me to visit three producers – and drink Madeira on every occasion that presented itself! Above all, it reminded me that there is nothing like visiting the source to gain a better appreciation of the product and to fire […]

Cap Classique is 50

Cap Classique celebrates 50 years. A wine history that is younger than I am makes me feel ancient but, do you know what, I don’t care because I’m totally up for celebrating with Cap Classique their 50 years of making South African fizz and an exciting new wine story. It all began with Kaapse Vonkel […]


Organic Bordeaux

Being organic is not a piece of cake. Being organic in Bordeaux can be particularly tricky. But it’s a challenge more and more winemakers are prepared to undertake, even in Bordeaux. The region may be criticised for lagging behind the trend towards sustainability and organic winemaking practices but this is unfair and far from the […]


At last – The New Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia

Whose book shelf hasn’t displayed an edition of Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopaedia? Whose fingers haven’t flipped the pages to learn, to refresh or to check? Whether you’re a wine pro or wine enthusiast the likelihood is that you will have had a copy of at least one of its past 5 editions. After a 10 year […]

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WSET Level 2

WSET Level 2 Date/TimeDate(s) – 20/03/2021, 27/03/2021, 03/04/2021, 10/04/20219:30 am – 13:30 pm LocationZOOM The WSET Level 2 Award Course is suitable for anybody who keen to learn more about wine, extending their knowledge to help them buy and enjoy wine more. The course is also appropriate for those employed in the drinks industry and such is a qualification with full […]

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New New York State Wines

Not in any way claiming to be an expert on New York State (NYS) wine, I nevertheless presented a virtual tasting on that very subject. I soon discovered that I wouldn’t need to make any excuses for my lack of knowledge because it seems no one is a NYS expert, even the people who grow […]

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The Crus Bourgeois Alliance Is Updated

In those untroubled, pre-pandemic times, a highlight of my year was the Alliance des Crus Bourgeois du Médoc tasting – always a privilege to taste so many top quality Bordeaux and to gain a real insight into the vintage and its expression across different Médoc appellations. I’ve also had the honour in the past to […]

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Clean Wine – the broader context

The launch of a new, “clean” wine called Avaline by Cameron Diaz and Katherine Power has raised hackles amongst the wine fraternity who, understandably, resent the accompanying claim that most other wines must, by definition, be dirty. However, much though I envy those who see the world in terms of black and white, I seldom […]