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  • New year, New Zealand

    Posted on January 12, 2011 by Enotriaadmin

    The New Zealand trade tasting (NZATT) is always the first of the main generic country tastings each year, and this year's edition was upon us seemingly before we'd tidied away the mince pie crumbs and turkey leftovers. Lord's Cricket Ground on a wet Tuesday in early January may not be everyone's idea of a good ...

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  • Mouton change

    Posted on December 25, 2010 by Enotriaadmin

    "Premier je suis, second je fus, Mouton ne change."* So goes the proclamation of Baron Phillippe de Rothschild when his beloved Mouton was elevated from the Second Growth (2eme Cru) to First Growth (1er Cru) status in 1973 by the Bordeaux powers that be. The Baron's point being that Mouton had always been 1er ...

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  • Leaving the Languedoc

    Posted on December 7, 2010 by Enotriaadmin

    grubbed up vines

    Just back from a trip around the Languedoc to visit some of the fantastic new producers from the Great Western Wines portfolio. I came back wondering how an area with such good wines can be so deeply mired in the “crise viticole”. The statistics are stark. Over the past ten years many Languedoc vineyards have been abandoned, a further 100,000 hectares have been grubbed up, and production has fallen from 20 million hectolitres to 11 million hectolitres. Thus, the reduction in output from this single region is greater than the entire annual wine exports of Australia; a total of 8 million hectolitres. Statistics are one thing; seeing a forlorn empty vineyard with a pile of old wood lying next to it is another. Florence Guy, of the beautiful Château Coujan, is pragmatic: “We have decided to plant aromatics like thyme which will be made into essential oils at the local distillery, there are not many other uses for old vineyard sites”. Let’s hope that the market recovers before many more vignerons go under. In the meantime, bulk prices are increasing but this is still a treasure trove of absurdly good bargains from the area, and, as Florence says “nothing makes better barbeques than vine wood”.

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  • Mazzei - the video

    Posted on December 2, 2010 by Enotriaadmin

    Anyone feeling a little low in snowbound and dark UK - please watch this video of Sangiovese harvesting in the Tuscan sunshine at Mazzei. It's a good way to practice your Italian too - find out exactly how 'clonal selection' is pronounced in Italian!

    [flv: 300 200]

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  • Crasto 1

    Posted on November 23, 2010 by Enotriaadmin

    Miguel compares ports - pic Douglas Blyde
    Quinta do Crasto (from Castrum meaning defensive position, Latin fans)
    was established over 300 years ago on a spit of land high above the river. Like most of the great Portuguese estates, its fame was initially gained through Port, but over the past 15 years has built a a strong ...

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  • Unplugged wines

    Posted on November 10, 2010 by Enotriaadmin

    A fantastic tasting at Boffi's super sleek showrooms yesterday. I can honestly say I don't think I've ever tasted in such elegant surroundings...
    The wines were a wonderful cross section of Piemontese terroir. Fontanafredda led the tasting with (tra l'altro) a vertical of their fabulous Barolo Vigna La Rosa. This went all the way back to ...

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