Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.

The Sunday Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

It may be too late to buy the great 2005 Bordeaux wines en primeur, says JOANNA SIMON, but the top Burgundies from 2005 are now being offered. She is in no doubt that it is a great year for red, and in many cases, for white Burgundy too.

Read more...

The Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

There is no getting away from the 2005 Burgundy. JANE MacQUITTY says that for once, the Burgundian wine merchants' hype could be justified. Indeed, such was the hype that even David Blunkett and his guide dog turned up for the former Home Secretary's wine-buying syndicate. She considers the 2005 vintage to be a great red Burgundy vintage from top to bottom, though overall the whites are not in the same league, with dilution and a lack of spine-tingling acidity and minerality'. Every dog has its day, she observes, and I'll bet David Blunkett's salivated over the tasting as much as I did.'

Read more...

The Observer

Published:  23 July, 2008

Another wine writer enthusing about the 2005 Burgundy is TIM ATKIN MW. He regards London's Burgundy week as an opportunity to brush glasses with some of the most famous winemakers in the world and sip reds that many of us will never be able to afford. And there is so much hype about the 2005s that many wines have already sold out.
Is 2005 the greatest Burgundy vintage ever? For Atkin, the answer is yes and no. He warns that some of the reds have uncomfortably high levels of acidity with insufficient fruit sweetness to balance them. But he concedes that there are some wonderful wines on offer.

Read more...

The Sunday Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

JOANNA SIMON isn't comfortable with the statement: Bordeaux is the largest fine wine-making region in the world.' She believes it is misleading as most of its bottles - red and white - are anything but fine wine'. Nevertheless, she recommends: 2001 Chteau Greysac (6.99 when you buy two; Majestic); 2004 Chteau Robin, Lussac St Emilion (6.99; Morrisons); and 2002 Pauillac de Chteau Latour (24.95; Lay & Wheeler).

Read more...

The Sunday Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

SUSY ATKINS knows what her readers want at this time of year - plausible reasons to get outside some decent hooch. If you are in the grip of a horrible cold, a classic hot toddy does work wonders, she says. Its steam unblocks your nose, the sweetness provides an energy boost and the whiskey and spice have miraculous warming qualities.' And as the wife of an Irishman she loyally argues that the best hot toddies are made with Irish whiskey. However, she argues that the variation of using the Irish moonshine poitin (potcheen) instead of whiskey is controversial. The legal stuff is a clear, simple spirit, a lot like vodka, and though acceptable in a hot toddy lacks the colour and flavour of cask-aged whiskey.
She recommends Bushmills 10-Year-Old Irish Whiskey (24.99; Oddbins) and Powers Gold Label Whiskey (15.99; drinkfinder.co.uk).

Read more...

The Sunday Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

Like Victoria Moore, JOANNA SIMON has been reading The Wine Diet by Roger Corder and latches on to the message that moderate wine drinkers are less likely to be overweight than non-drinkers.
She draws her readers attention to the chewy, plummy, toasty' Ctes de Saint-Mont, Chteau de Sabazan (13.95), and 2001 Madiran, Plnitude (12.99 to 14.95).

Read more...

The Observer

Published:  23 July, 2008

Chile made its name with Cabernet Sauvignon and the red Bordeaux blends. But TIM ATKIN says that it will also be famous for cool-climate Syrah, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc. He observes that in the 1990s, most of the country's wines were inferior copies of French originals. Now Chile has become one of the world's most exciting wine-producing regions with a mind-boggling number of vinyards.

Read more...

The Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

Forgetting to celebrate Burns Night would be a big mistake, says JANE MacQUITTY. Wishy-washy white spirits might be well and good but grown-up spirits drinkers graduate to the full-on flavours of whisky. Decent blends consist of two-thirds or more of a decent characterful malt and Bailie Nicol Jarvie (13.46 Tesco, 13.49 Waitrose) is a wondrous eight-year-old blend with an arresting gingery spice.

Read more...

Financial Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

JANCIS ROBINSON MW recently tasted 19 luxury Champagne cuves. 'Champagne is the one wine in which image and reputation can influence the palate most powerfully,' she says. That's why 'assessing the wines on the basis of taste alone can be so revealing'. The most impressive were 'the extremely energising and intriguing' Taittinger Prlude Grand Cru and the 'underpriced and under-appreciated' Charles Heidsieck, Blanc des Millnnaires 1995 Blanc de Blancs - 'a beautifully mature wine'. Majestic is selling the Taittinger Prlude for 24.99 a bottle if you buy three or 34.99 at larger Tesco stores for a single bottle. The Heidsieck is much harder to find in the UK; www.vintagewinegifts.co.uk is selling it for 89.99, with a corkscrew, wine pourer, drip stopper and wine stopper thrown in. Meanwhile, Laurent-Perrier Grand Sicle and 2000 Taittinger also showed well in the tasting, and Philipponnat Clos des Goisses 1996 'should be wonderful in a year or three'. Krug Ros is worth a mention for being 'much more beguiling than any current bottling of Krug Grande Cuve to have come my way in the last year.

Read more...

The Sunday Express

Published:  23 July, 2008

Turning the spotlight on the Irish, JAMIE GOODE picks some value-for-money buys to complement classic dishes like Irish stew and beef in Guinness. He highlights an Australian fizz that he reckons his readers will either love or hate. The 2002 Green Point ZD Vintage Brut (13.99; Waitrose) is described as special for two reasons: first, it is sealed with a crown cap; and second the usual dosage' - the addition of sweet wine - has been omitted. A bone-dry finish and great with food is Goode's verdict. Among the others, he reckons 2005 Vielle Fontaine Vin de Pays de Comt Tolosan (2.99; Tesco) is a good cheap wine: fresh, fruity and with a savoury bite.

Read more...

The Guardian

Published:  23 July, 2008

In the wake of the publication of The Wine Diet by Professor Roger Corder (9.99, Sphere), VICTORIA MOORE responds to readers asking about the wines he recommends.
Corder has identified a compound - procyanidin - that is abundant in some red wines and which he maintains is good for the heart. While Moore takes the view that the book's title is a little too good to be true, she gamely tried a handful of the wines Corder recommends.
She says that generally the wines are unyielding heavy characters, though she was most taken by the relatively accessible' 2003 Chteau de Sabazan, Ctes de Saint-Mont (12.99; Nicolas, Grape Ideas, Bedales) and 2001 Madiran Plnitude (about 14.99; Bedales, Adnams).
Having done her duty by her readers, the gloves come off: I can't help feeling it might be easier to take procyanidins from food, and drink wine for pleasure and at whim,' she says.

Read more...

The Daily Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

JONATHAN RAY has been interviewing a happy man: Christian Seely, MD of AXA Millsimes, the vineyard-owning arm of AXA Insurance. I can't imagine enjoying myself more,' he tells an unsurprised Ray.

Read more...

The Independent

Published:  23 July, 2008

A visit to the Cape winelands is a walk on the wild side that ANTHONY ROSE has discovered. Not only has African wine been on a role since the end of apartheid, with Tulbagh an emerging new wine region, you don't have to venture far to see cheeky baboons.

Read more...

The Daily Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

JONATHAN RAY travels round Roussillon with Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins du Roussillon export director Eric Aracil, passing through some of the 35,000 hectares of Grenache, Carignan, Syrah, Cinsault and Mourvdre. 'Although it's sunny, it can be cold and windy here, with damp blown in from the sea. But the weather, the grapes and the low yields all result in intense and fascinating wines,' Domaine Ferrer Ribire winemaker Bruno Ribire tells Ray over dinner in the tiny village of Terrats.

Read more...

Financial Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

Now that Canada is producing world-class wines, it is surely high time the industry educated Canadians properly about their own products, says JANCIS ROBINSON. She knows of no nation more defensive about its wines than Canada. In tasting 70 wines, of which 17 she pronounces as world class', Robinson meets a woman whose job it is to brief Canadian diplomats on the glories of their own country's wines'.
She singles out Daniel Lenko's 2002 Syrah from the Niagara Peninsula as truly outstanding' and also mentions two joint ventures, Clos Jordanne and Osoyoos Larose. The majority of the wines she tasted were from Niagara and, if they had a fault, it was lack of concentration. Canada is also plagued by ladybirds, which taint the wines by imparting a raw horseradish or peanut shell aroma.

Read more...

Financial Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

Now that Canada is producing world-class wines, it is surely high time the industry educated Canadians properly about their own products, says JANCIS ROBINSON. She knows of no nation more defensive about its wines than Canada. In tasting 70 wines, of which 17 she pronounces as 'world class', Robinson meets a woman whose job it is to brief Canadian diplomats on the 'glories of their own country's wines'. She singles out Daniel Lenko's 2002 Syrah from the Niagara Peninsula as 'truly outstanding' and also mentions two joint ventures, Clos Jordanne and Osoyoos Larose. The majority of the wines she tasted were from Niagara and, if they had a fault, it was lack of concentration. Canada is also plagued by ladybirds, which taint the wines by imparting a raw horseradish or peanut shell aroma.

Read more...

The Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

In Monday's edition of the paper ALEXANDRA FREAN AND ALEXANDRA BLAIR report that 10 million annually is now generated by further education colleges in selling their own products. Plumpton College, in East Sussex produces 23,000 bottles of wine and Reaseheath College in Nantwich, Cheshire, having recently invested 1 million in building a winery, has its wines now listed at London's Michelin-star Hakkasan restaurant.

Read more...

The Observer

Published:  23 July, 2008

Apparently, if you send a turnip round the world, it still comes back a turnip, according to a friend of TIM ATKIN's dad. Atkin moves onto talk about Tempranillo as a world-class grape that is 'vastly superior to Merlot, more reliable that Pinot Noir and ages as well as Cabernet'. From a recent Spanish tasting, Atkin says it is Ribera del Duero that stands out, with Rioja not far behind and La Mancha showing enormous potential. His recommendations are: 2004 Castillo La Paz, La Mancha (4.99, Sainsbury's); 2004 Jme Rioja (5.97, Asda); 2003 Valmoro, Toro (8.99, Great Northern Wine); and 2003 Finca Villacreces, Ribera del Duero (21.95, Liberty Wines and Bennetts Fine Wines). Not a turnip among them, he says.

Read more...

The Independent

Published:  23 July, 2008

Brunello di Montalcino is the subject of ANTHONY ROSE's column this week. Of the region that was the first to receive Italy's DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita) in 1980, he says: 'Even within Italy, no zone offers such a vivid expression of the Sangiovese grape.' His recommendations include: 2001 Banfi Poggio Alle Mura (22, Majestic); 2004 Sesti (14.50, Jeroboams); and 2001 Barbi Brunello (27.50, Cambridge Wine Merchants).

Read more...

The Daily Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

ANDREW DOWNIE heads south to visit a 20,000ha vineyard in the middle of Brazil's northeastern desert, eight degrees south of the equator. Owned by Portuguese winemaker Do Sul, ViniBrasil has an irrigation system that pumps river water across a 120,000ha holding. With 12 hours of sunlight for 300 days a year, Brazil can have as many harvests as it wants, says ViniBrasil's Carlos Moura. The company produces the Rio Sol brand, from which a Cabernet Sauvignon-Shiraz blend will available in Waitrose later this month (4.99).

Read more...