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Sweet & sour

Published:  23 July, 2008

Say no to oak - help put the fruit back in wine.' This sign, posted up behind the tasting bar at Trimbach, is a neat summation of the charms of Alsace. Wines with great poise, a good structure of acidity and, of course, some of the best food wines you'll ever taste. Why, then, does it appear to be an underappreciated wine region, one that never grabs the headlines?

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The Interview: Gianpiero Colucci, Manager, Spaghetti House, Marble Arch branch

Published:  23 July, 2008

The Marble Arch branch is the most recent Spaghetti House restaurant to open (in mid-2005) and the first trialling a more modern look. Spaghetti House has nine venues in London, the first of which opened in 1955.
A native of Bari in Puglia, Gianpiero Colucci worked at Pescatori in London and at the Cranbourn Street branch of Spaghetti House before becoming one of the chain's youngest restaurant managers. This branch was a finalist in the Best Italian Restaurant category of The Pizza Pasta & Italian Food Industry Awards 2006 (www.papa.org.uk).
Suppliers include Berkmann, Vinum
and Alivini.

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Gluck's new wine texting service

Published:  23 July, 2008

Malcolm Gluck has written his last edition of Superplonk, and will now provide weekly recommendations by text message in his new service, The Glug Report.

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Terroir alert

Published:  23 July, 2008

As part of its campaign to increase awareness of Chile's potential for diversity in making premium wine, last week Wines of Chile hosted a visual presentation that included dramatic photographs of 10 Chilean wine-producing valleys, as well as scores of photographs of the different soil types and climatic conditions that can be found in the country.

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INAO permits yield increase in Champagne

Published:  23 July, 2008

By Giles Fallowfield
Production in Champagne could increase by as much as 70 million bottles from the next (2007) harvest. L'Institut National de l'Appellation d'Origine (INAO) has decided to allow the maximum permitted yield in the appellation to rise from 13,000 to 15,500 kilos per hectare.

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2004 Burgundies stolen in transit

Published:  23 July, 2008

Several cases of top-end Burgundy were stolen from lorries en route to Richards Walford in the UK, in two unrelated incidents last week. The wines, which have a total market value of more than 5,000 and are all from the 2004 vintage, went missing some time between Tuesday and Wednesday last week (28 and 29 November).

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Takeover rumours surround Blavod

Published:  23 July, 2008

Blavod Extreme Spirits, the producer of flavoured vodkas, is discussing being taken over by an unidentified American company. If an offer is made, it will value Blavod at no less than 12.8 million.

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Chile needs to improve image

Published:  23 July, 2008

The message at the launch of The Wines of Chile, a new book by Peter Richards, was clear: Chile must overcome its cheap and cheerful image.

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Good times back for Burgundy

Published:  23 July, 2008

By Rebecca Gibb
After five lean years, sales of Burgundy are back to levels not seen since the 2001 campaign.

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New Difford guide

Published:  23 July, 2008

Edition number six of former Class editor Simon Difford's cocktail books, known as the diffordsguide' has been launched. Sponsored by Beefeater gin, it comes in a hardback format to resist splashes on the backbar and runs to 2,000 mixes. Difford has also released a guide to bars around the world, with an abbrievated list of cocktails, plus a Time Out-style pubs and bars guide to London.

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Pommery GILT range

Published:  23 July, 2008

The new GILT Champagne Lounge at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower in Knightsbridge, designed on a Champagne theme by Hirsch Bedner Associates and opened earlier this month, is to offer a full range of Pommery cuves. Chandeliers and the walls of the Lounge are lined with hand-blown Murano glass bubbles and the golden colour of the floor is intended to echo aged Vintage Champagne. Vranken Pommery Monopole UK manager Sara Hicks said: Designers wanted to give guests the impression that they're actually sitting in a glass of Champagne'.

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New boss at German Wine Institute

Published:  23 July, 2008

Monika Reule has been appointed as managing director of the German Wine Institute.

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Mason takes WOSA job

Published:  23 July, 2008

Wines of South Africa has appointed Jo Mason as the new UK market manager, replacing Sophie Waggett, who is leaving the generic body to have a baby.

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Up for the challenge

Published:  23 July, 2008

Berry Bros & Rudd's new non-executive director Philip Bowman is not afraid of change in the drinks industry - he embraces it, as Ron Emler discovers

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Dartington glass launch

Published:  23 July, 2008

Joe Wadsack, the voluble broadcaster and larger-than-life bon viveur, has teamed up with English crystal glass maker, Dartington, to promote its Winemaster range of stemware.

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Rmy to pull out of Maxxium deal

Published:  23 July, 2008

by Ron Emler
Rmy Cointreau has set itself up as a possible takeover target by announcing that it is pulling out of the Maxxium distribution joint venture to regain control of sales of its brands.

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Calvet sold to owner of JP Chenet

Published:  23 July, 2008

Bordeaux negoiant house Calvet has been sold to Les Grands Chais de France, which owns the JP Chenet brand.

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Super Seconds

Published:  23 July, 2008
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My sweet love

Published:  23 July, 2008

The most baffling thing about Sauternes is how its producers survive. It's not just the unpredictability of Botrytis cinerea; in 2004 the yield at Chteau Climens was less than four hectolitres per hectare (4hl/ha). At Chteau Suduiraut in the same year they left three-quarters of the grapes behind. The opening price of the wine, what there was of it, was 32 at Climens, 22-26 at Suduiraut. Both prices were less than the cost of production.

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The Interview: Onder Sahan and Haldun Ertem

Published:  23 July, 2008

by Christian Davis

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