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Hardys owner to sell wine brands, says report

Published:  21 December, 2010

Constellation may be about to sell most of its wine businesses outside America, reports suggest.

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Geoffrey Dean's Ashes and wine blog: how inspiring Aussie winemakers make up for Perth defeat

Published:  21 December, 2010

If it was back to earth with a bump after England's thrashing at Perth, what better way to soothe the disappointment than to spend some time with one of Australia's pioneering winemakers, Bill Pannell.

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Harpers Drinking Out Excellence Awards shortlist announced

Published:  14 December, 2010

The shortlisted restaurant and bars in this year's Harpers Drinking Out Excellence Awards have been announced.

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Geoffrey Dean: Ashes and wine blog reports on impact of rain to 2011 vintage

Published:  10 December, 2010


This has been a good week to be an Englishman in Australia following England's crushing victory in the second Test.

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Ehrmanns adds Kiwi producer to its portfolio

Published:  08 December, 2010

Ehrmanns has been appointed as the UK agent for family owned New Zealand producer Giesen Wines.

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Geoffrey Dean: our man Down Under's Ashes and wine blog, Adelaide

Published:  06 December, 2010

The Adelaide Test has always been my favourite in an Ashes series Down Under. It's not just because the Oval is the most attractive in the country - with its cathedral, scores of trees and stylish stands including a brand new Western Grandstand that cost £50m - but because the whole occasion is the most social of the Australian cricketing calendar.

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Geoffrey Dean: our man Down Under's Ashes and wine blog, Adelaide

Published:  06 December, 2010

The Adelaide Test has always been my favourite in an Ashes series Down Under. It's not just because the Oval is the most attractive in the country - with its cathedral, scores of trees and stylish stands including a brand new Western Grandstand that cost £50m - but because the whole occasion is the most social of the Australian cricketing calendar.

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#winedealfriday gathers momentum

Published:  26 November, 2010

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Wine with a quick response

Published:  23 November, 2010

One of the first wines in the UK that precedes the rush to include a quick response code on the label is the Vinultra Insight Sauvignon Blanc 2009 (Laithwaites Wine, rrp £11.99).

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Pernod Ricard launches campaign for Brancott Estate

Published:  23 November, 2010

Pernod Ricard UK is launching a marketing campaign for its New Zealand brand, Brancott Estate, to raise awareness with UK consumers.

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Cheval Blanc smashes wine auction record

Published:  17 November, 2010

An imperial of Cheval Blanc 1947 has broken the record for a price paid for a single bottle at auction.

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Cheval Blanc smashes wine auction record

Published:  17 November, 2010

An imperial of Cheval Blanc 1947 has broken the record for a price paid for a single bottle at auction.

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Pernod Ricard campaign against drink driving

Published:  15 November, 2010

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Richard Siddle: Argentine Adventures, Part Two

Published:  14 November, 2010


Famous last words...having said I was sure I would be back in Mendoza city one day it did not expect to be walking back in to the Diplomatic Hotel some 14 hours later.

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Richard Siddle: Argentine Adventures, Part Two

Published:  14 November, 2010


Famous last words...having said I was sure I would be back in Mendoza city one day it did not expect to be walking back in to the Diplomatic Hotel some 14 hours later.

Read more...

Richard Siddle: Argentine Adventures, Part Two

Published:  14 November, 2010


Famous last words...having said I was sure I would be back in Mendoza city one day it did not expect to be walking back in to the Diplomatic Hotel some 14 hours later.

Read more...

Richard Siddle does Argentina

Published:  12 November, 2010

Harpers Wine & Spirit editor Richard Siddle is in the clutches of Wines of Argentina...

 

Days two, three and four in Argentina after an aborted mission on Sunday night due to the might of the Zonda wind keeping us in Santiago for an extra night.

 

Thanks to Lindsay Talas and buying team at Thierry's for helping take us bewildered and clueless in Santiago airport to safety of downtown hotel and for watering and feeding us. Good job they happened to be sitting the row behind on cancelled flight.

 

Now we are more than acclimatised to  Mendoza and in the clutches of Wines of Argentina we have more than made up for lost time.

 

Whirlwind of winery visits, introductions, business cards and Malbec. Blown away by friendliness and enthusiam of everyone we have met all of whom have helped turn my Argentina knowledge bank from "getting by" to "budding expert" in space of 72 hours. But with such gorgeous wines it is easy (ish) to keep going through the relentless pace.

 

Being introduced to the variations and vagaries of Malbec and ability of winemakers to make such different wines even when on each others' doorsteps. For someone who drinks so much Argentine wine at home i have really enjoyed discovering the differences clearly evident in cool climate regions and wines of Uco Valley, Turpagato and Salta versus Mendoza valley.

 

Lovely zippy fresh wines with great balanced acidity ideal in my humble opinion for UK consumers. Just wish there were more of them in the UK.

 

Highlight has to be trip out to Uco valley. Not just for the wine but the company of the Andes on the other side of the road spread out across the horizon with its snow capped mountains glinting in the late spring sun.

 

Also the experience of driving along the highways out of Mendoza like in a convoy from Mad Max with every shape and condition of battered old cars, vans and lorries that look like the rust and holes are actually keeping them together. Passing lorries laden down with garlic freshly picked from the fields and horse drawn carts and guys on ponies.

 

This is a country that is clearly twinned with the land and whilst the hi tech wineries and skills of the winemakers are all well and good it is the sight of the farmers, the workers in clapped out buses and the harsh,  rural way of life that is particularly grounding.

 

Back in the world of wine and tastings have enjoyed the potential of the whites ss well as reds. Cool climate Uco viognier is certainly going on my Christmas wish list along with the delicately matured, less perfumed almost Vinho Verde style fresh, citrus  Torrontes.

 

Interesting to see so many varieties cropping up here and it is often the carefully crafted blends that are the stars of the tastings.

 

Day long feastings on empanadas has foolishly not left much room for big steaks in the evening.

 

But lost my cherry, as it were, in the company of the Ever Ready Wines of Argentina Andrew Maidment at the wonderful 1884 restaurant in grounds of the Catena/Rothschild winery  in Mendoza. Complete with outside grill, oven and asado.

 

Not seen a pup squeak of Mendoza city itself but have a feeling I will be coming back...

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Richard Siddle, Chilean adventures: winery opening Errazuriz style

Published:  08 November, 2010


When I was first told that as part of the Errazuriz Don Maximiano winery opening event in Chile I would be expected to wear a dinner suit for the gala dinner, the prospect of lugging the full paraphernalia half way round the world did not flll me with excitement.

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Richard Siddle, Chilean adventures: winery opening Errazuriz style

Published:  08 November, 2010


When I was first told that as part of the Errazuriz Don Maximiano winery opening event in Chile I would be expected to wear a dinner suit for the gala dinner, the prospect of lugging the full paraphernalia half way round the world did not flll me with excitement.

Read more...

Richard Siddle, Chilean adventures: winery opening Errazuriz style

Published:  08 November, 2010


When I was first told that as part of the Errazuriz Don Maximiano winery opening event in Chile I would be expected to wear a dinner suit for the gala dinner, the prospect of lugging the full paraphernalia half way round the world did not flll me with excitement.

Read more...