Barone Ricasoli, Tuscany

The Ricasoli family have owned the Castello di Brolio since 1141 and claim amongst their clan the Iron Baron, Bettino Ricasoli, former Prime Minister of Italy and wine experimenter.  So on another very hot day in the Siena countryside we headed up to the castle (no thanks to sat nav!) to learn about the wine,…

Vernaccia di San Gimignano

On a very hot day in July we left the air-conditioned comfort of our car and, along with several coach loads of tourists, struggled up a big hill to the town of San Gimignano perched on the top.  The town is famous for its towers, of which there used to be many, but now only…

Decanter – Great Bordeaux Fine Wine Encounter 2012

If I ever had to choose only one wine to drink for the rest of my life it would probably be a Sauternes.  The luscious golden liquid with flavours that move from pineapple and tropical fruits when youthful to the deeply complex dried fruits, honey and gingerbread with age are a wonder to behold.  At this year’s Decanter…

RAW Wine Fair 2012

After leaving Liverpool Street Station it all went very wrong; we turned the wrong way, our new super-phones directed us as if we were driving, and the only person who knew where the the Old Truman Brewery was actually didn’t and told us to turn right instead of left!  So after thirty minutes of aimlessly…

Decanter – Italian Encounter 2012

Having already attended a couple of Decanter events I have learnt a few key tactics that mean you will survive the day.  First of all don’t wear heavy clothing or things that can’t be removed easily – not because after a few too many glasses where you have forgotten to spit you may end up…

Love Wine Festival Bristol

Over the next week I will be visiting the Decanter Great Italian Fine Wine Encounter, the RAW Wine Fair and the London International Wine Fair – that’s a lot of wine to taste.  So when the opportunity arose to visit a small wine event in Bristol with less than thirty companies I jumped at the…

Denbies Wine Estate

On a very miserable Bank holiday weekend what better thing to do than head to a vineyard in Surrey and drink wine.  So we headed to Denbies in Dorking and did just that and I was quite surprised when we arrived, not just at the size of the estate, but also by the amount of…

The English Whisky Company

Whisky you may say, but this is a blog about wine surely?  Well yes it is but as I am doing the Wine and SPIRIT Education Trust diploma, there is a certain amount of spirit tasting involved.  And unfortunately I’m really not a fan of spirits, in particular whisky – it all goes back to…

Decanter Great Spanish Fine Wine Encounter

One great way to learn about wines is to drink a lot of them (what a hard life I lead!).  The only problem with this is the cost involved in drinking enough wines to feel confident when it comes to the WSET diploma blind tasting exams.  So with my fortified wines exam quickly approaching I…

My sense of smell

I had always thought that I had a pretty poor sense of smell.  People around would say, ‘wow can you smell that, it smells amazing (or awful),’ and I would sniff at the air and there would be nothing, or a little of something but nothing that I could identify.  I just presumed that’s how…

Trimbach Tasting – Great Western Wine

As someone who is fairly new to the world of wine I decided that it would be beneficial for my studies if I were to attend as many tastings as possible and I am lucky that living were I do there are loads of great wine merchants hosting such events. On the 25th January I…

My first year in wine

If you had asked me this time last year what the grapes in champagne were or to name which region and a left and right bank, I would have looked at you quite blankly.  Then in June it all changed.  At the time I was writing a food blog and wanted to improve the way…