What a year it’s been! So long 2009, Hello 2010…

I’m not really one to look back, I’m either daydreaming about the future or looking forward to tonight’s wine – more or less the same thing. But I saw one of Niamh’s tweets about her year-end round-up and it got me to reminiscing about my vinous adventures this past  year. The great thing about a blog – I’ve got a record of many of my favourite drinking adventures. Not all of them mind you, because many I just never got around to blogging about but I did manage to put up almost 120 blog posts this year! I would have done more but I was computer-less over the summer after my laptop was stolen in June. This was definitely the year that The Winesleuth embraced video in all it’s gory messiness. Whether the videos made any sense, well, I’ll let you decide but I sure did have a lot of fun making them. I’d like to get a bit more creative in 2010 and maybe even, dare I say it, a bit more professional. My favourites of the year include ones I made with my good friend and fellow wineblogger Wine90 – she just cracks me up. Here we’re reviewing the Balfour Brut Rose…. But Bibendum Dan was another excellent foil, here we are talking about hairy armpit wines… Fun events, as when Catavino came to town and their winetasting at Vinoteca… [viddler id=74e84e69&w=437&h=333] or the Naked Wines Argentine wine auction….. [viddler id=f70e4865&w=437&h=392] and then there’s just amusing and charming winemakers…Etienne Hugel of the Alsatian winemaker Hugel & Fils… [viddler id=9fe1ae3d&w=437&h=392] and Neil McGuigan of the Australian McGuigan Vineyards, to name a few… [viddler id=49575c47&w=437&h=392] And, of course, the vids of my wine reviews, my favourite has to be one I did in S. Carolina while I was on holiday – every time I see it, it reminds me of what a great holiday I had… Of course there was Twitter as well and the Foodies, most especially Eatlikeagirl with whom I did the...

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Time is running out to register for the ’09 European Winebloggers Conf!!!

Last year I had the pleasure to attend the inaugural 2008 European Winebloggers Conference in Rioja. I had a fantastic time,  met some great people and got to drink lots of quality Rioja, among other wines. I mean, that is my kind of conference! The purpose of the conference is to help all us on-liners meet in real life, exchange ideas and hopefully come away with plenty to think about in utilizing social media. It’s great when you get the chance to meet the people you twitter with, blog with or about or just read their posts online. I’m sooo looking forward to this year’s conference in Portugal. The same folks who organized last year’s EWBC, Ryan and Gabriella Opaz (Catavino), and Robert MacIntosh (Wine Conversation) have  teamed up with Viniportugal, the premier sponsor, to bring us winebloggers an event to remember. The weekend kicks off on Thursday,Oct 29th with a pre-conference EWBC gathering at the Cortes de Cima winery, which promises to be a great day out before heading back to Lisbon for the conference proper. Tickets for the event are 95 euros for bloggers and 195 euros for non-bloggers and industry types. What does your ticket include? Discount on a hotel room (which includes breakfast) at the VIP Grand Lisboa – location of the EWBC 2 sponsored lunches 2 sponsored dinners 2 sponsored grand tastings A full day of winery visits in 1 of the 3 Portuguese wine regions: Setabul / Terras do Sado, Ribatejo or Alentejo A full day of sessions on everything from monetizing your blog to videoblogging 101 Enormous amounts of networking opportunities A chance to taste wines from across Portugal An opportunity to attend the Douro Boys Press Junket trip to the Douro after the conference And much much more! Hit up the official website for all the lastest info and watch this space for details on videoblogging 101, as yours truly, The Winesleuth will be participating as a panelist, stay tuned… …And speaking of videos, check out a rerun from...

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Matsu – sounds japanese but it’s Spanish (w/video)

I found one other video from the London International Wine Fair which I just have to post because I really liked the wine and Ricardo Arramberi Perez was such a lovely fellow. It’s another tinta de toro. That’s tempranillo masquerading as yet another varietal from the west of Spain. I wrote about tinta de toro in a previous post so won’t bore you with too many details but you can click here if you want to read the original post. I met Ricardo at the Catavino Spanish and Portuguese tasting that they hosted at the Westbridge Pub in Battersea during the LIWF. Charley McVeigh was also a very charming host and came up with a delicious array of cheeses. Unfortunately, I lost all the photos when my laptop was stolen so you’ll just have to take my word for it! Anyway, here is a quick tasting of  the 2006 Matsu, a wine made from tinta de toro. Ricardo and his family are originally from Rioja but now they’re in the province of Zamora, producing wine from the D.O. Toro. Check out the video to find out what I thought of it and a bit of history from Ricardo….salud! Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Toro!toro!toro! – sippin’ on the bull at the LIWF, video

Tinta de Toro. Wine of the Bull? Is that like the Hungarian wine, Bull’s blood? The origins of the name may be lost in the mists of time but I can tell you that tinta de toro is a local varietal found in the western half of Spain, near the town of Zamora. It’s thought that the varietal is an adaptation of that traditional Spanish varietal, tempranillo. Tempranillo does go by so many names, ojo de liebre, tinto fino, tinto del pais, ulle de llebre and tinto roriz (in Portugal) to name a few. The province of Zamora, where the D.O. Toro is located is in the extreme western part of the region of Castillo Y Leon in western Spain, near the border with Portugal. As a matter of fact, the river Duero (or Douro as it’s known in Portugal) cuts through the region.  The D.O.Toro vineyards are in the southeastern part of the province. The region was demarcated in 1987 but they’ve been growing grapes there since Roman times and the wines were quite prized during the Middle Ages and beyond, even being sent on ships to the New World to sustain the conquistadores on the tough job of subduing the natives.  There are currently 8000 hectares under cultivation. Toro is best known for it’s tinta de toro but they also grow malvasia, garnacha and the white varietal, verdejo. The Tinta de Toro red wines are known for being lusher and richer versions of tempranillo due to the vineyards more southernly situation.  Whilst wandering around the London International Wine Fair with Gabriella of Catavino, we came across the Munia brand of tinto de toro and decided to give them a try, the video says it all…. [viddler id=64f1ab91&w=437&h=333] Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Slide show from the LIWF, London 2009

Last week was the London International Wine Fair and to say I had a great time would be an understatement. It was 3 perfect days of discovering, tasting and non-stop talking about wine, wine and more wine. I truly never get bored of talking about wine. This is the third year I’ve gone and even though it seemed to be familiar territory, there’s always something new. I also managed to make it to the Distil show this year, which was all about the spirits. This year in particular, my wineblogger friends from Catavino and Adegga were there to promote the winebloggers conference taking place in Portugal this Autumn. Needless to say, the European Winebloggers conference stand became my home away from home during the 3 days of the fair. I met lots of great producers, tried some interesting and fabulous wines and hung out with both old and new friends. I’d like to shout out to Andrew from Spittoon, Jean from Cooksister, Bibendum Dan and Bibendum Erica, Rob (Wine conversation), German winemaker Patrick  Johner, Ryan and Gabriella Opaz (Catavino), Andre R. (Adegga), Penny from my fave Chelsea winecellar, The Bluebird, The winemaestro, and my friends from Oddbins, Eleanor and Ana and all the wonderful peeps I met at the fair this year. During the next few weeks, I’ll be posting videos from the fair so keep an eye out for interesting, informative and (I hope) entertaining videos. Until next year’s wine fair…Cheers! Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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