WineTalk

What would you think of a “virtual” wine fair? At first glance, it may seem a bit ridiculous. How do you taste wine if it’s virtual? But that’s not the goal of this particular wine fair. It’s a strictly professionals only affair. The aim of the 3D Wine Fair is to get wine professionals together, without the hassle and expense of travelling to some far flung destination, and do some serious business. How does it work you might ask. It’s a very straightforward proposition. The website is 3D and uses the latest interactive communication tools from web cams, to audio conferences to chat, it’s all there. Each virtual stand has a plenitude of information about the producer and his/her wines via videos, technical sheets, borchures, etc. The exhibitors post a schedule when they are available so that prospective clients know when to contact them. The Fair is from the 14th to 18th of March, today is the last day but you can still check it out here. As part of the wine fair, the organizers have been running a wine talk show with many notable winemakers who have embraced social media, including Randall Graham of Bonny Doon, Oscar Quevedo of Quevedo Port and Jeff Stai (El Jefe) of Twisted Oak, as well as social media mavens as guests. I was invited to join in on the chat regarding social media and wine blogging. You can hear what myself and David Honig, founder and publisher of Palate Press , an online wine magazine, have to say about interacting with social media from a winebloggers perspective. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Speed dating California wine….

A couple of months ago I went to a tasting, here in London, of what was being marketed as California ‘benchmark’ wines which left me mightly unimpressed. I just knew California vintners could do better having sampled many on my trips home so I was excited when the Sonoma county Vintners invited me to Goodman Steakhouse in Mayfair for a Winemakers Speed-dating event.  First of all Goodman Steakhouse is a quality place and I knew their wine list so I thought if they’re having it at Goodman, the wines gotta be good. And so they were. We weren’t speed dating the winemakers, we were speed dating their wines. 8 hectic minutes to sip, taste, swirl and spit as well as get as much info from the winemakers as possible. 8 minutes might seem like a long time of one to one contact but the first two wines makers I sat down with, we had barely finished introductions let alone getting around to the wine before the bell rang *DING* and it was time to move on! There were 4 winemakers and their wines scattered around the smaller dining room of Goodman. Jim Pedroncelli, Proprietor and Director of Sales and Marketing at Pedroncelli showing off his 2007 Mother Clone Zinfandel, Rod Berglund President and Wine Maker at Joseph Swan Vineyards with his 2005 Zinfandel and 2007 Pinot Noir, followed by Jeff Stewart Vice President Winemaker at Buena Vista with a 2007 Chardonnay and 2007 Pinot Noir and finally Tom Hinde, President and CEO of Flowers Winery with their 2008 Chardonnay and 2007 Pinot Noir. Sonoma Valley specializes in the cool climate varietals chardonnay and pinot noir but also grows the more traditional sauvignon blanc and zinfandel further inland. The range of microclimates and zones varies from the cool Sonoma coast to the rolling hillsides of the Russian River Valley to hilltop estates overlooking the Pacific Ocean. I found the wines to be brilliant examples of the best that California can do. Now THIS is what...

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Guerilla Wine Tasting: A Guest Post from Gorilla

I’m so tired of wine being exclusive. I’m so bored of the London scene. Why can’t us Gorillas have some of the action? I love wine and I think I understand it, so I sent a message out to fellow wine lovers. “Join me by the river to explore and enjoy good wine.” We had fun. We had wine. You saw what all happened… Thanks to Casa Leal, Quinta de Lagoalva and Nicole Ruduss for all their help. And  lots of hugs and kisses for The Winesleuth and Eatlikeagirl for supporting me in my vinous quest. You can read Eatlikeagirl’s post about the tasting here. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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A trip round Courvoisier’s Architectural Punchbowl

Bompass & Parr have done it again. Food architects  and jellymongers extra-ordinaire, B&P have teamed up with Courvoisier for the Architectual Punchbowl. Inspired by Admiral Edward Russell, who created a punchbowl back in 1694 that you could row across, Bompass & Parr have created their very own punchbowl using over a tonne of Courvoisier Exclusif (created specifically for mixing in cocktails) to slake the thirst of over 25,000 people. The theme was shabby chic, peeling wallpaper, half finished rooms, all hidden by a plastic red curtain. Behind the curtain wafted the strains of classical music and once in, there was the lake attended by either very skinny Oompa-Loompas or very young Good Humor Men, not sure which. Made my way to punchbowl side where I was offered the winning punchbowl Courvoisier entry by Joe McCanta of Saf. Afterwards, I unsteadily made my way to the quayside and had a quick float around the bowl. Despite my misgivings, I didn’t fall in! Afterwards we repaired to the bar for our choice of Courvoisier cocktails. We had the Cognito, Courvoisier’s take on the mojito. Great fun and it’s not everyday you get to tool around a 4000 gallon punchbowl on a gigantic orange slice. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Chapel Down and the Blaggers Banquet

Just a quick post today to remind all of you of the Blagger’s Banquet taking place this Sunday, Nov 15th at the Hawksmoor in Liverpool St. It’s for a great cause, Action Against Hunger and everything in the auction and for the dinner has been blagged by all of us food and wine bloggers. Niamh from Eatlikeagirl has been the driving force into getting this event off the ground but she had time to have lunch at Roast with the Chapel Down people who have generously donated beer, English sparkling wine and are auctioning off a year’s vine lease at their Tenterden property. After lunch, Niamh and I had a chance to talk to Frazer Thompson, Chief Exec of Chapel Down to tell us a bit about what their wines and what they’re donating to the event. [viddler id=f1d37fca&w=437&h=392] Hope to see you all on Sunday. Contact me or  click here for tickets. Next post coming up… our lunch at Roast with all those fabulous Chapel Down wines. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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