Neil McGuigan and Vines in the City – podcast

Sep 28, 12 Neil McGuigan and Vines in the City – podcast

Posted by in Australia, Podcast

I first met Australian winemaker Neil McGuigan of McGuigan Wines a few years ago when the winery first did the “Vines in the City” event in London. I thought it was a great way to get consumers literally closer to the vines without the hassle of having to actually travel to a vineyard. Neil and Brian McGuigan were back on this side of the world recently, this time to launch some new wines and also to introduce their “Vines in the City” to the good people of Dublin. Having attended the opening, I can say it was a smashing success, sometimes we in the wine trade take for granted the fact that we can visit vineyards and talk to winemakers on a regular basis. It was great to hear what consumers had to say about the whole experience, in general I’d say it made them very enthusiastic to learn more about wine. Before they opened the gates, I sat down with Neil to find out more about the new wines they are launching in the UK and why they brought it to Dublin. You can hear the podcast on the following link: Neil McGuigan and Vines in the City A big thanks to Neil McGuigan for taking the time to chat with me. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Chatting with Edgardo del Popolo of Dona Paula Estates, Argentina

Sep 24, 12 Chatting with Edgardo del Popolo of Dona Paula Estates, Argentina

Posted by in Argentina

“Blends are definitely the next step for Argentine malbec.” That opinion was voiced to me by Dona Paula winemaker Edgardo del Popolo while we were tasting a few of his wines the other day. Edgardo (or Edy as he prefers to be called) and I were at The Only Running Footman in Mayfair for a small tasting and we were chatting about not only Dona Paula’s wines but also meandered into the future of Argentine wine. Edy was referring specifically to malbec/cabernet franc blends. He thinks that consumers today are looking for not just everyday wines from Argentina but also for premium, high quality wines. And that is where blends come into play. Dona Paula have found some great vineyard spots in the Uco Valley of Mendoza and it is here that he’s planted not only cabernet franc but also chardonnay and malbec. Edy thinks that the cabernet franc lifts malbec, giving it the structure that it needs. He compares it to Bordeaux blends, merlot and cabernet sauvignon are fine on their own but put them together and it’s a whole different dimension. So what about these great vineyards that Edy was talking about? He was referring to the Altamira and Gualtallary vineyards of the Uco Valley. Dona Paula has such confidence in Edy that about 15 years ago he was tasked with finding the best region both in climate and soil for Dona Paula’s wines. Edy found both areas by flying over them and once identified, they had to ride in on horseback to inspect the soil as they were in a completely isolated region. Dona Paula then bought 160 hectares, each hectare going through extensive analysis to decide what would grow best there. Edy liked the region because the soils were particularly poor but full of calcium carbonate which he believes gives his wines the minerality he prizes. One of the grapes he thinks do well in the Gualtallary is chardonnay. Edy wants to make a chardonnay that is not the usual...

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Chatting with Sir George Fistonich of Villa Maria Estates

Sep 19, 12 Chatting with Sir George Fistonich of Villa Maria Estates

Posted by in New Zealand wine

“I’ve never met a wineblogger before, it was very nice talking to you…” That’s what Sir George Fistonich told me after we had spent about 45 minutes chatting about his Villa Maria Estates’ past, present and future. I was amused that he was amused to meet a “wineblogger”. Sir George was in town last night as part of the 50th anniversary celebration of the founding of Villa Maria Estates and that’s how I found myself chatting with him.  From the humble beginnings of leased land, George and his wife, Jane, have built Villa Maria into a well respected (and well awarded) wine brand.  I had the opportunity to chat with George and learn a bit  more about Villa Maria before a grand tasting and dinner at the BAFTA in Piccadilly. After initially talking about the history of Villa Maria, I asked George what he thought set Villa Maria apart from the rest and how they had managed to be so successful in a crowded field of brands. “Innovation and quality” was George’s reply. Villa Maria is one of the top 5 family owned wineries in New Zealand and George believes that the fact that it’s still family owned allows them to do things that wineries with shareholders just can’t do. For example, in 2001 when Villa Maria switched to all screwcaps, people thought that they were crazy, but they could do it because they had no one to answer to but themselves. As we now know, George was right in his decision to go all screwcap. Villa Maria also has the luxury of being able to do experimental plantings. They have a few hectares where they can plant basically whatever they want and see what happens. They are currently experimenting with verdelho, vermentino and arneis. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. George had brought along a sample of the arneis which we tried at the tasting and I have to say it was very good. It’s great to see a lesser known variety...

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Talking with Australian winemaker Brian Croser about his Tapanappa wines… (podcast)

Jul 16, 12 Talking with Australian winemaker Brian Croser about his Tapanappa wines… (podcast)

Posted by in Australia, Podcast

In this edition of  my podcast I had the pleasure of speaking with the legendary Australian winemaker, Brian Croser. Brian, as most of you probably know, started Petaluma Winery in the Adelaide Hills of South Australia in 1976 and sold it in 2001. However, selling Petaluma was a new start for Brian and his wine Anne and after the sale, they started a new label and called it Tappanapa. I had dinner with Brian and Anne at the Savoy Grill recently here in London where I asked Brain to explain Tappanapa and it’s wines and philosophy in a bit more detail. Brian talks about why he thinks terroir is most important when it comes to producing quality wines and why he thinks that the diurnal differential is a myth…. (Listen Here to) Australian wine maker Brian Croser …And that was the delightful Australian wine maker Brian Crozer talking about his wine label, Tapanappa. Thanks for  listening and if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below… Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Tiago Alves do Sousa, talking about the vineyards of the Douro Valley

[vodpod id=Groupvideo.11234640&w=450&h=325&fv=%26rel%3D0%26border%3D0%26] 1st collector for Tiago Alves do Sousa, talking about the vineyar…Follow my videos on vodpod Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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