En Primeur 2008 – What a Catastrophe!

After a good week in Bordeaux its now back to the real nub of the issue surrounding the success or failure of the 2008 vintage – the price!   The Chateaux Owners must be firstly congratulated on achieving a remarkable success with this vintage bearing in mind the inclement weather they had to contend with during … Read more

The World’s Oldest Wine Barrel

The world’s oldest giant wine barrel has been refilled for the first time in its 400-year history and will be filling glasses with red wine at a festival on 31st July and 1st August in the town of Halberstadt in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt. The oak barrel measures 5 metres in diameter and holds about … Read more

Beat the Credit Crunch With Your Christmas Turkey and Wine

According to the Daily Mail the credit crunch is having an effect on our Christmas turkey as Christmas turkeys will cost an astonishing £70 for a 22lb (10kg) bird this year – that’s 75% more than last year. However the British Turkey website says that the average weight of a Christmas turkey is 12lb (5.5kg) so the £70 headline … Read more

Olives and Wine

You can compare Olive Oil with wine. Its quality and taste is influenced by geographical factors such as soil and region, similar to the terroir in Bordeaux. You also have good and bad olive years, depending on the weather during a certain season. The quality depends much on the care of the growers and producers. There … Read more

Laurent Dassault to buy Chateau La Croix de Gay and La Fleur de Gay?

Jane Anson has reported on Decanter that aviation millionaire Laurent Dassault (the maker of Dassault Falcon business jets), owner of Chateau Dassault and Chateau La Fleur, has made an approach to purchase both Chateau La Croix de Gay and La Fleur de Gay from Dr Alain Raynaud.   Both Chateaux Dassault and La Fleur are located in Saint Emilion’ whereas Raynaud’s properties are in … Read more

La Fleur Morange Mathilde 2008

The 2008 harvest in Bordeaux will be another test of craftsmanship for the vintners with the late summer ripening the grapes right up to the last minute. Jean-Luc Thunevin (owner of Chateau Valandraud) told decanter that “If the weather continues like this for the next three weeks, we will be calling 2008 the miracle vintage”. Well, it’s 22ºC in … Read more

Bordeaux and California Harvest 2008

It looks as if both Bordeaux and California’s harvests are going to lower yielding this year after difficult growing conditions. The weather is to blame – both wine producing areas have suffered from frosts which have damaged the buds and caused uneven flowering. California has not had enough rain and Bordeaux has had too much at … Read more

Château Figeac

With the sad news of Thierry Manoncourt’s passing away last week I thought there could be no more a fitting tribute than to write about his château and the great wines he produced. Thierry Manoncourt took over the Saint Emilion First Growth Chateau Figeac in 1947 with his wife, Marie-France Duboys de Labarre. Figeac had been deserted by … Read more

Vineyards in USA Grow Marijuana

The Independent has reported that vineyards in America’s Washington state are being sold to grow Marijuana – a plant that could surpass grapes in value this year. For centuries farmers have replaced one crop with another as climate and its conditions have forced them to diversify. Last year I blogged about the American Mid West abandoning its grain crops … Read more

The Biggest Grapes in The World?

The Telegraph has reported on a newly developed grape variety which if it is not the biggest in the world – is definitely the most expensive. The tomato coloured Ruby Roman grapes took 14 years to develop in a state led project. A Japanese hotel manager paid £475 for the bunch of grapes at an auction in … Read more