Opinion piece

WSET Level 3 Exam Tips

Tasting If you believe a wine is simple make sure you write the word “simple” in both the nose and palate sections, it’s worth a mark Ensure you comment on all aspects of palate – sweetness, acidity, alcohol, body, finish and flavour characteristics; create a mnemonic to ensure you remember them all SAABFF so you…

Read More

Extend your wine horizon beyond France

A lot of people in the UK buy French wine because they are familiar with the names and they are relatively easy to pronounce in restaurants (compared to, say Greek or German ones).  Because of this ready market much French wine can be rather over-priced, so here are some alternatives to try: Muscadet – a…

Read More

Current Situation

With no tastings or events possible for the last few months the recent Wine of the Month recommendations have had to be taken from my own personal consumption. The restrictions enforced on us in recent months have had a terrible impact on the hospitality industry and on everybody’s health, finances and quality of life. I…

Read More

Bordeaux 1855 Classification

As wine buffs will know, red wines of the Bordeaux left bank are classified into five levels – from first to fifth growths. The classification was introduced for the Universal Exposition in Paris and was based on the prices for which the wines were sold at that time. There was no tasting and even properties…

Read More

Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP)

Wales has joined Scotland in having a minimum unit price for alcohol of 50p per unit. Units are a simple way of expressing the quantity of pure alcohol in a drink. One unit equals 10ml or 8g of pure alcohol, which is around the amount of alcohol the average adult can process in an hour. This…

Read More

Good Old Sussex by the Sea

Great result for our local producers: England’s winemakers scooped 11 Gold, 50 Silver and 60 Bronze medals in the International Wine Challenge (IWC), placing it ninth in the medals table. Ten of England’s 11 Gold medals were awarded to sparkling wines. Sussex-based producers won seven of the 11 Golds. Nyetimber won three Gold medals, two…

Read More

Riesling – Germany takes a beating

A lot of people associate the Riesling grape with Germany, so the results of the recent Drinks Business Riesling Masters competition were very interesting.  In the dry wines category it was Australia’s Eden Valley and Clare Valley that took most of the awards across all price points.  In the medium category Canada’s Niagara Peninsula took…

Read More

Blind Tasting – Why?

The wine world seems to have something of an obsession with blind tasting – surely this is a fairly pointless skill.  In the real world when do you ever need to identify a wine blind?  The bottles have a nice helpful label on the front.  Sure, I can see the need to describe a wine…

Read More