Ricasoli's Birthday Party
 June 15th 2013
Just before Vinexpo I was in Tuscany for Francesco Ricasoli's '20th anniversary'. Better put, he celebrated with his friends, employees and neighbours having brought Castello di Brolio back into the family fold two decades ago. Although he has invested a fortune in renovating the property        read more

Francesco Ricasoli's Birthday Cake for the 20th Anniversary
Old Rebholz for Beginners
 June 12th 2013 20:47
Before I left for Italy, Hanjörg Rebholz invited Jürgen Mathäss and me to a little dinner out of doors during which he pulled - amongst a number of foreign bottles - three from his own cellar: a 1991 Im Sonnenschein Muskateller Kabinett trocken, a 1990 Spätburgunder in magnum and        read more

Hansjörg Rebholz in Siebeldingen
An Ode to Costanti
 June 6th 2013 19:24
This was not a tasting that I've done often nor will probably ever do again, forty vintages of Costanti's Brunello di Montalcino back to 1967 at the Summa 2013. Andreas Costanti spoke about the estate, the weather patterns of each year and the character of the individual        read more

Forty vintages of Costanti's Brunello di Montalcino
Alive with the Sound of Music
 June 4th 2013 22.14
A nobel swarm of the southern Palatinate's finest producers showed their new vintage at the Frank Loeb House in Landau this past weekend. Amongst others, this one of the events that kicks off our tastings of of the 2012s in the Pfalz for Gault Millau. It is generally an         read more

Volker Gies from Gies-Düppel in Birkweiler
Buying Wine in Shanghai
 June 1st 2013 23.12
On my last day in Shanghai, I had the opportunity to visit both ASC's fabulous new Wine Residence and Summergate's Pudao, which means grape. Each is meant to provide consumers a better understand of the wines they import, with at each outlet a large selection of         read more

Marcus Ford at Pudao in Shanghai
Chantal on Wine
 May 30th 2013 17.17
After taking possession of my new flat in Shanghai yesterday, I had tea with Chung Chan (Chantal) Chi, one of China's few truly independent wine writers. Although she originally hails from Taipei, she has been living here for years and was the original editor of the Wine Press        read more

Chung Chan (Chantal) Chi
350,000 Readers?
 May 29th 2013 15.17
I had lunch today at Heng Yue Xuan near the Xu Jia Hui Gardens in Shanghai with Martin Hao, pictured here, and Paris Zhang from Wine Press, my publishers in China. With 350,000 readers, they are arguably the mostly widely circulated wine publication in China...and not far        read more

Martin Hao, the chief editor of China's Wine Press
In the Shadow of Annunziata
 May 15th 2013 21.39
Although Renato Ratti was a seminal figure behind the development of single vineyard concepts in Piedmont, and the architect of one of the most famous classifications of its finest sites, I have always had an ambivalent impression of the estate's won wines. Today, his son Pietro is        read more

Pietro Ratti from l'Annunziata
Barking Behind Barolo
 May 14th 2013 19.42
Since he finished his apprenticeship with Roberto Voerzio, Enzo Boglietti has gradually become a respected winemaker in his own right. Always as interested in a good coffee or funny joke as in just 'another' Barolo, it is not unusual to see one of his dogs follow        read more

Enzo Boglietti from La Morra
A New Face at Bruno Giacosa
 May 13th 2013 21.47
Few who follow Piedmont with passion have not been marked by a given wine or two from Bruno Giacosa. For me it was a 1974 Barolo that first turned my head. More recently, the 2000 and 2001 Riserva Rocche del Falletto were near perfection. Never wild or wooly like his counterparts Elio         read more

Francesco Versio is the new winemaker at Bruno Giacosa
A Tribute to Mature Dolcetto
 May 12th 2013 09.18
Alberto di Gresy was  a generous host last night, pulling a few unusual wines from his private cellar for dinner. The most surprising was a 1996 Dolcetto d'Alba Monte Aribaldo. Although I have always been a tad more drawn to delicate Dolcetto than Barbera, I had never had the opportunity to taste a mature        read more

Marchesi Alberto di Gresy
Ten Years After
 May 1st 2013 23.59
Over the past week, we revisited several selections of of our favourite 2003s in an annual ritual that we call 'Ten Years After'. The vintage was originally considered 'too hot' by many, including myself, and we did see several Pinot Noir sporting 16% alcohol, but there were more pleasant surprises        read more

Hanno Zilliken
Through the Glass Lightly
 April 28th 2013 10.12
The cellars of Joseph Drouhin in the heart of Beaune are some of Burgundy's most stately, as are often the wines. Long so elegant that they sometimes appeared light, they were excellent in generous vintages and occasionally a tad thin in more difficult years. The last few vintages, though, have shown, albeit still        read more

Veronique Drouhin
Frédéric Barnier follows in Jacques Lardière's Footsteps
 April 26th 2013 8.14
You needn't spend long in Burgundy to hear harrowing tales of what went wrong in 2012. It was a text book vintage of what no producer wants to see, from peronospora to frost, from oidium to hail and from heat spikes to unneeded rain. In parts of Volnay, Pommard and Meursault, yields were below ten        read more

Frédéric Barnier has followed Jacques Lardière as the chief winemaker at Louis Jadot
Not Alain but Philippe Prost in the Pole Position
 April 24th 2013 21.48
During my short stay in Burgundy for the inauguration of the new cooperage of Taransaud, I also stopped to taste two recent vintages with Philippe Prost, who has now been with Bouchard Père & Fils for 35 year. Although they have been producing their wines at a new, gravity integrated         read more

Philippe Prost makes the wines for Bouchard Père & Fils
On Wine and Barrels
 April 21st 2013 10.17
Faiveley is where my research on wood - and coopers - began a couple of years ago. That first experience left me shocked. At the end of the tasting I was able recognise the flavour profile of the individual barrel maker easier than that of the site. Yesterday, I returned to taste        read more

Bernard Hervet is the Managing Director of Faiveley
More to Life than Riesling?
 March 29th 2013 09.37
I did a seminar on German wines for 28 sommeliers at the Wine & Spirits Academy in Seoul last night and then had a late dinner at Vin-Ga with Hyuck Kim, who runs the wine bar pictured here as part of the same Podo Plaza concept. Podo, like Putao in Chinese or Budo in Japanese, means        read more

Vin Ga in Seoul
Too many Wine Fairs?
 March 27th 2013 20.45
ProWein continues to expand its footprint. This past weekend was the 19th edition of the fair in Düsseldorf, featuring 4,783 exhibitors from 48 countries, almost 500 more than last year. In particular, the New World presence continues to grow. Among the 44,000 visitors, up ten percent from        read more

ProWein waves its flag
Twelve 2008 Merlot at Logonovo
 February 28th 2013 22.13
A number of the journalists on tour were invited by Marco Keller to taste his first vintage of Merlot at Logonovo, an old house on a hilltop that he purchased on the slopes above Castelgiocondo in Montalcino years ago. To prove his mettle, he chose to show twelve 2008s, all Merlot, from        read more

Logonovo in Montalcino
Mature Sangiovese
 February 22nd 2013 19.42
A number of estates in Tuscany have learned that part of their perceived value is being able to open mature bottles that still shine. Unfortunately, that does not always work as planned. Attempts at both Contucci in Montepulciano and Casanova di Neri in Montalcino left more question marks than answers on        read more

Maurizio Castelli is the consulting winemaker at Boscarelli

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