Sunday, 19 December 2010

Viavino Wine Course Session Two

This Tuesday saw the second session of the Classic French Wine Regions wine tasting and education course I’m running.  The idea is to educate about the world of wine whilst also improving tasting skills.  In the first session we looked at Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, moving on this week

Friday, 10 December 2010

Grande Maison - A Great House in Monbazillac

Whilst in the Dordogne recently, I discovered a couple of domaines that I'm now a huge fan of.  One was Vignobles des Verdots, which I'll look at in another post, and the other was Grande Maison.

Darviot-Perrin Bourgogne Rouge 2007

I'm home alone tonight with some tasty left-over roast beef that I'm eating with a bottle of 2007 Bourgogne Rouge from Domaine Darviot-Perrin.  I'm so glad I popped the cork on this one tonight; it's simple, fresh, very tasty with lovely, crunchy red cherry fruit to the fore.  It's really long and very moreish.  It's a lovely straight-ahead Bourgogne Rouge that wants drinking now so you can enjoy it in its delicious youth before it closes us.  Get some if you can.

Domaine Darviot-Perrin Bourgogne Rouge 2007 - £12.74 from Howard Ripley

Viavino Wine Course Part One

This Tuesday marked the first session of the Classic French Wine Regions wine tasting and education course I'm running.  The idea is to educate about the world of wine whilst also improving tasting skills.  In the first session we looked at

Food and Wine Matching Dinner at Plateau




[caption id="attachment_530" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Plateau Private Dining Room"][/caption]

Recently I had the good fortune to be invited to Plateau Restaurant in Canary Wharf for a fine food and wine dinner.  The event showed off the skills of the acclaimed chef, Allan Pickett, pairing four courses against Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir wines, all from the same Producer, Henri Bourgeois.  It was an interesting concept, particularly as each course was comparing an old world example against a new, as Henri Bourgeouis are making wines in New Zealand as well as the Loire Valley.  The four courses the wines had to match up against were:

Viavino Wine Appreciation Course

This week heralded the start of a new wine appreciation course I'm running as part of my wine business, Viavino.  The course is a tour of the classic regions of France in six sessions. Each session looks at wines from the region or regions in question and compares them against examples made from the same grape varieties from around the world.


The course breaks down as follows:

Friday, 3 December 2010

Bourgeuil Yannick Amirault

Last night I had a rather good Daube de Boeuf Provençale accompanied by a terrific bottle of 2002 Bourgeuil Grand Clos, from the excellent producer Yannick Amirault.


Bourgeuil and its neighbouring appellation Chinon face each other across the Loire and both make red wines from Cabernet Franc.  The grape is better known as part of the classic Bordeaux blend, which is Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot in varying proportions.  However, its other homeland is about 300km north of Bordeaux in the central Loire valley where it makes lighter red wines that are usually drunk young but can also age really well.


This example from Yannick Amirault, although 8 years old, was in great shape.  Still plenty of guts and red brambly fruit but also more developed flavours reminiscent of mushrooms, spice and tobacco.  Long, complex and perfectly delicious with the beef casserole.


The central Loire is good hunting ground for some really interesting reds (the fantastic sweet whites are another story) that are far better value than wines of similar quality from Bordeaux or Burgundy.  Try one out.