Andrew Jefford

corkscrew

I haven’t yet dared post a Monday blog about bottle closures. Like ‘natural wine’, the subject rouses such strong, intransigent and forcefully prosecuted views that discussing it sometimes seems pointless.…

Children eating grapes

We’ve done our bit for the 2012 harvest. Virgile Joly, one of the Languedoc’s most convivial growers, organizes a ‘Journée Sécateurs’ every year for incompetent but wine-friendly families; he let…

parker

As we tasted our way through the submissions for Decanter’s Asia Wine Awards the week before last, a persistent rumour swirled around Hong Kong island. It hinted that Robert Parker…

Santo Stefano Belbo

As I took a few pictures (like the one below), I felt puzzled. I tasted some of the wines from these hillsides, and the puzzle deepened to intrigue. A few…

St Emilion

There will have been sighs of disappointment up and down the Rue des Frères Bonie in Bordeaux when the new St Emilion classification emerged on September 6th. The Richard Rogers-designed…

canada,

An unanticipated consequence of living in France is that I don’t seem to need wine retailers much any more. If I want to buy some wine from a particular producer…

Jefford snow, jefford, snow, snow vines, winter,

The last time I blind-tasted 35 top Australian Chardonnays, the wine which seemed to me to proclaim regional origins more clearly than any was the 2010 vintage of Penfold’s Bin…

Jefford on Monday

The scene: a special dinner. The company: wine lovers, gourmets. You’re seated next to other guests you know only fleetingly, if at all. The coming two or three hours will…

Racking -- La Mission Haut Brion

Oak, particularly new French oak, is the most expensive container you can choose in which to age your new wines. We've all damned wines for being over-oaked. "This wine needs…

englsih vines

Heavy industry, light industry, an industrial estate, industrial units, industrial output, the Department of Trade and Industry: have I got your attention? Are you feeling, um, excited? Are you panting…

Mount Everest

I wasn’t in Izmir in June, but I will be in November. It’s Turkey’s year on the wine world’s sorting table. The world’s fourth largest grape-growing nation is preparing to…

Cloudy sky, clouds, dark sky, sky,

What, exactly, has happened inside the heads of the UK’s wine purchasers? Something, it would seem, rather strange. Four years of financial crisis and an ever-accelerating tax take is having…

Perpignan

The world's greatest winemakers receive global adulation. A few wine writers aspire to that kind of celebrity. Wine photographers enjoy increasing recognition for their work. Who, though, can recite the…

Caroline Mooney

I have mixed feelings about social media. I remember watching a young Asian couple, out to dinner together in a top London restaurant a month or two ago. Except they…

Terrasses du Larzac

After an unusually grumpy spring, the Languedoc summer is beginning to surge. The bees are harrying the lavender; the nightingales have stopped singing, their marital arrangements concluded; linden trees spill…

Lafite flowering 2012

Bordeaux in the second week of June this year provided a compelling display of Atlantic moodiness. The clouds rolled in; the rain drummed down; proprietors averted their eyes as they…

Zelma Long

Fifty-five vintages bring a sense of perspective. That’s how many Californian winemaker Zelma Long has now overseen, principally in California, but latterly in South Africa, too, at the Vilafonté estate…

Rioja

It was one of those dreary, wet Saturdays in a wet, dreary month: the UK endured its soggiest April on record in 2012. Perfect lunching weather, in other words. I…

DWWA 2012

My favourite week of the year has come and gone. The Decanter World Wine Awards was as logistically dazzling as ever: at the same prearranged date, and at one small…

Maxime Double

Shortly after moving to France, I remember chatting to a Rhone wine producer about some minor issue, and hearing her say "Oui, mais on n'a pas le droit" (yes, but…

vines, wine, jefford, bandol,

We’ve probably all imagined the scene. That letter, one Thursday, from a strange provincial solicitor. The curious, dry phrasing, outlining the 'bequest' from the 'deceased', whose name means nothing to…

Riverina floods Australia

Who are the highest paid individuals in the wine world? It’s hard to winkle out information like this without a team of full-time researchers, but my guesses would include the…

Bruno Paumard of Hansen Organic Vineyards

In the same week that Decanter announced its Asia Wine Awards (I’m looking forward to tasting in Hong Kong in September), I found myself having an email conversation with a…

Terrace Heights Estate

John Forrest's February call for his fellow Marlborough growers to think about moving towards 'a self-enforced appellation system … with strict controls over yield and quality' broached a topic which,…

parker

Here's the plot. A forex day-trader with a Ferrari and a diamond stud in each ear happens to sit next to a printer from Maryland in a Washington DC bar.…