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A sommelier speaks: Damien Bouancheau

Damien Bouancheau is head sommelier at The Goring, Beeston Place, Grosvenor Gardens, London, SW1W 0JW; Tel: +44 (0) 20 7396 9000; www.thegoring.com

What’s your top tip for wine lovers picking a wine from a restaurant list?

Don’t be scared to talk to the sommelier. There are so many wonderful wines in the world to discover and your sommelier is your compass – use him or her.

How much emphasis do you attach to food and wine matching?

A lot. I try and keep up to speed with our ever-changing menu. The game season requires our big full-bodied Burgundies, rich Clarets and strong Cabernet Sauvignon’s from the New World. During the summer I look for much lighter reds, crisp whites and perky pinks.

What region would you like to have more of on your list, and which region less? Why?

I recently changed some of the emphasis on our list. We beefed up our Australian and New Zealand offerings along with one or two other New World areas. The majority of our clients are quite traditional and tend to drink French wines, which we specialize in. This is fine with me, as I’m French!

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