Blog Archives

The quickie

Past experience has taught me that a quickie is great but not the best. Today a quick run to Domaine de Saugourde allowed us to venture into Francois’s wineroom to sample a great simple but effective sweet wine from the Coteaux du Layon appellation. This appellation is the  all encompassing sweet AOC of the Anjou region. It has in its repertoire a complete range of sweets from just so to very very sweet and it all depends on the level of Noble Rot bacteria that attacks the grape in the Autumn. More about this again but Francois produces a simple ‘take me as you find me’ Layon which sits so well with a light dessert. Like tonight with our six guests over dinner the wine complemented the creme brulee brilliantly. Karin’s tart freshly picked blackcurrants and the sweet custard  with the caramelised  topping was so well balanced. All loved the pairing. Thanks Karin and Francois. Its available from Grainger Fine Wines at a decent price so why not try some now. Your Health.

London International Wine Fair

Further news to all our trade customers coming to see us at the LIWF. Philippe Porche of Domaine de Rocheville will be personally presenting his wines at the fair with us.

The wines he will be presenting are:

2010 Cabernet de Saumur AOC  ‘Le Troubadour’ pink

2008 and 2009 Saumur Champigny AOC  ‘Le Page’  red

2008 and 2009 Saumur Champigny AOC  ‘Le Prince’ red

2006 Saumur Champigny AOC ‘Le Roi’ red

2009 Saumur AOC  ‘La Dame’ white

Philippe has included consecutive vintages of the ‘Le Page’ and ‘Le Prince’ to allow comparison of the merits of each one. They are distinctive and there will be some who will prefer one to the other and visa verse which makes these wines so special and unique. There is no effort as in most other countries to try and make year on year bland similar vintages with no enjoyment or excitement. These will be tastings that will excite the wine connoisseur (and we believe our retail customers as well) and lead to some debate as to the merits of each vintage. That’s why these boutique winemakers are so damn good at making wine and in our view why the appellation system is also just as important. In each vintage the essence of the Saumur Champigny style is retained as the cornerstone of the appellation giving in each vintage the elegance of the wine as something to be savoured and enjoyed, and that is what Philippe has manged to accomplish very well indeed.

We look forward to meeting our customers and guests at the fair on the 17 to 19 May at ExCel. See you there.

The red sparkler was the talk of the show

Ben and Simon, the barmen! Our red sparkling wine went down a storm at LBWF last weekend. One Marylebone, a converted church, looked amazing. Our glass bar was amazing and showed off our wines to perfection. Simon, Ben and I, with the help of Wendy, served over 500 glasses. Fortunately, Rhubarb, the wedding and party caterers, supplied and washed the very elegant glasses. Many thanks to them.

Lots of visitors to our bar liked the medium dry red,  cuvee “Chateau de Chaintres” 2007, a Saumur Champigny AOC wine from Chateau de Chaintres, a natural accompaniment to red meats and game.  Also our lovely dry rosé from Domaine de Rocheville “Le Troubadour” 2009 a Cabernet de SaumurAOC wine, perfect with pork, poultry and cheeses. K

Mary Portas champions wines from out of the ordinary vineyards

Mary Portas is impressed with Waitrose in general but not with “the abysmal quality of the wine on offer.” We couldn’t agree more. We found just one Saumur Blanc AOC and one Saumur Rouge AOC at our local Waitrose branch and that was from a large wine Co-operative.  Mary says she doesn’t “want to see racks of Hardys, Banrock Station and Oxford Landing.” Rather she would like to see wines from “out of the ordinary, keenly priced vineyards.”

She has hit the nail on the head. We need to consider what is in the wine we are drinking and how it is made. There are great family run small independent winemakers in the loire valley who make natural wines, with no harmful chemicals. Lighter wines that taste naturally of fruit and the soil that don’t give you a headache. It is these wine that we should be drinking. I’m happy to say that we do and you could too. K

June 2018
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