FRONT PAGE NEWSThe England team aren't the only ones in the papers for delivering quality in the box this week...
'Posh wine in a box' screamed the banner on the front page of The Daily Telegraph last Saturday. Across the country people dropped their crumpets, ignored the looming CO2 crisis and Andy Murray's latest woes, and shot straight to the Food and Drink section to see what the real news was about.
'looks like these guys have cracked bag-in-box wine for the 21st century'
'like something you might order by the glass in a swishy restaurant'
'there wasn't a duffer among the 11 wines I tasted'
Thanks to Victoria Moore for a lovely article - for the full feature see here.
CURRENT AFFAIRS - What a Hullabaloo
Hinton Hullabaloo - A fantastic family festival in a beautiful setting. Thank you to everyone who came along and tried our wines.
ENVY Post Production - Watching England lose to Belgium was made more bearable by the good company at Envy Post Production. They fired up the BBQ on their swanky central London rooftop terrace and bar, and we supplied the wines. A great night of food, football and some monstrously competitive table tennis. Thanks for having us.
World Cup quarter final teams and their wines, obvs
- Uruguay - Better known for seriously good beef and legalising cannabis, 'The Orient Republic of Uruguay' is also well worth watching for their wines. The national grape is Tannat - elsewhere known for gripping tannins, here they make a softer and easier to get along with style. Recent government investment in 'wine traceability tech', and a strong belief in a low intervention approach to agriculture means the quality will continue to improve.
- France - Make quite a lot of wine. Quality varies from top notch to pretty average.
- Brazil - 3rd biggest wine producer in South America. A little behind their neighbours, but attracting investment nonetheless. Some interesting wines in the higher altitude and cooler climate regions, but large swathes of the country are up against it due to tropical climates.
- Belgium - Smallest nation with recognised wine growing regions. Output is small and limited to specialist white and sparkling wines. The winemaking here is often in sheltered micro-climates and can achieve some quality. But they're still better known for strong beer... and Poirot.
- Sweden - A newish winemaking country. It's pretty hard to grow wine here due to the cold, but thanks to climate change this is becoming a little easier. Think England 15-20 years ago (that's what the Swedes say anyway). Whether they can replicate the successes remains to be seen.
- England - A success story. Unless you've been asleep for the past ten years you might have noticed the increasing number of English wines on the shelves in the UK. For good reason - increasing temperatures, investment, great terroirs and passion have created some of the finest sparkling wines around, followed not far behind by some decent whites. The Welsh are in on it too...
- Russia - The memory of mass produced Soviet wine has made it hard for Russian winemakers to gain a foothold at home, let alone abroad. Despite investment and improving quality a lack of organisation and regulation continues to hold them back. Other ex-bloc countries such as Georgia and Hungary have been quicker to adapt and resuscitate their winemaking traditions.
- Croatia - There is a growing fan-base for Croatian wines. From Rieslings to Graševinas there are some nice wines to be found. Best enjoyed with the backdrop of the beautiful Dalmatian coast.
What does this tell us about the World Cup? Not a lot really, but we'll be watching along with the rest of the country.