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Wine Regions

Chablis

Chablis has always offered the best value for white wines in Burgundy but finding the quality and style desired is a little harder.  Traditionally Chablis has been seen as a specific style of Chardonnay that is recognisable thanks to the notes of flint, seashell and green apple it produces. This is mostly attributed to the cooler …

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Billaud Simon Chablis Vaillons

Sauternes

Tastes and fashions have changed considerably since the 19th century. Our penchant for sweet wines that were so revered 150 years ago has waned as has as our desire for the rich, heavy dishes that accompanied them. Gone are the days of foie gras and a glass of Yquem to start off your evening meal.  When …

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Sauternes_Château_d'Yquem_01

Barolo

Getting to know Barolo is akin to getting to grips with Burgundy these days. Every inch of land in this small area in Piedmont seems to have been given up to the vine and the talk of soil composition, aspect, altitude, modern vs. traditional dominates any conversation on the region. The myriad of single vineyards …

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Giovanni Canonica Cavour Barolo DOCG

South African Reds

South Africa was never top of my list of wine regions: over exposure to cheap, average white wines in my early drinking days and several experiences with poorly made Pinotage that tasted vaguely like old, rubber tyres cemented my feelings on the region for a while.   A chance encounter with a Hamilton Russell Chardonnay made …

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South Africa https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Etna Rosso

Sicily is hot, almost desert-like, with rainfall only making an appearance for a short time in winter. Despite this harsh climate it is a surprisingly rich and diverse island when it comes to agriculture. Citrus fruits, nuts, and grains flourish under the hot sun and the influence of its many occupiers has provided for a …

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Mount Etna

A Fine Balance

Although Châteauneuf-du-Pape is a household name, the wines are not always given the respect they deserve. In recent years, since wine prices have inflated because it has become an investment product, there has been much talk (and Hollywood films) about wine fraud but this is not a completely new phenomenon.  Fraud was a serious problem for …

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Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf du Pape

István Szepsy Tokaji

Tokaji has long been a family drinking favourite at Nemo but, despite our efforts we have rarely had any really good stock available for sale (perhaps we should drink less of it!). Hopefully this is now changing with a parcel of aged Tokaji and, we hope, a more regular supply of younger vintages from Tokaji’s premier producer.   István Szepsy probably makes …

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2002 Istvan Szepsy Tokaji Aszu 6 puttonyos

Bordeaux Architecture

There is little doubt that Bordeaux has some of the best and most expensive wines in the world. However, it is not the most scenic place to visit – somewhat flat and rather dull in parts it doesn’t offer a landscape that excites.  What it does offer though, is some of the most diverse and …

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Chateau Pedesclaux

2015 Bordeaux

2015 was a good year for most of the wine world but particularly for Bordeaux. It was sunny and warm and nearly everyone got the chance to make a decent wine from their crop. There are, of course, those wines that outshone others but it was most noticeably a year where producers we don’t tend …

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2015 Chateau Capbern Saint Estephe Cru Bourgeois

Mendoza

Argentina spent the majority of the 20th century shrouded in trouble and political instability. Despite having all the key elements to create a wine industry worthy of taking on the old establishment, investors never felt secure enough to really put the time and money into the areas that showed real potential.  However the 1990s saw a …

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Mendoza Vineyard

Cornas

Camping with small children is fairly torturous. After a week in a frequently rain soaked campsite in Brittany we were in dire need of some vestige of relaxation.  A brief trip into the local town gave us the chance to investigate the local wine merchants and we emerged (after the only 5 minutes the children …

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Rhone vineyards

Rioja

Reacquaint yourself with an old friend  There’s something comforting and familiar about Rioja. It’s like the old friend you perhaps don’t see very often but when you do it’s like old times. Whether you drink it regularly or not most people could happily come up with a couple of adjectives to describe Rioja that will …

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New World Wanderings

We don’t spend a huge amount of time in the New World; we have a tendency to gravitate towards France, Spain and Italy because most of what we know and like comes from there. But we would be doing ourselves and the wine world a disservice if we didn’t occasionally look outside of Europe. Argentina, …

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Brunello di Montalcino

A classic Italian wine that has all the attributes one would expect from this part of the world – big, bold and comes with its very own scandal. Brunello di Montalcino is made from a strain of Sangiovese that was a localised clone recognised as such in the late 1800’s. It gained DOCG status in …

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Montalcino

Pessac-Leognan

Is there value to be found in Bordeaux? This is a question that gets asked frequently and answered in a myriad of ways. But it is not a question that should be asked in such broad terms: Bordeaux produces an incomprehensible amount of wine, some good, some great, some terrible. Its many tiers of quality, …

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Chateau Pape Clement Pessac Leognan Grand Cru Classe

Côte Rôtie: Syrah’s Delicate Incarnation

A description some may find odd as Syrah is known for its meaty, spicy red wines that can sometimes bowl you over with smoke and pepper. However, Côte Rôtie in the Northern Rhône produces a softer more delicate incarnation of Syrah with a perfumed and floral nose. Traditionally the difference has always been put down to the inclusion …

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E. Guigal La Turque Cote Rotie

California ABC

California and Cabernet go hand in hand: Screaming Eagle, Harlan Estate, Scarecrow are all top producers that have been in pursuit of perfection for many a decade now and, for some, they achieve it. As wonderful as they may be, one cannot survive on £3,000 bottles of wine. Our daily rations must come cheaper and …

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California vineyard

Demystifying Burgundy

They say it takes a lifetime to really “know” Burgundy which is rather unhelpful. Most of us have about 5 minutes of head space per day to think about something as frivolous as wine. The good news is that they’re wrong. Those in the “know” might like to think that only they hold the secrets but …

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Burgundy Shield

South Australia

South Australia has the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to wine and if you’re not careful you can easily find yourself drinking overpriced and average plonk. But it is also a place where serious winemakers have gone to make seriously top class wines. There are also plenty of them, so, instead of listing them all, …

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Barossa Valley

Piedmont

Piedmont seems to bring out the poet in people – paragraph upon paragraph is written about the scenery and its endless gastronomic offerings, wine included. It is a beautiful part of the world and the Piedmontese certainly know a thing or two about good food, wine and generous hospitality. If you find yourself in a little …

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Gaja, Piedmont

Super Tuscans

London Wine Fair week tends to produce a large number of hangovers by 4pm. Luckily I did my homework and tactically manoeuvred my way around the very large and very packed exhibition centre to the tastings I thought would offer the most insight. There was a good tasting of artisan Champagnes; and an excellent one …

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Sassicaia

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