here comes the sun

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single woman in possession of a good fortune, must be in need of more wine. In a pinch, a half-decent fortune will do. Or in times of great need any spare change in the wallet will suffice. You know, whatever is available can always be converted, magically, into a bottle of ambrosia. With the change in seasons – a whopping 22°C (or 72°f) this weekend – I’ve been on the hunt for lighter reds and more whites. Fortunately both temperature and opportunity conspire fortuitously to bring Alsace to the Médoc, in the form of a visit by Becker wines – the same that seem to keep cropping up in my blog and on my wine shelf – and otherwise an outdoorsy weekend in the sun.

Scenes around Bordeaux: my morning run to the river; sheep safely graze on campus, an old Romanesque church in Moulis-en-Médoc glistens in the sun. The Garonne River mirrors the lights from Place de la Bourse. And is that a giant sundial or the helical obelisk in Place de la Victoire? What time is it...? Time for a drink!

Scenes around Bordeaux: my morning run to the river; sheep may safely graze on campus, an old Romanesque church in Moulis-en-Médoc glistens in the sun. The Garonne River mirrors the lights from Place de la Bourse. And is that a giant sundial or the helical obelisk in Place de la Victoire – what time is it, you ask…? Time for a drink!

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game of rhônes

I’m in a race. Not a foot race….pffft. (I can’t seem to get past the carb-loading part.) It’s on a wine app I discovered almost two years ago. Vivino lets me keep track of wines I’ve tasted, by rating and reviewing them. Some people can remember tastes and smells easily (I’m not one of them), so this tool helps me keep track of what I’ve tried, and prompts my own sensory memories with my notes. I made the mistake of introducing this app to my original wine mentor, and though I had a year head-start on him, he’s rapidly closing the gap on me, while I’m scrambling to stay ahead of him. This wine tasting thing is getting cut-throat!

Vivino2

Like any good aunt, I’m starting my nephew young. And Philippe’s ranking is already out of date….now somewhere in the 280s, he’s catching up fast. Quick… fetch me some wine!

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reign of terroir

It is terroir week; a week for industry professionals to join us in the classroom for an intensive module on the concept of terroir-winemaking: the interactions of the vine with climate, soil, water, nitrogen, rootstocks, etc. and their impact on our ability to make good wine.

I took this sole picture of Green Park in London, and felt it summed up enough.

I took one picture of Green Park, and felt it summed up London terroir fairly well.

I, holy terroir of a student that I am, decide to take off to the UK for a day to participate in the Davy‘s portfolio tastings. Davy’s Wine Merchants are a family-owned, fifth generation, importer/distributor/wine bar and wine shop group based in London. I’ve mentioned them briefly before: I’m connected through a good friend who works there (also responsible for my initial introduction to the Becker wines from the last post), and have had the opportunity to meet with several of the producers in Europe with whom they work. As I’m busy pouring wines (mostly for other people, even!), I somehow manage to pass the entire day without taking a single photo of the event. Instead, I’ll take this opportunity to dig up stories and tasting memories about the wines in their native habitats; isn’t that the essence of terroir, after all? Read More

here’s looking at you, alsace

“It’s possible that I have some control issues…” I begin saying, but my friend’s chuckles cut me off before I can finish the thought …after nine years of being a project manager… Dammit. OK, there’s probably some truth in that, particularly as I’m determined to write about the past week in chronological order, even though the bits at the beginning of the week are suspiciously blurry. After three days in Alsace, stumbling about in a food-and-drink stupor, you’ll understand why I leave you with mostly pictures for this post. Apologies for the brevity of this post (though 1000 words x # pictures… surely counts for something?), but it’s another busy week which I’ll get to in the next post (coming soon, as there was too much to put into one entry). Read More