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    Richard Siddle
    Tasting: Wine

    The 12 best new Ribera del Duero wines that you need to be aware of

    Ask a Spaniard where the best quality Spanish wines come from and the answer will be twofold – Rioja and Ribera del Duero. In the UK, however, Ribera wines are much less well known than Rioja even though their best wines are on an equal footing. Fresh from a recent tour of the region Peter Dean shares with us the wines he discovered on his trip – some very well known and others that are hidden gems ripe for being discovered by wine buyers everywhere. They are a ‘Duero Dozen’ that reflects, in a good way, how the wine styles here are changing for the better.

    People: Producer

    Geoffrey Dean: How Australia’s McGuigan Wines got its mojo back

    When Australian wine started to lose its mojo 15-20 years ago, Neil McGuigan, who has just departed as CEO of Australian Vintage Ltd, decided to do something about it. He felt that going back to basics and over-delivering at every price point was the route forwards – and using the size of the company to its advantage. Every year, for example, he holds back 500-1000 cases of many of his wines so he can deliver them to the trade ready-aged, the company has a major innovation programme and sees international awards as a key component. Geoffrey Dean caught up with McGuigan over a tasting of four vintages each of the McGuigan Shortlist Riesling and McGuigan Bin 9000 Semillon

    People People: Producer
    gallo edouard baijot

    Edouard Baijot MW on redefining E&J Gallo’s super premium wine range

    “We think differently from our competitors,” is how Edouard Baijot MW sums up E&J Gallo’s commitment to transforming its super premium wine portfolio that has seen it spend over $1bn in the last five years alone on acquiring new wineries and brands. The key for Gallo when it comes to super premium wines is control. Which means being able to manage every step of the winemaking process – from grape to glass. It now means at last 70% of its revenue now comes from brands that did not exist in Gallo 15 years ago and 40% with brands it did not have 10 years ago. Here Baijot sets out the strategy that has redefined its super premium wine offer.

    Taras Ochota takes his winemaking far more seriously than he might appear. Picture Peter Ranscombe

    Peter Ranscombe: hot winemakers fly the flag for Australia’s cool climates

    Forget the Robert Parker-influenced over-oaked and over-ripe monsters of the 1980s and 1990s, Australia is now producing fresh reds and crisp whites to match its coastal cuisine. Its new breed of winemakers and producers that are appearing in all its major wine producing regions may have finally won wine writer and critic, Peter Ranscombe, over to the so called ‘natural wine’ category following his recent tour of the country’s cooler climates.

    Tasting: Wine

    Why Gigondas 2017 & 16 should be on every wine lover’s radar

    A recent extensive tasting of Gigondas wines, mostly from the 2017 and 2016 vintages, showcases the consistently high quality of these wines, typified by classic southern Rhône garrigue notes, freshness, generous fruit intensity and a balanced structure. Rhône expert Bart Feys puts this exclusive Buyer tasting into perspective by first looking at the geology and history of the region and then picking out the top Gigondas from 2016 and 2017 vintages, plus a few other gems that prove why these wines should be on every wine lover’s radar. Because of their consistently impressive range, Feys also focuses on two exemplary domaines Domaine des Bosquets and Chateau Saint Cosme.

    club oenologique 3

    Job Opportunity: Head of Content for IWSC & Club Oenologique

    Here’s a great opportunity for a creative, dynamic and ambitious writer, journalist or editor to join the Conversion Group and be part of the exciting changes taking places as part of the growth and expansion of the International Wine & Spirit Competition and its increasingly wide ranging publishing material, headed up by the launch of the breakthrough publication, Club Oenologique. It is looking for a Head of Content to head up the new editorial strategy. Here’s what they are looking for.

    People People: Supplier
    Spurrier hopes to give a platform and build a community for new and established writers

    Big changes to IWSC sees Steven Spurrier join new judging set up

    A fortnight on from its awards banquet at the Guildhall in London, the International Wine & Spirit competition is open for entries again for next year’s event as it announces a series of changes to its judging process and line-up of key judges, including the news that Steven Spurrier is to be honorary chair of the IWSC. Richard Siddle looks into what other big steps the IWSC is taking to shake up and improve further how it awards and picks out its winning wines and spirits.

    People: On-Trade
    Bourgogne Week 2020

    Bourgogne Week 2020: Flint Wines’ gives the inside track

    Look for a good grower, look for a top vintage and look out especially for Bourgogne Côte d’Or and Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Nuits as they offer impressive value for money, says Flint Wines. Many more good tipsin this second part of a series in which The Buyer is interviewing a number of leading fine wine merchants to get their feel on how this vital region is doing and what the 2020 has in store when the annual Bourgogne campaign comes to a head with Bourgogne Week.

    bulk tasting

    WBWE 2019: How Argentina is setting global wine pricing

    If you have never been to the World Bulk Wine Exhibition then you should. Particularly if you are involved in buying and selling wine at any level. This is where the world’s biggest and most influential buyers and producers get down to the business. It’s where the talk is of dollars, euros and the price per litre, rather than terroir and a sense of place. But country and region is still essential, particularly if you have wine to sell at a price buyers want. Richard Siddle had a ringside seat to see which wines and countries were most in demand.

    Tasting: Wine

    The wizardry of Bodega Norton and its expressions of Malbec

    The rare opportunity of tasting the 1974 Bodega Norton Malbec, one of the few bottles left in existence, was one of the many draws to a tasting lunch hosted by Norton winemaker David Bonomi. A wine older than scribe Chris Wilson – but had it aged as well? Also on offer was the new 2017 vintages of the Finca Perdriel and Altura but it was the 2015 Privada and Lote Agrelo wines that really turned Wilson’s head – that, and a chance to enter the Hogwarts-like Gothic St Pancras Tower.