If you like Sauvignon Blanc, you’ll love Marlborough in New Zealand. Of its 22,903 hectares of vineyards, 19,639 of them are planted with it. Undoubtedly this feels like an awful lot of eggs in one basket for local winemakers, so no wonder some are experimenting to see what else Marlborough can do. Could [...]
After sketching out portraits of over 30 different French wine regions for my Living France magazine column, we’ve decided to change the format to something new. Now I’ll be matching three different wines to a specific dish instead, with classic recipes provided by food writer Louise Pickford. [...]
“Sorry I’m late sir. Ignore the bandage, I had an unexpected visit to the hospital to get my ear seen to. Anyway – I understand you’d like me to paint your sunflowers… So, oil paint or watercolours? And how would you like them arranged – a bunch or just the one? [...]
Chinon straddles the Vienne, a small tributary to the south of the Loire between Saumur and Tours. It’s pretty in parts; rolling wooded hills, sunflowers, birdsong. The unassuming landscape doesn’t declare its potential like the more dramatic wine regions of France. However to notice a bottle of Chinon in a friend’s wine rack is to [...]
Sometimes it takes events like the Scottish Referendum to make you realise that however ancient and permanent the old order appears, the status quo could suddenly change. It’s no different in the world of wine: in fact, there’s one anomaly that I’ve been increasingly aware of recently. South Africa [...]
Syrah is a versatile grape. At one end of the scale, it can make light, fresh, quaffable tonics, bright purple, scented with violets and tasting of blackberries. Cornas, however, lies at the other extreme. These are mightily powerful, black wines of thunderous intensity. It’s a storm surge in a bottle.
This tiny appellation lies [...]
I spend one month every year compiling my annual Rhône Report, so it’s always a great feeling when it’s finished and ready to read. I hope it’s fair to say that it’s the most useful and most readable guide to the new vintage that money can buy. You can download a copy here: http://www.timatkin.com/reports/2013-rhone-special-report
Since I spend [...]
Like a weathered George Michael cynically observing a shiny young Justin Bieber, Muscadet must be thinking to itself ‘been there, done that’. After its 1980s heyday of wild success, Muscadet has seen some hard times, but young upstart Picpoul de Pinet seems to have everything going for it. In many ways, however, they [...]
Fruits, herbs and spices are fairly common, but can you detect minerals in a wine? Certain individuals pick up aromas associated with rocks like struck flint or chalk dust; others, the smell of seashells. Some drinkers perceive a kind of saltiness on the tongue. It appears to be a more widespread phenomenon [...]
What do you feel like drinking tonight? Red or white? Still or sparkling? Dry or sweet? With an endless number of wines in countless styles to choose from, it’s necessary to segment this unwieldy mass to help yourself (or someone else) make a choice. But as the world of [...]
Shortlisted for Harpers Wine & Spirit French Wine Awards Best French Wine Writer/Critic 2014
Shortlisted for International Wine & Spirit Competition Blogger of the Year 2014
Shortlisted for International Wine & Spirit Competition Blogger of the Year 2013
Off Licence News Top 25 Policy and Opinion Formers 2013
Winner of The Drinks Business Awards Communicator of the Year 2013
Winner of Fortnum & Mason Food & Drink Awards Newcomer of the Year 2013
Shortlisted for International Wine & Spirit Competition Blogger of the Year 2012
Matt Walls is part of a new generation of modern young wine writers who are more interested in mind-blowing flavour than etiquette. Having first got into wine working in off-licenses in Brighton, he has since worked for Bollinger Champagne and helped manage and buy wines for The Sampler, a wine shop in London where you can try the wines before you buy. He is a judge for three international wine competitions, and his first book has just been published by Quadrille – Drink Me! How to choose, taste and enjoy wine. He works as a freelance writer and consultant and is based in London.
From time to time I put on various types of wine events; some are free, otherwise cheap, mostly in London. If you want to be added to the mailing list just send an email to mw(at)mattwalls.co.uk. No wine knowledge or experience required - just a thirst for something interesting.
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