If you’re a regular visitor to this site, you’ll know that I write an annual report on the wines of the Rhône Valley. It’s a huge region, split into various quality levels, from the regional AOC Côtes-du-Rhône, to AOC Côtes-du-Rhône-Villages, to AOC Côtes-du-Rhône-Villages with named village, then at the top are the Crus, such as […]
Today marks the publication of my top 300 Rhône wines of the 2016 vintage! Having whittled down my selection from nearly 1,500 wines tasted, it’s my most in-depth report to date and will be published this year by Decanter magazine. And what a vintage it is… Clearly one of the best years of […]
What does success look like for the UK’s best wine bloggers? Gaining ever more readers? An endless stream of free samples? Or perhaps earning money from advertising? It’s different for everyone, but for many wine bloggers it turns out that real success is signified by going on to do something other than blogging.
In the car park on my street there is a rose bush. Every so often when walking past I pause to cup one of the red flowers in my hand, bring it to my nose and inhale. The scent of a rose in bloom is as universal a pleasure as birdsong. So why are […]
Seems like summer’s still with us, at least for now – here’s an article I wrote for Decanter on red wines to chill:
Here’s an article that I wrote for Imbibe (drinks trade magazine) on New Zealand Pinot Noir…
If red Burgundy were a car, it would probably be a handsome vintage Jaguar. New Zealand Pinot, by contrast, would be a souped-up VW Golf: desirable yet affordable, built to perform – and it moves fast. Considering the quality of […]
Standing in his sun-drenched hallway, my friend and I stood before the newly-hung painting that he bought not long ago. “With a bit of luck, it might even go up in value,” he said, with an arched eyebrow. I couldn’t help but think of the altogether stranger investment of my wine collection.
It’s not […]
There’s so much to enjoy when you visit a restaurant: a friendly welcome, the convivial atmosphere, catching up with friends… then some smiling bastard hands you the wine list. Pages and pages of wines you’ve never heard of, at prices you’d baulk at in any shop, and it’s your job to pick one […]
Jean-Louis Chave makes some of the greatest wines in the Rhône. The Hermitage and Saint-Joseph he produces from his family estate are among the best of their respective appellations. Naturally this level of quality doesn’t come cheap, so they are a rare treat even to committed Rhône lovers like me.
Although he doesn’t […]
Which comes first: the celebrity chef’s animated persona or their success in television? Martin Lam has largely eschewed the media over his 45 years in the restaurant business. Perhaps it’s how he’s remained so down-to-earth; at 62, he has the affable but astute demeanour of a QC on his day off. Another consequence, however, […]
Shortlisted for The Louis Roederer International Wine Writers' Awards 2017 Food and Wine Writer of the Year
Shortlisted for the Born Digital Wine Awards 2016 Best Editorial/Opinion Wine Writing
Shortlisted for Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards 2016 Online Drink Writer
Winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2015 Blogger of the Year
Shortlisted for The Louis Roederer International Wine Writers' Awards 2015 Online Communicator
Runner Up in the Born Digital Wine Awards 2015 Best Editorial/Opinon Wine Writing
Shortlisted for Harpers Wine & Spirit French Wine Awards 2014 Best French Wine Writer/Critic
Shortlisted for International Wine & Spirit Competition 2014 Blogger of the Year
Shortlisted for International Wine & Spirit Competition 2013 Blogger of the Year
Off Licence News Top 25 Policy and Opinion Formers 2013
Winner of The Drinks Business Awards 2013 Communicator of the Year
Winner of Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards 2013 Newcomer of the Year
Shortlisted for International Wine & Spirit Competition 2012 Blogger of the Year
Matt Walls first got into wine working in an off-licence in Brighton. He has since worked for Bollinger Champagne and helped manage and buy wines for The Sampler, one of London's best wine shops. He now spends half his time writing about wine and the other half collaborating on various wine-related projects. His first book, Drink Me!, was recently published by Quadrille and has sold over 10,000 copies.
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- Vignoble du Rêveur 'Pierres Sauvages' Pinot d'Alsace 2013
This is made by Mathieu Deiss, grandson of the legendary Marcel Deiss of Alsace in north-east France - winemaking genius clearly runs in the family. It's produced from some small local vineyards he has recently bought and converted to biodynamics. The wine has no added sugar, acidity or yeasts and is bottled with minimal sulphur. It smells like the essence of fresh pear, with subtle honey aromas. It's just about dry, feels rich and full-bodied, then neatens up on the finish with well-judged acidity. It feels nourishing to drink, and has remarkable persistence of flavour. It’s £18 a bottle at Roberson, but is easily worth £25 for this kind of quality (click through).
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