Winefriend by David Way

Writing about the wines of Piemonte, Italy and France

Northern Rhône

The wines of the Northern Rhône

Syrah spectacular

I have only recently come to realise how much I love Syrah as a wine. It has now joined my personal pantheon of Nebbiolo, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese (and quite a few other tannic Italian varieties) and the very best examples of Chardonnay, roughly in that order.   These are the varieties I want to cellar

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La Trompette

Five courses, four groups of wines at La Trompette

Monday’s nights can be special nights.  This last Monday Janet and I joined eight others in a ‘Michelin madness’ dinner at which we all provided the wines while enjoying the very good cooking – and arresting artwork – at La Trompette in Chiswick.  Five fine courses, four groups of wines – Champagne, whites, reds and

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Line up

Final week before MW exams

MW exams loom. What does the MW student do in the final week before re-sitting the tasting exam?  Three papers of two hours and 15 minutes each, 36 wines in total to be discussed in detail, all served blind.  The task is to discuss their origin, the varieties they are made from, how they were made,

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La Chapelle 2

Grand Syrah tasting

In June 2016 Andover Wine Friends were treated to a great line up of single varietal Syrah wines.  It was fairly comprehensive (with apologies to N America) and showed what good  wines are being made a range of price levels.  We finished the evening with two older wines, one of them truly outstanding.  I tasted

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Rhone again

The Rhône valley has been our wine region of choice in 2013.  Overton’s blind tasting group has chosen it no fewer than four times in the last year. Clearly we can’t get enough of it as this week’s tasting – north and south, white and red – was a great success.  As it turned out

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White Rhône

The Overton BBC followed up its recent north and south Rhône tasting with a white Rhône evening.  But we started with a very welcome interloper brought by one member who generously contributed a bottle of Krug Grande Cuvée Brut to start the evening off.  Some rules are made to be broken!  It’s not from the

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North or south?

Getting a grip on the Rhône

Overton’s blind tasting group themed tasting this month was quite simply Rhône reds. Between us, we managed – without any conferring – to bring 10 different appellations, five from the north and five from the south.  Out first challenge was to identify whether the first flight of five wines was northern or southern. Mercifully there

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Rhône varieties – home and away

Following last month’s highly successful tasting on Bordeaux varieties in search of sunshine, this month’s fine wine supper focused on the Rhône varieties.  In fact, this turned out to be too big a subject matter, but we had such great wines from the northern Rhône that it became a matter of ‘home and away’.  The

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Table 1

Art of fine living at the Harrow

February’s meeting of Andover Wine Friends was a spectacular lunch at The Harrow Inn, Little Bedwyn.  They put on a great show for 17 of us, while running the front half of the restaurant as usual.  I was seriously off duty – too much good food, company and excellent wines – so there are no

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Birthday bubbles, streams of Syrah

One birthday at the Overton blind tasting group, marked by the last of three bottles of a special wine. Lively, bubbles, youngish tasting bright fruit, mild nuttiness, noticeable acidity, balanced and attractive – but not really giving its origins away.  One member in the group in the trade thought it was very, very good Cava

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