Magazine article The Spectator

Spectator Wine

Magazine article The Spectator

Spectator Wine

Article excerpt

Last month we held a very pleasant tasting event in the Spectator office garden, which is not the size of Kew, but when the weather is fine makes a delightfully agreeable venue for such an event.

The wines were from FromVineyardsDirect, who are making the present offer, and they seemed to go down very well with the visitors.

Spectator subscribers are always welcome at these bashes, and you can find out what is going on through the website.

FVD have been going for only a short while, and are doing exceedingly well. This is partly because they go direct to the growers, and cut out middlemen; also it's because they don't need to buy complete ranges of particular wines. They can zoom in on one vintage or vineyard simply because they like what's in that bottle. The result is excellent wines at good prices. Some of these cost more than usual, but I've noticed that with FVD, readers tend to buy wines from the upper ranges, because they are superb value.

First there is the luscious Chateau Bauduc 2009 (1) of which they have sold more in the past three months than all white Bordeaux in the previous three years. It is the house white in all Gordon Ramsay's three-star restaurants. I'm not surprised. It tastes nice. (I have always wanted to write that, rather than banging on about nuances of elderberry and top notes of nutmeg. ) One reason may be that it contains a little more Semillon in the mix with Sauvignon Blanc, which gives it a richer, fleshier flavour. A very sophisticated wine at an excellent £8.95.

Soave is one of those Italian wines that can bring dread to anyone scanning a leatherbound menu. The word actually means 'suave' and may refer to the waiter, some - how subservient and condescending at the same time. Most Soave is churned out by co-ops, but not this 2010 Classico (2), made by Sergio and Graziano Pra, who have their name on the bottle. It is gorgeous, silky, layered with flavours, and wonderful drinking for £10. …

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