Wine Education

BYO Podcast Episodes

12 March 2018 by Alex

Our podcast ‘Bring Your Own’ is going from strength to strength with a great new episode every month. In order to keep you up to date with everything that’s happening in the world of BYO we have created this treasure trove of episodes, below you will find links to all available episodes on YouTube starting with the most recent. Check back here monthly for your latest update!

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A Once in a Lifetime Tasting: Miani

23 February 2018 by Alex

Miani Corks

TDrops of Godhe term “icon” is often abused in the wine world, a designation too hastily assigned to any estate which receives the slightest acclaim. But when it comes to the wines of Miani, the label doesn’t quite do justice to the profound wines from the estate. Perhaps Miani’s inclusion in the wine-focused graphic novel series “Drops of God” delivers a more fitting tribute to these unique wines.

Enzo Cellar

Enzo Pontoni at work

Reclusive winemaker Enzo Pontoni in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region is truly one of the greatest in Italy. Unfortunately, his fiercely uncompromising approach to quality in the vineyards and cellars ensures that there is never enough wine to go around, but we have secured excellent allocations of a wide range of his wines this year. In order to give as many people as possible a chance to experience these beautiful creations we decided to host an unprecedented tasting in the Chiswick store showcasing a wide range of Enzo’s wines. Bruno Besa, an expert on Enzo’s wines who has been working with him for almost 20 years joined us for this tasting. Despite having visited Enzo in his winery almost every year for the last 20 years, Bruno remarked that he had never tasted so many Miani wines from bottle at once. We were lucky to have Bruno on hand to share an unparalleled level of insight into what makes these wines so special.

The Miani wines are becoming more sought after every year, and it is very unlikely that the opportunity to put on this tasting will ever arise again. We have a precious few Miani wines still in stock at the time of this article, click here to browse them online, although they may not be there for long!

Below are details of what we tasted on the night:

Sauvignon Zitelle Alto 2015 & Sauvignon Zitelle Cava – these two expressions of Sauvignon Blanc are from a single vineyard (‘Le Zitelle’ means spinsters in English) that Enzo acquired in 2006 and completely replanted – his grandfather had made some of the original plantings here many years ago so this site Miani Chardonnay Webhas a special place in Enzo’s heart. The vines are just becoming old enough to produce wines that live up to Enzo’s high standards and these are the first releases of Sauvignon Blanc from here. The Cava Sauvignon is from a section of very poor soils that give an extra-concentrated wine show very dense, exotic flavours and deep minerality. The Alto is more aromatic and expressive at the moment with great purity.

Ribolla Gialla Pettarin 2016 & Friulano Filip 2016 – these individual vineyard expressions of the two greatest Friulian white grapes are named after the families that farmed them in years past. These two wines are the most sought after whites in the Miani stable. The Ribolla is delicate, fresh, and floral but with impressive density and texture. The Friulano is an incredibly intense wine, with masses of structure for a white wine: everything is here from acidity and richness of texture to extremely intense exotic fruit and minerality.

Chardonnay Palis 2015 – a new wine from the 2015 vintage onwards, this rich but mineral single vineyard Chardonnay is a future classic. Compared to many other Chardonnays this has a wonderfully ethereal, delicate character – there’s an almost playful feel to the wine. At the same time there is a hint of seriousness and the promise of future development.

Miani Rosso 2013 – a blend of Merlot and Refosco from a spectacular vintage, the Refosco comes from younger vines in a new, very exciting Refosco vineyard which will be bottled separately in future vintages when the vines are mature. This shows a lot of the richness, brightness, and concentration of the two single vineyard Merlots but with some beguiling herbal and earthy character coming from the Refosco. This is a slightly lighter weight red for Miani, but no less enticing because of it.miani-rosso-web

Merlot “Filip” 2013 & Merlot “Buri” 2013 – this was a fascinating chance to compare these two monumental Merlots from two different vineyards in the same, excellent vintage. Buri is from the village of Buttrio and is structured and complex, while Filip originates in Rosazzo and is rounder and more generous in youth. The Filip showed as the lighter of the two wines but this is more of a testament to the sheer monolithic power and intensity of the Buri. Both wines show incredible brightness of fruit – a quality that could almost be described as ‘aromatic’. There is a truly amazing level of ripeness to all aspects of these wines which never strays into over-ripe, stewed, or ‘Porty’ territory. No wonder Antonio Galloni described the Buri as ‘one of the most profound expressions of Merlot on the planet’.

BYO Podcast – Episode Five: “Secret Santa” Blind Tasting

4 January 2018 by Alex

Episode 5

For the uninitiated, ‘Bring Your Own’ is a podcast and video web series (in conjunction with Bottled Films) about wine and the people who make it, made by the people who drink it. Each episode has a theme centred around a wine region or style, and takes the form of a free-flowing, informal, and educational conversation.

Getting into the festive spirit for our fifth episode, we gathered a few wine lovers to play “Secret Santa” and exchange some vinous gifts. Of course, we wanted to put a BYO Podcast twist on the tradition with a little blind tasting challenge. Each guest today has brought a special bottle of wine as a gift to be Blind Tasted by another guest. Each person will know who provided the gift, but will have to taste the wine blind and try to guess what the wine they’ve received is.

Special thanks to the great team at The 10 Cases in Covent Garden, in Central London who hosted us for the filming of the episode. Find them online at www.10cases.co.uk

SPOILER ALERT! The wines our participants were tasting in this episode are below the video:

Vassaltis Vineyards Aidani, PGI Cyclades, Santorini Greece 2015
Consolation “Juliette” Roussanne Sauvage IGP Cotes Catalanes, France 2015
Joseph Swan Zinfandel Mancini Ranch, Russian River Valley, California 2012
Clos Signadore Patrimonio Rouge, Corsica 2013

Follow us on social media, @BYOPodcast and share or rate this episode.

Please subscribe to the podcast to make sure you catch all future episodes: here

You can now support the project through our new Patreon page, https://www.patreon.com/bringyourown

BYO Podcast – Episode Four: Pinot Noir

12 December 2017 by Alex

 

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Episode four of our monthly podcast focuses on the profound and capricious Pinot Noir grape. For the uninitiated, ‘Bring Your Own’ is a podcast and video web series (in conjunction with Bottled Films) about wine and the people who make it, made by the people who drink it. Each episode has a theme centred around a wine region or style, and takes the form of a free-flowing, informal, and educational conversation.

Today’s session takes a look at Pinot Noir and some of its most famous expressions in Champagne and Burgundy. We’ve gathered a group of wine lovers to share bottles from their own cellars and to chat about what makes the grape so interesting, and the wines so memorable. We were lucky to be hosted by the great team at Kitchen Table and Bubbledogs in Central London for the filming of this episode. Tucked in the back of Bubbledogs on Charlotte Street, Kitchen Table is one of the most exciting restaurants in London, led by owner/Chef James Knappett. You can find them online at www.kitchentablelondon.co.uk

Follow us on social media, @BYOPodcast and share or rate this episode.

Please subscribe to the podcast to make sure you catch all future episodes: here

Enjoy, follow and subscribe on social media @BYOPodcast.

You can now support the project through our new Patreon page, https://www.patreon.com/bringyourown

The Wines:

Champagne Jacquesson Dizy “Terres Rouge” Rose Extra Brut 2009
Ulysse Collin “Les Maillons” Blanc de Noirs 2012
Domaine Bizot Vosne-Romanee 2014
Domaine Claude Dugat Gevrey Chambertin 2009

Find our host and guests online:

Derek Morrison @DerekDecanted
The Good Wine Shop – www.thegoodwineshop.co.uk

Dan Roznov @ChampagneSpy www.vivino.com/users/champagnespywww.champagnefriends.ch Peter Crawford @Alavolee Alavolee – www.alavolee.com
Christina Rasmussen @ChristinaRasmussen_ www.christinarasmussen.co

BYO Podcast – Episode Three: South Africa

24 November 2017 by Alex

BYO Ep3 Img1

Episode three of our monthly podcast focuses on the ‘New Wave’ wines of South Africa. For the uninitiated, ‘Bring Your Own’ is a podcast and video web series (in conjunction with Bottled Films) about wine and the people who make it, made by the people who drink it. Each episode has a theme centred around a wine region or style, and takes the form of a free-flowing, informal, and educational conversation.

This episode we were really lucky to be hosted at Terroirs Wine Bar in Central London for the filming of this episode. Around the corner from Trafalgar Square, Terroirs is a must visit in London for any winelover. You can find them online at www.terroirswinebar.com.

Joining our own inimitable Derek Morrison this episode are Hannes Storm of Storm Wines (@stormwinessa https://www.stormwines.co.za/), writer/wine judge Treve Ring (@treve_ring http://treve.ca/), and Craig Wessels of Restless River Wines (@restlessriverRR www.restlessriver.com).

The wines tasted in this episode are:

Restless River “Ava Marie” Chardonnay 2015
Storm Wines “Moya’s” Pinot Noir 2014
Alheit “Radio Lazarus” Chenin Blanc 2012
Craven Wines Pinot Gris 2015
Keermont Vineyards Syrah 2014
Klein Constantia Vin de Constance 2013
(Click the links to find similar wines in stock with us)

Please click here to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and make sure you catch all future episodes, and consider rating and reviewing it if you like it!

Enjoy, follow and subscribe on social media @BYOPodcast. You can now support the project through our new Patreon page, https://www.patreon.com/bringyourown

A Visit to Cantina Terlan in Trentino-Alto Adige

25 October 2017 by Hara Mavrommati

Winery Sign

Two weeks ago I had the chance to visit the region of Trentino-Alto Adige as a guest of the only winery in the Terlano village, Cantina Terlano. As soon as we landed in Verona, an assigned driver was expecting a group of Londoners to bring them up to the Dolomites. One hour and a half drive and the old Sud-Tirolese started narrating the history of this region, the reasons that led to the unification with Italy and not Austria. Quite fascinated by his knowledge, I could tell that his fluent Italian was strongly influenced by the German language, or the local ‘Ladino’. He was the perfect tourist guide, as quite often he would stop to explain the history of the castles we were leaving behind and how the Adige River finds its way to the Adriatic Sea.

Cellar PicUpon arrival Martina from Cantina Terlano was waiting for us for a big lunch with the Terlano wines flowing, and soon after we found ourselves walking towards the winery which is situated literally in the middle of the village. We were surrounded by apple orchards and vineyards, all perfectly pruned and looked after. The harvest was almost reaching its end, but the cellar was still very busy. Once we entered the Terlano offices, the smell of the ferments was immediately noticeable and it was then that Klaus Gasser, the Sales & Marketing Director came to greet us, leaving Philipp his assistant to show us around and promising he would be our guide tomorrow in the vineyards.

Old and rare bottles

Old and rare bottles

The winery is simple in style, well structured, and in-keeping with the village’s architecture. Even during this hectic harvest period, it was meticulously tidy. Soon I found myself surrounded by hoses, tanks and barrels and finally on my way down to the room where 100.000 bottles are kept as a library that date back to the 1955 vintage (some bottles are even older). A tasting was set up for the whole group at the winery’s big tasting room, from the huge window of which one can only see Terlano’s famed Neuhaus castle (Nova Domus), which is also depicted on the winery’s logo.

The tasting started with the core range of Cantina Andrian and Terlano (including the fantastic Pinot Bianco and Pinot Grigio), side by side, moved to the Selection wines, such as Terlaner Classico, Vorberg, Quarz, and Porphyr and finished with the exceptionally rare Rarita’ 1991 (100% Pinot Bianco aged on lees for 25 years) and the Terlaner I Grand Cuvee, a blend of Pinot Bianco, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc, which expresses the pure soul and longevity of Terlano’s wines. The grapes of the latter are sourced from the historical vineyards of Vorberg, Kreuth and Winkl.

Traditional pergola-trained vines

Traditional pergola-trained vines

Our visit to Terlano didn’t finish there, as a dinner was prepared later in the evening, in one of the region’s 23 Michelin starred restaurants. There the local cuisine (speck, canederli, wild boar, pasta) meets the most contemporary gastronomic techniques. And as our first day in Alto Adige finished with the sip of coffee and grappa, the next day started with the whole group wandering and hiking up in the famous vineyards, until we reached the steepest ones at an altitude of 900m. The view from there was utterly stunning and the morning chill and fresh air of the Dolomites reinvigorating, although not advised for ‘vertigo’ sufferers. Beautiful Guyot shaped vines of Pinot Bianco sat next to the old, traditional pergola-trained vines, which have grown here for thousands of years on a red, subvolcanic, quartz soil and complete the scenery of the Terlano area.

Descending from the highest vineyards, we were taken for a visit to Bolzano (Bozen for the locals), the capital of Alto Adige and later in the evening we were back again on the road to Verona, for our return to London. Cantina Terlano offered us this trip to their home and we came back full of knowledge, respect for the growers’ hard work and appreciation for this unique terroir and product.

BYO Podcast – Episode Two: Jura

9 October 2017 by Alex

BYO Podcast Jura

Our monthly podcast returns for its second epiosde. ‘Bring Your Own’ is a podcast and video web series (in conjunction with Bottled Films) about wine and the people who make it, made by the people who drink it. Each episode has a theme centred around a wine region or style, and takes the form of a free-flowing, informal, and educational conversation.

This second episode focuses on the Jura region of France. While the region is perhaps best known for Comté cheese and Louis Pasteur, it is also home to some of France’s most exciting wines, including the timeless and iconic Vin Jaunes. We gathered a group of fanatical Jura lovers to share bottles from their own cellars and to chat about what makes the regions wines and people so unique and captivating.

Joining our very own Derek Morrison are international wine exporter Alessio Guidi, Jura Wine Importer Doug Wregg from Les Caves de Pyrene, Heidi Nam Knudsen from Ottolenghi Restaurant Group, and David Clawson from The Remedy Wine Bar.

We were really lucky to be hosted by the great team at Kitchen Table and Bubbledogs in Central London for the filming of this episode.  Tucked in the back of Bubbledogs on Charlotte Street, Kitchen Table is one of the most exciting restaurants in London, led by owner/Chef James Knappett. You can find them online at www.kitchentablelondon.co.uk

Click the video below to watch on YouTube, or click the links to listen on iTunesStitcher, or Soundcloud. If you like the podcast, please consider rating, reviewing, and subscribing on your platform of choice. You can follow the podcast on Twitter and Instagram @BYOpodcast.

BYO Podcast – Episode One: Grower Champagne

9 October 2017 by Alex

Grower Champagne Podcast

You may have noticed that we launched our new podcast ‘Bring Your Own’ back in August. This monthly podcast and video web series (in conjunction with Bottled Films) is about wine and the people who make it, made by the people who drink it. Each episode has a theme centred around a wine region or style, and takes the form of a free-flowing, informal, and educational conversation.

The first episode focuses on “Grower Champagne”, wines made by the very same people who grow the grapes. Bringing their own are Derek Morrison from The Good Wine Shop, Sandia Chang, owner of Bubbledogs, Champagne enthusiast Peter Crawford, and David Clawson, owner of The Remedy wine bar.

Click the video below to watch on YouTube, or click the links to listen on iTunes, Stitcher, or Soundcloud. If you like the podcast, please consider rating, reviewing, and subscribing on your platform of choice. You can follow the podcast on Twitter and Instagram @BYOpodcast.

Producer Profile: the Champagnes of Marie Courtin

30 June 2017 by Alex

This month as part of our Grower Champagne Month celebrations, we were lucky enough to taste the full range of Marie Courtin Champagnes. This small Champagne producer is owned and run by Dominique Moreau, granddaughter of Marie Courtin who tended the vines herself when the men in the family were fighting in World War I, while many other families abandoned their vines altogether.

Dominique farms a tiny 2.5ha in the village of Polisot in the Cotes des Bar region of Champagne. After many years of being somewhat overlooked, these southerly terroirs (Polisot is closer to Chablis than to Reims, for example) are home to some of the most exciting Champagne growers of all. The Marie Courtin vineyards are planted almost entirely to Pinot Noir, with a miniscule 0.5ha of Chardonnay. The vines are farmed according to fully organic and biodynamic principles, an approach which – although on the rise – is still very rare in the region. The philosophy here has always been ‘one grape variety, one vineyard, one vintage’, in stark contrast to the emphasis placed on blending by the vast majority of producers in the region. The yields are kept very low in order to ensure perfectly ripe fruit and Dominque adds no sugar at bottling – all the Champagnes are Extra Brut.

These wines have a pure and uniquely vibrant character which has to be tasted to be truly understood and bear little relation to the mass-produced, heavily worked Champagnes one often encounters.

Marie Courtin Bottles

Resonance

From a vineyard with younger vines, this Pinot Noir is full of sweet spice character and bruised apples. The tension between generous texture, laser-like acidity, and stoney minerality creates an extremely moreish yet cerebral Champagne.

Eloquence

100% Chardonnay from Dominique’s tiny parcel. This shows more delicate structure than the Pinot-based wines, and some slightly more exotic notes of ginger. Driven by ripe green apples and citrus fruit, there is a refreshing, chalky texture here.

Efflorescence

Efflorescence is in many ways the flagship cuvee here. This is made from Pinot Noir vines that are around 40 years of age. Smoky and intensely flavoured, Efflorescence shows an intense red fruit character that is reinforced by the fuller body of the wine. The breadth of flavours and aromas here is impressive.

Concordance

Concordance is made from a special selection of grapes from the same vineyard as Efflorescence, and uses no additions of Sulphur at any point in the winemaking process. There is a real ethereal quality here, which is somehow more intense aromatically than the Efflorescence but also more elegantly structured on the palate. The same could be said about all the Champagnes from this address, but Concordance really feels like a living, breathing organism, changing slightly with every sip!

Grower Champagne Showcase in Chiswick

16 June 2017 by Alex

Grower Champagne Month

As you will have noticed, Grower Champagne Month is in full swing across London, and in our shops! We have had winemakers in store pouring their wines and a flood of new Champagnes hitting the shelves to add to the excitement.

If you were around in Chiswick during last year’s Grower Champagne Month, you probably heard about, or were among the many who attended, our First Annual Grower Champagne Showcase tasting.  We had an overwhelming turnout of wine lovers who came to revisit favourites, as well as friends who were certain they didn’t even like Champagne.  I am so happy we were able to deliver pleasant surprises for both groups, and to show that Champagne has a broad and diverse range of styles for almost any palate.  This year we want to inspire the same kind of wine discoveries for you. Whether you are a seasoned Champagne collector, convinced fizzy stuff isn’t to your tastes, or enthusiastically somewhere in the middle; this tasting is full of excitement for anyone.

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For the past 11 months I have laid awake at night pondering how we could make this year’s tasting even bigger and better.  Thankfully, our generous growers and partners were up to the challenge! Together we have crafted an unforgettable lineup of Champagnes for this year’s showcase. This is your perfect chance to taste some of the most exciting wines being produced anywhere in the world today.  Some of these wines are the best kept secrets in Champagne, and rarely cracked open for such events, so don’t miss the rare opportunity to taste them!

Chiswick’s Big Grower Champagne Showcase! – £20 per person
Saturday, June 24th (1st Session 1-4pm, 2nd Session 4-8pm)
RSVP: Chiswick@thegoodwineshop.co.uk  or Call 020 8994 8184

Here are a few of the amazing growers whose wines will be on show throughout the day.  To learn a bit more about each producer click here to visit the “Meet the Growers” section of www.drinkgrowerchampagne.co.uk:

Agrapart Pere et Fils
Bereche et Fils
Laherte Freres
Marie Courtin
Hubert Paulet
Varnier-Fanniere
Charles Dufour
David Leclapart
Chartogne-Taillet
Frederic Savart
Benoit Dehu
Alexandre Filaine
Andre Beaufort
De Sousa
Eric Rodez
Jacquesson
And More…

To ensure everyone has ample space to taste comfortably we have decided to split the event into two separate sessions. You have the choice to attend the tasting between 1pm-4pm or 4pm-8pm with the same selection of wines being offered for each session.  Tickets are only £20 to taste more than 20 different Champagnes being poured, ranging in retail value from £25 per bottle to £175 per bottle.

But There’s A Catch…

Tickets for this year’s event are limited.  We want to ensure everyone has enough space to enjoy these wines as there are few things more frustrating than an overcrowded tasting.  So reserve your places quickly and rest easy knowing you’ll be treated to an afternoon of great Champagnes paired perfectly with a little bit of elbow room.

So book your places for either session today, and prepare for probably the best tasting event of the Summer!