from the archives: Malbec Tasting 2017

Not too long ago I got the chance to attend the Malbec tasting of mostly Argentina versus a lonely Australian example. The variety of styles of one grape is incredible. This is also a great reinforcement of how well Malbec does at higher altitudes, and with more sunlight than native France allows. Malbec is very …

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from the archives: Group Tasting 2015 – Cabernets

This one is from the archives during my diploma days. We had an absolute ball tasting through a selection of wines. The idea was to cement the DNA of a grape variety on to your taste buds and memory. We would dissect each wine in detail and argue over the minutia like alcohol levels; typicity; …

Continue reading from the archives: Group Tasting 2015 – Cabernets

…this is not champagne: Massoni Lectus

A: golden and petulant N: incredible richness even from a flute, medium+ intensity of caramelised peaches and figs, toffee and Chantilly cream with warm spices, think French vanilla and cinnamon. Freshly baked tarte tatin anyone? P: full bodied and again that richness fills the mouth with frothy. Its like drinking a cascade of frothy caramelised …

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Wild Earth Pinot Noir 2014

A: beautiful deep and bright ruby N: medium + intensity nose offering depth of flavours, dark forest fruits, cherry, sarsaparilla, earthy, blue flowers, blueberries and warm raspberry top notes with just a hint of meatiness. P: medium+ intensity with spicy savoury tartness from high acid and dusty tannin mouthfeel. Bright blue spectrum fruits with dried …

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What is Lladoner Pelut?

A grape variety Aka Grenache Poilu aka Velu Variant of Grenache Less susceptible to coulure than Grenache Noir More consistent and more vigorous than Grenache Noir Lower sugar levels at physiological ripeness Buds late and is very sensitive to growing conditions Officially and widely sanctioned in Languedoc and Roussillon France total 366ha Varietal expressions are …

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A Short Philosophy of Wine

I wonder how to explain my love for wine sometimes. What made me swerve life paths and pursue wine so wholeheartedly. Why do I dedicate so much time and money to it. How to capture the essence of why I am so passionate about a drink that most consider just a way to get drunk.

This short essay comes part way to that… I will need to consider putting my feelings down on paper, so to speak.

Neel Burton personal website and blog


Wine lovers know that wine is so much more than a drink, but how to explain the love of wine to those who do not already share it?

When you uncork a bottle of mature fine wine, what you are drinking is the product of a particular culture and tradition, a particular soil and exposure, a particular climate, the weather in that year, and the love and labour and life of people who may since have died. If you know how to read it, the wine, like a book, will speak to you of all those things and more.

The wine is still changing, still evolving, so much so that no two bottles can ever be quite the same. By now, the stuff has become incredibly complex, almost ethereal. Without seeking to blaspheme, it has become something like the smell and taste of God. This moving mirror, this transdimensional distillate…

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