The 2009 Harvest in Bordeaux

Wednesday, 30 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

Oliver East and I have been in Bordeaux for the last few days enjoying some late summer sun and the beaming, smiling faces of the Bordelais.

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That was an exceedingly good pint of Harvey's Mr. Kipling!

Friday, 25 September 2009 by Tom Hudson

Firstly I have to apologise - this hasn't got anything to do with wine.

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Four Contrasting Visits In The Rhone Valley

Thursday, 24 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

Contrasting wine-making styles, personalities and cellar conditions were brought home to me on a recent visit to the Rhône valley.

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The Carruades Phenomenon

Tuesday, 22 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

Those who follow the fine wine market will probably have noticed the remarkable recent rise in price of Carruades de Lafite, the second wine of the famous First Growth. The meteoric price increases have resulted in an extraordinary situation where some vintages are now changing hands for more money than First Growths themselves. Farr Vintners recently sold the 2004 vintage (our rating 15/20) for a higher price than we currently sell Mouton Rothschild, Haut Brion or Cheval Blanc. The 2000 vintage is now selling for over ten times the price at which we sold it to our customers en primeur in June 2001.

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Timothy Taylor meets Coche-Dury in Shepherd's Bush

Wednesday, 16 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

It's early evening in mid September. It should have been a balmy evening as we wandered down the Uxbridge Road from Shepherd's Bush Green but it wasn't. It was absolutely tipping down with rain. Real rain of the cats and dogs variety. Being a Crystal Palace supporter means visits to some far flung football grounds in all corners of Britain and some fairly dodgy pubs - I don't suppose that many Farr Vintners customers have been to Burnley, Port Vale or even Millwall. Anyway September 15th was QPR away and a rare London Derby so that's why we were getting soaked in W12.

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Hotel El Bulli and Selosse

Monday, 14 September 2009 by Jonathan Stephens

Seville in August is hot. No that's underselling it; its very hot. I had booked a short break to Seville at the end of August without checking the temperatures in advance. Maybe the ease of getting hotel rooms at short notice should have been a clue but anyway I ended up in Seville and sweltered. The locals who obviously know about these things had all decamped to the coast so the city was practically empty. The only people one saw were bewildered and sweaty tourists; the modern day mad dogs and englishmen going out in the midday sun. Actaully the temperature did not seem to drop much even at night as by 11.30 in the evening it was still 37°C.

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The Greenhouse Effect

Friday, 11 September 2009 by Oliver East

Being in the wine trade has its occasional perks and last night, Tom (Hudson) and I were lucky to enjoy a few great bottles over dinner at one of London's finest restaurants - The Greenhouse.

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Haut Brion in Belgium

Wednesday, 9 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

Oliver East and I recently jumped aboard the Eurostar to Brussels on our way to one of the world's greatest restaurants. Hof Van Cleve turned out to be nowhere near Brussels and in fact pretty much slap-bang in the middle of nowhere at all. However, it was well worth the journey as the food was absolutely amazing. Hof Van Cleve is the proud holder of 3 michelin stars (only 1 other restaurant in Belgium has 3 stars) and ranked 26 in the world's 100 best restaurants.

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La Beaugravière - Rhône Heaven

Monday, 7 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

Mondragon is not a holiday destination. This little French town is situated south of Montélimar (world capital of nougat) and east of the famous Gorges de l'Ardèche through which I would thoroughly recommend a down-river "escapade" by kayak.

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IWC Awards Dinner 2009

Thursday, 3 September 2009 by Stephen Browett

Last night Henry Matson and I put on our black ties and headed for The Grosvenor House in Park Lane for the annual IWC Wine Awards. As I don't actually own a black tie, this involved borrowing Tom Hudson's bow tie which only took about 15 minutes of origami-like folding and manipulating to get into a vaguely recognisable shape.

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