High timber salmon

Vinous Table: High Timber, London, UK

Vinous Table, United Kingdom

Neal Martin, May 2021

It was a pleasure to get back out again and revisit one of central London’s dining secrets. Anyone with an interest in South African wine should make a beeline for High Timber, which should reopen fully from May 17.

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What Makes a Great Barolo Vintage? Establishing a Framework

Italy: Piedmont, featured

Antonio Galloni, May 2021

What makes a great Barolo vintage? Unlike some regions, Bordeaux being the most notable, Piedmont does not have an established framework that sets out the criteria required for a vintage to be considered very high in potential quality. What follows is my framework of objective criteria that are necessary in order for a Barolo (or Barbaresco) vintage to be considered truly great. It is inspired by the late Denis Dubourdieu and the model he developed for assessing young Bordeaux vintages and the research my colleague Alessandro Masnaghetti has done in collecting and analyzing weather, harvest dates and other data. To that, I add my 20+ years of visiting the region and all of the information I have gathered in speaking with winemakers, agronomists and other professionals over that time, plus drinking more than my fair share of the wines. As with Dubourdieu’s model, this framework addresses the growing season, and does not venture into an assessment of the wines.

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Cellar Favorite: 2008 Mvemve Raats MR de Compostella

South Africa, cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites

Neal Martin, May 2021

On my bucket list of wine-related things to do, apart from tasting the 1947 Romanée-Conti and climbing K2 with Lalou Bize-Leroy in order to overcome my debilitating vertigo, is to conduct an unabridged vertical of Mvemve Raats MR de Compostella.

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Chile: A Stylistic Journey From the Andes to the Coastal Ridge

Chile, featured

Joaquín Hidalgo, May 2021

Chilean wine producers are developing new styles, using grapes from vineyards planted in the far south of the country and the granite rich soils of the coastal mountain ridge known as the Cordillera de la Costa. Meanwhile, in Maipo, the Cabernet Sauvignons are growing ever more precise. This report provides an overview of these trends and what the changes mean for lovers of Chilean wine.

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California Vineyard Series: Kamen Vineyard

California Vineyard Series, United States: California, featured

Antonio Galloni, May 2021

With its undulating hills and striking contours, Kamen is one of the most evocative estates in Sonoma. The vineyard is just a short drive from the town square, yet it feels very remote. Screenwriter Robert Mark Kamen bought his property in 1980, mostly for the views, as he tells it. “I had just sold the screenplay for The Karate Kid and I wanted to celebrate,” Kamen told me recently.

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Cellar Favorite: 2011 Cupano Brunello di Montalcino

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, Italy: Tuscany

Eric Guido, Apr 2021

After the tragic passing of proprietor Lionel Cousin, I found myself digging through my cellar for past vintages of his lovely creation, the Cupano Brunello di Montalcino.

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Vinous Table: Brat x Climpson’s Arch, Hackney, United Kingdom

Vinous Table, United Kingdom

Neal Martin, Apr 2021

Rejoice! Restaurants in the UK are (sort of) open again. I could not have chosen a more perfect reintroduction to fine dining.

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Rheingau and Mittelrhein 2018s: Mixed Riesling Results

Germany, featured

David Schildknecht, Apr 2021

The challenges posed by summer drought and sheer precocity of vine evolution are evident in the Rheingau and Mittelrhein, but there are numerous wines that no Riesling lovers should miss.

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Marking Milestones with Moulin Touchais

France: Loire, Verticals & Retrospectives, featured

Rebecca Gibb MW, Apr 2021

In search of something to drink to mark a milestone birthday, those of us with a less-than-legendary birth year are resigned to the fact that our first breath did not coincide with the perfect growing season in Bordeaux. Revealing your date of birth to châteaux owners keen to open a special bottle often leads to a pitying shrug of the shoulders and a gallic ‘Bof’ when you disclose your parents poorly timed your entry to the world. But there’s hope for us yet: an underground cellar in a small Loire Valley town could be the answer to that elusive anniversary bottle that doesn’t require you to remortgage your house simply to mark a special date in the diary.

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Cellar Favorite: 2004 Poggio Il Castellare Brunello di Montalcino

cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, Italy: Tuscany

Eric Guido, Apr 2021

Having just celebrated its fifteenth birthday, I thought it was about time to check in on the 2004 Brunello di Montalcino from Poggio Il Castellare, an estate from the southeast that I associate with suave character and dark ripe fruits.