“Wine of Romania” Front And Centre

A couple of years ago on one of the my first ever press trips I headed out to Romania. As it still is now, it was one of the last bastions of good quality, but relatively cheap wine that supermarkets the world over are begging for.

At the time I was impressed by owner Phil Cox and his plans of expansion at the already sizeable Cramele Recas (30m bottle output this year). But it was all well and good hiding the very (and increasingly unfairly) stereotyped “wine of Romania” behind the supermarket’s own label, but how would the booze buying public react when they decided to throw out their own label with its origin front and centre? Continue reading ““Wine of Romania” Front And Centre”


Ah those beautiful compound words.  Loads of people give the German language quite a bit of grief, but I think it sounds great.  They have this thing where they compound smaller words together to make one massive word that sounds delicious when you nail it.

At the recent Wines of Germany tasting I learnt a new one: “WEINSCHLAFWAGEN”. It’s a “wine, sleep, car”, and it’s a brilliant idea to increase wine tourism down one of the epic German wine rivers. Continue reading “NEW WAY TO VISIT GERMANY – I CAN’T PRONOUNCE IT, BUT IT LOOKS AMAZING”


Wine history in Europe is pretty much split into two distinct periods. That’s before and after the phylloxera.  Phylloxera is a vine pest that came over from North America in the 1860s and effectively ate its way through the roots of most of Europe’s vineyards.

Between 1870 and 1895 it’s estimated up to 80%of Europe’s vineyards were destroyed.  The fallout from the disaster saw tough times for many, but Rioja, as I found out on a recent trip, could be argued to have been one of the few winners. Continue reading “HOW RIOJA SAW UPSIDE FROM 19th CENTURY WINE DISASTER”


Following up from yesterday’s little video, I thought it best to explain a little something that was completely lost on me for a while. So we’re out in Haro, Rioja at this brilliant wine festival drinking all the wines (great), eating lovely food (brilliant), and it’s all based around a train station.  Didn’t get that bit for a while, but as ever, a quick bit of digging and you find out why railways are so iconic in Rioja. Continue reading “WHY ARE RAILWAYS IN RIOJA SUCH A BIG DEAL?”

Trying To Find A Weekend To Visit Rioja?

A couple of weeks back I got to visit Rioja for the first time.  We headed off to a town called Haro, which has a collective of 7 top wineries that run an annual festival the Cata Estacion Del Haro.  Pay your money, wander round for the weekend, and eat and drink and be merry.

Sounds good, eh?

Check out this little teaser I made for YouTube…and check your diary for next year 🙂 Continue reading “Trying To Find A Weekend To Visit Rioja?”

Prosecco-Style English Fizz To Flow Out Of Norfolk

The UK’s love affair with Prosecco is well known.  Less well known is that Prosecco’s production method is very different to some of the other famous bubbles around the world, including Champagne, Cava, and the world class bubbles being made in the UK.  That is until now, as a Norfolk based wine producer, Flint Vineyard, has released a Prosecco-style english fizz, and I can’t wait to give it a try.

Screen Shot 2018-06-29 at 18.00.19 Continue reading “Prosecco-Style English Fizz To Flow Out Of Norfolk”