“Q” is for Qvevri

Following on from my post on oak, when I touched on the fact different vessels are used for both fermentation and/or maturation of wine, I wanted to look at an entirely different type of vessel – one that dates back to the beginnings of winemaking in fact – the Qvevri. These rather unique vessels hail from Georgia (the country not the US state!). Given that Georgia is considered by many to be the birthplace of wine, perhaps it is…

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“P” is for Picpoul de Pinet

I could have chosen so many things for the letter ‘P’ but have decided to go with Picpoul de Pinet as it’s not a wine that is drunk widely, and given the lovely warm weather we have at the moment, it is a perfect accompaniment for alfresco dining (for those lucky enough to have gardens during the current lockdown that is). The grape Picpoul is actually a family of grapes: Picpoul Rouge (Red), Picpoul Gris (Rosé) and the one…

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“O” is for oak

Wood has long been used as a vessel for wine, historically more as a form of storage, but as understanding of the influence wood can have on wine became known, so wood, and oak in particular, has increased in importance. While some wines are fermented and aged entirely in relatively inert vessels such as stainless steel or concrete eggs, other wines are fermented in and or aged in oak. Why oak?  It is strong and supple and importantly for…

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“N” is for natural wine

I thought I’d include natural wine in this A-Z as it’s a topic which really divides opinion.  I know many wine professionals who scoff, but for every sceptic there is a loyal follower and in today’s day and age where provenance, sustainability and the environment are increasingly important to consumers, this ‘movement’ is only likely to grow. What is natural wine?  Essentially it takes winemaking back to basics, back to how wine ‘used to be made’, eschewing the use…

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“M” is for Madeira

If pressed to name my favourite type of fortified wine it wouldn’t be Sherry, it wouldn’t even (despite loving these wines too) be Port, it would in fact be Madeira…and its not even close!   I suspect Madeira is probably the wine most people pass over when perusing the aisles of the supermarket for a bottle of something fortified, which is a huge shame and the reason why the letter “M” is dedicated to the fortified wonder that is Madeira!…

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