Thursday, 25 February 2010

Ruby Baby

Do not see that it has anything to do with us!!!  Similarities are all coincidental.  Art and life reciprocate.
The woman in the play who makes wine, lives in a castle and has great danes and volunteers is clearly not me - they say she is bossy. Ergo...

Great romp and very well written and acted and directed.  Well done Louisa Young and the BBC.

28th February by MW (master of wine) ROSE MURRAY

Short Cuts: Ruby Baby by Louisa Young- Radio Play

A fantastically funny thriller set in a castle in Tuscany. Why did Ruby go missing? Was she eaten by Olivia's dog? Did she drink too much organic red wine and fall into a vat of olive oil in the night? The volunteers speculate...

The first episode of Louisa's Radio Play is on BBC Radio 7- Ruby Baby- the first episode is available to download now. The 2nd episode airs on 1st March.

Charlotte and I think it would make a fabulous film!

I wonder if we can find a photograph of the real Ruby?
PS For more of Louisa's work have a look here...

Saturday, 20 February 2010


Click here

The top 10

Recommendations > Ten best wines from > The top 10

From Vineyards Direct first opened its virtual door to the public in December 2006. Created by Esme Johnstone, co-founder of Majestic Wine, and David Campbell, who founded Guide Hachette des Vins, the online merchant offers a limited selection of exciting wines, none of them run-of-the-mill and each one hand picked for its outstanding quality and value for money. It specialises in French, Italian and Spanish wines, none of them branded names but individual wines sourced and imported direct from the grower, just as its name suggests. Its wines invariably perform well in our blind tastings, which is why we've been inpsired to to select our ten best.

Castello di Potentino, Sacromente, Montecucco Rosso 2005

100% Sangiovese from Tuscany. Lots of red cherry fruit and spice. The palate is balanced and fresh and wrapped with more ripe red fruit characters and hint of coffee on the finish.
£10.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Markus Molitor, Haus Klosterberg, Riesling, Mosel-Saar-Ruwer 2007

Beautiful varietal characters with notes of lime and apple and hint of apricot. Crisp on the palate supported by a slatey minerality and a refreshing structure.
£9.45 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Chateau Canuet, Margaux 1999

Nice development aromas on the nose, peppery and meaty with some dark fruit aromas. The palate still has firm tannins with secondary fruit characters and a medium length. Very enjoyable wine to drink now.
£16.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Castello di Potentino, Piropo, IGT Toscana 2005

Rounded, deep cherry fruit. Lushness to the palate, but freshness and vibrant as well, with just a nip of spice. Good length and clean.
£12.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Mas Carlot, Cuvee Tradition, Costieres de Nimes 2008

Crushed red fruits on the nose with leafy/herbal layers. Very attractive and accessible with fresh black and red berries flavours. Straightforward but has plenty going for it nonetheless.
£6.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Clos des Juilly, Saint-Veran 2006

Good expression of ripe fruits with some apple flavours and creaminess. Good complexity on the palate, easy drinking Chardonnay with solid structure and rich fruit characters on the finish.
£12.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Chateau Sainte-Marie, Reserve, Entre-Deux-Mers 2008

Compact and rounded nose with some apple and lime flavours and honeyed touches. More lean citrus fruit in the mouth fleshes out a bit on the mid-palate. Green and zesty.
£8.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Serge Mathieu, Cuvee Tradition, Pur Pinot, Blanc de Noirs Champagne

Some yeasty and bready aromas on the nose. Crisp mousse and a nice citrus precision to the flavours. Just lovely and flavoursome with lots of more-ish qualities. Definitely one of the best value Champagnes on the market.
£21.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Romain Bouchard, Domaine de la Grande Chaume, Vau de Vey, Chablis 1er Cru 2006

Pleasant and attractive charcoal tinge to the nose, with some lime and green fruit aromas. Finely composed and balanced palate with a crisp acidity and a fine minerality on the finish. Really drinking beautifully now.
£16.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Rocca di Tufo, Orvieto 2007

Lively pear and apple aromas with a hint of citrus zest. Crisp and balanced with a pretty decent weight and texture, attractive melon and pear characters on the finish.
£9.95 From Vineyards Direct ( / 020 7490 9910)

Click here

Decanter Top 10 fromvineyardsdirect

Both Piropo and Sacromonte make the list after a blind tasting.

Very pleased.

Why the silence

So, you have all been very uninspired and despondent without my entries, I am sure, and wondering why.  Tossing and turning all night with concern and perplexity.  Well... I SET FIRE TO MYSELF.

Not out of protest.  Not self immolation.  But stupidity.  It was very cold and my stove was not working so I decided to get it going for the doggies before getting into bed, with a sqirt of household alcohol.  This, I hasten to add is a very common practice.  Whoosh boom a ball of flames and the rest is hospital and bandages.  A very common accident as I was told by the first aid emergency doctor.

The ambulance drivers turned out to be friends and I had a very sweet kind nurse in there with me so it was all quite funny.  We hurtled down the mountain to the Grosseto general hospital which is a vast labyrinthine complex and got lost immediately.  The ambulance men could not find the dermatology ward as it had been moved so we wandered around for ages.  This is me asking passers-by where it was, waiting in the corridor where the men left me.

When I got back home I had to have my hair cut as it had been burnt into a strange Klaus Nomi bouffant.  I am now hairstyled like Mia Farrow/Twiggy/Jean Seberg.  Joan of Arc who managed to get off the stake look.  This is me having my hair cut veiled so the hair does not get into the wounds.  I have to keep wrapped up and must not let the sun touch my face so vampire life for a bit.

I have in the last weeks been through many classic horror characters - The Mummy, Elephant Man,
The Invisible Man.

Sunday, 7 February 2010

Scenting around Potentino- The Chemistry of a Wine's Nose

The wonderful Avery Gilbert has written a fascinating summary of recent research into the chemistry of the scent of wine and how wine develops in the bottle at a molecular level. I am sure that already some of the large industrial grape beverage companies are making use of this technology to fix their defective wines.

Avery's book, although not about wine, is a great read- his views on our abilities to find truffles particularly excited me- if only I wasn't so far from the ground...