WSET has just released the 2017 revision of the highly acclaimed Level 3 certification course, and I'm very pleased to say that we will be offering the new course in Miami beginning January 14, 2017. This is an exceptional program that gives the passionate consumer or dedicated trade professional a solid grounding in the world of wine and leads to one of the most highly prized certifications in the industry, I'll be teaching this six-day course with my good friend and WSET mentor James Cluer, MW. Don't miss this chance to share in a life-changing wine experience!Read More
The announcement of a stunning Cognac release prompts some thoughts on the most elegant of brandies. And while few will be up for paying £60,000 pounds for one of the six-liter decanters of Louis XIII there are other Cognacs to consider that still carry the pedigree of this spirited terroir.Read More
For some of us, Spring cleaning means getting rid of unused items, but at the Champagne house of Bollinger, a cleaning project unearthed some incomparable cellar treasures and created a new wine library.Read More
An Oregon pinot noir has scored a stunning victory at the world's most prestigious wine competition, winning one of only 16 Platinum Best in Show medals at the Decanter World Wine Awards. It's not only a well-deserved recognition for a very fine wine, it illustrates an important expansion of the world's wine palate.Read More
An interactive dinner in which guests cook alongside six star chefs gives ample opportunity to explore the mysteries (and the joys) of pairing wine and food. First up, a challenging combination of rich veal and foie gras dumplings with shaved vegetables in a tangy umami-laden dressing.Read More
Champagne Pommery cellar master Thierry Gasco says he has finally decided to release a Champagne with no added sugar, a "brut nature." However, he isn't doing this with his entry level wine; he is going for the gold with his top-of-the-line Cuvée Louise. But can he make his best wine better by leaving something out?Read More
A favorite game among wine lovers is trying to trick friends with questions about barrel size - just how big is a puncheon, after all? And how many bottles are in a hogshead? And what is a pipe of Port? Barrels come in dozens of sizes, some fairly standard and other sizes used in in a single region. The traditional hogshead is about 238 liters, but in Cognac a hogshead holds around 215 liters, and in Madeira, a hogshead is even smaller. Whew!
The closest we have to a barrel standard is the "Bordeaux Barrel" or barrique that holds 225 liters, or 300 normal sized bottles of wine. This barrel is almost a meter long, and about 69 cm in diameter, which stands in rather stark contrast to the barrel Gérard Bru of Château Peuch Haut in the Languedoc region of southern France announced this week. He had a local carpenter build him a barrel that is 12 meters long, six meters in diameter and weighs more than 40,000 kilos empty. And it holds 300,000 liters of wine, which is 400,000 bottles. That's a lot of wine.
Bru says he won't fill the barrel though - he wants to make an event space out of it and hold tastings and parties inside it. So now we will have toasted guests who are themselves barrel fermented, after a fashion.