[Jane Anson] It’s been a strange start to the en primeur campaign this year. Most tasters seemed to agree that the trip to Bordeaux for assessing the fledging 2013 wines was worthwhile, against many expectations.
[Jane Anson] Courselles chose to plant under the Vin de France label, and all of a sudden, they were no longer restricted by the appellation rules of Bordeaux. So out went Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, in came Chardonnay and Syrah.
[Jane Anson] To combat the cashflow crisis, more and more Sauternes producers are turning their grapes into dry whites. The choice sounds simple, but opinions are fiercely divide.
[Jane Anson] For me, the most interesting and shocking parts of the book lay far away from any infighting over Premier Cru Classés, and are to do with pesticides.
[Jane Anson] While the whites of Chateauneuf can be mysterious, unpredictable and hard to find, they have that heady, seductive quality of a southern Provence night.
[Jane Anson] Under the ownership of the Suntory Group since 1983, Chateau Lagrange has been stripped down, remade, and built back to glory piece by painstaking piece.
[Jane Anson] 2011 was a year that was too light on fruit in some instances, but that many estates in Cotes de Bordeaux produced brilliantly drinkable bottles.
[Jane Anson] The technical information is detailed, clear and completely open – a real insight into a host of innovations, from massal selection, biodynamic practices to treatment of press wines.
[Jane Anson] Speaking as someone who sees new wine gadgets appearing with great regularity, I can tell you that everyone sitting around the table at lunch was clearly thinking (and most of them saying), ‘when can I get one?’
[Jane Anson] Just because 2013 is a difficult vintage, does it deserve to have its en primeur cancelled?