Wine Carbon FootprintThe UK is one of the most diverse of wine drinking nations on Earth. Visit any wine retailer and see wines on offer from many of the far flung corners of the world.  By contrast, many wine producing countries rarely buy anything other than domestic produce. EG You are unlikely to see wines from California in a supermarket in Madrid, Paris or Rome.  Yet in the UK we represent all these markets and more.

With that in mind, do we as consumers question the differences between one bottle of wine and another in terms of its polluting trail in getting to our shelves?  As a huge fan of wines from all over the world I don't want to stigmatise a wine by location but surely it must bare thinking about whilst in the isles of the supermarket.  British wine must certainly have a far less imposing carbon footprint than, say,a wine from South Africa or Napa Valley, just as a sweet wine from Bordeaux must have a lesser footprint than an alternative from Samos in the Dodecanese in Greece.

We all have different reasons for selecting certain bottles and they're not always related to wine quality.  A good example is one I heard recently from a friend who buys Hunter Valley wines where possible because it evokes memories of great times had visiting the region.  The question of taste or any other factor was secondary.  However, a question starting to crop up in wine conversations is:  should our wine buying choices be influenced by environmental factors such as import distances or the thickness of the glass on the bottle (Thicker glass bottles seeming more ostentatious with no benefit to the wine)?

It's food for thought and I'd be interested to know if consumers do think along these lines.  For myself, I feel obliged to buy something from New Zealand this evening to be as non-partisan as possible.  Tasting note to follow!


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As COVID-19 conspires with the grimmest of winds and rain to force a societal retreat behind our own front doors, the word ennui springs to mind. The muddle of displeasure is pierced when Natalia hands me a large bulbous glass of a liquid I do not recognise.

 

 

Britain’s lamentable exit

On the eve of Britain’s official departure from the EU, my partner and I decided to explore a small town on the Italian Riviera where thewintry cold doesn’t feel so much like cold war bite.

I had warned my significant other that I would be having an inverse departure party, a release of the sanity valve if you like!

 

Sitting inside the ancient castle walls inside the town of Soave, a short drive from Verona in northern Italy, the unique slightly almond aroma of the indigenous grape, Garganega, rises gently from my glass. The castle sprawls up the side of an extinct volcano that gives the region its variant soil structures that mark out the better quality of Soave wines.

 

Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.

 

The cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the final resting place of Saint James, rises out of the landscape, infested with antiquity. The rambling steep streets give way to shafts of dramatic light, emblazoned chapels, and tightly packed tapas bars, dusty, as old novels pressed together in antiquarian bookshops.

 

Driving into the Entre-Deux-Mers region from the north, the vineyards roll out like a bright green deep-pile carpet across the undulating land. It’s hard not to be excited about tasting wines with so much heritage, as we head to Chateau-Sainte-Marie to meet with 5th generation owner, Stéphane Dupuch. 

 

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