The Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux announces 10 cities to host “en primeur” tastings [April 26-29]

The Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux has announced that this year’s en primeur tastings will be held in 10 cities worldwide (which includes Bordeaux) from April 26-29.

The Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux has said that Bordeaux, New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Brussels, Zurich, Frankfurt, Shanghai and Hong Kong will be the host cities for this year’s campaign.

As noted on their website, tastings will be held from 26-29 April in Bordeaux, with further tastings held around the world on the following timetable:

26 April: Zurich and Shanghai
26-27 April: Brussels
27 April: Frankfurt and Hong Kong
27-28 April: Paris, London, San Francisco and New York

Dedicated venues in each city will be chosen where professionals will be able to taste the 2020 wines from the UGCB’s 131-member estates, in accordance with local health regulations.

The UGCB’s president, Ronan Laborde, said: “We are incredibly committed to maintaining ties with our clients and ambassadors. Despite the restrictions in place, we will do everything in our power to ensure they can enjoy the Bordeaux 2020 vintage.”

The new dates for this year’s campaign were confirmed earlier in the year but the UGCB at the time remained unsure if it would be able to hold the annual tasting solely in Bordeaux. It mentioned that its fall-back option would be to hold the tasting in cities around the world, building and improving upon the system of sending out samples that it rushed into place last spring.

#bordeaux #redwine #winetasting #enprimeur #bordeauxwine #instawine #frenchwine #vin #sommelier #finewine #vinsdebordeaux

The Institute of Masters of Wine Has Announced 10 New MWs

Based in five countries, the new IMW members – including the first MW based in Italy – are James Doidge MW (UK), Gabriele Gorelli MW (Italy), Susan Lin MW (US), Moritz Nikolaus Lueke MW (Germany), Sophie Parker-Thomson MW (New Zealand), Álvaro Ribalta Millán MW (UK), Melissa Saunders MW (US), Kryss Speegle MW (US), Tze Sam MW (UK) and Clare Tooley MW (US).

There are now 418 MWs globally – 149 women and 269 men living or working in 32 countries. Since the first exam in 1953, 493 people have become an MW.

The MWs have proved their understanding of all aspects of wine by passing the Master of Wine exam, recognized worldwide for its rigor and high standards.
The MW exam consists of three distinct parts: the theory and practical exams taken at the end of stage two and the research paper submitted at the end of stage three. The RP is an in-depth study on a wine-related topic from any area of the sciences, arts, humanities, or social sciences.

In addition to passing the exam, and before new members have the right to use the title Master of Wine or initials MW, they must sign the IMW’s code of conduct. By signing the code of conduct, MWs agree to act with honesty, integrity and use every opportunity to share their understanding of wine with others.

The top countries where MWs are based around the world are Australia (28), Canada (10), France (18), New Zealand (15), the UK (210) and the US (56).

Meet the new Masters of Wine

James Doidge MW (UK)
James is the buyer and managing director at specialist importer, the Wine Treasury in London, where over the last 20 years, he has developed a particular specialty in the wines of North America. He graduated in French and German at Durham University but believes his childhood holidays spent in the Beaujolais and the south of France did more for his wine career than the study of 17th-century French tragedy or German Expressionist theatre. In contrast, his introduction to the Napa Valley in his early days as a West-End casino wine buyer was career-changing. He lives in Hampshire, where he is often to be found somewhere on a road bike.

Research paper: The evolution of Grenache Noir in California: trends in production and opportunities for the future.

Gabriele Gorelli MW (Italy)
Gabriele is a wine expert, designer and brand builder born and raised in Montalcino, Tuscany. Gabriele can trace his wine roots back to his grandfather, the smallest renowned producer of Brunello di Montalcino. With a degree in foreign languages and a strong passion for marketing, in 2004, he founded Brookshaw&Gorelli, a design agency specializing in fine wine visual communication. In 2015, he founded a separate wine sales and marketing consultancy company, KH Wines, with clients ranging from wineries to importers and fine dining restaurants. He regularly attends national and international wine competitions as a presenter and judge. Gabriele speaks Italian, English and French with basic proficiency in German. Gabriele is an avid traveler and likes to disconnect and recharge his batteries with trail running and practicing Ashtanga yoga.

Research paper: Quercetin precipitation in Brunello di Montalcino. What are the organic fining options to prevent this phenomenon occurring in bottle?

Susan Lin MW (US)
Susan is the head of wine expertise for online fine wine retailer Belmont Wine Exchange in the San Francisco Bay Area, serving customers worldwide. As a consultant, she curates wine collections, designs wine programs, and specializes in wine and spirits music pairings and events. Susan completed the WSET Diploma while working as a program manager in the high-tech industry, during which she lived and traveled extensively in East Asia. A lifelong devotee of music, Susan is a classical pianist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in classical piano performance and musicology. She has performed internationally as a Chinese classical and folk dancer. Susan also works with performing arts organizations to grow their audiences through innovative programming and events, integrating wine whenever possible. Her joy is to create memorable experiences through wine and the performing arts.

Research paper: Influences of classical music on the perception of a Brut non-vintage Champagne.

Moritz Nikolaus Lueke MW (Germany)
Moritz grew up in Berlin and left the city for his first wine experience and harvest at Georg Breuer winery in 2001. During his oenology studies at Geisenheim University, where he graduated in 2006, he gained experience working for wineries in the Yarra Valley, the Nahe, Rheingau, in Pouilly Fume and on Crete. In the early stages of web 2.0, he worked as an account manager and editor at Wein-Plus, followed by six years as category manager for wines and spirits with the international franchise chain VOM FASS. This was followed by five years with Schlumberger and Segnitz, where he worked as a buyer and brand manager specializing in fine wine from Italy, France, Germany, and the new world. In April 2021, he will join the Wein-Wolf group as managing director for German wines. Outside of work, he enjoys a wide array of music, food and socializing with friends.

Research paper: Arrived with COVID-19, here to stay? Experiences of German wineries with online wine tastings.

Sophie Parker-Thomson MW (New Zealand)
Sophie is a wine producer and wine industry consultant based in Marlborough. Raised in the New Zealand wine regions of Gisborne and Central Otago, winemaking and hospitality were endemic to Sophie’s upbringing. While gaining a law degree and admission to the bar, she felt the inevitable pull back to the wine industry, moving to Marlborough for the 2011 harvest where she met her now-husband, Matt. Together they founded their premium wine venture, Blank Canvas, in 2013, crafting small-batch wines from exceptional single vineyard sites in Marlborough, Central Otago and the Gimblett Gravels®, Hawkes Bay. Their recently launched consultancy business, Lock, Stock & Barrel, provides comprehensive wine industry consulting services spanning vine to bottle. Sophie ordinarily travels multiple times a year to Europe for work, including for vintage. A zealous advocate of the quality and sub-regional diversity of New Zealand and particularly Marlborough wines, Sophie has also been a New Zealand consultant to the World Atlas of Wine (8th ed.). She also enjoys writing, wine educating and judging.

Research paper: What is the relationship between the use of sulphur dioxide and biogenic amine levels in wine?

Álvaro Ribalta Millán MW (UK)
Originally from Barcelona, Álvaro moved to London in 2006 after completing his undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering. His wine passion developed over several years, working in restaurants and wine bars in the UK capital. Over the years that followed, Álvaro studied all WSET qualifications, finishing his Diploma in 2014, for which he won the Lustau and Derouet Jameson Scholarships. In 2011, Álvaro completed a master’s degree in engineering management and carried out the final thesis in a wine bottling plant in Veneto, Italy. He has been working for Indigo Wine since 2014, currently as business development director, and has done harvest work in Bierzo, Douro, Jerez, and Uco Valley. Álvaro speaks four languages, and outside of wine, he enjoys running, playing football, cooking, traveling, and spending time with his young family.

Research paper: An analysis of the different labeling options for traditional method sparkling wines in the region of Penedès.

Tze Sam MW (UK)
Born and raised in Singapore, Tze completed her undergraduate degree in English literature at Oxford, followed by a master’s in management at the London Business School. Since then, Tze has been carving her path in advertising, advising leading global brands on their digital marketing strategies. This has included several businesses in the wine, beer, and spirits sectors. After stints at Fetch Media and within the Dentsu Aegis Network, Tze is currently client services director at Jellyfish, where she heads up the mobile and app marketing team. Her interest in wine started early in Singapore, where she was a frequent interloper at tastings and dinners at various wine societies. This fascination with wine continued to develop at university and beyond. She weaves alongside work her role as president of the Oxford and Cambridge Alumni Wine Society, running a calendar of producer-led tastings in London while also consulting on wine buying and food pairing for select restaurants.

Research paper: ‘A bottle of good solid edifying Port… (and) this plaguy French Claret’: investigating the political, economic, and social significance of wine drinking and intoxication in eighteenth-century English literature.

Melissa Saunders MW (US)
A native New Yorker, Melissa obtained a degree in English literature from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Post-grad, she moved to Italy, where she caught the food and wine bug. Law school landed Melissa back in New York, where she enrolled in WSET Diploma classes, ate, and drank well whenever possible. Melissa’s first introduction to the wine business was practicing law with a firm specialized in alcohol beverage regulation. In 2009, she started Communal Brands, a wine import and distribution company. The portfolio consists of small growers committed to environmentally responsible practices in the vineyard and winery. Expanding on a commitment to sustainability, she recently started up Wine Queen, a consulting business that focuses on environmentally responsible wine packaging. When she is not being a mum of two or working, you will find her running long distances. Despite a demanding schedule, she always finds time for good Champagne.

Research paper: Could the environmental impact of wine packaging affect purchasing decisions of retail wine buyers in New York City?

Kryss Speegle MW (US)
Kryss is a US-based winemaker, educator, and sales professional. She has an MS in food science/oenology from U.C. Davis and a WSET Diploma. Her winemaking experience includes harvests in Napa Valley, Germany and New Zealand and extensive work in California’s coastal and interior regions. Since 2011 Kryss has worked with O’Neill Vintners and Distillers, one of California’s leading and fastest-growing wine and spirits producers. She has held leadership roles in winemaking, sales, and business development. She also teaches at the Napa Valley Wine Academy, where her classes include the WSET curriculum and custom-designed programmes for private clients. Kryss lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and daughter.

Research paper: What factors impacted the presence of American wines on US wine lists during the period 1900-1950?

Clare Tooley MW (US)
Clare lives in California with her husband and two sons. She is the director of wine development for Lionstone International sourcing for national wine clubs, including the Wall Street Journal, Laithwaites, Virgin, TCM, NPR and National Geographic. She began her wine life in London with John Armit Wines after completing a French and Spanish degree and choral scholarship at Clare College, Cambridge University. Joining Direct Wines Ltd as a buyer in 2000, she moved to France in 2006. She lived near Bordeaux for eight years, managing the group’s winery and traveling extensively in North America, Europe, and Asia. Clare is a Champagne Academician (class of 2004) and has been inducted as a Chevalier of Burgundy, Bordeaux, and Champagne.

Research paper: An investigation into the impact of cannabis production on viticulture in Sonoma County.

Institute of Masters of Wine Webinar: Climate Change & Global Wine Trade – February 17th, 2021

The Institute of Masters of Wine is continuing its webinar series next Wednesday February 17, 2021 with a session on “The Impact of Climate Change on the Global Wine Trade.”

This webinar will examine the impact of climate change from vine to glass with leading experts climatologist Dr Greg Jones, economist Mike Veseth and CEO of Wine Intelligence Lulie Halstead sharing their views in a discussion covering the impact on growing grapes and wine quality, trade and distribution and on wine consumers. 

Climate change is having an impact on wine production. Increasing temperatures affect vine phenology with reduced winter dormancy, and earlier physiological ripening. They also affect the spread of disease and pests. Climate change is leading to more frequent and more extreme, extreme weather events with increased drought conditions and wildfires in regions such as Australia, California, Spain and South Africa, spring frosts and more violent storms leading to flooding. This means greater variation in quantities of wines produced from one year to the next with increased volatility in wine prices. Climate change imperils the smooth flow of goods as transport infrastructure and ports are vulnerable. Wine consumers are increasingly concerned about climate change and are becoming more demanding in terms of wanting to know what goes into the products they buy and how they are made. This discussion will cover each of the aspects across the entire global wine supply chain.

The event will be moderated by Jane Masters MW and there will be an opportunity for attendees to ask questions.

The panel includes:

Dr Greg Jones – Chair, Evenstad Center for Wine Education / Wine Studies
Lulie Halstead – CEO Wine Intelligence
Jane Masters MW (moderator) – view MW profile
Mike Veseth – Wine Economist, Professor emeritus of International Political Economy at the University of Puget Sound (Tacoma, Washington)

This webinar is open to everyone, but capacity is limited. Follow this link to register.

Wine News: Bourgogne wines held up on the International Market in 2020

BIVB has announced their 2020 export report –  After a very good November in terms of volumes, exports of Bourgogne wines over the first 11 months of 2020 were slightly higher than over the same period in 2019 (up 0.5%), confirming a trend already witnessed in October. Revenue was also close to the record level seen in 2019, down just 2.6% by the end of November, having recovered from being down 9% just a month previously.

However, these figures should be set within a sluggish economy, impacted by both COVID and the 25% Boeing/Airbus tax, which severely penalized sales to the United States, down 14% by volume and 21% in terms of revenue, representing a loss of some €44 million. However, with volumes up 16% equating to 2.2 million bottles, the British market almost entirely offset the loss in volumes from the United States and once again became the leading export destination for Bourgogne wines.

Several territories saw big upticks in numbers, like Sweden, up 18.4% by volume and 14.2% in terms of revenue compared to the same period in 2019, and Denmark, up 24% by volume and 25.6% for revenue. Others enjoyed more moderate growth but for big volumes, like Canada (up 6.4% by volume and 6% in terms of revenue) and Belgium (1.2% and 5.5% respectively).

In France, Bourgogne wines grew their position in the retail sector, up 4.7% by volume and 5.7% in terms of revenue over the first 10 months of 2019, thanks in particular to their popularity in convenience stores and via click-and-collect. As yet, there is no data regarding the restaurant sector, which is in free-fall, or for wine stores that are enjoying a boom.

#winenews #wineeconomics #wineexports #frenchwine #Burgognewines #winesales #winemarketing #winelovers #wine #bivb #burgundy #winetrends

 

WINEGB ANNOUNCES ITS CALENDAR OF ACTIVITIES FOR 2021

WineGB has just released its 2021 calendar of activities as part of its UK market development strategy. This year there will be a strong focus on wine tourism and the retail sector, underpinned by industry values including sustainability, product excellence and innovation.

Activities kick off with a virtual three-day wine tourism conference next month. ‘Wine Tourism in the UK: the route to success’ will run 2nd – 4th March, 10 am-12 pm each day. Whilst aimed primarily at industry members, many of whom are actively engaged in wine tourism, the calibre and line up of speakers will be instructive and inspiring for anyone working within the wider tourism and hospitality industry.

English Wine Week is moving to June, taking place Saturday 19th – Sunday 27th June. Celebrating English vineyards and wines in a week that includes Summer Solstice and Midsummers Day as well as the beginning of flowering seemed a timely and seasonal move for both vineyards and the many retailers selling English wines. With the range of wines now readily accessible and reported record sales of English wines in the last year, the Week provides the perfect opportunity to team up with retailers to spread the strong message of availability, together with encouraging more people to visit the many vineyards that are open to the public (in times without lockdown restrictions). More information about how WineGB will be proposing to work with retailers will be released shortly.

There will be a separate Welsh Wine Week, scheduled to take place Friday 4th – Sunday 13th June. Supported by the Welsh Government’s Drinks Cluster, there will be a veritable toast to the growing number of vineyards across Wales. Further information will be available from https://drinkwelsh.co.uk

The pandemic last year meant that the annual WineGB Trade & Press tasting was cancelled. This year’s tasting is scheduled to take place on Tuesday 7th September (subject to any restrictions of course) and promises to be the key showcase event for GB wines and the recent excellent vintages and releases.

The WineGB Awards will see judging taking place over the week of 7th June at Ashling Park Wine Estate, Sussex. Led by Co-Chairs Susie Barrie MW and Oz Clarke, the wines will go through a rigorous tasting process with the highest calibre of judges. The aim of the Awards is not only to celebrate excellence but to provide significant promotional opportunities for all the winners through an extensive social media campaign and supporting all stockists and resellers. The medal wins will be announced on Thursday 24th June (during English Wine Week). A trophy announcement and awards ceremony is planned and further details will be released in due course.

A number of dedicated social campaigns will also be rolled out over the year. Upcoming is a Valentine’s focus with a difference: #WineMyHeartAway is running in association with Susie Barrie MW and Peter Richards MW together with Majestic and encouraging followers and industry alike across their social channels (Instagram and Twitter) to share the first time they fell in love with wine. To celebrate International Women’s Day on 8th March, WineGB is teaming with Women in Wine London to run a series of Instagram Live interviews across that week until 15th March, featuring women from some of the many different areas of the Great British wine industry.

Comments Julia Trustram Eve, WineGB’s Marketing Manager: “Whilst last year was incredibly challenging for many of our members, the rise in retail and direct to consumer sales demonstrated that consumers are more clearly focussed on provenance, sustainability, buying from local producers – all of which our industry is proud to provide. Above all we want to set out a calendar of events and projects that focus on key consumer drivers and allows them and the trade to engage with this wonderful industry of ours, which is going through remarkable growth and bursting with confidence.

“We sincerely hope that the many tourism operations and our own trade tasting will be able to take place in person – we cannot wait to see everyone again and give the trade a chance to connect with our wines. Here’s to a great 2021.”

Further information – visit https://www.winegb.co.uk/trade/