Latest On The Circular

Meet the Friend: Angela Muir MW

Angela Muir
Angela Muir MW has been working in the wine trade since 1970, right from her first job on leaving Bristol University. Ten years later she became a Master of Wine, in fact one of the first female MWs, and has been a respected consultant to wine producers and companies ever since, establishing her own consultancy company, Cellarworld, in 1993. Amanda Barnes interviews her about her experience in the...
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Book Review: The Book of St John

Many members will be well-aware of Circle Member Trevor Gulliver and his partner Fergus Henderson's popular St John restaurant in London, where offal and the humble pig took the centre stage, and the wine selection came a close second. Earlier this year, they released their book, The Book of St John, which reflects their 'nose-to-tail' ethos of holistic eating (using every part of the animal) and ...
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Soaking up sake

Ever the keen learner, on his cruise to the Far East, Jochen Erler takes time out to sip some sake at source. As a professional taster of wine and spirits, with some experience as a beer taster in competitions, I have long been intrigued by the similarities between producing beer and whisk(e)y on the one hand, and sake (rice wine) and its distillate on the other. Both have water and grain as thei...
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Clearly Bardolino

Meg Houston Maker finds there’s something special about both the ever-changing light and the clear-eyed wines of Bardolino, which come from where the mountains meet the lake. A version of this article was originally published on Terroir Review. There’s something about the light in Bardolino. In the morning it’s soft and tremulous, shimmering in the vaporous mists rising from Lake Garda. By midday...
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A look at 2019 Chianti Classico

Chianti wine region
John Salvi MW attends Chianti Classico Collection 2020 and crafts his conclusions on the 2019 vintage by digging deep into the factors that have delivered a generous yield of wonderful wines.  A record number of producers turned out at the 2020 edition of Chianti Classico Collection, and more than ever before showed their new vintage – the 2019. There were 56 producers pouring 2019s at the Stazio...
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Pack up your bottles in a bag in box?

Jancis Robinson Circle of Wine Writers member on wine bottles and climate change
In these times of climate crisis, Jancis Robinson MW asks whether glass should be dismissed, while alternative packaging is pursued, as the wine industry grapples with its considerable carbon emissions conundrum. A version of this article was first published at Wine should come in a glass bottle, right? Actually, wrong if wine drinkers want to do their bit for the planet’s reso...
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On a mission for Malbec

Malbec clones
Amanda Barnes reports on one winemaker's mission to discover the best Malbec clones in Argentina, and how it has taken over 8,000 cuttings to get there. Originally published in South America Wine Guide. Aldo Biondolillo hasn’t taken his mission to find the best Malbec clones in Argentina lightly. In 2000, he took 8000 different Malbec clones from around the country (mainly from pre-phylloxera vin...
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Meet the Friend: Nicky Forrest, Phipps

Nicky Forrest, Phipps
Nicky Forrest's love for wine has brought her not only into the world of wine PR but into the vineyard as a grower too, as Amanda Barnes learns in this interview. As MD of Phipps, Nicky has worked on several landmark campaigns for wine brands and producers and she shares some of her experiences in the drinks business. What are your earliest memories in wine?  My first memories are from the late ...
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Meet the Member: Tanya Mann

Tanya Mann was born in Russia and after a decade living in London, she has returned to run a few wine projects, details of which she shares with Amanda Barnes in this interview. She also talks about her first taste of fine wine and how the Russian wine market is changing. Tanya is a Member of the Circle of Wine Writers and currently serving on the Committee. Tell us about where you grew up and ...
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Living it up at Livres en vignes

Jon Wyand shows what to expect on bringing out a wine book with a French publisher as he goes under a hedonistic house arrest at Château du Clos de Vougeot. One benefit of struggling through the production of a wine book with a French publisher is that you’ll probably be invited to Livres en Vignes, when it has been published. It’s a kind of house arrest at Château du Clos de Vougeot, where you s...
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