The Berry Bros & Rudd 2008 en primeur tasting last week in London threw up as many questions as it answered. For example…
1) Why were the 2008s better than the 2007s at some estates whereas at nearby properties the opposite was true?
2) Why were the 2008s more expensive than the 2007s at some estates whereas at nearby properties the opposite was true?
3) Why don’t some of those making white wines push to be able to include more interesting grapes in their blends? Couldn’t help but feel that some minerally Chardonnay or – a little closer to home – some Petit Manseng would have been more of benefit than the slightly Cherie Blair-like tones of Sauvignon Blanc.
4) Why are there more people wearing ties at Bordeaux tastings than Rhone tastings?
But one things I was pleased to see was this…
In other words, two very decent wines that bother to list their grape make-up on the back label. Purists will gag at the thought of claret being reduced to a formula of grape varieties, but for a normal person not reared on French wine – and among regular wine drinkers, they’re probably now the majority in England – just being able to see that a wine is mostly Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot is going to make them more likely to select a bottle of Bordeaux than if it said simple Pessac-Leognan, Moulis, Pomerol or even just simple Bordeaux Rouge.