I bet you think writing blogs is easy – just tap out whatever first comes into your head and that’s it! Nothing could be further from the truth, especially in a shared blog. If you are the sole blogger you can be relaxed but on a shared blog, especially with four very distinguished colleagues I can assure you the pressure is on.
The pressure increases through Monday as the midnight deadline approaches, especially today which has been busy – a Circle of Wine Writers committee meeting this afternoon followed by the the CWW’s annual party held with great panache this year at the Swiss Ambassador’s residence in a swanky part of London.
There was some excellent Swiss wine to try this evening – fine Pinot Noirs and some intriguing Syrahs. Colleagues told me I should have tasted the whites mainly Chasselas and Petite Arvine. I did, however, taste a very attractive and nicely balanced sweet wine from Jean-René Germainer (www.jrgermanier.ch) called Mitis-Amigne de Vétroz (Réserve) 2009 and made from 100% Amigne. Too many foolish UK wine merchants would probably insist on calling this a dessert wine or nearly as bad a sticky and then wonder why it is difficult to sell sweet wine in the UK! The 2009 Mitis-Amigne would make a fine aperitif, would be good with cheese and a range of other dishes – perhaps pork in a rich sauce – but I would be amazed if it works well with most desserts, whose sweetness would be likely to emphasise the wine’s acidity and hide the sugar.
After an absence of a number of years from the British market, Swiss wine appears to be making a new push in the UK. Switzerland will also be hosting next year’s Digital Wine Communicators Conference in Montreux.
José Vouillamoz – one of the co-authors of the award winning Wine Grapes brings me neatly onto the petition to preserve the collection of grape varieties at the Domaine de Vassal. Signatures to the petition have now topped 4000 and will, I hope continue to grow. José is fairly relaxed about the collection feeling that it will have to move at some point due to the damage of rising sea levels and the area being flooded with sea water – something that hasn’t happened since 1949 but may do at some point. Nor does he think that grafting the collection onto American rootstock would be very disadvantageous. He does, however, agree that it is important to show concern, which is why he and Jancis Robinson MW signed the petition. I trust that his fairly optimistic view is well founded. Certainly if you haven’t yet signed the petition (http://www.petitions24.net/defense_vassal) then please do so.
We have now passed the midnight hour with more pressure building by the half minute and me still wondering what I am going to write about this week…