You may have read me ranting about the Bordeaux primeurs campaign and how little sense it makes to me.
My words were quoted in the Financial Times the other day, along with opinions from a number of the larger UK merchants. You can view the article here.
And Bordeaux was also the theme of another tasting I attended the day after SITT: the annual opportunity to check out all the newly bottled cru bourgeois clarets, in this case the 2015s.
The reputation of 2015 as a vintage in Bordeaux is pretty well established, yet this was a chance to remind oneself that it wasn't a uniform thing in terms of either style or quality.
Cru Bourgeois is a denomination specific to the Médoc, the Graves/Pessac-Léognan and St Emilion being classified separately. And I was selective, since there were hundreds of wines laid out in three separate rooms at the British Academy in Carlton House Terrace off Pall Mall; I suspected that any attempt to taste them all would have rendered me insensible, spitting or no.
Thus I stuck to wine names I knew and got away with penning 38 notes in total. For some reason, I had been expecting an easy time of it; suspected that 2015 might be a vintage in which one could buy such wines willy-nilly and end up with something most rewarding in one's glass.
This tasting shone a light on the weaknesses of 2015. For example, the northern Médoc suffered from a degree of rain at inopportune moments in the growing season and the wines here are certainly weaker.
There is, however a great deal to like. Margaux was one of the absolute hot-spots of 2015, thus I was pleased to find one of my pet châteaux - La Tour de Mons - in a very pretty state, exhibiting pot pourri amongst crunchy red fruits.
Other wines by which I was especially impressed include: Paloumey; de Malleret; Larose-Trintaudon; Hanteillan; Malescasse; Beaumont; Cambon La Pelouse; Charmail; Tour du Haut Moulin; Fonréaud; Fourcas Borie; Deyrem Valentin; Le Boscq.