News in brief

16 May, 2008

Adelaide Hills winery Nepenthe has produced its first vintage of the Spanish grape variety Albariño. Viticulturist Murray Leake said the grape was "still very much in the experimental phase", and added: "The 2008 vintage will give us a clearer understanding of its typical expression in this region."

The 2005 vintage of Calvet Reserve red has been released by supplier Les Grands Chais de France. It is the first time the Bordeaux blend has featured Cabernet Franc alongside Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Rioja producer Bodegas Darien will be running sampling at Tapas Fantasticas, a festival of tapas and Spanish lifestyle in Brick Lane, east London, on June 28 and 29. The Darien stand will feature Tempranillo and rosé wines form 2006, plus Crianza 2004 and Reserva 2002. The event is sponsored by Wines from Rioja.

English wines from Ridgeview, Hush Heath, Bookers, Camel Valley, Sharpham Estate and Three Choirs are being sampled at Vinopolis in London until May 19 as a preview event for English Wine Week, which runs from May 24 to June 1.

Anne Blois has joined French wine brand Chamarré as its

commercial marketing director. She replaces

Regis d'Indy. Blois was previously with the Lurton brothers winemaking team as commercial director, and has also worked for Courvoisier, J Moreau and Marie Brizard.

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Talking terroir

When Bordeaux was in fashion, it seemed almost logical that we should fetishise winemakers. Here were people responsible for brilliant acts of blending, across large estates and multiple grape varieties, including superstars such as cabernet sauvignon and merlot. These days, fashion has moved on and pinot noir is ascendant. As a result, the star of the winemaker has fallen and we find ourselves following a new star in the sky: terroir.

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