House Pour: A Real Guide to Pet-Nat

Pet-nat. The first time I tried this fizzy beverage I was under the impression that somebody poured me a glass of faulty wine that was still fermenting in the bottle. I wasn’t wrong. Well, at least for the fermentation part. On the other hand, it did smell like wet socks and horrendously rancid fruit, but the somm told me “that’s how it’s supposed to be”. Needless to say, I didn’t come back to drinking this for a while. But everything in life deserves a second chance. Turns out that that was just some overly enthusiastic hippie producing undrinkable rubbish. Today’s the day where shit gets serious. Welcome to House Pour, a guide that breaks down (not so) famous grapes and gets to the bottom of things by drinking (fo’ real). Continue reading “House Pour: A Real Guide to Pet-Nat”

House Pour: A Real Guide to Californian Pinot Noir

Hey you. Yeah, you. I heard you like Pinot. That’s why you’re reading this, aren’t you? You’ve had your fair share of NSG, Chambolle, Pommard, now you want to explore something new, just like the rest of us. But do you really think that Cali Pinot can live up to Burgundy’s established status? Is it all about sweet fruit flavors and milkshake texture? Are all the exceptional examples expensive af? Welcome to House Pour, a guide that breaks down (not so) famous grapes and gets to the bottom of things by drinking (fo’ real). Continue reading “House Pour: A Real Guide to Californian Pinot Noir”

House Pour: A Real Guide to Italian Nebbiolo

“There are no small parts, only small actors”. I’m sure you’ve heard this expression before and while it’s adjustably applicable to acting, the wine world doesn’t tend to beat around the bush. Big grapes are big for a reason. You commit to them properly and know your shit in both vineyard and winery, you’re in for some mind-altering experiences. Continue reading “House Pour: A Real Guide to Italian Nebbiolo”

Robert Parker’s Matter of Taste Singapore 2018: 25 Gems You Missed Out On

Let’s come to terms with the fact that Robert Parker is hands down the most influential wine critic of our day and age. Period. You may not like him, you may think he’s overrated, you may not care at all, but one thing is for sure – he created a cult and, in that cult, his word (or points) comes first. After that comes the Bible. Continue reading “Robert Parker’s Matter of Taste Singapore 2018: 25 Gems You Missed Out On”

House Pour: A Real Guide to Australian Shiraz

What a better way to start your grape education than with Australian Shiraz? Sure you can call a bunch of friends over and have them bring obscure bottles of Müller Thurgau or Agiorgitiko, but you’ll just end up confusing the shit out of them and scaring them away. It’s like bringing John Donne to your first poetry club session – yeah, you romanticized about him during your useless four-year English studies, but that doesn’t mean that Dave over there should be shunned for “resting his eyes a bit”. Start out slow and then jump into your occult fantasies a few months in or you’ll have people concluding that their 9-dollar bottle from 7Eleven is not that bad after all. Continue reading “House Pour: A Real Guide to Australian Shiraz”

Filling in the Blancs: Joanne Ahearne MW

Working with wine for almost ten years, I can with certainty say that all your beliefs about this tiny alcoholic microcosmos being full of pretentious pricks and certified know-alls stay true even in 2018. As a newbie, you can roam through restaurants, wine bars and shops for years and never know who’s selling you bullshit, until you get matter into your own hands, in this case matter being – books. What you can do with knowledge is unmeasurable. It gives you the opportunity to wear a cape and fight off soul-sucking demons, staying true to the ones that need that spark of hope in a world full of darkness. One of those heroes is British-born, Croatian-based Joanne Ahearne. Continue reading “Filling in the Blancs: Joanne Ahearne MW”

Dolcetto in the Streets, Shiraz in the Sheets: A Threesome Blind Tasting

With World Cup 2018 finally under way, a lot has been put to the test both on the field and outside of it. The underdogs are ploughing their way through the group stage, bringing fame to their name, which is, as a result, sparking up extra interest for this beautiful game called football. The blind tasting held at Praelum Wine Bistro pulled a similar parallel with three “teams”– France, Italy and South Africa – fighting for the jewel in the crown.

As with many competitions, there are a lot of theories surrounding them. Some of them are utter bollocks, others prove a point. If you’re in this trade, you’re probably familiar with that guy you meet a house party and his classic line – “I saw this video on Youtube where experts couldn’t recognize the difference between a cheap and expensive wine. SO WINE TASTING IS BULLSHIT FOR SNOBS!!1” I never understood why people are so aggressive when it comes to wine. Yes, there is a lot of snobbery in our circles, but there is way more fun and never-ending room for discussion. The ultimate validation for that is a spot on blind tasting held on a hot, sunny afternoon with 20 people coming together from all spheres of life and engaging in a fun activity. Reasons are different. I met this guy who works as an accountant and is part of a French tasting group. He came to refresh his memory of Bordeaux. Another gentleman was from a logistics team who came to meet people of similar interests and support his favourite wine bar. I came to practice my detection skills for the final WSET Diploma exam coming up in a few months. Tasted nine wines, got six right (we had to guess the country). Below are my notes and a more detailed explanation on the process of this particular blind tasting. Continue reading “Dolcetto in the Streets, Shiraz in the Sheets: A Threesome Blind Tasting”

Ten Reasons to Visit 1855 The Bottle Shop Wine & Whisky Week

If you had to choose one wine & spirits event in Singapore that includes plenty of booze, interesting people and loads of fun, don’t look further than 1855 The Bottle Shop’s Wine and Whisky Week. The fair opens its doors to public twice a year (woo-hoo!) in Suntec’s East Atrium (Level 1) and offers over 500 labels for tasting and purchasing. Just like for the holiday edition, I wasn’t strong on the spirits, so it is my unselfish duty to guide you through my top ten wine picks. If this isn’t enough for ya, hop on by during the last weekend of May and give your palate a test drive through some stunning liquids. Continue reading “Ten Reasons to Visit 1855 The Bottle Shop Wine & Whisky Week”

Prowein 2018: 10 Wines Worth Travelling Across The Globe For

More than a month has gone by since my first Prowein experience and not a day passes that I don’t sit down and read a few lines of my tasting notes. It was truly difficult to make a top 10 list from 6870 exhibitors from 64 countries, but I succeeded somehow. On the side note, 60.000 people visited Prowein 2018 in just three days! Incredible. My attention was drawn by exotic wine countries such as Brazil, but I unfortunately did not hang out with tanned Brazilian girls. On the other hand, I did try some very nice wines that were skillfully made. Wines from Chinese regions such as Ningxia, Penglai, Changli and Shacheng made up for all the exhibitors’ clumsiness (some of them didn’t even know how to open a bottle). With this, the Chinese have proven to us that they will be knocking on doors and taking names very soon.

The most memorable experience was definitely the Mundus Vini Tasting Zone which had all its gold medalists on display. I can say with certainty that I’ve tried some of the best wines EVER here. With only three days, it was impossible to see and taste everything I wanted to, so I concentrated solely on wines that I couldn’t try back home. I admit, the love for the Old World was too strong, so at times I found myself tasting some incredible stuff from France, Spain and Italy as well. Here’s my top 10! Continue reading “Prowein 2018: 10 Wines Worth Travelling Across The Globe For”

Grape Nomad’s Top 10 Cellar Picks of 2017

It’s that time of the year again, time to recap my favourite wines of 2017, a year that had a huge personal impact on me. It flew by so quickly that I don’t even remember which events significantly influenced the world (except for Kim Jong-un’s missile craziness and Trump’s rants to that). What I do remember is that I tasted some D-O-P-E wines that would make it in the top 10 life-changing list easily. Unlike the 2016 cellar picks, this year was a lot more diverse and tightly knitted to exciting stuff that happened to me along the way. As a side-note, these are not bottles necessarily released during the year, nor are the scores something you have to blindly follow. I urge you to explore, be open and enjoy whatever gems you find from these top 10 picks. Continue reading “Grape Nomad’s Top 10 Cellar Picks of 2017”

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