Singapore’s Holiday Wine Buying Guide (1855 The Bottle Shop Selection)

It’s been almost a year since I attended my first UK wine fair – The Great New Zealand Wine Tasting held at Lindley Hall, London. For some mysterious reason, the universe eventually stirred me to Singapore’s Wakanui, a restaurant with a main focus on New Zealand’s beautiful food and wine. I finally settled in a place that benefits me in all kinds of ways and to which I hope to contribute greatly. One of those awesome benefits was the 1855’s Wine & Whisky Week Christmas Edition, Singapore’s largest wine & whisky event with over 500 labels from over 20 countries. I loved the concept – you come on Monday, try 30 wines, then you come on Thursday and try a totally different flight of 30 wines. This is how the organizers promote different brands and let wine lovers discover a huge chunk of the 1855 portfolio. Besides that, the fair offered 12 Masterclasses (I attended Macallan’s) and amazing discounts that should not have been missed. After tasting cca 100 samples, I cherry-picked a top 10 list as a buying guide in spirit of the upcoming holidays, enjoy! Continue reading “Singapore’s Holiday Wine Buying Guide (1855 The Bottle Shop Selection)”

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Grape Nomad’s Top 10 Cellar Picks of 2016

When reviewing 2016, I can’t help but think only one thing – what a shitty year for the world. Alan Rickman, David Bowie and Leonard Cohen died, Donald Trump became president of the US, refugee crises overflowed the news, people still think that sweet wines are cheap rubbish that should solely be paired with poor life decisions. Oh well, at least true wine lovers have been drinking some nice stuff to drown their sorrows and enter 2017 in style, like Kanye West did at the MTV Awards a few years back. But before you go anywhere and start analyzing the trends of next year (which you probably won’t follow), allow me to introduce you to the first Grape Nomad annual recap! Here, you’ll read about MY highest rated wines of 2016, wines that have blown me away with their sexiness and helped me rethink the complexity of this business. Because I decided to discover Italy in detail this year, you’ll see that their wines are pretty dominant in the selection. 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 2016”

Il Più Grande: The Art of Marchesi Antinori

The fact that every serious winelover knows at least one wine from this immense selection displays how big the Antinori brand actually is. Opened in 1385 (yes, you read it right), this winery developed its roots in beloved Florence (Tuscany, Italy) and is currently active in three other countries – Romania, Hungary and the US. However, it is most recognizable for its historic role of shaping one of the most famous Italian wine styles, the so-called Super Tuscans.

In 1971, Marchesi Antinori decided to stand up against Italian wine laws that allowed mixing white grape varieties with red, but forbade blending in international grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot (*facepalm*). He got stripped of his DOCG status, with the Italian government laughing in his face and assigning him the vino da tavola label (table wine, the lowest rank you can get in Italy). Our young hero did not wither and soon received a reward for this brave act – a recognition in the US press as a rebel with a cause. Today, his Tignanello for example, has a mere IGT status (regional wine), even though it meets all requirements for DOCG. This is a perfect symbol of dissent against the rigid Italian wine tradition that began 45 years ago and managed to launch Antinori in the crème de la crème of iconic brands today. Continue reading “Il Più Grande: The Art of Marchesi Antinori”