Tim Atkin | Master of Wine

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10th Jan 2010

Beyond the Big Six grape varieties

by Tim Atkin

"I love Chablis, but I can't stand Chardonnay." "I hate Sancerre, but I adore Sauvignon Blanc." You used to hear such comments all the time, even from people who claimed to know about wine, but they are rare these days. The major grape... Read more

 

20th Dec 2009

Christmas Day chez Atkin

by Tim Atkin

Forget about turkey, stuffing and brandy butter: the Atkin family Christmas will have a Spanish flavour this year. There are two reasons for this, neither related to the London location of the meal itself. The first is that I've just bought a... Read more

 

13th Dec 2009

Best fizz of 2009

by Tim Atkin

With 12 days to go until Christmas, I'd like to propose a yuletide toast to Professor Gérard Liger-Belair of the University of Reims. He it was who proved earlier this year what many of us have long suspected: that sparkling wines are... Read more

 

7th Dec 2009

The Atkins. My wines of the year for 2009

by Tim Atkin

First, the good news. Not since 1990 has the world enjoyed such a consistently promising vintage as it did in 2009. The châteaux owners of Bordeaux may be leading the field in the hype stakes -- this will be the third "vintage of the... Read more

 

7th Dec 2009

Will this end cheap alcohol deals?

by Tim Atkin

It was a neat, if unfortunate coincidence that on the day the Scottish government published its alcohol bill, a small brewery in Fraserburgh released a head banger beer called Tactical Nuclear Penguin. BrewDog claims that its imperial stout... Read more

 

20th Nov 2009

Matt Skinner and a difference of vintages

by Tim Atkin

How much store do you set by tasting notes? Would a fulsome description of a Kiwi Sauvignon Blanc -- combine mouth watering, zingy, tangy, nettley, gooseberryish, minerally, etc in the order of your choice -- affect your purchasing decision?... Read more

 

15th Nov 2009

King of the hill

by Tim Atkin

A visitor to Angelo Gaja's winery in Barbaresco fell to his knees on a recent tasting tour and tried to kiss the great man's hands. "Please get up," Gaja told him, "I'm not the Pope." He may not be the Supreme Pontiff, but Gaja is a big name... Read more

 

8th Nov 2009

Turn on the lights

by Tim Atkin

Where are we to find such bottles? It's harder than you might think, particularly if you want to drink something at 12% or below. White wines from the cooler parts of viticultural Europe, such as the Loire Valley, northern Italy, the Mosel... Read more

 

8th Nov 2009

First Quench hits the wall

by Tim Atkin

Remember the date. For anyone who works in the booze trade, not least those of you who are employed by First Quench Retailing, October 29th 2009 could turn out to be one of those "where were you when the heard the news?" moments. The... Read more

 

8th Nov 2009

Christmas reds and whites

by Tim Atkin

WHITE   2008 Errazuriz Chardonnay, Casablanca Valley (£4.99 each for two, 13.5%, Majestic). Reduced from £7.99, which makes it a stunning deal, this is an easy drinking, peach and citrus fruit Chilean Chardonnay with a... Read more