Like most people I always sit and think about some well meaning resolutions at the beginning of each new year. Sure, do more exercise, use my juicer more and eat five a day inevitably feature in there somewhere but they aren't very interesting or original are they?
Sat back at work on the first Monday of the year overlooking a grey and dreary West London flyover I've realised that what is needed is more fun so this year I'm adding a few wine based resolutions to the fray. None of them are vital to life, health or general well-being but the first three might just get me through the last one still vaguely sane. Here goes......
1) Blasting Through Bordeaux
I'm setting myself a challenge to try a first wine from one of each of every of the Cru Classé chateaux of Bordeaux. Couple of caveats attached to this one. Its quite possible that this might take longer than a year just to ensure I'm not declared bankrupt before the end of 2015. Also, I may have to cheat and do some of them retrospectively- I can't imagine many Mouton Rothschild opportunities popping up any time soon.
2) Ringing in the Changes
It doesn't matter whether its a lesser known grape or a wine from an unusual country but there has to be something completely new each month so expect Juhfark from Azerbaijan or some such curiosity. I'm quite conscious that this could result in drinking some truly horrible concoctions but this will surely be tempered by the Bordeaux deliciousness above? I am distinctly tempted to try and find one wine made from every one of the 1368 grapes covered in Jancis Robinson's gargantuan tome "Wine Grapes" so consider that one as a quasi resolution for now - I don't want to bite off more than I can chew/ swallow.
|The Mighty Juhfark grape. Image: Budai Zoltan Wikipedia Commons|
3) Visiting More Wine Regions
Despite being essentially food and wine obsessed, the majority of my "big" holidays seem to result in me being bereft of decent wine for extended periods of time; the Arctic, Namibia and Sri Lanka being cases in point. 2015 is hereby decreed to be the year of the wine based minibreak. Burgundy, Bordeaux, Tuscany, Priorat and many others in between; I'm coming to get you!
|Hospices de Beaune, Burgundy. Photo:|
4) Getting the Diploma Done
After getting WSET 3 out of the way in 2014 I had mulled it over and decided to take a break from studying in 2015 rather than plunging straight into the diploma. Cue a long break over Christmas and the realisation that I'm never going to get less busy so maybe I should bite the bullet. To cut to the chase I'm signing up to start the distance learning version of the course. Two years of study, swilling, spitting (occasionally swallowing!) scribbling and sweating ahead of me but I think it will be worth it.
If I'm going to be doing this via distance learning then I'm going to need as much support and advice as possible from all you clever clogs' out there who have already completed it or who are undertaking it too as well as lots of tasting opportunities. Consider this a plea for any help and advice!
There. Its all down in writing now so I can't escape. If anyone fancies joining in on any of the above escapades let me know.......