Blind rating Bordeaux vintage

‘It was the Pessac-Léognan whites that really cheered us up. Here were the sure-fire successes of the vintage’

What’s in an appellation?

‘Quality-conscious wine producers would love to see those who run the Rioja region acknowledge different quality levels’

How to be fine at wine

‘The main point of wine is to give pleasure, not to generate social confusion and angst’

Vintage value

‘The 2014 burgundies feature exceptional whites and many reds that will provide considerable pleasure’

Grenache’s ripening

‘An exciting new style of wines is being made from old Garnacha vines’

Burgundy 2014

‘White burgundies are the real stars of 2014. Some shone particularly brightly’

Rhône comforts

‘St-Péray is now the source of some of the most interesting white wine made in France’

Sweet somethings

‘This wood-aged vin doux naturel tastes of almonds and orange peel and would go well with a not-too-sweet Christmas pudding’

12 shades of white

‘Look carefully and you can find whites that have benefited from considerable bottle age at bargain prices’

Etna’s explosive reds

‘Many of the best Etna reds seem to have a suggestion of volcanoes or lava about them — a sort of warm earthiness’

A toast to England

‘England’s best sparkling wines now offer much to those who thought only champagne would do’

New model Pomerol

‘Wine lovers would be surprised at the fluidity of the boundaries of the various Bordeaux châteaux’

The rise of the sommelier

‘I was told that nowadays some New York diners choose a restaurant on the basis of the sommelier’

Mind the culture gap

‘Given how dependent Bordeaux now is on China — it accounts for a quarter of exports — it seems strange that gulfs in understanding persist’

Bordeaux’s white hope

‘We may see a revival in the fortunes of white wines — not least because whites are more food-friendly than heavy reds’

Bottle v magnum

‘Perhaps there is no point buying magnums unless you are going to hang on to them for a very, very long time’

How to read a wine list

‘I qualified as a Master of Wine back in 1984, but I never hesitate to quiz a sommelier about how various possible choices are tasting’

Australian Chardonnay

‘Such progress has been made that I am now looking for serious alternatives to fine white burgundy in the cooler reaches of Australia’

A village affair

‘The white burgundies of Domaine Coche-Dury are the most sought-after in the world’

To Syrah with love

‘Even some Australian producers have started to call their wines Syrah rather than Shiraz’

ABOUT JANCIS

Jancis RobinsonJancis Robinson has been writing and broadcasting about wine since 1975, and has been the FT’s wine correspondent since 1989. Her principal occupation nowadays is www.jancisrobinson.com but she is also responsible for many of the standard reference books on wine including The Oxford Companion to Wine and, with Hugh Johnson, The World Atlas of Wine.

She qualified as a Master of Wine, the first from outside the wine trade, in 1984, and regularly judges and lectures about wine around the world. She has presented several award-winning television programmes including Jancis Robinson’s Wine Course and Vintners’ Tales, and is a professional narrator.

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