OATLEY

Vineyard

TASTING THE 2018s

Saturday, 23 February 2019

Wow! Enjoyed tasting our 2018s...

Last Tuesday we drove the hour to Steve Brooksbank’s winery near Shepton Mallet to taste our 2018s after their last racking. It was, you may remember, the absolute best year for English growers in memory. And our memory goes back further than most, to 1985. We’ve been looking forward eagerly to tasting the wines since harvest.

No disappointment either, as you can see in Steve the winemaker (left) and Iain the grower’s faces.

The Madeleine is longer and fuller than usual, with more tropical fruit, but less green freshness. Aficionados of our crisp green “Jane’s” May be less impressed, but it is in truth a more distinguished wine which will complement food rather than a summer quaffer. Not that there’s anything wrong with summer quaffing....

The Kernling is the gem though. It didn’t need to be deacidified, for only the 2nd time ever, and is pure, clean and elegant. We’ll aim to cellar it for at least 2 years to let the flavours develop but it promises to be really special.

The wine will be bottled mid March and come home on a pallet lorry. Lots of it so we need to reorganise the wine store ready. And trim the overhanging trees in our tunnel-like lane so the lorry can get through.

And we have some wonderful family news. Our daughter-in-law Paula, with our elder son Ned, gave birth safely to twins at the end of January in Southampton. Edith and Albert. All doing really well. So happy for them and in awe of how well they are coping. So from nought to three grandchildren in 15 months! Liv in Copenhagen is now toddling and starting to rise to the challenge of learning to talk in three languages (Danish at nursery, Norwegian with mamma and English with pappa). Hope to see all three cousins together at Oatley before too long.