So initially we planned the trip to be 80 days around the wine world of the southern hemisphere. It has taken us slightly longer than expected but has been worth every additional second. It really has been a crazy, wonderful and insightful trip and perhaps most importantly we knew within the first few days, a totally justified journey. Tasting wines, visiting wineries and meeting people in the local industries we would have never met waiting for them to arrive in London. These people are the real people behind the wines of these regions, these people are the real people to tell us what is going on right now in their regions, where their industry is, where they want it to go and where hopefully we can help them. The quality has been outstanding with highlights in every region we explored.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the people I met on the trip, for their hospitality and time. Your wisdom, passion and utter dedication is a total inspiration for anyone who enjoys wine and is interested in seeking out the huge variety and quality this world has to offer. Perhaps this is the biggest lesson I learnt on my trip, the true variety of quality wine out there, wine with real regional quality. For too long the ‘new world’ wines have been seen as a cheaper alternative to European wine, that offers consistency at a more affordable price at the expense of its regional attributes, qualities and identity. For too long unremarkable wine shipped in bulk to the UK has been detrimental to the bigger picture and a much more interesting industry of each region. While consistency and price is a great benefit to regions whose weather is much more predictable than some European regions, I feel it has overshadowed the variety on offer and the potential reached in certain specific areas of these regions where, like Europe, micro-climates offer wines of a world class standard.
On arriving back into the UK the rest of the bespoke team are very excited by the wealth of potential we have at our fingertips and now is the time to sift through what we have found, what looks feasible for certain markets and to approach the UK wine trade and find out their ‘bespoke’ needs!