Easter in Madeira. It is snowing in England and on the Portuguese mainland but here it is 25oC. Twenty cases of Pedra Basta have been shipped by our distributors in Funchal, Vinho de Paixão, a new company run by the wine maker at the Madeira Wine Company, Francisco Albuquerque. He has been assiduous in getting Pedra Basta listed by the right restaurants: the Villa Cippriani at Reids, Armazém do Sal, O Tosco, Abrigo de Pastor, Villa Café.
My Vineyard Blog March 2008
The same day as Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, presents his budget raising the duty on wine marks budburst in the vineyard. It takes the tax on a bottle of wine to over £2. Who knows how much tax we will have to pay on a bottle of the 2008 when it makes its way to the UK?
We tend to think (especially those of us in the wine business) that vineyards are a good thing. Those neat parallel rows of vines marching away into the distance bring order to the countryside. A vineyard is, after all, so much more photogenic than a field of potatoes or oilseed rape and the end product far more captivating than mash or margarine. But rows of vines can impact on the countryside in the same way as rows of suburban houses.