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. He tells me that he will only sell wine to restaurants that he knows will pay and there are many on Madeira with severe financial difficulties at the moment. I can identify with this as we have one restaurant that owes us over €2,000 euros and is not paying up. Sales have gone so well on the island that Francisco orders another 30 cases but we just don’t have the wine so we supply 15.
19 - 20 An outstanding wine (*****)
17 – 18 An excellent wine in its class, highly recommended (****)
15 - 16 A good wine, with much to recommend it (***)
13 - 14 An enjoyable but simple, straightforward wine (**)
10 – 12 A very ordinary wine without faults but with no great merit (*)
8 - 10 Disagreeable (no stars)
Below 8 Faulty