To London for our importer's (Richards Walford) annual portfolio tasting. We have our full range of wines on show for the first time: Pedra Basta 2009 alongside Duas Pedras 2010 and Pedra e Alma 2009. All the wine are showing really well, especially the 2009s. This is our best vintage todate and Pedra e Alma, despite being relatively closed and sullen, is well received by all those who tasted it. It has huge potential for the future I think. There seemed to be relatively few people at the tasting this year - there certainly wasn't the lunchtime crush of previous years - which I hope is not a sign of the times. Having said that all those who showed an interest in our wines were serious buyers or communicators.
Today I made history by conducting the first ever Portuguese tasting at the Traveller's Club in Pall Mall. The dinner was a sell out, attended by ambassadors, ex ambassadors and other luminaries. I put our wines against wines from the Douro and fortunately they all showed well against each other and I think that the stylistic differences between the two regions were very evident for all to see. We finished with Graham 1977, a vintage that I have been lukewarm about in the past but this wine is drinking beautifully at the moment.
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