You may have noticed that I have become a bit of a weather obcessive so it is with some delight that I have been invited by the BBC in Leeds to take part in a programme called the Weather Show. It is presented by Paul Hudson who presents the weather on Look North and insists on showing a map of Europe and the Atlantic before focusing on the weather for Yorkshire and North Derbyshire. Over the past few days I have watched the Atlantic depressions pileing in over Portugal. The subject of this week’s show is wine and the weather and my co-guest is George Bowden a grape grower and wine maker form Leeds (Leventhorpe Vineyard). We are to taste our wines live on air and, being something of a secptic about producing wine so far north, I fully expected not to like his 2012 Madeleine Angevine. In the event it was rather delicious, well balanced and I have bought some for myself. Our discusson about wine and the weather was wine ranging and embraced climate change, the growing season, the risks of frost and hail and vintage variation. Growing grapes in Leeds and Portalagre had more in common than I ever realized. I rather appreciated George Bowden’s stoic attitude to the threat of spring frost in his vineyard: he goes away, hopes for the best and ignores it. There is really nothing you can do.
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