Events and Tastings

Join me with the Jura Book in London, Geneva and Amsterdam

Since the arrival of the printed books in mid-March and dealing with the logistics of sending them out to people from over 25 countries around the world, life has been somewhat exciting. The comments on the book’s quality have been very gratifying after these months of very hard work. Thank you again for all your support in spreading the word.

Jura Wine book by Wink Lorch

If you don’t have it, this is what the cover looks like. Click it to buy!

Wine educator and consultant Richard Bampfield MW wrote on Twitter:

“Thoroughly enjoyed first dip into Jura Wine from @WineTravel. Great knowledge and enthusiasm, refreshed by Wink’s tell-tale sense of fun. “

Wine writer Tom Stevenson wrote on Facebook:

“Just received my copy and I cannot put it down, even though I should be writing copy and clearing my desk for 4 weeks away. It’s not just uniquely informative, but beautifully written. A tour de force Wink!”

Writer and editor Susanna Forbes tweeted:

“Loving the look of your book @WineTravel . Can’t wait to dive in. Love the scene setting & people who matter bits … and photography is inspiring”

And as the book wings its way around the world, I’ve received fine comments from Tokyo, Netherlands, Boston, Australia, California, Ireland and many points in-between. Enough trumpet blowing, there is only left to say that just in time I sneaked in an entry to this year’s Louis Roederer Writers Awards so here’s hoping the judges like it every bit as much.

Jura wine book signing

At Le Nez dans le Vert ©Brett Jones

Signings and presentations
Following a signing baptism in Gevingey in the Jura for the well-worth-visiting organic wine fair Le Nez dans le Vert, my signing skills are now warmed up and I’m looking forward to doing more, especially in English! Several French visitors bought the book, but it was also wonderful to meet so many worldwide fans of Jura wines who had made their way especially to attend this show, and to see their pleasure at being able to delve deeper into what makes these wines what they are.

The wines that I found time to taste from the 30 organic producers at the tasting were ever-better than in previous years. The only worry is the small quantity of wine available and the fact that the vines this year are so far in advance that everyone is now scared of possible spring frost creating a catastrophic 3rd small vintage in a row. Surely this can’t happen?

The Real Wine Fair, Tobacco Dock, London – 13 April (consumers) and 14 April (trade)
The organisers of the Real Wine Fair have offered me a table at which I can sell the books, shared with the publishers of the innovative magazine Noble Rot (by chance, edition #4 will feature the Jura). I will offer the books for 10% off the usual price, so at £22.50 for payment by cash or UK cheque only. If you already have a book, please feel free to bring it along for me to sign. The London Marathon streams nearby on Sunday but don’t let this prevent you from coming to taste a huge selection of mainly organic wines from around the world. There will of course be one or two interesting Jura wines, kindly provided by Doug of Caves de Pyrène, available to taste on our table, so please come by.

I will also be conducting a seminar and tasting of five Jura wines at 3.30pm on Monday afternoon.

Tasting with Wiine.Me in Geneva – 24 April (consumers)
Together with the new Geneva-based wine club Wiine.Me I will be selling the books and offering around five wines to taste during  a convivial evening. The event will take place at Le Comptoir wine bar from 7pm. Contact me for more details.

Jura Wine trade tasting in London – 14 May (trade only)
There will be 20 producers present for the Jura trade tasting at Chandos House. I will be conducting an introductory seminar as last year at 11.30am and at 3pm with seven wines (essential to book). At 1pm we will be raising a glass of Crémant to celebrate the book and I very much hope that some key players who helped with the book will be with me. Contact Mandarin Communications to RSVP.

Tastings and presentations in the Netherlands – 1 and 2 June (mainly trade)
I shall be giving a presentation and tasting for the prestigious Wine and Food Association of the Netherlands after their annual Grand Prix Saint Hubert tasting competition, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. Books will be available for sale and signing there. The following day, three key Jura wine importers join together for a small trade tasting of Jura wines in Amsterdam, where I will also be present and giving a presentation. For more information, contact Olivier Schutte of de Geluksdruif.

Jura Wine bookshop

In very good company at Athenaeum, Beaune

Buying the book and reviews
The best place to buy the book for international delivery is on my website Wine Travel Media (but be patient, it may take one or two weeks for delivery depending where you are) – sold at the cover price (plus a small extra for shipping outside Europe), if you buy here this particularly helps support my hard work. Contact me directly for trade purchases of five or more copies.

If you prefer to buy through Amazon, it is currently only on Amazon.co.uk through Marketplace but that is for delivery internationally too – please add a review there if you can. If anyone can recommend a good distributor based in the USA I would be interested in contacting them.

In the Jura wine region the book is now available through local book shops and tourist offices which will attract a wider audience, I hope. And in Beaune it is stocked at the amazing wine book shop Athenaeum, opposite the Hospice.

If you are a writer or blogger who doesn’t already have the book and wants to review it, please contact me to discuss.

And finally, whilst at Le Nez dans le Vert, my long-standing sommelier friend Christophe Menozzi, now at the Château de Germigny came by to see me and joined me for a TV interview for local French TV. You can see the TV clip (in French) here.

 

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Book offer and Tasting Dates for the Diary

Exciting news – the Jura Wine book is at the printer now and will be available at the end of March. It’s looking great and I am very happy with it. Do not miss the special offer to pre-order with a 10% discount and free delivery in Europe (£5 outside), which runs until the end of Wednesday 5th March.

Kickstarter supporters will receive their books first, then those who pre-ordered. It’s the fastest way to receive the book as it will not be available on Amazon right away. After 5th March, the price will go up to normal cover price. Pre-order the book at Wine Travel Media.

The final tally was 352 pages with 146,000 words and 253 images including original maps, explanatory diagrams and some stunning photography by Mick Rock and others. There are profiles of 100 Jura wine producers, a wealth of solid information along with historical and current stories of the people who matter in the region. There has never been such a comprehensive book on Jura wine in any language.

Jura wine book

The final contents of Jura Wine by Wink Lorch

Jura Wine tastings around the world with and without me!

BUDAPEST 2nd March: This weekend I am at the VinCE wine event at the Corinthia Hotel in lovely Budapest. I shall be presenting eight Jura wines in a workshop this Sunday at 1.30pm – if you happen to be nearby there are some tickets left and it is a great show to come to anyway. I have prepared a Powperpoint that includes many photos from the book, so hopefully Jura Life by Powerpoint rather than the usual ‘death by Powerpoint’.

LE NEZ DANS LE VERT, Gevingey, Jura 23rd and 24th March: The annual tasting of the organic growers in the Jura takes place this year in the south of the region in Gevingey in the Sud Revermont, just south of Lons-le-Saunier. This will be my first appearance WITH the book, signing and selling them, and I’m very excited about this. Hoping also to sneak off to taste some of the wonderful wines with around 30 producers, including a couple of new ones.

USA/CANADA 14th – 17th April: Eighteen Jura producers will be travelling to the USA and Canada for professional trade tastings held in Chicago (14th) New York (15th), Montreal (16th) and Toronto (17th). Details and invitations from Vincent Lafortune of Quebec. I will post more information regarding invitations when I have it.
As yet, I am not due to attend these tastings for book signings, although I would like to attend, the logistics and costs are proving difficult.

LONDON/UK 14th May: Hang out the flags! London is yet again honoured with a trade tasting of Jura wines and I will be conducting seminars and signing/selling my books too. It will be organised by Mandarin Communications and more details will emerge soon. So, please save the date and I look forward to seeing you there.

I should be coming to Hamburg at the end of April/early May to conduct a Jura tasting and if possible I would like to link this with a tasting and book signing in Copenhagen (get in touch if you can help). Amsterdam in early June is possible too. More details as they emerge.

See you soon for a taste of Jura wine and thank you for your support! In the meantime, here is an amateur video I shot when I received the colour proofs of the book…

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International Jura wine news for early spring 2013

Hampered so often by either snowy or very wet weather these first months of the year, if only they could finish the pruning the Jura producers would surely have a spring in their step. Positive news stories abound especially for those who export. Looking at statistics for year ending July 2012, exports had reached 7 per cent, the highest ever figure.

Marquis d'Angerville

Marquis Guillaume d’Angerville and oenologist François Duvivier ©Wink Lorch

Burgundians create Domaine du Pélican
Last month I was among the first outsiders to taste from barrel the future Domaine du Pélican wines from Montigny-les-Arsures in the Arbois AOC. This is the new venture from the highly respected Volnay estate Domaine Marquis d’Angerville who purchased ten hectares of vines last year. Its first wines are therefore from 2012, mostly Chardonnay and Savagnin, but with some reds too. The quality is looking really good and I was able to share the news with subscribers to Jancis Robinson’s Purple Pages. Here is a link to the PDF of the article headed “A (famous) new name in Jura” where you can read all about the background to the purchase and prospects for the estate.

First Jura wine tasting for professionals in London
On the 14th May the first ever Jura tasting will be held for wine trade and press in Central London, the venue will be confirmed soon. Hosted by the CIVJ, the regional wine promotion organisation of Jura, there will be 25 producers attending. These range from a couple of very large producers with no current UK importers, through to some well-known names imported in a small way, overall a good selection of excellent estates big and small. On the provisional list, I can count at least ten producers who work organically or are in conversion. I will be there, conducting a masterclass during the event and will post more details on a page here, when details shape up.

Nez dans le Vert logoThird edition of Le Nez dans le Vert
Back in the region, the organic wine producers’ fair Le Nez dans le Vert will be taking place again at Domaine de la Pinte just outside Arbois on Sunday 23rd March (consumers) and Monday 24th March (trade). This year the fair has 34 producers, including some newcomers, and some who are newly converting to organic viticulture, a pre-requisite for showing wines at the fair. Amongst the new converts are two Pupillin growers who I’m delighted to see there, Jean-Michel Petit of Domaine de la Renardière and Julien Mareschal of Domaine de la Borde, who I wrote about, highlighting him as a new young grower in the region, for Wine Report, way back in the 2006 edition. Details of all the producers  and the event are shown on the official Nez dans le Vert website.

Discover Jura Wine – The Book
Just a reassurance here that I’m working hard on my Jura book, which will be named Discover Jura Wine, with a sub-title still to be finalised. I will be launching a Kickstarter project in the next couple of weeks to raise funds for a really professional publishing job, and this will serve also to create more awareness and provide even stronger motivation for me too. I am currently juggling with writing the book, some other much-needed work, and writing all too occasional blog posts, which of course also benefit the book. Do take a look at  the wine information pages on this site – I have recently added one on Crémant du Jura. I would love your support in spreading the word about my future book and raising funds for it too – the link above goes to my Kickstarter profile.

And finally… the 1774 turns up in London!
I discovered by chance that the bottle of 1774 Arbois Vin Jaune, auctioned by Christie’s last year (or it could be the other one, but I doubt it… still to be confirmed) is alive, well and awaiting a buyer in the locked vault of Hedonism Wines. This very new shop in Mayfair, London opened last year and appears from reports to be the ultimate expensive wine store. The centuries-old Jura wine is yours for just £72,000. My advice: yes, it will be an extraordinary, hedonistic experience, but honestly you could consider pledging just over 1% of that to my Kickstarter project, and receive a personalized tasting from me plus my book of course, as a ‘reward’. Watch this space for details.

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A celebration and tasting of Vin de Paille

For many decades on the nearest Sunday to the 22nd January, the village of Arlay in the Côtes du Jura has celebrated the patron Saint of wine growers, Saint Vincent to which its church is dedicated. A church service is followed by a procession of the Commanderie des Nobles Vins du Jura et du Comté in their red robes. From 2009, the village decided to add to the event by celebrating that nectar of the Jura, Vin de Paille, in an event named La Pressé du Vin de Paille. The fact that Arlay’s two principal producers, Château d’Arlay and Caves Bourdy are both well known for their Vin de Paille helped.

Commanderie Nobles Vins du Jura

Procession of the Commanderie des Nobles Vins du Jura ©Brett Jones

Compared with the huge event La Percée du Vin Jaune taking place this weekend, as always the first weekend of February, the Pressé is a modest village affair, albeit this year with a few hundred in attendance. The procession leading out of the Church was led by colourful locals dressed up in peasant gear, notably those wheeling ‘brûleurs de sarments’, metal braziers to burn the vine cuttings, and followed on by the dignitaries from the Commanderie. The actual pressing of a symbolic few crates of dried grapes took place twice in the day using an old wooden hopper and press mounted on a stage and the audience got to taste the resulting sticky grape juice. It is presided by Comte Alain de Laguiche and his winemaker Philippe Soulard of Château d’Arlay, with Jean-François and Jean-Philippe Bourdy of Caves Bourdy.

There was a good range of local food stands offering delicacies ranging from the local cheeses and hams, to snails, chestnuts, honey, nougat and cakes, as well as a clutch of Jura wine producer stands offering their complete ranges to taste. An inside exhibition provided some shelter from the inclement weather that arrived in the afternoon and offered an art exhibition, demonstration of barrel-making and a fine collection of local books with several authors present including Philippe Bétry, author of a recent excellent book on Vin de Paille.

A not-so-serious blind tasting
The guest of honour at this year’s event, inducted  into the Commanderie, was local Jura sommelier of Château de Germigney Christophe Menozzi, a good friend and real expert on Vin de Paille, who advised Philippe Bétry in his book on some fascinating food matches. In another nod to the Percée du Vin Jaune at which there is a rather serious competition to judge the best Vins Jaune, the ‘clavelinage’, Christophe had organised a little blind tasting of ten Vins de Paille, named a Paillevinage. The judges were mainly consumers (rather sweetly, those named Vincent were especially invited in honour of the day…) but I was able to join in, even though this was strictly an amateur competition to judge everyone’s favourite three wines.

Blind tastingChristophe gave advice to those new to tasting, especially blind tasting and suggested they spat – only I and the couple of vignerons present were seen to do this. But, really it was an extremely difficult selection to judge. From several  different vintages and all made from a different mix of grapes, with quite wildly varying sugar levels, it really did come down to me in choosing what I considered to be those with an attractive bouquet that on the palate showed the best balance, substance and harmony, and length.

So, drum roll …. My top three wines were L’Etoile Château de l’Etoile 2008, L’Etoile Château de Montbourgeau 2009 and Côtes du Jura Rousset-Martin Père et Fils 2006. Honourable mention should be given to the Arbois Jacques Tissot 2007 which was just behind in my scoring. The Montbourgeau was the overall 1st choice amongst the group of tasters.

To find out more about how Vin de Paille is produced, take a look at the Vin de Paille information page I have written for this site. For an excellent series of photographs by Jean-Michel Hugues dit Ciles, taken during the Pressé du Vin de Paille at Arlay this year, take a look at this this feature in the on-line Jura magazine Echos du Jura. And finally, enjoy this little video filmed by my partner Brett Jones.

And if you are coming to the Percée du Vin Jaune this coming weekend, for the fun, to taste or even to bid on that bottle of 1864 Château-Chalon, see you there among the 40,000 people expected, or seek me out via the Press Office.

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