Awards and citations:


1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for investdrinks.org

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award




Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Jane Anson: Wine Revolution – thw World's Best Organic, Biodynamic & Natural Wines



Jane Anson: Wine Revolution: The World's Best Organic, Biodynamic & Natural Wines, jacqui small, £25, US$35, Can $47.99

Jane Anson opens her book by citing the food revolution ushered in by the opening of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California in 1971. 

'The idea of buying locally, cooking with seasonal ingredients, supporting responsible farming has become so accepted as to barely raise an eyebrow. And yet when it comes to wine, it is still considered geeky and kind of pointless to care about the same thing. After all, aren't all grapes organically grown in a field somwhere?

Well, the short answer to that is no. Just like much of the food we eat, plenty of wine is produced for a mass audience, with shortcuts taken along the way to ensure that they taste good without costing a fortune to make.

So shouldn't we start celebrating the wine makers who buck this trend, and instead apply the Chez Panisse philosophy to their vineyards? The ones who treat their workers fairly, reduce their carbon emissions, farm without pesticides? Or those who plant hedgerows to encourage biodiversity, use grapes that are indigenous to their regions and add as little as possible during the winemaking process?

There are plenty of them out there. Aubert de Villaine, Elisabetta Foradori, Pepe Raventós, Jean-Laurent Vacheron, Olivier Humbrecht, Eloi Durrbach, Christine Vernay, Nicolas Joly, David Paxton...these are winemakers who should be talked about in the same breath as chefs like Waters, Barber and the rest. 

That's is what this book is about – a celebration of those committed, dedicated producers. If their wines are here, it is because they taste brilliant, will enhance what you are eating and provide a moment of shared happiness with whoever you are drinking them with. But they also come with a story, from people who care about authenticity, and want to preserve the land that nourishes their grapes.'

Jane dismisses the simple idea that it is just a question of small versus big. 'What's important is that each winemaker supports an idea of farming that is respectful of the future, and looks to capture a snapshot of time, place and culture in a glass of wine.

The majority of the book covers wines and producers that meet Jane's criteria. It includes organic, biodynamic, natural, orange and low intervention wines. 

The recommended wines are arranged by style: sparkling & fresh, crisp whites; wine cocktails; rich and round whites; light & sculpted reds; full and warming reds; and finally digestifs. 

The long list of photo credits include: ziolaKim Lightbody, Harry Annoni, Eric Zeziola, John Carey, Marçal Font, Rocco Ceselin and and Claude Cruells.

This is a book to help you explore and discover interesting and sometimes challenging wines.    

2 comments:

Simon said...

It's very admirable to write a book highlighting the extra effort that organic and biodynamic growers go to in order to produce grapes/wine (I'm sorry but I have to leave so-called 'natural' wines out as it's a term I find particulalry disingenuous). I haven't read it yet but the real fight as far as I am concerned is to make the general public understand what the costs of production are and what are the benefits of organic/biodynamic viticulture other than environmental ones. I believe that the average price paid for a bottle of wine in the UK is just over £5.50 with duty at £2.16 and VAT at 20%, proving that the 'average' wine drinker doesn't paid too much heed to how their wine is produced. At the current time consumers are so far removed from all types of food and drink production, unlike generations say 50 years ago, that supermarkets are able to give them a false sense of the cost of production. It's going to be a long road to travel to get the true message across.

Jim Budd said...

I agree the wish for cheap wine inevitably leads to many producers still using large quantities of weed killer etc. in order to meet low price points. The consumer has to take their part in being responsible for this.