Roberson Wine is an independent wine retail located in the heart of London city. More specifically Kensington High Street. Established back in 1991 they have worked hard to build their collection of wines to include everything from the very finest, rarest wines to the very best everyday bottles out there. Not only this, but their sister company “London Cru” is the first winery within London.
Just last week a couple work colleagues and I were invited to attend their “Introduction to Wine” tasting event. Perfect for a wine novice like myself. I have to admit I was a bit apprehensive because I don’t know much about wine, but I thought this would be the perfect event for me to learn, and I was not wrong.
The event was held at their Kensington’s store, in the cellar and comprised of 4 tables with 28 different wines to try. I luckily managed to try 27 out of the 28, just missing out on the 1985 Haut- Medoc Chateau La Langue worth £75.
Table:1 The “What” Of Wine
The taste of wine can be due to a number of factors – the weather, the soil, the producer etc. One batch can differ from an another. This table sought to teach us newbies about one of the most important factors – the variety it is made from. The table took you on the tour of some of the major white and red varieties, giving you an introduction to the main characteristics and flavours of wine.
From here, my favourite wines would have to be the 2012 Bourgogne Blac ‘Les Femelottes’ and the 2013 Riesling
Table 2: The “Where” of Wine
When it comes to wine, geography is important. Even if the vineyards are metres away from one another, it can make all the difference in the bottle you drink. Mark, one of the Wine experts at Roberson did an amazing job at teaching me about wine and how the “where” can dramatically effect its taste. An important element in wine production, the concept of “terroir” revolves around the idea that each specific plot of land will yield grapes that will be influenced by the soil, rainfall, temperature, wind and many more factors. In effect, all these factors will impart a distinctive taste that will define the wine.
For example, on this table were two types of Riesling one grown in France in Alsace and the other the German side of the border Mosel. So close to one another, yet the wine produced was so different! My favourite out of the two – The German wine.
Table 3: The “Who” of wine
The “Who” of wine explores the difference in the human effect on its taste- the journey of the grape to the bottle. Three types of methods were shown to us.
- Farmed and vinified conventionally
- Farmed Organically and made sympathetically
- Farmed Bio-dynamically and made “naturally” – (From my understanding) this is when the farmer uses no chemicals on their grapes or anything to speed up the process. The farmer will naturally allow the grapes to complete what they need to do, no matter the time.
Table4: The “When” of wine
This table showed us the difference and effect aging wine can have. This table kicked off with two examples of Champagne (you can’t go wrong there!) one which was a ‘non vintage’ blend of numerous years and one that was the product of a single vintage. This allowed us to see the difference the years made to the same bottle. Moving onto the reds that Roberson placed on the table, were three bottles of Haut – Medoc one from 2007, 1996 and 1985. Their aim, to show us how much an effect aging wine can have on the taste. Even though I didn’t taste the 1985 bottle the difference between 2007 and 1996 was phenomenal (considering I’m not much of a wine connoisseur)
All in all, I really enjoyed my time at Roberson Wine. I learnt alot, drank alot and know more about wine. Not only were the wine experts helpful and brimming with knowledge to share, Roberson handed out booklets full of information and free bottle openers. However, one realisation came from this experience; I definitely prefer white wine!
*Pictures were supplied by Roberson Wine