Being fairly new to the Wine trade I still get slightly giddy at the prospect of all the wonderful, eclectic and most importantly free tasting that I get invited to. Nine times out of ten you will be fed incredible food (the smaller the event, the better the food!), there are always like minded people to talk to and best of all you can tell your friends you have gone to work!
Unfortunately there is a touch of tragedy in this tale…the reality is that I very rarely find time to attend any of these fantastic occasions and the few that I do get to go to, I do actually have to work, either behind a table promoting our wine or finding new and exciting wine to put on the website, admittedly the later isn’t always that taxing.
However last week for various reasons of geography I managed to make it along to two very different wine world events.
The week started rather unusually in that it was Tuesday (bank holiday) and I was trying to master the art of presenting to camera for our up and coming Find Wine videos. I do not want to give too much away before the grand unveiling, all I will say is that you most certainly cannot learn anything about terroir from tasting soil samples!
So to Wednesday and after a very dull day of sitting at a desk beavering away I was invited along to the help judge the Bibendum “Bloggers Wine World Cup”…this is where the glorious food comes in! In baking sunshine I meandered my way through Regents Park to the lovely Bibendum head offices. The whole street alive with chatter and laughter, life that only seems to be born out of London in true sunshine. Life that is tempting. Life that makes you want to detour and have a cold beer. However, for the sake of this story, I resisted and continued past the sun-kissed revellers to help make the crucial choice as to who should win the Wine World Cup between South Africa and Italy.
This was a bloggers tasting and I was therefore a slight impostor, in fact a total impostor. I would hardly count this blog eligible to appear alongside some of the wordpress mastery that is produced by the majority of the people in the room I was about to enter. Plus it is not really about wine in the same way that www.wineconversation.com, www.thewinesleuth.co.uk www.winepassionista.com are. In fact as it stands, this blog seems really to be about very little at all!!
Was I wearing the right clothes? Was my 8GB iphone powerful enough? Should I be carrying a camera? Should I invent a fake blogging alias, a fake twitter account and put on a fake accent? Maybe I should have thought this through in a bit more detail before ambling so merrily towards the event. What if they sussed me and I was banned from all future wine events…no more delicious canapes, no more sushi in the Saatchi gallery on Australia Day!
Then I remembered it was a wine blogging event and I was not Jack Bauer.
The room was full of faces I have only ever seen in very small scale as a twitter profile, and names that I didn’t recognise without underscores or alias’. I very much stood out as the only none real blogger there, in that my iphone was completely flat in battery and I didn’t have some fancy gadget to boost it’s life. I wasn’t taking photos of the food, the wine and the other people present. Hence why this blog somewhat lacks imagery…I will get better at capturing everything I do on camera I promise!
The other thing I promise to improve is my ability to actually write things down and then keep the notes so I can refer back to what I actually had to drink and what it tasted like!
What I can tell you is that half the wines were Italian, the other half South Africa with varying degrees of quality and at various prices.
There was a surprisingly good Graham Beck Rose, an unusual and unlikely red from near Port Elizabeth in SA (Probably should have made a note of what it was exactly!) and a show stopping Straw wine from SA to finish. All in all a fantastic, entertaining selection of wines and a competition eventually won by the South Africans despite my votes going the other way.
If you would like the details of the wines or what they tasted like then I suggest you read one of the blogs I mentioned above who probably made thorough notes and took wonderful photos, if you squint you will probably spot me in the background looking slightly out of my blogging depth.
I am just not sure I have what it takes to become a hardcore wine blogger. Many these people produce dazzling work for little or no reward, often providing insight and imagery to rival some professionals. I am very happy to attend some events and indulge in Fois Gras lollipops but I think I will stick to selling the wine…well and writing the odd blog about that instead!
What I need to become a proper wine blogger-
- A charged iphone or at least a fancy back up battery pack from which to twitter.
- A massive camera with which to take photos of everything so that my blog looks like a cookbook/professional wine mag. NB. Some people can create this effect with an iphone, I would struggle with a massive camera.
- The ability to plan ahead so that when I attend something, I think, “I might write about this, I better take proper notes.”
- A Mac Book, somehow I feel if I had top notch kit it might make my currently inartistic brain more inspired (potentially expensive experiment).
- And many many editing skills that I will never possess.