Notes From the Winemaker - December 13th, 2011


Just back from restorative days with family and friends in Italy, and a great working visit to London, I can't resist celebrating our wines' popularity with English critics and winelovers in some of London's leading establishments, the city where the frame of reference on wine was the first to be global. Particularly Octagon, Cabernet Franc, Viognier, and Malvaxia Passito are favored with selection in fine shops and restaurants, including the élite, new Mandarin Oriental, where Cabernet Franc Reserve is the only Cabernet Franc on the List.

To celebrate this season, now through January 8th, I've authorized the Tasting Room to apply free shipping to customers of our on-line shop for 6-bottle purchases of Octagon 2007, and the same for 6-bottle purchases of Philéo. (The Tasting Room will adjust the shipping charges when your order is received). 

Here, joined by Chris Blosser (foreground, right), manager of Breaux Vineyards, our Oxfordshire restaurant host beside him, Chris Parker (rear left), our UK agent and outstanding wine blogger, and the proprietor of the Oxford Wine Company between us, I enjoyed an afternoon's adventure in wine tastings (and great bistro food), with Octagon in the middle of the table holding its own very nicely. It's OK to like it, Jancis Robinson (Oxford Companion to Wine) says -- "Deep crimson with a lovely fresh, well integrated nose. Polished, well balanced Bordeaux blend. Long and poised. Bravo. Drink now through 2020."

Octagon 2007 is the ideal wine for giving to the self, especially in this vintage of moderate supply and immoderate excellence -- 5 Gold Medals in 2011 alone, including 3 Best-Bordeaux Blend-in-Show awards. This wonderful vintage, a great candidate for long-term cellaring, is also our best way of passing along the news that there will not be an Octagon from 2011. This year's harvest was certainly "very good" enough to give us fine wines, approachable early in bottle and of true character; but it was not the basis for a wine which we've always promised must come from an outstanding vintage. Accordingly, Octagon 2007 will disappear from stock even more quickly because of its rarity and authentic collectibility. 

Philéo, Gold Medaled at Beverage Testing Institute this year, is an ideal wine for gift-giving in the holiday season, and is one of the most widely appreciated delights in our entire portfolio. 

Please, don't let me stop you ~ Have a wonderful Holiday Season,
wishing you all the warmth of Barboursville,


Sincerely ~