Daily Newsletter of the Harrogate Medical Wine Society



  • La Rioja Alta: Thursday 30 April 2020 at the Masonic Hall (Fully subscribed). Tickets cost £40 pp but only £35 if purchased now. Discount ends on 31 March. The event is postponed indefinitely 
  • “Alsace 2017 – Grand Cru Wines of Domain Schlumberger”:  Thursday 4 June 2020 at the Masonic Hall. Tickets £35 inclusive of supper – £32 if purchased now. Deposit for reservations is £10 pp. (4 places left. 3 interested). The event is postponed indefinitely
  • German Riesling 2018Thursday 2 July 2020 at the Masonic Hall. Tickets are £35 pp inclusive of a two-course supper but cost only £30 if purchased now. Reservations are accepted with a deposit of £10 pp. 19 places are available. The event is postponed indefinitely
  • Summer LunchSunday 2 August 2020 at Sasso. Register interest before 30 April. (19 interested). Cancelled


June Wine Offers

  • Fells June Offer

Communicating With The HMWS

Please use email, WhatsApp, FaceTime or Zoom but NOT text or telephone messages. They will not reach the Society in Sri Lanka and as such, cannot be acted upon


TODAY – SATURDAY 6 JUNE 2020 – A Leaf Day


  • Wine: The Wine Society has Chateau Musar 2013 at £27 per bottle
  • HMWS Blog: Hedonist had 11 (↓) views yesterday


Tua Rita 2017

“2017 is a rather special vintage for Tua Rita, marking the 25th anniversary of the release of Giusto di Notri, the estate’s emblematic label – a wine that has set the standard for the winery’s reputation and that deserves to be fully celebrated. This year Giusto di Notri surprises even more, with a delicate structure and intensely varietal notes. From the complexity of Redigaffi, to the generosity of Per Sempre and the charming vivacity of Keir, 2017 is the vintage of hauntingly beautiful wines, marked by incredible purity and elegance. Another classic in the making.” – Armit Wines

The wines are on offer to the HMWS. Details on request. – BD


  • Jancis Robinson’s Newsletter






  • Bordeaux 2019 En Primeur: Domaine de Chevalier Rouge (“Lots of intensity and complexity”) & Blanc (“Opulent”) are on offer to the HMWS. Shipping is anticipated in spring 2022. Details on request
  • Blog Post: 24 Hours In Belgrade” was published yesterday
  • HMWS Blog: Hedonist had 15 (↑) views yesterday


Balkan Trains & Wine

“We viewed the rail journey blog recently, it certainly looks amazing. Would like to take the journey sometime in the future.
We recently tried a bottle of Croatian wine which we had brought back from our holiday last year. It was delicious. The name of the wine was HH. Hvar Hills.  It was 16% but tasted rich and smooth.” – Peter (Murphy), Ackworth

Bar to Belgrade is a remarkable train ride. I would agree that Balkan wines, specially those from indigenous grapes, are excellent. I remember with pleasure wines from grape varieties such as Tamjanika, Prokupac and Vranac tasted during holidays in the region in the last two years. – BD







  • Bordeaux 2019 En Primeur: Cos d’Estournel and Château Laroque were released yesterday and are available to the Society. Details on request
  • Twitter: London Wine Merchants Lea & Sandeman are now following the HMWS on Twitter
  • HMWS Blog: Hedonist had 11 (↓) views yesterday

Bolgheri Rosso 2018 Michele Satta

“Last week, Jancis Robinson rated a mixed dozen of the wines that we think best define Armit – a selection she described as “rather grand”. Among them was the newest addition to our portfolio Michele Satta, one of the founders of the Bolgheri DOC and a producer described by Jancis Robinson MW as the region’s “champion of Sangiovese”. The wine tasted was the Bolgheri Rosso 2018, which seems to have gone down well!.
The 2018 is a blend dominated by Sangiovese and Cabernet, but also unusually includes Syrah and even Teroldego. Jancis Robinson MW praised the “tang” on the palate that gives the wine “a real energy”, before claiming that she is “won over” by its balance and vibrancy. A score of 16.5 puts this wine into some rather illustrious company from Tuscany, on par with Serre Nuove and Guidalberto.” – Armit Wines

Bolgheri Rosso 2018 Michele Satta – £73.40 per case of six from the HMWS

“30% Sangiovese, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 10% Syrah, 10% Teroldego – quite a blend, a blend of all the varieties grown on the estate, from Bolgheri’s champion of Sangiovese – a rare beast! This well-established domaine of 23 ha is now tended by Michele’s son Giacomo. Ten years’ ageing is promised.

Mid to deep crimson. Rather a sweet nose that appeals a little less to me than Satta’s Sangiovese-dominated wines. But on the palate there’s a lovely counterbalancing tang. There is real energy here – this is a wine that cries out for food. I’m won over – especially by the nervy balance of fruit, acid and tannin on the palate. With its sweetness, it could be just the thing for our Chinese takeaway tonight.” 
16.5/20, Jancis Robsinson MW, jancisrobinson.com 




  • HMWS Blog: Hedonist had 13 (↓) views yesterday

Bordeaux En Primeur 2019: Palmer’s Alter Ego

Following yesterday’s release of Château Palmer 2019, the estate’s superlative youthful expression, Alter Ego is available to the Society on allocation. Unlike Palmer, Alter Ego is wonderfully supple and approachable in its youth, with fragrant, juicy Merlot at the forefront of the blend.

Harvestat Palmer began on 19th September with the Merlot. As Thomas Duroux and his team explain, “the berries were concentrated, aromatic and loaded with sugar”. After the intense heat and drought of the summer, the September rain was a relief and helped lower the potential alcohol of the Cabernet Sauvignon, which was harvested by 11th October. The team conclude: “In 2019, the Merlots enjoyed dry and sunny weather conditions up to the very end, giving rise to wines full of power, exuberance and flesh. The Cabernets, harvested after the scattered rains of late September, would develop a certain coolness and reserve, to produce wines of rare distinction.”

Alter Ego 2019 – £297 per 6 bottles.


Blog Post “Bar to Belgrade – The Ultimate Balkan Train Journey

“The train journey sounds fantastic..” – Peter (Murphy), Ackworth







  • New Wine Offer: Fells June Offers. Click here to see them
  • HMWS Blog: Hedonist had 34 (↑) views yesterday

May In The HMWS

  • Wine: The Society sourced 39 cases of wine for 9 members from 2 UK suppliers. Delivery & collection was handled by Ian Botwright
  • The Blog: There were 1828 views by 436 visitors




  • Wine Offers: Fells June offer will be published tomorrow. Fells invoices for the May Offers were paid yesterday. The Society is grateful to the nine  members who settled their wine invoices promptly. Collection went smoothly but Tony Coral’s wines were not collected (see Ian’s letter below). There seems to be a spare case of Warwick First Lady Rose. Anybody interested? (Sold)
  • New Wine Offer From Armit Wines: Astrolabe Province Sauvignon Blanc 2018. Click here to see the offer
  • HMWS Blog: Hedonist had 10 (↓) views yesterday


  • Wine Collection

“Hi Bernard, Yes yesterday was fine, just Tony Coral’s wine to pick up. I do seem to have a spare 6 bottle case of Warwick Rose despite checking each pick from a printed  list? The second Fells delivery came early Friday and I couldn’t check it against orders as I hadn’t created a list organised by wine name, and checked off Thursday’s delivery against it. Kind regards.” – Ian (Botwright), Ripon

  • Letter From Colombo

At last, evening rains have started in Colombo and the days have become cooler. The curfew and the ban on sale of alcohol was relaxed this week and I was able to get hold of some beer, local Gin, Arrack and wine (Kumala Shiraz/Mouvedre & Jacobs Creek Reserve Chardonnay) from the local supermarket. A wine dealer – Mega Vintage, delivered a case each of McWilliams Shiraz and Angrove Long Row Riesling. The first wine after a drought of over 10 weeks was the Shiraz. It tasted heavenly!

A good friend and colleague from Harrogate wrote: “Hope you are all well. Keep safe. Looking forward to when we can share a glass of something special again.” – BD




11 thoughts on “Hedonist

  1. I would drive 500 miles: I have travelled the western Inverness to Durness section (some parts many times) and the stunning scenery keeps calling me back again and again.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Superb And well organised tour.Some excellent wine tastings and returning with increased knowledge and love of good quality wines and champagne.Thank you Bernard and HMWS.


  3. The Alsace and Champagne tour was as good as ever, again with superb organisation, good quality tastings and welcoming hosts. Riquewihr in glorious autumn colours is beautiful. HMWS is also about fine dining and the evening at Auberge de L’Ill at Illhaeusern was a memorable highlight. Thank you for excellent planning, agreeable company and the two well-chosen hotels. Alisdair and Elma


  4. Sending you both our love and seasonal greetings, a happy Christmas and a wonderfull new year from Yorkshire. (Ey up hava gudun an si thee next yer). Mandy and Les
    Si thi. Les


  5. Bernard the tour to the Englis Vineyards sounds very appealing. We recently visited the Three Choirs Vineyard and we were very impressed. The vineyard was well kept with vine rows widely spaced (the vineyard had previously been a fruit farm.). The vineyard had recently been extended to include a few acres of Chardonnay. We had a glass of the Classic Cuvee as an aperitif it was light and delicate and very enjoyable. For lunch we tried Oak Aged Red 2014 ” a soft rounded red wine with berry fruits and a hint of oak” it complemented our lamb beautifully. We were also offered a taster of an alternative wine which the staff thought would also go well with our meal. The food and presentation were excellent. The staff were attentive and knowledgeable, one of the owners also came out to chat with us. We were sorry we didn’t have time to explore more vineyards but we had birthday party celebrations to attend. Best Regards Peter and Carol. P.S. We bought a guide to The wines of England and Wales.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Just like to say how much I enjoyed the tasting by Ian on Thursday night. A really interestingly conceived tasting which certainly demonstrated the 2014 vintage to be one of great quality and potential. I thought that the Sylvaner and the Kuentz-Bas muscat were probably the best examples of those two grapes that I have ever tasted. like Ian, I am not normally a fan of dry muscat, but the Kuentz-Bas was so intense and relatively complex that I really enjoyed it. I also felt that the Pinot Gris was certainly among the best that I have encountered and for me was among the best 3 wines at the tasting, along with the Gewürztraminer. The wine I found the most impressive was however the Ginglinger Riesling. Must go back after about 30 years – he also makes great Gewürztraminer.
    Finally I would like to thank Ian for his clear and informative talk. I was particularly impressed by his calm forbearance as the acoustics were not ideal and perhaps it would have been kinder had some of us been better able to control our excitement to pass comment on the wines to our neighbours rather than listening to what Ian had to say. A very enjoyable evening capped with a good meal. Thanks again.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Morning Bernard I’ve been checking my emails and noticed I’m getting them from you again, having gone through the mail I’ve been missing all sorts of bookings / and to book tastings
    Nice to see it back again, I understand there is a small cost to send emails out could this cost be added onto the membership cost, 🍷A lot of good reading 🥂Cheers Les Wilson


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