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Wine News: Drinking in the dark, Biggest Wine Fraud in History and Unusual Vintage

By Anna Spooner on 11/11/16 11:30 AM

Move Over Beer Goggles

Laithwaite’s Wine hosted a state of the art tasting in the dark. In theory, the company hopes that depriving consumers of the primary sense of sight will bring a challenging and exciting element to the wine tasting.

Justin Howard-Sneyd, host of the event and Master of Wine, said: “This is a first in wine tasting. Deprived of sight can you now tell the colour of a wine or even if it is a wine at all? Drinkers may discover their sense of taste is accentuated or altered in the dark or that for years they have been drinking with their eyes.”

Ocean’s Emillion

Bordeaux wine producer, Francois-Marie Marret, has been given a jail sentence of two years and a fine of £7.1 million in one of the largest wine fraud busts of all time.

Eight people in total were convicted for the 2011-2012 fraud which involved blending cheap wines with high end Pomerol and St Emilion vintages and then selling them on as the finer stuff.

The £7.1million fine might seem a little steep for Marret, who customs estimate would have made only €800,000 from the scam.

Wine Fraud

France Suffers Polarising Harvest 

2016 was a year that many vineyards would like to forget. Whether it was freak flooding, intense droughts or hail stones  the size of golf balls – most grape growers seem to have suffered their worst year in around three decades.

1/3 of production was lost in Champagne and in Chablis there was almost nothing left to harvest. One wine-maker from Beaujolais said, ‘All that was missing was a plague of frogs’.

Although, all was not lost. Bordeaux, Alsace and some regions of Rhone had bumper crops this year. But if you’re favourite wine is from Chablis – you better stock up!