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The week in pictures

©Tristan Fewings, Getty

Actor Kevin Spacey and the director Thea Sharrock joined guests for a gala to mark the last night of Clarence Darrow, which has been running at The Old Vic theatre in London. Champagne Taittinger, a supporter of the Old Vic, was on hand with liquid refreshment.

Photo credit: Benjamin Ealovega

Taittinger was also on hand for the reception of the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s annual gala, with guests enjoying Villa Maria wines over dinner.
Celebrating the arrival of summer, db couldn’t resist the chance to sip Pelorus and the latest vintages of Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir on the fifth floor roof terrace of Harvey Nichols in Knighstbrige where the LVMH-owned New Zealand wine brand is showing off features of the garden it exhibited at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show. 
Chrisitan Seely of Quinta do Noval was in town this week to host a tasting of his dry Douro reds at 28-50 in Mayfair. Beginning with a trio of wines from Cedro do Noval and a further three vintages of Quinta do Noval Touriga Nacional, the tasting culminated in six vintages of Quinta do Noval Port spanning from 2004 to 2011. Recently released Noval Nacional 04 was served at lunch, along with Seely’s Hampshire sparkling wine, Coates & Seely, which served as an ideal apéritif.
Kicking off the week in style, db paid a visit to Jason Atherton’s Berners Tavern at the London Edition hotel, where we lunched with Francois Le Grelle, managing director of Hine Cognac, on aged beef tartare and halibut with squid ink risotto.

Thomas Bachelder (left) explained just how you manage to end up making wine in Burgundy, Niagara and Oregon over lunch at Corrigan’s in Mayfair. With Pinot Noir from all three regions on show, the event offered a unique opportunity to compare these three very different regions, whose grapes have all been vinified in the same way.

It’s not every day that you have the chance to taste Champagne from the 1921, 1914 and 1892 vintages, but Pol Roger offered guests in Epernay the chance to experience the wines that Sir Winston Churchill himself would have enjoyed as the house launched its 2002 vintage of the prestige cuvée named in honour of the Prime Minister who led Britain through the Second World War.

Pol Roger’s Hubert de Billy wonders where the riddlers have disappeared to as he led guests on a tour of the house’s 7km network of underground cellars, which store up to 9m bottle of Champagne.

Winston Churchill’s daughter Lady Mary Soames, who had given her blessing to every vintage of Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill since its launch in 1984, sadly died just three weeks before the 2002 release. However, Randolph Churchill, great-grandson of Winston Churchill, attended the launch to welcome this ongoing connection between the Pol Roger and Churchill families.

What does Michelin-starred chef Michel Roux enjoy drinking? Beaujolais, if this photo taken at the Taste of Dublin festival is anything to go by.

Kathrine Larsen celebrates being crowned Moët UK Sommelier of the Year 2014 with runners up Loic Avril of The Fat Duck in Berkshire and Tanguy Martin of Hotel TerraVina in Hampshire.

Fourteen bartenders from around the world spent six days in the UK for the final of the Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition. Split between the lively bar scene of London and these rather more relaxed surroundings of the gin brand’s new Laverstock Mill distillery in rural Hampshire, the eventual winner was Remy Savage from Paris with his “Paper Anniversary” cocktail.

Rioja brand Campo Viejo teamed up with Oxford University at the Streets of Spain for an experiment to test the impact of colour and music on how we perceive a wine’s flavour. The results, based on feedback from around 3,000 participants, indicate that red light and “sweet” music is the ideal combination, increasing enjoyment by as much as 9%; while green light and “sour” music increased freshness and reduced intensity by 14%. According to the experts, Just Can’t Get Enough by Nouvelle Vague is the ideal accompaniment if you like your wines fresh and fruity.

UK agent Maisons Marques et Domaines donated £910 to Chris Porter, chairman of The Benevolent, pictured here with Richard Billett of MMD and David Cox of The Benevolent. Porter recently visited every football league ground in the UK, travelling by foot, bicycle or public transport to raise money for the drinks trade charity. Having received over 200 donations, Porter smashed his original fundraising target to reach of total of almost £30,000. 

The team from Vignobles Foncalieu, Michel Bataille, Gabriel Reutsch, Marie-Annick Consola and Gaëlle Caillaud, visited Prestonfield House Hotel in Edinburgh to celebrate the launch of their latest vintages at a dinner organised by the co-operative’s Scottish agent Inverarity Morton.

L’Esprit de Tiffon held this atmospheric launch in Poland for a 200 year old Cognac, which has been produced using a range of extremely rare distillates, the oldest of which dates back to 1805.


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