Uncorked: Auriane d’Aramon

Auriane d’Aramon is head wine buyer for Friarwood Fine Wines. She was previously a sommelier at Orrery restaurant in Marylebone and before that assisted the fine wine buying director at Berry Bros & Rudd. Her parents, Eric and Laure, are the former directors of Château Figeac in St Emilion, where Auriane grew up. She is now based in London.

What bottle sparked your love of wine?

It wasn’t a particular bottle but wine itself. I was brought up on a vineyard in St Emilion, so wine has always been a part of my life.

My interest started when I started observing my family blind tasting wine during family dinners. It was fascinating to see them work out the region, vintage, appellation, and the producer.

For me it was just a glass of wine. I wondered how they were able to guess so much and wanted to be able to do the same.

What would you be if you were a wine?

I would be aromatic and appealing, balanced and complex yet smooth and enjoyable. Also, I’d like to think that I would improve with age!

Where are you happiest?

Anywhere with friends and family and when I travel.

What’s your greatest vice?

Chocolate and a good charcuterie board!

Best advice you ever received?

I have been given two pieces of advice that I still stick by. Everybody makes mistakes, learn from them, and that happiness is a choice.

Best bottle of wine you’ve ever had?

Salon 1995. I was immersed in the world of red wine and didn’t know much about vintage Champagne. When I tasted Salon 1995, it was fabulous. It was so precise, balanced, elegant and persistent.

Favourite wine memory?

Seven years ago, I was at Vinexpo and tried a really good Israeli wine: Yarden. I was starting to specialise my career in wine and knew the French regions, but didn’t know much about what the rest of the world had to offer.

From that moment I promised myself to try, taste and explore as many wines from all around the world as possible and to always keep an open mind.

Favourite wine region?

Hard to say as I still have so much to discover and explore, but I would probably say Burgundy. I like the elegance of both the Chardonnay and the Pinot Noir and the diversity and complexity this region offers despite the fact that the wines are made from a single grape.

If you could only take one wine to a desert island, what would it be?

A bit biased but it will be Figeac 2001.

If you could only drink wine made from one grape for the rest of your life, what grape would you choose and why?

It’s a horrible choice to have to make but I’d choose Chardonnay. You can drink it at any occasion: on its own, with some nibbles or with a meal. It also includes Champagne!

What’s the best and worst thing about the drinks business?

The best thing is meeting lovely, passionate and very interesting people from all over the world but also wine’s connection to food. The worst thing is knowing the different costs and prices when ordering a bottle of wine in a restaurant.

What wines are on your bucket list?

Dunn Vineyard, Ridge, Vieux Château Certan, Salon, and for my personal interest Chinese wines and wines made with Pinot d’Aunis.

Who would you invite to your dream dinner party and what food and wines would you serve?  

All my closest friends. Everybody would bring wine and I’d cook a 9-hour brisket!

Ultimate food and wine match?

Duck breast with a Saint Joseph red.

Personal satisfaction (Parker points – out of 100

95. I think I’m pretty lucky with my life right now.

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