You will well remember that famous sketch from one of Morecambe and Wise’s Christmas specials which features the famed conductor Andrew Preview. Eric is busy tinkling on the ivories and Mr Preview has the impertinence to suggest he is not playing well.
Eric replies that he is playing all the right notes but not necessarily in the right order.
For some reason this line leapt into my mind the other day when I was reading the wine list in a half decent restaurant. They were quite a few fabled names which on the face of it looked affordable, but closer inspection suggested something was wrong. That’s right …they had all the right wines but not necessarily in the right vintages. In fact there was a selection from the worst years over the last 15 years.
Cos d’estournel is a wine I have always fancied trying and there it was at a reasonable price but I just couldn’t bring myself to buy it. I first discovered Cos during the BBC 4 programme “Wine”. Well worth watching for the appearance of the manager of Cos, Jean-Guillaume Prats. For some reason I always think of him as the Peter Mandelson of the wine world
In a very round about way I am just getting around to think about how brand is becoming more and more important in the wine business. An extreme example would be that the Chinese love to buy Chateau Lafite when quite often there are marginally better made wines at the top end . We are told this is because that Lafite is easy to prononce with the Chinese tongue, this has propelled it to historically high valuations. A case of 2000 will set you back £24000. As we would have a nice vase or bit of crystal on the shelf, rich Chinese have a bottle of Lafite on show.
If you look at the best-selling wines in this country. I will leave it to you to decide whether brand or quality is more important
Le Piat D’or
Anyway to lift your spirits my next blog will be about a real success story from Sainsbury’s.