After several days of glorious sunshine in the lead-up to the event, it was rather disappointing to see the rain start to fall on the morning of our Artisan Wine Fair at the Columcille Centre in Morningside. However, with some reflection, we all agreed it was actually not a bad thing…what better way to spend a rainy Saturday afternoon than by sampling lots of delicious organic, biodynamic and natural wines?! Thankfully, it seemed that lots of others felt the same way, so we had a great turnout and it was a fantastic day.
The event was held to celebrate Real Wine Month, which, as the name suggests, is a whole month (May) where various bars, restaurants and hotels run promotions on a selected range of organic, biodynamic and natural wines, such as serving them by the glass, which helps encourage people to try wines they might not ordinarily buy by the bottle.
As specialists in these types of wines, it was the perfect opportunity to host a fair to showcase the wonderful work that is being done around the world by artisan producers, who pride themselves on the limited intervention in both the vineyard and winery, creating wines that are a true reflection of their terroir. The l’Art du Vin team were out in force and each table had about 15 wines for attendees to sample; the flow of people through the fair was the perfect pace to allow for lots of questions and discussion about the wines. We were also lucky enough to have one of our producers join us for the day; Jamie McCulloch brought his Les Deux Cimes range all the way from Valais in Switzerland for people to try and shared with them some of the winemaking skills he uses to create his particular expressions of both international grapes and some regional Swiss varietals.
There were some insightful masterclasses run throughout the day, which were hosted by Doug Wregg of Les Caves de Pyrenes, a pioneer of ‘real’ wine; they were the perfect opportunity for people who wanted to get that little bit more in-depth knowledge about organic, biodynamic and natural wines, and it was great to see so many people keen to get involved in them.
It wouldn’t really have been a true celebration of artisan wine without some top-quality artisan food to help line the stomach! The team from l’escargot blanc Bar à Vin were on-hand with a veritable feast of charcuterie and crusty French bread. The Morningside branch of the famous Edinburgh cheesemongers, I. J. Mellis, also brought along a selection of their delicious cheeses, biscuits and chutneys. Last, but by no means least, was the fabulous Loch Fyne Oysters, who were kept busy shucking all afternoon for the hungry, but were also showcasing their superb range of wines they’re now producing in conjunction with a winery in France. The food stalls certainly proved popular throughout the afternoon with regular queues building up across the room.
As the fair drew to a close, even the sun started to shine, so happy wine-tasters headed off with a rosy glow to enjoy their sunny Saturday evenings.