As I sit here typing this I am looking at the crowdfunding total and it’s just about to roll over £5,000
worth of pre-orders. That is incredible and such a boost to see that so many people support what I am trying to do. So a huge thank you to all that have supported me so far!
My business is all about wine, finding new wines, telling the stories behind the people that make the wine and letting people enjoy the wines I discover. The focus for me is small, boutique organic and biodynamic producers, yet I will not disclude producers that follow organic principals yet do not have the certificate from the . Which is why I was really happy to receive an email from a potential investor last week with an invite back to Le Marche.
Le Marche or ‘Marche’ as I now realise the locals call it, is a really beautiful part of Italy, even the drive there from where I am in Tuscany is beautiful. The sat nav had a minor meltdown though as there are new tunnels connecting West to East and they are not on her maps…!
We arrived in Marche to be greeted by Cari and her family and their dog Bianca who took a real dislike to Jackson, but this was more down to a strange dog invading her territory. As always, Jackson was very well behaved and even took to going all the way around the house to the back door so not to disturb Bianca while she guarded the front door from this dandy fop that was chasing lizards in her garden!. After lunch, Cari and I hit the road to taste some wines and chat about the business, my vision and ideas of where the business can go and will go. We arrived at a small winery called Saputi and got straight into tasting their wines. Obviously I was trying to keep up appearances and not stand there sculling the wine, so I started off using the spittoon. However, this didn’t last very long once we got onto their top white which is a Sauvignon/Riesling blend. Can I just say for my old boss Mike: You pronounce it Reeesling, not Riiisling. Anyway, what a wine this is! I was genuinely shocked by the quality, the balance and structure. Then the reds came out and the spittoon became redundant. These guys know how to make a great bottle of wine and once the tasting was over I thrust my card at the guy and purchased some of his great wines. The show stopper was their Merlot which they compared to a Petrus, but having never had £500 to spend on a bottle of wine, I can only imagine what it must be like. Saputi is open daily for tastings if you’re ever in the area and looking to try some great wine.
The next day was a national holiday, the day the Americans liberated the Italians from zee Germans. I remember being pre warned of this a few weeks ago but the date went straight out of my head. As with all national holidays in a foreign country, this catches us travellers completely off guard. The telltale sign for us was while we were driving up the Sibillini mountains a parade of middle age men in lycra (MAMIL) all peddling their butts off to climb up the hills. I later found out that no matter if it’s a national holiday or not, this is a common scene in the region.
Wednesday we set off to see Graham and Saranne who we met last time we were in Marche, this time Cari came along as she wanted to experience a huge part of what my business is all about, meeting wine producers, seeing their farms and trying the wine at source. I knew spending the day with Graham would mean we would meet interesting wine producers and see if we could find some exciting new wines to add to the Jackson and Seddon portfolio.
The first winery we visited did not disappoint, a tiny village in the hills, we met a guy at a “road closed” sign and drove up a white road (dirt road) into the never never. We stepped out of the car and with a huge grin on her face Cari turned to me and said “Is it always like this when you go to wineries?” Graham and I looked at each other and smiling in unison said “yeah pretty much” The thing about this part of the world is that the people don’t spend money on making the roads to their farms nice, they spend their money on making their wines great.
The wines we tried were wonderful, even straight from the steal vat his wine was packed with flavour and character. The piece de resistance for me was getting to try his 2015 Pinot Noir straight from the barrique.
On the way back we stopped in to see Carloandrea who works at Terre di Serrapetrona,
http://www.terrediserrapetrona.it/index.php?lang=en who I met last time I was in Marche and is an absolute champion. I wanted Cari to meet him as he has the best accent as his mum is from Yorkshire so he says “bloody hell” like a Yorkshireman, yet he still Italian accent. He had told me he had ‘bag in box’ for me, but it wasn’t quite ready but I didn’t mind as it means I get to go back and see him again and try his incredible wines. All in all a very successful trip to Marche, some wonderful wines tasted and soon to be added to the portfolio, caught up with friends and made new ones. Cari’s parting words “these are three of the best days I’ve had in a really long time” so watch this space and see if the Jackson and Seddon family grows by one more soon….
Those that follow the cast of Second Chance Summer know that Andy has been in Tuscany tending to the olive grove he has rented for the past few weeks. I caught up with him after he had here a couple of days which was brilliant to see a familiar face. Then Romain had a great idea for us all to catch up over lunch, so Samuele, Andy, Romain met up in Castel del Piano had a great lunch together on Sunday, and a couple of glasses of the good stuff.
The conversation mostly revolved around the TV show and how strange it is to watch it back and know all the things that happened in the background and all the parts that have been left on the cutting room floor.
As I sit here writing this, listening to Stephen Fretwell and wondering what ever happened to him, our crowdfunding page has just rolled over £5,000!!!
I am now trying to think of a way to thank everyone other than to ship them all some of the incredible wines I have found.
Please share this with your friends as I really enjoy writing it and I would like people to know what we are up to, especially as the show draws to a close next week.