March 2017

Secrets of the Cardinal Vaughan Car Park

Neighbouring the north stands at Twickenham the Cardinal Vaughan Car Park has seen the warm-up for countless rugby fixtures, most recently the RBS 6 Nations. On the 11th of March the guests of Champagne Bollinger basked in glorious sunshine awaiting England vs Scotland & the Calcutta Cup. The Cardinal Vaughan Car Park is unequalled in terms of pre-game socialising & networking, offering the chance for the great & good from many walks of life to entertain & be entertained. Tales of previous fixtures were traded and predictions swapped as fans from both sides congregated around picnic tables laden with food & drink.

Bollinger Hospitality

Bollinger Special Cuvée as the apéritif was followed by a roasted celeriac soup with hazelnut pesto, accompanied by M.Chapoutier Chante-Alouette. Beef bourguignon, creamy mash & autumn vegetables & Roda Reserva followed & finally a selection of French cheeses, apricot tart & brownies paired with Taylor’s 20 Year Old Tawny Port.

England took home the Calcutta Cup along with the 6 Nations Championship and fans from both sides came together to celebrate & commiserate the result in the Bollinger Tent in the West Fan Village.

Bollinger Tent at Twickenham

The 6 Nations has drawn to a close with England winning the trophy but unable to win the Grand Slam. This did not prove to be the case for the England Women’s team, who were guided by Captain Emily Scarratt and the Men’s under-20’s team who also managed the Slam. It is clear that this has been an outstanding chapter for English Rugby, with fantastic results in all areas, offering plenty of hope for the future of the game.

February 2017

British Port Association Appoints First Woman Treasurer

Natasha Bridge becomes the first woman Treasurer of the British Association, Oporto.

Natasha Bridge

The association of British Port shippers has elected Natasha Bridge as its first woman Treasurer. The British Association, as it is known, is made up of seven historic British Port companies including three firms belonging to the Fladgate Partnership, Taylor’s, Fonseca and Croft, of which Natasha is a Director.

The Association’s imposing headquarters is the Factory House, an elegant neo-Palladian building commissioned by the British Port houses and completed in 1790.  Located in the old riverside commercial quarter of Oporto, the Factory House and its valuable contents embody the heritage and traditions of the British shippers and their prominent role in the Port trade since the late 17th century.

For over two centuries, management of the Factory House remained – by tradition rather than regulation – the preserve of senior male members of the British Port firms.  In 2010, Natasha became the first woman to be elected to membership of the Association and to become eligible to serve as Treasurer.  The Treasurer is appointed for one year and, as well as presiding over the Association, is responsible for the upkeep of the Factory House and for a busy programme of activities of which a high point is the Treasurer’s Dinner held in November.

Natasha’s Treasurership coincides with two important anniversaries: the 50th year of the distinguished Port trade career of her father, Alistair Robertson, chairman of The Fladgate Partnership; and the 325th Anniversary of Taylor’s which has remained an independent family run business since its foundation in 1692.”

February 2017

Mentzendorff Portfolio Tasting 2017

The Mentzendorff Portfolio Tasting on Tuesday 7th of March at One Great George Street is our most important event of the year, bringing together winemakers from around the world to share their vinous bounty with you.

Our entire range of Champagnes, wines, fortified wines and spirits will be on show. Taste new releases such as the rare Taylor’s 1967 Single Harvest Port, or the first release of Michel Chapoutier’s fantastically named sparkling Saint-Peray; La Muse de Richard Wagner. This year will also herald something a little different. Wine may be our thing, but everyone deserves a lip-smacking cocktail or a vivifying long drink on occasion! Which is why we introduce, for one day only, Ludwig’s Liquid Exuberance, named after our founder Ludwig Mentzendorff who first brought Mentzendorff Kummel to England in 1851, where we will be serving cocktails and long drinks using ingredients from our own portfolio. Ludwig Mentzendorff

Serving suggestion; try everything!

January 2017

Strictly sensational; Taylor’s 1967 Single Harvest Port

From the year which saw the launch of the QE2, the release of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and the birth of former MP turned Strictly Come Dancing star Ed Balls, the 1967 Single Harvest Port is the latest in the series of Taylor’s limited release tawny Ports.

Taylor's 1967

Taylor’s extensive and enviable library of very old Ports includes a number of casks of single harvest Ports which undergo very slow and gentle contact with seasoned wood and oxygen during their lengthy period of ageing deep in the Taylor’s lodges in the heart of Vila Nova de Gaia. This extended time in oak allows the creation of extreme aromatic complexity and delightfully mellow structure. The resulting wine is already winning plaudits  from the world’s foremost palates; James Molesworth of Wine Spectator says the 1967 “exhibits remarkable length, with ample viscosity matched by steely tension, putting this in a rarefied air”. Certainly a bottle to get your hands on should you be celebrating a half century not out this year! But be quick, we predict these bottles will be dancing off the shelves sharpish…