No.3 magazine: celebrating 325 years


Share this post

Illustration by Eleanor Crow

The latest issue of our No.3 magazine celebrates our 325th anniversary – a milestone year in our history. Exploring the theme of “generations”, this new edition delves into some of the key themes that will shape the future of fine wine and spirits.  

In 1698, a woman known only as the Widow Bourne opened a grocery shop at No.3 St James’s Street. Here, “at the sign of the coffee mill”, she sold expensive luxuries such as tea, coffee and cacao to a monied clientele in an increasingly fashionable neighbourhood. Gentlemen still walked in public with swords on their belts – no doubt on their way to the coffee-houses-turned-clubs across the road – and Hackney coachmen whipped their horses through chaotic, cobbled streets.  

It is a distant world today – the stuff of a period drama, perhaps – but step through the doors of No.3 St James’s Street, and you can begin to imagine how things would have appeared in the late 17th century. Behind closed doors, our physical spaces have changed quite little: the slightly uneven staircase, shaped by centuries of climbing feet; the walls that once formed part of Henry VIII’s tennis court; the grand, dimly lit cellar where Napoléon III hid from his enemies.  

These are charming (if slightly apocryphal) vignettes, and this colourful heritage has always been important at Berry Bros. & Rudd. But throughout the last three centuries, the world has changed hugely, and continues to do so. How do you pay due respect to the past, while keeping up with changing social values and modern technologies? There is a fine balance to be found between looking back and looking forwards; between respecting tradition and opening the doors to new faces and future generations. Traditions are only worthwhile until they’re no longer fit for purpose.  

This is the spirit of our latest edition of No.3 magazine. Rather than resting on the laurels of history, we believe there is value in considering what the future will bring – and how we can actively shape it. Exploring the theme of “generations”, it touches on some of the key themes that will define the future of fine wine and spirits: environmentalism, diversity and the shifting sands between tradition and evolution.  

In this issue, Barbara Drew MW takes a closer look at gender progression in the wine industry; Elisa De Luca speaks to three winemakers who have re-interpreted local traditions in pursuit of a new vision; novelist Aliya Whiteley takes us underground into the rich world of fungi; Alexandra Gray de Walden sits down for lunch with three generations of Berrys and Rudds; and Islay’s whisky-makers tell us an inter-generational tale of island life. And there’s plenty more alongside that too.  

You’ll find complimentary copies of our latest issue in our London Shop at 63 Pall Mall and our Basingstoke Shop from Monday 5th June

Category: Miscellaneous

White Burgundy: an early summer treat


Share this post

A photograph of two glasses of white Burgundy sitting atop a table beside a sandwich and a block of cheese

If you’re looking for a reliably delicious, everyday wine to see you through the summer months, our White Burgundy is just the ticket. Refreshing and elegant, it’s a fine match for light, summery dishes – but it’s quite the treat by itself too. Scroll down to discover some simple food matches that will pair beautifully with our White Burgundy.  

A chilled glass of white Burgundy on a warm evening is one of life’s small pleasures. Needless to say, this lovely indulgence will quickly burn a hole in your pocket – particularly when you start seeking out Grand and Premier Cru wines from the most famous appellations. If you’re lucky enough to be able to afford them, why wouldn’t you enjoy a quiet glass whenever the moment calls for it? 

For the rest of us, however, a reasonably priced and reliably tasty bottle of white Burgundy – to enjoy after a long day at work, with an evening meal, with friends in the sunshine – is just the ticket. Berry Bros. & Rudd’s own-label 2021 White Burgundy is one such wine: made for early drinking, it offers immediate pleasure now, and comes at a fraction of the price of the region’s great wines. And it’s delicious.  

Refreshing notes of citrus, green apple and pear burst from the glass, counterbalanced by touches of butter, toast and wet stones. Layered, complex and elegant, this is a wine that will sing alongside plenty of homecooked dishes, but is equally satisfying on its own.  

As May shifts to June, a lush bounty of ingredients come into season. Why not make the most of the arrival of early summer with a generous niçoise-style potato salad? This endlessly adaptable salad can be fine-tuned to your own tastes. My vegetarian version consists of Jersey Royal potatoes, steamed asparagus, smoked tofu, chickpeas and soft-boiled eggs, whipped up in a creamy lemon and mustard dressing. Having said that, a more traditional niçoise featuring tuna will be equally delicious with a glass of this lovely wine.  

Another excellent match comes in the form of roasted beetroot and orzo stew. This easy one-pot dish (once you’ve roasted the beets – which can be done in advance and thrown in at the last minute) takes on a dramatic, deep pink hue, all the more stunning when topped with crumbled feta and dill. It makes quite a beautiful dish to serve to one’s dinner companions, easily elevated by a glass of White Burgundy.  

Rarebit toasts are an equally divine match, perfect for a quick supper. A wonderfully gloopy cheese sauce brought together with swish of ale and a kick of mustard, ladled over sourdough toast and grilled until golden – what’s not to love? Pair it with a leek vinaigrette and a glass of White Burgundy, and you’ll be very happy indeed.  

Buy our 2021 White Burgundy here

Category: Miscellaneous

Bordeaux 2022: meet the producers


Share this post

Our Bordeaux 2022 En Primeur publication tells the story of some of the leading producers in the region. Photography: Krystian Krzewinski (above) and Jason Lowe (below)

With En Primeur in full swing, it can be easy to think about Bordeaux purely in terms of prices, allocations and logistics. But there’s more to the region than business. Here, we meet the faces behind four of Bordeaux’s best-known châteaux.

Château Léoville Barton, St Julien

Damien Barton Sartorius

Damien Barton Sartorius and Izarra

“People get way more excited about the dog than about me,” says Damien Barton Sartorius. We’re at Château Léoville Barton on a blustery spring afternoon in 2023, and Damien and his dog, Izarra, are getting their photograph taken. Much like his late grandfather, Anthony Barton, Damien is warm, totally down to earth and suitably self-deprecating. He also has a sensitive side.

“That’s an old-school camera,” Damien says to photographer Jason Lowe.

The photographer has his head down, getting the shot just so on his Hasselblad. He looks up immediately. “This is the exact same camera I photographed your grandfather with 20 years ago,” he says. Jason, it turns out, was here circa 2002 on another Berry Bros. & Rudd project.

Damien smiles and goes a little quiet. “It’s nice to reflect,” he says after a pause.

Read more about Château Léoville Barton.

Château Montrose, St Estèphe

Arnaud Frédéric

Arnaud Frédéric remembers cycling past Ch. Montrose when he was younger

Growing up in the Médoc, Arnaud Frédéric used to cycle from his home in St Julien, north along the banks of the Gironde Estuary through Pauillac and into St Estèphe. He would routinely pass by Château Montrose, looking up at the imposing Second Growth from the road below. Arnaud has recently become the sales director here; he has a newfound perspective on the place.

“You don’t really understand Montrose from down there,” he says. “You understand Montrose form the top of the hill here, looking down at the river.”

Arnaud works not just with Montrose, but with the other estates in the Bouygues family portfolio: Château Tronquoy in St Estèphe, Domaine Henri Rebourseau in Burgundy and Clos Rougeard in the Loire Valley.

Making wine in three distinct French regions gives Arnaud and the team a more holistic view of viticulture and winemaking in France today – and for the future.

“We have to think about the world in a different way,” Arnaud says.

Read more about Château Montrose.

Château Figeac, St Emilion

Frédéric Faye

At Ch. Figeac, Frédéric Faye is always learning

Frédéric Faye has dedicated his entire working life so far to Château Figeac. From washing the windows on his first day to leading the estate to the very top tier of the St Emilion classification, he has come a long way.

“Everyone starts as a student,” Frédéric says. In his early days at Figeac, Frédéric learned from the late, great Thierry Manoncourt.

But he has never stopped learning and seeking out knowledge. From working with interns to sharing information with other producers within and beyond Bordeaux, Frédéric and his team are constantly questioning the status quo.

“It’s important to listen to everybody. Students ask very interesting questions. They see things we don’t see.”

Read more about Château Figeac.

Château Calon Ségur, St Estèphe

Vincent Millet

Vincent Millet has quietly made the wine at Ch. Calon Ségur since 2006

Bordeaux’s great châteaux have always been in the hands of the rich and powerful. In the past it was nobility; today it’s insurance groups, banks and luxury-goods houses. Some may turn their noses up at this development, or lament for times gone by.

Some, but not Vincent Millet, winemaker at Château Calon Ségur. When this historic estate was acquired by Suravenir (part of Crédit Mutuel Arkéa) in 2012 following centuries of noble family ownership, Vincent saw the potential for meaningful, long-term investment.

“It gave the estate a new lease of life,” says Vincent. “Thanks to the investments brought by the group, we’re able to make wines how we wish, in a homogenous way. Even with complicated vintages like 2017 or ’21, we can make high-quality wines thanks to the tools we have. The story of Calon Ségur is in its continuity.”

Read more about Château Calon Ségur.

In our Bordeaux 2022 En Primeur publication, you’ll find a range of interviews with leading producers as well as insights and opinion from our experts. You can browse a digital copy here.

Category: Bordeaux Wine

Capturing an island’s spirit: Port Askaig and Elements of Islay


Share this post

A ceilidh is always a fun (but tiring) affair, as several of our Berry Bros. & Rudd colleagues discovered last month. The team behind the whisky brands Elements of Islay and Port Askaig invited us to an evening in celebration of the island from which they take their name. Among several rounds of Scottish dancing, we also had the opportunity to learn more about Islay itself: its culture, music, and – of course – its whiskies.

Many a whisky lover has embarked on a pilgrimage to Islay. This wild and windswept island, the southernmost of the Scottish Inner Hebrides, is the birthplace of some of the country’s most talked-about whiskies.

The reason Islay has proved such a favourite among whisky-lovers boils down to one thing: peat. The majority of distillers here are known for burning peat as part of their malting process; this imparts rich, smoky aromas to the barley grains later used to craft their whiskies. It’s used in such frequency that these distinct aromas and flavours have become intrinsically linked to Islay itself.

And, as it turns out, that’s a good thing. Islay’s distinct smoked whiskies are incredibly popular; the whisky industry is the largest employer on the island, and plays no small part in boosting tourism. Over the summer months, Islay’s population of 3,200 will see over 80,000 visitors flock to its shores, all in search of a dram of rich, peaty whisky – or several.

It was in celebration of Islay’s wonderful whiskies that our team was invited to a ceilidh last month, hosted by Elements of Islay and Port Askaig. Alongside attempting some traditional Scottish dancing, we were also able to enjoy drams of the Elements of Islay Sherry Cask and Bourbon Cask, and the Port Askaig 15yo. Each of these whiskies has been blended with the utmost care, in order to represent a different aspect of Islay’s spirit and heritage.

Photo: @liz_isles_photography

The art of blending

As we were to discover, a delicious dram of a special whisky is an excellent way to revive yourself in between rounds of ceilidh dancing. Elements of Islay had two of the bottles from their new core range available for us to try: the Bourbon Cask, and the Sherry Cask, while the Port Askaig team had their much-loved 15-Year-Old on offer – a whisky that’s exclusive to Berry Bros. & Rudd. Blending is core to each of these team’s processes; it is the flavour of each whisky, and the character that flavour imparts, that is of the utmost importance to the team.

Each of these bottles was created with the character of Islay’s distilleries in mind. There is no Elements of Islay or Port Askaig distillery; instead, liquid is bought from each of the island’s nine distilleries and used to craft masterful blendss, in a process that harks back to Scottish tradition. Today, single malts are well known across the globe; yet 40 years ago, blended Scotch whisky was far more common.

The teams focus most of their efforts on this art of blending – it is their belief that by bringing elements from different distilleries together, a true sense of Islay’s spirit and character can be captured.

Photo: @liz_isles_photography

Elements of Islay Bourbon Cask

Northern and southern Islay meet here; rich barbecue smokes comes from a distillery in the south, while elements blended from the north carry subtle, zesty flavours. Matured in first-fill and refill Bourbon barrels, this is a smooth and creamy whisky, with notable vanilla notes alongside classic peat smoke.

Elements of Islay Sherry Cask

Matured in first-fill and refill Sherry butts, the Elements of Islay Sherry Cask blends dried fruit and a dark chocolate character from southern Islay, with salty, marine Arbraoth smokie notes from the north of the island. Bonfire ember, lemon oil, dried autumn fruit and ginger spice sing in this explosion of Islay flavour; this is a dram that captures the wild elements of the island, and brings them to life in the glass.

Port Askaig 15-Year-Old

Exclusive to Berry Bros. & Rudd, the Port Askaig has been a longstanding favourite for us. Matured in both Bourbon and Sherry casks, it offers a palate full of coastal tang, lime and toasted herbs, alongside citrus, olive, and that all-familiar Islay smoke. Supremely balanced, this collaborative bottling is Islay in a glass.

For more information on the whiskies of Islay, please visit our website.

Category: Miscellaneous