Initial success: how to celebrate passing the MW


Today 10 new Masters of Wine have been announced – including our very own Barbara Drew. After three intensive years of study, we asked her what she’ll be uncorking in celebration of those two hard-earned initials…

After many sleepless nights and hours of gut-wrenching nervousness, a cup of tea was in fact first on my list of things to drink this morning after I received that wondrous phone call confirming that I had completed all of the requirements and become a Master of Wine (one of only 380 in the world).

Nerves settled however, and my thoughts immediately turned to what drinks would be suitable to celebrate such an achievement. Top of the list is of course Champagne, but as befits my particular passion for lesser-known styles, the one that fits the bill is the 2011 Champagne Fleury, Notes Blanches. Made from one of the four “forgotten” Champagne grapes, this is 100 percent Pinot Blanc, with a fresh and slightly tropical fruit character. Perfect for midday drinking.

On Sunday, meanwhile, at a lazy lunch with friends gathered from the four corners of the island, it will have to be something more classic, something unearthed from an old cellar a couple of years ago: 1974 Ch. Giscours. To be honest, whether it will have stood the test of time is a question even the MW has not prepared me for – as they say, there is no such thing as a good wine, merely good bottles of wine. Perhaps some of the bottles will have fallen by the wayside in their 44-year evolution, perhaps some will turn out to be beautifully preserved gems. Either way, opening them and celebrating the capriciousness and deliciousness of wine, with friends, is what it is truly all about.

Barbara Drew MW is a Wine and Spirits Education Specialist in our Events team.