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Hello! :) Introduce yourself



Welcome, James! :smiley:

Living in Hampshire, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get involved in the wine trade! :smile: Your pick of award-winning wineries!

A few diploma graduates here (not me - yet!) including @hugofount @horsleym and @Freddy so I’m sure there’s lots of advice handy if you need any. :relaxed:


Thank you Laura :grinning:


Hi Bargainbob. I’m with you on that one. A fantastic wine at the price!


SO GREAT to see lots of new people join us just in time for the next #twstaste event next week. Please do introduce yourselves here and take a read through other’s introductions to get to know your fellow members.

We’re grateful you’ve joined us and look forward to sharing great wine (beer & spirits) related stories together


Welcome @Voltemand! The Weinert Cabernet has a cult following around here. An absolute belter of a wine!


Hallo all. I’m Philip, a WineSoc member for about 14 years, but seriously interested in wine for much longer. Hoping to make contact with other Society members (and maybe interested others) in the vicinity of Chandlers Ford in Hampshire, for sharing good wine and food, and comparing notes.

Through my father’s work, I was lucky to be introduced to high-quality wine (mostly Bordeaux, Burgundy, Loire and Stellenbosch) at a young age, in New Zealand. Back then, NZ had no significant international wine presence, but wine had been made there, in tiny quantities, for nearly 100 years, largely by immigrants from the Balkans or Lebanon and by Catholic missionaries. Much of what was sold to the undiscerning public was excruciatingly bad, but many of the winemaking families made some pretty good stuff for themselves and their friends. As a bonus of one of my many jobs while going through university, I was fortunate to get to know a couple of the families and to be able to access a few bottles regularly at “mate’s rates”. My wife and I left NZ shortly after that for the UK via LA, the only place (until very recently) where we’ve ever had the courage to send back a restaurant wine - an overly-oaked chardonnay. It has taken a long time to throw off my distrust of US wines. Soon after that, however, we sampled a superb riesling on a hillside overlooking the beautiful Ahr valley on a glorious summer day and our love affair with German riesling has never wavered since then! Now, we keep wine from all over the world, dominated by our tried and true preferences, though we’re always ready to try something new. The wheel has turned full circle, as we now have a little bach (holiday home) in New Zealand, overlooking the Marlborough Sounds! Of course the NZ wine scene has changed out of all sight, but it’s still quite small-scale and local and a fair few family-run wineries remain. By chance, over the last southern hemisphere summer, we found ourselves sitting and chatting with Jane Hunter (Mirumiru, Stoneburn and a Society’s Exhibition wine producer) in a water taxi.

Congratulations: New Member(s) of the Month
Wine and food appreciation in Chandlers Ford - does it exist?

Hi Philip, I’m Tom and I live in Winchester so not far at all. I’d be up for a Hampshire-based community event!


Welcome to the Community, Philip. Get digging for that Kauri gum! So many Balkan families indeed - Babich, Fistonich (Villa Maria), Jukic (Montana, now Brancott Estate), Nobilo, Brajkovich (Kumeu River), Delegat, Selak …
I was Babich’s UK brand manager in a previous life, am a huge fan of Kumeu River, makers of our Exhibition Chardonnay and of course our Society’s Sauvignon Blanc is made by Villa Maria. I am, however, yet to visit the land of the long white cloud …


Thanks for your reply, Tom,. It’s good to hear that you’re keen to be part of a local group. Of course, Winchester is just up the road from Chandlers Ford, with a good bus service to get us home, in the absence of a willing chauffeur/euse! There probably are already such groups around in our area, but it’s hard to find them. I hope there will be others in the Wine Soc who might contact us to help push this forward but I regret that CF, at least, is a bit of a social backwater where people keep to themselves and their established groups of friends. It’s hard to credit that it was, in the late 1970’s, named as a UK centre of partner-swapping (or perhaps that amounts to much the same thing)!

If you know of others, Wine Soc members or not, who might be interested in the idea of a wine and food appreciation group, it might be a good idea to sound them out. I wasn’t thinking so much of an event, rather a regular meeting (say monthly) of 5-10 people at each other’s homes to try various wines and pairings with food. I’m wide open to any other ideas, though. We can probably all benefit from trying new wines and comparing notes with others. I know I would! We must keep in touch, pending gathering a useful-sized group.


Thanks, Ewan. I’m with you re Kumeu River. I fondly remember a Society dinner, with Michael Brajkovich hosting on behalf of Kumeu River, on HMS Warrior in the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, several years ago. I was equally impressed by the Warrior, as by KR wines!

No kauri gum in Marlborough, regrettably, as there aren’t any kauris in the South Island. They don’t grow much south of Auckland. Rata, totara, kahikatea, and rimu compensate, as well as abundant southern beech, manuka, kanuka , ponga (silver fern) and others.

If you do ever make that overdue trip to Aotearoa, get in touch. We’d be delighted to have you to stay in our bach, just over 20 minutes from the Wairau valley vineyards. Pretty spectacular scenery, too. Oh, and bring a pan. Rumour has it that there’s still gold in a few Marlborough rivers.


A few Kauri have been planted in the South. The South Island’s largest is in Nelson, but relative to the real deal it resembles a large twig!

Welcome to the Community from someone who absolutely loves NZ and their wines in equal measure


Thanks Nick. Yes, well, there’s probably a kauri tree somewhere in the UK, too, but I doubt that it will ever get much beyond a stunted specimen, any more than the Nelson tree is likely to do, not that any of us will still be alive to confirm that. Of course, there are cordyline australis (New Zealand cabbage tree) and numerous other New Zealand plants littered across southern England’s private and public gardens, and we’ve got a Japanese maple and a palm tree (and a flourishing kowhai, which I recall arrived as a seed in a certain progenitor’s shoe) in our UK garden.

Actually, the remnants of the great kauri forests of New Zealand’s North Island are presently under serious threat from die-back disease. Regrettably, despite the excellent work of its Department of Conservation, and the impression given by tourism ads, New Zealand doesn’t have a great record of conserving its unique and fragile natural environment. After the clearance of huge swathes of native forest (“bush”) in the 19th and early 20th century, the increasingly intensive farming and exotic forestry industries are causing major problems. The conversion of many farms to vineyards is generally seen to be less damaging, though there are concerns about monoculture development and the depletion of water resources to keep the vines growing on the relatively dry eastern sides of both major islands. Go on enjoying NZ wines, though, as I prefer to see vineyards stretching into the distance, rather than having waterways stuffed up by cow-poo and the rubbish from forestry.



I’m Peter and very pleased to have found the Forum (or maybe the Forum found me!) I have been a member of TWS for about ten years I live in South West London with my wife. Since retirement from working in the law, we have been able to devote more time to foreign travel.

Prior to the arrival of the Forum I was content to order a mixed case of wine on a fairly routine basis, but I think I will now start to chose my wine on a bottle-by-bottle approach, taking into the account the views and recommendations of other members.

Looking forward to reading, and contributing to, the new group!


Welcome, Peter! :smiley: Great to hear you’re looking for inspiration for which bottles to choose from your fellow members here - be prepared for your online Wish List to get verrrrrry crowded. :wink:


Hello Philip I’m based in Southampton. I belong to a wine tasting club based at Uni of Southampton at the Highfield Campus. You don’t need to be staff or post grad to join but you do need either to be in walking distance or use public transport/push bike :wink::crazy_face:

Let me know if you are interested and I’ll send you details. @tom you might be interested too if you are in range of Bluestar 1 bus which gets you quite close. Otherwise up for a community get together too.

Me and Mr @jaykay are Riesling fans too: German, Alsace, NZ, some nice Aussie ones on a recent trip.


I think you might mean @tfpywfpy - not sure the Bluestar goes by Tottenham :smile:


Thanks for the information. In an earlier life, I was on the UoS staff for 13 years and I still go to the Highfield campus fairly often, so I know it pretty well. Bluestar 1 is very convenient for me. Certainly I’d be interested to join the group, so would be grateful if you sent me further details via the private message route. I’m still keen to get something more informal going in the Chandlers Ford/Winchester area also, but it needs a viable number to get started.



Hi Everyone
I have just made my first post thIs evening and been directed here via a very kind member. I have been a member for at least five years and only just found this area from an article in the latest Society News.
I live in Enfield with my wife - we share our home with Jimmy our Standard Schnauzer - well he lets us stay as he is in charge. Our two children have left home but always seem to come home at weekends!
I am lucky that I am able to get to the WS showroom every two months to stock up. I only drink red wine and mainly French and Spanish wine. This is a complete change for me as I previously kept to Australian wine. I am always trying new wines so open to recommendations.
Glad that I have found this area and hope to contribute on various posts


Hi all

I’ve only been a member for a few months but I’m loving it!
I live in the Midlands with my two children and have lots of interests, a big one being wine!


Welcome @Nicola1977, glad you’ve come to join us! We are a very friendly bunch here. If you are looking for food/wine matches or just a running commentary of the Eurovision, you’ve come to the right place :rofl:! We are all wine lovers here so get stuck in and hopefully we
Can help you and vice verse with recommendations! @robert_mcintosh and @laura are admins so any technical issues etc… you can either ask on here or message direct ! Good to have you onboard :+1::wink: