Tim's Blog
Posts Posts by: "Tim Syrad"

Both Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies kicked off their 2020 calendar of events with a snapshot look at a selection of top class Australian wines – the majority of which a number of us had visited while on tour in November 2019. With the terrible bushfires affecting so many people and with a number of…(Read More)

Over three tastings at Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies we explored neighbouring countries, whose wine cultures have taken somewhat different directions. Hungary, with a long winemaking tradition, particularly around the Tokaj region, has struggled in recent years to establish a position for itself in the modern pantheon of wines.  While sweet Tokaji wines have a…(Read More)

Last week at Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies we took ourselves on a journey up the Loire Valley and back again.  Loire wines tend to suffer from being from a region that everyone thinks they know well (think Sleeping Beauty chateaux), with some wine list regulars (think Muscadet, Sancerre and Anjou Rosé), but lacking a…(Read More)

In April I ran a Bordeaux Left Bank fine wine tasting with dinner at Le Salon Privé in St Margarets.  It was a great opportunity to explore just how different the wines are from different AOCs within the Médoc region. The famous 1855 classification ‘set in stone’ a five level hierarchy of the best…(Read More)

The famous regions of Rioja and Ribera del Duero were the focus of the Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies’ March/early April tastings and we enjoyed three very buoyant nights. Of course, it is impossible to do justice to these wines in just one tasting, but what showed through was some stunning fruit filled quality…(Read More)

Our Giro d’Italia masterclass on 19th March was a celebration of top class Italian wines as we toured from the most north eastern tip, close to the Slovenian border, all the way down to Sicily. Italy is a never ending source of wine exploration and exhibits the most extraordinary diversity of grape and style…(Read More)

Tuscany with a Twist


Thank you to everyone who braved the cold this week to kick off the Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies 2019 tastings. We had a fantastic turnout over the three nights. Tuscany with a Twist was our theme, as we endeavoured to explore some of the lesser known facets of the region as well as celebrate…(Read More)

Happy New Year!


Welcome to 2019, which will be a great year for wine lovers in Richmond, Twickenham and Teddington! The tastings for Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies have been scheduled on the website, do take a look, and save the dates, and you can book your place now for our January tastings, where we focus on Tuscany…(Read More)

The Richmond Wine Society reached a very exciting new wine frontier last week as we explored the wines of China. We had a huge turnout over the two nights which reflects well on the insatiable wine curiosity (or is it thirst) that our membership has. The development and growth of China’s wine industry has…(Read More)

Continuing my preview of our exciting lineup of wineries represented at our New Zealand tasting this month. James and Annie Millton established Millton Vineyards and Winery in 1984. Their four individual dry farmed vineyards are situated on the East Coast of New Zealand in the wine appellation of Gisborne. Located just a few kilometres from…(Read More)

Our celebration of New Zealand’s Family of Twelve approaches, and I’ve been reminding myself about the wineries whose wines we will be tasting. Twelve independent wine producers from across the two islands, who share best practice but retain very distinct personalities, including: Kumeu River, the most northern of the family, whose vineyards are…(Read More)

Bacco was packed out for our March masterclass as we focussed on the superb red wines of Domaine Mongeard-Mugneret. Situated in the hallowed village of Vosne-Romanée just to the north of Nuits St Georges, the estate dates back to the 1920’s when the two families merged their vineyards but the Mongeard…(Read More)

Our Saturday cheese course sessions are designed to be a little bit more relaxed but cover more ground with more wines and cheese spread over three hours. The France & England afternoon soon became a contest as we matched similar style cheese from each country against each other and paired them with a French wine…(Read More)

Our Monday evening Cheese Course is well under way and our focus on 6th February was on the cheese and wines of Italy. There is no question  that Italy is a worthy rival to France in both departments – in particular the fact that Italy produces almost as many cheeses and many more wines. We tasted…(Read More)

Our 2017 Monday night cheese course kicked off last night with France as our destination. With over 370 recognised cheeses and probably a host more that don’t find their way onto the register, France is often seen as the centre of the cheese universe. Rightly so on the basis of the nine cheeses we…(Read More)

Richmond and Teddington Wine Societies visited Spain last week in what was deliberately a Rioja Free occasion. The theme was Spanish innovation and we took a good look at a number of lesser known regions and some wonderful local grapes. No one can dispute the success of Rioja and their importance to the Spanish wine…(Read More)

I have been delighted by the response to the courses I am running on cheese and wine in January and February.  As you know, I am passionate about wine and its amazing partner, cheese.  Over four weeks I will broaden people’s cheese horizons – tasting cheese that is absolutely in prime condition, and sampling some…(Read More)

We are updating the website and Facebook page with all of the events we are running at Richmond, Teddington and St Margarets this year and it is a fabulous line up of topics. We will celebrate the Old World, the New World and the Newest of the New World – our Richmond tasting in April…(Read More)

Last night 40 of us enjoyed an evening of exploration at Le Salon Privé in St Margarets. Our destination was Burgundy, and the objective was to compare and contrast, and enjoy, some wines from the fascinating region.  We didn’t venture to the Mâconnais, but the Côtes de Nuits, Beaune and Chalonnaise provided…(Read More)

There was a phenomenal turnout of over 50 people for Teddington Wine Society’s tasting of Portuguese wines last Friday. Excited by the prospect of an eclectic, wide ranging tasting of indigenous grapes and an exploration of some of the lesser known valleys and regions, we took over the main stage of the Landmark rather…(Read More)

Over February, March and April we have completed our Bordeaux trilogy: the Left Bank comprising the Medoc, Margaux, Pauillac and similar famous communes; the Right bank – Saint Emilion & Pomerol;  and Graves which also incorporated Sauternes. It is impossible to do justice to Bordeaux in one sitting, so the opportunity to focus on specific…(Read More)

Portuguese wines were the focus for the RWS tasting last night at the Britannia in a wide ranging and boisterous evening! Easter holiday mood was clearly in the air or was it the influence of fortified wine? It is impossible to do justice to such an important wine producing nation in one event but we…(Read More)

Valduero revisited


At Richmond Wine Society on Wednesday and Thursday and at Teddington tonight we explore the wines of Valduero. Probably the most memorable visit of the tour I ran in 2012 based in Valladolid was to Valduero.  One of the longest established wineries in Ribera del Duero, on our visit we enjoyed an amazing tour of…(Read More)

A visit to Piedmont


We kicked off this year’s  tastings with a visit to Piedmont at the Teddington wine society. This is a favourite wine area of mine and while the region is famous for  Barolo and Barbaresco there is a wealth of other fascinating wines to be discovered. About an hour east of the lovely town of…(Read More)

The wine trade is buzzing with all the latest developments in Chile at the moment. Numerous journalists and correspondents are sallying back and forth to review the latest vineyards and grape developments. Indeed, I shall be sallying forth in a couple of weeks to do just that, perhaps in a more leisurely way – on…(Read More)

At Richmond Wine Society on Tuesday and Wednesday nights we tasted our way through some wines that for me, defined what the annual wine awards are about.       It’s easy to see these awards as the industry trying to drum up some hype, but my experience over the last few years has…(Read More)

The first of this year’s medal winning tastings took place at Teddington last night.  This is a much anticipted event as we reveal some of the best wines judged at this year’s wine competitions.  As always our focus was on gold medal and trophy winning wines, and this year’s results have delivered…(Read More)

English sparkling wine was our theme for the early July tasting and as the temperature gauge hit 35 degrees we sweltered through a fabulous selection of top class fizz from Hampshire, West Sussex and Dorset, assisted by some examples from Champagne, Franciacorta and Argentina. English fizz is on the ascendant and the wines are regularly…(Read More)

Last night, a select group from Teddington Wine Society convened at my house to sample the delights of the Loire Valley. These lovely wines, which I had previously shown to Richmond Wine Society at the end of May, once again demonstrate the breadth and diversity of the Loire region. Everyone agreed that the Muscadet de…(Read More)