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I sit by the window

I said fate plays a game without a score, and who needs fish if you’ve got caviar? The triumph of the Gothic style would come to pass and turn you on–no need for coke, or grass. I sit by the window. Outside, an aspen. When I loved, I loved deeply. It wasn’t often. …. Link: Part of I sit by the window, Joseph Brodsky

“Perfumes to evoke memories” (Canadian interview)

Warning:may want to translate the perfume’s namebefore splashing on… Much fun had last week when Mz Harris interviewed me for her great article published across Canada – Perfumes to evoke memories – about the trend for some perfumes to smell like a specific time, place or experience. Something close to my heart and, I know from your lovely emails, for many other Wine Woman Song readers. Here is my original post about the terrifying memory recall I had when trying on the perfume Secretions Magnifique in the perfume department of Harvey Nichols in Knightsbridge. Yes, a strange experience. Link: Perfumes to evoke memories article

cruel summer: Burgundy 08

“No decent Chablis this year? Time to rob some banks…” Another cruel summer in Burgundy. Now it’s gone. If you see a lonely White Burgundy on the shelf from the 2005 vintage – snap it up. The next best are 2006s. They’re not good, but they’re not bad. Steer clear from the fat 2003s. If you remember, that’s the heatwave year when not only the vines, but people, died. Chablis needs its mineral, crystalline architecture of acid to get to its great heights. And that only happens when the fruit is not overripe and swollen by heat-loving sugar. For those with moxie, pick these vineyards for 2006 Chablis – in a few years, once everyone realises the poor 2007 and 2008 vintages, you may need to rob banks to buy them: Grand Cru Les VaudesirsLes GrenouillesLes Clos Premier Cru Les MontmainsLa Montee-de-TonnerreLes Vaillons

R.I.P. Didier Dagueneau

A black hole in the wine world with the sudden death of the great Didier Dagueneau; he crashed his microlite in the Dordogne on Wednesday. As Jancis Robinson initially posted, somehow it seems like a fitting way to go for such an adventurous person. Still, what a great loss. As I wrote only a few weeks ago, he was one of the great eccentrics of the wine world… R.I.P. Link: Didier Dagueneau dies in Decanter MagazineLink: Eccentric Winemaker Series, Pt 1: Didier Dagueneau, the wild man of Pouilly

champagne and real pain

“Captains of industry, great generals, artists of genius, even politicians, are often just people who have discovered that alcohol can enable them to make economic, tactical, creative, or political decisions whose implications would paralyze a sober individual.” – John More, in sub-TERRAIN Finest example: Winston Churchill. Pol Roger released Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill Pol Roger Vintage Champagne in 1984 to recognise Churchill’s attachment to Pol Roger, who “insisted on enjoying the wine at the most dangerous and dark periods of wartime”. My observation is Pol Roger is not as well-known the LVMH (Moet, etc) champagnes; Vintage Pol Roger, even less so, but preferred by people who have drunk too much Veuve Clicquot in their life. Link: Sir Winston Churchill and Pol Roger

This is England

One year in London to the day. “Posh Dinosaur” (an advertisement on TV here) sums up my experience in the wine industry here quite neatly, thank you very much. If you would be so kind as to watch it I’d be ever so pleased. Splendid. Wonderful. Much love, xjmd

Eccentric Winemaker series, Pt 1: Didier Dagueneau, the wild man of Pouilly

“”You idiot” are Didier Dagueneau’s first words to me….  I ask him why he chose Sauvignon Blanc to work with – “you don’t even ask yourself the question,” he says. “I had a few scores to settle with the family, so I decided to make wine, to make better wine than them. That was my first motivation. So I decided to make the best Sauvignon Blanc in the world. Not at all pretentious for someone who’s been making wine for two years.” – Decanter magazine You need strong opinions to break through traditions in the Loire, the classical heartland of France. Known as the “Wild Man of Pouilly”, Didier has been breaking conventions in the Loire for so long now it doesn’t really matter what people say – he’s now the benchmark for Sauvignon blanc around the world. The Blanc Fume de Pouilly (above) is the entry level Sauvignon Blanc, followed by Pur Sang (label shown below) and then the benchmark for Sauvignon blanc (and you could argue, the Pouilly-fume region): Silex – named after …

Pomegranate Noir, by Jo Malone (2005)

scene from Metropolis “The inspiration for Pomegranate Noir came to Jo Malone after she saw one of her friends dressed up in a red silk dress at a middle eastern hookah party all the while stuffing dollar bills in her cleavage.” – reviewer, Base Notes If you have been invited to an eccentric 81-year-old billionaire’s party in Convent Garden as a thank you for helping him hide in your cellar from his ex-wife’s (famous you-know-who) lawyer serving him notices for over £50 million, then wear Pomegranate Noir. The invitation says the party is to “commiserate a dissolute, wasted, wanton life. But fun. No flowers – come if you can.” No flowers – come if you can. An apt description of Pomegranate Noir; debauched fruit, almost bruised, and dark frankincense mixed with the eternal smells of decadence: musk and patchouli. More noir than pomegranate fruit, it almost scars the memory with it’s wickedness. In a fun way, of course. Link: Base Notes

Fate is great: flirtations with pink champagne

“Fate is Great” As fate would have it, the man who told me the story about the Romeo y Julieta Cuban cigars (previous post) was from Verona. As we stood beside a display of Champagne, I asked him which was his favourite Champagne. “Billecart-Salmon”. “Me too! (FATE!) I love the Billecart-Salmon Rosé.” “You must drink a lot of pink champagne…” Why (insecurely checking my lipstick)?? And he moved very close and said, “Because your lips are so pink.” Ah! And how does this star-crossed tale end? Let’s just say, as they do in Romeo and Juliet, that I was the very pink of courtesy. Of course. Link: Billecart-Salmon House site

Romeo y Julieta (and other great Cuban cigar names)

True, I talk of dreams,Which are the children of an idle brain,Begot of nothing but vain fantasy. Take a deep inhale from a Romeo y Julieta Cuban cigar box in saint-seducing gold. The smell is pure old-world romance. Even “cigar-box” as a note in fine Cabernet Sauvignon; I absolutely adore it. And the names of Cuban cigars are romantic. Romeo y Julieta, Montecristo… Where did the names come from? A clue is the lector (reader) stood on the factory floor and read from a novel to the the torcedores (cigar rollers) in the factory. Apparently the names of the cigars are named after the torcedores’ favourite stories. I believe it, but then I believe in romance to lift us from the humdrum everyday. Link: official site of Habanos cigars

For sensualists: Vosne-Romanée, Burgundy

Domaine Jean Tardy et Fils “Les Chaumes” 2000,Vosne-Romanée premier cru, rouge (Burgundy, France) £40 “But when from a long-distant past nothing subsists, after the people are dead, after the things are broken and scattered, taste and smell alone, more fragile but more enduring, more unsubstantial, more persistent, more faithful, remain poised a long time, like souls, remembering, waiting, hoping, amid the ruins of all the rest: and bear unflinchingly, in the tiny and almost impalpable drop of their essence, the vast structure of recollection.” – Marcel Proust, from Remembrance of Things Past All pleasures I have known: it all came back in the first taste of this excellent wine – whenever there has been a good meal with good friends, excellent conversation and a beautiful bottle of Burgundy. It all came back: friends I see, friends I no longer have the chance to see and friends who are no longer. After the first shock of recognition, what I admired next was its “refreshing” quality, not heavy, my spirit is lightened for a while afterwards. This …

breakfast of champions

“Kilgore Trout once wrote a short story which was a dialogue between two pieces of yeast. They were discussing the possible purposes of life as they ate sugar and suffocated in their own excrement. Because of their limited intelligence, they never came close to guessing that they were making champagne.” – from Breakfast of Champions or Goodbye Blue Monday, Kurt Vonnegut

10 things I wish I’d known 10 years ago

1. Three martinis are enough, really2. Always leave parties before saying goodbye3. Dawn is always going to happen again4. Boring people are boring even if they speak a foreign language5. Don’t waste liver space on average wines6. Memory is important, look after it7. Cosmopolitans are sad-girl drinks8. Champagne is excellent with food9. Experience only creates deeper and better experiences…10. No regrets – ever!

My heart belongs to Calon-Ségur

“I make my wine at Lafite and Latour, but my heart is in Calon.” – Marquis de Seguer In the late 1940s and early 1950s few Chateaux could match Château Calon-Ségur. After 1953, not another profound wine was made until the famous 1982 vintage. Link: Château Calon-Ségur – a vertical tasting, Jancis Robinson

Best-selling Manga comic about wine: Kami No Shizuki 神の雫

Two brothers on a quest to find the ultimate classic wine. A wine-critic father challenges his two sons to find 12 legendary wines. The father dies, suddenly; and it becomes a race to succeed, for whomever finds them all first will inherit the father’s £9 million cellar… Kami No Shizuki – The Drops of God – is a 10-volume Manga series so popular in Japan and South Korea sales of the featured wines shoot up 30% after they are mentioned in the series. “Any individual wine lucky enough to be name-checked can expect to sell an extra 50 cases within 48 hours,” reports The Daily Mail. The wine descriptions are brilliant: ‘Just like a classic rock concert!’ says one brother after taking a sip of a 2001 Mont-Pérat made by French winemaker Thibault Despagne. Here is a part of the comic about Rosso Miani from Fruili-Veneto region in Italy. The region is more well-known for their white wines (pinot grigio, ribolla gialla), so this is a very interesting choice, yes, and a very interesting red …

water no get enemy

If there’s no wine left, I’ll definitely try water. Just as Fela Kuti sings, water no get enemy (see song below). A real treat in Paris, apart from the excellent African musicians in the Metro (if I am not listening to Fela Kuti on the ipod), is the huge range of water on sale at the local supermarkets. They all have different tastes from the downright funky to soft-as-a-pillow. Today I had a pristine English still water called Hildon. It is the purest water I have ever tasted. Totally palate cleansing. It is even in a 750ml glass bottle, perfectly complemented to the size of a bottle of wine. Apart from San Pelligrino, with more calcium than milk, this is my new favourite water. It also has high calcium content. I know there are a lot of people against bottled water, and I know the ancient Greeks didn’t have much good to say about any water, but water has got no enemy here – bottled or tap.

quiz: what wine are you?

WW&S; is Pinot Gris More hip than most, you spot trends before they even really get started. If something is new and unique, you know about it… and you’ve probably tried it. You have a good number of projects, interests, and relationships – but they are all fleeting. The world is so appealing and diverse, you can’t help but seek variety. Deep down you are: A true flirt Your partying style: Exclusive. You only party with people you’ve personally selected. Link: Quiz: What Kind of Wine Are You?

honkeyfinger: invocation of the demon other

“Anybody singing the blues is in a deep pit yelling for help.” – Mahalia Jackson at Rick Saunders breaks his silence On my first or second night after arriving in London I heard about a night called, Not the Same Old Blues Crap, and you know I got a bit upset when I saw it, almost offended. That’s my music you’re talking about. You punks! Ha! OK, the blues is a loaded word in itself, meaning different things to different people. Sure, I agree – there are too many boring Budweiser advertising types play their three chords at their 5oth birthday party… blah. If that is you, no need to read any further. Still here? Good. Then you’ll like Honkeyfinger’s new album called Invocation of the Demon Other. It is listening in the n’th dimension. This is what the harp sounds like very far away in another galaxy. The minor blues keys in distortion twanged the aorta vessel in my heart so much it hurt. That’s pretty much my working definition of the blues (when …

get your fizz on

Courtney Love gets her fizz on A new book on the history of hooch: Drink: A Cultural History of Alcohol, By Iain Gately. Gotham Books. “Real French Champagne was sweet but still. When the English imported it to their warm cellars in the 1660s, it went through a second fermentation and turned bubbly—sacrilege to the French, but soon de rigueur overseas…. One of Drink’s most fascinating subplots, as it turns out, is humanity’s apparently universal contempt for water. In ancient Greece, water drinkers “were believed not only to lack passion but also to exude a noxious odor”” Link: A History of Hooch – New York Magazine

Fattoria Le Terrazze and rainy day women

Bob Dylan: “they’ll stone you at the breakfast table” Fattoria Le Terrazze Rosso Conero Sassi Neri 2003 On the pavement outside a pub on 4-lane Whitechapel Road in peak hour under an ominously dark sky. Feeling like a Rainy Day Woman. Friend walks past with a half a bottle under his arm. Works in the City. Half cut from schmoozing with clients at some big buck$ lunch. In a 45 minute lunch ordered £500 worth of wine (4 bottles for 3 people??). Sure, I’ll drink your capitalist scraps. Especially if it’s a Fattoria Le Terrazze red. Fattoria Le Terrazze are the same people who make Bob Dylan’s specially requested wine, IGT Planet Waves. Damn my champagne tastes on a beer budget. Rush inside pub and grab a couple of wine glasses. This wonderful subdued Montepulciano wine hums along to the call to prayer from the Whitechapel Mosque across the road. After 5 years in the bottle, the cedar oak beautifully integrated with the fruit; now light as red silk. Things slowed down. Even Whitechapel Road. …

warm leatherette

Grace Jones at Meltdown Festival, Royal Festival Hall London, June 20, 2008: ‘Warm Leatherette’, one of the songs that broke her out of the underground in 1980, is a JG Ballard-derived track that sexualises a car crash. Tonight it is a singalong. ‘You sing “warm”, motherfuckers!’ commands Jones, holding two cymbals up threateningly. It’s always tempting to use “WARM leatherette” to describe some red wines. Sometimes I have a secret desire to yell out WARRRM at red wine tastings in sterile tastings room. And also, my other favourite line: Quick, let’s make love before we die! Link: Live Reviews: Thoroughly modern millinery – Guardian

Cinematic Wines – Pt 3: Gérard Depardieu

“I’d far rather work with wine-makers than actors. They don’t talk as much. If you have to explain a film as an actor or director, or even your wine as a winemaker, you lose the mystery. “It is like asking Mozart where he found all those notes and what made him put them in that particular order.” Unlike Depardieu’s famous character, Cyrano de Bergerac, it appears Depardieu’s nose has done him well. With women… and wine. Since the early 80s, Gérard Depardieu has been making wines in partnership with renegade winemaker, Bernard Magrez. He has seven labels made from vineyards in Bordeaux, Languedoc in the south of France, as well as in Spain, Morocco and Argentina. Depardieu unashamedly lives large. His wines have a New World taste, even the French wines have a happy, almost jolly, fruit-driven feel. The Gérard Depardieu Toro Spiritus Sancti – from Spain, Castilla y León, Toro – is a 100% Tempranillo. Very dark and smoky with coffee and toasty oak. The moral of Cyrano, as well as, Depardieu and his …

Cinematic Wines – Pt 2: Francis Ford Coppola

Francis Ford Coppola Director’s Cut Russian River Valley Chardonnay 2007 Apocalypse Now? I anticipated bombs of creamy fruit with splinters of big American oak. Instead, the Director’s Cut shows a skillful edit of the blockbuster Californian Chardonnay. The label gives you an idea of what’s inside. The label is a Zoetrope of a girl skipping (zoetropes produced the illusion of movement in the days before film). There’s nothing static about this wine. It’s non-stop and zippy: demanding to be enjoyed now before you’re sleeping with the fishes. Racy, fresh palate – just like sinking your teeth into a green apple – balanced by a smooth malo-lactic fermentation and a slight vanillin oak touch. There’s a lot of sunshine here. Rather surprisingly, from a Director renowned for exploring man, darkly. For more in the Cinematic Wine Series: Previous Post: Bandol and BardotLink: Francis Ford Coppola presents (the wine portfolio)

Cinematic Wines – Pt 1: Bandol and Bardot

Brigitte Bardot as Camille Javal in Le Mepris, 1963 (Contempt) Camille Javal: You like all of me? My mouth? My eyes? My nose? And my ears?Paul Javal: Yes, all of you.Camille Javal: Then you love me… totally?Paul Javal: Yes. Totally… tenderly… tragically. Welcome to Part I in Wine Woman Song’s 6-part July series on cinematic wines. This summer WWS will bring you wines that live in full Cinemascope so you can make the most of the sunshine. Let’s start with the brightest film of the twentieth century, Godard’s Le Mépris (Contempt) and a glass of Rosé from Bandol AOC. Brigitte Bardot’s natural home is St Tropez, near Bandol, in Provence, which is famous for it’s dry Rosé. It’s a perfect match to the film, Le Mépris, a caustic analysis of a marriage breakdown filmed in scorching Technicolor. Starring Brigitte Bardot, the film is composed in bold splashes of red, yellow, white, and blue. This is Godard painting with Technicolor. If you imagine how crystal refracts sunlight into its primary colours, you could say Bandol Rosé …

snack attack

What the food critics really eat. “AA Gill, at Woodall Services on the M1 nearSheffield bought three packets of crispsincluding Walkers Sensations, Thai Sweet Chiliand a grab bag of Ready Salted.” Five stars. Link: from popbitch

Jay-Z at Glastonbury LIVE

“Under My Umbrella, ella, ella“ Live and direct. Jay-Z comes on stage with a guitar playing Wonderwall, by Oasis. Plays a few badass chords and then lets the crowd sing the rest. OK, Jay-Z is a genius. The controversy is over. He’s got the crowd on “hello”. Glastonbury is more than just a music festival here. It’s a rite of passage, as well as a tradition. When Jay-Z was billed as headliner it was seen as controversial (especially with Noel “hip-hop has no place at Glastonbury” Gallagher from Oasis) but he won the 150,000-plus strong crowd over (whether they needed winning over) with a nod to the locals: Prodigy, Smack My Bitch Up; Amy Winehouse, Rehab…. straight up in the first few minutes. “If you didn’t catch my name, it’s Jay-Z.” Thanks Jay-Z, I think we got it. And it will take a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back. “I’ve got one thing to say”, said Jay-Z and then came 99 problems, punched out with AC/DC’s Back in Black for the last two verses. …

woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown

Rossy de Palma! One of the stars from my all-time favourite film, Pedro Almodóvar’s Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios), now has her own fragrance: Rossy de Palma Eau de Protection by Etat Libre d’Orange. Rossy de Palma wanted her fragrance to be based on red roses. Sure, Eau de Protection has roses. Red roses an angry lover might throw back in your face. Don’t try to get yourself out of this one – thorns, blood and scattered rose petals on the bitumen – you arsehole. It’s not your usual pretty rose-based perfume. And it’s all the better for it. Angular, sharp and edgy – hey, it is Rossy de Palma’s signature scent after all. So it’s also ironic, cool and has plenty of sly wit. A rich hippy patchouli note is toughened up by a good hit of black pepper, astringent ginger and tannic bergamot (Earl Grey tea). *Breathe* Can you handle it? Are you sure? It’s a Spanish rose, darkly. Mz Darkly sez, …

the taste of others

SG & Jane Birkin Not everyone has the same taste. I like slightly dirty wines. So what has happened to French white wines recently? Things seem lighter, fruitier, cleaner. I champion the screw cap, but it’s not so much because I want more fruit taste, but because I don’t like spending money on a corked wine. But corked wine is not what I mean when I say dirty. What I mean is, in a Chardonnay, when the secondary malo-lactic characters taste closer to an aged Roquefort cheese, rather than Kraft slices. Good old-fashioned French white burgundy smells like tangy sex, often has a dismissive gesture of fruit, and can be difficult and demanding. How refreshing: wine that is not f**king refreshing. French wines, even Italian wines, are becoming fresher and fruitier to compete in the crowded UK market. Pause…sip ice water…continue. This afternoon I had a Chardonnay tasting, and even the most opulent French wine could only be described as “Opulent Lite” – especially compared to burgundies I tasted 5 years ago. Is it the …

Marlene Dietrich and David Bowie

  “Dancing, music, champagne.  The best way to forget… until you find something you want to remember.” – Marlene Dietrich, in Just A Gigolo, Schöner Gigolo, armer Gigolo (1978).   Link: Schöner Gigolo, armer Gigolo (1978)

Bon Iver: For Emma, forever ago

“Justin Vernon moved to a remote cabin in the woods of Northwestern Wisconsin at the onset of winter. Tailing from the swirling breakup of his long time band (DeYarmond Edison), he escaped to the property and surrounded himself with simple work, quiet, and space. He lived there alone for three months, filling his days with wood splitting and other chores around the land. This special time slowly began feeding a bold, uninhibited new musical focus.” – At Rough Trade Records, where I first listened to this album, they had written beside the CD: Is this the best album of 2008, already? Big statement. All I know is the gentle folk sound really comes into its own on a Sunday morning. For Emma brings back memories of John Lennon’s dreamy, syrupy acoustic sound in Double Fantasy. And it makes me hungry! Listening to this album makes me want pancakes for breakfast drowned in maple syrup… yum. This is a beautiful folk album, especially on a lazy Sunday morning, and definitely one of the best folk …


“Because half of the world’s vanilla crop is grown in Madagascar, the whole island smells like vanilla ice cream.” Link: Rob Brezsny

Let’s Get Lost: Chet Baker by Bruce Weber

“Some people don’t have enough ears to tell the difference” – Chet Baker in Bruce Weber’s documentary, Let’s Get Lost, when asked if people confused him with Miles Davis, and every other trumpet player from the era. An immaculate woman in her 70s sat in front of me in the cinema, by herself, dressed in a summer suit with her ash-blonde coiffure blow dried to candy floss perfection. It is 2.30 in the afternoon. With perfect red manicured nails, she kept checking the mirror in her gold compact. And then I realized, she was wiping away tears – only fifteen minutes into the film. Almost blue. Almost doing the things we used to do,there’s a girl hereand she’s almost you. Oh! Why the tears? Perhaps she was once one of the girls in the film? Maybe she knew Chet, and there was a time when she happily flirted with disaster? Or, perhaps like Chet said in the film about himself, all her friends and lovers are no longer here? Maybe it’s just the way he …

Ogio Puglia Primitivo 2007

There’s sauce and there’s sauce and then there’s sauce. The first is the sauce you add to pasta, the second is slang for alcohol (“on the sauce”) and the third is the uniquely english approach to sex; a bit naughty and saucy: ooh-er, missus! Ogio Puglia Primitivo 2007 is all three. Alone, it’s ok, nothing really to write home about – good price from Tesco, etc. But wait. The clove and chocolate character, with the typical italian chewy bitterness (slight chinotto) picks up the flavours in the meal (beef parmesan ravioli). The whole wine and food thing has created a new dimension: 1 + 2 = 3. Exactly like a sauce does with food. The wine itself is a mellow 13%. And the label design is typically Italian and definitely sexy. Although, is it naughty? With the right person, and food, it could well be. Something Pirelli, even. Link: Ogio Puglia Primitivo 2007

in love

A happy photo from where I live in London. He looks like he is in love! Wine Woman & Song HEART photography by Yvan Rodic. Link: Face Hunter: on the street, soho + fitzrovia + brick lane, 14 June 2008

Valentine by John Fuller

The things about you I appreciate may seem indelicate: I’d like to find you in the shower and chase the soap for half an hour. I’d like to have you in my power and see your eyes dilate. I’d like to have your back to scour and other parts to lubricate. Sometimes I feel it is my fate to chase you screaming up a tower or make you cower by asking you to differentiate Nietzsche from Schopenhauer. I’d like successfully to guess your weight and win you at a fete. I’d like to offer you a flower. I like the hair upon your shoulders falling like water over boulders. I like the shoulders, too: they are essential. Your collar-bones have great potential (I’d like all your particulars in folders marked Confidential). I like your cheeks, I like your nose, I like the way your lips disclose the neat arrangement of your teeth (half above and half beneath) in rows. I like your eyes, I like their fringes. The way they focus on me gives me …

first of the summer wine

2003 Savennieres Clos du Papillon from Domaine des Baumard (Loire) Summer always feels like a new idea in London. Yesterday the weather man on the BBC said it was the end of the Summer weather. *After three days of sunshine* Well, I don’t give up that easily! This can’t be the last of the summer wine, it’s only June – glamdammit! I want the first of the summer wines first… And what is more Summer than a butterfly (papillon)? This wine is sourced from a butterfly-shaped vineyard in the Loire and is full of pear, peach and lime characters. All it needs is a park and some sunshine… Or just forget that. Use your imagination. It is London, after all. The weather just is… weather. Link: Domaine des Baumard or Leon Stolarski fine wines

What wine would Nick Cave drink?

If I was to recommend Nick Cave a wine, it’d be a black wine from Cahors. Some wines aspire to ring-tones, these wines are epic ballads. They take some time to yield in the glass, they are not instant and fun, you could say they are gruff and unfriendly; but once the story in the glass unfolds, it’s worth the wait. Cahors, in South West France, has been a wine region since Bordeaux was only a swamp. Yet, they’ve only been accepted as an French wine appellation since 1971. They’re the outsider; dark, gothic and medieval, which makes me like them even more…. If you live in the UK try these “easy-to-drink” examples, all under £10, for a night, darkly: • 2004 Cahors, Le Petit Clos Triguedina (Waitrose) Blackberry and graphite flavours minus usual mouth-puckering  • 2005 Cahors, Château Gaudou, Tradition (Majestic) Distinct licorice flavours with some Merlot to soften it out • 2002 Château Paillas Cahors (Nicholas) Classic Malbec aroma with spicy black fruit Listening to: Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! by Nick Cave. All things …

Jack The Ripper Slash Bansky

The Decapitator’s Flickr photostream An anonymous East Londoner handy with a knife – sound familiar? Exactly one hundred and twenty years after the Jack the Ripper murders, his ghost still looms large around his old stomping ground through an anonymous graffiti artist who decapitates ad posters. Blink. You may miss it. Like this one for Uniqlo on Shoreditch High Street/Old Street E1. Or the truly ghoulish Carrie Bradshaw in the Sex and the City movie poster on Mare Street in Hackney. Despite many people at the time claiming to be Jack the Ripper, the case remains unsolved. The most famous confession letter began, “Dear Boss…” in cut-out words from the newspaper. Decapitated advertising in 21st-century East London? This is “Dear Boss,” writ large. Link: Mysterious Headless corpses found all over London

Cocorosie presents Loris Gréaud’s Cellar Door

When people tell me that I know how this story is going to end I usually tell them: wait till the end and you will see yourself… From Loris Gréaud’s Cellar Door exhibition. What is the sound of two galaxies colliding? Something like this. On Saturday night at the ICA in London, Cocorosie, will be interpreting the score for the Opera of Loris Gréaud’s Cellar Door exhibition, “Once is Always Twice”. The Opera – scored by Thomas Roussel and with a libretto by Raimundas Malašauskas and Aaron Schuster – will be staged at the Paris Opera at the end of the year. More black champagne, please! Link: This Saturday, 8pm, at the ICA, LondonLink: Wine, Woman & Song’s take on Cellar Door and after-tremors.