You Had Me At Merlot

Gorey Wine Cellar is delighted to welcome one of the worldʼs leading wine experts and influential wine writers to Jersey next month – the very charming and entertaining Matthew Jukes.

The Roadshow which is kindly sponsored by Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management will take place in the Assembly Room at the Town Hall on Thursday 7th March from 5.30pm – 7.30pm. Tickets (£30) are selling fast and must be purchased in advance from Gorey Wine Cellar or online at

Part of Matthew’s job is to taste over 40,000 wines every year – that’s an average of over a hundred every day; so even if you manage to taste all 50 wines at the event, that is merely a half day’s work for this man!

Matthew has been MoneyWeek’s wine writer for over a decade and the Daily Mail wine writer for its Weekend section for nearly 20 years, his column being the most keenly followed in the UK with 9 million readers every week. 

Every year Matthew compiles his 100 Best Australian Wines report which is commonly regarded as a true barometer of the finest Aussie wines on the shelves in the UK each year. Matthew then takes a selection of wines from his report ‘on the road’ throughout the UK, to China and now for the third year running to Jersey.

We were lucky enough to nab an interview with Matthew ahead of his visit: 

What made you decide to get into the wine industry?

I ducked out of a Physics Degree in London after drinking a lot of bitter, writing a paper on how a boomerang flies and also playing some pretty brutal rugby. Physics didn’t feature highly on my list of activities in my first year at Uni, but wine and food did. My mother was teaching at Prue Leith’s Cookery School in Kensington and at a wine lecture there, I walked up to the lecturer and told him that I knew everything that he was teaching and wasn’t that a little odd for a 19-year-old? I had always been obsessed with wine labels, looking them up in our Atlas and remembering the various regions and villages. The lecture concurred and suggested a job in the industry. I quit my degree and hopped on my bike and headed down to Barnes Wine Shop to line up an interview. This happened 32 years ago and I have never looked back. 

What is your favourite type of wine and why? 

You will hear this answer a lot from members of the wine trade, but I adore great white and red Burgundy. Nothing comes close to stellar bottles of these two styles of wine, but they are rare and there are often expensive Burgundies which promise the world and often fail to impress. I still think that top Chablis, as regards white wine, is a flavour which is phenomenal, and yet most commonly available Chablis is lacklustre. Perhaps a more interesting reply to the question is Barolo; I have made it one of my vinous missions to spread the knowledge and appreciation of this wine. 

What’s your happiest wine drinking experience?

I have hundreds of amazing wine memories and most of them involve my wife, Amelia, as she is also in the wine business.  There is nothing like sharing a bottle of delicious wine with the right food in the right location.

How much do you spend on a bottle on average for wine to have with a meal at home? 

I usually hang out in the £8 – £15 zone. This is the sweetspot these days and it is where the vast majority of my recommendations lie. There is no need to spend more unless you are after decent sparkling wines (Champagne style) which start at twenty quid. It is a myth to say that you get more flavour the more you pay.  

Where is your favourite place to have a drink? 

Juveniles Wine Bar in Paris. It has the most wonderful atmosphere, the food is simple and delicious and the wine list is stunning value for money.

Matthew’s thoughts, recommendations and tasting notes are followed very closely by the wine world at large and we are so lucky to have him over to Jersey, thanks to Gorey Wine Cellar who organise this fantastic annual event.  

If you would like to taste an epic range of 50 Aussie wines including well known Estates such as Leeuwin, Jim Barry, Howard Park, Yabby Lake & Paringa Estate, get your friends and colleagues together or invite your clients as this is a tasting not to be missed.