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Man made Whites - Muller-Thurgau, Phoenix, Solaris etc?


That explains it - thanks for clarifying, @peterm! :smiley:


Curious about the environment and details of man-made crossing, I found this video showing how it is done now, and thought it was interesting enough to share


Hiya Peter!
Sorry about that - I just checked with @freddy and the varieties are 25% each of:
Seyval Blanc
Muller Thurgau

While I can see why we didn’t list out four pretty little-known varieties in the tasting note, I do appreciate it would be helpful for those looking for more info! That said, in the meantime, we’re always happy to help so just ask Member Services if you ever want to know more about any of our wines. :smiley:


Many thanks @laura

When I started with wine Cabernet, Merlot, Chardonnay etc were also little-known. :slight_smile:


Ooh, that’s strange! My notes from the press tasting (which is where I tried this wine, and spoke to Freddy) say ‘Müller-Thurgau, Phoenix and Reichensteiner’ - I wonder if I mixed it up with another wine?! :thinking:
In any case, it’s good to know - it’s such a lovely summery wine! :heart_eyes:


Thanks @SteveSlatcher.

Interesting video. The only thing that has changed in the process is the short cut of gene testing to remove vines without the wanted genes.

I attended a presentation on grape-breeding at the Geneva Research Station* given by Bruce Reisch. Through DNA testing they identify varieties with specific attributes to use to breed.

Geneva’s priority is to produce vines that do well in the Finger Lakes and other cold climes of northern USA, thus I was surprised he mentioned using a Muscardine, a species that does well in the heat of Florida and southern USA.

Most successful of the Geneva varieties is probably Traminette (white) and I have also tasted some acceptable more recent red crosses.

*that’s Geneva at the top of Lake Seneca in New York States Finger Lakes


Maybe it was a different vintage?


Yes, perhaps - as I think Freddy does the blending, and the grapes/proportions may vary, I suppose.


Ah, so sorry about this! Seems there’s been some miscommunication with that tasting note - not sure how that happened but I’ll look into it. Double-checked and Freddy’s certain the four-grape blend I listed above is correct, so at least that settles it.
Huge apologies again for the error in the notes!


If there has been any error- it would be mine, @laura! The press tasting notes didn’t actually mention the grape varieties, but when me and Simon chatted to Freddy about the wine, I scribbled some notes - and those scribbled notes mention the three grapes I referred to before.

Perhaps Freddy talked about those in general terms, rather than specifically referring to the wine we were tasting. In any case - it’s good to know what the actual grapes are!! :smiley:



Burgundy is still a good 300 km further south, and with less unstable Atlantic-influenced conditions. And even champagne, where only sparkling wine is made, is 200 km.

Hope I’m wrong, but I doubt I’ll see an English wine that wows me in my lifetime. Even runaway climate change can only do so much :slight_smile:


Sounds like you made your mind up :wink:


Too much good Spanish, Italian, etc stuff about. And then one has to make sure the winemakers aren’t B********. :slight_smile:

Ready to eat my words, of course…


Sorry to sound pedantic but that’s not entirely correct , let’s not forget Les Riceys which includes Rosé de Ricey, Coteaux du Champenoise (red) and also of course sparkling Champagne :wink:!


Yeah, I know. But we don’t exactly drink those wines every day of the week, do we? :slight_smile:


When in Champagne and all …:wink::wink:

"Different" wine recommendations for the supermarket wine drinker

To let you know; we had the tasting titled Of Splice and Men (thanks @tom) last week

These were the wines we had in the order we tasted them

Weingut Müller-Catoir
Scheurebe 2017
VDP Haardt (Germany)
abv 13.0%
(Riesling x ? – 1916 Georg. Scheu)

Camel Valley
Bacchus 2016
PDO Cornwall (England)
abv 12.5%
([Sylvaner x Riesling] x Müller-Thurgau – 1933 Peter Morio)

Prince Stirbey
Novac 2015
Dealurile Olteniei G.I (Romania)
abv 13.5%
(Negru Virtos x Saperavi – 1987 Marculescu Mircea)

Louis Guntrum Weinkellerei
Dornfelder 2017
QbA Rheinhessen (Germany)
abv 12.5%
(Helfensteiner x Heroldrebe – 1956 August Herold)

Weingut Ewald Gruber
Red! Pepp
Blauer Zweigelt 2017
Qualitatswein Niederosterreich (Austria)
abv 12.5%
(Blaufrankisch x Saint-Laurent – 1922 Fritz Zweigelt)

Bodega Familia Deicas
Atlantico Sur
Marselan 2018
Garzan Vineyard, Maldonada (Uruguay)
abv 14%
(Cabernet Sauvignon x Grenache – 1961 Paul Truel)

The Society’s Exhibition (Kadette)
Pinotage 2016
WO Stellenbosch (South Africa)
abv 14%
(Pinot Noir x Cinsaut – 1924 A I Perold)

McManis Family Vineyards
Petite Sirah 2016
California (USA)
abv 13.5%
(Peloursin x Syrah – 186? Francois Durif)

All wines from TWS. First two white.

At the end I averaged the scores, and there was a clear favourite. Everyone loved the Petite Sirah, it’s just so yummy. Second was the Pinotage and third was the Scheurebe.

For myself, I was in a minority of one in finding a really strange chemical taste in the Marselan that reminded me of disinfectant. I had such high hopes as I have really enjoyed French Marselans, but as I say, everyone else enjoyed it.

The Bacchus scored low, I think a 2016 vintage - 3 years old - had lost the freshness and vitality I’ve enjoyed in other Bacchus wines.

The Scheurebe was a revelation, I was expecting not to like it but it was super, dry but not acidic, rounded and full of flavour, a great quaffer. A great party wine - except for the cost.

Apart from my lone disliking of the Marselan, all the wines were liked, it was only that some wines were liked more than others.

Many thanks to all those above who made suggestions and took part.


What a brilliant theme, and sounds like it was a fun evening :+1:


Not surprised about the Marselan. Two grapes that are kinda rubbish put together… :grin:

Interesting idea. I think my favourite crossing, though, is Manzoni Bianco. Pity hardly anyone grows it (though those who do are among the very best).

Scheurebe makes proper wine too.

Would be interesting to taste a cool climate Pinotage. To me it tastes nothing whatsoever like Pinot or Cinsault, but then of course that may well be the climate.


I’m afraid I can’t agree with you, @suiko. First, I didn’t criticise Marselan, I criticised this particular wine and I was in a minority of one. I think Marselan can make a good red wine, from the French examples I’ve had.

Secondly I don’t agree that either Cabernet Sauvignon or Grenache are ‘kinda rubbish’.

Lafite Rothschild, who are generally accepted to know something about wine, have planted Marselan in their Chinese vineyard and this year announced their first wine from that vineyard which is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Marselan.

I don’t know what Pinotages you’ve tasted but expecting them to taste like either Pinot or Cinsaut makes as much sense as expecting Chardonnay to taste like Pinot or Gouais Blanc.

As for cool climate Pinotage, there were some excellent examples from New Zealand’s South Island and are superb ones from Okanagen Valley in British Columbia. The best ones in South Africa come from cooler vineyards on hills, subject to ocean winds.