About Me

My photo
Dublin, Ireland
Hi, I'm Dermot Nolan, and I became a Master of Wine (MW) in 1997, and resigned from the Institute of Masters of Wine in 2023 after being an MW for exactly 26 years. I opened a wine shop in Dún Laoghaire, Ireland, called The Wine Library, which closed in 2018, and this is my personal wine blog. I will do my utmost to be fair and responsible in my posts – please read my Who Pays article in re the ethics of wine trips and writing. I have worked in wine education, retail, and consultancy since 1990. I was a Director of the Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW) from 2008 to 2014 and was also a member of the Events Committee, founder of the Trips Committee, and member of the Governance Committee. Having had problems with potentially libellous comments from unidentifiable posters, I now require that if you post a comment, you must identify yourself properly or it won't be published. Please note that I do not review products or services on request so kindly don't ask. I value my independence and I believe my readers (few that they may be) do so also.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Paid to proselytise.... or planes, trains, more trains, a bus and even more trains and a car....

I am a lucky man - I've said it before and I'll say it again at some stage. I've just spent two great days teaching WSET Level 4 Diploma students in Belgium and Holland about Australia. Getting here was tricky but, after some wild train rides all across Holland I made to Antwerp Sunday evening (13th Nov. 2016) and the following morning had the first of two classes.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Rock’n’roll blues, or a rose by any other name…

The terminology of wine tasting is notoriously loose and ill-defined and this can cause problems when so-called experts (i.e. geeks like me) try to explain what a wine is like to a normal person (i.e. you!). What seems like a useful term within the trade can be confusing (or even off-putting) to a lot of consumers. One such term, which became fashionable about 12 years ago, is “minerality”. What is this “minerality” of which we speak? As it happens, even the great and good aren’t so sure…

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

My first published chapter...

It's not that much, really, just an outsider's view of a research project in which I had some involvement some years back. The book is called Applications of Ultrasound in the Beverage Industry and is almost ready for publication.The project relates to using ultrasound to try to hasten the ageing of wine. They also used my photo, shown here, for the cover!

Saturday, February 20, 2016

The apparent price of wine...

A few weeks ago John Wilson wrote a piece for the IrishTimes in relation to the price of wine in Ireland vis-à-vis other countries. In it, he stated that generally wine in Ireland is more expensive than other markets and he used Sweden, Canada, Australia, France, Denmark and the UK as comparators.
While it made decent reading I would take issue with a number of aspects – John failed to take into account economies of scale, different trade channels as well as not really looking at a simple question – is wine more or less expensive in Ireland now than ever before?