I’ve been a publisher, an adman, a brand consultant. For the last 15 years or so (thanks to a birthday present from my wife in the 1990s) I’ve been a wine man as well.

I’ve written a successful book on wine (The Wine Miscellany) that got good reviews from people who really do know what they are talking about such as Tim Atkin MW and has even made it into a French translation. I’ve consulted for wine companies. I’ve even done presentations on wine history in the UK and the US.

These days I’m out of full-time work and – as a sort of present to myself – have decided to go back to University as a mature student to do a Master’s on the history of champagne in the second half of the 19th century.

This blog has three chunks to it.

First is snippets from the research that I’m doing. Going through 19th century newspapers and records you come across some wonderful and bizarre ‘facts’ which deserve their moment of fame and a little bit of context.

Second, there are stories of the day. For example, my launch date, 4th August 1694 may have been the date on which Dom Perignon ‘discovered’ champagne. The fact that he did nothing of the kind hasn’t stopped fabulists celebrating the event for over 100 years. So I’ve done the same – sort of. In fact I have a wine story for every day of the year but I’m not going to inflict them all on any readers or followers.

Thirdly, there will be the occasional piece on being a (very mature) student. The University in question has good enough systems to know that I am a ‘continuer’ (since I first started a graduate degree in the 1970s) but not good enough to know that I haven’t simply taken a year or two out. It causes confusion. But, don’t worry, I won’t spend much time on this. There’s a lot more interesting – and fun – stuff to write about. Oh, and some occasional stuff in what I’ve been drinking. The practical side to my coursework you might say.

PS. There will be no references or scholarly stuff. If you’re interested in following up (or challenging) a post then email me on grahamharding169 AT gmail.com

One response to “About

  1. Graham it sounds a wonderful pursuit. Choosing the period of focus to be upto 1914 I find particularly interesting. I had a little look at this and by all accounts 1914 was one of the best years for grapes and somehow the French continued to harvest them in the Champagne region. The harvest continued under shelling and gun fire ‘in the wine that ripened where they fell’. They were almost as dedicated to their Champagne as you Graham! 🙂

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