Further to his bicycle accident, British wine writer Steven Spurrier would like to thank everyone who has sent him cards and best wishes and reports: "I'm back all in one piece, taking it easy for the next couple of months, but looking forward to wearing the fine silver helmet that Decanter sent me once I'm back on the bike!
Spurrier is recuperating at the family farm in Dorset and said last Friday, "The key thing is Bride Valley Brut and the Boisset et Cie boys, including vineplanters this time around, are arriving for their third visit in about an hour. They have asked us to have digging machinery on hand to cut swathes out of the slopes in front of their very eyes. If it all goes ahead - they plan to plant 12 hectares at 5,000 vines per hectare in the spring out of a possible 30 on Bella's farm and they hope to rent as much across the Bride Valley to get to a total production of 400,000+ bottles. The barns that are in the lower centre of the farm, ie surrounded by vines if it goes ahead, they say are perfect for a winery. The first bottles commercialised will be in 2014, 60 years since I joined the wine trade, another reason (I hope) for a celebration."
Sarah Kemp, publisher of Decanter, has also given her long-standing columnist Michael Broadbent MW, another keen cyclist, a special Decanter helmet.
Steven reckons that it was a Decanter reader who recognised him as he lay unconscious outside the Victoria & Albert museum after having been knocked off his bike at the beginning of last month.
I also saw Tim Johnston (ex Willi's Wine Bar now Juveniles in Paris) recently and am able to report that he is recovering very well from his recent stroke. He's going in to Juveniles three lunchtimes a week, finding that a little tiring, unsurprisingly, but making formidable progress.