RSJ's 30th anniversary: 1980-2010

2010 was a very special year for us as the RSJ Restaurant celebrated its 30th year. We held a number of special events through the year to mark our 30th birthday.

36th Year: 1980-2016

Another milestone with events happening during our 36th anniversary year.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Autumn 2009 dates for your diaries

Ursula getting to grips with pasta

Ursula’s Italian Sunday lunches: £30 a head
18th October
22nd November
Ursula with be announcing the themes for the lunches very shortly. As usual there will be the opportunity to learn and cook with Ursula preparing the lunch. Limited number of places available – 5 max Cost an additional £30 a head. As these are popular early booking is advised.

Saturday morning cookery lesson with Ursula Ferrigno:
17th October
Cookery lesson with Italian specialist, Ursula, followed by lunch. Places very limited. £85 a head.

The Coteaux du Layon

Wine tastings and dinner:

Monday 19th October - The varied vinous treasures of Anjou including Savennières and Coteaux du Layon.
Anjou has the most diverse and varied range of wines in the Loire ranging from steely, minerally Savennières to sumptuous Layons. Chenin Blanc is the star in its homeland as is Cabernet Franc and, occasionally, its sibling Cabernet Sauvignon. £50 a head

Monday 23rd November - 2008 vintage
A year on from a miraculous vintage how are the 2008 wines actually shaping up?

Plus previously announced:

Monday 21st September 2009: RSJ dinner party.

Details here or here.

To book call Nigel Wilkinson or Tom King on 020-7928 4554 or email

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Vincent Ogereau – our best wishes for his convalescence

Vincent Ogereau: vigneron and musician

We were very sorry to learn this afternoon that Vincent Ogereau (vigneron in Saint-Lamber-du-Lattay) was in hospital in May for an operation on a brain tumour. The very good news is that the tumour is not malignant and that it was not in a critical part of the brain. Apparently there is a very good team of surgeons in Angers and these days entry to the brain is via your nose. It is no longer necessary to cut open your head.

Vincent tells us that he is making a good recovery and hopes to be fully fit for the harvest, which looks at the moment likely to start around 15th September. This is excellent news as we have long admired Vincent's wines.

Our best wishes to Vincent for his convalescence.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Stéphane Cossais dies at 42

Stéphane Cossais in August 2008

Very sad news – we learnt last evening that Stéphane Cossais, the excellent Montlouis producer, died of a heart attack on Saturday. He was only 42. We had only just started listing his wines this year and were very impressed by their quality. With only a small production Stéphane concentrated on making dry whites of brilliant purity and precision.

Further details on Jim's Loire here.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Report on Summer Spectacular tasting & dinner: 20th July

Bernard Fouquet's wine was the star of the evening

Tom and Nigel report that almost all the wines showed well. Comments under each wine:

2008 Touraine Sauvignon, Domaine du Clos Roussely, Vincent Roussely
The Roussely Sauvignon was liked very much.

2004 ‘Pur Sang’ Pouilly-Fumé, Didier Dagueneau
Pur Sang was good but we felt it needed a bit longer in magnum

1995 Savennières Roche aux Moines, Mme Laroche
Savennières was rather typical of the Laroche style

1997 Saumur Blanc ‘Insolite’, Domaine des Roches Neuves, Thierry Germain
Insolite 97 showing well - well balanced and lovely maturing Chenin

Salmon ravioli with baby spinach & pea veloute


Reds all showing well including the 1982 Bourgueil Druet (in magnum) which was greatly admired and still had life left in it.

We also showed an extra red - 2001 Marginale, Saumur-Champigny, Domaine des Roches Neuves, Thierry Germain, which was quite tight on opening but developed well in the glass and worked well with the lamb.

1989 Chinon, Domaine de la Perrière, Christophe and Jean Baudry

2001 Chinon Vieilles Vignes, Philippe Alliet

1982 Bourgueil Pierre-Jacques Druet

Accompanied by:

Roast saddle of Suffolk lamb

Fondant potatoes, babycarrots

French beans, red wine jus

1990 Vouvray Moelleux, Domaine des Aubuisières ‘Cuvée Alexandre’, Bernard Fouquet
This 1990 Vouvray from Fouquet was simply stunning! Rich, beautifully balanced and drinking superbly.

Accompanied by:

Strathdon Blue Cheese

Lemon curd tart with Chegworth Valley mixed berries

Clotted cream

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Interview with Didier Barrouillet

Didier Barrouillet

We have long liked the wines of Catherine Roussel and Didier Barrouillet of the Clos Roche Blanche in the Cher Valley. Currently we have their 2008 Touraine Sauvignon (£27.95) on the restaurant list.

The Clos Roche Blanche has been organic for many years and Didier is particularly interested in biodiversity and how this provides checks and balances against pests and disease. Esca is a vine disease that attacks the roots and is now a serious problem with Sauvignon Blanc being particularly susceptible with many plants dying at around 20 years old.

Here on Bertrand Celce's Wine Terroirs site is a fascinating interview with Didier and how planting wild leeks may provide a cure.

Friday, July 17, 2009

20th July: ‘Summer Spectacular’ tasting

Wines to be tasted:

Nigel will be making his final selection over the weekend. However, these two are definite:

The late Didier Dagueneau in September 2007

2004 Pur Sang 2004, Pouilly-Fumé, Didier Dagueneau

Christophe Baudry@the Baudry-Dutour winery

1989 Domaine de la Perrière, Chinon, Jean and Christophe Baudry

Both wines are in magnum

The menu:

Salmon ravioli with baby spinach and pea velouté

Roast saddle of Suffolk lamb
Fondant potatoes, baby carrots, French beans
Red wine jus

Lemon curd tart with Chegworth Valley strawberries and clotted cream.