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Académie du Vin Library Publisher Simon McMurtrie and his wife Emma present Michael Broadbent with the first advanced copy of the Commemorative Edition of Michael’s book Wine Tasting at his flat in London.

“It’s hard to find the words to express the absolute joy on Michael’s face as Emma and I visited him and his partner Valerie this evening to present him with the very first copy of the Commemorative Edition of Wine Tasting. He came alive and talked in an animated fashion throughout the time we were together.

I read him extracts from the words that Hugh, Jancis, Steven and the much missed Gerard Basset had written about him and about Wine Tasting. He was glowing.

He was very pleased about Ian Harris’ preface. The WSET means so much to him.

He loved what Fritz had said from US perspective and what Paul Bowker described from his days at Christie’s with Michael as teacher.

He adored the pieces that Jonathan had written about him as musician and Charles about him as artist.  Music and art are so important to him and we spent time viewing his Charles Keane pictures together.

And he had tears in his eyes as I read extracts from the words that Bollew and his granddaughter Leaf had written about her precious ’Bumpa’.  He’s so proud of Bollew and Emma and of all of the children that each of them has produced!

He described effortlessly how the original Wine Tasting text had been written in the garden of a hotel on Sark in the early sixties. He recalled the moment as if it was yesterday.  He described how the words had just flowed unlike other books that he had written “as it was all so clear in my mind what needed to be said”.

And he reminded us that even today, Wine Tasting could enhance “the pleasure of tasting wine by knowing a little more and thus increasing its enjoyment”.

Michael can’t wait until the official launch event on 30th April and was keen to know what steps we were putting in place to ensure that people understood that Wine Tasting really is essential reading for any wine enthusiast or student, wherever they live in the world.

As he pointed out to Emma and me (over his third glass of Pol Roger!), there couldn’t be a better book with which to kick off the new Academie du Vin Library.” Simon McMurtrie