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- Mitch’s Musings
A lack of opposition. I watch the Conservative leadership debates with vested interest. One can always tell when the opposition to the Conservative Party is at its weakest - when they cannibalise themselves. Without a unifying force, they self-devour. They are such a broad church.
Since 1922 when the general election, which witnessed the collapse of the Conservative – Liberal coalition, and the ultimate demise of the liberal party never to return to office again, Labour became the second party.
These Liberal Conservative party lines blurred, and different economic, social, and eventually European policies sat on one side of the house, united against socialism. No wonder Labour’s major success historically came when their leader spun a new brand of Conservatism which appealed, for a time, and with long-term consequence to Middle England. The greatest debate on economic policy we have had for several years has recently come from the same party in their leadership debates. The opposition sit in irrelevance like Rose on winters night. With no pantomime villain, what have they to say? It is not healthy, or right.
In wine an opposition is required. Wine can appeal to different tastes and preference, which like politics, is the dream. A right to choose and share views, in wine is a pleasure. Unlike trends in today’s polarised politics and on social media however, views are not thrust aggressively by those who can hold them. Personally, I have no liking for new world wines, but do not force the old world upon those who do. That is my preference. I adore the history and journey of the old world. You can travel through France, and its history in a glass.
Summer months have brought a change of location for work for me and holiday pleasure for the family to our home in Northern Italy. It has enabled me to move forwards a collaboratively financing of a business with a Swiss investment house. Between us we are potentially investing £100m in the climate change space, and the commute is shorter. In Italy, Barolo dominates like Burgundy and Tuscan might like Bordeaux.
The issue with the Italians is the best wine is rarely exported. You need to go native, understand the landscape, culture, and as usual with Italy like Burgundy, the local village and history. With my neighbour, we drank brilliant Nebbiolo from the Valtellina valley discussed with my terrible Italian, along with politics and the dismal state of Italian football. Locally shot wild boar by my host accompanied, and the evening sun on the Italian alps set the vista.
The wine, A Dirupi 2017. It would rival any Barolo and is fraction of the price. I have also consumed it with smoked duck and mushroom which is a more traditional dish for Barolo, the trusted centre ground of Italian wine choice. I keep it in the Littondale cellars, and in their Italian counterpart, a must. I reflected, as the second bottle was opened, that for all the Westminster bubble and its noise in a monotone voice, when you listen to my neighbour discuss Italian politics, we do not have it that bad.
We have some clowns, but they work in a circus. I worry the current circus will regret killing one of their most successful clowns. I still do not know who will get my vote for the leadership, but the rare Italian smaller labels get my vote against the mainstream centre and in Italian wine. In life, and wine, you need competition. Salute.