The incomparable Neil Perry needs no introduction. This is a man whose best expression is through the medium of cooking – which may explain the austerity of his answers to my Code38 questions – and which surely accounts for his generous provision of a recipe at the end of the interview.
Neil describes what he does as inspiring people “to adopt the Rockpool philosophy”. (Neil, we would love to know what that is!) He reckons the most exciting wine he has opened with his Code38 was a 1985 Sassicaia – “one of the great Super Tuscans from one of its great years – and it didn’t disappoint.” Anything from Barolo is what he is currently loving to drink. “I love the fact that it has such personality”, he says, “so like a great Burgundy.”
Favourite white wine he cites as the 1995 DRC Montrachet Grand Cru, and favourite red the 1991 Vega Sicilia Unico Reserva. And memorable wine experience? That would be “drinking 1961 Petrus, 1947 Cheval Blanc and 1928 Cos d’Estournel.”
It’s the balance of his Code38 wine knife that charms Neil most about it. To other Code38 members he would recommend they uncork a 2008 Rockford Basket Press Shiraz – ” beautiful smooth, rich, red fruits and a silky texture, perfect with a steak” – and thereby perfect with the following recipe for Aged Beef Ribs Barbecued with Anchovy Butter. The Rockford Basket Press Shiraz is available, he says, from quality bottle shops and restaurants.