Volume 72: Macarthur family correspondence relating to wine, 1846-1900: No. 177
Bordeaux 27th March 1856
My Dear Sir,
When I had the pleasure of addressing you last I promised you another letter having only answered in part you favour of 20th Feby. I am almost afraid you may have thought me [indecipherable] particularly about the samples and your queries respecting Claret. The matter in order to be well done as far as I could do it required time and the steamers to London followed so close on each other that it was a matter of difficulty to get ready for them without being hurried. However now it is done & I proceed after offering you this apology for my silence to send you first a copy of your wine Invoice which I fancy I omitted in my last, and a note, of the box of samples to be delivered [indecipherable].for you at Mr Cooper's chequer yard Dowgate hill.
What you state in your letter respecting the different growths is perfectly correct, and the selections if made by a reasonable person from a good vintage (this is most essential) of the 3d, 4th, 5th Bourgeois is sure to answer and a great saving is certain to occur. But the choice of the vintage and the growth is the great thing and few unprofessionals are able to do it.
I think you will yourself find in the selection sent you of 1851, which is a very good vintage having many good qualities, though not equal to 1844, or 1848. [making?] allowances for their freshness, the proof of your [indecipherable]. Still I doubt you being able to convey to such friends of yours in London, with whom you intend to taste these samples your convictions in a sufficient degree, and as they must in the end from the want of experience, & reflection on the matter take things upon trust; they ultimately may prepare you some disappointment. I hope you will not think me presumptuous in this presuming the further observations I have to make by such preliminary matter; but feel bound at the risk of being at first misunderstood to state these observations to you because you wished to have these samples has been prompted by the very kind feeling which animates you towards my [indecipherable]. of benefits towards myself and in consequence of which & of your confidence