Volume 72: Macarthur family correspondence relating to wine, 1846-1900: No. 190
promises. At such peoples' houses as Carbonell & Co; Paris & Co. Maxwell & Keys; Tanqueray & Co & several others whom I could name, this could not occur, as they have system & conduct their business on the best principles but they are exceptions, yes they say to us we buy so much Claret & Sauterne from you that you aught not to compete with us in the home market. I am now at your order for a box of samples of white wine and think in scientific point of view, & ultimately that you may judge what such wines as sauterne when it is genuine can be. If you have time later & after your journeys, if you will drop me a line I could understand with Mons Bouchereau to whom you could write & I would send you an assortment of Yquems, [indecipherable]
Duvigneau, Latour Blanche & [indecipherable] send you Carbonieux of one 2 or three vintages, all this in small bottles 1/3 of a quart each would I think enable you to judge, beyond the sea how such wines taste. There is an immense difference between tasting wines here or even in Paris, and tasting wines in London, Edinburgh or [indecipherable] after they have under gone comparatively a great ordeal either in cask or bottle when they have crossed the water. You need not mind the trouble or expense to us, as I will gladly and with much less expense & trouble you imagine have it done & done well.
You must have been surprised indeed with your reminiscences of old England to have tasted the Claret which is drunk at some of the best tables. It is true, that much of this difference arises from fashion having entirely changed. You will find in te Elegant extract somewhere a letter of Lord Chesterfield written when he was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland and then, not a gentlemen had money sufficient to stand the expense of Claret, it was not so bad in 1812, but still Claret & wine generally engrossed the attention of all dinner givers & diner's out, The peace & intercourse with Paris and the rest of France have changed all that & it is not usual to take care of ones wine as