In 1639, a 20-year-old from a small village in North England, with the help of his two friends, became the first person to accurately predict the Transit of Venus – one of the rarest events in astronomy. This feat was no less audacious because it flew in the face of the predictions of most famous astronomer of the time (Kepler), in a period where witchcraft and magic were still widely held beliefs.
These men were of modest but independent circumstances and completely autonomous in their research.
In this single prediction they arguably paved the way for Newton’s discoveries, which revolutionised man’s understanding of the solar system. Imagine that!
Some of the greatest discoveries throughout history have been made by those bold enough to challenge conventions and question the status quo. Many of these pioneers weren’t professionals paid to find the next big thing, or those pursuing fame and fortune, they were the ones who did it for the love of it; to satisfy their own personal curiosity and passion. Armed with freedom, ambition and enthusiasm, they looked for the undiscovered in places and ways that others before them hadn’t.
This philosophy of constant questioning and self-directed learning is well documented amongst some of the most innovative and visionary minds the world has seen: from Sophocles and Leonardo Da Vinci to Steve Jobs.
Apparently all the great discoveries have now been made, but that doesn’t mean we should shy away from challenging what is and looking at ways to reinterpret and reimagine our world for the better – even in our own small corner.
Wine is my ‘small corner’ and I know there is potential to affect big improvements through small, … Read more >
How I relish a glass of wine at the end of a busy day.
If you’re anything like me, it begins as a sweet, shapeless sense of anticipation at the margins of the mind. By the time I … Read more >
One of the questions I’m asked most in my travels is ‘what’s new in wine?’
For many years I would rattle off improvements in active dry yeasts, or bottle closures, and watch as eyes glazed over. Sure there … Read more >
It’s been a while since I posted: A delicious, lingering stretch free from long-haul travel and it’s accompanying physical and mental fatigue. A blissful down-gearing dedicated to family and friends, domestic chores and beach swims at dusk. Ah, … Read more >
Recently I was privileged to be part of the team that selected the Fine Wines of New Zealand – a new initiative, sponsored by Air NZ, to bring recognition to New Zealand’s most prestigious wines. It was both … Read more >
Outside of Spain there seems to be two main camps when it comes to sherry: those who have been scarred by an early life experience of overly sweet alcohol from Grandma’s tumbler, and those who have never heard … Read more >
You might have seen or read about The Marshmallow Test – where 3 and 4 year olds are given the choice of eating one marshmallow immediately or waiting for 15 minutes for 2 marshmallows (apparently it’s supposed to … Read more >
In 2007 I got bitten by the saké bug and ended up a samurai. To put samurai into context: I’m not referring to the noble warriors of medieval Japan, rather an esteemed title given by the Japan Saké … Read more >
A few weeks ago I was privileged to be asked to speak on wine and art at a soirée hosted by one of the most dynamic patrons of the New Zealand art world. It was a fascinating topic … Read more >