Hamish is a true gent and everything you could want from a guide. His career experience in wine and his local experience in Bordeaux made our first visit one I will always remember. My wife and I are enthusiastic wine lovers, but we have unsophisticated palates. Hamish arranged three amazing stops for us along the Medoc, two second growth and a first growth vineyard. We aren't the best at planning in advance, and so we left him with only a little over 24 hours to lock in our stops. He came through as if he had planned for months, but I am sure it was difficult. I would advise you contact him a few weeks or a month ahead if you can, to ensure he can get you into all of the places you want. As we are novices, we were happy to go anywhere. I realize how lucky we are now to have seen and tasted what we did.
At each vineyard the staff were happy to see him and treated us both extremely well as a result. He complements the information from each vineyard nicely and ties the tour together with as much information as you want about the region, its history, the trade and the people involved. I feel like I had a month course in the wines of Bordeaux in just under 9 hours. We had a lovely breakfast on the road and a delicious lunch in one of his small haunts in the village of St. Julien. I am not sure we would have been able to find as quaint and lovely a spot on our own. I can't begin to go into everything I learned, but I am sure I was only the scraping the surface of what Hamish has to offer. We are now in St. Emilion, where Hamish also arranged some stops for us to visit on our own in our rental car.
I have had private tour guides in lots of places, but I have heretofore only learned of them by word-of-mouth. Frankly, I am surprised that we found this quality of guide on Tripadvisor. If you are interested in the best quality tour you can get and you don't mind paying a little more for a private guide, then go with Hamish. It's like like having a good friend in the Bordeaux wine trade to show you around. I cannot recommend him enough.
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