Fellow Wine Lovers,
If you don’t mind, a word in your shell-like….
What an earth has been going on? I leave you all in charge of the shop for one week and all hell breaks loose. I thought it was safe to pop down to Devon to learn how to put up umbrellas in horizontal gales whilst unpacking wetsuits filled with cold children onto carparks filled with thistles but no, clearly I was mistaken. Whilst I was gaining further parenting skills and willing the downing of the sun to be earlier each day, you were all up here, egging him on:
- Alex is away for a few days, so I was thinking about buying some posh kit to put on the shelf to see if he notices, could be a nice little earner
- That sounds like a great idea Wayne, why don’t you see how many you can get in whilst he’s not here, that‘ll teach him to go on holiday so often!
- I was thinking it should be Italian and Spanish because he’s so boring – if I were to order this Aussie stuff he’s bound to have a wobbler
- Do it, just do it – nothing he can say from Plymouth and there’s no phone reception or email west of Exeter
- I’m going to place the order now…
So I arrive back in the greenhouse on Monday morning and who is here to greet me? Only Feldmarschall von Fenner zu Fennberg , the 2012 Müller Thurgau made in the Sud Tirol – Alto Adige by Tiefenbrunner (£26.99) and probably the best expression of this grape variety you’ll find anywhere. Beside him, looking slightly nervous next to such military might, was Bruno Giacosa presenting his Roero Arneis 2014 (£21.99) about whom I do remember writing a tasting note that started with the word ‘WOW!’.
Next in line, standing to attention as they all were, as if on parade, was another new boy, Le Serre Nuove dell’ Ornellaia 2012 (£44.00) a generous and smooth super-tuscan from Bolgheri. I know Ornellaia, his father, well, of course, so was pleased to see him following in the family footsteps.
And finally, standing close together, were two proud chaps from Spain who I hadn’t seen in the shop for ages. Both from La Rioja Alta, it is a pleasure to welcome back Viña Arana Reserva 2006 (£22.99) and his elder sibling Gran Reserva 904 2005 (£35.00) both good, solid, trustworthy wines.
And I hear there is talk of a Chablis Grand Cru in the offing too, I should go away more often, perhaps the New World will get some attention!
Here Terry, have a word…
It also seems that he’s been mucking about with the TV whilst I’ve not been looking; certainly something very strange seems to be going on with the cricket. If only those kind and charming gents dressed in yellow, drinking wine from the bottle, that I sat next to on that Sunday at Lord’s could be found, I’d love to remind them of a couple of suggestions they made to the England team – seems to have worked!
Oh, and Arsenal beat Chelsea in the Community Cup – surely that would never happen?
We had a rare chance to pop out to dinner this week with our lovely, lovely lady wives. The intention was to visit Holy Smoke on Leopold Road, a new locale that has been well reviewed, but were sadly disappointed to discover they were fully booked, on a Tuesday night. Fabulous news for them, less so for us. Plan B arrived in the shape of Sri Lankan BYO Apollo Banana Leaf on Tooting High Street. This was delicious as ever and was helped us come to a number of crucial conclusions:
- German Riesling is delicious and, when its only 8%, extremely easy to drink
- Mas de Daumas Gassac Blanc and Frog’s Leap Zinfandel are superb matches to the spiciness of Sri Lankan cuisine
- Wayne has a capacity for mutton with a two chilli rating previously unshown but definitely worth utilising in some sort of eating competition
- My wife, in spite of months in India, still insists on drinking water when something is too spicy for her…
The world is my lobster
And it could be yours too… Wine School will give you all the skills required to do this and at £150 for 6 weeks and 60-odd wines, is a far better use of time and money than a mis-spent night down the Winchester Club. Just about half-full at the moment so don’t be backward about coming forward.
I’ve got a good idea, just you keep me near, I could be so good for you
Which is what all the wine sings to us each morning when we open up. However, we can’t keep all the wines near and we shouldn’t keep them all to ourselves, as that would no doubt not be so good for us, so as ever we’ll open a couple up this weekend, every one a go-er.
As it’s a white with the Wow factor, I think it would be appropriate to let you all enjoy the Bruno Giacosa Roero Arneis(£21.99) that I mentioned earlier, whilst the red will be Quinta da Falorca 2010 (£13.99) a delicious red from the Dâo in Portugal, one that we have enjoyed immensely in the past and which has just moved onto the 2010 vintage.
That’s about it from us – for those who like to guess who writes the email each week this should be an easy one (or is it?)
Stick it on the slate, Dave!