Fellow Wine Lovers,
Can you believe that in a month’s time it’ll all be over.
Right now, Wayne will be sitting in his matching Christmas Cardigan and Cravat Combo, lighting his Christmas cigar and embarking on his second glass of port, whilst his poor wife labours over the Brussels sprouts and turkey, again. Alex, on the other hand will be knee deep in rage and wrapping paper, desperately trying to wrap up presents that are destined to be unwrapped again five minutes later and wondering to himself, a) why hasn’t he done this earlier; b) why doesn’t he ever buy regular shaped gifts without sharp edges; and c) will anyone notice if he opens that bottle of champagne, NOW!
Yep, only 30 sleeps to go, folks and today is the official start of the silly season. Black Friday, blackeye day, potentially, has arrived and with it a host of junk mail and once in a lifetime deals. All week our computers have been running slower, due to the amount of spam offers we are receiving from AVG, who provide our antivirus stuff and should frankly know better. Sticking a big banner across the bottom quarter of my screen is not going to make me suddenly upgrade Mr AVG, it’s more likely to make a McAfee of me! Great Western Railway, lastminute, Your Golf Travel, Wiggle, Virgin Trains East Coast, Costco, London Duathlon, Chemist Direct, Golf Deals Group, 3 different golf clubs south of London (one of which I’ve never played!), South Devon Chilli Farm, Carphone Warehouse – all of these sent me emails yesterday offering some sort of Black Friday deal. However, all it really did was to confirm what I already feared – if you examine my purchasing history over the last year, it is pedestrian to say the least – golf, trainspotting and some glucosamine – next year I want to receive offers from skydiving and safari companies, from Champagne houses and from sunseeker.com!
Back in the real world for now, and away from the internet, we’ve had a pretty productive week. Tuesday saw Alex putting his tooth enamel to the test as he did some more judging at the International Wine Challenge – lots of young, new world wines apparently, and some from Turkey too. Then, on Wednesday, we had our first ever spirits tasting – a Whisky tasting in fact, with big Ed Cotton from Gordon & MacPhail. It was brilliant. What was threatening to be a raucous evening filled with singing and subversion was in fact really quite studious and engaged – clearly Ed has the sufficient gravitas that we lack!
We tasted the following all of which were showing brilliantly –
Speymalt from Macallan 2006 – £37.99
Connoisseurs Choice Arran 2006 – £38.99
Connoisseurs Choice Strathmill 2002 – £42.99
Connoisseurs Choice Caol Ila 2003 – £45.99
Ardmore 1996 – £72.99
The Arran and Strathmill were deliciously soft and supple and almost aperitif-y in style whilst the Ardmore and Caol Ila showed far more structure and power. And the Macallan – that just did what Macallan always does so well! We still have open bottles of Speymalt, Arran, Strathmill and a drop of Caol Ila should you wish to pop by and have a taste – funnily enough the Ardmore (the most expensive) got finished on the night!
If you don’t eat your meat, you can’t have any pudding! How can you have any pudding if you don’t eat your meat!
I know, I know, we don’t need no education etc etc, but, should you decide to buck this trend, we have a half-filled Wine School taking place in the early part of next year. We can promise lots of wine and no dark sarcasm in the classroom. Full details are attached but, for those unable to open attachments, the most important details are that it starts on Wednesday 25th January through to Wednesday 8th March and costs £150 per person. Christmas gift, perhaps?
Rully & Roero
Sadly, this is not the name of the new winebar opening in place of Bar Estella, the main reason for this being that Estella is still there, staring emptily into the street, yearning for some TLC. No, in fact, Rully and Roero are the names of the two wines we are tasting this weekend.
We’ve chosen these two because they appeal to our sense of contrariness. The Roero is a white wine made by a man, Bruno Giacosa, far more famous for his red wines, particularly his stunning Barbaresco’s and Barolo’s. The Rully is a red wine from a part of Burgundy often more associated with white wines – see what we did there?
Bruno Giacosa Roero Arneis 2015 – £21.99
Celine et Vincent Dureuil Rully 1er Cru ‘Champs Cloux’ 2013 – £25.99
Come in and taste them at your leisure although if you want a leisurely taste I suggest you avoid late afternoon – Christ the King is lighting up its Christmas tree and carols will be sung at 4.15pm tomorrow so it will be quite busy round here at that time!
Another week with no mention of sport – where’s Alex gone?