Winding down for summer

July 19th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Well, this week has been a lot less about tennis and cricket than last week. Fear not, we’ve gainfully employed ourselves with stocking up the shelves, pushing the broom round the shop followed by a Cheese & Wine tasting. Oh, and the Tour de France, which has been really rather thrilling so far, the first time since forever that the first twelve stages have rewarded us with twelve different winners.

But of course the appearance of the Tour de France really is just an outlying signal, warning of an impending disappearance. The world was in black and white, Wayne was at school and the end of term was definitely signalled when French lessons evolved into discussions as to who was following the Tour de France. Bernard Hinault was the man then, winning in 1978, 1979, 1981 and 1982. Indeed his final victory in 1985 marked the last French winner of the race.

So, end of term is rearing its head, with Prosecco parties in the park, letters from the headmaster and thoughts of ice-cream.  This weekend sees an abundance of festivals too, with George Ezra, Lana Del Ray and Snow Patrol at Latitude, whilst Kraftwerk, New Order and Hot Chip do the business at Blue Dot.

So, are you staying local or going somewhere nice? Reading the press, it doesn’t sound like you’ve booked with Thomas Cook, so perhaps the A303 is going to be a tad busy at points. Pop in and take a case of rosé and bubbly with you, it’s going to be a great summer.

Elsewhere in the world,  Facebook may be about to be fined $5billion for privacy violations with regard to Cambridge Analytica antics, whilst half the world gives free access to their photos for a Russian app to age them twenty years. Face recognition technology in free development!

Otherwise, just when you thought he could go no lower, Trumpolina finds a longer stick to scrape the real depths of the barrel, turning to outright racism at a rally in Carolina. Whilst on the subject of incompetent fools, Corbyn and May tried to out-racist each other with institutionalised anti-Semitism and Islamophobia taunts. 

May is, of course, about to be replaced by another incompetent fool, which looks likely to be Boris who strangely chose to wave a kipper about at the final hustings. Urban Dictionary: “to be done or stiched up like a kipper, clearly means to be duped or tricked by false information that was there for all to see”

On the plus side, we’ve been informed that our water will be clean and the planes will still be flying in the event of a no deal Brexit!

In the realm of the ‘drinks and drinking’ media it feels like some of the grown-ups have gone on holiday and the student interns are running amok.

Pernod Ricard are introducing a “premium alcohol-free dark spirit” which will have sweet vanilla, spices and oak cask wood flavours, retailing at around £25.  A £25 bottle of rum includes an £8.05 donation to the exchequer in the form of duty, plus the VAT of about £4. This new alcohol-free drink at £25, just the £4 of VAT. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to see some alternatives to a glass of Highland Spring for those who prefer not to drink, but it just seems some of our trade are starting to take the margin-mickey. Twenty five quid seems a lot of cash for flavoured water to put in your ginger ale!

Wine School  

We’ve sold over half the spaces now, so if you’re thinking about joining the fun do give us a shout.

Six Week Wine School –

Wednesday 2nd October – Wednesday 13th November (half term 23rd October) – £150 per person

Future Tastings


Thursday 12th September at 8pm – £20

Thursday 10th October at 8pm – £20

Thursday 7th November at 8pm – £20

Thursday 28th November – Cheese & Wine’s Greatest Hits for 2019 at 8pm – £20

If Cheese & Wine is not your thing we also have these…

Thursday 17th October Domaine Treloar at 8pm- £20

Thursday 5th December Champagne & Fizz at 8pm – £30 (Half Sold!)

What Are We Tasting This Weekend?

We’re going to suggest a glass or two of Fleurie Cuvée Sept 2018 (£14.99) in the red corner, possibly lightly chilled as next week looks likely to be a scorcher.

Sporting the white golf shirt with an open collar will be Domaine Landrat-Guyollot Pouilly Fumé ‘La Rambarde’ (£20.99), it may have nothing to do with Northern Irish Golf but it’s a real winner.

That’s it from us this week, be nice to someone, help a stranger and come and taste some wine!

Wine: more or less?

July 12th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

20% of UK adults now do not drink alcohol and of those that still do, 47% have cut back their consumption.

Now here’s a question for you – how many of you have ever taken part in a survey?  Or perhaps more correctly, how many of you have taken part in a survey that hasn’t just disappeared into the miasma of data harvesting but has actually been used for a ‘greater’ good, where you can actually see the fruits of your labours and say, ’yes, I’m one of the 47% who has cut back, I remember that question well!’. 

For me, I think the closest I ever get to one is when a local newspaper makes me answer ‘one simple question’ in order to gain access to an article online.  Or when one of our suppliers wants to find out if we’re happy with their offering via survey monkey.  Or when Amazon is feeling overly needy.  Never have I been asked by Euromonitor, MORI or Mintel for my august opinion.  Clearly they already know my thoughts.

Anyway, the reason I ask is because I often wonder who is actually being door-knocked by the man from the market research company?  Is there a hardcore of form fillers out there who make a small income being professional vox pop providers?  Are the surveys only carried out mid-afternoon on a Tuesday when a lot of people are at work?  If so, when they ask the question ‘do you watch the BBC soap Doctors?’ affirmative answers dwarf negative and  the front page of The Mirror the next day informs us that more than 90% of the British public watch afternoon soaps.  Clearly not true.

If you are a serial survey subscriber then do come and talk to us – we’d love to hear your secrets! 

End of impromptu market research bit.

In the world outside of wine, because by all accounts there is one, life meanders on.  Trump slags off a man he has never met and then proceeds to slag off the PM too whilst Boris somehow gets blamed for the aforementioned civil servant’s resignation.  Confused?  Don’t worry; there’ll be a new outrage along shortly.

In the other world outside of wine, we are facing Blue Tuesday next week.  Having had all available devices streaming the cricket, the tennis and the Tour de France all this week, the 16th July will find us bereft – Wimbledon and the World Cup will have wrapped up on Sunday and the cyclists are taking a rest day on Tuesday so, if you want great, undistracted customer service, that’s the day to choose – we’ll both be here, eager and attentive!

However, within the wine world, we hear of the latest easy way to spend 30,000 euros, with a distinct whiff of the emperor’s new clothes.  A Bordeaux producer, Liber Pater, has announced that their 2015 vintage consists of just 550 bottles and each of these will leave you pocket change from £27,000.  I do wonder if the vineyard has taken the Mintel report a little bit too seriously when it confirmed that whilst the 47% have cut back, they are now spending more per bottle – seeking quality over quantity – but it’s still a bit of a leap for most of us pricewise! 

And the wine?  Well, we know nothing about it really – it’s made using local Castets, Tarney-Coulant and Pardotte grapes which are not the first names one reels off in a Bordeaux grape list.  Oh and they are intensively planted, at almost double the density per hectare than normally allowed in the region and then vinified in clay amphora, with no use of oak.  To the uneducated, and I very much include myself in this realm, this actually sounds like an effective recipe for cutting costs.  Use unfashionable grapes, plant them shoulder to shoulder to increase potential yields and then save money by avoiding buying expensive, hand-made oak barriques.  Oh and it can’t be labelled Bordeaux as a consequence of all this so is merely a Vin de France… next time I moan about the increasing cost of Sassicaia and other Super-Tuscans I’ll remember to wind my neck in!

Local news

And by local, we mean really local, 126 Arthur Road local.

As discussed last week, we have various dates for your diary well worth noting and booking before you abandon ship for the summer hols.

Places are starting to fill up on the next Wine School, so if you’re thinking about joining the fun, do give us a shout.

Wednesday 2nd October – Wednesday 13th November (half term 23rd October) – £150 per person

If however you can’t commit to a six week course, here is a brief overview of what is going on over the next few months, in the evenings when the summer is over and watching boxsets just feels like brain atrophy…

Thursday 12th September at 8pm – WINE & CHEESE TASTING – £20

Thursday 10th October at 8pm – WINE & CHEESE TASTING – £20

Thursday 17th October at 8pm –


Jonathan and Rachel Treloar own and run this small, highly-regarded vineyard and winery in the Roussillon, France’s most exciting wine region.

Thursday 7th November at 8pm – WINE & CHEESE TASTING – £20

Thursday 28th November at 8pm – WINE & CHEESE TASTING – £20

The greatest hits from all the tastings over 2019, just in time for Christmas!

Thursday 5th December at 8pm – CHRISTMAS BUBBLES TASTING – £30

Our annual journey through the world of fizz and Champagne – will the same people turn up this year we wonder!?!?

Plenty to choose from there – drop us a line if any of them tantalise!

This weekend

After many weeks of waiting we finally have Cretan wine back in stock and more than last time.  Not content with just having the delicious Assyrtiko we now also have a red, Kotsifali and a small quantity of a wine called Dafni, more on that another time.

So, as is our wont, we will be opening the Assyrtiko and the Kotsifali tonight and tomorrow.

The Assyrtiko has a definite floral character, refreshing minerality and chalky texture that makes it a truly delicious foil to lightly fried white fish or seafood whilst the Kotsifali is indisputably a classic of the vineyard of Crete. Spices and red fruits with an elegant mouthfeel and a piquant aftertaste make it a deliciously fresh drop, not too weighty and seriously good with lamb kleftiko or a bit of fried cheese.

Lyrarakis Vóila Assyrtiko 2018 – £14.49

Lyrarakis Kotsifali 2018 – £12.50

That’s it from us for now – come and taste some Crete sunshine in a bottle and sign up for a tasting or two whilst you’re here.  We’ll leave you with one final thought – if 47% of us have cut back, is it not possible that 53% of us are now pulling more corks than ever?

I’ll drink to that! ed

Sunshine and Strawberries

July 5th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

We’re not sure if it’s the sunshine, an overdose of strawberries, or the impending school holidays but the world seems to have gone mad.

First up, we’ll point out that Chelsea have a new manager. They haven’t gone for a high flying winner of everything but for a club legend in Frank Lampard. His relative inexperience at managerial level, Derby County not making promotion, prompted quite a chat amongst ourselves here at Park Vintners Towers. We wondered if Chelsea had filled a managerial post, or just become the first club to enter the Post Managerial era. Given that there’s little to be done to change the team following their past transgressions, we can’t help but wonder if Frankie is just there to be cheerful and full of stories for the press conferences.

Secondly, this Tory leadership contest seems to be taking some bizarre twists and turns as we get ever nearer. BoJo seems still to be hiding from journalists at every opportunity, whilst threatening to remove the sugar tax. Meanwhile, JeHun is happy to talk to anyone who looks in his direction and wants to bring back fox-hunting.  Both of them have promised so many tax cuts and spending rises that John McDonnell’s spending plans seem almost grown up.

Talking of grown-ups, the MEP’s of the Brexit party proved that they were anything but; turning their backs during the EU anthem, disrespecting the young musicians performing it, also disrespecting all the people who voted by behaving like naughty schoolchildren and, for historians, drawing nasty parallels with an incident in the Reichstag in 1930. What on earth has happened to integrity?

Commiserations to the Lionesses, a valiant effort and certainly this commentator enjoyed watching. Commiserations to the Kiwis, no scratch that, well played England, onwards and upwards World Cup Cricket semi-finals beckon! I also say that the World Cup Rugby training squad was announced today, seems a bit of attention seeking by the big lads, jealous of the attention the cricketers are getting.

On the local tennis tournament front Harriet Dart has set herself up nicely for a run around on the grass with World No.1 Ashleigh Barty, whilst Nick Kyrgios was spotted out for a pint or two in the Dog & Fox this week. At this stage we’re unsure if it was a quick pint, or if he was out out. Anybody in Hemingways this week see him?

Anyway, proper sport starts on Saturday the Tour de France. Stage one being a jaunt around Brussels through the town where Eddy Merckx grew up, celebrating the 50th anniversary of his first Tour de France win.

Who will win this year? Dunno, if I’m honest. Certainly not Froome or Dumoulin, unlikely Quintana who’s still looking for an opportunity to attack from last year. Geraint Thomas is certainly an option, but I wonder if Roman Bardet maybe worth a penny each way at 22/1 alongside a penny each way with Adam Yates at 12/1. The bookies certainly have Egan Bernal seems to be the bookies pick, even if Richie Porte thinks G is favourite.

Wine School  

Places are starting to fill up now, so if you’re thinking about joining the fun do give us a shout.

Six Week Wine School –

Wednesday 2nd October – Wednesday 13th November (half term 23rd October) – £150 per person

Future Tastings

As we’re getting along to the end of the season, with just a couple of places left for Thursday 18th July,we thought it expedient to remind you of the dates for Autumn. Some are already selling through.

Thursday 12th September at 8pm – £20

Thursday 10th October at 8pm – £20

Thursday 7th November at 8pm – £20

Thursday 28th November – Cheese & Wine’s Greatest Hits for 2019 at 8pm – £20

If Cheese & Wine is not your thing we also have these…

Thursday 17th October Domaine Treloar at 8pm- £20

Thursday 5th December Champagne & Fizz at 8pm – £30

Tasting This Weekend

With the Tour de France starting we had to go French this week. Add to that the warmth of the sun on our faces, a definite blue hue in the sky and the white jersey will be…

Domaine de la Combe Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Tradition 2017 – £11.39

Found in the village of Saint-Fiâcre, which lies nestled in the cradle of the Muscadet appellation, between the two rivers of Sèvre and Maine.  The slopes of these river valleys give the vines a unique exposure and lead to Saint-Fiâcre being considered one of the best sites. Wines are made from vines first planted in 1950’s – a rarity in the area as most are dug up after 40 years – with the latest planted in 2016.  After working in vineyards across the world, Pierre-Henri Gadais returned in 2016 to take over the Domaine from his father Christophe, to whom the previous owner – the local legend Nelly Marzelleau- had passed on the estate in 2009.

Charging up the Tourmalet in the boot of the Commissars red car will be Le Ciel Vide 2015 (£12.49) Named after a Bruce Springsteen song “Empty Sky” which, for us expressed most clearly the memories of September 11th. This unoaked red is made from Syrah and Grenache.”  The tasters at the recent Domaine Treloar tasting called this the most complex 12 quid wine they’d had, and ‘a real no-brainer’.

Lastly, police in London last week seized a staggering 461 cars for driving without insurance, that’s a June total of 1886! Let’s be careful out there!

Cheers s

Glastonbury, G20 and Question of Sport

June 28th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

A question posed yesterday by one of my oldest friends (and I mean that both in terms of age and length of service) is one that has been confounding the greatest minds since the dawn of time: ‘So, why can’t English top level sportsmen perform under pressure?’ 

In case there was any doubt as to what he was referring to, I believe the pasting the England cricket team received on Tuesday was probably top of his list.  Comments such as ‘crumpling under the weight of expectation’, ‘putting ourselves under unnecessary pressure’ and ‘not being as good as we thought we were’ were all good suggestions for our failure to achieve.  The suggestion that we could try cheating was met with stiff opposition and it was crudely pointed out that we’d probably bottle that too.  The observation that 5 of the World Cup squad were born outside of England was merely used as an example as to how infectious the English condition can be – imagine how different life wold be if Ben Stokes had stayed in NZ?

So we need a win on Sunday, against the minnows that call themselves India followed by another wine against the land of Mr Stokes’s birth.  Easy, two form teams gearing up for the final four – what could go wrong?  Paul, our correspondent from Lords on Tuesday, was keen to reiterate to us in his report that England were ‘utterly pants’ that day; so, providing we avoid being pants, everything should be hunky dory!

Keen to avoid any work/cricket/lengthy sporting discourse, Wayne spent the first chunk of this week mingling and networking in Tuscany.  It was the AGM of the small buying group that we are members of and, this year, it was being hosted by one of the Argentine wine producers.  Whilst keen to travel to Mendoza, the ‘fly on Monday, return on Wednesday’ nature of the trip made it more sensible for the winery to decamp to Europe.  The irony of drinking Malbec in the Italian sunshine whilst enjoying the asado was not lost on him. 

However, the absence of any Italian wine at all did feel a little bit like an opportunity missed.  Apart from that, I’m told that he has seen things that he will never be able to unsee and the ‘what goes on tour stays there’ line has been used more than once.  Suffice to say, any winery that has different cigar matches for their wines is definitely not one for the fainthearted.  Apparently we need to ask him about ‘the somersaults’…?

But he was back in time for our tasting last night.  We had the pleasure of hosting Rachel from Domaine Treloar last night, or perhaps more accurately we provided a location for Rachel to host her fabulous wines.  I think it would be fair to say that it was a brilliant evening and the wines were singing.  The great news now is that Rachel will be back to do it all again on Thursday 17th October at 8pm – tickets are £20 but don’t dally, I suspect some of the guests from last night might sign up to do it all over again!

Meanwhile, our crusty friends have gone down to Glastonbury to re-discover themselves.  Admittedly the crusty appellation is probably no longer appropriate as they now all have posh jobs in defence and science but, back in the day, they were definitely fence climbing, friends of Swampy and New Model Army.  Anyway, back in 1989 the Pyramid headliners were Suzanne Vega, Elvis Costello and Fela Kuti; 1999 brought us R.E.M., Manic Street Preachers and Skunk Anansie; 2009 was the turn of Neil Young, Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band and Blur and now, in 2019 we have ‘the’ Stormzy, The Killers and The Cure.  Wayne wants to go back to 1989 and I quite fancy 2009 – what’s your vote?

Wherever this weekend happens to find you sheltering it will definitely be from the sun we are told, Saturday being sun day and Sunday being cloud and sun day.  Both days will, however, be Scorchio! (Fast Show 1994-1997, just in case you weren’t feeling old enough already) and as a result we’ll be opening some cooling refreshers tonight and tomorrow.

Dressed in cooling white linen we have the gently charming Château Mercian Yamanashi Koshu Sur Lie 2017 – £17.50.

With a winemaking history dating back to 1877 Chateau Mercian is now Japan’s leading winery although we accept that Japan is not an enormous wine producer, its annual 22 million bottles is less than Moet & Chandon’s annual sales.  Koshu is Japan’s very own grape variety, having been grown there for around a thousand years although DNA research at UC Davies has determined it to be a descendant of Europe’s vitis vinifera vine species.  We found this to be light and fresh, a little floral and with a lovely dry finish.  Excellent with some sashimi, or a seafood paella but just fabulous with some pan-fried mackerel in the sunshine!

For the redder amongst us we will be toasting the weather with a glass of chilled Rechamante 2016 – £14.99.

Hailing from Orense, in Galicia, this is a cracking red.  Made mainly from Mencía Grape variety, it is light, fresh and fruity.  The fruits are a mixture of red and dark fruits to this taster but there is no doubting its juiciness.  Dangerously easy to drink, only 12%, and bound to be a tasty partner to whatever you happen to be cooking this weekend.

That’s about it from us for this week – I’ve attached details of the upcoming tastings and also the details of the Wine School that starts again in October – have a read, see if you fancy any of them, drop us a line – easy.

Oh and the solution, perhaps, to the ‘why can’t English top level sportsmen perform under pressure?’ conundrum.  Stop watching.  Watch the women instead.  3-0 to England last night in the World Cup quarter finals and a penalty saved.  If you get the chance to see the third goal on highlights then it’s definitely worth a watch.

Stay fresh!

Be excellent to each other!

June 21st, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

So, we started the week with a debate on the BBC that was arguably no debate at all. It was quite possibly some of the worst TV I have watched, with five clueless buffoons all talking over each other and not answering any of the questions put to them by the viewers. Some wags suggesting that it was like an ancient boy band reunion of ‘Fake That’ and ‘Worst Life’ amused this commentator.

Anyway, the target audience seemed to enjoy it but I’m not sure that was you or I, dear reader. The next day they had a secret ballot and kicked out the only member who had an idea. The secret polling then kicked out the only chap who had no hair – seems harsh but that’s politics!

Talk then returned to getting back at the patronising one with spectacles for some previous stitch up. Amber gambler had warned against it in the press but, as she was supporting the follicly challenged chap, nobody listened. Votes were lent to the Foreign Secretary, who can’t remember the nationality of his long-suffering wife, and that was sufficient to exclude the patronising chap.

Which brings us to where we are now. Fake That’s five members have been whittled down to just two, we’ll call them ‘The Reclaimers’ for they’ll walk 500 miles to get a vote from party members and they’ll reclaim Brexit, because well, it means Brexit. So look out at your country fairs, where tweed and a blue rinse reign, for the man that dances the Morris may indeed be Boris!

As it dawns on the country that a choice between buffoonery and Marxism at No.10 are now the options, many may chuck their lot in with Chukka, who now liberally sports an orange pocket square.

Meanwhile, Brussels continues its preparations. Planners, influencers and logistics experts have all been involved, and the day is fast approaching.  You guessed it folks, the Tour de France starts in Brussels on July 6th. . As we read about the contestants literally falling over themselves to make it more interesting, let’s just celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first TDF victory of Eddy Merckx, Brussels born and bred.

Big Eddie has announced his initial England training squad for the Rugby World Cup in September and some corners of the press seem surprised at the exclusion of players who’ve not played since December. I thought we’d already discovered that having a large number of caps hanging up in the shed didn’t necessarily make you the best person for the job ad infinitum.

In the cricket world cup there are some big scores and thrilling games, also a bit of controversy with 5 players getting away so far with hitting stumps without dislodging bails. We’re halfway through now, so catch some if you can.

In the footie World Cup, Scotland head home after squandering a 3-0 lead over Argentina, whilst also being at the cruellest end of goal line technology. England went through, top of their group after straight wins.

We’ve been busy with Cheese & Wine this week, a private one on Wednesday for a group of chums, and then one of our regular Cheese & Wine evenings last night. As we’re getting along to the end of the season, with just a couple of places left for Thursday 18th July,we thought it expedient to come up with the dates for Autumn.

Thursday 12th September at 8pm – £20

Thursday 10th October at 8pm – £20

Thursday 7th November at 8pm – £20

Thursday 28th November – Cheese & Wine’s Greatest Hits for 2019 at 8pm – £20

If Cheese & Wine is not your thing we also have these…

Thursday 17th October Domaine Treloar at 8pm- £20

Thursday 5th December Champagne & Fizz at 8pm – £30

If you’re already busy on all of those dates, we’re sorry you’ll miss out on the fun!

Wine School

As Alex mentioned last week, summer is coming and you’re all going to disappear for large chunks of July and August. Give yourselves a reason to come back, if you leave it till September there’s a risk that the Wine Course you meant, but forgot, to sign up for before you went away is now subscribed.

Six Week Wine School –

Wednesday 2nd October – Wednesday 13th November (half term 23rd October) – £150 per person – Full details attached, unless we forget!

Tasting This Weekend

We’ll be wearing white shirts with Domaine Lebrun Pouilly Fume 2017 (£17.99). About a million years ago, when we sported Oddbins polo shirts, we used to sell lots of this wine.  The bottle has lost its distinctive orange label somewhere in the intervening years but the wine has lost none of its quality or verve.  Gooseberry, grass, minerals, lemons and limes all crop up somewhere between the start and the nice long finish.

We’ll be wearing red shorts with Lopez de Haro Gran Reserva 2010 (£21). After conducting extensive tastings, our in-house team (Alex and I, sacrificing ourselves again!) selected this silky little number. A blend of Tempranillo and Graciano aged for 30 months in oak barrels, it has complex berry, coffee and vanilla notes and a lovely velvety finish. A tip top Gran Reserva delicious with that pork chop you picked up at the Farmer’s Market for the barbecue on Sunday.

Finally news reaches us that Bill & Ted 3: Face The Music is now in production, so in their words: Be excellent to each other!

Rain, Raspberry & Rhubarb

June 14th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Alex has been holding forth this week, to anyone that will listen, about the joys of being old – and he should know.  The prospect of varifocals, varicose and various niggling ailments all sound too exciting to have to wait for and that’s before he came to his punchline – the older you are the more memories you have, providing you can remember where you put them of course….

So, with memories in mind and a Friday email to write, I thought I would take a trip down memory lane and see what we had written in the mid-June emails of years gone by.  My main purpose for this was to see on how many occasions we had mentioned the weather being rubbish for the time of year because, with our rose tinted peepers on, we oft forget.

So without further ado, the opening lines of our emails for the last 8 years:

17th June 2011

It had to rain really, it was Ladies day at Ascot.  Standing on Wimbledon Common on Thursday morning, gazing at an extremely bespattered, but nonetheless happy dog, a bizarre thought crossed my mind – I don’t have enough wet weather/monsoon clothing.  In June.  The week before the tennis starts.

Hurray, it was just as awful in 2011 as now – vindicated!

15th June 2012

Queens tennis in the afternoon, Euro football in the evening, US Open Golf following on from that – it’s already a busy weekend in Park Vintners World (new theme park coming soon), before we’ve even thought about selling any wine!

No mention of rain, plenty of sport though, funny that….

14th June 2013

Undoubtedly the most important news across the desk this week was that Mighty Boosh are to reform and play Festival Supreme at Santa Monica pier. Any chance of a London gig guys?

A shameless pitch by Wayne for some free tickets.

13th June 2014

So here’s our problem, we don’t have enough tellies.  The Test match starts at 11am, during which time Wayne wants to watch the Criterium-du-Dauphine cycling, then Queens wakes up for the tennis, now without Mr Murray.  At 2pm the US Open golf starts its day and then later on we have World Cup football.  Oh, and did I mention the Men’s Hockey semi-finals?

Sport and tellies – no obvious connection to wine here.

12th June 2015

So, I sent him off into the big city yesterday, with a bag full of corporate gifts, an oyster card and his mobile phone, which we had cross checked as being on and unusually, not critical for battery.  It was a lovely day, as you all know, so he had his shorts on and I really didn’t expect him back in a hurry.

Slightly surreal email this one, relating to a supposed striptease in St Pauls by one of our staff members….

17th June 2016

This week has been fun hasn’t it? Write the a-board put it out in the sunshine, watch the rain wash it off and repeat. Seven or eight times a day.

Hooray, it’s raining again!

16th June 2017

So here’s a question – what’s in a name?

So here’s the answer, you really don’t want to know…

15th June 2018

It’s been a funny old week, starting off in acrimony over the G6 ½ at the weekend. The take home being that Trumpolina seems to think that Europeans don’t buy enough bullets, and that Justin Trudeau is economical with the truth. The picture tweeted by Mutti Merkel seemed to sum it up, though our in house art expert insists that comparing the picture to renaissance art is a bit wide of the mark.

No weather or wine or sport in the opening lines – what were we thinking?

And now here we are, the 14th June 2019 – Wayne has been wearing shorts, valiantly and varicose free, for the last two weeks but yesterday even he snuck back into his Levi’s – those jokes about summer starting and finishing in February seem a little too prescient now.

Don’t blow your nose!

Not one but two sportsmen have been caught out doing just this over the last few days.  The Chris Froome incident is well reported and we wish him well of course – I have to say though, 35mph is a two-hands-on-the-handlebar speed for me.  Meanwhile, in the cagey world of UFC, fighter Donald Cerrone suffered a broken nose during a bout in Chicago.  In order to try and clear some of the airways between rounds he blew his nose and this clearing caused his right eye to swell shut immediately.  Not a photo for the faint-hearted, I’d suggest.

High street royalty

One of the biggest wine retailers released their full year figures yesterday, without much to cheer about.  Having shown some fairly epic losses over the last 12 months they aimed to reassure investors by suspending final dividends (?) and talking ‘positively’ about selling 200 of their branches – they seem to have 210 in total according to their website. 

So, suspend the divs and sell all the shops – not sure why you think there’s a problem?!  Still, at least they are in ‘advanced talks’ with multiple bidders over this sale.  However, if it doesn’t complete they will continue trading through December before starting afresh in 2020.  To our minds, these ‘advanced talks’ don’t sound quite as ‘advanced’ as advanced often means!

Raspberry & Rhubarb

Foxdenton, our fruit gin suppliers, kindly dropped off some reinforcements this week, just in time for the sunshine.  The 35cl bottles are perfect picnic partners and should fly out the door once we’re all back in shorts and polo shirts…

Foxdenton Raspberry Gin – £14.99

Foxdenton Rhubarb Gin – £14.99

Wine School

So, we held our seasonal Rose tasting last night – as you can imagine we had the heaters on full and battened down the hatches to ensure a tropical feel and a thoroughly jolly time was had by all.  What’s this got to do with Wine School you ask?  Well, everybody who was on the tasting last night had signed up quite early on for the limited spaces available – we have, in more recent days and weeks, had to disappoint quite a few of  you who had been meaning to sign up but had forgotten to actually do the signing up bit.

Which is how this links with Wine School. 

Very soon a reasonable portion of you will be, quite reasonably, disappearing off to sunnier climes for the summer and will be in and out of Wimbledon for most of July and August, oblivious to the fact that the Park Vintners Autumn Wine School is surreptitiously filling up.  Fast forward to September and the risk is that the Wine Course you meant, but forgot, to sign up for before you went away is now subscribed.

6 Week Wine School – Wednesday 2nd October – Wednesday 13th November (half term 23rd October) – £150 per person – Full details attached, unless we forget!

Wine & Cheese

If you don’t fancy six weeks of school but would actually prefer one evening of wine with a side order of cheese, then the good news is that we still have 6 spaces left on the next event:

Thursday 18th July – 8pm – Wine & Cheese Tasting – £20 per person

Wine this weekend

It’s Father’s Day this weekend and as our representative father, Alex has chosen these two to taste.

Sonberk Riesling V.O.C. 2015 – £23.99 – as a wise man once said, ‘what son doesn’t think his father is a berk?’, and so this wine was created. 

Obviously that has no truth about it at all and in fact Sonberk is the name of a mid-sized winery in Popice, Czech Republic.  Located in Moravia, the largest Czech winegrowing region, the winery is considered by many to be one of the best in the country, producing elegant and noble wines.  Established in 2003 but with a history dating to the 13th century, the Sonberk vineyard is 45 hectares with an extraordinary view of the Pálava Hill.  This Riesling has a beautifully fruity nose with hints of blossom and honey.  The palate has notes of dried apricots, honey and spice with a fine minerality and finish and gives its German counterparts something to think about! 

As he is planning to barbecue on Sunday, no matter what happens, the Flametree Embers Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 – £15.99 is his selection for the red.  Hailing from the marvellous Margaret River region, this is a cracking drop with aromas of violets, ripe black fruits and just a hint of chocolate and coffee.  Lovely and juicy in the mouth with lovely forward fruit this would be a real pleasure with that steak he is angling for, if anyone out there is listening?

That’s all for this week – let’s all treat the sun like a large golden Tinkerbell and show that we believe, not by clapping but by sporting shorts and t-shirts and suncream to encourage it to shine – who’s with me?  Oh, alright, back as you were….

Our best tip – don’t take sports tips off wine merchants…

June 7th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

And so, with that end of term feeling in the air, with journalists all desperately punning H.E.Bates novels and looking up all the different interpretations and definitions of the word May, we come to the end of Theresa Time.

By way of a small adieu, we thought we’d round up some headlines and news items that have peppered her time as leader:

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says he agrees with those calling for Theresa May to quit over cuts in police numbers.

This first appeared on the BBC News on the 5th June 2017 and, we notice, this wasn’t the last time that JC called for her departure

Theresa May’s narrow election victory has resulted in swathes of politicians calling for her to resign.

As The Metro happily reminds us, on the 9th June 2017, Theresa hasn’t always had the support of her team.

The Prime Minister is currently entertaining MPs at her Chequers country retreat, where she has allegedly told them she will quit as Prime Minister on August 30, 2019.

On the 27th August 2017, The Star, amongst other more prestigious titles (but they all had paywalls!), actually comes up with the most accurate prediction of all.

On the 9th November 2017, The Express spoke to Jessica Bridge, of Ladbrokes, who said: May looks safe for now, despite her strong and stable government doing their best to prove otherwise, but savvy punters are struggling to envisage plain sailing for the PM until year end.  Ladbrokes (then) said the chances of Mrs May being replaced in 2017 are 5/1 but there are 7/4 odds of it happening in 2018, 15/8 odds for 2019 and 4/1 odds for 2020 or later.

Moving to the 1st May 2018, The Mirror offers another resignation opportunity:

The rattled PM faced growing calls to resign for dodging responsibility for the heartless policies that led to the wrongful deportation of Windrush family members.  And with her “shield” Ms Rudd gone after she stepped down as Home Secretary for misleading parliament on targets, Mrs May was left exposed to attack.  But she refused four times to say whether she would quit…

On the 23rd November 2018, reading The Telegraph, we finally get back to the issue that will finally sink her – Europe: Theresa May has refused to confirm whether she would resign if her Brexit deal is rejected by MPs, as she insisted that it was the “the best deal for the UK.”  In an interview with BBC Radio 5 Live, Mrs May was asked three times if she would stand down but refused to provide an answer.

We now know where this chapter will end but do we know where the next chapter begins?  Let’s ask Ladbrokes again…

On 9th November 2017, these were the odds on who would be the next Conservative leader:

  1. Jacob Rees-Mogg 6/1,
  2. Boris Johnson 7/1
  3. David Davis 7/1
  4. Amber Rudd 10/1
  5. Andrea Leadsom 10/1
  6. Ruth Davidson 16/1
  7. Dominic Raab 20/1
  8. Michael Gove 20/1
  9. Philip Hammond 20/1

Then, on 6th June 2019, these were the odds:

  1. Boris Johnson 4/6
  2. Michael Gove 5/1
  3. Jeremy Hunt 8/1
  4. Andrea Leadsom 10/1
  5. Penny Mordaunt 20/1
  6. Dominic Raab 20/1
  7. Rory Stewart 25/1
  8. Sajid Javid 33/1
  9. Steve Baker 50/1
  10. Priti Patel 100/1

God help us all.

Fortunately for us there have been plenty of other things going on outside of politics.  As mentioned last week, we lost money on the Giro d’Italia; we also lost money on the Champions League; ideally Johanna Konta would have kept us in the Billecart-Salmon lifestyle we’re accustomed to but sadly not.  Having decided that most of the teams in the ICC World Cup are being offered too short, we took the West Indies as a bit of an outside punt and certainly some excitement and of course an immediate loss.

Our best tip – don’t take sports tips off wine merchants…

Perhaps most excitingly though, the FIFA Women’s World Cup starts tonight and we have a very real chance of making it deep into the latter stages of the competition.  We’ve backed England to win and with an outside punt on Australia – having looked at the bookies today, there is something strange about seeing football teams from Brazil at 25-1 and Argentina at a whopping 400-1!

Anything else?  Oh yes, it’s only WORLD GIN DAY again tomorrow (Saturday).  Not as complicated as it sounds, by all accounts, and one of our number certainly considers it to be Gin day everyday but has still taken tomorrow off just to be sure he doesn’t miss anything…

Suffice to say we’ll have our tasting Gins open, and ready for sampling – a reminder of our selection:

  • Elderwood English Gin – £33.00
  • The Eclectic Gin Society Original Blend – £35.00
  • Sacred Classic Gin – £35.00
  • Hepple Gin – £38.00
  • Bloody Ben’s Earlsfield Gin – £38.00
  • Sacred Juniper Gin – £38.00
  • Sacred Pink Grapefruit Gin – £38.00

If however Gin isn’t your bag, this weekend then we’ve got Rosé, White and Red open.

Chateau de L’Aumerade ‘Cuvée Marie-Christine’ 2018 – £14.99

The same Provence rosé that we’ve had for not sure how many years now and every bit as tasty.  A lovely pale salmon colour, with delicate red berry fruits, slightly floral and an impressively long finish.  We think it is the perfect wine for summer, great with all manner of food, or just with the Sunday papers and a deck chair!

Palacio del Camino Real Blanco 2017 – £10.99

A cracking blend of predominantly Viura with a bit of Malvasia and Grenache Blanc, grown in the higher vineyards of Rioja Alta.  Pale yellow in the glass, with lovely fresh aromas of stonefruit and citrus, framed with a touch of vanilla from a couple of months lazing around in the barrel.  A nice alternative to a light white burgundy we reckon.

Southern Dawn Pinot Noir 2013 – £14.49

From Marlborough, New Zealand, this is a wine we have had on the shelf pretty much since we opened.  I could give you all the guff about the soil in the vineyards, the angle of the slope the vines are planted on and the winemaker’s collection of 19th century corkscrews, but none of that is really relevant.  We sell this wine because we think it tastes brilliant: light with red cherry fruit character, a nice bit of age and a lovely fresh finish.

So come in and have a taste, be it gin or wine but, if you find you can’t manage it, Alex will be manning a stall at the Wimbledon Park Primary School Summer Fair on Sunday with many of the same tasting options available!

That’s all for now from us – have a soooper weekend!

End Of May

May 31st, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

The writing was on the wall, it’s been a long time coming, still that doesn’t remove the element of surprise does it? Here we are at the end of May, and despite wanting to stay in place and get on with getting on, there is no longer any support for the position. Time to move on we cry, and have put in place a very convoluted selection progress to select the successor.  

We have had 11 applications for the position; we’ve also had to listen to all of their arguments. Between you and me, some of the arguments are very similar, and some are ridiculously far-fetched.  Nonetheless, we have written all their names on a piece of paper that we like to call a ballot.

The ballot paper has been circulated amongst all of the interested parties with the two most popular to go up in front of a very secretive committee. When the committee has decided the winner, our chum Malcolm who sits outside JJ Spoon in Tooting will light his clay pipe, and puff white smoke before declaring the winner.

Elsewhere, if proof were needed that you should resolutely ignore our sporting tips, the Giro d’Italia’s pink jersey now looks like it’s for Richard Carapaz to lose, unless Vincenzo Nibali can “do a Froome” on Saturday’s  mahoosive day in the Dolomites. Our suggestion of Simon Yates looks unlikely to win, currently being 7 minutes off the pace. It’s been a brutal race and they all look a little tired if I’m honest.

The Cricket World Cup started yesterday at The Oval with England scoring first blood, defeating the South Africans by 104 runs, look out for Ben Stokes catch if you haven’t seen it. Today sees the West Indies and Pakistan putting willow to leather at Trent Bridge.

In other news Trumpolina is coming to visit next week. The Queen is super excited to be having him and his entire family round to Buck House for dinner. Can’t wait to hear how fabulous he is at building walls and where he is suddenly going to find all those rare earth minerals for next generation technology. She’s even got the builders in so he can’t stop over for breakfast!

Now I don’t know about you, but I saw him on TV yesterday and his hair looks yellower than ever. It has that weird fluorescence yellow colour that a glass of Red Bull has. Maybe he’s colouring it with Red Bull for a bit of extra lift?

Ooh hold on, we’ve just seen white smoke from Malcolm’s clay pipe…. June is to succeed May, as soon as tomorrow!

As it’s English Wine Week I thought I’d mention our two English Sparklers, we can offer them at 16.66% off 6 bottles. (That’s 6 for the price of 5 to you at the back)


Only released in November 2016 this blend of 90% Chardonnay and 10% Pinot Noir from Hampshire is truly delicious.  Rich strawberry notes wonderfully offset by some tart cranberry character.  Creamy texture and a clean crisp finish with some nice yeasty complexity too – really good!

Also it’s rather appropriate as it’s where the rules for the game of cricket as we know it were drawn up in the 18th century.


Handmade using organically grown grapes in Kent.  A crisp, fruit laden nose and a palate woven with finesse and elegance.  Hints of biscuitiness in the mid-palate are evidence of the length of time the wine sat on its lees.  A really well managed dash of acidity on the finish keeps the fruit and creaminess nicely balanced.

Cheese & Wine Tasting – Thursday 18th July at 8pm Still a few places for our last one before the autumn. As usual £20 saves your seat at the table.

Wine School – The next course is on Wednesday evenings (with a break between week 3 & 4 for half term) as follows:

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6
02/10/19 09/10/19 16/10/19 30/10/19 06/11/19 13/11/19

To book, call either Alex or Wayne on 020 8944 5224.

As usual £150 per person and payment reserves your place.

Tasting This Weekend

As I mentioned it’s English Wine Week this week, so we shall populate the white corner with New Hall Vineyard Bacchus 2018 – £14.49. A cracking, summery white with a lively elderflower character from some of the oldest Bacchus vines in the country, grown in an area originally planted by Romans’, not far from Chelmsford.

In the red corner, we’ll be aiming for some barbecuing given the weather I think, and what could be better with some barbecued lamb than a Rioja. We’ll go with Palacio Del Camino Real Crianza 2016 (£10.99) which we like with a butterflied leg, or else some koftes.

That’s it from us, drop in for a taste of Essex’s finest and have a great weekend!

I’ll drink to that!

May 24th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

I’ll drink to that.  A sunny Thursday, just before the long weekend, can only make everybody happy and, by all accounts, thirsty.  Thirsty Thursday.   Whilst many of you enjoy Rosé all year round, for some of us it’s a seasonal treat and I think that yes, yesterday was the season opener!

I’ll drink to that.  Park Vintners voted best high street retailer, forever.  Ok, not entirely true, in fact not true at all but, with the persistent demise of ‘big’ high street names, never say never – give it a few years we might be the last men standing.   First up this week was the Jamie Oliver business.  In many respects not a great surprise, as the writing seems to have been on the wall for a couple of years now, quality of the food has slumped and if you ever get the chance to read Marina O’Loughlin’s review from September last year you’ll be amazed it lasted this long.  So that’s 22 empty sites on the street already.  And then we move onto Croydon’s favourite son, Philip Nigel Ross Green, who surely now must be stripped of his knighthood and who has had one hell of a good week.  He too is shutting stores and looking to re-negotiate rents on his current sites, never a good sign – that’ll be 200 of his stores closed in the last 3 years… Oh, and at the same time, judging from what Peter Hain revealed in the Lords yesterday, Mr Green’s £2 billion net worth might be taking a bit of a hit quite soon in the courts.  I’ll drink to that.

Oh, and whilst we’re drinking, is anyone else just a trifle bored of what’s going on in Westminster?  We’ve all been more engaged than ever with politics for the best part of the last three years, we’ve all learnt a lot more about the political machinations and taken a far more vested interest in what the politicians are doing ever since that vote.  Now, though, we (here at least) have had enough.  We are really struggling to keep our eyes open every time a new democratic procedure is suggested; struggling to like, or empathise with, any of the key protagonists and, ultimately, struggling to see anyone coming out as a winner in this process.  So Teresa is actually now going?  Has she mentally already left, do you think?  When she goes, is that the problem solved?  Who is that great white knight waiting in the wings – or is it just the same old overweight mop?  Oh, and seeing David Cameron sending supporting tweets just served as bitter reminder of where all this started.

Let’s all have a drink.

And yesterday, in a continuation of the bizarre times we live in, we voted in the European elections.  I don’t think I’ve ever been confronted with such a long list of options to vote for and certainly a lot of ‘independents’ who I had never, ever heard of and, I have to confess, didn’t get a second glance.  In the booths you could see people standing there with the paper trailing down to the floor, putting their ‘X’ nearer the top and ignoring the bottom half – where does all the lost deposit money go to we wonder?  Europe?  How does that fit with the current situation?

And there’s not even any sport really to distract us.  Wayne is on his bike to Baku with 6,000 spare tickets, should you wish to make him an offer.  The Cricket World Cup is yet to start and the kerfuffle over a man born abroad but with a British passport and an English parent being picked ahead of other players has died down – let’s face it Eoin Morgan is the simply the lead that Jofra is following.  The Giro d’Italia, with Simon Yates almost 8 minutes off the pace, has been less of a viewing fixture here this year and all that means really is that Alex has been doing far more work with less distraction – I’ll drink to that.

Upcoming tastings – update

It seems we caught you all in receptive mood last week as the Treloar tasting on 27th June is now completely sold out.

We still have 4 spaces left on the Rosé tasting on Thursday 13th June – £25 per person.

We have 8 spaces left on our 72nd Wine & Cheese tasting on 18th July – £20 per person.

Further ahead, we still have plenty of space on our next Domaine Treloar tasting on Thursday 17th October but that might be a bit far into the future for most of us.

Wine School

Whilst we are looking into the future though, it’s worth me pointing out that we now have the autumn dates for our wine course – full details are attached but, in a nutshell, this is a six week, tasting focused course, with the purpose of getting you to try new wines and revisit old wines that perhaps you’d given up on. 

We’ll open about 60 wines over the duration, so at the very least your tastebuds should be tantalised.  Plus, you’ll be all educated and suchlike just before the Christmas party season kicks in and you’ll be able to impress your boss when you explain exactly how Champagne is made and why it’s so much better than Prosecco – we should all drink to that!

Wine School

Wednesday 2nd October – Wednesday 13th November (no class on 23rd October due to half term)

£150 per person – first come, first served!

Weekend wine drinking

As ever, we’ll endeavour to put something tasty in your glass this weekend and as a result we will be opening:

Sameirás Blanco 2017 – £17.49 – which is made from 5 grapes that just trip off the tongue – Treixadura, Albariño, Godello, Lado, Loureiro – but that are all indigenous to the Northwest of the Iberian peninsula.  A really quite exotic pineapple and nectarine nose with touches of mandarin and similar orange fruits on the palate followed by a beautiful dry/savoury finish with hints of pithy acidity as it fades – monkfish tail sautéed in butter with some steamed green leaves would rock here!

Domaine des Mailloches Bourgueil 2017 – £13.49 – which is a light red made from Cabernet Franc in the Loire valley.  This style of wine is one of life’s great joys and we have doubtlessly bored you all rigid about this before so no need to bore you again.  Lovely, juicy fruit and fine tannins, could be chilled if the weather suits, I’ll drink to that!

And with that we’re gone – in fact, it’s worth noting that as of 6pm tomorrow we will be gone until Tuesday morning, so, if we don’t see you, have a bonne weekend and stay hydrated, as I think I might have suggested more than once…..


May 17th, 2019

Fellow Wine Lovers,

This week finds us both wallowing in disappointment. As many of you know, we’re no strangers to a spot of nosebag and have been known, on occasion, to visit an establishment that might put a plate of something extremely tasty in front of us. But never, NEVER has anyone mistakenly given us a bottle of 2001 Le Pin. Neither of us has ever tasted any vintage of it, so that lucky diner at Hawksmoor in Manchester, who was the recipient of such a fortunate mix up, was lucky indeed.

Disappointment on hearing that an explorer breaking the record for the deepest ever sub dive down to 10,927 metres, in the Mariana Trench, found a plastic bag and sweet wrappers. He also found 4 new species of prawn – coming soon plastic wrapped to a supermarket fridge near you!

This Saturday sees Rugby League played at the Nou Camp in Barcelona for the first time, as Catalan Dragons host Wigan Warriors. Rumours that the expected crowd of 30 000 only warrants one turnstile being open, are possibly on the fake side of news.  Sadly for Wigan fans, The Boiler Club, Barcelona’s only Northern Soul night, seems to have closed down.

Thomas Cook seems to have had a bit of an oopsy daisy with £1.5 billion as Brexit curtails holiday plans, apparently. This commentator certainly has done no such thing and wonders if Airbnb and booking over the internet in general are not having a more disruptive effect than they’re getting credit for.

The Giro d’Italia is rolling on, nearly everyone has fallen off at least once and one of the favourites, Tom

Dumoulin, has headed home to recover from his injuries (in time for the Tour de France we suspect).  Mr Yates is still poised in the right place, we feel.

It would appear that Pret a Manger is proposing to take over fellow lunch chain Eat and turn them into vegetarian branches. We’ve already seen one headline suggesting “Eat to be gobbled up by Pret” and imagine it’s only a question of time before we see a headline suggesting they have “bitten off more than they could chew” or perhaps that the merger is a” bit hard to swallow”!

In Germany, a Munich based start-up, Lilium, has unveiled its prototype electric flying taxi. They claim it will be able to travel 186 miles in an hour and seat five people. They’ve successfully made the first flight and are now the first electronic jet to seek certification. Researching for this article revealed there are about 100 different electric aircraft projects on the go around the world, so watch this (air)space.

Winemaker Tasting – Domaine Treloar

Jonathan and Rachel Treloar own and run this small, vineyard and winery. Regarded by Jancis Robinson as the best in the Roussillon. They were also chosen as the Coup de Coeur (Favourite) Roussillon producer by La Revue du Vin de France, the country’s most influential wine magazine.

We’re really excited about this one, a couple of our most popular French wines come from this estate and we’re looking forward to welcoming Jonathan to the shop to meet you all.  So come along, taste his wine and ask those questions you’ve always wanted to ask a winemaker… here’s a list of the wines that we take from them – I suspect they will all be open to taste on the night!


‘La Terre Promise’ 2016 – £18.49

This white is a lovely rich blend of Grenache Gris, Macabeu and Carignan Blanc. From 35-60 year old vines, it has a lovely quince and buttered toast character and is made with natural yeasts and minimal sulphur. Named after the Bruce Springsteen song ‘Promised Land’, this is a fine match for one of those Mediterranean fish dishes with garlic and tomato.


‘Le Ciel Vide’ 2015 – £12.49

This unoaked red is made from Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre and Carignan. It is the most approachable of their red wines with crunchy forest fruits and an earthy, smoky character that’d be great alongside a sausage, or three, with mash and onion gravy.

One Block Grenache 2015 – £13.99

Since we listed this it has rapidly become a firm favourite. Mostly Grenache (including the Catalan variant Lledoner Pelut) and a small splash of Carignan, this has lovely dark brambly fruit, a hint of cumin, leather and tobacco. Wayne loved it with some Merguez sausages and winemaker Jonathan suggest lamb chops.

Three Peaks 2016 – £14.99

Classy blend of 50% Syrah, 30% Mourvèdre and 20% Grenache.  A rich and spicy blend that spent 12 months in French barriques and shows lovely crushed forest fruit character, a touch of earthy minerality and maybe even a hint of leather.  Proper, old school Roussillon made by an Englishman, how good is that!

‘Le Secret’ 2013 – £17.99

This wine is nearly all Syrah, rich with lovely dark black fruits, quite blackcurranty even, and a lovely fresh elegance to it too.  Great with a smoky chargrilled steak, I reckon.  It’s not just us that rate them highly; previous vintages have featured in Decanter Magazine’s Best Syrah’s in the World under £25.

‘Motus’ 2015 – £18.49

80% Mourvèdre, 10% Syrah 10% Grenache. A cracking wine this, a complex, almost autumnal aroma of stewed fruit, leather, roast coffee and mixed spice. The palate is an interesting combination of dark fruits, spicy tannins and an earthy minerality. A real wine-lovers wine, that Jonathan and Rachel suggest drinking with a duck breast in a wine and chocolate sauce.

‘Tahi’ 2011 – £25.99

Domaine Treloar’s icon wine. Tahi is the Maori word for “1”. It is made from the parcels of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre on Le Roubau, a rare limestone hillside, and aged for 12 months in French oak barriques. Then only the barrels which make the most harmonious combination are selected. There is toasty oak and roast coffee on the nose, perfectly balanced by the spicy fruit aromas. It is a very well balanced yet complex wine, which wine maker Jonathan suggests partner excellently with the steak recipes from Rick Stein’s “French Odyssey”.


Muscat de Rivesaltes 2013 – £11.99

A Late-harvested, fortified sweet aperitif and/or dessert wine.  It has a beautiful floral aroma and a rich honeyed palate with dried fruits and nuts.  Treloar Muscat de Rivesaltes always aims to be less sugary and have more richness than others.

So, hopefully that has sufficiently tickled your tastebuds, just give us a call or email us and we’ll reserve you a space!

Thursday 27th June at 8pm –


Wine School

A few of you have been asking us when we will next do our 6 week course.  The answer is after the summer holidays, most likely starting early October, on Wednesday evenings.  We expect to be able to confirm the dates very soon.

Late opening – Monday 20th May

We’ll be in town for a tasting on Monday but should be back by 4pm.

Tasting this Weekend

We thought we’d through you a curveball this week and open a brace of Malbec. Wearing the white hat will be Vicentin Blanc de Malbec 2017 (£22.50) from Lujan de Cuyo, a cracking white made from 100% Malbec grown at 1,000 metres highness, as some might say.

Sporting the red neckerchief will be Antonio Mas Single Vineyard Malbec 2016 (£16.49) from Tupungato. This is also 100% Malbec but grown at 1,300 metres.

That’s probably enough guff from us for this week, so sign up for Treloar, come taste a white Malbec and have a great weekend.