Wimbledon Tennis, Tour de France, drinking rosé, birdwatching and sending the kids to visit Gran for a few days

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Well that was fun wasn’t it? The England football team certainly went a lot further than this commentator expected and played some lovely football along the way; it wouldn’t have happened under Sam Allardyce, is all I’m saying….

I think I expected a bit more from Belgium and a bit less from England before the tournament but that has changed. We’ve changed our forecasting tactics after the Croatian loss and switched from wine to beer.

Beer World Cup, from our stock… England 11 Belgium 1

The upside of this is that we can refocus our attentions on more traditional summer pastimes…Wimbledon Tennis, Tour de France, drinking rosé, birdwatching and sending the kids to visit Gran for a few days.

Wimbledon Tennis has had quite a lot of upset this year. It started off with Murray opting to compete with Tim Henman for dullest TV commentator award rather than actually play any tennis; he even wore John Inverdale’s grey jacket.

Shock and upset hasn’t stopped there either. We saw an enormous number of the top seeds go missing in action the first week, careless work by the groundsmen I’d say.

Novak Djokavic seems to be continuing his return from his ‘Lost in Space’ turn of bad form. Playing some fabulous and dreadful tennis all at the same time, I’m fairly sure he scored all the points for both him and Nishikori in the first set of the quarter final on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Roger Federer chose a really bad time to finally lose some sets, all in the same match is never a good strategy!

We should perhaps mention Rafael Nadal, watching him this year I couldn’t help but notice all his superstitious ticks and twitches. His routine of having two perfectly balanced towels behind him, adjusting his shirt, pinching his nose, and stroking his eyebrows now seems so perfectly timed that I am beginning to wonder if he has been replaced by a robot! I know they all get tested for performance enhancing drugs, but how do you test to see if he is a replicant? Perhaps we should ask Ridley Scott.

Last bit of Wimbledon news, is that apparently a men’s doubles match from last week has been reported for suspicious behaviour with regard to match fixing. Apparently in the hour before the game began there was a series of bets from accounts “with a history of wagering on suspicious matches”. The Tennis Integrity Unit is investigating and does not comment on operational matters.

Tour de France has been more eventful than the profile had suggested for the first week. Peter Sagan is beasting it, having two wins and two second places in the first five stages. Looks like the green jersey may just end up with his name on the back. On the GC front, clearly it’s early days with all main protagonists still in the frame, within a minute of the lead.

For those of you less interested in sport we can report that in the last week 30 species of bird have been spotted on Wandsworth Common including Pied Wagtails, Cormorants, Heron, Black Head Gulls and Collared Doves. The score for Tooting Common is a winning 32 species including Black Caps, Greenfinches and another Collared Dove. More unusually, a buzzard and a red kite have been spotted in the last month.

In other news Trumpolina, the USA’s toddler in chief, has been over this side of the pond. He started by upsetting people at the NATO summit in Brussels and then opted to visit the UK, where he didn’t visit London so as to not to be confused with a large hot air balloon but will visit Scotland where he should be able to get 18 holes in!

Drinking rosé has been happening, we’ve just got our top up shipment of Château de l’Aumerade Cuvée Marie Christine (£14.99 or 6 bottles for £78). Classic, top quality Côtes de Provence rosé that is our best-selling wine most years.

Meanwhile, over at Gran’s, your parents are showing an amazing affinity for Fortnite and your eldest daughter does appear to be rather taken with Werther’s Originals.

Tasting This Weekend

Reserve de Gassac Blanc 2017 – £11.29

A cracking blend of Viognier, Chenin Blanc, Petit Manseng and Chardonnay from the chaps who own Mas de Daumas Gassac (occasionally referred to as ‘Lafite in the Languedoc) but without the price tag of their top wines. Lovely warm, peachy citrus character with a nice weight and a long, gently spiced finish. Fabulous summer drinking, particularly with fragrantly spiced Thai treats, although Wayne is vehement about its positive influences on Syrian dishes.

Monte del Frá Bardolino 2017 – £12.99

Always lighter in style than Valpolicella and often overlooked, Bardolino is an absolute gem of a wine. Lovely aromas of soft cherry fruits with hints of brandy-snaps (kirsch?), too. One of our favourites this, with its palate showing cherry fresh fruits, soft tannins and a hint of soft spice on the finish, lightly chilled it’s just the ticket for tuna steak if you don’t mind the idea of red with some fish!
These will both be open from 5pm today and all day Saturday so come and have a swirl.

As a final note, due to a diary malfunction we now have 3 spaces available for our Wine & Cheese Tasting next Thursday 19th July – £20 per person, 8pm start. Save them from themselves – 9 people shouldn’t be eating 12 people’s portions of cheese!!

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