Is now the time for Count Binface?

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Voting, missing out on selection to the Lions squad for the South Africa series and godawful weather – I think that covers the week for all of us.

Having spent the week looking at various manifestos, particularly those regarding the role of London Mayor, I have to contend that by far the most enjoyable and, dare I say it, likely to be acted on was that of Count Binface.  I’m not sure how Richard Hewison from Rejoin EU could promise his voters that we would reverse Brexit bearing in mind his remit only covers London but I am sure that Count Binface would be more likely to succeed in point 19 of his manifesto: The hand dryer in the gents’ toilet at the Crown & Treaty, Uxbridge, to be moved to a more sensible position.  In fairness to Richard though, Binface also had at point 10: London to join the EU.  Perhaps there might have been sense in them working together to increase their voting share, under the lead promise of: Hammersmith Bridge to be repaired, and renamed Wayne – I know of one vote that was guaranteed and they could have doubled these numbers if they’d promised to rename all the parks: how does Hyde Park Vintners, NCP Vintners or Park Vintners & Ride sound?

But they didn’t, and hopefully lessons have been learned for next time because I’m sure the Count will be back even if Richard perhaps isn’t…

And now the weather – what goes on there?  It’s still pigging freezing unless you’re in the sun and as a consequence we have had an astonishing number of customers expressing nostalgia for this time last year – I repeat, what goes on there?  Anyway, we checked our archives and this is what we wrote on 8th May 2020:

I don’t know about you but I’ve found it a bit fresh at points this week yet have been enjoying the sunshine nonetheless. We were chatting about how different the mood might have been if it had been raining for these past six weeks, we won’t dwell on it though as we’ve a lovely long weekend ahead of us. Today is the May Day Bank Holiday Monday, despite my calendar saying it’s Friday.

So, put those rose tinted spectacles away all of you, life wasn’t any better this time last year!

It was also this weekend last year that we all sat down and watched Boris’ now famous address to the nation, telling us that lockdown wouldn’t be ending, pubs would not be opening and what, as Matt Lucas brilliantly parodied, we should do:

“So we are saying don’t go to work, go to work, don’t take public transport go to work, don’t go to work.  If you can work from home, go to work.  Don’t go to work.  Go outside.  Don’t go outside.  And then we will or won’t, something or other.”

In the world of Gin, finally there is some sense being talked in relation to what does and doesn’t qualify as ‘craft’. 

Harpers magazine recently held a panel discussion, entitled: ‘Think Gin: Modishness versus Marketing’.

A small batch gin producer expressed their frustration saying:

“The term ‘craft’ has been hijacked by several of the larger distilleries; unfortunately there is no legal definition of a craft brand… To cite an example, we were contacted several weeks ago by an individual looking for a supplier reference, who was starting a new gin brand. We welcome new faces in the market, but the individual stated that they had simply hired a company to make the gin for them – about 1,000 bottles per day.  I tried to explain that this does not qualify as craft gin.  Their response was: ‘Yes, but it sells well, doesn’t it’.”

(James Lawrence,, 05 May, 2021)

Anyway, we applaud these sentiments, which is why we looked Walter at Hepple and Braden at Doghouse squarely in the eye and demanded to look under the bonnet before we listed them!

As a post-script to this, the small batch gin producer’s website banner page states that they are ‘THE WORLD’S BEST CONTEMPORARY LONDON DRY GIN’.  It’s funny but there seems to be no legal definition of best….

Anyway, that’s enough from us this week – it might be rose weather but then it might not.  So buy rosé and sit in the garden.  Or don’t buy rosé and sit inside.  Sit inside whilst getting rosy on the outside.  Or buy white and red and rosé but drink beer.  Take an umbrella, take a parasol but Ladies and gentlemen of the class of ’99 – wear sunscreen!


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