Reliable Surprises

Fellow Wine Lovers,

It’s been a week since we last spoke, and the world has rotated 7 times, which is nice and reliable and unlike a lot of other things that have happened this week.

Things that we could rely on to happen were:

  • Suella making a speech and managing to wind everyone up
  • Rishi making a speech and managing to upset the top half of the country
  • Every Conservative speaker studiously avoiding the multitude of elephants in the room
  • Trump using  the words ‘witch-hunt’, ‘fraudulent’, ‘fake’ and ‘disgrace’ when talking about his court case
  • KPMG 2023 CEO Outlook report released
  • A football manager complaining about VAR
  • Ben Stokes being injured…
  • …and England losing
  • Mark Cavendish coming out of retirement

The surprises were:

  • that Liz Truss MBGA speech
  • 400 people queuing to listen to the aforementioned Loopy Liz
  • Rishi paving the way to make tobacco potentially more illegal than cannabis
  • Akshata Narayana Murty, Rishi’s best friend,  making a particularly toe curling intro speech
  • Rishi then referring to her as ‘Truly the best long-term decision for a brighter future I ever made’ as if she was another new investment opportunity…
  • For those of you working from home in your dressing gown – the KPMG 2023 CEO Outlook report reveals that:

a) 64% of CEOs believe that there will be a full return to office in three years’ time

b) 87% of CEOs are likely to reward employees who make an effort to come into the office with favourable assignments, raises or promotions

  • Jürgen Norbert Klopp calling for a replay of the last Liverpool game, as if it’s the first time a wrong decision has been made that affects the outcome of a match
  • Klopp then calling for an investigation into Sir Geoff Hurst’s extra time goal in the 1966 World Cup Final
  • Frank Lampard then calling for an investigation into his disallowed goal in the 2010 World Cup

Ok, so the last two aren’t true but I think I’ve made my point.

However, I’m not really sure where professional sport will be in 10 years’ time, given all the rising costs and demands on the hosts.   The Commonwealth Games is currently without a 2026 venue; the only people interested in hosting Euro 2028 are the UK & Ireland after Turkey dropped out; and the 2030 World Cup will seemingly be hosted by Spain, Portugal and Morocco but with the first three matches being played in Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay!

Oh, and then we read that The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, fresh from playing against Qatar at St James’ Park on Wednesday and winning 4-1, has announced its intention to bid for the 2034 World Cup.  Other contenders are likely to be China; The Association of Southeast Asian Nations; Uzbekistan & Kazakhstan and Australia & New Zealand (who, if you recall, have just dropped the Commonwealth Games) – so it feels like the Saudi bid stands a chance and the Sportwashing will continue.

Meanwhile, in a theatre in the West End, Just Stop Oil were settling down to watch Les Misérables….

In the world of wine, not so much has moved or shaken this week – we have continued our tastings of ‘Wines for Christmas’ and are hopefully getting towards some sort of consensus which should soon translate into new wines on the shelves.  However, talk of Christmas feels a bit premature as we read that September temperatures were ‘gobsmackingly bananas’ – and that’s a direct quote from a climate scientist.  The gobsmack is due to continue it would seem, as the forecast for this weekend is wall-to-wall sunshine until next Wednesday and temperatures around 24 Celsius!

Not sure we’ve got enough Rosé for this…

I really thought I was going to be opening autumnal reds by now but as it isn’t yet time, we’ll be opening a white and a red that will be very happy alongside your 8th October barbecued spatchcock.  Both come from our pals at Barton Vintners, producers in Walker Bay, South Africa:

Barton Chenin Blanc 2022 – £12.99 – Walker Bay is considered to be an area with exciting potential: the region has varying altitudes and ideal soils that help produce some world class, elegant wines.  This Chenin has a lean, green apple and white pear nose whilst the palate has a full, rounded mouth-feel, still with the apple and pear but also some hints of spice and lingering acidity.

Barton Rouge 2020 – £10.99 – a firm favourite of ours, this is a juicy blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Merlot, giving us a rich and fruit driven wine with dark brambly fruits and a touch of spice, yet without too much tannin to get in the way of the fun. A real food all-rounder too….

And with that we’re gone.  Seems that silly season is upon us with a whole swathe of significant birthdays looming, so if you’re hitting the big 40, 50 or 60 even, this one’s for you!

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