You’ve earned it, not just today but the whole of your life, you have been earning this glass of wine!

Fellow Wine Lovers,

It’s been a distressingly sombre week, with very few laughter moments, so I feel a bit of whimsy is called for.

You’re born.  You grow up, you go to school, you become a teenager.  You rule the world for a few years because you now know everything.  Perhaps you then go to University, become a nurse, join the armed forces.

You go out for drinks.  You find suddenly that you’re going out for drinks more often with just one person.  Suddenly that person is stealing half your duvet in the middle of the night and resting their cold feet on the back of your legs.

Sod it – would you do me the great honour of…. etc .  You get married, you smoke cigars.  You give up cigars in order to be allowed back in to the marital bed.  You carry on going to work.

Children arrive.  You smoke cigars again.  This time you really do give them up when you see yourself in the mirror looking more Churchill than Tom Selleck.  You sell your flat, buy an estate car, start to seriously consider the merits of owning a shed.  And a lawnmower.  Before you know it you have all of the above, plus 6 fish, a dog, a hamster and more High School Musical DVDs than is safe.

Someone, your Mum usually, mentions schools.  What do you mean schools?  I only just left… twenty years ago.  Blimey.

And so it comes to pass.  It’s 8.30pm, kids are in bed, dinner’s in the oven, time for a cheeky glass of wine.  You’ve earned it, not just today but the whole of your life you have been earning this glass of wine.  Respect it, enjoy it, sniff it, swirl it, savour it, luxuriate in it – this is what it’s all been building towards. 

But what is it?

Erm, I think it’s a Sauvignon, but it might be a Chenin Blanc, I’m not sure, but I quite like it and the bloke in the wine shop rattled on about citrus and acidity and balance and mouthfeel and apples and floral blossom and good long finish and… aaaah, why don’t I know more????

Because you haven’t had time.  In your Mars life of work, rest and play, you have never actually had the chance to appreciate your drinks.  You can change a car tyre, juggle spreadsheets, juggle even, snowboard, cook a mean Paella and explain the nuances of being offside to a six year old, but you still haven’t got a Scooby what’s in your glass.

Time for us to offer some help.

Our offer

How do you fancy a couple of hours a week, for six weeks, out of the house, tasting wine?  We’ll provide spittoons (still in mint condition, but there just in case!) and some gentle education. 

The first week we’ll learn how to taste wine and you will get to practice with at least 8 different wines.

Weeks 2 and 3 we will continue our tasting practice with many different white wines and different grape varieties – let’s say about another 20 wines.

Week 4, Wayne will guide you magnificently through the wines of Bordeaux and their alter ego’s in other regions of the world.

Week 5, more red wines, from all over the world.

Week 6, bubbles, bubbles, bubbles.

In amongst all this we’ll try some Rosés, some sweet wines and examine common wine faults.  We’ll also discuss food and wine matching and cellaring.

You’ll try in the region of 60 wines, and if nothing else, by the end you should have a fairly good idea of what you do and don’t like, and you’ll have discovered a number of new grapes that you hadn’t previously dared to try.

Sound good?  The course starts on Wednesday 1st May at 8pm, and wraps up on Wednesday 12th June.  There is a week break (Wednesday 29th May) for half term, or as we like to call it, a revision week.

It costs £150 per person and we provide everything you need.

To recap

  • 2 hours a week, for 6 weeks, drinking wine
  • That’s probably enough of a recap…

As they say on those marvellous TV adverts, our team are here and ready to take your call on 020 8944 5224.  Or you can email us – – or pop in and see us, which is by far the best idea, because we’ll have wine open to taste tonight and tomorrow.

Wine open to taste

Wow, I’m slick.

Wayne’s off on his bike somewhere this weekend, so I’m in charge for once.  Pandemonium.

Whilst I would love to open every bottle in the shop when the guvnor’s not here, I’m under strict instructions and am limited to just the two bottles.  I’ve opted for two wines from the Australian estate De Bortoli The Accomplice Semillon-Sauvignon 2012 and The Accomplice Shiraz 2012 (both £8.49), which we believe are extremely good value, really approachable everyday quaffing wines. 

If you haven’t earned that glass of wine…

… but actually consider a cold beer to be a suitable lifetime achievement award then you may be interested to know that we have taken on two more beers from our new local superstar , Rocky Head Brewery.  Steve, who creates the magic down there on Kimber Road, has an extremely efficient sales patter – I’ve brewed a couple of new beers, how many would you like?! – and we then tell him how many, and he drops them round, no messin’.

The two NKOTB (if you know what that is without looking it up you should be feeling as ashamed as I feel for writing it) are:

Rocky Head AAPA, which stands for Anglo American Pale Ale, is described as a hoppy, fruity pale ale brewed with the finest English malts and yeast and huge amounts of aromatic American leaf hops.

Rocky Head Hop Ditch is their take on a Belgium sour.  Masses of tropical hop flavours a just a refreshing kiss of acidity.

Both come bottle conditioned in 500ml format, both are £4.00, and both arrived in the shop last Saturday.  So they really are new.

I’m here today and tomorrow, tasting wine, writing tasting notes, signing people up to the Wine School, so why not swing on by and see me and remember, if you’re running the marathon, all that pasta-based carb loading can only be enhanced by a nice glass of wine!

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