Let’s try and get more experts out there before Christmas – Wine School starts Wednesday 28th September

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Finally we’ve managed to stop focusing on Zika, unfinished stadiums and leaky pipes in the Olympic village to concentrate on the main purpose of Rio 2016 – to make us all vocal experts on sports that we hadn’t worried about since 2012.

Wayne is an acknowledged expert on cycling and thus we have had reasonably coherent, technical conversations on this subject, however handball is discussed more at the level ‘don’t they throw the ball hard’, gymnastics is ‘wow, they’re strong’ and double trap shooting ‘looks fun to do but is no real spectators sport’.

However, with our perceived expert status, we have also had to field questions from the younger members of our families regarding the penalty system in water polo – ‘I think something must have happened underwater’, the scoring system in beach volleyball – ‘I don’t know why they only go to fifteen in the third set, nor do I know why the ladies only wear bikinis and the gents surf shorts and singlets…’ and ‘yes, that is what happens if you pee in the diving pool!’

Suffice to say, we’re thoroughly enjoying the games and debates that ensue.

You can be an expert too…

According to an untraceable survey conducted by the Coop, and subsequently rewritten in a number of trade rags trying to fill pages during slow news August, 38% of British wine drinkers consider themselves to be extremely knowledgeable about wine and 70% of those polled are more interested in wine than they were 10 years ago. Quite where the Coop fits into this wine revolution I’m not sure, having watched their selection over the years, I don’t think they have brought a great deal to the table.

Having consulted our calculators we deduce that 62% of people, in a wine survey, don’t consider themselves experts (which I suspect is modesty on many people’s part) yet clearly enjoy wine regularly enough to do the survey – time for a Wine School plug!

Let’s try and get more experts out there before Christmas – Wine School starts Wednesday 28th September at 8pm and continues on until Wednesday 9th November – as we may have mentioned before, it’s a six week course with a week off in the middle (Wednesday 26th October) for half term. According to the Coop, the four favourite wines are Rosé, Prosecco, Merlot and Chardonnay – we’ll show you some of these of course but we’ll also show you so much more exciting stuff amongst the 50+ wines you’ll taste over the six weeks.

Become an expert by Christmas – £150 per person, just 5 spaces left.

Is Pokémon killing the pub?

No, Alex, it’s not. Get off your Pokémon high horse. True, 21 pubs are closing every week but this is better that 27 a week from a few years back. It’ll take 38 years for them all to close by which time Pokémon will be well and truly over. And since we both know how well we supported the pubs in Wimbledon Village last night, I wouldn’t worry too much…

Is it just me, of is it getting hot in here?

Heatwave coming this weekend, lots of people already enjoying heatwaves elsewhere but we’re still here tasting wine and talking twaddle – both before and definitely after.

For those of you lucky enough to still be around, we will be opening a couple of treats, things we just really enjoy.

Kalin Cellars Chardonnay Cuvée W 1995, Livermore Valley, California – £35.00 – we tasted this a few months back and were startled by the freshness, the length and the all round satisfaction a 21 year old Chardonnay could give at this price.

Geoff Merrill Reserve Shiraz 2007, McLaren Vale, South Australia – £29.99 – harvested in 2007, bottled in July 2010, drinking anytime from now until the last pub closes in 2050 – what Geoff can do with Shiraz is a gift few winemakers possess!

Come and taste them both, revel in their fine flavours and get one step closer to becoming an ‘expert’!!

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