Magnums, Claret and Donald

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Some questions and thoughts for you to ponder that have arisen around the Park Vintners water-cooler/spirits tray this week…


  • If the US Presidential election has been ‘rigged’ in the way ‘The Donald’ seems certain of, then what is he going to do if he wins in November – call for a re-election, surely?


  • Is it possible to bet the double on Leicester winning the Champions League whilst being relegated from the Premiership?


  • Does Chris Froome believe in Bradley Wiggins?


  • If the pound reaches parity with the currency used over the channel, does that mean we have effectively joined the Euro? Certainly not a Brexit side-effect that was voted for…


  • Whatever happened to the bear in the porkpie hat? Hofmeister (low alcohol, low flavour, low cost) was put out to pasture in 2003 but apparently is about to be re-launched as a 5% abv Helles lager, made in Bavaria.  Was Kumbuka, the roving silverback gorilla who made a bid for freedom last week at London zoo, making an early audition for the adverts, which included necking a 5 litre cask of squash?


  • Wine is going to get more expensive – all our suppliers are telling us this and we understand. However, will it get cheaper if the pound strengthens?  We suspect not…


  • Did anyone know who ‘that chap in Manchester’ that Wayne referred to last week in relation to Bob Dylan was? Puzzled looks everywhere, here.


  • How do you solve a squeeze on finances? Buy lots of wine – which is what we did this week.


Every now and then we receive a catalogue from Forman & Field (strapline: Restaurant quality food direct to your door), which is the mail order side of H. Forman & Son, purveyors of quality smoked salmon and, we later learnt, £1,000 Christmas Hampers.  Anyway, we looked through the catalogue before lunch the other day, salivating gently and realising that the offering from Coop was not going to be able to match what we were seeing on the page.  We also observed, scattered through the catalogue, various bon mots to encourage you to buy – “The Queen said our brownies were the best she had ever tasted”,  “Oh my word! The best pudding ever. (Mr & Mrs Slater, East Dulwich)”, or “See page 88 for more gifts and gourmet hampers”. 


Our favourite, however, was: “Our advice: Order more than you think you’ll need!”


Brilliant.  So we did.  Not smoked salmon from them, mind, but Claret from other people.  Oh, and magnums.



2011     Chateau La Providence         Bordeaux Supérieur                          £12.49

2012    Chateau Deville                     Cotes de Bordeaux                            £11.89

2010    Diane de Belgrave                 Haut Medoc                                       £22.99

2006   Chateau Fourcas-Dupré       Listrac-Medoc                                    £23.99

2010    Chateau Fourcas-Dupré       Listrac-Medoc                                    £20.99

2010    Chateau des Cabans                         Medoc                                     £17.49

2005    Chateau Beau-Site                St Estèphe                                          £28.99

2009   Chateau Le Boscq                 St Estèphe                                          £40.99

2010    Chateau Brown                      Pessac Léognan                                 £36.99

2004   Clos Sainte Anne                   Premieres Cotes de Bordeaux         £16.99

2010    Jean-Pierre Moueix             Lussac Saint Emilion                        £15.99

2011     Chateau Chereau                  Lussac Saint Emilion                        £16.99

2010    Chateau Roudier                   Montagne Saint-Emilion                  £18.99

2009   Chateau Grand Barrail

Lamarzelle Figeac                 St Emilion Grand Cru                       £31.99

2010    Chateau Grand Barrail

Lamarzelle Figeac                 St Emilion Grand Cru                       £31.99

2006   Chateau Chantalouette         Pomerol                                              £33.99



NV       Moutard Grande Cuvee        Champagne                                        £60.00

NV       Moutard Prestige Rose         Champagne                                        £62.00

2009   Chateau Le Crock                  Saint-Estèphe                                    £70.00

2005    Chateau Liversan                  Haut-Medoc                                       £46.99

2010    St Emilion JP Moueix           St Emilion                                          £38.99

2005    Vieux Chateau Gaubert        Graves                                                £46.99

2000   Vieux Chateau Gaubert

DOUBLE MAGNUM              Graves                                                £125.00

2012    La Cote Sauvage

Cairanne                                 Rhone                                                 £29.99

2014    Meerlust Red                         Stellenbosch                                       £26.99

2012    Meerlust Rubicon                  Stellenbosch                                       £52.00

2012    Ramon Bilbao

Edition Limitada                    Rioja                                                   £31.99

2014    Talmard Macon Uchizy         Maconnais                                          £29.99


Rigged voting


By my reckoning, the best and most honest way to get votes rigged in your own favour, Mr Trump, is to appeal to the voting on a platform of honesty, integrity and personality and thus just get more people to vote for you.  Simple.

With this in mind, if you think we are displaying suitable levels of honesty, integrity and personality and, dare I say it, you think we are your favourite shop in Wimbledon and ‘should have gotten it!’, then please vote for us in the Time Out #LoveLondonAwards


Rioja’n roll


If it’s October then it must be time for Rioja.  For the last three weeks, with your help, we have been sipping and slurping our way through the shop’s stocks of the finest wines from this gastronomic heartland, all in the name of #ShopRioja.  Long may this continue we say, and it will for this weekend and next certainly.


For this weekend we will be sampling two reds – it is definitely Autumn now – in two different styles.


Ramón Bilbao Edición Limitada 2o13 – £14.99. 

Rodolfo Bastida, winemaker since 1999 has a philosophy: ‘Winemaking can be like painting. You can use a big brush and a big pot of one colour to obtain something that’s pretty bland and uninteresting… Or you can use a small brush, with lots of small pots of different colours to give character and complexity.’  The wines have received much acclaim in the press and they were voted Winery of the Year in 2009 and again in 2014.


Made in the Crianza style, it is fermented in large oak barrel and then aged in French oak barrique for 14 months and then 9 months in bottle before release.  100% Tempranillo, 100% vegetarian, 100% vegan, 100% delicious.


Bodegas Ontañón Gran Reserva 2005 – £25.99.

Raquel, Ruben, Leticia and Maria Pérez Cuevas are part of the 5th generation of the Cuevas family to make wine in Rioja Baja -their father, Gabriel, inherited parcels of vineyards just outside the town of Quel on the higher slopes of the Sierra de Yerga mountain range.


A classic blend of Tempranillo with a splash of Graciano the wine spends 36 months in a mixture of American and French oak, and then 24 months in bottle prior to release.  We had this on our most recent wine and cheese tasting and it went down a storm – we have limited stocks currently and if you taste it I suspect you’ll work out why!


That’s it from us this week – come and taste some fab wines over the weekend and have a natter by the spirits tray – try some of our  back-in-stock Foxdenton Sloe Gin – £23.99 and put the world to rights.  Last words today will go to Mr Trump, good advice that we all should heed, particularly The Donald himself:


“Watch, listen, and learn.  You can’t know it all yourself.  Anyone who thinks they do is destined for mediocrity.”

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