Yes, Thursday 15th February is too late…

Fellow Wine Lovers,

Time to raid your piggy banks; it’s an expensive week coming up.

Snowfall in in Europe has been less than the record breaking January dumps but there is no sign of a thaw it seems , plus a good base in most resorts means that there will be plenty of skiing going on as the majority of lifts and runs are open and avalanche risks are low.  With the prospect of sunshine rather than snow there will be ample opportunity to sunbake whilst having a cheeky drink up the hill – 250 euros for a bottle of Mumm Cordon Rouge NV in Val d’Isère will have you shifting around for loose change down the banquette…

Half term of course is more expensive – at least when the children are captive behind the heavily locked gates of school they seem less capable of burning through your wallet.  Come half term though and suddenly they need lunch, entertaining and pocket money –the brutes.  Check the pockets of that overcoat you haven’t worn for a few months, there might be a tenner in there….

Valentine’s Day.  A day that should be about the expression of free love and true romance, which aren’t currently tradeable commodities, is apparently going to have us all spending in the region of £650 million, according to Mintel.  If we can get just 0.1% of that business we’ll have filled our coffers sufficiently to cover skiing drinks and long exeat!

On Saturday we have ample opportunity to wager heavily and empty our wallets over and over again in the rugby as Ireland battle Italy at 2.15pm and England introduce Wales to the delights of playing outdoors at 4.45pm; we will already have staked our Valentine’s money on the Tottenham v Arsenal goalless draw and our only hope of any return should be in the Scotland v France match on Sunday but unfortunately the odds are rubbish!  My bet this weekend – a draw in Dublin at 125/1 seemed the only offering actually worth filling a slip out for… just imagine, this time next year, we’ll be millionaires!

Then we have a feast day on Tuesday as we gorge ourselves silly on blinis and caviar and smoked salmon and other such hedonistic delights in preparation for our metaphorical 40 days in the wilderness starting on Ash Wednesday…

However, if your choice of worship is not so much Christian and more traditional Buddhist or Taoist then you will be waiting until Friday for you festivities as we usher in the Year of Dog with all the gusto and Champagne a New Year that arrives on a Friday should receive!

So, pick your pastime and spend accordingly unless you’re like Wayne, then you’ll be celebrating all of the above so it’s definitely time to raid your piggy banks – it’s an expensive week coming up!

That’ll be £650,000,000, please

Whilst you won’t find me in the corner of a crowded bistro whispering sweet nothings into my loved ones ear on Wednesday 14th February, I will of course be having a bottle of bubbles, or a bottle of wine, or a bottle of both at home with my wonderful wife – but what will it be I hear you clamour?

Well, very high up on the wish list is a small bottle of Foxdenton Rhubarb Gin (14.99) and a bottle of Herbert Hall Brut (32.99) to make a very British, lightly pink hued version of a Kir Royale as it were – I might keep a bit of gomme syrup nearby just in case the tartness of the gin and the dryness of the Kentish fizz are a stop too far and it needs a drop of sugar syrup to soften out the edges – I’ll happily experiment.

On the wine front then, I will skirt around the Rosé option, largely because my wife will thump me if I bring it home (not a fan) and partly because I will have just drunk a bottle of fizz and half a bottle of gin… but don’t let me stop you from enjoying a nice bottle of Château de L’Aumerade Cuvée Marie-Christine (13.99) to bring back some summer sunshine!

A refreshing glass of one of either The Accomplice Chardonnay or The Accomplice Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc (both 8.99) seems an appropriate toast to my partner in crime before moving onto a delicious bottle of Château de Belleverne St Amour 2016 (12.99) from the heart of Beaujolais, Le Cru des Amoreux as it likes to call itself!

At this point I will need to put a stop to the tippling because I will have to go to work but again, don’t let me stop you….

Tasting this weekend

With all that’s mentioned above I think we’ll open The Accomplice Semillon Sauvignon Blanc and the St Amour – the rhubarb gin is open anyway and you’ll just have to trust us on the Herbert Hall front, it’s fab.

Should none of our Valentine suggestions tease you then do remember that Champagne is always available.

Equally, should any of our sport betting tips fail to appeal, you can always still bet on Scotland, Italy or France winning the grand slam at 1,000-1 apparently!?


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