Dry December: The best EVER wine festival?

Fete de L’Escargot, (Dordogne), Fete de La Moule (Boulogne), Fete de L’Huitre (Arachon) are all annual festivals in France symbolic of their culture and gastronomy involving snails, mussels and oysters respectively. There are many others across the summer months "honouring" French cheese and ..... strangely ...... paella in the Languedoc. Then of course there are … Continue reading Dry December: The best EVER wine festival?

EULOGY FOR A WINERY – from “Gentlemans Portion”.

A beautifully written story of an outstanding winemaking family in The Rhône Valley, their wines, their loyalty to clients and the final loss of their vineyard due to illness of Sebastien, the young magician of a winemaker. Full story at Gentleman’s Portion. It was the spring of 2007 and we had just arrived in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, … Continue reading EULOGY FOR A WINERY – from “Gentlemans Portion”.

M. Chapoutier Crozes-Hermitage La Petite Ruche 2013

An artistic post from Vinthropology, a sommelier in Italy who writes extensive tasting notes, but who unusually sketches a piece of artwork around an image of a wine’s label to illustrate visually the aromas and flavours to be found. Whether you are a wine lover or not, her own artwork is to be admired and appreciated. Do visit her blog to see more.


Pleasantly nostalgic and earthy, distinct and wonderfully expressive. A bold character masterfully crafted.

Dense ruby in colour.

First impact of barnyard followed by intense aromas of blackberry, raspberry, cherry and peppercorns with soft hints of chocolate.

On the palate it’s dry with medium-high acidity and bold tannins, berry flavours quickly checked by peppery spices.

A bold and young wine showing potential for longevity.

88 points

Food pairings:

The balance of juicy berry flavours and spices makes this wine a perfect pair for red meat and game. Some examples: roasted lamb, barbecue ribs, filet mignon

Crozes-Hermitage is a French AOC found in the northern region of Rhône. It is one of the largest regions in northern Rhône and is generally viewed with less prestige than other neighbouring regions such as Côte-Rôtie and Hermitage, which also makes the prices more approachable. This AOC surrounds the hill of Hermitage, with terraced vineyards, a…

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Wine Wednesday: It’s Rose Time!

Summer is knocking on our doors, time to clean off the barbecue and stock up with …… plenty of Rose wine for the season! The range of Rose from different grapes and parts of the world has grown tremendously in the last couple of years, and whether you merely want to be “on trend” or finding some great bargains, it can help if you know a little more about how Rose is made and the scale of variety available to you. Sweet, savoury, or dry and fruity are the three styles you’ll come across so you need to experiment and shop around to find what suits you; then there’s the light Rose of Provence and the dark to deep red Rose of Tavel, both from France. In each case it’s also a question of grape variety, Cinsault, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Mourvèdre, Malbec, Grenache ……! But the whole world is making Rose so plenty to choose from so why not have a Rose party/barbecue with bottles of differing style and from different parts of the world? This reblogged post from San Antonio Vino tells you all you need to know ….

San Antonio Vino

Click for PDF version

Rose’ is super trendy right now and for good reason! Not only does it come in various festive shades of pink that signals the coming of summer, but it also comes in a variety of styles. From delicate and thirst quenchingly crisp, sweet and fruity patio pounders, to rich and savory sippers perfect for pairing with BBQ. But was is rose’, exactly? Read on to find out everything you ever wanted to know followed by some recommendations for classic examples of each style and/or region.

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“Chicken Tikka Masala …. and a bottle of your House Red please”

The concept of House Wine has never sat easily on my taste buds, nor on my wallet for that matter, neither in my student days when money was tight, nor today when it isn’t. My rationale is simple; would you buy a slice of “house cake”, a “house pie” or a “house sandwich” without knowing … Continue reading “Chicken Tikka Masala …. and a bottle of your House Red please”