Category Archives: Grape Varieties

Flash Recommendation: Fairtrade Organic Chardonnay, Santa Florentina, Argentina

What:  Fairtrade Organic Unwooded Chardonnay, Santa Florentina, Famatina Valley, Argentina 12.5%,
Where Out: Bel and The Dragon, Cookham, Berkshire £5.00 175ml glass/  £21 a bottle
Where In: Corney and Barrow, online, £8.50
Who: A date (A.K.A. my husband – someone I hadn’t spoken to for a number of weeks a) in a civilised setting b) using eye contact due to some kind of multi-tasking activity e.g. wiping tomato sauce from a small person’s face c) without referring to him directly but via one of the same small people as ‘Daddy’).
When:
Last minute flogging of Kaiser Chief’s tickets, in favour of a quiet, local, Friday night out, drinking wine and eating curry (without regret – boring, I know, but soooo much easier).
Food match: Had I been eating and not heading down the road to the Spice Merchant Cookham Tandoori, the mussels would’ve gone down a treat.
Conclusion: A dry and soapy, citrus wine with a perfect acidity softened by the buttery creaminess reminiscent of popcorn flavoured Jelly Belly jelly beans. Bel and The Dragon doesn’t have the cheapest wine list in the vicinity but it’s very comprehensive and I look forward to heading back to trying more. Plus, if this wine was anything to go by, the quality of wine seems to fairly reflect the price (I tested some of their competitors just to be on the safe side).
Bonus point: For an ‘everyday’ drinker to take home or for any of your wine buying needs, pop next door to the lovely Old Butcher’s Wine Cellar  (website currently under development) for a bottle of Paul Mas Chardonnay.

Links: Why Chardonnay is back in fashion, Dynamic Domaines Mas

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Filed under Eating/ Drinking Out, Flash Recommendation, Grape Varieties, South America, Uncategorized, Wine and Food Pairing

Making me work for my wine

So, I haven’t been able to blog as much as I would like to over the last couple of weeks, partly due to being extra-specially knackered but also because I’ve cancelled the cleaners so have been doing the housework when I want to be blogging! What this does mean however is that the money that I am saving on the cleaners can be spent on more/ better wine. The opportunity to do so presented itself to me when an old wine associate of mine, Tony Hill, one-half of Bordeaux and Beyond, kindly let me help out on his stand at a local wine fair back in November to give me a taste of the wine trade. Continue reading

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Filed under Eating/ Drinking In, Eating/ Drinking Out, France, Grape Varieties, South America, Wine Tasting

From Chunder to Wonder

Hardys_ReserveAs someone who is well aware that Australia produces some of the best wine in the world but never actually buys Australian wine, I thoroughly enjoyed watching the excellent ‘Chateau Chunder: When Australian Wine Changed the World’ on BBC4 last week. Having been bitten by drinking nasty Chardonnay in vast quantities in my early 20’s, it’s about time someone reminded me what I’ve been missing.

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Filed under Australia, Eating/ Drinking In, Grape Varieties, Wine Tasting

Eton Waffles

Etonians and common locals, 1937

So here I sit once more on a Friday lunchtime with the kids napping. There’s no wine to taste yet this week but I have every intention of popping out somewhere this afternoon to pick up some Malbec. This special trip would not be necessary had it not been for the fact that having despatched my husband on an urgent errand to pick up a bottle or two of a very drinkable Cahors that I tried last week, the merchant that I’d bought it from was shut.

I can only imagine this is because presumably at 4pm on a Thursday in October, there’s rather a lull in tourist trade for the Eton Bridge Wine Company, let alone that a local resident might pop by to make a purchase.

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Filed under Eating/ Drinking In, France, Grape Varieties, Uncategorized, Wine Tasting