This week I’ve managed to be in both Chile and Argentina so it was a toss-up which should provide the wine of the week . . .
As I’m off to New Zealand in January I’m trying to get up to speed with what’s going on over there so I leapt at the opportunity to attend a vertical from one of Marlborough’s leading producers Dog Point.
I’ve long been an admirer of Compass Box whisky who were one of the first blenders to create and package sophisticated modern ‘artisan’ whiskies as they like to describe them.
The mere idea of sprout juice may be enough to send the sprout-haters among you running for cover but I have to say I think Marks & Spencer is onto a winner here.
I’ve lost track of the number of times my wine of the week has been a pinot noir but hell, I’ve been in Burgundy this week so what else could I recommend?
I’ve a soft spot for the Faugères wine region which is just up the road from our house in the Languedoc. It’s a beautiful wild hilly area on the foothills of the coastal range which produces some lovely warm spicy reds.
The idea of making wine in London from grapes grown in France and Italy sounds a bit of a crazy one but London Cru’s first vintage is an impressive debut.
I don’t often get the chance to taste wines from the northern supermarket chain Booth’s but fell hook, line and sinker for this gorgeous Spanish white they served at their pre-Christmas lunch this week.
This week’s Wine Society tasting was, as always, impressive but there’s one wine I’d urge you to buy now, despite the £16 price tag, as I suspect there isn't much of it.
If you like the style of super-Tuscans but find the prices a bit steep the Tenuta Monteti wines, which are stocked by London merchant Lea & Sandeman, are for you.
If you dread pronouncing wine names and steer away from flute shaped bottles you may want to give this wine a wide berth if you see it on the shelf but put your prejudices aside - it’s well worth a try.
Only a merchant with a pedigree like Berry Bros & Rudd could consider an £8.45 bottle a ‘house wine’ but if your usual fare is classed growth claret I guess it is.
With its own university brewing department (at Heriot Watt) Edinburgh is very much a beer-drinking city so it seems appropriate after spending a few days there this week that my drink of the week should be a beer
I love old-fashioned French aperitifs but the name of this Provençal one makes it doubly irresistible. And the peach flavour makes it perfect for this time of year.
This week has been all about dipping into bottles in the cellar in our house in France. Well, not strictly the cellar - more like the cupboard under the stairs. It’s not ideal wine storage - it’s a bit too warm in the Languedoc - but it stays cooler than the rest of the house.
The idea of a Czech-style lager made by a very traditional-sounding British brewery may sound bizarre but this is one of the best lagers - if not the best - I’ve tasted in the UK.
If you’ve ever been to the great Pitt Cue Co in Newburgh Street, Soho you may well have had a drink called a pickleback - a bourbon washed down with a chaser of homemade pickle juice.
In general I use the drink of the week slot to feature a wine - or other drink - that’s really impressed me but occasionally it’s all about the right wine for the moment.
I couldn’t make up which of these terrific wines to recommend from yesterday’s London Wine Sessions so I’m going for both.