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Ice wine….

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Ice wineOn a balmy day in London like today wines like these don’t seem like such a silly idea after all…..

Launched 3 years ago Moët & Chandon’s Ice Imperial is back and now it’s in Selfridges. A blend created for a new champagne experience it’s designed to be served with ice to encourage consumers to be more casual with Champagne “… to create a different mood”. It’s a more concentrated blend that shouldn’t be drunk straight up.

Serving suggestion: Take 3 cubes of ice in a bowl shaped wine glass, a few mint leaves, fresh raspberries and some orange rind. Sit back and think of St Tropez. Selfridges, £54.99

They say imitation is the highest form of flattery and JP Chenet’s Ice Edition is as good a copycat as any with the exception of the liquid in the bottle, of course. But the price is undeniably chilled, so what would you expect? Available at Asda for £9.99, I just found it online reduced to a cool £6.00. If you’re going to water wine down wine in any way, may as well make it the price!


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All that sparkles may not be gold….

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

ortrugo_framed_smProsecco: like an overgrown garden riddled with ivy, is everywhere. Everyone wants it, everyone is selling it but it’s caught what I call Pinot Grigio syndrome: an affliction that affects the cost of a bottle but not the quality.

Remember when Pinot Grigio was the cheapest white in the bar? And Prosecco the cheapest sparkling? Well, they too often taste as such but have a look next time you’re out and about, I bet you’re paying third or forth position prices on the wine list, si? The prices won’t come down, of course, but my gut and my purse tells me that given time all that sparkles may not just be Prosecco.

If you’re wondering what to turn to for a thoughtful alternative then stay in Italy, in the Emilia Romagna region to be precise, and look no further than Bonelli’s Ortrugo 2013, a frizzante style of fruity, summery, elderflowery goodness. At £12.95 from Park & Bridge you’d do well to grab a bottle and drink to the future of Italian sparkling wine. 

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Come on England!!

Friday, June 20th, 2014

Camel Valley vineyardThe World Cup is responsible for a lot of things lately; nervous excitement as we all grip to the thread of hope that England are still in; sleepless nights as Mr Bouquet stays up watching each and every game and a rise in the sale of all things Brazilian…. including wine.

Rather astonishing the UK is now the number one export market for Brazilian wines which considering we’re also in the game to win it makes me think that wine importers and retailers have got this a bit wrong. Pushing Brazilian wine while England are still in with a chance seems a little traitorous. Surely at moments of patriotism like this it’ll be sales of English wines that sore?


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Rich in gold….

Thursday, June 5th, 2014

Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir layeredLast week’s Sunday Times Style supplement was dripping in intriguing features on the über rich. Assuming their money could be used to buy some of the world’s finest wines, I wondered what this super-class would pull from the wine rack for a Monday night in on the sofa. With jealousy to one side surely even the keenest of winos with the rosiest of noses couldn’t stomach Burgundy 1er Cru and First Growth Bordeaux every night?

After some consideration I would like to think they might crack the screwcap on ………

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Vinalogy, wine basics with a twist….

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

vinalogy“If Miss Bouquet were a wine she’d be a Côte-Rotie. A delicious blend of two very different grapes, she exudes the complexity and grace of the finest Syrah softened up around the edges by a splash of golden, curvaceous Viognier. The blonde and the brunette. Perfume and silk. Delicious.”

This was the diagnosis given to me by the lovely Winebird at her book launch earlier this month. ………

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Friday, May 23rd, 2014

London Wine WeekLondon Wine WeekWith Sauvignon Blanc Day behind us and Chardonnay Day in the throws of excitement as I type, we’re about to embark on the ultimate excuse to celebrate wine, and this time it’s for a whole week. Those clever people at London Cocktail Week that inspired our capital city to dust off their novelty cocktail shakers and mix, taste and drink their way around London have turned their hands to wine. And not before time, the inaugural London Wine Week is fast approaching and if you ask me it’s exactly what London’s wine scene has been waiting for. ………

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