Make Mine A Double

Classy Cava [Make Mine a Double #30]

Cava has an image problem.  The vast majority of bottles sort in the UK and Ireland are mass-produced, by-the-numbers plonk.  Even though it’s made by the more expensive – and generally higher quality – traditional method, Cava is generally seen as being in the same “party-drink” class as Prosecco.  To be honest, neither cheap Prosecco… Continue reading Classy Cava [Make Mine a Double #30]

Information, Opinion

brandinG wiNe

Celebrity wine is not a new thing and it doesn’t show any sign of slowing down.  among the “celebs” with their name attached to a wine are people from sport (golfers Nick Faldo, Ernie Els, Greg Norman…), the music business (Cliff Richard, Madonna, Sting…) and the film industry (Jolie-Pitt, Sam Neill, Francis Ford Coppola). The degree of involvement… Continue reading brandinG wiNe

Uncategorized

The Fifth Element – Part 5

Fizz and friends from the Quintessential Wines tasting earlier this year: Druisan Prosecco Colfondo NV (12.5%, RRP €17.95 at Quintessential Wines, Drogheda & quintessentialwines.ie) A world away from the cheap and (sometimes not so) cheerful industrial Prosecco which is on special offer in the supermarket, this is an entirely different style of fizz.  Whereas the vast… Continue reading The Fifth Element – Part 5

Tasting Events

The Fifth Element – Part 3

A pair of funky “whites” from the Quintessential wines tasting earlier this year:     Pierluigi Zampaglione Don Chisciotte Fiano 2015 (12.5%, RRP €26.95 at Quintessential Wines, Drogheda & quintessentialwines.ie) This actual colour of this wine is why these wines are described as “whites” and not whites – it’s orange, which is a whole new category and… Continue reading The Fifth Element – Part 3

Make Mine A Double, Opinion

Top Selection of Reds [Make Mine a Double #29]

Here are a couple of fab reds from Top Selection, an interesting UK-based boutique wine merchant: Habla de la Tierra Vino de la Tierra de Extremadura 2014 (13.5%, £14 from Top Selection) This is a modern Spanish wine made from a blend of Cab Franc and Tempranillo. Unlike its offspring Cabernet Sauvignon (see here), Cabernet… Continue reading Top Selection of Reds [Make Mine a Double #29]

Tasting Events

Marks and Sparklers

Retailer Marks and Spencer have an excellent wine range, and in line with their aspirational target consumers they aren’t afraid to go up market now and again.  Here are six of Marks and Sparks’ super sparklers: M&S Cava Prestige Brut NV (12.0%, 9.0 g/L, €16.30) This is a blend of two out of the three traditional white… Continue reading Marks and Sparklers

Tasting Events

A Fun Blind Tasting Event

When I was asked to put on a wine tasting event for a birthday party, I asked what format the host wanted and the average level of wine knowledge among the guests. He replied that he was open about the format but that the partygoers would have varying levels of interest and knowledge in wine… Continue reading A Fun Blind Tasting Event

Opinion

A Dozen Valentine’s Treats

Valentine’s Day is associated with romance, and hence the colour pink.  This often means that rosé wines are promoted at this time of year, but as they aren’t generally my thing I thought I would recommend a dozen wines of differing hues from O’Briens, who are offering 10% back on their loyalty card (or wine… Continue reading A Dozen Valentine’s Treats