The Dragon of the South

I know this is Lincolnshire, but are there some Welsh people within earshot? And Argentines for that matter? I knew that a number of Welsh settled in Argentina in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, also that Patagonia (the region in which they settled) is now a source of quality wine. So might we see one day an Argentine wine with the Welsh dragon on its label? It would be one of the most southerly vineyards in the world. Just maybe. With climate change upon us, who knows?

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A Hop Over To The Beers

Whether it’s wine, beer or cider, if I try something new, the easiest question to ask myself is once tasted would I buy another one?

In the case of Brooklyn Special Effects Hoppy Lager (“alcohol free”), the answer is yes. It tastes good with a burger meal and delivers a slightly sweet touch on the finish. Available at Waitrose & Partners.

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A German Muscadet?

It was a modest meal-fishfingers to be precise. Ann and I tried out a wine from the new Waitrose W Range, Elbling by name, a product of the Mosel region. Light, refreshing, dry – who wants heavy in mid-Summer?


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Italian wine twins!

You will see the word Maree on both labels. One is a summery white from the Fiano grape, the other a characterful red from the Nero di Troia. Both available at reasonable prices from Waitrose. Thoroughly recommended. See you among the wines!

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I’ve waited a long time for this one

Recently at an independent wine merchant in Stamford I discovered some Moldovan wine. It is not unknown in the UK, but the quality of the still red I bought exceeds anything of that style I have tasted before from this wine country. Excellent sparkling wine I knew about, but not Rara Neagra, supported by Merlot and Syrah in an impressive blend. Chateau Vartely is the wine’s name, and it costs under £10.

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A bit of old Peterborough

The Cherry House Restaurant Werrington – old,quaint and charming. Good food, excellent service and super wines from a reasonably priced list. Viognier from South Africa, Tannat from Uruguay and Sweet Sauvignon Blanc from Chile: not the usual suspects certainly! And most welcome for that.

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When the smoke has drifted away

As the steaks smoked and spat under the grill, I quickly shut a door to stop the alarm going off and then waited. Along came this tasty dish of jacket potato, ratatouille and my aforementioned steak to which I just added a dash of wholegrain mustard. Washed down by a rich and fruity Primitivo di Manduria (available locally). Stamford in the sunshine!

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No slurps, but some food for thought

I liked the look of a couple of food and wine matches in Matthew Jukes’ recent “100 Best Value Summer White & Rose Wines”, Daily Mail.  The ones catching my eye were Quinta de Azevedo 2013, a Vinho Verde from Waitrose recommended with barbecued sardines, and a suggested pairing of Hahn Chardonnay 2011 (Waitrose) with roast pork. Although I have yet to put them all to the test, they just sound right!

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Portugal, Madeira, Stamford – but mainly Stamford!

And so to Candlesticks. This is a Portuguese restaurant tucked away in a quiet corner of Stamford. Very tasty food served, as you might expect, in a candlelit ambience. We chose a plummy Dao to go with lamb and pork dishes. Dao can be a little austere, but certainly not this one. And we learned a bit about Madeira too, from a charming member of staff.

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A few rare birds from Uruguay

Last night I gave a Uruguayan Wine Tasting at Rustic Wine Bar in Market Deeping. Lovely wines all of them, mostly from Wines of Uruguay but also one from Waitrose. Uruguay means “river of birds”. I am so glad these few have flown the nest and are available in the UK!

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