Continuing our journey of meeting as many of the members as possible, today we meet a member who joined in November but has already become a very active participant in many different conversations, has shared some wonderful wine humour and, it turns out, can face down an 18-wheeler truck to keep hold of her Champagne
Meet the Member: @JayKay
As usual, we ask a short set of standard questions, and get each interviewee to answer some ‘fun’ questions that give us an insight into them particularly.
I’d love to hear from all of you at some point, and I will be in touch, but if you have a burning desire to introduce yourself, please send me a message to let me know.
Don’t forget to leave a comment at the end as it is always nice for the member who is willing to be open like this to know that others are reading their interviews.
Tell us very briefly about yourself, and what fills your average day
I turned 60 last September and took early retirement from a job at Southampton University about three years ago. To celebrate my retirement we took a long road trip taking in the Mosel, Alsace, Lake Garda and Pouilly sur Loire. In order to burn the empty wine calories our daily routine includes exercise classes, mainly indoor cycling, and gardening. It also involves some volunteering with a local charity, visiting lonely elderly people for a hour to give them some company. We enjoy the occasional MOOC (free online courses) and I practice my hobby (see below).
How long have you been a member of The Wine Society and what made you join?
I’ve been a member since December 1993. My parents gave me and my husband membership as a Christmas present that year. We’d already started to explore different wines with a local independent Wine shop and had joined a wine tasting group set up by a local wine expert my parents knew. So it was a great progression. One of the best presents we’ve ever received!
What would you say is your favourite wine style or region, and what do you pair it with?
This is very difficult as I love so many different styles and colours of wine! If absolutely forced to choose then judging by our “cellar” (a small pantry with no windows or source of heat) then it would have to be mature left bank red claret. We don’t eat a lot of lamb but there is a fantastic Delia Smith recipe for lamb and flageolet beans that is a great match, and for my 60th the pairing was lamb shank with 2004s of Pavillon Rouge and Alter Ego, both second wines.
If you had to list your major NON WINE-RELATED hobby, what would that be?
I started to learn the saxophone about nine years ago and I now play in a couple of local amateur groups. I wish I had started to learn earlier because I really enjoy everything about the sax: the sound it makes (yes even me!), the music making with likeminded people, the social aspect. All good fun. It has helped me to explore jazz music which I had previously not really listened to.
What was the last gift that you gave someone (that YOU chose and bought)?
I bought my mum a chicken made of metal for her garden. She lives next door to an egg farm so it seemed appropriate and she loves it.
Tell us something that you’ve done that you are pretty sure no-one else in the community has done (yet)?
We were in a car crash while on holiday near San Diego some years ago, wiped out by a large truck. Amazingly we survived with only minor injuries and the two bottles of Dom Perignon rose champagne in the boot had survived intact when we went to the wreck yard to reclaim them the following day!
Your house is on fire – which bottle would you save from the burning building?
(no cheating - this must be a bottle in your possession at the moment)
Our one remaining bottle of 1990 Chateau Leoville Barton, last of an EP case.
If you had a £100,000 cheque to give away to an organisation, who would you give it to, and why?
I’d give it to a charity called Reprieve that campaigns against the death penalty and represents victims of miscarriages of justice on death rows around the world plus those still incarcerated without charge in Guantanamo Bay. Getting justice (as opposed to state sponsored murder) should be a fundamental human right.