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Midweek drinking thread (9th to 13th August 2021)

Winding down our holiday - this morning we went for ready-to-travel PCR tests at the local medical lab. They were very apologetic that it would cost €44, and we wouldn’t get the results until the afternoon. Service that we can only dream of in the UK.

We’ve been to a final couple of producers in the last couple of days.

  • Yesterday, a quick visit to Christian Barthel in Albé. A small producer who’s very local to us, and does a super range of inexpensive pinot noirs, both with and without oak. We ended up buying some lightly oaked Vieilles Vignes, a couple of unoaked cuvées , and an excellent quaffing rosé crémant.
  • Today, Domaine Hering in Barr, on @JayKay’s recommendation. We very much enjoyed their wines, so thanks, Joy. They’re mid-range prices, but with a lightness of touch that I’d associate with something more expensive. Among others, they make wines from a couple of interesting vineyards that are surrounded by houses within the town itself, and some nicely fine-boned wine from the Grand Cru Kirchberg de Barr. And also a couple of good blends - one a field blend, and the other an assemblage. Which brings me on to dinner.

We’re making the most of some warm evenings, with yet more brochettes from the butcher, and Domaine Hering “Pluriels”, an assemblage of riesling, muscat, pinot gris and sylvaner.

The muscat is what hits you on the nose, but there’s lime there too, and maybe some green apples. Really refreshing and dry, and a perfect hot weather wine, with a citrus bite lifted by some lovely floral notes.

Oh, and our daughter told me say that she rates it as her favourite label of the trip:

One more day, then back home on Saturday…


But perhaps more importantly, which college?!

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Murray Edwards (formerly New Hall). She’ll be doing classical music. The highlight for me is that every music student gets a piano in their halls room :grinning: the winter evenings must just fly by… :musical_keyboard:


Brick House Select Pinot Noir 2018 tonight and surprise surprise it’s lovely. Light and dancing. Red fruit, tight acidity.
First visit to the local pub tonight, in the garden on our own, but a start of sorts.


I love that wine!

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Love it? I think I do too perhaps too much. With Deb in bed with a chest infection (non covid) there’s nothing to stop me finishing it!

Yes - it’s just so drinkable. I’m not saying it’s one of the “best” wines I have, but certainly one of the most irresistable :wink:

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Tonight a bottle of Gigondas Domaine Raspail-Ay 2016. Very acceptable with roast venison haunch with a chocolate/cayenne/breadcrumbs and thyme crust, mashed yams and greens. Later some Camembert (on its own, no biscuits). A good match between the wine and food. Afterwards we watched Meet me in St Louis - perhaps not Garland’s best performance.


Yes, nothing else to do of a winter’s evening in Cambridge…

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Monday I made puttenesca sauce for penne,

with which we had mixed salad (with homegrown tomatoes) and no-brainer™

2019 Casa Vinicola Roxan The Wine Society’s Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (Italy, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo)

Tuesday I made ratatouille (onions, courgettes, peppers, aubergine, garlic, tomatoes) which we had with a hot baguette and

2017 Lâchez-Vous Grenache - Syrah (France)

This is a Vin de France because it has taken advantage of the change in French regulations allowing grapes to be sourced from anywhere in France - to compete with similarly widely sourced wines in the new world. The name Lachez Voux means (according to the back label) ‘cut loose’ and the front label depicts a worker cutting through bureaucratic red tape. This is the wine I mentioned in another thread that says it is
Great with pretty much everything… except fish.
It’s awful with fish.

Wednesday after an overnight soaking, I used cannelloni and butter beans to make Greek-style slow-cooked beans with a mixed salad. I also made a small loaf from a mix of granary and wholemeal flour to tear off chunks, warm from the oven, with the beans. And of course

N.V. Greek Wine Cellars (D. Kourtakis) Retsina of Attica (Greece, Attica)

Thursday I used flambeed diced chicken, onions, tomatoes, and some secret ingredients to make a sort of cassoulet with the remainder of the beans, adding chopped celery shortly before serving so it still kept its crunch, and opened

2018 Kanonkop Kadette Cape Blend (South Africa, Stellenbosch)

A delicious blend of 37% Pinotage, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot.

And another weekend. We’ll be eating out on Saturday and Sunday so no cooking duties for me, but probably we won’t be enjoying as good wines as at home.)

(Montepulciano from TWS, Retsina from Morrisons, Cape Blend from Tesco, Grenache-Syrah was a raffle wine at our wine club, but it’s available at Majestic)


Opened this a couple of nights ago:

To be honest I’m rather disappointed; a bit thin and acidic. A little better on the second night but still not brilliant. Hoping it’s just a dodgy bottle which is always possible with a bottle of this age though there is nothing obviously faulty. I have two more so fingers crossed for them.


This week was Baby Bandito time! 10-day skin maceration. By the folks at Testalonga (Kloof).


Hi Mike - from personal experience I’d say you’ve been unlucky. I’ve had a couple of these this year and both were memorably great. Edits from my notes:

Remarkably youthful, lots of oak at first, but after 30mins showing black fruit and classic rioja leather, tobacco and spice. Continued to open up and improve over the following 4hrs.

Thin is not a word that features.

A post was merged into an existing topic: Weekend drinking thread 13th to 15th August 21

Yes I’m thinking/hoping you’re right. To be fair it has improved over the three nights and most of the excess acidity is now gone. But it certainly wasn’t what I expect from a Rioja. Still drinkable so it hasn’t gone down the sink or invoked The Promise! :smiley:

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Have you considered running tours? I think I’d pay you to take me on holiday to Alsace!


Have to agree on the Ksara. Sage is spot on. What a surprisingly enjoyable wine and only £11

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Running tours sounds far too much like hard work :rofl:

However, we normally get there five or six times each year, and if any Community members happen to be there at the same time, it would great to meet up. All being well (a risky statement, obviously), we should next be there during the week of 23-30 October.


Ah! interesting! We were thinking of being there late October too…! But no firm plans yet (have a Eurostar voucher from 18 months ago, which we have to use by December). If it happens, might be nice to meet! :smiley:


If we’re there at the same time, we should definitely do it :smiley: