Weekday drinking 15 - 18 Aug 2022

I always feel a bit nervous if it’s relatively late on a Monday and no one has started… Is all well in the world?

Anyway after another visit to Waitrose for a few basics I’ve finally realised that what they have done is build the floor on a barely perceptible but nevertheless effective slope so that my trolley inexorably drifts towards the wine corner. All those months when I thought it was just weak will!

So, a bottle of Errazuriz Alconcagua 2020 SB, a wine which is okay, but honestly not especially worth buying except under the influence of gravity and a discount. It has, as it says, a good bit of passion fruit, but I’d also say a strong influence of slightly chalky gooseberry. It’s fairly pleasant, clean, and fresh to drink, but is rather acidic - marginally too acidic for me for real enjoyment.



A mini road trip to Slovenia and Austria saw us overnight in Graz yesterday. A delightful city, can recommend for a short stay. For dinner we had wonderful Styrian food at the Altsteirische Schmankerkstube with a glass of Blaufrankisch and a glass of white Spatlese (not sure of the grape but not Riesling). Both extremely moreish.

A little digging reveals the Blaufrankisch is from the Pittnauer winery whose wares TWS also stocks.


My daughtet, who is currently inter-railing in Europe, has made Graz her next stop (she’s currently in Budapest). Great to hear your recommendation! :+1: :slightly_smiling_face:


Last few days of holiday in Lorraine, we have imported a few bottles from Savoie of which this is one.

Perfect for another wam summer evening, this Jacquere. Lovely floral and citrus aromas, together with something else a bit more, I hesitate to say, mineral!. Citrus flavours and really overwhelmingly fresh tasting.

Happy Tuesday…



Don’t be afraid to try pumpkin seed oil in deserts.

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Excuse the unattractive marinating rack of lamb in the background… looking forward to these. Happy Tuesday (which for us is also “Happy Wedding Anniversary” and “Happy-nobody-here-has-COVID-anymore day”. Arguable which is the main cause of celebration.). Criminally early to drink the Dalamara but wanted to give it a try.


Congrats! Great line up to celebrate.
The Dalamara is absolutely fantastic!
Make sure to decant


Being a wet and later a thundery day, cooler also, we opted for this which might have been a tad early for drinking but anyway it was delicious, very smooth but a rich and well developed finish. Big wine and at 15% was not overpowering . Integrated tannins and a big hit of dark fruit. :+1::+1:

Worked perfectly with the stormy evening and confit du canard.


Another one of these for us [me] this evening - the 2017 Château Rouquette La Clape Cuvée Arpège. Bourboulenc with some Roussanne; not sure of the precise ratio.

Lovely nose again, with that generous blossomy almondy fruit. Seemed particularly almondy on first dibs this evening, though that could be the hot humid no-rain-yet weather round here accentuating smells.

Nicely dense again too, and went very harmoniously with a big thick loin of cod “pan-fried” [how can one fry something except in a pan??!] in olive oil with a good dollop of butter & some capers with a big squeeze of fresh yuzu from one of our yuzu trees we keep in the garden. Managed to keep the herby aspect to the wine focused and avoid the lovely rich fruit coming on too strong. Very very nice. Though I’d say probably more of a winter-white than a summer-white. I did almost open an Assyrtiko instead but felt it a bit extravagant for a Tuesday :~}


I used to be quite bothered by this too until I realised that many people have deep fat fryers and also increasingly air fryers. In commercial environments I think it’s mainly deep fat fryers that are the alternative to “pan frying”.


Should be in last week’s thread but posting vague thoughts and memories of some of last week’s wines on holiday. Some purchased en route, some locally (Sarlat in the Dordogne) and some brought with us).

Left to right.
Local Malbec / Cahors - juicy and fairly light (13%), delightful cool. Great bargain around €8. Kompsos Liatiko - again chilled to cope with 35°+ weather and very nice too. Light and fragrant but with some grip to handle most food.
Chiara Condello Predappio (Sangiovese) 2016 & 2019 - bit of a comparison to see how the vintages compare at the moment. I couldn’t find my last bottle of 2017 in the cabinet, unfortunately. With grilled steak. Both reward food, plenty of grip. 2016 showing signs of development, 2019 still very much on the fruit. Both very tasty, for different reasons.
Aurelien Revillot Bourgueil ‘Sur Les Hauts’ 2019 - we drank 3 of these over the week. First two excellent but 3rd was corked. Modern style Bourgueil - fresh and racy, full of energy. Red fruit and lively acidity.

Rosé bought locally from the fridge as we needed more cold wines. Nice but not especially memorable. Served its purpose.
Cossart Gordon Malmsey Madeira Colheita 1994. Delicious. Served after a long meal with lots of wine. Some of the sugar turned to dryness (perceived??). Complex. Long
Skiants - Aleatico from Marche - made in the style of a Burgundy - soft and perfumed but with a definite Italian fruit profile, hello cherry
Prunotto Barbaresco 2017 - on the lighter end of Barbaresco. Very fragrant. Enjoyed with roast chicken.
More locally sourced Malbec, fresh style of Cahors again, 13%. Ok, but preferred the other one.
Locally sourced white Corbieres. Think white Rhone style. Quite fragrant and low acidity. This got mostly quaffed in the kitchen while I was manning BBQ so my recollections are both scant and vague on this one.

More locally-sourced cold rosé. This one from Provence (now I remember, the other one was darker and a little more gumph). Typical Provence rosé. Light and dry. Nice with sun, disappeared quickly.
Alpha Zeta rosé - Sangiovese from TWS. IMO easily equal to the Provence rose and half the price. A bloody bargain.
Pietradolce Etna Rosso - yum! Silky texture, slightly smoky, delicious red fruit.
Giocosa Roero Arneis - delicious and balanced. Texture, acidity and fruit.
Maximin Grunhaus Abtsberg Kabinett 2018. Maybe just too hot outside but I was excepting more acidity. Pleasurable, just not as much pleasure as I wanted.

Domaine de La Pepiere Muscadet Monnieres Saint-Fiacre - picked up by a friend on the way down to the holiday house. Absolutely delicious, so much going on - enjoyed with a mountain of prawns and mayo.
Triennes rosé in magnum. Unmissable at €22 per magnum. Tasty and thirst-quenching.


And I am quite exercised by the term ‘loin’ as applied to fish.


Just think of it as a slightly biblical way of referring to cod thigh! You know, the upper leg of a cod.


Last night I opened a bottle of Château Moulin du Bourg, Listrac-Médoc 2012

And very nice it is too! I bought three of these back in 2017 and had a couple that same year, two years after the opening window date. My notes were ‘smooth but nothing special.’ This is my last bottle which is one year away from the TWS closing window date. Now we know these dates are typically a little conservative and sure enough I’d say this is still good for a year or two yet but right now it is singing, way better than those two in '17! It’s smooth and integrated, some fruit still there with cigar box and leather but mainly a lovely simple glass of mature Bordeaux. I mean it’s no Ch Palmer but it has aged remarkably well for the £11.75 I paid for it and is now standing out as excellent value for money!



Back after a few days in the Marais Poitiven ( willow trees ago-go)and decided on this Ottolenghi Sardines stuffed with bulgar, barberries and pistachios. As per normal fiddly but worth it as per normal! he really is a wiz! With a dressed green salad ( mustard, lemon and honey) we thoroughly enjoyed his dish and I sardines, which is probably a first! Berne Provençal white to accompany it, enough acidity to cut through the oily fish and spices without destroying the wines sweet core from the Rolle, Semillon and Uni blanc ensemble. Pretty we’d say, but enough for food of this med/middle eastern flavour.


Exquisite !


Now here’s a first: Ilha do Pico ‘Frei Gigante’, Azores 2018, as part of a ‘Mystery Fine Wines’ case from TWS (around £26 elsewhere - and long gone from TWS lists if it ever even existed).

From the Azores !!!

Even the grapes are far from everyday: Arinto, Terrantez, Verdelho

In the glass: pale yellow (Gr cru Chablis?) - nose is fabulous: almonds, garrigue, saline, oregano? the palate just gets better: same weight as a high end Chablis and very similar in style but without the flab. There is green grape acidity, but it doesn’t get in the way - smokey struck flint even?

I suspect this is a bottle I will never encounter again. Perhaps an email to member’s services tomorrow in case they have any more knocking around?


Loved reading your succinct notes @Brocklehurstj and your admirable powers of recollection too. It sounds like you and yours are having a great time !

Deja vu on my part tonight but both food and wine were such a good match I couldn’t help but post again…

…an Asda ES Rias Baixas Albarino 2021 from Bodegas Pazo Cilleiro ( £ 6.38 on offer ) with Thomasina Miers’ recipe for chargrilled mackerel with a lemony new potato salad ( from The Guardian food pages ).

As for the wine, citrus, green apples, a floral quality, and plenty of saline lees-y freshness on the nose and palate. Excellent typicity and one which tastes like a £10 plus bottle.

The recipe is now a firm, and healthy, midweek favourite. The charred lemon and red chilli that go into the dressing provide a lovely fresh, smoky and gently spicy heat that really complement the other ingredients in the dish. Highly recommended if you’re not adverse to fish bones !