Friday, July 17, 2015

Rosé with Cojones

I got soaked playing football last night, properly soaked, wringing water from my jersey, squelchy boots, the whole thing. So I have officially given up on summer, but I haven't given up on Rosé just yet.

Rosé comes in many different guises - we can draw a veil over the style that probably sell the most - sweetish pink wines that might even have the word "blush" on the label. I'm blushing just thinking about it.

The we have the Southern French Rosés in various guises which probably hit their peak in Provence - usually dry, pale in colour, quite delicious and easy to drink. That said, they are sometimes too delicate when they meet the food that results from your average Irish BBQ - burgers, sausages, chicken wings - not the most elegant food at the best of times, but when grilled to various levels of incineration as is usually the case, you really need a wine (or beer) that will stand up and be counted.

Spanish Rosados are usually made from Garnacha (Grenache) and are usually higher in colour, higher in alcohol and more robust.

Arzuaga, sandwiched as they are in between Pingus and Vega Sicilia are rightly renowned as being one of the leading producers of Ribera del Duero, and their wines are full on- fruit and oak are usually equally matched but nevertheless are quite extrovert in their style. On a visit earlier in the year, I was curious to try their Rosado, made from Tempranillo, not Grenache.

This is a full-on Rosé, light in colour, but medium bodied and with loads of lovely summer fruits, concentrated enough to take on pretty much any food you care to throw its way. The elegant bottle, printed to avoid the label coming off in the ice bucket, might make you think this is a gentle, feminine wine, but don't be fooled, this is a Rosé with cojones!

(It's also an excellent hangover cure, as I discovered after a night of over-indulgence in Arzuaga's amazing hotel the previous night!)


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Price 'em up to knock 'em down

The above is a very nice Montepulciano d'Abruzzo from a producer called Zaccagnini - it is a wine that we have carried pretty much since we started up - it is a very pleasant, juicy mid-priced Montepulciano, fair value for its price which used to be sub €15, now you will find it in many independents priced around €17-18 after the duty increases in recent budgets. We call it "Twiggy" because of the little stick tied on to the front.

Still, at €17.95 I think it represents reasonable value for money.

Then I see it in Supervalu on promotion at €15 - I don't particularly mind this as we occasionally get undercut by retailers with bigger purchasing power than us and we try to respond as best we can if this happens. However, what surprised me was that it was on promotion as reduced from €23 down to €15!

This is a wine which was never €23 and for Supervalu to try and portray this as a 35% discount when it is clearly a (max) 16% discount is, in my view a blatant attempt to swindle consumers.

This is an issue which I think should be tackled with more vigour by our wine writers but perhaps they shy away from it given that the main culprits also happen to be major newspaper advertisers....

There is a consumer story here that, if it was on bread or milk, would be a major scandal, but wine apparently is fair game for this kind of malpractice.

Anyway, Twiggy, now only €15! Reduced from €18.....

Friday, March 20, 2015

Sweet 16

We are 16 years old this week, so we are offering 20% of all wine this weekend (Friday and Saturday) if you buy 6 bottles or more.


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Grand stretch in the evenings

Happy Thursday

Due to popular demand, we will be back open till 8.30pm now on Thursdays (as well as Friday & Saturday) - our €5 corkage deal is now available EVERY DAY!

Next Wine Event

A date for you Diary - Friday, March 6th - we will have our friends from Villa Locatelli / Angoris in beautiful Friuli over early March and we will be hosting a wine dinner in Fitzpatricks Killiney Castle on the date at 7.30pm - we will have a sparkling wine reception and the taste 4 wines with a matching menu from the team in Fitzpatricks - all for €45. Book your place with Carol as usual on 01 2353054 and we will have more info closer to the time.

Wine Deal for the next few weeks

Also from Friuli, Pradio are lovely wines and we have their Sauvignon Blanc and Refosco on a 2 for €30 deal at the moment - a saving of €3 per bottle. They will be open over the weekend if you want to try them.


Friday, January 23, 2015

Wine Dinner in Beaufield Mews - February 6th

Ok, January is nearly over so we feel in need of a decent Wine Dinner and where better to start than with 2 of our favourite places - Bordeaux and Beaufield Mews.

We have Lionel Latorse from Vignobles Latorse coming over to guide us through a range of wines from AC Bordeaux Sec through to Saint Emilion Grand Cru and we will match it with some classic dishes in the warm and elegant surrounds of Beaufield Mews.

It all kicks off on Friday, February 6th at 7.30pm with a drinks reception and will follow with a delicious 3 course dinner with wines to match.

The cost for all your food and wine is €50 per person.

We hope you can join us for what will be a special evening.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Why Leo Varadkar shocked me yesterday

After hearing about Leo Varadkar coming out on the radio yesterday (I think we all knew didn't we?....good-looking man, no sign of a girlfriend etc etc...) I had a look on his twitterfeed to see he was proudly proclaiming that he is "on the dry" for January as part of the campaign by the Irish Heart Foundation.

I know they mean well and I believe the Irish Heart Foundation do great work (I have a family history that makes me think I might need their support at some stage). I also know that Minister Varadkar has to come out and support these initiatives, but I think it misses the point on a few fronts.

Firstly, what we should all aspire to is a sensible and healthy approach to alcohol in our society. Binging at Christmas and fasting in January is neither healthy nor sensible - it is the alcohol equivalent of yo-yo dieting. It will do nothing except reinforce bad habits. Whatever happened to moderation?

Secondly, giving up wine at any time of year is clearly a bad idea as the health benefits of wine consumption in moderation are well documented at this stage, but January is a particularly bad month to try and give up. It is a month when you need warmth and comfort - big casseroles and a glass of red by the fire. It is too cold and miserable to even contemplate water with your dinner.

Lastly, January is grim enough for us wine merchants with those ridiculous new years resolutions without having some officially sanctioned campaign to give it up altogether! Drink less, but drink better - that's what I say - all year round!

Now, where did I put my runners.....

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Annual Wine Fair next Thursday and John Wilson tomorrow

Annual Wine Fair - Thursday November 13th


So, just a quick reminder about our 16th (!) Annual Wine Fair next week in Fitzpatricks Killiney Castle from 6-9pm. Carol and myself have been putting together a great list of nearly 100 wines for you to taste. We have a LOT of new stuff in this year, so it will be a great night. If you choose to put in an order, you will avail of some great prices on the night. Ticket are €10 but call in to the shop and speak nicely to Carol and I'm sure she will look after you. Hope to see you next Thursday!

Last Call for Rentacrowd!
John Wilson (Irish Times wine writer) is launching his new book tomorrow (Friday 7th) evening at 5.30pm in the shop. Please call in, we will be sampling a few of his recommendations and he will be signing copies...what better way to start the weekend?

See you soon,