Friday, August 20, 2010

Get yourself some glasses!

If you are into music, it is worthwhile spending money on decent speakers. If you are into cars, you can appreciate the value in a good set of wheels. So it is with wine glasses. If you like and appreciate wine, it is worth investing in decent glasses. Good wine glasses can improve the drinking experience immeasurably. There are none finer than Riedel, who make several ranges of glasses, designed specifically for different wine styles.
I was a sceptic of the efficacy of Riedel glasses until we did a taste test, trying different wines in normal wine glasses versus their Riedel equivalents. There difference was startling. If you try a Chardonnay in a paris goblet versus a Riedel Chardonnay glass, you would expect the Riedel to perform better. But even a chardonnay in a Chardonnay Glass versus a Sauvignon Blanc glass made a huge difference. I have been a Riedel convert ever since and rarely use anything else.
If you want to see what the fuss is for yourself, there is a tasting by Maximilian Riedel himself, no less, on in the brand new Convention Centre on Friday, September 17th. For information, contact Jean Smullen at

Monday, August 16, 2010

This is gonna be great - don't miss it!

The irrepressible Jane Ferrari, Yalumba's global wine ambassador is back in Dublin next month and we are delighted to host another dinner to celebrate the wines of Yalumba on Tuesday, September 7th in Jaipur, Dalkey.

We have stocked Yalumba wines since we opened over 11 years ago and I still rate them as some of the best Australian wines on the market. They have a number of different ranges at various different price levels and they all over deliver in terms of bang for buck. As well as, the expected Shiraz, Chardonnay etc, they also make some amazing Viogniers, classy Rieslings and the quality when you get up to the level of Menzies Cabernet and (my favourite) The Signature is really world-class.

Jane Ferrari is one of the best speakers I have ever seen in a wine context. She effortlessly combines a huge depth of wine knowledge with brilliant anecdotes, one-liners and off the cuff quips, making for a hugely entertaining and informative night.

Did I mention we are doing it in Jaipur? So the food will be brilliant as well.

So, World Class wines, brilliant speaker, the best Indian food in the us on 01 2353054 to book your place. Tickets are €50 per person to cover everything for the night.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Thinking about Bordeaux

I have been thinking about Bordeaux a lot recently. I am a fan of its wines, I think that they can be some of the best wines you can get, when they are good. It is, of course, a bit of a minefield. They can be weedy, green and unpleasant at the lower end, and then it climbs a graph of price and quality until the prices just become out of reach for the average Joe.

So, there exists, I believe, an area where Bordeaux delivers not only an excellent wine experience, but also good value for money. The problem is, where does it lie - €10 - €30? €15-€40? €25-€60.

Anyone on for a tasting to find out?

Monday, August 9, 2010

Good deals for August


New Wines and Special Offers

Focussing on New World wines for a change….

Alamos Malbec – RRP €12.99 - now €9.99
Arguably Argentina’s best producer, Catena offers excellent value at every level of their extensive range. The Alamos Malbec is a fine example of Argentina’s best known grape variety with chunky dark fruit, soft tannins and a smooth finish. Excellent at this price.
Hellfire Bay Chardonnay – Western Australia – RRP €11.99 now €9.99
Easy-drinking wine from superstar producer Plantagenet, this is a soft, round fruity wine with just a touch of oak, very nice wine.

Innocent Bystander Shiraz – RRP €16.99 now €14.99
The guy on the label looks highly suspicious if you ask me, but this is a rich, lush Oz Shiraz, soft, full bodied and spicy; you won’t be disappointed.

La Motte Sauvignon Blanc, South Africa – RRP €11.99 now €9.99
This is classy stuff from top Franschoek producer La Motte, Crisp, fresh, grassy flavours – nicely aromatic and balanced.
New Wines

The Bogle range from California fills a gap that we have always had a problem with – namely the decent mid-range Californian. You can get cheap and nasty industrial swill and you can get outrageously expensive good stuff, but a decent bottle at €15 has been elusive. No more! With Old Vine Zin, Cabernet, Pinot, Chardonnay and even a delicious Chenin Blanc, this is a range worth looking at.
Portugal Promotion – Win a trip to Alentejo

Buy a bottle of Alentejo wine and you could be in with a chance to win a trip to this amazing wine region. We will have the wines on tasting next weekend – August 13th-15th, so you can try the wines and enter the competition.

Wine dinner coming up in September – details to follow….