Wine Of The Week #3 // Domaine Tempier Rose 2013

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This 2013 rose is not to be underestimated, quite literally it is outstanding. Once praised as ‘the best rose in the world’ by the esteemed Robert Parker it does everything right, giving up notions of orange, blossom, mineral water, rose petal and seawater. Crisp and bountiful would be a suitable short description.

It hits the palate with a medium bodied, fresh and focused style and builds with time in the glass and exposure to the air, which brings through additional richness and depth. The wine can stand alone purely through it’s freshness yet would go beautifully with food too, specifically salads, seafood or anti-pasti.

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Beaujolais Day 2014

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It’s that time of year again, the new wine has arrived. Beaujolais Nouveau that is, fresh from La France. Produced from Gamay grapes in the region on it’s namesake this vin de primeur is fermented for just a few weeks before being released year in year, out on the third Thursday of November, which falls on the 20th of this month this time round, a date which we are obliged to respect. So don’t be asking for a bottle prior to that, such requests will be met with disdainful scorn.

Beaujolais had always made a vin de l’année to celebrate the end of the harvest, but until WWII it was only for local consumption. In fact, once the Beaujolais AOC was established in 1937, AOC rules meant that Beaujolais wine could only be officially sold after 15 December in the year of harvest. These rules were relaxed on 13 November 1951, and the Union Interprofessionnelle des Vins du Beaujolais (UIVB) formally set 15 November as the release date for what would henceforth be known as Beaujolais nouveau.

 

Beer of The Week #2 // Astra

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Astra, a northern German lager brewed in the heart of Hamburg. A beer we’ve stocked for nigh on ten years now and one that proves consistently popular. It has a dry quality common to pilsners from the north but also has a mild hay-like hop bitterness, which contrasts against corny sweet malts.

As for Astra’s appearance, it is golden in colour with a transient white head, with a medium-light body and somewhat grainy feel on the mouth. Easy drinking is surely an option with this bitter pils as it comes in at 4.9% abv, thus you can happily consider it a session beer.

Best served straight from the fridge this beer can be truly refreshing and thirst quenching, the hint of minerals bordering on a steely flavour proves very satisfying balance against the very light malt. All in all a solid, affordable bottle in 50cl. Love the heart!

 

 

The Russians Are Coming!

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We recently took delivery of a range of exclusive Russian vodkas, straight from the Rodina! Five varieties in half bottle measures, 50cl, each with it’s own texture, balance and flavour. Here are a few notes on each.

Okhotnichaya

Produced from pure grain spirits flavoured with port and infusion of ginger, roots of tormentil and angelica, cloves, black and red pepper, juniper berry, coffee, star anise and lemon peel. Also known as ‘Hunters’ Vodka’.

Zubrovka

A greenish-yellow vodka distilled from the infusion of ‘sweet grass’ with a herbaceous, mild and slightly burning flavour combining liquorice, toffee and cough medicine. Not to be dismissed.

Russkaya

Filtered through birch-tree charcoal and quartz sand. Made from a 15th century recipe still going strong today, the recipe is based on potatoes and a small amount of cinnamon. A truly lovely bottle.

Kubanskaya

From the Kuban lowlands in the south of Russia. A delicate bouquet, an original recipe that brings forth a hint of honey and a slightly bitter undertone. An exceptional bottle.

Peter The Great

Clean and soft on the nose. On the palate you’ll findthe purity and refinement that you would expect from a great vodka. The texture is smooth and velvety with light spicy notes from the Dankowskie rye.

Wine of The Week #2 // Cristia

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Cristia are a great Chateauneuf du Pape producer, and have produced this younger Grenache Syrah blend that is a lovely introduction to their range. The 2011 is priced at £6.99 and is available from both our Carrington’s stores. It really is a lot of wine for the money!

In the glass the colour is quite a light red, and the wine’s legs are considerably obvious. You certainly don’t get the impression you’re about to be treated to a 13.5% delight.

The presents a light pepperyness and young blackberries. The palate maintains the light peppery flavour but it is joined by hints of plum and raspberry and is light to medium-bodied. All in all this is a great value wine, and can be drunk on its own as well as with a meal. A delicious all-rounder.

Beer of The Week #1 // Edelstoff

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This is not a beer we bestow lightly, and this is not a generic beer. We fear that we may have set the bar quite high for ourselves by starting with this offering from Augustiner, one of the oldest brewers in Munich, Germany.

While we usually would agree with the old adage of ‘not judging a book by its cover’, the ornate and grand label on this bottle does give an indication of the quality of the product in the bottle.

Edelstoff is a golden lager with a slightly more viscous texture and sweeter finish that you would get from more traditional German Helles beers, but it remains refreshing and light due to the presence of a light hoppiness and the effervescence of this gem. Especially when straight from the fridge!

The lightness of this beer gives no hint to the 5.6% abv export strengh, so while you will be tempted to turn Edelstoff into your new favourite ‘session beer’, be warned that any session on this beer will not last long.

You will find Edelstoff in quality independent bars, and is a firm favourite at Carrington’s in our Chorlton and Didsbury stores. And a firm favourite of ours too!