gewurtztraminer villa maria 2010There is something about gewurztraminer that always strikes me as tarty or phallic; very likely the bold extrovert characteristics that elicit so many varied responses from different people.  This one made by Villa Maria is particularly interesting being from New Zealand.  Most commonly you'll find these wines labeled as being from Alsace, Germany or Austria.  I recall being in the northern Italian town of Castel Franco and being overwhelmed by the seductiveness of the young inexpensive gewurztraminer varieties on sale.  Absolutely delicious.

For flavours the most obvious are litchi, light spice, Turkish delight and fruit cocktail.  It's different, maybe in fineness than that of the Alsace wines but I am still enjoying it a lot.  It's worth a buy for sure.  It goes very well with an extensive and unusual range of foods.  I've had it tonight with a lamb and vegetable stew and it has been swell but you could easily put this wine with more spicy Asian cuisine or even a big plate of smoked salmon!

It's outlandishness also seems to chime well with socialising in the run up to Christmas so definitely give it a go!

£9.99  Majestic,  Waitrose,, Wine Rack

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Climate change podcast

Last week a picture was posted on Twitter of vines in Shabo, a large estate that lies to the west of Odesa on southern Ukraine’s Black Sea coastline. The image seemed benign at face value but the reality, of course, is that the city of Odesa has been bracing itself for attack by Russian forces. 


As COVID-19 conspires with the grimmest of winds and rain to force a societal retreat behind our own front doors, the word ennui springs to mind. The muddle of displeasure is pierced when Natalia hands me a large bulbous glass of a liquid I do not recognise.



Britain’s lamentable exit

On the eve of Britain’s official departure from the EU, my partner and I decided to explore a small town on the Italian Riviera where thewintry cold doesn’t feel so much like cold war bite.

I had warned my significant other that I would be having an inverse departure party, a release of the sanity valve if you like!


Sitting inside the ancient castle walls inside the town of Soave, a short drive from Verona in northern Italy, the unique slightly almond aroma of the indigenous grape, Garganega, rises gently from my glass. The castle sprawls up the side of an extinct volcano that gives the region its variant soil structures that mark out the better quality of Soave wines.


Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.


The cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the final resting place of Saint James, rises out of the landscape, infested with antiquity. The rambling steep streets give way to shafts of dramatic light, emblazoned chapels, and tightly packed tapas bars, dusty, as old novels pressed together in antiquarian bookshops.


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