Stone's Ginger WineOne of my favourite mood shifting drinks for languishing on a sunny afternoon or early evening, has to be the Whisky Mac. The fine taste of Scotch Whisky and ginger wine takes the sharper edges off the worst of prickly days.

Thus it is worth mentioning that the celebrated creators of the finest ginger wine, Stone's, have brought out a limited edition of specially designed bottles to pack into your jubilee hamper.

I road tested the contents last week with visiting relatives.  Having mixed up the rather long Mac, I was interrupted in my pleasurable supping by a text message luring me down to the Old Ship Pub on the Thames in Hammersmith.  I slipped out unnoticed leaving Ch and her mother chatting over their Whisky and Stone's Ginger Wine (her mother being an inveterate whisky and ginger drinker).  

Well the cocktail certainly came up trumps.  By the time I returned about an hour later there was nothing but vapour trails and surreal guffawing going on.  The conversation had unwound to nostalgic remembrances of times past. The brew had worked its tasteful magic. I'm promptly poured another round and soldiered on.

The Queen's Jubilee period is up on us. I urge you to arm yourself with a bottle of Stone's and Scotch for when the going gets tough.  Deliciously fun!

Follow us on social media:

Secret Sommelier on TwitterSecret Sommelier on Instagramfacebook 001linkedin 001youtube 001

COPOUT Book by Nick Breeze

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.


We use cookies to improve our website and your experience when using it. Cookies used for the essential operation of this site have already been set. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

  I accept cookies from this site.
EU Cookie Directive plugin by