- Published: 18 June 2013 18 June 2013
Its always interesting to taste wines during flights because of the pressure placed on the senses. Wines can taste far different from when they're served on terre firma.
I am typing this on a British Airways flight back from Istanbul and have been served a couple of small bottles of Cape Spring Pinotage from South Africa. Pinotage is wine that often surprises people at how easy it is to drink, with tasty pungent cherry fruits. This is reflected now. As soon as the wine is in the plastic tumbler, I can smell the fruit even at 10 kilometres altitude. It's pleasant, welcoming and exactly what I hoped I might get in these circumstances.
It compares favourably to the flight out of London with Turkish Airlines where I was served a French country wine with no hint of the grapes used in production. At first sniff there was little, if anything, to humour the nostrils. I was a little disappointed. The wine was drinkable but not exciting at all. I am, please understand, only talking abbot the wine. The rest of the flight experience was absolutely fine with no complaints whatsoever.
The pinotage on this BA flight is worth a mention because it is actually reaching the senses and conveying a little of what we hope and expect from a glass of wine at odd times when confined, alert and trying hard to avoid mentally ticking away the minutes. The acidity is good in the mouth causing a little pucker of the lips. The fruit is attractive and light as we'd expect from a young wine; none of the complexities that age brings.
A good choice BA!
At meal time I opted for the merlot cabernet blend. This was a little unimpressionable at first but opened up nicely whilst I was talking to the lady next to me. The back label accurately describes "hints" of blackberry fruit which I think is probably quite accurate. Unfortunately, when flying, we need more than hints and nuance… we need a bit of punch and a little clout! So my tip is as was and remains… the pinotage!
Join our mailing list for occasional updates of what we have been up to:
An aperitif by the coliseum
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.
Artichoke pasta and very fine Pigato
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!
Soave: volcanic wines with elegance and longevity
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.
An American In Paris; Tanisha Townsend (@GirlMeetsGlass) discusses podcasts, Paris wine bars, & what she's drinking at the moment
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.
Wine tasting in Galicia: The pilgrims search for Albarino
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.
Interview: (Re)Defining the Entre-Deux-Mers, climate change & tasting with Stephane Dupuch
Driving into the Entre-Deux-Mers region from the north, the vineyards roll out like a bright green deep-pile carpet across the undulating land. It’s hard not to be excited about tasting wines with so much heritage, as we head to Chateau-Sainte-Marie to meet with 5th generation owner, Stéphane Dupuch.