Champagne Taittinger Nocturne Rosé

 It was a beautiful late May Saturday in Dulwich, SE London, so I invited Natalia to the park to share a bottle of pink Champagne Taittinger Nocturne. 

This rosé champagne is made from 70% pinot noir which gives it the bright strawberry fruitiness and good bite of fresh acidity. The remaining 30% of the grape blend is chardonnay which adds a little softness and elegance to the mouthfeel.

Taittinger is one of the big Champagne houses but still retains that family approachability. We have caught up with Clovis and Vitalie Taittinger this year in London who are both great ambassadors for champagne and great fun representatives of Taittinger.

The Champagne Taittinger Nocturne has a wide open appeal and a touch flamboyancey about it (not least represented in the packaging!!). It's perfect for just about every summer party you might be throwing this year. Just think playfulness and Dionysus.

Taittinger Nocturne Rosé ‘City Lights’ NV

Harrods, Ann et Vin

RRP: £60

 cover summertaittinger

Les Pins Couchés, Rosé 2015, Jean-Luc Colombo

Colombo wines are a favourite with Secret Sommelier. Les Pins Couches fits the bill for a clean light summer fruit mix of strawberry and raspberry with a refreshing finish that just might have you reaching for a second bottle. This could easily pair well with a range of dishes including pizza with roasted artichokes and peppers, cured smoked salmon, grilled or bbq’ed mackerel fillets with chilli jam…

RRP: £11.10 from: Harrods

Cabaret Cotes de Provence 2015, Famille Sumiere

A very pale pink with light scented perfume of red fruit. This may suit those who like subtlety over upfront fruitiness. Crisp and dry and very refreshing indeed. Perfect aperitif wine for sitting by the pool, by the beach, washing down picnic sandwiches, etc. leaves the mouth feeling spritely and fresh for at least another glass.

£9.50 from Oddbins

Vina Real, Rosado, Rioja Rosé 2014

Pale in colour, subtle summer fruit aromas, even strawberry cheesecake but very fresh with a gorgeous mouth cleansing crispness that leaves me wanting for another glass. A fab aperitif but be warned, it’s an easy sipper so put a couple in the fridge.

Vina Real Rosado 2014

RRP: £11.05 - The Wine Reserve

Poças Porto Rosé

When I received a bottle of róse port to taste recently I conceded to the novel appeal and left the actual tasting to due course. Then mark my twinkling eyes and pursed puckering lips when, to my surprise the róse port was a complex and sumptuously fruity hit. 

The bright pink colour is accompanied by a nose of unmistakable fortified quality. I very much enjoyed the fruity complexity of flavours lingering on my palate. They’re nothing short of addictive (& not just to an old soak like me!), the richness and strength in alcohol parrying the cubic volume of the bottle (50cl).

Róse port is perfect for fine picnics, aperitifs, chilling to the side of your nightclub tabletop, or simply supping and succouring after a couple of light courses on a late summer evening! 

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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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