There’s nothing like the opportunity to flex our vinous muscles with a stonking issue of our Summer Grapevine. We’ve been inundated with new wines over the last few months and have narrowed down quite a wide field of hopefuls into a few handfuls of delight. Zippy whites, crunchy reds and lots more besides have exceeded the grade – this promises to be our favourite issue yet. Here’s to Summer!
our selection of wines for summer is every bit as consistent as the over-optimistic long range weather forecasts!
Well, here we are, the great British summer. Yes, it might be a touch chilly and overcast as I type this but, as always, I hear reports of the hottest July since 1976. As it’s mid-June now I’d say we’ve got about six weeks until that turns to an Indian summer instead. Thankfully our selection of wines for summer is every bit as consistent as the over-optimistic long range weather forecasts! Regardless of what the next few months bring we’ve got some brilliant wines to choose from including some party friendly magnums from Colombo on page 11, a pair of ridiculously good value Sicilians on page 14 and a ground breaking Gamay on page 19. Here’s to picnic blankets, sweet peas, potato salad, barbecues and the occasional ray of sun. Cheers from all at Hennings!
The thousands (yes really) of wines the team have tasted over the last few months…
It was light last night when I left work – let joy be unconfined. This issue of The Grapevine is almost finished too, once this bit has been typed, so it’s time for a double celebration. We’ve worked tirelessly on this issue and couldn’t be happier with the result. The thousands (yes really) of wines the team have tasted over the last few months have been distilled down to a seemingly small number and a selection of them can be found within these pages. The rest will make their way into our shops over the next few months so everyone has something new and exciting to explore. The tastings haven’t always been easy (see pages 18 and 19) but they’ve always been fun. There are some brilliant wines in here as well as details of three upcoming tutored tastings so if you’re keen to experience the stories behind wine, why not book a ticket or two? Cheers!
The Grapevine 41…an opportunity to wrap up and drink some richer wines…
Well, thank goodness that’s over. There’s nothing I like more than moving into winter and the opportunity to wrap up and drink some richer wines. The team here have been hard at work compiling our festive favourites into The Grapevine 41 for your vinous pleasure over the next couple of months and think we’ve cracked it. Obviously, with over 1,000 products we’ve got masses more available both online and in our shops so if there’s something else you’re after then peruse via your preferred method – I’m certain you’ll find it. All at Hennings would like to wish you well for the coming festive period and take the opportunity to thank you all for continuing to support the independent – we couldn’t do it without you.
Chilled red wine might seem like heresy but it might be time to think again.
Before you wheel the barbecue out of hibernation this year, perhaps a little vinous preparation might be in order. No doubt your fridge will be well stocked with white and rosé in anticipation of a glorious summer, but may I suggest a quick shift-about to make some room for a couple of bottles of chilled red wine as well?
Some of you may well have tried a wonderfully chilled Beaujolais, as indeed we have recommended below, along with some others. However there are lots of wines you could choose that can be enjoyed at a cooler temperature. Follow the five tips below and you won’t go far wrong.
1. Fresh and fruity. Beaujolais being the classic example of chilled red wine. Oonce chilled it becomes refreshing without losing any character.
2. Chilled, not ice cold. 45 minutes in a fridge should do it. Don’t treat it like a white wine and leave in the fridge all day as most of the delicate flavours will be muted and it’ll taste dull. The only exception to this would be a sparkling red such as Lambrusco, which is best served nice and cold.
3. Cool climate. Generally, coastal wineries or high altitude wines without too much weight or alcohol with good acidity are best.
4. Light not heavy. Heavier wines tend to lose too much character when chilled and become very clumsy. Choose lighter varietals like Pinot Noir, Gamay and Cab Franc, not Cab Sauvignon or Shiraz.
5. Have fun and experiment!