The Alf & Ailsa tasting – Bordeaux Quay Dec 2013

The final exam is looming.  The WSET diploma Unit 3 exam (the big one!) is in January so I am cramming in as many different wines in the next few weeks as possible.  All in the name of education you understand.  So I was thankful that the West of England Wine and Spirit Association had…

AOC Fiefs Vendéens – Domaine de la Barbinière

When my grandparents said they were moving to the Vendée several years ago the first thing we all did was say ‘where?’ and quickly look it up on Google. The first visit was a shock to the system as they live in a very rural area; there were stars at night, no sound of trucks…

Imbibe 2013

My first impression upon entering Olympia for Imbibe Live 2013 was the energy levels – they were through the roof. There were stilt walkers, people with brightly coloured sombrero’s on their heads and leis draped around their necks and this was still only 11 o’clock in the morning. It already felt very different from the…

A Select Tasting of Fine Rosés, Decanter 2013

With summer finally here, although don’t shout too loud because you might scare it away, many people are reaching for a glass of something refreshing and light to enjoy and what better than a glass of rosé. And by rosé I don’t mean something sickly sweet or with Zinfandel on the label or that you…

‘Gold’ Wine tasting, Decanter 2013

By now you must have realised that I have a passion for sweet wines. Something that four years ago I would never have drunk willingly. My only reference at the time would have been cheap medium-sweet German wines that were drunk in the local pub. Then when I was out having dinner with the family,…

Visit to Moët & Chandon

Yippee, I’ve finally completed all my assignments for my MA Food and Wine Culture. That means I finally have a life again, well until I start on the dissertation. It also means I can finally catch up with my blog, and how about a glass of Champagne to celebrate? Last month my husband was mad…

The art of Pommery

Like Dijon, Reims has always been a stop-over destination for us when we head down to Italy. We usually arrived late at night and left first thing in the morning. Now, thanks to my wine studies, I have been lucky enough to spend more time in these beautiful cities and take in more of their…

Corton visit 2013

When last years MA Food and Wine Culture cohort visited Dijon it was 20°c and they enjoyed picnics in Beaujolais and walking through the vineyards.  This year it was a bit different.  Most days the temperatures were in minus figures and snow was not uncommon.  So after a day spent in a very warm classroom we reluctantly headed…

Australian Wine Tasting – Matthew Jukes at Great Western Wine

Last year I completed 5 units of the WSET diploma – everything but unit 3 – the dreaded and very large still wine unit.  I have decided due to various commitments to do unit 3 via distance learning.  Having already completed various courses with the Open University I have no qualms about learning in this…

New Year Resolutions

It’s that time of year again when the first question you are asked by most people is ‘so what’s your New Year’s resolution?’  Most people either want to do more or less of something.  One friend of mine is going to exercise more; another is going to eat less chocolate.  Mine is one that would…

Tasting the wines of the Languedoc-Roussillon – Decanter

After spending a week in Montpellier in the summer I have developed a real love for the wines from this region and when I heard that Decanter where having a Languedoc-Roussillon tasting as part of their Fine Wine Encounter I couldn’t wait to go. The Languedoc-Roussillon wine region is rugged, hot and dusty but also has great…

Marathon du Médoc 2012

Back in February when I said to my husband, ‘Do you fancy running a marathon,’ I had no concept of how life changing training for a marathon would be.  Fast forward to September, I’ve lost 23lbs and many inches, tried various horrible tasting power gels, ran hundreds of miles and become best friend’s with the…