Pees In Our Time

I've had a complaint from a reader - a reader!* - who's asked me not to bang on about how bleak January is, about dieting or not drinking (as if). She wants wine recommendations and a laugh. That's me told.

So, I'm not a big spirits drinker: vodka makes me feisty, gin makes me cry, whisky makes me think I'm Judi Dench. Last week, however, someone bought me a gin martini and it made me tell them how I peed on a power plate, used in my efforts (without having to break sweat, obviously) to lose baby weight.

I guess you had to be there.

This week's white in the fridge: Waitrose Chablis 2009, £9.49, Waitrose
The Chardonnay grape is the vinous equivalent of a blank piece of paper. Pick a grape off the vine, pop it in your mouth and it doesn't taste of much. Grapey, really. What influences the resulting wine is where and how the grape is grown and what the winemaker does to it. I've always found that the Chablis region does a great naked Chardonnay. By that I mean little or no oak; rather the soil and climate do the talking. It is a cool region with mean soil, so the grapes have to work hard to ripen. It gives the wine a steeliness, a mineral-like quality. Really difficult to describe but if you can, pour a glass of Australian Chardonnay and Chablis and try them side by side. Then you'll know what I am on about.

This week's red on the side: St Hallett Barossa Shiraz 2008, £4, Co-op
I feel almost dirty writing about Australian wine at this price but they've had a huge wine glut and need to get rid, so buy it and don't feel bad. St Hallett makes lovely wines and this one promised me a 'cascading Barossa Shiraz experience'. Now, I've had more than my fair share of cascading experiences, one of which was on a power plate. As you know. Luckily the experience delivered by the wine was a good one: dark bramble fruits with an almost chocolatey note to it. It's not the most complicated wine on earth but at £4, it is bloody marvellous. We had it with slow roasted lamb on Sunday, they made a lovely couple.  

*Sis, you complain again and I'll tell your 'We Are The World' story. That's funny.

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