Hush. Puppies.

We've just returned from a few days staying with old mates in Scotland and joining us on our long journey home were a couple of new additions to our household. Meet Yankee & Zulu, our eight week old cocker spaniel puppies. Half term just got a whole lot more hectic, in a good way. Like babies, they sleep a lot, eat a lot and there's so much puppy poo. The children watch them whilst they're sleeping, willing them to wake so they can play in the garden. And just as I remember my mother telling me never to wake a sleeping baby, so I'm telling them to let sleeping dogs lie. Gina Ford would be horrified.

Current white in the fridge: Markus Huber Gruner Veltliner, £7.99 (normally £10.79), Waitrose
It's not often you get to pick up such a groovy Gru-V at this price but the offer's only on until next Tuesday. Made by one of Austria's most awarded producers in the Traisental region, Markus Huber has bottled a benchmark Gruner Veltliner (that's the name of the grape) with classic peach and pear fruits, and a sprinkle (as opposed to a kick, see below) of spice. Perfect half term pour. 

Current red in the rack: Maretti Langhe Rosso 2013, £11.99, Majestic
Langhe lies in Piedmont, a region in northern Italy famous for truffles (the fungus kind rather than the chocolate kind). Wine-wise, Barolo is Piedmont's big hitter, an enormous red made from the Nebbiolo grape. This Italian red blends a bit of Nebbiolo with the other great grape of the region, Barbera. Think of it as a baby Barolo, with chunky bramble fruits and a whack of spice. Fantastic when there's a plate of cheese to be picked at on the table. 

Chin chin x

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