Anyone who knows me will know that my main passions in life are travelling, food and fine wine. I do have another guilty pleasure though, and that is Gin, so when I was asked by friends if I would like to go to a Gin cocktail masterclass at the Bombay Sapphire distillery in Laverstoke I jumped at the chance.
The McLaren Vale is one of the Adelaide’s premium wine regions, with over 120 vineyards creating countless bottles of stunning wine every year. Many of the vineyards in the McLaren Vale are traditional style vineyards with tasting rooms and cellar doors, but at d’Arenberg wines they have tried something different.
With a total of 18 world-renowned wine regions in South Australia, and over 200 cellar doors all within an hour’s drive from Adelaide, it's no wonder Adelaide is one of the 10 great wine capitals of the world. The three most famous wine regions in South Australia are the Barossa, Clare Valley and the McLaren Vale.
The Tinwood Estate is located just three miles from my home, on the edge of the South Downs national park. Tinwood first set up their vineyard in 2007, and since have been producing three fantastic varieties of sparkling wine. From their Blanc de Blancs, and their Estate Brut to their cool refreshing Rosé.
When you are in Porto it is highly likely that you will sample some finest Port at least once. Either with a meal or on its own, or perhaps you will make a trip to one or Porto's famous Port cellars for a professional Port tasting. This was at the top of my to-do list for my recent trip to Porto. I would recommend booking a tasting for the afternoon, perhaps after lunch.
The Isle of Wight, with its stunning coastline and beautiful beaches, has long had a reputation for being a holiday destination aimed at families who want a budget summer holiday close to home. The result is that the island has also gained the reputation as offering nothing more than beaches and amusement arcades.
One of my local wine stores, Hennings Wine Merchants of Chichester often holds wine tastings on Friday evenings. Each evening is usually themed on a specific wine region or wine. A couple of weeks ago they held a Croatian wine evening, and after having been to Croatia a few times and enjoyed the local wines, I decided to book to go with some friends and experience more of what Croatia has to offer the wine world.
We arrived at Carr Taylor Wines on a warm Sunday afternoon. It was a beautiful day, with hardly a cloud in the sky. After checking in for our vineyard tour and wine tasting at their cellar door we were shown to a sun-kissed terrace, where a handful of other people were sat around wooden picnic tables (the kind you would find in a traditional pub garden) happily chatting while waiting for the rest of the guests so the tour could commence. The terrace area was absolutely beautiful, an old rustic farm house to the side, the cellar door in front of us, and just fields of vines as far as the eye could see.