Dry January 2019??!

Dry January 2019??! Image

It's all about the quality not quantity!

Let's just forget all about Dry January. It's a miserable enough month anyway without punishing ourselves further. We always recommend drinking in moderation and you are probably ready for a bit of a slowdown in all your consuming after the festive period anyway. I know I am, but going completely dry? Not for me.

Instead I think we should focus on drinking a little better rather than a little more. Spending a little bit more per bottle may lift you out of your usual habits, wake up your taste buds and pleasantly surprise you. After all, if you are savouring your tipple, you will drink it slower to make the experience and enjoyment last longer.

We are not talking about spending a fortune and, without getting into the conundrum of how much it actually costs to get a bottle of wine onto the shelves ( duty, VAT, retail percentages), we do know that the more you spend per bottle, more of that value is held in the wine rather than any other of those unavoidable costs.

So what to look at? Let's keep it seasonal and start with warming reds. Wines such as the Crocera Barbera d'Asti from Northern Italy are like a velvety smooth hug in a glass with rich damson and black cherry notes, a hint of chocolate all encased in smooth structure, a perfect pairing for many seasonal casseroles and hearty dishes. You can generally expect to pay between £8 - £15 for these wines, so they won't break the bank.

If it's whites you want, you may want to revisit new world Chardonnays, like the Sunbrunt Chardonnay from Australia. They usually have more rounder sun-ripened tropical fruit notes than their old world counter-parts and from there it's your choice whether you want a little oak-ageing to add depth or keep it un-oaked for added brightness and a fresh finish. Either way they are guaranteed to make you smile and are a perfect match for creamy pasta dishes or many fish recipes, so make a good mid-week treat. Again, prices should start from £8 - £15, the higher level getting you some gems if you seek the right advice.

And don't dismiss sparkling, I don't think we should save it just for celebrations. If Friday fish and Chips is a regular occurrence in your house-hold, then adding a few bubbles can make it an occasion. I don't mean you have to splash out on a bottle of Champagne – although if you have one lurking in the wine rack left over from Christmas then what are you waiting for? Try a bottle of Cava, Spain's sparkling of choice. Our Mas Macia Cava Brut is as elegant as Champagne, with clean crisp fruit notes and an underlying nutty savoury edge. Drunk with all manner of tapas in Spain, it is a surprisingly versatile food match, so feel free to experiment and enjoy. Good Cava, you should expect to pay around £10.

As ever, as for advice and don't be afraid of leaving your wine comfort-zone and making 2019 a year of wine adventures.

 

Happy New Year to you all.

 

Last Updated: 10/01/2019
Author: Emma Grigor-Taylor

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