This blog is a record of the wine that I make and drink. Each flavour made and each bottle drunk will appear here. You may come to the conclusion that, on the whole, I should be drinking less.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Blackberry Wine - Fourth Bottle (C6), 14th-15th November 2015

Concerts and floods were the dominant themes for this bottle.

I opened the blackberry wine after coming home from Music Club, where Bill, Theresa and I had played a suite by Swan Hennesy. We only played moderately well and I was cross with Bill for getting a beat ahead and then missing a repeat. Still, the blackberry wine opened with a 'pop' and sparkled.

We finished the bottle on Sunday after returning from ASO's concert in Ilkley, which was Elgar's tedious Second Symphony. Getting to Ilkley was a challenge. The Wharfe had burst its banks and we had to approach Ilkley over the moor. Rose'y couldn't get there at all so the concert was made all the more interesting by a first bassoon sight-reading his part.

Flooding approaching Ilkley

Monday, 23 November 2015

Crab Apple Wine - Sixth Bottle (C3), 13th November 2015

I shouldn't really have finished this bottle. It was a Friday night and I had drunk very little through the (rather stressful) week. But we started the evening with a glass of rhubarb wine and then Claire had no more than a couple of glasses from this bottle. It wasn't even as if I particularly wanted the rest - but I justified empying it on the basis that there was 'only' a glass and a half left.

The wine was a very ordinary Crab Apple and Friday night was a very ordinary end-of-week night. So, nothing to laugh at at all.

Friday, 20 November 2015

Rhubarb Wine - Fifth Bottle (B6), 12th-13th November 2015

Dan Benn, our wonderful bathroom fitter, gave me strict instructions to give Claire lots of wine on Thursday night. The latest thing to go wrong with the House is the bathroom - the bath, the sink pedestal and the radiator have all had to be returned to the supplier for being substandard (scratches and cracks mostly). Claire is not finding this easy and is also hugely busy at work. So this bottle was wine as medication and it helped. I detected a slight cheese taste, however.

Monday, 16 November 2015

Prune & Parsnip - Seventh Bottle (B6), 7th-8th November 2015

One bottle is never enough when we have visitors, so our second bottle of the evening was Prune & Parsnip. Judith had made a marble chocolate cake and of the many available options, we thought this flavour would go the best. The unusual thing about the evening was that there was still half a bottle left at the end of it. The remainder helped our Sunday evening after another day of solid decorating for Claire. She is looking exhausted and is not sleeping properly. We will never move house again!

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Blackcurrant & Raspberry Wine - Third Bottle (B5), 7th November 2015

Claire had the idea that we should drink this wine with people who knew Julia. Bob and Judith were here this weekend, and whilst Judith never met her, Bob spend a number of Rydals in Julia's company.

The Aged Ps were here to help with the House, so Claire set the septuagenarians to work, stripping paint off skirting boards and painting undercoats onto walls. Judith brought the evening meal with her - casseroled pork - and the wine went well with it. It is a fabulous bottle, full of rich fruit flavours.

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Apple Wine - Fourth Bottle (5), 5th-8th November 2015

This wine has improved on its keeping. The apple flavour is more pronounced and it has acquired a thickness of taste lacking in previous bottles. There are elements of a strong scrumpy, and that is unsurprising.

It was opened on a Thursday before Claire went to her string quartet. She had a headache that had lasted for more than a day and felt that a restorative glass of wine (or two) might be the answer. On Friday night I slurped greedily at Claire's glass, but could do no more as it was Book Group and I was driving (The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot: I loved it). We finished the remains on Sunday.

Monday, 9 November 2015

Christmas Tutti Fruti - Tenth Bottle (A2), 1st November 2015

Slow cookers are excellent. Claire put some strips of braising steak, bits of kidney, some mushrooms, chopped onion, a clove of crushed garlic, a bayleaf and enough water to cover in one before nine in the morning. We then spent a full day gardening and decorating at the House (the kitchen is the colour of putty), came back and - hey presto - a delicious stew. This called for a bottle of red and we hadn't drunk Christmas Tutti Fruti for a while. It is a tasty wine - verging on the "could this be made from grapes?". There is something more complex about it than single fruit wines: a depth of flavour.