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 30 November 2021

Blackcurrant & Raspberry Wine 2020 - Fourth Bottle (1), 14th November 2021

The Internet is a marvelous thing. It allows one to order Dim Sum to arrive through the post, complete with cardboard double-decker steamer and dipping sauces. This was Rachel's idea and we had a Zoom Dinner Party with her and Duncan, during which I opened this Blackcurrant & Raspberry Wine. Whilst a white wine might have been preferable, I had nothing chilled. The Dim Sum was fantastic - and my favourite was the pork bun. It all made for an entertaining evening.

An upside-down Mango cake made on 14th November

Monday 29 November 2021

Gooseberry Wine 2020 - Fifth Bottle (5), 20th November 2021

 Liz & David hosted an evening of pure jollity on Saturday. Phil, Angie, Claire and I all gathered there to eat Take-Out pizza and make merry. It has been a little while since I had such unadulterated fun and there was much laughter. Also much wine, of which this bottle of gooseberry was one. It really is a good wine, with a sweetened gooseberry taste. The postscript to this evening, though, is that on Wednesday Liz sent round a message to say that she has Covid. I hope to remain unaffected.

A current selection of the wine I have on the go.

Sunday 28 November 2021

Gooseberry Wine 2020 - Fourth Bottle (2), 17th October 2021

Sunday night was our monthly Zoom Dinner Party with Rachel & Duncan, and that required a bottle of something decent. The menu was Prawn Curry and a dhal (dahl?), meaning the wine needed to be a sharp white. This describes gooseberry perfectly and neither the bottle nor the food disappointed. Again we had a lovely, boozy evening and once the Zoom call had ended Claire and I cut ourselves a slice of Gugelhupf (bless you!) I had made earlier in the day and watched The Crown.

The Gugelhupf

Saturday 27 November 2021

Gooseberry Wine 2020 - Third Bottle (1), 25th-26th August 2021

Instructions for a beetroot & goats cheese risotto directed me to use 150 ml of dry white wine. Having nothing real in the house, I thought that gooseberry would work so opened this bottle. My supposition proved correct: the risotto was excellent and it is a good one to have in my repertoire. The wine wasn't bad either, though not as dry as I had remembered. It was improved by chilling. There was a glass left for Thursday - a day in which a dental hygienist looked at my teeth after four years. Torture!

A fallen and sawn up tree on my walk.

Friday 26 November 2021

Strawberry Wine 2020 - Second Bottle (2), 29th August 2021

I took this bottle to an impromptu barbecue at David and Liz's on Sunday evening, knowing this to be one of Liz's favourites. It was the last of three bottles drunk, which is perhaps too much between four (particularly as Claire had only a sip of this one), but when it is a bank holiday the next day, who's counting? This strawberry vintage is excellent and Liz and David both thought it akin to a proper rosé. It was a lovely way end a day that had been full of chores (one of which was making a damson cake - the result of which was a triumph despite my misgivings).

Damson Cake

Thursday 25 November 2021

Rhubarb Elderflower & Mint Wine 2020 - Third Bottle (3), 5th November 2021

A Friday night bottle. It being Bonfire Night, we spent our evening indoors reassuring the cat that all these loud bangs and fizzes did not mean that she was required to poo on the landing carpet (which is what happened last year). Instead I opened this bottle of Rhubarb, Mint & Elderflower and cooked Tuna Surprise. The wine is a decent white, with elderflower being dominant.

A Google lion in our kitchen

Sunday 7 November 2021

Rhubarb Wine 2020 - Second Bottle (B3), 16th-17th September 2021

There is a burnt taste to this wine and it is quite unlike any rhubarb wine that I have made before. It has a flavour of "Early stages of Lockdown" when the supermarket shelves were bare of anything useful, like white sugar. That I have another ten bottles does not fill me with delight.

Thursday was a strange day. I was in the office (first week back!) but - due to the new hybrid working arrangements, just about no other bugger was. Sitting in a room by myself, but commuting to do so, seems like the worst of both worlds in this new regime.

No photos taken on 16-17th September.
Here is one from my last day of holiday.

Saturday 6 November 2021

Mixed Flower & Nettle Wine - Second Bottle (1), 5th August 2021

This wine was unexpectedly popular at Rydal, and of the three that I took, this was the one most enjoyed. Francesca said that it was the best wine of mine that she has tried - though I think her experience is limited. Someone compared it to a Chardonnay, and I am suspicious of their palate.

Thursdays at Rydal tend to be the day that "Too much fun" catches up with you - and so it proved for me. I didn't do any walking (mind you, the weather had broken), but there was still plenty of music, including Dvorak's 8th Symphony, a Beethoven overture and March to the Scaffold

Too Much Fun at Rydal

Friday 5 November 2021

Orange Wine 2020 - Fifth Bottle (B6), 15th October 2021

Friday was not the most relaxing fun day that I have ever had. Two hours of it was spent lying back in a dentist's chair with my mouth wide open as the dentist said things like "Don't worry about the pain: that's normal," and "Try to relax!". In the end he saved my molar and that is worth 120 minutes of discomfort. By the time 6 p.m. rolled around I was ready for my fair share of wine. By the time Taskmaster was on I was sufficiently numbed by orange wine and whisky to be enjoying the day again.

No photos taken on 15 October but this
was what I should have worn to the dentist's

Thursday 4 November 2021

Orange Wine 2020 - Fourth Bottle (B4), 15th August 2021

It was my first full day back home after two glorious weeks on holiday, and it was a restful, relaxing near-ordinary day. Okay, so I did about two and a half hours work, but I also made a cake (gooseberry orange drizzle), had a short walk, bathed with Claire, started my blackcurrant wine and watched an episode of The Crown. We also drank this bottle of orange wine to smoked haddock fishcakes, which was an excellent combination. Both are strong flavours and I could understand not liking either. However, I think both are fab!

Gooseberry & Orange Drizzle Cake

Wednesday 3 November 2021

Prune & Parsnip Wine 2020 - Fourth Bottle (5), 23rd October 2021

It has been a quiet Saturday, though originally Chris & Kate were meant to stay for the weekend. That they have both fallen ill (not Covid, I think) is unfortunate but at least it meant that I didn't have to spend two hours tidying frantically. Instead I have shopped, played my mother at Scrabble, made a fabulous bread & butter pudding (from the remains of the Gugelhopf) and tried to watch Lego Batman, which was a fail from me. Oh, and drunk half a bottle of Prune & Parsnip, which is Perfectly Pleasant

Wiggy on 23 October

Monday 1 November 2021

Ginger Wine 2020 - Fourth Bottle (5), 17th September 2021

Friday night is Take Out night. Sometimes. At least it was this Friday, and we had a Chinese: Salt & Pepper Tofu, Crispy Chilli Beef and Prawn Crackers - all excellent. A bottle of ginger wine seemed like the right choice (though I went for a bottle of 2021's vintage - which I suspect is better - and missed). This wine is very slightly cloying, but not in a "too sweet" way. It was the end of my first week back at the office and on the whole I am glad to have returned, seeing actual people!

The view from my office window