Back in May I nervously went along to the Three Wine Men event at the Museum of Science & Industry. Nervous because I wasn’t sure what to expect from the event, would there be lots of wine snobs with no time for a novice like me? The timidity disappeared as the event went on (can’t imagine what may have lubricated the process) which meant that this time round, while I still may not know a huge amount about wines I knew I’d be in for a cracking few hours sampling, tasting, drinking and talking about the stuff.
Last time the sun was shining and I seem to remember it being fairly warm. This time, however, the sun had already set and it was bitterly chilly. So while my favourite wine from last time made an appearance again (and was still very good indeed) the Alisios Pinot Grigio/Riesling from Wines of Brasil is definitely one for the warmer weather, for me at least.
So accompanied again by Mr B, his girlfriend Hobbo and The Mrs off we went. First up the Festive Feast Masterclass from Olly Smith. A tour of wines from around the globe, starting right here in Blighty with a crispy, very bubbly fizz from Sparkling English Wines - the Furleigh Estate Classic Cuvée, 2009. Over to New Zealand, then to Spain and finishing up in Chile. The nicest wine of this masterclass for me was the Viña Pomal Reserva, 2008 – a great Rioja.
Then came the tour of the rooms trying as many of the 600 wines as we could – all in the interest of education you understand. It was nice to be able to break up all the wine with visits to the Port Street Beer stand which I though was a brilliant little addition – if not a little cheeky for them to sneak into a wine event. Also old favourites, Levanter Fine Foods offered (as always) their fantastic, smokey, salty, meaty Spanish treats to either complement or contrast the tipple in hand.
Masterclass 2 saw Tim Atkin take us over to Australia for a tour of their wine and how to match each with different foods. As always as soon as food was mentioned my ears tend to prick up and I become all attentive and alert. There were some great insights into matching different styles of wines with different foods and I hope to put some in to practice over the festive period.
My favourite wine this time round? Given the chilly weather and the swelling of Christmas cheer it was the 21 year aged Tawny from Australia we tried in Tim’s Masterclass. I have however committed the rookie error of losing my notes – so if anyone from Three Wine Men fancies letting me know what it was called I’d be most grateful. Now while that was my personal favourite on the day – the four of us also agreed that for a cheeky, comparatively low alcohol, fizzy tipple on Christmas morning you could do worse than the Jacob’s Creek Moscato. Listed in the book at £9.99 but according to the team on the stand – available at ASDA for a fiver.
So once again a fantastic event – I can’t say I won’t be back in June, it’s just a lot of fun.
And each of the fellas deserves a special thanks – Tim Atkin for embarrassing me a little as to the colour of my shirt, Olly Smith for taking the time to chat to me and The Mrs and signing her copy of Both Barrels and to Oz Clarke for seizing us on arrival and demanding that we should not have empty glasses.
Thanks all and Cheers