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.

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Crab Apple & Strawberry Wine - Second Bottle (3), 6th February 2016

I wanted a good bottle of wine for Saturday night. It was the evening that I played in Mozart's Quintet for Piano and Winds at Music Club. And however it was destined to go, something cold, delicious and alcoholic was going to be necessary on my return.

In fact, it went pretty well, though I only just managed to avoid destroying the music in its last few bars. I stopped counting my bars' rest and realised, as the music continued around me, that I would have to come in by guess-work. This was successful, but it spooked me and the demi-semiquaver passage looked alien on the page. I busked the penultimate bar, hoping that playing a repeated E-flat would fit. It did, we reached the last bar successfully and I returned to my seat, knowing that it had been a close call. The wine was welcome.

(In the YouTube video above, it is at 18:11 that I got into trouble. The bassoonist in the clip does it effortlessly, of course.)

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Crab Apple Wine - Tenth Bottle (A6), 3rd-5th February 2016

Crab apple wine has turned into a default mid-week bottle when you want to drink something that isn't horrid. There are a few other flavours that meet this description, and this vintage of crab apple is the most flawed of all. It is rough and ready - not necessarily qualities one seeks in a wine.

We started the bottle post WYSO (A Midsummer Night's Dream continues to improve, Richard III has yet to grow on me). I finished it on Friday evening before Book Group. We had been promised a lift from Ros but at the last minute Stumpy, her cat, started behaving oddly, so I drove, trusting that any after effects from the crab apple wine had long since worn off.

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Blackberry Wine - Sixth Bottle (A1), 31st January 2016

A Sunday night bottle to a Sunday night roast.

We had a large chicken, of which we managed about a quarter, all manner of vegetables and forced-meat balls. Then we watched an episode of Torchwood. Can Sunday nights be much better? The wine was, of course, lovely. As was the day (despite the weather). We have started doing 'House' things again - specifically hanging pictures (though there was also a quick trip to the tip). Our Geological Map of the Grand Canyon now dominates the kitchen's back wall and the 'Family Members on the Beach' group of photos is at the top of the stairs.

Friday, 5 February 2016

Vanilla Wine - Third Bottle (2), 30th January 2016

"I remember this bottle as slightly disappointing," I told Claire after revealing that our Saturday night bottle would be Vanilla wine.

"I remember it being vastly disappointing," she replied.

It is true that it wasn't my greatest. For the first time, though, I got a vanilla hit as the initial taste. And like many poor wines, once I had got used to the flavour (cloying, dull), the second and subsequent glasses were better.

We drank it after a visit from John, Jayne, Alwin and Lucas - it has been a couple of years since we last saw them, and the boys are delightful. We pressed a postcard for Rydal into their hands - Lucas plays the trombone - and they might give it a go.

When typing "cloying dull" into Google Image Search, I got this!

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Blackcurrant & Red Gooseberry - Final Bottle (6), 29th January 2016

The Gooseberry has really come to the fore in this flavour for its final bottle. Despite being red in colour, the wine has a crispness ordinarily associated with white wine. I think this has been the best bottle of the batch.

It has been our second quiet Friday night in a row, much of it sat in front of the stove reading. My book is a sixteenth century account of Spaniards exploring the New World: the source material for our Book Group group The Moor's Account. Historically fascinating, but with frustrating gaps that the fiction fills.

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Prune & Parsnip Wine - Ninth Bottle (B2), 27th-29th January 2016

The first half of this bottle coincided with a celebrity Great British Bake Off after WYSO. One of the pleasures of the regular series is watching ordinary people do something well and with passion. The celebrity version jetisons these elements in favour of knowing humour. It is slicker and funnier, but something is lost. Still, half a bottle of prune & parsnip wine (between us) with its sherry flavour slipped down rather nicely.

There was only a little left this evening, which I poured on the stroke of six. The alcohol content must be high, because even a small glass took an edge off the evening.

Sunday, 31 January 2016

Orange Wine - Tenth Bottle ( A5), 24th January 2016

This bottle finds me returned from an Airedale concert in Saltaire. It has been a long day, and one where a bottle of orange wine is well deserved. We played lots of loud, difficult music - and I can't decide whether The Three Cornered Hat or  Francesca da Rimini  was the loudest and most difficult. It all went well, though, and I returned on a high.

We drank much of the bottle in front of the stove, aprreciating the silence (apart from the occasional turn or a page and a purring cat). The sharpness of orange wine should bring clarity to the day, but in fact it has done the opposite.

Francesca da Rimini - and Dante in the centre panel (I think)