Heyy, Fionn this Thursday!

    Hope you all had a nice bit of respite over the festive season. Plenty of cheese, wine, and good times were had here, and I am now looking forward to a more easy-going month ahead… I say currently halfway through a bottle of La Rogerie…oops.

    Anyway, how are we all feeling about January? Eager to start the new year on a clean slate? Made those resolutions? Joined that gym? Perhaps, you’re like me and are wondering how you’re gonna survive the worst month of the year (sorry capricorns). Regardless of how you look at it, and whatever you’ve got planned for January I still think you should be drinking well…

    For all of you brave enough to go through this month without booze, I salute you! But, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to indulge in a few delicious bevs. We have a couple of cracking AF options in stock atm. I’m particularly keen on these ‘wine alternatives’ from Blurred Vines. Whilst I wouldn’t say they taste just like wine, they do a pretty damn good job at mimicking the sensation. These concoctions are a blend of herbs, plants, and lots of other good things. Spark is made with a touch of chili, which sounds odd so just trust me in that it leaves a little heat in the back of the throat, just like real stuff does! It’s these clever little details that make these feel like proper alternatives and not just overpriced soft drinks. So whilst this is not going to be a like-for-like wine sub, this is going to be a refreshingly spritzy, pink thing that is just as delicious! 

    Another clever trick is that the base blend involves green tea. You get the softest caffeine buzz to help you stay sprightly throughout the evening without keeping you tossing and turning all night. Seriously smart! Sharp is the white equivalent and is herbal with notes of crisp apples and gooseberries. I’ve been drinking these for a while now. Not just in January but year-round as a guilt-free midweek treat. I genuinely think these are the real deal and the best I’ve found in this weird low and no world. Please do let me know if this low/no area is something you’d be keen to see more of online? 

    If you’re trying to be more mindful but still indulging here and there then maybe you’d be up for some lower ABV stuff? Something you can happily have with a meal without even feeling it the next day. This Riesling from Hofgut Falkenstein weighs in at a modest 8% and ticks all the boxes for me. Riotous aromatics with plenty of florals, spices, and ripe orchard fruit. A teeny-tiny bit of sugar is also certainly nothing to be scared of. In fact, the RS makes it the perfect accompaniment to that spicy takeaway you caved in for after surviving the week on nothing but salad. Roc Ambule is another low-abv winner. Clocking in at 9.5%, made with zero additions and bottled as juicy 'lil pet-nat. Wallet friendly too. This flies BTG at Dan’s and it’s clear to see why. Value, drinkability, and deliciousness in perfect harmony!

    You could do what I’m doing this Jan. Drinking less but drinking better. Baller bottles only. How else will I survive these dark, dreary times? If you see me sippin’ something sub-par, slap it out my hand and point me in the direction of our newish elite fridge that you can now find under lock and key at Dan’s. This week I’ve got my eyes on some serious Chenin. Searing acidity, ripe-fruited deliciousness is just what the doctor ordered and the Poïèsis will certainly do the trick. One you could cellar too if you didn’t want to over indulge this month.

    If you’re more inclined for red then you could do a whole lot worse than William Downie’s, Gippsland. This guy is making pound-for-pound some of the best Pinot, not just in Aus, but the world. His Gippsland bottling is oh-so silky, juicy fruited, and with aromatics off the charts. Certified banger.

    Gonna end on a high here, but if you really wanted to treat yourself then a few of these Stella Di Campalto bottles landed with us just before the new year. Both the Cielo and the 'VCLC’ are Brunello’s of sheer beauty. Impeccably handled grapes both in the vineyard and the cellar lead to quite literally some of the best wine money can buy. If you know, then you know. Start the new year as you mean to go on and all that…

    Enough chit-chat,

    Take it easy!