A LITTLE WINE - EEEEEEEEE!
It is pretty well known amongst my chums that I, to quote Bernard Shaw "like a drop in" now and again and can often be found sitting at a bar in the wee small hours, in my cups and telling anyone who will listen " I am not a happy man"
As the gods have seen kind enough to bless my wallet with a little more fruit over the years, I have begun to develop a taste for what my father calls "vino collapso" and am slowly building up a collection both at home and increasingly at the office ( current tally, three cases of wine under my desk - it's good to be a publisher where this is not only tolerated but actively encouraged )
I have been known to pop into Majestic and Oddbins from time to time, but, more than ever, I am buying my wine from that hotbed of oenoculture, Padstow in Cornwall.
Why Cornwall? I know, I know. It is a place where it is almost compulsory to marry ones sister and to attend a black mass at least once a month. However, via various food boards I have been lucky enough to encounter a gentleman known to one and all as " Slacker" In reality a Fotherington Thomas-a-like called David who forgets more about wine in a minute than I will ever know.
He runs an exemplary wineshop and bar in Padstow and has a wine club that allows him to ship wine all over the country.
This time, he put together a case of lighter reds for me
2003 Chinon Domaine De Beausejour
2003 Cuvee Les Duex Papis Bourgogne
2003 Neudorf Pinot Noir ( South Island NZ)
2001 Raimat Abadia
2001 Vereto Salice Salentino
2003 Capitel Della Crosara Valpolicella
2003 Chateau de Pennautier ( syrah )
None of which I would be able to find at the usual suspects and all of which, on past successes will be much enjoyed.
Bizarrely, it actually works out a lot cheaper this way to buy interesting stuff. So, if you are pondering on the grape and fancy something different sold by a man thinks rowing is a sport, call and ask for David. mention my name and I am sure he will add 20% on to the price.
While we are on the subject of padstow. It is, of course, the home of innumerable outlets of Rick Stein's. However, I think there is only one place worthy of visit in that lovely little town and that is Margot's
The chef, Adrian, is a cook who values the taste of the ingredients more than the chance to show off his own talents and my one meal there, amongst a trip that included meals at two 1* places ( Ripley's and The Black Pig ) was a highlight. So, if you do go down to visit The Seafood restaurant, do make sure you go here, IF you can get a table.
It will not have been a trip to Padstow without a visit to either of these all too rare establishments