My, how time flies. It’s School Fete time again and the ‘call to arms’ letter glares at me from beneath the fridge magnet, asking for cake & biscuit donations, scones for cream teas, unwanted toys for the toy stall, decorated jam jars filled with sweets and prizes for the tombola. Now, as some of you know, I have in the past resorted to the fake bake method, exploiting the known wine weaknesses enlisting the help of various family members who happen to be much better at baking than me. But this year I am going to make my own scones. I’ve never made them before so it is a somewhat high risk strategy, but I’ve checked the letter and we don’t have to put our names to them. Unless they are frickin’ awesome, in which case I’m naming my bag with a Sharpie.

Current white in the fridge: Tesco Finest Fiano 2012, £5.99 on offer, Tesco
If you like the ripe flavours of (mostly new world) Chardonnays, this is brilliant. Made from the Fiano grape, it’s from one of Sicily’s best of the big producers, Settesoli. And the island being kicked into the Med by the boot of Italy is really hot and steamy. Which means ripe grapes; which in turn means ripe flavours. Think peach with a pineapple twist. Put it with roast chicken that’s had a lemon up its backside and the world will seem a better place. 

Current red in the rack: Waitrose St Hallett Barossa Shiraz 2010, £10.99, Waitrose
This is a real smoothie. Except not so innocent. Made from the Shiraz grape (same as the Syrah grape in France), it’s from the Barossa Valley in South Australia, a region that does a great line in spicy, blackcurrant-loaded reds. St Hallett is a fantastic producer and if you really want to see just how intense Barossa Shiraz can be, try their Old Block Shiraz. It costs about £30, though. Which actually makes this one – made exclusively for Waitrose – really good value and a great way to see what all the fuss is about. Needs food. Lasagne especially good. 

Chin chin x

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  1. ha ha – In the same position at the moment! Try out a recipe for Guinness chocolate cake (Hummingbird bakery – available on the web). Not only is it easy to make and delicious, but there is half a can/bottle of Guinness left at the end in which to drown your sorrows/celebrate at success and has alcohol in it which everyone seems to expect when you work with wine/spirits!

  2. I think all primary schools around the country are in cahoots.. we have to provide the exact same thing in 'da Bush.. However scones are the easiest thing to make on the planet.. honest. Little M makes them in our house and she is 3. Good luck xx

  3. Buy Scone mix from any supermarket add milk, bake for 18 mins and no one will ever know the difference!! I just made 120 for Vicarage Garden open day and no-one outed me!!

  4. I'm with LRS, but add something a little more exotic like dried cherries instead of currants and then, keep mum!
    The Fiano sounds fantastic!

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