So, things are bonkers but – thank goodness – we have wine. Supermarket shelves might be looking a little depleted in places but there are plenty of brilliant independent wine merchants still delivering (check out this list if you’re looking for one). Some are offering great deals including discounts for NHS staff and pledging to make charitable donations for every order received. Another great initiative is #theBIGenglishwinegoodfriday happening this Friday, 10th April at 7pm. The idea came from winemaker Jacob Leadley (he makes fabulous English sparkling wines) who figured that if as many of us as possible order a bottle direct from our local vineyard for a virtual tasting it’ll go some way to help an industry hit hard by the C-word. So I’ll be there, glass in hand, on Friday. Here’s hoping you can (virtually) join me.
Current sparkling in the rack: Black Chalk Classic
Price: £35.00 - Buy From blackchalkwine.co.uk
One of the brightest stars on the English sparkling wine scene, Black Chalk is the brand created by winemaker Jacob Leadley. This one’s made from a blend of Hampshire-grown grapes including all three of the classic champagne varieties. A small part of the blend is fermented in oak barrels adding a bit more oomph. But it’s still deliciously light on its feet, all citrus and crushed biscuits. A real treat.
Current red in the rack: Felicette Grenache Noir
Price: £8.99 - Buy From The Solent Cellar
I swear it’s not just the cats in spacesuits that make me love this wine so much. OK, maybe a little. But the wine inside is fantastic, one of the most bright, juicy, joyous (not to mention more-ish) reds to have around at the moment. From the Languedoc, it’s made mostly from the Grenache grape along with a dash of Syrah and Mourvedre. Purr-fect.