Well here we are, half term apparently. Not that it feels very different to last week. The kids are still helping themselves to food from the fridge at all times, endlessly asking where their clothes are before they’ve even checked the washing basket/their bedroom floor. Anyway, thank goodness for blue skies even if we can’t have a change of scene. Actually, having said that I’ve been going for a walk in the most beautiful vineyards in France every morning. Virtually, of course, via Instagram with winemaker Katie Jones. She’s been live-streaming her daily morning vineyard ramble and for fifteen minutes I lose myself in the vines, cup of tea in hand in a quiet house. Click here and follow Katie to join her, 7.30am UK time, every weekday morning. I’ve popped one of her wines in this week’s recommendations along with a knockout Tasmanian sparkling currently on offer in Waitrose. If you want the homemade Earl Grey Gin or Strawberry & Basil shrub recipe from last weekend’s Saturday Kitchen (see above!) click here. Hang on in there, winos x

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Current sparkling in the fridge: Jansz Premium Cuvée Brut

Price: £13.49 - Buy From Waitrose

Currently on offer with a whopping £4.50 off the normal price, this is a really fantastic traditional method (meaning made in the same way as champagne) sparkling wine from the cool climate of Tasmania. It’s a classic blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and manages to stuff both subtle red fruits and broken biscuits in the bottle. Gorgeous.

Current red in the rack: Domaine Jones Hairy Grenache

Price: £17.99 - Buy From Oxford Wine Company

Made from a grape called Lledoner Pelut in the Languedoc, nicknamed by Domaine Jones’ winemaker Katie Jones as Hairy Grenache owing to the hairy leaves on the vine. It’s a bit like Grenache – juicy, smooth – but lighter in style. Still packs a whack of alcohol at 14% but it’s more a loveable little (hairy) beast than a monster red. Barbecue food-friendly.


  • Joanna
    4 years ago

    Hi Helen
    Will you be doing a wine case again like you have in the past?

    • Helen McGinn
      4 years ago

      Hi Joanna, there might be a few left, I did a Bank Holiday Case with my local independent wine shop The Solent Cellar..drop them an email info@thesolentcellar.co.uk (and fingers crossed)!

  • 4 years ago

    Our chef (my wife) and I really enjoy your apparently unfailingly cheerful approach to life and wine. The last two Saturday Kitchen appearances were a perfect example, although, we are not fans of Rioja – too oaky for me in particular.

    Our “complaint” is that the wines recommended on Saturday Kitchen are rarely in Ireland . As you , and the programme , have many fans , would it be possible to include the occasional wine that can be purchased here.? No doubt your book does, but we haven’t bought it yet!!!

    The writers role in the Kitchen is mainly as a managerial overseer and taster!

    Please continue to cheer us all up !

    • Helen McGinn
      3 years ago

      Thank you Jeff, such kind words! I will do my best on both counts. Cheers!

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