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Press Release – Charity Wine Tasting November 24

October 26th, 2016

Red Nose Wine attracts exciting winemakers for charity wine tasting

Red Nose Wine has announced an exciting charity wine tasting will take place on Thursday, 24th of November at Raheen House Hotel in Clonmel, Co. Tipperary. Winemakers from Bodegas Sommos, Northern Spain, Chateau Viranel in Southern France and Champagne Duval-Leroy will all be present at the event showcasing some of their vineyards finest and sharing their stories. A representative from Liberty Wines, Red Nose Wine’s esteemed Italian Fine Wine import partner will also be showcasing the best of fine wines from Italy.

The team from Red Nose Wine will also be offering a large and diverse selection of wines and champagnes from their Christmas Collection for those in attendance. The event promises to be a great social event with an educational twist for those who want to learn a little or a lot while tasting on the night whilst raising much-needed funds for South Tipperary Hospice Movement.

Looking more closely at the winemakers in attendance, Bodegas Sommos is a unique vineyard in the Somontano D.O. located in Northern Spain. The winery has 350 hectares of vines spread over 5 vineyards. They like to experiment and use a wide variety of grapes including Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Grenache, and Pinot Noir to make their various red wines. Chardonnay and Gewurztraminer are used in their white selection.

Chateau Viranel will also be showcasing and although they have been making wine at Viranel in Saint Chinian since 1551, the vineyard has recently enjoyed a new lease of life as the next generation has taken over operations. Nicolas studied agronomy in Toulouse, travelled overseas to gain work experience in places as diverse as Peru, New Zealand, South Africa, Chile, and California. In 2003, Nicolas started overseeing the grape harvest at Viranel and Arnaud joined him in 2009, to handle sales and marketing.

Another family business, Champagne Duval-Leroy, has dedicated itself to the noble craft of champagne-making since 1859. Champagne pioneers, Duval-Leroy has always been driven by a quest for high standards and innovation in every aspect of the business, from quality, consistency and certification through to partnerships with sommeliers and chefs. It is a member of the very prestigious Relais & Chateaux partnership. Champagne Duval-Leroy have recently become the champagne of choice for the prestigious Cliff Group (who are also members of Relais & Chateaux), and their luxury hotels and restaurants in Ardmore, Co. Waterford, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin and the new Cliff at Lyons in County Kildare.

Gary Gubbins, Proprietor of Red Nose Wine commented “we have hand-picked these winemakers to attend as I feel they each bring a very different offering to the table. Champagne Duval-Leroy is a traditional champagne house and I think patrons should take advantage of the rare opportunity to taste Grand Cru champagne. Bodegas Sommos’ different approach to winemaking is fascinating and I expect people will be impressed by this experimental and innovative approach to the winemaking process. We have been working with Arnaud and Viranel for a number of years and I always look forward to meeting up with him. He is always full of infectious energy and has the gift of the gab that I think people will enjoy and it helps that he has super wines to boot.”

Tickets are €15 with all wines on the evening sponsored by Red Nose Wine to ensure maximum funds are generated for the charity. For further information and bookings visit www.rednosewine.com.

For further information contact:
Carey-Ann Lordan, Red PR
T: 052 6184343 M: 087 9270730 E: clordan@redpr.ie W: www.redpr.ie
Gary Gubbins, Red Nose Wine
T: 052 6182939 M: 086 3326486 E: gary@rednosewine.com W: www.rednosewine.com

Gary Gubbins proprietor of Red Nose Wine and organiser of the fundraising event

Gary Gubbins proprietor of Red Nose Wine and organiser of the fundraising event

Viranel owners Arnaud (left) and Nicholas (right) to showcase a selection of exciting wines, share their story and answer your questions at the tasting

Viranel owners Arnaud (left) and Nicholas (right) to showcase a selection of exciting wines, share their story and answer your questions at the tasting

South Tipperary Hospice Movement – Photo of their offices located on The Quay, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary

South Tipperary Hospice Movement – Photo of their offices located on The Quay, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary

About Red Nose Wine

Red Nose Wine specialises in importing wine of the highest quality from smaller and family run vineyards. There is a lot of very good wine at a very good price in the world, but it is often hidden within its locality, be it in a small country village in Piedmont, or just a few steps away from a very famous Bordeaux chateau. The same can be said of Spanish, New Zealand and Chilean wines, to name but a few. The wines with the biggest advertising budgets are rarely the best wines at the best price. Our winemaker’s skills lie more in wine making than marketing, which makes them that little bit harder to find. We believe wine should reflect the people who make it as much as the place where it comes from.

About South Tipperary Hospice Movement

South Tipperary Hospice Movement is a community specialist palliative care service, providing support for people in South Tipperary/West Waterford with an advanced incurable disease. They support patients and their families in their own home as far as possible. They aim to deliver the highest level of individualised care showing respect, compassion and dignity to all persons in their care. The aim of the specialist palliative homecare nursing service is to focus on the quality of life which includes good symptom control, a holistic approach that takes into account the person’s life experience and current situation, care that encompasses both the dying person and those who matter to that person, and an emphasis on open and sensitive communication, which extends to patients, carers and professionals. They endeavour to provide a seamless system of care for patients and relatives from the time of diagnosis of cancer / motor neurone disease to death or discharge from the service.

The Winemakers

Winemakers from Bodegas Sommos, Northern Spain, Chateau Viranel in Southern France and Champagne Duval-Leroy will all be present at the event showcasing some of their vineyards finest and sharing their stories. We will also have our old friend Gerry from Liberty Wines, our esteemed Italian Fine Wine import partner, to showcase the best of fine wines from Italy.

Bodegas Sommos

Bodegas Sommos is a unique vineyard in the Somontano D.O. located in Northern Spain. The winery has 350 hectares of vines spread over 5 vineyards. They like to experiment and use a wide variety of grapes including Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Grenache, and Pinot Noir to make their various red wines. Chardonnay and Gewurztraminer are used in their white selection.
Since Red Nose Wine have introduced the range to Ireland, they have become a firm favourite with the press and the public.
Website: http://www.bodegasommos.com/

Chateau Viranel

Although they have been making wine at Viranel in Saint Chinian since 1551, the vineyard has recently enjoyed a new lease of life as the next generation has taken over operations.
Arnaud (photographed on the left) was big into sports and it looked as though he was going to become a sports teacher. Nicolas studied agronomy in Toulouse, travelled overseas to gain work experience in places as diverse as Peru, New Zealand, South Africa, Chile and California.
In 2003, Nicolas started overseeing the grape harvest at Viranel and two years later, he moved in and made it his home. Arnaud joined him in 2009, handling the sales and marketing side of the equation, and the rest is history.
“Today, working together, we’re writing a new chapter in the story of Viranel. We like to think that by combining our skills, energy and enthusiasm with the heritage that’s been handed down to us, we can bring something new to the table.” said the dynamic duo.
Website: http://www.viranel.com/en/home.html

Champagne Duval-Leroy

Another family business, this house has dedicated itself to the noble craft of champagne-making since 1859. Champagne pioneers, Duval-Leroy have always been driven by a quest for high standards and innovation in every aspect of the business, from quality, consistency and certification through to partnerships with sommeliers and chefs. It is a member of the very prestigious Relais & Chateaux partnership. Champagne Duval-Leroy have recently become the champagne of choice for the prestigious Cliff Group (who are also members of Relais & Chateaux), and their luxury hotels and restaurants in Ardmore, Co. Waterford, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin and the new Cliff at Lyons in County Kildare.
Website: http://www.duval-leroy.com/en/home/

Charity Wine Tasting Event for South Tipperary Hospice Movement (STHM)

Date: Thursday, 24th of November 2016
Time: 7.30pm – 9.30pm
Location: Raheen House, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary
Members of the public are invited to purchase tickets for the wine tasting in support of South Tipperary Hospice Movement. The timing is ideal as this event is the start of the pre-Christmas party season and a great time to get your Christmas wines selected in good time for the big day. There will be competitions and much more on the evening also. Tickets must be purchased in advance and early booking is advised.

Tickets

Tickets are superb value at €15 with all wines being sponsored by Red Nose Wine to ensure maximum funds are generated for South Tipperary Hospice Movement on the night. To book online please visit www.rednosewine.com and tickets are also available from the South Tipperary Hospice Movement Office on The Quay, Red Nose Wine, The Regal Centre and Marian’s Bookshop, O’Connell Street, Clonmel. Tickets are also widely available throughout county Tipperary from STHM Support Group and usual STHM ticketing outlets.

Annual Wine Tasting – Saturday Dec 5th

November 24th, 2015

We are having our annual portfolio tasting / wine Fair on Saturday December 5th in the shop.

It will run from 5pm to 7pm – what a great way to start a Saturday night out in December. This year we have decided that in lieu of an entry fee, we will offer people the chance to donate to the Hospice. We’ll have a few buckets around and people can donate as they see fit. We will supply some fantastic wines to try and loosen your charity urges.

Sth Tipp Hospice

Christmas-Wine-Tasting

We will have a range of wines open at all price points. We will also have our wide array of Christmas Gifts on show and available to purchase.

For those of you going out after, and who want to take advantage of the special offers on the night, don’t worry. We have a system that allows you to buy at the special price and collect it later. If you buy enough, we might even deliver :)

Traditionally we would have charged €15 for a ticket OR given FREE entry with a €50 voucher. This year we are going to make it free for subscribers of the newsletter, Twitter followers and FaceBook fans.  BUT, and this is important, you must book in advance

wine-tasting2

Hope to see you there. Taste before you Buy this Christmas. You can also grab our brochure on the night ( LOADS of offers and Gift ideas )

For details of the offers available this year, as well as mixed cases, click here.

Rudolph’s Red Nose Christmas Wine Fair

November 19th, 2013

Hold on to your boots and get your glad rags a ready. Red Nose Wine is having a party – a Wine Tasting, Tapas eating Christmas Wine Fair style party.

Not only that, we will be doing some one night only offers ( for one night only ) on that one night.

Christmas-Wine-Fair

On Thursday December 5th at 7.30pm we will open many many wines and we will toast Christmas and we hope you can come down to the new shop. ( We’re nearly there 6 months so we really need to stop calling it that ).

Anyway, Tipperary Food Producer Nuala Hickey is going to put some great Tapas style food to go with all the wines we will have open.

Glasses

Tickets are €15 or Free with one of our Special €50 Wine Fair vouchers. So if you are intending to spend €50 or more on wine this Christmas, its free. I hope that makes sense. You can buy the €15 tickets here and the €50 vouchers here. Alternatively call to the shop and book there.

It promises to be a great night and we are going to have a great selection open, including some of the many wines were putting on offer this Christmas.

Be sure to pick up our new free Christmas a brochure – if you can’t call to get one, let us know and we will post one out.

Hope to see on the 5th.

Life is Much too Short to Drink Bad Wine

Portfolio-Tasting-A1-sign-450pix

Back in the Saddle again – the return of the Articles

April 5th, 2013

“It’s been a long time since Rock’n’Roll” – Sing that in a high pitched voice and insert a Jimmy Page guitar riff and you have a classic Led Zeppelin song. While I have in fact recently listened to some Rock’n’Roll on my new turntable ( Christmas present ), I am referring to the fact that it has been a long time since I presented an article for your delectable critique.

The post budget blues

You may have thought I have been curled up in a ball in a dark room rocking to and fro in shock from the 41% excise duty increase in December. Tempting as that solution might be, I decided to focus on improving on the great gains we made in 2012. Onwards and upwards and the search for newer wines is in full flight. As I write this three new wines arrived into the shop today, and there are loads more on the horizon.

I have been very busy looking at every wine we currently stock and seeing if it has a future or not. There are many criteria needed for a wine to stay in the Red Nose family and many will not survive but the good news is that makes room for more wines. These are strange times we live in and when you are asking people to part with money, you really have to consistently over deliver on the quality and value offering.

With that in mind, this last month saw us throw out the old to make way for the new. Our Pick-A-Dot Sale cleared out a lot of wines at up to 50% off and this allows room for the newer wines that have been exciting us to shine. There is still a little bit left, but not a lot. To make up for it, we have introduced a new mix case for €50 that is proving very popular.

WIne courses and dinners

Last October we held our first wine course and it was a huge success. After 5 weeks of tasting, swirling, spitting, swallowing and listening to me waffle on about wines, we held our last night in the StoneHouse restaurant’s private dining room and matched their fantastic tasting menu to some great wines.

The good news is that we are currently finalizing plans for another wine course. This time we are looking at a few different options. We plan to repeat the classic 5 week course on a Thursday night but we are also looking at a slimmed down ½ day version, more than likely at the weekend. Depending on interest, we have also investigated the possibility of some Magical Mystery Tours. This basically means a mini bus, a foodie destination with lots of wine to match. You do the drinking, we organize the driving.

If any of you are interested in Top End Bordeaux wines, you might want to get in contact with me. I have been offered some seriously good value on some of the very best wines in the world. I am talking about the top end wines for putting down, but at a fraction of the normal price. We are still talking about €30 a bottle and a minimum case purchase. Contact me directly at info@rednosewine.com if you want more details.

Smelling Swooshing and Spitting

A wine merchants calendar after the busy period that was Christmas is busier than you would think. Its not all accounts and stocktaking though. Traditionally this time of year we get invited to all manner of tastings. Last week I took the train to Dublin and was let loose on 256 wines from an importer I work with. Smell, Look, swish, inhale and spit. And so it went – whites first and then another lap of the hall to get the reds in. Experience has taught me to leave those big Barolos until the end. One is almost tempted to forget to spit those wines.

At this stage we import over 90% of our wines directly from small, large and in-between vineyards from all over the world, so the Irish trade tastings are not going to get you those real value driven wines or those little magical small vineyards that make this job so special. The do however serve a purpose and some of our favourite Italian wines ( such as Allegrini ) come via this route.

Later this month I am flying to Germany for the best Wine Trade show in Europe – ProWein. This will have vineyards from all over the world showing off their wares in 8 massive halls in the vast and very impressive Dusseldorf Messe convention centre.

Ireland really missed a trick not building one of these during the boom years. The Germans may not know much about debt relief but they sure know how to organize a trade fair. I’ve been to shows in France, Italy and London and this is by far the best. Hopefully, I’ll be writing about the wines I found soon

Are there Horses in Spain?

I think that Spain will become more and more important in the Irish wine world. It still has loads of great value regions that are unknown and very well priced. The punters in Cheltenham always look for value and sometimes a great Bordeaux at €30 can be great value and a €9 special offer wine is a waste of money. It is all about perspective. But I think regions like Navarra and Valencia offer true value when compared to Rioja and Ribero and we hope to find more at ProWein.

By the time this article goes to press, Cheltenham will be over and I’ll know how much value I managed to squeeze from the Tipsters draw in Careys and Dalys. In my experience value and Cheltenham do not go hand in hand. However I still smile when I remember shouting War of Attrition home in the Gold Cup. I met Mouse Morris about 6 months before and he said he thought the horse was a superstar. My little ante post wager came in at very nice odds. Let’s hope my trip to ProWein brings home a few winners as well.

As always, there is more information on the blog at www.rednosewine.com/blog or follow the ranting on Twitter – www.twitter.com/rednosewine

For anyone who would like more information and can’t make it into the shop, please feel free to contact me at href=”mailto:info@rednosewine.com”>info@rednosewine.com

“Life is much too short to drink bad wine”

Sam Neill and his trip to Tipp

November 4th, 2012

Irish born Kiwi Sam Neill is on his way to Tipperary for a whistle stop tour to promote his wonderful Central Otago wines. He will be out in McCarthys of Fethard at 2pm for a quick meet & greet followed by a reception in Red Nose Wine in Clonmel at 4pm. As well as Sam’s wines, there will also be some local Tipperary Food on offer, courtesy of James Whelan Butchers, as well as some delicious Cooleeney Farm cheese.

Meet-Sam-Neill

Sam is more well known for his acting and has appeared in such films and TV shows as Jurassic Park, Kane & Abel, The Omen, Dead Calm, The Hunt for Red October, The Piano, The Simpsons, The Tudors among many more. He is becoming very well known for his wines however and we are delighted to be importing them into Ireland.

snowy

Ireland is a place the Hollywood star holds close to his heart. Only in October past he visited his old home place in the North, where he lived until he was 7. His Irish roots still firmly intact, he recently claimed, “I got an Irish passport the other day. I love it. It’s the best thing in my pocket.”

Why not take a nice tour of the chateau with the proprietor himself …

If you would like to call on Wednesday at 4pm to Red Nose Wine to meet Sam, send us an email or drop us a line at 052-6182939 so we can have enough food. All lovers of great wine are welcome.

Red Nose Wine Portfolio Tasting Dec 8th

November 17th, 2011

Red Nose Wine are delighted to announce a portfolio tasting for Thursday December 8th at Hickeys Cafe at the historic Westgate in Clonmel. We will open a large selection of wines in a social atmosphere. We will have some food to allow you time to gather your strength to taste through all of the wonderful wines.

Tasting-Poster

There is no need to sit and listen to me or someone else waffle about wine. This is less talky more drinky.
The wines will be open and we are encouraging a social atmosphere on the night.

A Taste to Savour this Christmas at Red Nose Wine

A Taste to Savour this Chrismtas at Red Nose Wine

We will update this list on Facebook and Twitter as we add wines to the list.

We will take recomendations as well, so let us know what you want to taste and if is possible, we will open it…

When Rachel Allen met Red Nose Wine

October 18th, 2011

Red Nose Wine had the great pleasure of visiting Ballymaloe House recently for a photoshoot with Rachel Allen and our friend Michael Kane from Curious Wines. Colm McCan, Ballymaloe’s Tipperary born sommelier gave us a great welcome.

It was all to publicize our upcoming tastings / wine dinner with Samuel Guibert of Mas de Daumas Gassac on Thursday Ocotber 20th in Inch House and Friday in Ballymaloe. Details of which are here

Here are some of the pictures.

This wine lark is great fun

This wine lark is great fun

Picking a nice wine for dinner

Picking a nice wine for dinner

Dinner in the wine cellars of Ballymaloe

Dinner in the wine cellars of Ballymaloe

winemaking  pic1.jpg

Cheers

Cheers

Article – Wine Aromas and Love

February 18th, 2011

I suppose there is only one thing to discuss this week – the candidates for the upcoming election. Only joking. I would not subject you to that, and I really wouldn’t know what to say. There is a lot I would like to say, but there is a Clonmel man who writes very well on the subject for the Sunday Business Post so we will leave it to Pat.

Hands up in you Hate this!

We will discuss love and all of its promises. Much like an expensive wine, sometimes it can promise much but deliver little. Oh cynical little me – blame it on the terrible film with the dancing Prime Minister, “Love Actually”. We’ll talk about the expensive bottles in this little comparison and let us forget about Hugh Grant and that lady who used to be in EastEnders.

In case you haven’t guessed, Valentine’s Day is the subject of this article and we will weave the beauty of wine through the mystery of love and see what kind of an omelette we can create. In case you are wondering I am not writing with a glass in hand. I just feel like waxing lyrical. Let us tarry not, yet progress to the romance and the grape.

20% Off Rose & Bubbly until end February

20% Off Rose & Bubbly until end February

Rosé – You know you want it

Rosé is an obvious choice for a tipple to share with the better half and of course sparkling Rosé is even more tempting. Samuel Johnson memorably quipped “The feeling of friendship is like that of being comfortably filled with roast beef; love, like being enlivened with champagne.”

Rose

Rose

All manner of terribly wonderful things happen under the influence of the bubbles.

However, we are still in winter ( regardless of what some might say about Spring ) and red is the colour of love and also of wine to drink by the fire. As we get a glimmer of hope that Spring might be coming, it’s the last of the choc ices and in this instance, the choc ices are big spicy Reds.

A little Pepper ?

Shiraz is great for a night in by the fire as it normally has a little pepper to it and is rich and warm and cosy. One should be cosy on Valentines night. I need to be careful what I write here as it is very easy to be inappropriate and I need to remember my audience. “Hello Mrs. Byrne”. “That’s not what I meant”. “I was talking about other people”. “I really was talking about wine”.

There has been research carried by Dr. Max Lake that the aromas of certain wines can spark arousal. This is very sensitive and powerful information and if I print it, Mrs. Byrne could be proven right. The theory is that certain wine aromas can replicate the scents of human pheromones (which signal attraction in the brain).

Do you want the theory behind it or a list of the wines? We live in a fast moving world and my gut tells me to list the wines, but the engineer in me really wants to tell you why. To quote Ferris Bueller “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Let’s look around for a minute.

 

My compromise is that I will give a one line explanation and then list some of the wines. “In general, Lake found that the earthy scents of red wines (like leathery, musky, etc.) come most close to resembling male pheromones. Female pheromones are best represented by the earthy side (sweaty, yeasty, doughy, etc.), in white and sparkling wines.” That wasn’t too painful now, was it?

Romantic Wines

According to my source, some wines to consider for your little romantic night could include Pinot Noir, Saint Julien Bordeaux (Cabernet blend), French Syrah or Italian Valpolicella style wines in Red. The whites recommended included an oaked Chardonnay and a New Zealand Riesling. The last wine suggested was a Rosé Champagne (what else would it be?). The full list, the wines themselves and the link to the article are available in Red Nose Wine.

One can of course be very obvious and share a bottle of Chateau Valentine, which I do believe is sold in Clonmel and online and is very reasonably priced. If you don’t stay in then enjoy the night out and remember my tips as you look over the wine list.

Peppa Pig and vomiting baby

You should always remember where this romance can lead and as I started this article late on a Wednesday I was interrupted by a vomiting 2 year old who then came down stairs and in between pukes, tried to get me to put Peppa Pig on the laptop. As much as I like Peppa, I really have seen every episode many times, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I knew there was a good reason to buy all of that Champagne when I lived in France.

 

To all of the mortgage laden couples with small children. Enjoy the stolen kisses between Peppa Pig and Ben & Holly, and when the kids are asleep, open up that special bottle and sit back and enjoy Valentine’s Day. We deserve it more than most.

Don’t forget to log onto the blog at www.rednosewine.com/blog or follow the ranting on Twitter – www.twitter.com/rednosewine

Please have a look at our Facebook site and ‘Like’ Us so we can share all the photos with you. Feel free to share this page with your friends and enemies.

For anyone who would like more information and can’t make it into the shop, please feel free to contact me at info@rednosewine.com

“Life is much too short to drink bad wine”

Article – How Old is Too Old?

February 4th, 2011

When I sit down to write the article, the final piece of the jigsaw is usually the title. I reread the article and try to pick a title that reflects the content but might get people intrigued enough to stop them going straight to Pat’s Food column. This week, the title came first and stems from an incident in Dublin last weekend.

A Birthday at Ely

I was doubling up business and pleasure last weekend in our nation’s capital and Sunday and Monday were about meetings and a New Zealand wine tasting event. Saturday was about my birthday and a good meal and a sublime bottle of wine. I spent a great evening in Ely Bar who have 550 bottles of wine on their list. I was on a wine trip with Anthony, the manager, last September and had promised to drop in. If you are looking for a great night out in Dublin with great food and wine, I can highly recommend Ely.

Anthony among the wines on Liberty Wines Italy Trip Sep 2010

Anthony among the wines on Liberty Wines Italy Trip Sep 2010

Famous Blue Raincoat

Recommendations aside, after a long night, myself and my wife were walking down a wet and windy Grafton Street at about 1.30 in the morning. I was wearing a coat I get frequent abuse over. It is a long raincoat that apparently makes me look much older than I am. All I know is that it keeps me dry.

 

As we walked down the cobbles, I heard two homeless men shout from behind me. “Look at yer wan with the auld fella. He’s old enough to be her Da”. While I realise the grey hair, need of a haircut and the overindulgence that night did not help my appearance, I took immediate offence. My wife on the other hand started to laugh and was reflecting in the glow of their compliment on how well she looked.

I gave them one of ‘These’

The correct thing to do would be to walk on, but I found myself stopping, turning and shouting back to the gentlemen of leisure, “Are you familiar with the Horse Outside video?”. They responded that they were, so in the spirit on that video, “I gave them one of ‘these’”. You’ll have to watch the video (over 18s only) to see what ‘These’ are. In fact, I gave them numerous ones and did a little jig as I delivered ‘them’. As I was in mid jig with fingers flying, it suddenly dawned on me that they could react.

 

They stared back in shock and I turned and did that walk that is nearly a run and got out of there very quickly. I am not condoning my reaction but you must understand the embarrassment after they questioned my age. It was my birthday after all. As I reflected on it the following morning, I thought up the title for this article. How old is too old?

I’m saving the Vin de Table for a special occasion

Of course I am talking about wine, and it is a question I get asked a lot. How long will a bottle of wine last? I remember finding a bottle of Spanish Table Wine in my parents’ house that was dated 1985 and they were ‘saving’ it. I can very safely predict that the bottle was undrinkable before the end of the eighties. I am sure that many a holidaymaker is harbouring similar treasures across the utility rooms of Ireland.

Like many of the truths in wine, it very often ( but not always ) comes down to money. If the wine is purchased for under 10 Euros, then you are looking at anything between 2 and 5 years maximum, but in many cases, the wine will be made for early drinking so try to enjoy it in that first 2 years if you can. The fruit will be to the front and will very often be the point of the wine. There may be nothing to wait for.

I’d love some Condrieu

Reds last longer than white. Is this fact or fiction? It is in fact fiction, and some of the great aging wines of the world are white (think German Riesling, Rhone Valley Condrieu). However, these wines are very expensive and the wines that most of us buy are meant to be consumed early. There is a startling statistic that the average time between wines being purchased in Ireland and opened is measured in hours, not days.

The things that will keep a wine alive are the quality of the fruit, the level of acidity and the balance in the wine. There is also the grape variety as some grapes are made to be aged and some are made to be drunk early. Cabernet Sauvignon from France can be quite tannic in its youth and will benefit from age, but Chilean Cabernet is much softer and often a little sweeter. This should be drunk young.

If you ever taste good Nebbiolo it will be terribly difficult in the first few years but with age it can become spectacular. However, I can remember nearly ever bottle of Barolo and Barbaresco that I sell so for the purpose of a wider audience, we will assume the wines we are talking about fit into the sub 12 Euros bracket.

Tick Tock … Tick Tock

There are still a lot of 2008 Whites drinking very well and some 2007 wines are holding their own. Anything older and you may really need to look at the country, the winemaker and more importantly the wine merchant. There are good bargains to be had sub 12 Euros from merchants making room and clearing 20 Euro bottles of 2005 and 2006 whites that are still drinking very well.

Beware wines of an older vintage that are not discounted because they may well have been meant to be drunk already. The southern hemisphere has its harvest early in the year, so a 2010 Australian wine is older than a 2010 Italian wine.

Wines that are past their best are not bad for you, but they don’t taste great. Wine has one ultimate destiny if it is not consumed and that is to become vinegar. That is a reality and I know many a person who got caught at the ferry ports of northern France with ‘bargain’ wines. If you pour it down the sink the price is irrelevant.

A 1920’s Wine

The Reds will hold a bit longer but unless it is at the higher end, I would start to ask questions on anything pre 2005, unless of course it has been discounted back in good faith. I was at a party a few weeks ago and the host had a bottle of 1962 Pomerol open. I can’t tell you I tasted it as I did not, but it smelt great. I have tasted 50 year old wines and another importer I do a bit of work with got a present of a wine from the 1920s which he opened on Christmas Day and by all accounts it was as fresh as a daisy.

old wine bottle

I hope the homeless men of Grafton Street are warm and safe and keeping their comments to themselves. While my hair is greying slightly, it is still very much intact and I’ll suffer a few grey hairs above losing them. I should really take their comment as a compliment for how young my wife looks. As Groucho Marx once said, “you are only as old as the woman you are feeling”. Of course she may not be talking to me after this article.

 

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“Life is much too short to drink bad wine”

Article – A Tipperary Taste of Provence

November 15th, 2010

Red Nose for the The Frontline

This is the second attempt at this article. When I wrote the first, it was on the back of hitting a creative wall and not knowing what to talk about. Inspiration, for use of a better word dragged me into a political and social rant. I will shelve that article and save the argument for when Pat or Miriam ask me to rant in the centrally approved forum that is RTE 1. Until that happens, I will bring you sunshine and rainbows with a side of wonderful wine.

Pat Kenny tries to get Red Nose Wine on the show !!!

Pat Kenny tries to get Red Nose Wine on the show !!!

Tipp Food goes on and on

If you buy the paper on Wednesday you are no doubt very excited about tonight’s Tipperary Food Producers Extravaganza. If it is later in the week, you are in awe of the wonderful food (and wine) on your doorstep and can’t wait to tell everyone about it. Alternatively, you missed the show and are avoiding all of your friends who were there, as they keep reminding you of how good it was. Wherever you fit in this little jigsaw please keep local business in your thoughts this Christmas. We need your support.

Jane Boyce MW and Pat Whelan discuss wines to go with Pat's recipes.

Jane Boyce MW and Pat Whelan discuss wines to go with Pat's recipes.


The Twitterati and Food Connect Program cover the Food Extravaganza

There are even more events to look forward to in the run up to Christmas. I had lunch last week with Gay McGuiness, the Kilkenny man who owns Domaine des Anges, the organic vineyard that lies in beautiful Provence, just over the hill from Chateauneuf du Pape. We are delighted to announce that the winemaker, Ciaran Rooney will be visiting Clonmel on November 24th and taking part in a wine dinner in Befanis.

Domaine des Anges Dinner Poster

Domaine des Anges Dinner Poster

Kilkenny & Tipperary meet again

Myself and Fulvio have been trying to organise a wine dinner for a long time, so I am delighted that it is with one of my own personal favourites. Places are limited and selling very well so if you want 5 different wines and a 4 course dinner for only 45 Euros, please contact Red Nose Wine or Befanis to get your ticket. There will be special prizes on the night as well.

I wrote about my visit there this summer, and will not wax lyrical about the room with the view this time. I will talk more about the wines and why they are constantly being reviewed as among the very best in France. Tomas Clancy gave them a huge write up in last week’s Sunday Business Post (although he forget to mention Red Nose Wine), and Oz Clarke has them in his 250 Great Wines book every year. My old friend Jancis Robinson is also a big fan.

Gary Gubbins of Red Nose Wine with Gay McGuiness at Domaine des Anges

Gary Gubbins of Red Nose Wine with Gay McGuiness at Domaine des Anges

As well as the quality, the most consistent message from them all is the value. These are very well priced and if you don’t want to pay for Chateauneuf du Pape or White Burgundy, then you would do a lot worse than try these. They have been one of my big success stories this last year.

Some Tasting Notes

The Reds are based around Syrah and Grenache, the classic Rhone Valley varieties. The Classic cuvee (i.e. the cheap one) is dominated by Grenache just like its illustrious neighbour in Chateauneuf. The nose is a mix of raspberries, cranberries, chocolate, and liquorice with subtle notes of thyme and rosemary. But will we like it Gary? I believe that you will if you like full bodied wine with a long silky finish. I think it tastes much better when decanted and there is not a lot of 12 Euro wines you can say that about.

Domaine des Anges

Domaine des Anges

The L’Archange Red is a huge step up in quality and this Syrah dominated wine from old vines is a star. A Northern Rhone Syrah is one of the iconic wines in the world and usually has an iconic price to match. The likes of Jaboulet La Chapelle can put you back some serious money. The L’Archange is under twenty and offers spices such as nutmeg and clove complete with ripe blackcurrant and plum on the nose. The palette explodes with rich, ripe fruit and a refreshing note of lemon thyme all supported by spicy tannins. The finish is full, round and lingers long in the mouth. I cannot wait to try this with Befanis fillet of beef on November 24th.


 

Del Boy Trotter’s favourite wine

While comparisons with its Fancy Dan Red Wine neighbour over the hill are the most obvious, the critics would tell you that the real stars are the white wines. Tomas Clancy from the Sunday Business Post thoughts is closest to my own on the top wine. “For me, the star of Domaine des Anges, it makes only 750 cases a year as it is a single vineyard wine. Barrel-fermented Rousanne, letting the wine sit on its lees, and ageing in oak provides the kinds of kid-glove treatment you expect of a flashy and expensive Burgundy”. High praise indeed. This is an allocation wine for me. That means I can only get a very small amount every year. I have six cases to get me to the next vintage. We’ll drink at least one of those at the dinner, so hurry up.

 The Hills are Alive…. with Acidity

White wine from Provence is not supposed to taste like this, and the reason that it does? The vineyard is situated on a hillside facing Mont Ventoux, “The Giant of Provence”, which rises to 1912m in altitude. The mountain has a profound influence on the climate of the vineyards with cool evening breezes refreshing the vines in summer after the day’s intense heat, and so enabling the vines to maintain high natural acids and elegant tannins.

In fact, the best white wines from traditionally warm parts of the world nearly always share this altitude and cooling effect. The great white wines of the Loire Valley and Burgundy are much more northern so the climate gives them this coolness that acidity demands.

 Hollywood is coming

As I write this, tomorrow sees another new wine departing the vineyard for Red Nose Wine. I wrote about Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s vineyard in Provence earlier this year and I am delighted to say that the wonderful Chateau Miraval is on the way. This is another Provence wine that sits high up in the hills, beside my old favourite Chateau Margui. I am delighted that Ciaran Rooney will be the star of Red Nose Wine’s first wine dinner and we are planning more. Will Brad and Angelina attend one of these? If they do, it will be first refusal for the people who attend the other ones.

Chateau Miraval

Chateau Miraval

If you want to taste Domaine des Anges but can’t make the dinner, don’t forget we are having our very first portfolio tasting in Hickeys Cafe at the Westgate in Clonmel on December 9th. There won’t be the usual winemaker talk and taste format. We will have a huge amount of wines open and it will be very informal as you taste what you want in a very social atmosphere. There will be food and maybe even some music – I will need to restring my guitar. I will have everything opened from the 8 Euro everyday wines to the seriously complex superstar wines. Book your tickets now.

Don’t forget to log onto the blog at www.rednosewine.com/blog or follow the ranting on Twitter – www.twitter.com/rednosewine

Please have a look at our Facebook site and ‘Like’ Us so we can share all the photos with you. Feel free to share this page with your friends and enemies.

For anyone who would like more information and can’t make it into the shop, please feel free to contact me at info@rednosewine.com

“Life is much too short to drink bad wine”

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