Martinborough morning walks are rainy (long awaited) and quiet on the silent streets
They say you should be careful what you wish for and it’s another of those truisms that I’ve got to admit has a disturbing ring to it. Much as I long to get stuck into learning how to make perfect pizza bases from scratch, more gardening and decluttering my life, I’m working because I hoped I’d be able to, so life does go on, even in lockdown. I’ve heard many writers around the world talk about how lockdown describes so much of their daily lives prior to the surreal situation we’re all facing right now. I can relate. Lockdown is a perfect description for what it’s like writing. So, due to writing a high volume yesterday, I mistakenly didn’t press publish on the latest wine to drink in lockdown. Here it is now.
Privat Rosé Brut Nature Cava $30.99
Cava is one of the greatest value for money traditional method bubblies in the world, made the same way as Champagne but typically aged for about half the time in bottle (9 months), so it retains yeasty flavours but they tend to taste lighter. This is an exception to that tendency – it’s bone dry, medium bodied and richly flavoursome, thanks to being made with two of the three Champagne grapes, Pinot Noir (which provides the pink colour) and Chardonnay. It’s available at specialist retailers and online at Regional Wines, which is delivering nationwide (and to which I work at part time as a wine adviser).
If it’s true that we only regret things we don’t do, then I really wish I’d bought more of this wine back when I first discovered it.
Luckily last week I bought a bottle before lockdown. I asked a close work colleague to add a mystery wine to a box of goodies I bought to see me through the lockdown and here it is. It’s been open a couple of days because, believe it or not, even when I’m in lockdown, I’m trying to keep a lid on how much wine I consume but given that this one tastes better each day, it suggests it could continue to age well for another five years, probably a lot longer.
I hope we can get the 2016 in New Zealand when the time comes because that vintage produced stunning wines in Europe.
Perfect wine match of day 5 in lock down
2015 Isole e Olena Chianti Classico DOCG $53.99
Isole e Olena was formed in the 1950s when two adjoining wine estates, Isole and Olena, were bought by the De Marchi family who combined them into one. This 45 estate is in the western part of the Chianti Classico DOCG and its vineyards grow at 350 to 450 metres above sea level, making it a relatively cooler part of the Chianti Classico zone. The elevation is the reason the vines benefit from cool sea breezes and the reason given for this wine’s supple, silky style, superb succulent acidity and lingering flavoursome finish.
Yes, it’s delicious…
I’ve been waiting for this day for months. Not the lockdown. The gin.
The perfect match for day four in lock down is Thomson Victor Kaffir Lime Gin with Schweppes Tonic.
We earned it by moving a massive slab of concrete around the garden and planting vegetables.
Moving to Martinborough two days before Christmas was one thing. The seductive allure of the land, sunshine and… a water ban were all at odds with my ideal life here – growing food. Today is the first we’ve been able to actually plant anything productive, only there was hardly anything at the garden centre when I went there last week to prepare for growing food, prior to lockdown. A few bits and pieces have gone in and it felt good to plant them.
When all is said and done, today was productive. The sun shone, the watering ban is gone and food is planted. I even sowed some beetroot seeds… and the Thomson Victor Kaffir Lime Gin is damned tasty.