Drink

The horror of gluten-free beer

14 May 2022 9:00 am

I was reminded of the worst liquid that I have ever consumed. It was the last occasion on which I…

A taste of la dolce vita in Tuscany

30 April 2022 9:00 am

Amid the grandeur of old Edinburgh, in the lee of the castle, is one of the finest buildings in Scotland:…

The wine of the Wild Geese

16 April 2022 9:00 am

The Irish rarely understate their achievements. Yet there is one exception. Over the centuries, the links between Catholic Ireland and…

War, wine and the brilliance of Beychevelle

2 April 2022 9:00 am

If only toasts and good wishes were weapons of war. At every serious repast I have attended since the invasion…

A toast to the platonic ideal of diplomatic intellect

19 March 2022 9:00 am

My dear friend Richard Stow is a most congenial fellow. A serious financial entrepreneur, he is also a clubman and…

The story of Tuscany’s all-female winery

5 March 2022 9:00 am

The inhabitants of Tuscany and Umbria can claim to be the most civilised beings on the planet, even exceeding the…

A toast to Victorian Britain

19 February 2022 9:00 am

Across oceans and continents, less favoured nations produce more history than they can consume. In these islands, the English —…

Why Sardinian wine is one to watch

5 February 2022 9:00 am

The larger islands of the Mediterranean all have their glories. Fought over for millennia, they now seem to have attained…

A magnificent malt worthy of Burns

22 January 2022 9:00 am

The bleak midwinter. Actually, since I wallowed in curmudgeonly complaints about dreich days, everything has improved. Clear blue skies, pleasing…

A rioja to beat the new year blues

8 January 2022 9:00 am

There was only one flaw in my Christmas this year. I did not spend enough of it with Santa Claus-age…

The promise of South Africa

18 December 2021 9:00 am

‘Earth has not anything to show more fair.’ One can admire the view from Westminster Bridge and feel near the…

Raising a glass to Grey Gowrie

4 December 2021 9:00 am

A group of us had gathered together to raise a glass, tell stories, to laugh and to mourn. It was…

The heady Heights of Israeli wine

20 November 2021 9:00 am

‘Where is this from?’ my friend asked, handing me a wine glass. It was a Cabernet Sauvignon, high in alcohol,…

Is it worth gambling on supermarket wine bargains?

6 November 2021 9:00 am

Rich men often look out for bargains. I suppose that is why they are rich. But there can be problems.…

Vega Sicilia: the best Spanish wine I have ever tasted

23 October 2021 9:00 am

Four hundred and fifty years ago this month, a great victory helped to safeguard European civilisation. The battle of Lepanto…

Is this Greece’s finest wine since Homer strummed his lyre?

9 October 2021 9:00 am

We were in deepest Dorset, l’Angleterre profonde. The weather was also typically English: inundations followed by counter-attacks from the Indian…

The wonder of Lebanese wine

25 September 2021 9:00 am

In the Levant, the grape has been cultivated for millennia, some of it used for wine. The hills of Lebanon…

Spain vs Italy: who would win the wine Test?

11 September 2021 9:00 am

In London, the weather is a gentle sashaying mockery. An Indian summer reminds us of the sullen apology of summer…

In turbulent times, there’s sherry

28 August 2021 9:00 am

I sometimes wander through Trafalgar Square in the small hours when the traffic has abated and children are no longer…

The wine that made me change my mind about Valpolicella

14 August 2021 9:00 am

There was a marvellous general of yesteryear called George Burns. He had a good war and a splendid peace. He…

The beauty of wine from the Rhine

31 July 2021 9:00 am

In an apparently benign — almost prelapsarian — setting, the Rhine is an epitome of the human condition. Scenery is…

The wine that made me change my mind about rosé

17 July 2021 9:00 am

Some time ago, I wrote that rosé should only be drunk south of Lyon, but one could start on the…

A new take on New Zealand wine

3 July 2021 9:00 am

‘The doors clap to, the pane is bright with showers.’ With ‘summer’ determined to do its worst, there is one…

How to drink in the delights of France (without leaving the country)

19 June 2021 9:00 am

It is hard to decide which is more depressing, the extension of the lockdown or the public support for this…

The wine that links Thomas Jefferson, Charles II and Samuel Pepys

5 June 2021 9:00 am

It seemed a suitable topic for a bank holiday. We were discussing Haut-Brion, a bank-breaking wine. There is a question…