In The Drink with Paul Antrobus

The new Muscadet?

This month try a Picpoul de Penet, a zingy alternative to Muscadet. Picpoul de Penet dry white wine from France’s Languedoc-Roussillon region is beginning to get noticed and, as it rises into favour, we are seeing a modest increase in brands available on our supermarket shelves. Some commentators call it the ‘new Muscadet’. Picpoul translates literally, I am told, as ...

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Whisky experience

The latest innovation in the history of Scotch whisky is a blend of several single malts marketed under invented brand names and labelled Blended Malts. They are getting traction with consumers, and shelf space in the supermarkets. You cannot get more crafty than Scotch malts. There are 126 licensed distilleries, each one a ‘craft’ batch operation and 20 million barrels ...

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Drinking with Mr Hobbs

As the popularity of gin shows no signs of slowing here are a couple more to try this spring. The new canal and narrowboats feature centred around a typical canalside pub, the Lock Keeper’s Inn, was a hit at this year’s London Boat Show, with reportedly more than 3,000 visiting the site on the Saturday alone. The Inn featured, appropriately, ...

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Vegan beers for all

Did you do Veganuary last month and want to continue a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle? Luckily, there is a good range of suitable bottled craft beers available for new converts as well as the already committed. They are in the minority on our supermarket shelves, but on a worldwide basis of different beer types the list runs into hundreds. WHEN ...

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Winter warming wassail

A warming wassail will bring some mid-January cheer. “Love and joy come to you and to you your wassail too,” goes a traditional Yuletide song. It is not a carol but rather the basis for a mediaeval (1600s at least) January ritual for farmhands to go a-wassailing – meaning to go round the houses to ask for, demand even, food ...

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Celebrate the festive season in style

Time to plan your Christmas tipples, but do not forget those who are driving. Boutique craft gins As the craft gins phenomenon continues apace, a bottle is a ‘must have’ this year. Typically £27 – £40 per 70cl bottle and a decent 43 per cent abv, all are rated highly for their individual flavours. Bewildered which to choose? Choose your ...

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Young at Heart

It is time for one wine to get its yearly debut, while a fizz is still seeing a huge increase in UK sales. Every year on the third Thursday of November, the young red vin de primeur Beaujolais nouveau is released on to the market in a frenzy of promotion, buying and drinking. Just six to eight weeks old, the ...

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Celebrating Trafalgar

This year celebrate Trafalgar Day with a Nelson’s Eye. October is the month for Trafalgar Day events – 21 October was the actual day of the 1805 victory. At the annual Great British Beer Festival at Olympia, London, back in August, I kept an eye out for something appropriate for Trafalgar events and found Nelson’s Eye from the Heavy Industry ...

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Unique bottle for boaters

Which came first – the bottle or the wine? In the case of J.P. Chenet the answer is the bottle. And, if you are looking for a rosé to take on a September afternoon boat party, my small tasting panel recently gave the thumbs up for J.P. Chenet Grenache-Cinsault rosé in a curvy, slightly asymmetric 750ml bottle. This pale pink, ...

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Gins galore

Salcombe Yacht Club’s annual Regatta Week has a new title, Salcombe Gin SYC, and a new sponsor, Salcombe Start Point Gin. The regatta, now in its 121st year, runs from 13 – 18 August and follows Salcombe Town Regatta, 6 – 11 August, so a good couple of weeks’ fun. The gin, launched just over a year ago, has rapidly ...

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