Fortunately my flight from Geneva was on time and I could use my Oyster card for the speedy train journey to the dramatic new Blackfriars station spanning the River Thames, arriving in good time for an evening of good cheer and Albion wine. Continue reading
I’d arrived at St Pancras to find the Perfect Cellar in The Clock Tower. I could see the proud clock tower on this handsome Victorian building which has always delighted me whenever I was on the Euston Road, London.
I had been told that the entry was somewhat discreet so I walked into the station to search for the front door but was quickly distracted by the poet and writer, Sir John Betjeman, who was instrumental in saving St Pancras from demolition.
Back outside I did find the correct entrance and was ushered up to the fifth floor and along a long, vaulted corridor to the east end of the building to the lofty room beneath the clock tower. Originally the winding room, when the building was refurbished at the turn of the century the clock was electrified releasing the grand, tall space which is now used as a party venue as well as a rather special suite to stay, known, unsurprisingly, as The Clock Tower.
The walls may have been stark but the welcome was warm from the Perfect Cellar team as well as colleagues from ThinkersPR. Principally an on-line wine merchant, The Perfect Cellar does have a shop in Clerkenwell, London.
There were just four wines on show, but what a show! Each of the wines was presented with an elegant display of fruit and spices indicative of the the aromas and flavours of each wine.
Mas Amiel Vintage Maury Rouge 2012
Deep ruby, with a bouquet of raspberries and cinnamon, lusciously sweet yet has sufficient acidity to not allow it to be cloying; as well as the red berry notes there are hints of ginger and candied peel.
A wine reminiscent of a good Port, it is a real treat from Maury, Roussillon in the far south of France.
As we were tasting and talking we were offered small, plates of food, which complemented the wines well. They were prepared by a chef from La Belle Assiette, a specialist company who organise a service preparing meals in your home.
From the small selection of wines on show and chatting to everyone involved with this wine merchant I can see how keen they are to encourage wine drinkers to discover good wines from small producers and different regions of France and, now, other countries.
Indeed, when you search the wines on the Perfect Cellar website, hover over the bottle picture to discover another image of the fruits and spices that describe the wines. A novel idea – a sort of visual scratch and sniff…
Our first day was an eye opener for me and I was enjoying learning about this small New Zealand wine region.
What a bright start to our second day in Nelson. When the Impressionist artist Claude Monet and his family settled in Giverny in 1883 the piece of land sloping gently down from the house to the road was planted with an orchard and enclosed by high stone walls.
When Darryl and Tranja Fry settled on their property, Fossil Ridge, in Nelson in 1997 the piece of land was nothing but scrub, but they had a similar vision of creating not only a vineyard but a garden which would embody the tranquillity and beauty of Monet’s garden in Giverny.