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- Mitch’s Musings
It has been a while. The last few weeks hectic as Europe returned to work properly after the August break, and I am flattered to have received messages enquiring as to the next instalment of the column.
I doubt it is the skill of the writing, but rather the intention of the content which has been missed. Recommending great wines. I am pleased to say several excellent bottles have been consumed with even better company.
Prior to the recommendations, one should always take a moment to reflect on the normal hysteria at Westminster, the militant left-wing mob trying to reorder society and press reports underpinning that old fashioned values and principles are a forgotten past. My advice; do not reflect for too long and move on. Put down your phone, have a conversation. Take solace in good company and a good bottle.
The rugby world cup is in full swing. It reflects the best in sport, fans enjoying each other’s company, no violence, but on the pitch, players going at it. My readers know I love the game and the values. I have a sweep stake bet with my sons. It could be a Celtic green victory, but then the French do four things very well. Wine, belle femme, food, and rugby. It enthrals me.
Speaking of French, I recently enjoyed a fine Margaux in the East India Club, London. The cellars are worth my membership five times over, and along with a client, our head of client services Trevor Sherlock and I enjoyed a bottle of Alter Ego over lunch. The wine is stunning and worthy of a long conversation and great discussion. Our topic – raising European children in the UK. London or the shires? My vote, of course, is for a Dales boarding school.
I enjoyed the Alter Ego a week before welcoming our new team member Rowena Orr to client services. She is young, ambitious, intelligent and an excellent addition to Traditum. The wine is old and should be given more time than you think, as it is slow to reach potential. Like the author I suppose. Brilliant wine.
My family recently enjoyed an authentic cooked curry cooked by an authentic family and the unstoppable Sonia Whiteley Guest. Wine is hard to pick with curry, but Riesling is always a winner, and excellent value. Famile Hugel is worth seeking out. The wine is older than my dress sense dating back to the 12th century – one cannot remember who ran the region then. Alsace has changed hands more times than the frightful Meghan has practiced her little girl with a dream speech to wallow in self-importance.
French, German, German, French, the maps of Europe and war have created a people French and Teutonic background. They make great wine, and the region is worth a visit. Riesling is a great under-valued reliable wine, which many do not understand. It reminds me of Jamie George for England. Reliable with a smile. I was introduced to the game of spoons over a few bottles and lost. The room was filled with laughter and love, and kids of all ages sat and conversed. Traditum Character.
My final recommendation fits with Autumn and the nights drawing closer, the air getting fresher, and my sons lambs and pigs being sold here in Littondale. Seasons change and I love it. Autumn is my favourite, and the gastronomy shouts local and convivial consumption. Mushrooms, celeriac, duck, and grouse all have a place through Stonelands tables, and the cellar tries to keep up. There is no better Autumnal wine in my opinion than Burgundy and you know I am a fan.
One of the best is a Chambertin called Chapelle Chambertin, Grand Cru, Domaine Pierre Damoy. It’s a personal choice. It has received more awards than Trump has had fake tans. It is excellent wine, and with new season grouse cooked with Stonelands duck liver pate wellington is an experience. The duck and the pate being raised and made in Littondale, shot by a very happy younger son, and made by eldest daughter from her late grandmothers’ recipe.
Pierre has a fire as wine maker, which he puts down to his roots. We believe in legacy at Traditum, it is part of our Character, and this vineyard was started by Pierres great great grandfather. History sits on the shoulder of the present. It does with this wine.
Try all the wines above, and I will be writing in a few days when the eldest daughter turns 18 and a bottle laid down 18 years ago will be shared with mother and father as she enters the wide world as a legal adult. No, she does not get the cellar key. I will give you a clue. It is Italian.