|Meeting Day||1st Friday|
|Time||1.45 - 3.45|
|Location||Castle Street Centre|
|Co-ordinator(s)||Allan Sharples & Digby Gunson|
Our group continues to do well as we approach our sixth year ! We rounded off the last season with a programme exploring sparkling wines, from Prosecco through to Champagne. A word of warning to all U3A members - do not try Asda's latest cheap "sparkler" Priogrigio ! . Supposedly the new drink. its bubbles disappeared in under a minute, leaving you with a very cheap, flat white wine.
September will see us sampling Fair Trade wines, presented by the Fair Trade Group,and later we will have sessions on Lebanese wines,plus more antipodean delights, both presented by members, before getting into the Christmas spirit with a Jacob's Join and the usual College lunch.
Our numbers are now 34, thanks to two new members who joined us in May. We are now at the limit for our "two bottles of each wine" format. We are willing to expand if the demand is there, and anyone interested should contact one of the co-ordinators, or speak to us at the Open Day.
Since the last report we have enjoyed three varied and interesting sessions.
In January we held a "Would I lie to you?" afternoon, when four "experts" from the group did their best to persuade the rest of the group just what they were drinking - is this a Malbec? or a Sangiovese, or, then again is it just another Pinot Noir? Suffice it to say that not many were fooled by the hyperbolic descriptions and had a good measure of success in correctly identifying just what the wines were!
In February Guy Pugh from the Garstang Wine Society gave his customary presentation with the usual flair as he talked us through some wines grown at high altitude, principally from South America, ranging from Malbec to Albarino. Sixteen members also attended the annual Wine Dinner at Kendal College when Lakeland Vintners offered some excellent Spanish wines including Cava, White Rioja plus two fine reds, finishing with a lovely Moscatel dessert wine. Our thanks go to Lakeland Vintners for their splendid presentations and the the staff and students of the College for their high quality food.
In March Andrew from Majestic gave a first-class presentation on some more Australian wines including Chardonnay, Viognier and a blend of Shiraz/Mourvedre. He was assisted by the well-known Australian entrepreneur, James Busby, whose area of expertise is the little known area of Wigig in the rapidly shrinking Shelvington region.
In April we aim to combine a blind tasting with a quiz, followed in May by a programme on Sparkling Wines.
We can still accommodate one or two visitors at our meetings; please contact one of the co-ordinators.
In September we completed our semi-blind tasting started in May, sampiing and identifying (?) several red and white wines, using grapes from their original country and and from other sources.
Members are becoming more adept at identifying more assuredly the wines placed before them.
In October We enjoyed an excellent member-led presentation of Californian wines, including a Cabernet Sauvignon and a spicy Zinfandel, with some very well detailed and informative graphics.
We followed in November with another member-led presentation of wines from Margaret River and Hunter Valley in Australia. Six members combined their knowledge and research skills to offer a very good session with the use of video and top class graphics. More Australia to come in the New Year.
In December we have our annual Jacob's Join, with members' Wines for Christmas recommendations, plus a lunch at Kendal College.
In the New Year we hope to cover more Australian wines, as well as Eastern European wines.
We can always accommodate one or two new members, and anyone interested in joining our very friendly group should contact one of the co-ordinators.
Since the New Year we have had two very successful meetings. The first was from Majestic Wines when we sampled a number of wines indigenous to their respective countries; with the second we enjoyed once again the ruminations of Guy Pugh who talked most enjoyably about a number of wines that had taken his fancy over the last year. In February we also thoroughly enjoyed the Wine Dinner at Kendal College, when the wines were presented by Lakeland Vintners of Ings. We sampled Portuguese wines ranging from an excellent white port aperitif, a Vinho Verde, an "indie" white, an excellent Douro and a lovely port to complete the evening. Our thanks again go to Tony, who presented the wines, and the Chef, the Sommelier and the students of the College for their splendid work.
March will see us enjoying more (and different!) wines from Portugal at Castle Street.
We are currently full, but, whilst we have no waiting list, we are happy to receive requests from non-members who may wish to come and sample our activities. Please contact the co-ordinators about these opportunities.