Monday, August 17, 2009

Trollied Tuesday: Côtes du Clyde

And I'm back. I haven't been on holiday or anything, just a combination of having a lot to do and being bone idle has kept me quiet for a while.

But this is a story that is too good not to share. The world's best wines will one day be made in Scotland.

It's an intriguing prospect. Not just for the thought that the one day a drink that combines wine and whisky might be more than just something you give to friends in Essex as house-warming gifts. Would becoming the centre of the wine-producing world change Scotland profoundly? Rather than seeing its wine industry as yet another opportunity to get pished on the cheap, would it become more like a Mediterranean country?

After all, with the significantly higher temperatures needed for this prediction to come true, there would be ample chances for a passeggiata in the balmy streets of Dundee, to sip a chilled, locally grown rosé in the streets of Coatbridge late at night. It may even induce people in the west of Scotland to stop necking Buckfast in favour of the odd glass of Côtes du Spey, or Château Urquhart. What do you reckon the chances are? Not great, I'd have to say. Unless they come up with a wine that goes well with a deep-fried Mars bar and Scotch pie. Now there's a challenge for even the most talented wine maker.

Not that British wine is itself a joke; so there's no reason why the Scots should not get in on the act. Even the French are starting to concede that some sparkling English wines - such as Nyetimber and Chapel Down – have something going for them. Recently I was introduced to the delights of Cornish wine, Camel Valley Brut, and I shall soon be sampling another English one.

Someone on Mersea Island off the Essex coast has had the splendid idea of having a combined brewery and vineyard. On a recent visit there I took the opportunity to pick up a keg of their oyster ale - fine stuff, though I suspect it will be even better when drunk in autumnal conditions. I also picked up a bottle of their white wine; I shall let you know if it's any good. I suspect, however, that Colchester and environs will remain immune to continental influences for a while longer.

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Blogger Quink said...

I sampled a Scottish wine in a tasting I organised in Fife in about 1996. It was shite. Scotland's a land of cheap lager, not chateauneuf.

8:15 pm  

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