Went to an office party in a fridge the other night. The top floor of Krystle – my nomination for the world’s daftest named nightclub – is badged as ‘The Penthouse’ leading to thoughts of sybaritic luxury, comfy button-backs and naked models reclining on tigerskin rugs. Alas it’s nothing like. Maybe the name’s not so daft after all as the sides are open to the atmosphere and the crystals were quickly forming – on nose, face, hands on on the outside of an already turbo-chilled pint of Guinness. As soon as I got the glass unstuck from my paws I switched to an old favourite, Black Bush, neat. Some compensation for the chill blast and the fact that those oh-so-ecological gas patio heaters had only been switched on minutes before our arrival. My gut feeling is that Black Bush has been tricked up over the years to make it sweeter – it’s still very palatable stuff though.
Couldn’t believe the prices that The Marine Hotel in Sutton charge for their wines at a function. €28 for Santa Rita 120 Sauv B. That’s 3 x retail and latterly I’ve seen it on special for €6.95.
Tesco have a rather fine albarino at the minute – Pazo Serantellos 2008 (€9.45) . Lovely stone fruit on the nose, following through to mid palate, leavened with citrus and crisp apple, with a spiky, energising lime lift at the back end. I’m also scouring branches of Superquinn for the remants of Paul Boutinot’s rather fine ‘Chat en Oeuf’ (groan!), a grenache/syrah blend that kicks ass for the modest price of €9.
Came across a great idea for a last minute Chrissie prezzie – Mc Hugh’s Off-Licenses have slashed the prices of two of the world’s most lauded dessert wines. Between now and Christmas and, of course, while stocks last, South Africa’s Klein Contantia 2004 Vin de Constance 500ml bottles and Canada’s Inniskillin 2006 Riesling Ice Wine 375ml bottles will be at a special price of €25 per bottle. These normally retail for €70 and €60 respectively. Both come in attractive gift boxes. They are an ideal gift for wine enthusiasts, especially oneself! I’m not a big fan of the Klein Constantia – though I know many who love its upfront unctuous richness – the Inniskillin is in a different league, spicy and subtle and I’m going to grab some of this if you guys don’t get there before me.
25e Malahide Road, Artane, Dublin 5. Tel: 8311867.
57 Kilbarrack Road, Dublin 5. Tel: 8394692.