We Are Off Again

31 May 2017 6:44 pm | Posted by siteadmin

Graham D is back after a number of years researching the vineyards of Northern Greenland “one of my favourite wines has to be icewine”

His new schedule of Blogs will commence in early June 2017 and will feature articles on individual and often unique wines, spirits and liqueurs – of course by popular demand a whole new series of Food and Wine Pairing.

There will be a lots of info on Gins this time , since it’s UK’s most popular spirit.

Bewarned some other unpredictable events may also occur ???

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3 April 2010 4:20 pm | Posted by siteadmin

FOOD and WINE PAIRING—SHELLFISH (continuation from blog 

 “ Food and Wine pairing”  dated 4th February 2010 )


INTRODUCTION:—–this blog and the many more following will examine the pleasurable and often complex relationship between good food and wine, with the ultimate aim to assist our many discerning customers evolve the convivial bonding of good food and wine.



CHALLENGES:—–Delicate shellfish need due care and attention, beware and stay away from strongly oaked wines. You should seek out crisp dry white wines, new world sauvignon blancs, dry champagne or a quality sparkling wine will do the job very well. Shellfish cooked with, cheese, cream or herbs do support a much broader range of wines.

RECOMMENDATIONS:—–When eating live shellfish try a very dry and crisp Muscadet  or a more up market Pouilly-Fume, both from the Loire Valley.

When enjoying rich dishes like Devilled Crab, Lobster Newburgh or Lobster Thermidor, then you could choose from all three colours and good recommendations would be a light red from the Loire—Saumur Champigny, a fine and sturdy rose from Australia—Willowglen Rose  or a buttery Chardonnay from New Zealand— Hunter’s of Marlborough.

Lightly cooked Scallops, Clams or Mussels in a white wine sauce go exceedingly well with New World Sauvignon Blancs or a Mortitx Blanc from the island of Mallorca.

Prawns, Shrimp and Langostine dishes cooked in richer style sauces (not curry spices) are very well suited to more full bodied whites like Chateaunuef du Pape  from the Rhone Valley and a rich Chilean Chardonnay from Millaman.


MAIN DIRECTORY:—–click on The Marriage of Food and Wine  to access our quick search facility to locate hundreds of other food/wine/food pairing options, including hors-d’oeuvres, starters, soups, main courses and desserts. Also  Great Friends-Cheese and Wine  for cheese and wine pairing.


NEXT ARTICLE:—–Smoked food including,  smoked trout, smoked salmon, smoked mackerel, smoked eel, smoked halibut, smoked ham, smoked chicken , smoked duck and smoked goose.

Graham D

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4 February 2010 10:40 am | Posted by siteadmin

FOOD and WINE PAIRING—WILD GAME (continuation from blog  “ Food and Wine pairing”  dated 9th January  2010)

 INTRODUCTION:—–this blog and the many more following will examine the pleasurable and often complex relationship between good food and wine, with the ultimate aim to assist our many discerning customers evolve the convivial bonding of good food and wine.


CHALLENGES:—–Wild game varies in taste quite a bit, one has the light and flavoursome meats of partridge and pheasant, middle of the range in taste would be rabbit, pigeon and mallard and the strongest tasting meats would be venison, wild boar and especially hare. The challenge is selecting wines to match all three different groups

  RECOMMENDATIONS:—–Big or robust red wines of quality will go well with all three categories of feathered or furred game mentioned above and classic matches would be a full bodied Crozes Hermitage from the Northern Rhone or a well matured Barossa Shiraz from Australia.

If we focus on the lighter meats like pheasant and partridge then there a number of  white or rose wines that would hold their own if the meat is roasted or served with light sauces. Try a full flavoured Chablis Premier Cru such as  from the estate of Tremblay or a Gisborne Viognier from New Zealand. For a rose go for the highly recommended Whispering Angel. A light bodied red wine suited to this particular category would be a juicy red Chinon from the Loire Valley.

Rabbit, pigeon and mallard  all love medium to full bodied red  ranging from Pinot Noirs like those from Oregan and Volnay and Pommard  from Burgundy, to a fruity Hawkes Bay Merlot from the Southern Hemisphere’s New Zealand. These same four red wines are well suited to Rabbit Stew or Pie and also Cold Game Pie.

Venison, Wild Boar and Hare do prefer complex and more full bodied red wines of character and style. Two big boys that immediately come to mind are of course Chateaunuef-du-Pape from the lower Rhone region of France and a quality red from Ribera del Duero from the north east of Spain. If you are brave and considering the famed game dish of Jugged Hare, then the intense and fruity wines from Gigondas and Vacqueyras will the perfect match.

MAIN DIRECTORY:—–click on The Marriage of Food and Wine  to access our quick search facility to locate hundreds of other food/wine/food pairing options, including hors-d’oeuvres, starters, soups, main courses and desserts. Also Great Friends-Cheese and Wine  for cheese and wine pairing.

 NEXT ARTICLE:—–Shellfish dishes, including prawns, langostine, clams, mussels, scallops, crab and lobster

Graham D

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Food and Wine Pairing—Medium Style Curry

13 August 2009 4:25 pm | Posted by siteadmin

(continuation from blog  “ Food and Wine pairing”  dated 17th  June  2009)

INTRODUCTION:—–this blog and the many more following will examine the pleasurable and often complex relationship between good food and wine, with the ultimate aim to assist our many discerning customers evolve the convivial bonding of good food and wine.

FOOD BEING FEATURED:—–MEDIUM STYLE CURRIES, including  CHICKEN, LAMB, PRAWN and VEGETABLE.  ( Thai or Chinese curries with similar ingredients would also be a good alternative )

CHALLENGES:—–We all know that matching wines with Asian cooking can be a difficult challenge and matching wines with curries even more difficult. With mild and fragrant curries like Korma, Biryani or Kashmiri dishes and curries with fruit like pineapple or mango, these can be a little easier to match than with hot curries like Madras and Vindaloo or astringent sauces made from tamarind or too strong in fenugreek and ginger.

RECOMMENDATIONS:—–wines with strong and distinct flavours or wines with fruity acidity will provide the best matches for the above mentioned dishes. A good tip to help you enjoy wine during an asian meal, is to take a sip of water to refresh the palate each time before you take a sip of wine.

Red wines from the Loire made from the Cabernet Franc grape such as Saumur-Champigny have the ideal fruit and acidity balance for mild curries. With this combination you will enjoy both the meal and the wine.

A white wine renoun for matching Asian cooking is the wine named after its grape variety Gewurztraminer. Gewurztraminer’s from the New World such as Segu from Chile have a little more acidity and body over the Alsace versions of this grape and can even put up a good with some of the hotter curries.

Other white wines to be considered are those produced in the Languedoc region of France. Wines like a well chilled Picpoul de Pinet  are perfectly happy with spicy dishes, again it’s the fruit and high acidity that comes through and softens the impact of curries and strongly flavoured dishes.

MAIN DIRECTORY:—–click on The Marriage of Food and Wine to access our quick search facility to locate hundreds of other food/wine/food pairing options, including hors-d’oeuvres, starters, soups, main courses and desserts. Also Great Friends-Cheese and Wine for cheese and wine pairing.


NEXT ARTICLE:—–Pork dishes, including roast pork, grilled pork chops,  suckling pig, pork fillet and medallions of pork.


Graham D

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Follow up from previous cheese and wine blog, dated 11 May 2009

16 June 2009 12:54 pm | Posted by siteadmin

Following my previous article  please find some more  interesting  information to help our many customers and followers enjoy the matching of  quality cheese and wine. The main purpose of this article is to highlight generic groups of wines and to match them to their most suited cheese types.

It should be noted that the balance of flavours is paramount and the following table is only intended as helpful suggestions, but please do experiment and I am sure you, your family and friends will not only succeed in matching good cheese and wines to suit yourselves, but you will certainly enjoy the process of seeking natural partners.

RED RHONE———HARD and BLUE types such as traditional Single and Double Gloucester or Dorset Blue Viney.

RED PIEDMONT———SEMI  HARD types like Farmhouse Mature Cheddar or Cheshire

RED TUSCANY———HARD and SEMI HARD types such as Parmagiano Reggiano or Lanchashire

RED BORDEAUX———SOFT and BLUE types such as Bresse Blue or Munster

RED BEAUJOLAIS———SOFT CREAMY types such as Reblochon or Wensleydale

RED BURGUNDY———HARD or BLUE types such as Jarlsberg or Blue Stilton

RED NEW WORLD———HARD and SEMI HARD types such as Cheddar, Gruyere and Jarlsberg

RED RIOJA & RIBERA———HARD types such as Manchego or Orkney Smoked Cheddar

WHITE BORDEAUX (DRY)———GOAT and SOFT types such as Ireland’s Mine-Gabhar Goat’s Cheese and Valencay

WHITE BURGUNDY———HARD types such as Cheddar and Red Liecester

NEW WORLD SAUVIGNON BLANC———GOAT and HARD types such as Cheshire and Lairobell

NEW WORLD CHARDONNAY———HARD and SOFT types such as Reblochon or Mozzarella di Buffalo Campara

DRY ALSACE AND RIESLING——— SOFT and HARD types such as Emmenthal or Rind Wrapped Farmhouse Cheddar

ROSE———SOFT and INTENSE types such as Blue Cheshire and Gournay Affine

CHAMPAGNE & SPARKLING——— SOFT and FIRM types such as Brie, Camembert and Saint Paulin

DESSERT & LATE HARVEST WINES———SOFT, BLUE and INTENSE types such as Roquefort or Pont L’Eveque

RICH & SWEET SHERRY ———BLUE or INTENSE types such as St Agur, Gorganzola and Wensleydale Blue

DRY SHERRY———HARD and INTENSE types such as Goats Cheese, Cheddar matured for at least six months and Manchego

PORT——— BLUE or INTENSE types as St Agur, Stilton and Cashel Blue

MADEIRA———HARD and SEMI HARD types such as Gruyere and Derby

MARSALA———BLUE and INTENSE types such as Oak Smoked Cheddar and Roquefort


Go to http://ahadleigh-wine.com/cheese/ and review the many other cheeses with their matching wines.



 Watch out soon for our 3rd article on cheese and wine pairing.




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The Pairing of Food and Wine…an introduction to the subject

15 May 2009 6:59 am | Posted by siteadmin

There is no doubt that good food and wine are one of the great ways of bringing pleasure to close ones and friends alike and with all the remarkable varieties of  flavour and tastes, matching food with wine will always be an engaging and delightful challenge and pastime. Although it should be noted, that in the main, taste is subjective and only by experimenting with different wines and the pairings of food and wine will lead to those wonderfully more interesting and blissful moments in life, which is what good food and wine should be all about.

Travel, food and wine are also another rewarding combination. What’s more agreeable than say leisurely traveling the West Coast of Ireland especially around the coastline of County Galway and the wilds of Connemara and when around midday comes it’s a must to find time to stop off for lunch at Moran’s Oyster Cottage (www.moransoystercottage.com) along side the river just south of Galway City near Clarinbridge. Then to indulge in the most enjoyable pleasure of tasting cold fresh native oysters in the shell with a few drops of lemon juice, some local warm brown bread and of course a large glass of chilled Chablis Premier Cru, Montmain, a timeless and irresistible partnership it must be said. I am sure you will agree that the combination of good food, wine and travel has to be the ultimate experience for the gastronomic adventurer.

Those who enjoy good wine often spend time in selecting and tasting wines that to them fully match their taste requirements. Those who enjoy good food follow a similar path to reach their expectations. Now when it comes to pairing both these requirements together, for many this is where the problems start, and this is where we can be of help.

Is your time well spent pairing food and wine, are the end results rewarding, is the process mythology or fact, or perhaps a combination of both? These are all very interesting questions, especially since we know some foods will just about go well with any wines, red, white or rose, Grilled Chicken would be  would be most agreeable with all three styles. On the other hand you can easily destroy a combination of good food and wine, for example an obvious clash would be eating a light Strawberry Mousse with a heavy red Chateauneuf-du-Pape, both the food and wine would sadly lose out. In most cases exceedingly good results are attainable with not too much effort, as with Oysters and Chablis, or for instance try a chilled sweet wine from Bordeaux or a Monbazillac with Blue Stilton or Roquefort and a big chunk of crusty bread, yes you will definitely find them a perfect marriage.

How do we develop the perfect combinations and partnerships between good food and wine? Research is one way, trial and error is another, or why not click on https://www.ahadleigh-wine.com/wine-and-food/  and review what is one of the quickest and most helpful food and wine matching directories available, guiding one through numerous dishes with alternative selections of wines to match most tastes. Distinctive cuisine deserves the accompaniment of good wine and hopefully this article and our following publications will be of help.

This intoduction to pairing food and wine will be followed over the coming months by many other interesting articles discussing the matching of specific food groups or individual dishes with many different wine options. Watch out for our next article which will focus on matching fish rich in oil like trout, salmon and mackerel with everyday drinking wines




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Great Friends Cheese and Wine…an introduction to the pairing of cheese and wine

11 May 2009 9:08 am | Posted by siteadmin

The French and Italians may eat much more cheese than we the British do, but as individuals we eat and enjoy a far greater variety. The average French or Italian person tend to stay loyal to the many superb farmhouse cheeses of their locallity or region and may only eat on a regular basis three or four different cheese types throughout their lifetime.

Like our wine habits the British have no such loyalties or inhibitions – one week we could be eating soft or goats cheese from a variety of different European countries, another week we will be sampling blue or hard cheeses from as far away as Canada, Australia or New Zealand.

But, are we the Britsh eating the best?  For there is cheese and there is artisanal and handcrafted cheeses. Is the answer in the word choice?

Artisanal and handcrafted cheeses offer inspiring flavours, textures and noble subtleties that many supermarket cheeses don’t begin to approach. Despite the huge dominance of factory produced cheses, there are now (thank God) many more specialist independants than there were say ten or fifteen years ago promoting high quality individual cheeses from UK, Ireland and Continental farmhouses, often supplying splendid and unique wines to match. I would say today unlike any time in the past the combined choice of fine cheeses and wine is now simply enormous.

The more we support the INDEPENDANTS, the greater the variety and availability of these natural and very flavoursome cheeses will become, as well as sound advice and of course personal service. The more choice we have the better for everyone.

Cheese is a fascinating subject and shares a long list of similarities with wine. Cheese like wine, is fermented to create a product very different and infinitely more intricate than the original basic material it’s produced from. Like wine, cheeses age until they reach their level of maturity and perfection, then of course they can travel downhill.

Similar to red wine and port, to maximize flavours cheese must be brought to room temperature before it is served. Cheeses come in many different styles, each with their own unique set of characteristics and some specialist cheeses can take years to mature. Again good wines have their own unique styles, characteristics and also take many years to mature.

France, Italy, Spain and Switzerland have controls and appellations of origin for cheese, just as they do for wine. Farmstead cheese made from the milk of the cheese makers own animals is comparable to chateau or estate bottled wine made from the winegrower’s own grapes.

Despite the above similarities highlighted and despite the widespread belief that cheese and wine are great friends and natural partners, matching them is not at all simple. The perception that cheese has to go with red wine or port is not correct. In fact, the the wine that often works best is white, not red, and often sweet, not a dry white wine.  But, selecting the right cheese for a good red wine can lead you to heaven, or to some other wonderful place.

Matching wine with cheese can also be very personal as people do have different taste requirements and perceptions. For example one may like dry soft goats cheese, but dislike a salty blue cheese. A very sound rule to note, is that a good cheese will make an average wine seem even greater, while an average cheese will most definitely spoil a great wine

Go to  www.ahadleigh-wine.com/cheese/ and visit our section specialising in matching  over one hundred cheese types with wine. You can search by imputing your own cheese preference, or select via a milk type option, or scroll down our huge selection from around the World.  I am sure you will find this application most helpful.

Further enjoy the process of seeking natural partners by reading soon my next article which helps take the complexity out of the selection process. The article will give examples of matching five generic groups of cheeses with generic groups of wine partners



Happy Cheese Days

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