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Ducks, Dog of the Week, Capion Tasting, New Ins and Car’s the Star

We’ve decided that Amanda’s article entitled Hot Weather Wines published last week has been the cause of this sudden change in the weather. And of course her going on holiday to Cornwall for a week. You know who to blame next time we see you.
A little fun tonight – we have ducks, dogs and cars. Plenty of New Ins as well, including the announcement of two smashing new wines for any true wine enthusiast – Banyuls. And don’t forget, tomorrow we have an in-store tasting of the wines from Chateau Capion with the esteemed Mr Laughton. Crack on.

Ducks Away!

With the weather being as unsettled as it has been it seems entirely appropriate to include a duck picture in tonight’s Sheldon’s Times. These three little beauties have just been rehomed and seem to be settling in nicely. Good for the garden, they will munch on the slugs, bugs and other critters.
The new owners have invited Sheldon’s Times readers to suggest names for these three ducklings. Do reply to this email if you have any ideas. If you come up with any gems and the names are selected we’ll publish it in a future newsletter. Thanks to Charlie for sharing and inviting us to participate. I have no idea regarding duck gender, so best be non-specific.
(NB: See how I did that article with no reference to eating, restaurants, butchers, wine pairings or any such cheap gag? Almost.)

Dog of the Week

Here’s Rusty! Of course a Cockapoo. And gorgeous with it, too! I am friends with another such beast, although the one I know is slightly lighter in colour.
Thank you to Carinthia for coming to see us with Rusty, all the way from St Ives. You are both welcome any time.

In-store tasting – Chateau Capion – tomorrow!

As billed last week we have Howard Laughton joining us in the shop tomorrow. Howard is the UK Director of Chateau Capion, the Languedoc-based producer of wines – white, rose and red – all of which are of high quality and represent excellent value for money.
On taste tomorrow we plan to have the following wines:

Capion Le Chemin des Garennes Blanc (£18)
Capion Le Chemin des Garennes Rouge (£18)
Zefir Rose (£18)
Chateau Capion Blanc (£38)
Chateau Capion Rouge (£38)

It may be the case that Howard sneaks along a bottle or two of some other wines from the Chateau, just for fun. Worth your while popping along to have a taste. But come early – we are starting the tasting at 10am, when it’s gone it’s gone.

New Ins

After taking a pause with the New Ins last week, we have an embarrassment of riches this week. The short article below introduces a super new pair of unusual wines, there is also a decent list of Clarets and a couple of stars from America, one north, one south.
Introducing Cave de l’Abbe Rous Banyuls

We have had a big brand Banyuls in the shop for a while, in the form of the Chapoutier Banyuls Rimage (£18.50/50cl bottle). We have been looking to expand our range of this amazing, distinctive wine. Having tasted a number we have settled on two wines from Cave de l’Abbe Rous from the south west part of France on the Mediterranean coast. This is hot, dry country, the Tramontane wind blows through one day out of every three, keeping rot and disease at bay.
Wine making in the Banyuls area stretches back to the days of Phoenicians, and the region was one of the first in France to receive appellation controlee status in 1936. Wines make under the AOC are exclusively Vin Doux Naturel, the fortification process was introduced in the 13th century. It is achieved using locally produced grape spirit. The dominant grape variety is Grenache Noir which must make up 50% of any blend under AOC rules. Eight other varieties are permitted. Yields in the vineyard are low (as low as 16hl/ha) and all work in the vineyard is performed by hand.

Cave de l’Abbe Rous is the commercial arm of the Banyuls co-operative. The combined output of the Cave represents over 70% of the total production of Banyuls output and 90% of the Grand Cru Banyuls wines. The two wines we have selected represent the two core types of wines:

Abbe Rous Banyuls Rimage 2019 (£22) – Rimage is a style of Banyuls akin to Vintage Port. Grapes are harvested, destemmed and macerated for 20 days. Fortification is immediate. Like a vintage Port, the wine is designed to be aged in bottle, although based on our tasting it is difficult to resist young.

Abbe Rous Banyuls 2008 Grand Cru ‘Baillaury’ (£26) – this Grand Cru wine (better vineyards) is vinified & fortified in the same way as the Rimage, but is then matured in oak foudres (casks) for 8 years before bottling. The closest equivalent is probably a tawny Port, but of course the flavours are different because Port is made from different grape varieties. This is a seriously interesting wine.

I think these wines represent an amazing level of quality for a very reasonable price. Definitely worth a go if you fancy trying something a little different. Well done Charlie for being the first customer on the day of the arrival of these fascinating wines!

Other New Ins this week:

NV Cremant d’Alsace (£18.95, restock)
2013 Nyetimber Blanc de Blancs (£49) – I reckon the best value Nyetimber in the range, simply delicious.

2019 Chateau de Tracy (£27.50, Pouilly Fume, restock)

1996 Clos du Marquis (£85, such a good wine, probably the last time we will see it)
2009 and 2010 Senejac (2009 £38, 2010 £32)
2010 d’Armailhac (£75)
2010 La Reserve de la Comtesse (£65)
2016 Capbern (£32, note they have dropped the Gasqueton part of the name)
2016 Beaumont (£20, the Claret, not the South African)
2016 Cantemerle (£35)

From Mendoza, Argentina we have 2018 Pulenta Gran Corte VII (£37.50) – a big wine!
And finally from Napa, California Chateau Montelena Estate Cabernet 2015 (£135) – billiant.

Car’s the Star

Well the colour of this week’s car just about matches the colour of our knackered old sign on the front of the shop. We do have plans to change it (the sign that is, not the car). A Mark 2 with a 3.4 litre engine and all of the lovely shiny chrome. Built in our very own Coventry between 1959 and 1967. Magic.
Many thanks to Paul for bringing the car to see us. To use the words of Sir William Lyons, all Grace….Space…Pace…. Watch this space, we may have another green Jag next week, of a fractionally older vintage.
That’s it for Sheldon’s Times this evening. I hope you all have something nice planned for the weekend. The weather on Sunday afternoon looks the best, but I think the variability will continue. Whatever you are up to, make sure you enjoy a decent bottle or two. Amanda and I will be here to assist you tomorrow.

Shane, Amanda, Esther, Nigel, Trish and Carol

Your duck-loving, cockapoo-adoring, Capion-drinking wine team at Sheldon’s Wine Cellars

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