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DotW, Guest Ale, Wine Qualifications, New Ins and Car’s the Star

The usual Sheldon’s Times articles in this week’s edition. Those eagle-eyed among you may have spotted the rings in the logo above. That’s because we have a sort-of-Wedding-edition. Today (assuming all went to plan) Alice and James got married, and tomorrow sees the wedding of Tim and Debs. Here’s wishing both couples the very best for their married lives ahead of them.
We have a couple of super miniatures in tonight’s DotW, a delicious new guest beer, a reminder about the brilliant eduction programme Amanda runs and some lovely New Ins. To finish we have a rather wild Car’s the Star.

Dog of the Week

Here’s Dougie (left) and Jackson (right) with a rather nice jeroboam of Sheldon’s Champagne. The bottle is just a touch bigger than the pups. These two are regular visitors to the shop, quite capable of eating their own bodyweight in doggie snacks each time they come.
As always, thanks to Debs and Tim for coming to see us on a frequent basis. I am suffering from withdrawal symptoms at present because the little ones are on ‘holiday’. Shame they can’t make the ceremony itself, I would have liked to see them both dressed up in their dickie-bows. Come home soon.

This week’s Guest Beer – White Horse Brewery Classic IPA

This week’s guest beer is an IPA from the White Horse Brewery. The brewery is based in Stanford in the Vale, near Faringdon. Established in 2004 by Andy Wilson, the brewery is now run by Anneli Baxter. It is a small team, making small batches of great beer. We have selected their classic IPA as our new guest beer. The White Horse team describe the beer as a golden IPA brewed with Cascade, Summit and Chinook hops. Fruity and easy-drinking with classic grapefruit and citrus notes.
Purely in the spirit of research Amanda and I had a glass the other day. We would echo the description from the brewery. This is tasty drinking. Lighter than the Clavell & Hyde IPA from the other week making it perhaps a touch too easy to sip. £2.95 a bottle.

Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) – become qualified in wine

In addition to the cellar tours that we run (see last week’s email for details), Amanda has also restarted the formal education programme. The Wine and Spirit Education Trust is the globally-recognised industry body for wine education, with 5 levels of qualification. Amanda is our qualified educator and runs Levels 1 to 3 here at the shop and at other local locations. Level 1 is a single day course aimed at equipping you with the core basics including the industry-accepted methodology for tasting wine. Level 2 builds on Level 1 and examines grape varieties and regions in more detail. Level 3 goes a step further, with the exam being the first to include a blind tasting.
Amanda is running her next Level 1 course on Saturday 11th September here at the shop. The price is £155 to include the tutor pack, all wines, a light lunch and the examination costs. The course runs from 0930-1700hrs. Don’t be scared – the exam is a 30 question multiple choice paper, so far she has an untarnished record of getting Sheldon’s customers through.
To book on just call the shop or email

New Ins

Well you were certainly quick off the mark last week. The Remoriquet NSG 1er Cru Damodes 2005 sold 11 minutes after the email went out, the Duhart Milon 2000 and half of the Cos du Marquis 1996 not long after that. I will keep my eye out for more.
Let’s see how you fair with the below.

First up we have a new English fizz. Following a fairly comprehensive tasting we have decided to stock two wines from Digby Fine English based in Arundel. Digby is interesting because the wine-making philosophy is entirely based on quality. Digby have no vineyards of their own, instead choosing to work with growers at the best sites across the South East who meet their stringent quality standards and match their sustainability ethos. We have selected their two non-vintage wines from the range, both of which are award winners.

Digby NV Brut (£32) – a Pinot Noir dominant blend, this wine impressed us with it’s intensity and richness.
Digby NV Leander Pink (£32) – initially made exclusively for the Leander Club in Henley and drunk in extraordinary volumes in Regatta week, this is the perfect pink summer fizz. Again a Pinot Noir-dominant blend, think strawberries and cream.
I will be opening a bottle of each tomorrow for readers of Sheldon’s Times to taste – just pop in, tap me up and I’ll pour you a sample. It is the summer, after all (although you wouldn’t know it with the weather we are having). WIGIG.
Next up we have a wine from a less well known appellation in Spain. The Montsant wine growing area is located in northeast Spain in Tarragona, just southwest of Barcelona. The Monsanto DO almost surrounds the more famous Priorat DOQ and cultivates similar grape varieties. The dominant variety is old vine Grenache, known locally as Garnatxa Negra. The wines are rich, ripe with juicy fruits. Alcohol levels are sensible due to the altitude of the vineyards (200-700m).
We have selected a wine called Negre de Montsant by Terroir Sense Fronteres (£25). Luis Gutierrez of the Wine Advocate gives the wine 92 points and describes it as follows:
“The 2018 Negre is a blend of organic Garnacha and 25% Cariñena from different vineyards around the village of Capçanes where they have the winery. (…) There are cherries, spices and herbs and a touch of licorice, and the palate is medium-bodied, with very fine tannins. Delicious.”
We think it is great, try it for yourselves.
Perhaps needing less of an explanation, we also have the following New Ins:

2017 Domaine Leflaive Macon Verze (£38)
2017 Domaine Leflaive Puligny Montrachet (£115)
2018 Domaine Ramonet Chassagne Montrachet (£125)

2005 Chateau Batailley DOUBLE MAGS (£359) – things of great beauty.

Arran 10 year old single malt whisky (£39.50) – for Alastair

and finally….

2018 Joseph Drouhin Montrachet Marquis de Laguiche

Car’s the Star

Wowsers! Look at this beastie! Underneath the rather full-on exterior is a new Nissan Juke I think? But who would know? I think it has been attacked by Wolverine. Even the wheels have had the treatment.
What is also great is the fact that Wendy, the owner of the beast, has a special, matching dress to go with the car. Rock on! And as Tim’s Mum, here’s wishing you a great day tomorrow. Isn’t it the case that the Groom’s mother is the lucky one with the least responsibility on the day? Enjoy yourself!
That’s it for tonight’s Wedding Special. It looks like we are in for a wash-out tomorrow, before the weather starts to improve for next week. The best use of time tomorrow in the wet? A trip to your local independent wine shop to stock up ready for the good weather ahead. Amanda, Trish and I will be here tomorrow to pour a glass of Digby and meet your every wine-related need. Drop by and say hello.

Shane, Amanda, Esther, Nigel, Trish and Carol

Your wedding-loving, pup-adoring, double-mag-drinking wine team at Sheldon’s Wine Cellars

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