Can a sip of wine transport you to another place? The French countryside perhaps, the still, quiet sunshine of mid-summer.
Memories of languid holidays, long, balmy evenings, sun drenched terraces and of course that first wine of the day, something cool, crisp and dry.
It’s the smell that does it, filtering through to our olfactory bulb, which is also the home of long term memory and emotion. One sniff and you’re off! For a split second you’re back in the vineyard or by the pool or wherever it was you tasted and smelt something similar.
This is what happened to Rob Rinder when I poured him a glass of the club’s 2020 Château Le Coin Sauvignon Gris, Bordeaux, France. One sip and there it was – memories of happy times in Saint Emilion.
With a distinguished background in the legal profession it wasn’t a surprise to learn that the broadcaster and columnist has tasted a fair few rare vintages having sampled wines from the cellars of Inner Temple. But in a wide-ranging discussion touching on history, the origins of Champagne and the art of serving red wine with fish we agreed that you simply cannot delight in life unless you enjoy food and wine.
It was our club President Hugh Johnson who said: ‘nothing lifts the mood like a glass of Champagne,’ and so it was we started our tour in Champagne with one of the best non-vintages on the market, Charles Heidsieck before travelling, vicariously, down to Bordeaux for a glass of Sauvignon Gris where Miquita admitted that over the course of the series she has fallen in love with white wine.
We ended in South America with a red I suspected neither Miquita or Rob had tasted before – a Tannat from Uruguay.
Which wine did Judge Rinder enjoy the most? Listen to find out.