January has rolled around and it's that time of year where we all turn our attentions to new year resolutions. Personally whilst I'm all about the "new year new me" (6th year in row I've decided to run a marathon - marathons completed: 0) I'm also a staunch realist. So, if like me, your record #DryJanuary effort is around the 4th, I have one piece of advice - drink less, drink better!
Trade up your Thursday night Prosecco for a Champagne. Afterall, if you're going to be drinking less then make sure you're drinking the best! What could possibly be a more decadent treat than a glass of the good stuff?
When it comes to choosing which Champagne to treat yourself to there are arguably no bad choices! However, I always like to go slightly off the beaten track and tend to eschew the Grand Marques for smaller less heralded producers - Guy Laforge is a cracking example! Alternatively, English sparkling wine is continuing to impress - give one of those a try if you've not yet!
Forget your NZ Sauvignon Blanc, treat yourself to a classic Sancerre! The astronomical rise of Kiwi Sauvignon Blanc has been the wine industry's defining feature of recent years. It's easy to see why it reached its current level of ubiquity, crisp and refreshing, bursting with fruit and a trademark aromatic aroma, when done well NZ Sauvignon is delicious! However, hundreds of years before New Zealand had even seen a grape the French region of Sancerre was producing stunning wines from the Sauvignon Blanc grape
My favourite example of this classic style is the Sancerre Les Cailottes. Clean, smooth with a long minerally finish this is a fabulous example of just why Sancerre is still at the pinnacle of dry white wines. It's also organic (so must be good for you) and comes in a half bottle - allowing you to enjoy this wine virtually guilt free!
Indulge in a big, rich, warming red. The nights are still cold; the weather is wet - this time of year really does call for a proper glass of red to warm the soul. There are so many fantastic options available, a mature Rioja or a herbaceous Chianti, a rich Malbec or a spicy Shiraz. But for me I'm picking Barolo.
Made in North West Italy from the Nebbiolo grape, Barolo is deceptively light in colour but jam packed full of ripe mouth coating tannin. The Araldica Barolo Flori is a particularly fine example. Bright cherry fruit backed up with earth undertones and just enough acidity to prevent the lip smacking tannin from being overwhelming.
Go on, make one new year's resolution that's easy to stick to... drink better!
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