Mardi Gras: Top 5 wines to feast with
IWSC General Manager Adam Lechmere shares his top 5 wines to enjoy with your pancakes this Shrove Tuesday
Dry January is hardly over, it seems, before Lent is upon us. Before the fast of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday comes the feast on Shrove Tuesday, the day when households would traditionally eat up all the leftover fat (Mardi Gras, of course, means Fat Tuesday) – in the west this happens in the form of crepes and pancakes.
And as no feast (or meal, in fact) is complete without wine, here are five suggestions – all IWSC winners – to go with your Shrove Tuesday pancakes.
Savoury fillings know no limits, but flavours and textures can be delicate. Anything with cheese (try goat’s cheese and herbs) demands something lean and fresh but with good fruit.
Pair: Jacob's Creek Steingarten Riesling 2015
Where to buy: WineStar, £14.12
Smoked salmon blinis
They’re pancakes, of course, topped with soured cream, smoked salmon and herbs – and really the only choice is a very good Champagne.
Pair: Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut 2006
Where to buy: Amazon, £110
As with savoury pancakes, there are infinite sweet pancake fillings, from the simple sugar and lemon to the searing Cointreau sweetness of Crepes Suzette, plus gooey chocolate, banana, maple syrup… the list goes on. As a rule of thumb, the sweeter the filling, the sweeter the wine.
Pair: Blandy's 1980 Terrantez
Where to buy: Wine.com, $209.99
It’s practically impossible to list the varieties of cheese and the complexities of choice. Remember that cheese is one of the most difficult food groups to match with wine, so we’re going to suggest just two, a hard cheese and a soft. For the soft, like a camembert or chaourcé, you need a delicate, fresh white like the excellent Bolney Estate Bacchus; hard cheeses demand fresh, bright, fruited reds – so if you’re having Manchego, or Lincolnshire Poacher, to name just two fine, textured cheeses, try a Chianti or Rioja.
Pair: Bolney Wine Estate Bacchus 2015
- “As a start-up brand you focus hard on achieving credibility and creating awareness. Winning Gold Outstanding and the Mezcal Trophy provided us with a level of credibility and exposure that we simply could not have achieved on our own. The awards helped secure key listings in Harvery Nichols and Selfridges and certainly played a significant part in opening up dialogue with potential U.S importers and ultimately securing one. I thought hard about which competition to enter and what the return on that investment would be. I can say with absolute confidence that the IWSC was worth every penny.”David ShepherdFounder & Director, Corte Vetusto
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- “The IWSC represents everything, without a doubt. There's no better competition in the world where you can judge yourself not just against your countrymen but against the rest of the world.”Andy AndersonWinemaker, Takapoto Estate
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- “It's one of the greatest international awards you can get. It's similar to an Oscar, if you like.”Lenz MoserWinemaker, Yantai Changyu Pioneer Company
- “Because of the number of international judges that are tasting the wines and the number of wines that are being entered, it’s a great privilege for us to receive this award. The history of the competition, the standing that it has amongst the international wine world and certainly amongst one’s peers, to be able to get an award at the IWSC means a lot. There are a lot of competitions around the world – this probably represents the top award you could get as a winemaker.”Gary & Kathy JordanWinemakers, Jordan Wine Estate
- “It’s a great honour to win especially as nowadays people are focusing on the quality not just the numbers, so it does mean a huge amount getting recognition from an institution as well sought after as the IWSC.”Chris BlandyOwner, Blandy's Wines
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