U3A groups learning about wine together
Normally we meet on the 3rd Wednesday monthly at 7pm to taste wines at the United Reform Church, with up to 6 wines being sampled and discussed.
We also like to travel and have been abroad twice in 2017 and 2018 to France - the Champagne Region and the Loire Valley, together with a more local trip to Buckinghamshire to visit the home of the Rothschild family - see above.
Three different U3As joined forces to enjoy a day of wine appreciation at Waddesdon Manor in Buckinghamshire. Broxbourne U3A wine appreciation group was joined by its counterparts in Hertford and Sawbridgeworth U3As, together with two members of Ware wine and beer group for a day dedicated to the subject which included a history tour of the house and a wine tasting event at the Manor’s cellars.
Waddesdon Manor in Aylesbury, is owned by the Rothschild family and bequeathed to the National Trust and is now managed by the Rothschild Foundation.
The 42 U3A members tasted six wines with two other wines added to the event by the sommelier.
Broxbourne U3A wine appreciation group convenor - Denis O’Shea said, “Each wine was tasted with information on grape variety and specific location with notes on the grower and the terroir. This tasting covered both banks of Bordeaux, alongside representation from Lafite’s projects in Chile and Argentina.
“We learnt about the Rothschild’s’ involvement in the wine industry in Europe and on other continents, and about how to taste wine properly.
“The two whites and four red wines – a ratio that reflects the Rothschild portfolio stylistically - ranged from £17.95 to £120 in a retail sense. Tasting different priced wines confirmed that price is not necessary a good guide as to whether or not we enjoyed a particular wine.
“We learnt so much from an expert who works in the wine trade. Taking part in a group wine tasting and sharing of views encouraged us to look for various aspects of wine including colour and “legs” that we might have otherwise not noticed.
“The event showed that one person’s idea of a good wine is not always the same as your neighbour.
“Organising this trip took considerable time and effort but was enjoyed by those attending. All together the shared contact with other U3A groups will open avenues on speaker sharing and possible projects in the future”.
The wines tasted:
1. Le Merle Blanc 2016 – single estate white wine from Ch.Clarke in Bordeaux
2. Baroness Nadine 2016 – produced using Chardonnay grapes collected from Elgin Valley In South Africa
3. Blason de L’Evangile 2014 - single vineyard Pomerol from a juicy vintage, Lafite’s only property on the right bank
4. Los Vascos Grande reserve 2014 – complex, layered and elegant – the 2nd cuvee of Los Vascos.
5. Caro 2014 – Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon from a high altitude vineyard in Mendoza.
6. Ch. Clerc Milon 2005 – A grand Cru Classe Pauillac from the legendary 2005 vintage.
7. A Carignan and a Malbec where added to the above by the sommelier.
Recently we have had to move towards Zoom meetings and have held a monthly wine quiz which has tested our Wine knowledge.
If you would like to be put in touch with the Leader of this Group, or want to find out more about what the Group does, please send us a message through the 'CONTACT' page of this website and we will get back to you by email or phone.
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