On the Grapevine

White Delights

Friday, 25 July 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 30 By Colin Kaye
The other day, someone looked at the selection of bottles on the kitchen wine rack and drily commented that “Mud House” is a peculiar name for a wine. Well, perhaps…

The Sound of Music

Friday, 18 July 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 29 By Colin Kaye
If you were to wander around the Yealands Estate vineyards in New Zealand, you might be surprised to hear the strains of classical music coming from loudspeakers. The music is…

Ten Green Bottles

Friday, 11 July 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 28 By Colin Kaye
The origins of Ten Green Bottles like so many other folksongs have faded into history. It was always thought to be an English song and possibly from Yorkshire, although one…

Simple Pleasures

Friday, 04 July 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 27 By Colin Kaye
It’s that time of year when most Americans celebrate the 1776 Declaration of Independence which announced, among other things, that the thirteen American states could manage quite well on their…

Size Matters

Friday, 27 June 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 26 By Colin Kaye
Here’s today’s Quiz Question, so sit up straight and try to look as though you’re interested. Now then, what’s the capacity of a standard bottle of wine? And stop messing…

Fallen Arches

Friday, 20 June 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 25 By Colin Kaye
You probably remember that old song called Sur le Pont d’Avignon (“On the Bridge of Avignon”) upon which, so the song tells us, everyone danced. The Bridge of Avignon (more…

Spritzy Iberians

Friday, 13 June 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 24 By Colin Kaye
Think of Portugal, think of Port. At least, that’s what people used to say decades ago when Portugal was known for little else. Except Madeira of course, that other fortified…

The Original Zin

Friday, 06 June 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 23 By Colin Kaye
Ask any American to name their country’s most well-known wine and the chances are they’ll tell you it’s Zinfandel, known affectionately as “Zin”. Mention the name Zinfandel to the average…

As Italian as…

Friday, 30 May 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 22 By Colin Kaye
Now here’s something. Did you know that a third of the world’s wine comes from Italy? Looking around the local shops, you’d never have guessed. Apart from Italian specialist shops…

Down the Road from Adelaide

Friday, 23 May 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 21 By Colin Kaye
If you were to head out of Adelaide, Australia’s fifth-largest city and drive with the thundering traffic on to the South Eastern Freeway, you’d find yourself passing close to places…

A Case of Bangorrhea

Friday, 16 May 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 20 By Colin Kaye
And that’s another thing. Have you noticed how exclamation marks are creeping into almost everything? Every Christmas, one of my old school-friends sends me - and presumably everyone else -…

Parker Points the Way

Friday, 09 May 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 19 By Colin Kaye
If you have only the vaguest interest in wine, you’ve probably come across the name Robert M. Parker Jr. or at least have heard the expression “Parker Points”. Robert Parker…

Tutti Frutti

Friday, 02 May 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 18 By Colin Kaye
If those words take you back to 1955 and the song of the same name, sung by one Richard Wayne Penniman, better known perhaps as Little Richard, then you’re older…

Swig Something Simple

Friday, 25 April 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 17 By Colin Kaye
When the Dutch settlers first attempted to make wine in South Africa in the 1650s, it was not a spectacular success. By all accounts, it was undrinkable. Wine production didn’t…

The Town among the Vines

Friday, 18 April 2014 Issue Vol. XXII No. 16 By Colin Kaye
My first glimpse of the medieval French town of Carcassonne was on a grey and dismal December day when I was driving, rather aimlessly I admit, from Northern Spain towards…
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