France, France and, Westminster
Considerably later this week than is my norm but forgive me, 24 hours, is a long time in Politics. A smattering of inbound goodies from Bordeaux and starting with a St-Émilion Grand Cru 2009 at £ 22.50 (10 cases) and graduating right across the other famous Bordeaux communes. Also Premier Cru (Red) Burgundy 2010 from £ 22.00 and a smattering of other Pinot Noir & Chardonnay.
I have tried plenty this week but a couple that should feature next week: a tip-top Cahors Malbec and a Kiwi Pinot Noir. And depending upon price, maybe a 5-grape Bordeaux blend from Paarl, South Africa.
Despite the ongoing rollercoaster of the £-E we are mitigating out any price increases on at least 80% of wines and bizarrely on a couple of wines, even a lower price.
Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition. Yet given these last two years, perhaps we should have. Still, so few calling it that it doesn’t inspire too much confidence in the pundits. After voting three times yesterday I was going to do my usual thing and go to bed early but on a hunch I decided to flick on the idiot box at 10 o’clock. Still haven’t been to bed. Instead of settling upon that middle class staple, Aunty Beeb, I was reversing backwards from Sri Lanka’s solid win over India and thus stumbled across I.T.V. and the next 8¾ were, a lost night’s sleep. It was riveting, to a degree and a bit like the Eurovision without the music. I have to say that Tom Bradby performed with consummate ease and for my shilling was lighter, brighter, more seamless than the B.B.C. His comment “the loser was the winner and the winner the loser” was pretty apt yet the best insight I think came from David Blunkett. Wasn’t expecting that.
Having two political exes, George “Little” Osborne & Ed “Strictly” Balls was a good call and they behaved with comparative and rare civility to each other. The best insight I think came from David Blunkett. Wasn’t expecting that. Interesting times that is for certain. First Downton Abbey now outgunning David Dimblebey. Whatever next?
Two lots of customers appeared this week to say that they had just rolled out of Six, Portland Road so I felt compelled to go. We are not talking Michelin Start here but a simple, neighbourhood local and with an above average 3-course lunch for £ 18.50 (Kensington Place at £ 25.00), definitely worth the slide down the hill into Holland Park. It was a firm reminder of how France was to eat out 25-30 years ago. Simple, honest, Prix Fixe. A mish-mash on the wine list but in amongst, a good half-a-dozen with tempting bottle-age (1995 Chinon; 1998 Mas de Daumas Gassac; 2004 Nebbiolo; 2008 Chianti & Gevrey) my top-end temptation was Barbaresco “Pajé” 2011 Roagna at £ 97.00. Not cheap but you’d easily pay £ 65-75 off a shelf. Add a nought to the bill and you could instead have dinner for three at Koji, with one drink each and good though it is, still continue eating afterwards at home. Koji is just by Parson’s Green. £ 18.20 (+ service) for a G&T (Monkey 47) typically helps to make this an annual pilgrimage rather than a weekly endeavour for me. Shame.
Wednesday 21st June (5-9 p.m.) - Kensington Church Street – Open Evening
Sunday 9th of July (Noon kick-off) – The Churchill Arms Street Party