It’s an odd business, writing copy a month in advance. On a balmy October day you find yourself contemplating Christmas, cold evenings, warming reds. You’re thinking of Ports, flying out of the door like there’s no tomorrow, when for the remaining 49 weeks of the year you sell one a month if you’re lucky. We are writing this article at the start of the busiest week of the year – a week three-fold busier than a normal week, yet we’re thinking ahead to early January, when lots of you will be forswearing alcohol and almost all of us will be tightening our belts and looking back on the year just ended.
Not to be outdone by newspaper supplements, Prohibition Wines thought it would indulge in a spot of reflection. 2014 was a bit of a rollercoaster ride, starting a little flat after all the highs of December and then descending into the pits when we and many others in Muswell Hill lost power, meaning we couldn’t open for most of a week. Unfortunately that was the week of Valentine’s Day. But for all the lows at the beginning it drew to a close on a high note when we found out we had won a Wines from Rioja award for small retailer of the year and a Time Out London award for favourite shop in Muswell Hill. So a big thank you to all our customers for their support in 2014.
We’ve lost a few friends this year by way of closures of fellow local traders. It’s tough on the High Street, especially in January. Hopefully your local independents will have had a good Christmas, good enough to keep them going until next Christmas. So if you cherish your local High Street, keep supporting it and shopping locally in 2015.
If you haven’t given up post-Christmas, here are a few good value Wintery tipples.
Ciu Ciu Bacchus Rosso Piceno 2013 (£9.95)
A blend of Sangiovese and Montepulciano from Le Marche, Italy, vibrant, ripe juicy berries and a little vanilla.
Cantina Cellaro Nero D’Avola Solea 2013 (£9.95)
More Italian, this time heading down to Sicily. Spicy and taught, balanced with ripe fruit and good body and length.
Curatolo Arini Paccamora Alcamo Bianco 2013 (£9.95)
And a white from Sicily, Grillo and Cattarato grapes. Very ripe apricots and flint on the nose, full rounded ripe lemon, pear and peach on the palate, and an intense ripe fruit finish
El Castro de Valtuille Mencía Joven 2013 (£10.95)
Ripe fresh juicy raspberries, slightly savoury notes and ripe silky tannins. Mencía is an indigenous grape from North West Spain, gaining increasing recognition here. Give it a whirl and brighten up the dark January days.