The Season is full of opportunities to be and be seen at fabulous outdoor events. For me, that starts at Cheltenham Festival in March. My passion is horseracing, and I’ll be tipping the wines here as well as the horses. It goes without saying that the contents of your glass should be as stylish as your suit, so here are some vinous suggestions that will see you through spring and summer, at the races and beyond.
COATES & SEELY BRUT RESERVE NV Hampshire, UK
The ‘wines of Great Britain’ story continues to grow at a rapid rate. We currently produce around six million bottles a year, with sparkling wines accounting for nearly two third of that. One of my absolute favourites is the award-winning Coates & Seely Brut Reserve which is delicious, with complexity, elegance and stunning length. Look out for the vibrant, crisp and delicate Rosé NV too.
STOCKISTS: The Dorchester, The Savoy, Simpson’s, Sexy Fish, Annabel’s
KENDALL-JACKSON VINTNER’S RESERVE CHARDONNAY 2016 California, USA
Kendall-Jackson produce fabulous wines and their Chardonnay is a classic example of delicious, ripe tropical fruit from the cool, coastal regions of California, balanced with gentle oak-barrel ageing. Chairman Barbara Banke is a firm favourite of mine for her wine and horseracing credentials. She is heavily involved in thoroughbred horse-breeding too, and once even named a horse after me – Wine Tipster!
STOCKISTS: Penistone Wine Cellars, Sandhams, Hennings Wine, Hailsham Cellars, Amazon
CHAPEL DOWN BACCHUS 2017 Kent, UK
The Bacchus grape, named after the Roman god of wine, produces a dry, fresh, crisp wine, with lovely floral and fruit character. Chapel Down’s Bacchus is an excellent example of this style and can, in my opinion, be served at any and every summer occasion. I’ll be keeping my fridge stocked for both formal and impromptu moments.
CÔTES DE PROVENCE ROSÉ DE LÉOUBE 2017 Provence, France
This top-class, elegant and delicate dry organic rosé from the very picturesque Provence region in France is beautifully balanced, with flavours of strawberry and white peach. It works well as an aperitif but is also very food-friendly, matching with fish, shellfish and mildly spicy dishes too. This pink will be a popular choice during Cheltenham Festival and throughout the Season. Book a table or visit the elegant bar at The Wild Rabbit in Kingham, Oxfordshire, where this classy rosé is served by the glass from a magnum, and where the excellent Alyn Williams from the Westbury Hotel is Chef Patron. Further information at thewildrabbit.co.uk
STOCKISTS: Daylesford Organic, Kingham, daylesford.com, Waddesdon Manor