If there’s one thing I have in common with my little sister it’s liking a glass of wine of an evening. Or lunchtime. Well…anyway! She was obviously my first choice for a date when I was invited to go and try the wine tasting at Veeno in their St Paul’s location.
I’ve never been to a wine tasting before (well, not in this country anyway) but I was relieved to see it’s not one of those affairs where you are expected to waste perfectly good wine by spitting in a bucket. I was also pleased to see an enormous board of amazing nibbles to go with our wine!
There were 6 bottle of wine lined up on our table – two white, a rose, two red and a dessert wine. We were given a booklet about the wine, and the particular nibble we should try with it.
We started off with a wine called Tipune which is made with a type of grape called Grillo. All the wines are Sicilian, which wasn’t a region I’d explored before wine wise (I’m a New Zealand wine lover!) This one was the driest of the bunch, and it was delicious. The sommelier was very knowledgable and keen to tell us lots about all the wines and processes used to make them, and I thought I wouldn’t like this one because it was oaked but it turns out not all oaked wines are yucky!
We had the second wine with some pecorino cheese, much to my delight as I love sheep’s cheese (as long as I don’t think about it too hard. How do you milk a sheep?!) This one was a lot fruitier – apparently the bigger the grape, the fruitier the taste. Which makes sense I suppose! I found that this one had a really intense flavour that went right up my nose – not in a bad sneezing everywhere kind of way, it was really interesting.
We moved on to the rose and the cured meats – speck to be exact. It was really interesting to learn about how and why the wine complemented the food. I don’t think the sommelier appreciated my joke about rose being a mix of red and white wine together – he probably just thought I was a bit stupid! Though I did think it was made with skin off red grapes, but that’s not true – it’s just drunk at an earlier stage! So rose is red wine that people are too impatient to wait for basically…
The first red is the one they expect not everyone to like – but I loved it. I thought it was really light and drinkable, which had the sommelier and Josie scratching their heads as they both thought it was very full bodied and rich. Clearly my tastebuds are all heathens. We had this one with garlicky bresaola, it was very good.
The last red was the one which had taken the longest to age (about 14 months) and I wasn’t really a fan, but my sister quite happily knocked back both samples! I did enjoy the gorgonzola accompaniment though…
Our last sample was the dessert wine which went down very well with a light and creamy helping of homemade tiramisu! Lovely and light.
We really enjoyed our evening – it’s really very good value for money and the samples of wine you get are very sensible, so you don’t roll out the door (although you might because you are so full after all the delightful nibbles and tiramisu). You can buy bottles of the wine to take away with you if you like as well, or even order them by the case on the Veeno website. As an interesting aside for those similarly afflicted – Josie is allergic to sulphates in wine, and she gets a rash on her neck. Although these wines all claimed to have them in, she didn’t do her usual human litmus paper trick, so they must be sparse.
It was especially lovely to leave and enjoy the view of one of London’s loveliest buildings!
Disclaimer: we were invited to try a Veeno wine tasting free of charge for the purposes of this review. All thoughts, opinions and images are my own as always.