Friday, 28 May 2010

Stormhoek Pinotage £3.49

On the bottle: Big, rich and ripe, great with steak. Unpretentious.

In my mouth: Not that big or ripe, a little soft, with all the berry flavours you would expect from this South African wine.

Verdict: Would buy this Pinotage again and again, South Africa do make the best Pinotage for everyday drinking, smooth red wine that does not empty your pocket but warms the heart. Talking of heart, I hope Lily Florence is feeling better today, nasty thing that being burnt on her wee hands.
This laptop is beginning to irritate me, it pickup the cursor and suddenly you are typing somewhere else. Almost like the mouse has a mind of its own. It is time to look for a Notebook type laptop with at least 9 hours of battery life.
I have news of dissension in the Musmead Manor House, Mally fell off her bicycle and then was barrel by her horse. Nasty things horses, all teeth and hooves, just intent on doing damage. People ride them for, you know I am at a lose to know why, but they do and seem to enjoy the riggers of being bounced about on a bony back bone, as a man I do have bits that dangle between my legs and they do not take kindly to being bounced, strange that, let me know if you have come across similar outdoor punishment.
Back to the troubles, Mally seems to have had her happy mode dislodged and her grumpy mode enabled. This is a third hand report from Himself, Mus, Lord of Musmead Manor. Only Lord until 'She who must be obeyed enters the room.' Buying lights indeed, light bulbs are all that was needed. There she goes again on her Hippo Mobile, iPhone glued to her ear, following a German Camper bent on speeding in a 5 MPH zone, pity the German. Hope by the end of this bank holiday weekend Mally survives the workforce she has, maybe Memma will step into the breech and all will be well again.
Has anyone tried to find someone on Facebook with out a link to their page. Try it if you have an hour and loads of patience. Dark side of binary will win. Time for tea.


Namaqua Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc £ 2.99

On the bottle: Citrus and Tropical Fruit, crisp and dry finish.

In my mouth: Lightly oaked Chardonnay mellowed by the Sauvignon Blanc. Clean finish.

Verdict: Surprisingly good wine as it comes from the Elephant River region of South Africa.
Lily Florence burnt her wee hands on a hot oven. She is on the mend and no permanent damage done, just a lesson learnt. Angela has gone through the "I will not be the mummy of the year" and "Hopefully they will live to be teenages". Angela we do what we can, we do it to the best of our ability, you better then most but I was there when you were a wee girl, I took you around in the van while farming and you grew to be a great Mum. We all do the blaming ourselves bit, but let it go, Lily has, enjoy your growth into motherhood, it is over too fast. Take time to relish her progression, her growth and then, if you want and have the energy, plan for another. Susan says that two children are a family, one is an all consuming family. I see her reasoning and life will give you one or the other. Enjoy, what ever comes your way.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Tour Match against Bere Regis

U12's Cricket Match vs Bere Regis 25th May 6pm – Bere Regis 16 all out vs Poole 20 for 0 (2.5 overs)

Great evening for a cricket match. We put Bere Regis in to bat and the wickets started tumbling. George (Captain) opened the bowling and took a wicket with his seacond ball, an in swinging Yorker length ball taking the middle stump out. Being an 18 over game we expected to bowl for at least 16 over but alas that was not to be. All out in the 7th over for 16 runs. Our opening batsmen needed 3 overs to bat us to victory.
First cup match over and 5 to go before we can be crowned champions.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Stormhoek Sauvignon Blanc 2009

on the bottle: fruity Sauvignon Blanc, unpretentious. Hope you enjoy , seriously

in my mouth: Great grape flavours fill your mouth, leaving tiny bubbles of fruity bouquet behind.

Verdict: Seriously good wine but does get a little sweet towards the end of the bottle. I have previewed this wine before and remember it to be a good wine of noble character.
Tonight we have a U12's Cup match and this is one we hope to win as we are drawn to play Bournemouth in the next round and then the serious cricket starts, so hopefully tonight is Bales to Wales for our bowlers.
Gary has a query, how to comment on a blog. Angela can you point him in the right direction and anyone else who finds this a tricky affair. After all said and done Gary does have 'pips' instead of 'bits', so being on the dark side is not always apples and pears. Time to go and play cricket....

Monday, 24 May 2010

Georgian Smith opens Italian Deli

This day marks the opening of Georgian Smith's deli, packed full of products from the Claudosa area of Italy. Image to your right is an artists impression of what this Italian Deli should look like.
Middle Smiths are watching with interest, this new phenonmen, ex Hotelier and Farmer Russell Smith will be putting his incredible expertise into this venture. Those from Middle Earth are waiting for the next part of this opening, when they can buy online.
More to follow with an alarming story of mass murder.

Hardy’s Stamp of Australia – Semillon Chardonnay 2008 Vintage

On the bottle: This fruity, oak matured vintage Semillon has a crisp clean finish. (I think this is correct)

In my mouth: The fruity, grape bouquet is the first bubble that explodes in your mouth, this followed by subtle oak, vanilla warmth. A clean, rounded finish. High praise for an excellent bottle of wine.

Verdict: Under Dickens be proud, your winemakers have come through with an excellent well rounded white wine that will please even the most discerning of palates. Middle Earth will be awarding this wine a Wine of Distinction Award and as such will be freely available to all those who reside in Middle Earth. Again I recommend this to Musmead Manor, Middle Smiths and Markus Smith, if you are lucky enough to be able to buy this wine, then just do it, life is too short to drink poor wine.
Michael is over his first two examinations and is now totally focus on the next 5 this week. Robert is asking all the why questions and getting away with it. Never stop questioning all you learn and read, as that could change the world.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Keep it simple

Black coffee is simple, double decaf skinner latte is not. (in plain English – no caffeine, no butterfat in the milk and no sugar!!!)
Planting a seed is simple, Biology is not.
So let's start simple, plant a seed and see a flower grow, in time you can order a double decaffeinated skimmed milk latte.
Well this is something you can look forward to.
I did a little gardening today, not the sort that The Gardener does but a simple start. I noticed that the Day Lilies are getting near their end, so are the Bluebells. Soon I will have to take a spade to the garden and prepare for the summer. Talking of summer, today was a taster of what is to come, 19° C and no wind. Makes you think of lazy sunset after a day spent on the beach, BBQ cooking itself and the Sauvignon Blanc quenching your thirst. Oh we will rue the day we wanted the summer to warm our chilled souls.
Michael wrote PE and Biology today, GCSE's, came back to revise for the next examination, that could be a good thing or a desperate desire to do better in the next examination.
I have just cooked a very good broccoli soup. Broccoli soup is very versatile as you can add cream, allowing the natural broccoli freshness to come though. Adding parmesan almost makes it a creamy soup and mayonnaise will add that creamy tange.
How to cook it: Chop up a small onion, one small potato and a clove of garlic, sauté in a good dollop of olive oil, add a pinch of mixed herbs and a fresh chilli (chopped small). A medium size broccoli and 500 ml vegetable stock. Make sure the top of the broccoli is covered with liguid. Bring to the boil and then simmer until soft. Dash of fish sauce and season, this means salt and pepper, then serve with crusty bread.

Friday, 21 May 2010

Tesco South African White £3.25

On the bottle: Not much, the usual, fruity, smooth with a tropical bouquet.

In my mouth: Good grape flavour, fruity yes, if the grapes count.

Verdict: A good wine for the price. I notice in one of the comments from Angela, that she prefers the Savvy Blanc wines of Australia and New Zealand.

'I must admit I'm a bit of a Savvy Blanc girl so it's not often that Matt strays past the Savvy Blanc shelves. I can definitely recommend any Savvy Blanc's from the Margaret River area in Western Australia or from the Marlborough region in New Zealand.'(Wrote Angela)

Sauvignon Blanc is a good clean wine that, if not oak matured, will compliment any dish. I enjoy the winemaker's comments on what to have with the wine, but the really good recommendations read something like this. 'Enjoy with Fish or your favourite Pasta or just by itself.' Now that last bit appeals to me.
Enjoy your weekend and if you do manage to open a good bottle of wine please let me know. All comments welcome.

Talking of Angela, Lily Florence, part of the Under Dickens Clan, will be having a birthday soon, if we forget 'Happy Birthday Lily from all of us in Middle Earth'

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Collezione Italiana Soave £3.29

On the bottle: Straw coloured with an intense tropical fruit bouquet,

In my mouth: Sweet grape flavour with a crisp finish and a little sharp.

Verdict: Easy drinking, everyday wine that does not hurt your pocket. The Middle Smiths will know of this type of wine, having some of their roots in Italy, Merlin will not say thank you for this wine as her palate enjoys a well rounded wine, without the sharpness, tends to catches the back of your throat. This could in time become a favourite of all those Middle Earth inhabitants, there is a strong Italiana influence in some Middle Earth families, these date back to the Claudosa era.

Buy a bottle of Soave and do not expect too much, you could be surprised.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Lateral Sauvignon Blanc £5.75 (before discount)

In my mouth: A peach and citrus flavour, well rounded and surprisingly New World, with a dry crisp finish. Good light gold colour wine against a very simple label.

On the bottle: Fresh and fruity with peach and apple flavours with a light, crisp finish.

Verdict: One must always be wary with regards to Chilean Wine; they can be quite sharp and wooded. Both qualities we do not really want when having an easy drinking, light dry white. This particular bottle has surprised me and I will buy it again. The normal retail price of £5.75 is not worth it but with the 3 for £10 it brings it in line with other wines just over £3. I would caution anyone buying a bottle of Chilean wine for more that £3.50 as I really think you will be wasting your money.

Robert has asked "Dad, when will food be ready?" One can only marvel at mother nature's trigger to eat, eat, eat, you are a teenager. To satisfy the teenagers appetite is a constant challenge, I have experience and will come out victorious.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Kumala Colombard Chardonnay 2009 - £3.49

On the bottle: A crisp and refreshing taste with tropical fruit flavours.
In my month: Vanilla and grape, Vanilla is the dominate flavour, also leaves a hint of strawberry lingering on the top of your palate.
Verdict: Excellent Colombard Chardonnay character, Middle Smiths and Markus Smith will be able to over indulge in this relatively inexpensive wine and not have any guilt after three or four bottles, enjoyed around the pool. Under Dickens do you get this wine down under? If so buy the odd bottle and enjoy. Mally of Musmead Manor has been quoted as saying that this is one of her favourite wines, and I believe has a case or two tucked away in her tipi.
What a game of cricket yesterday, Michael on his debut for Poole Town 4th opened the bowling and took 3 quick wickets. Poole won by 170 odd runs. but as a spectators, a very chilly game to watch, stiff breeze, overcast and the threat of rain saw us all huddle in warm coats, summer is almost here (officially )and we have not seen a hint of spring yet, bring on global warming.
Not to forget Robert, 100% in his maths exam and then followed up with another A+ for history, the boy does not put enough effort in. Come on lets get that all important homework down.

Budavar 2008 Sauvignon Blanc £3.29

On the bottle: A fruity and zesty wine with typical Sauvignon Blanc character

In my mouth: A grassy note with the very lightest hint of grape.

Verdict: This German wine is an everyday drinking, singing wine that hits the right spot if you like your wine crisp and dry. Markus Smith, also of Middle Earth Fame, will find this to be a good wine to accompany his Rump, Salad and Chips. The Musmeads and Middle Smith might have the opinion that this is one step too far, when it comes to the relative dryness of a Sauvignon Blanc. Fear not as the next wine is a Kumala Colombard Chardonnay, this is featured in my next blog.
Winemakers on the Budavar Estate should take into account that those Middle Earth Dwellers, who stay down under, will not have heard of this wine, a marketing opportunity exists, as those Under Dickens are slowly becoming a force to be reckoned with. There is now 3 of them as opposed to 2 a year ago.
Michael has finally finished formal schooling and has had the customary shirt signing and fond farewells, until next week when they all start writing exams, play time over now, serious studying to be done.

Friday, 14 May 2010

Michael' Prom Night

Michael is on his way to his Prom!!! This is his last days of formal schooling, 16 years have flown. He goes onto 6th form, A levels, AS levels. They have numerous names for these extra years of schooling but they equate to my Standard 9 and Matric. He will say goodbye to more than half of the pupils in his class and embrace higher learning, and go on to a University. His desire to be a teacher, first and then a farmer. He is very grown up and understands that he needs the qualifications first and then he will be able to further his education and study some form of rural occupation. He is very interested in Soil Science and Animal Husbandry, but with most of the farmers being tenant farmers, it takes knowledge and a big deposit to get your feet on the land. He has an affinity with the land and with animals, also a natural leader and will do very well as a teacher. His ability to communicate with all ages, will allow his intrinsic talent to develop.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Hardy Chardonnay Varietal Selection 2009 £4.00

On the bottle: This lively Chardonnay has rich varietal melon and peach flavour and a crisp, dry finish.
In my mouth: Loads of grapes, a hint of wood, vanilla oak and gratefully smooth.
Verdict: We played Bere Regis last night and we won, convincingly (Under 12 Dorset County League). Opps the Broccoli is boiling and needs a bit of attention. What do you think of the political hung parliament? A new kind of government, Gordon Brown out, that is a shocker, Nick Clegg is now Vice President, no that’s wrong, Deputy Prime Minister. That is so fashionable, he has taken a few of his shadow ministers of the shadow ministers with him, now that is dark and retro.
I can not really believe we are into May already, spring seems to have gone astray and we are left with the cool winter air still holding off the rich and stronger summer air. I blame it on the Russians, sending their Siberian, icy air currents with the ash from Iceland. We live in troubled time and with our economy in the miserable state that it is in, the chill factors can not be calculated.
The wine, I deviate, good value for money, not an Under Dickens favourite but the Middle Smiths and Merlin will love. Middle Earth news is that Mus is vexed with farming matters and has reversed the role as the dominate Musmeader and is whipping Mally on to new heights.

Monday, 10 May 2010

Cricket on any Sunday

Sherbourne, fine quality town in the heart of the Purbecks, fielded a team with character and talent, fish and chips included, beating Poole Sunday 2nd's by 2 wickets and creative batting. I did note that Poole Saturday 4th's pulled off a memorable victory against Parley, head are down in that neck of the woods. Maybe Mus from Middle Earth should offer his exceptional talent as a coach and pull them back to the glory days. Michael opened the bowling and caught and bowled their star batsman in his first over. Hear end the lesson.

First Cape – Chenin Blanc £3.34

On the bottle: Environmental Commitment, blah, blah, blah!!. Have they nothing else to say.

In my mouth: Fresh, light and easy drinking, with a yeasty flavour left hanging on your palate.

Verdict: Hang on to your money, this is not worth the £3.34 you will have to fork out. Middle Smiths start a policy of boycott, do not let the South African wine makers dump their below standard wines on this very lucrative UK market. You have the influence, exercise your rights. Under Dickens hold your head up high, your wines, on average, are of a better quality. Musmeads, Memma I single you out, tell your farmer friends to stay clear of this under flavoured fruit juice with a touch of alcohol thrown in and stick to the old fashioned pint.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Contents of the forth coming Chronicle

Christmas and all the tradition that this festive season brings.
New Year brings laughs and a little regret.
The Big Freeze cooling global warming.
New additions to the family.
Georgian Deli opens.
Down under scopes a back page special.
The Gardener is back.
Time has not been kind to me during the last two weeks, frustrating my attempts to finish off the latest version of this world acclaimed paper. Do not despair, it will be worth the wait.


Badgers Creek get its second mention

Badgers Creek : Rose Wine £3.79

On the bottle: Fresh, lightly fruited rose wine.

In my mouth: Smells like strawberries, tastes like nothing, no distinct flavour coming through. Yes it is slightly fruity, slightly sweet, slightly slightly with no real character.

Verdict: One of those wines that are easy to drink but do not leave you with any lasting impression. My advice to those Musmeads and Middle Smiths, is buy a bottle or two for those people from Middle Earth who know nothing about wine and usually drink mineral water. Those down under would know this wine and will steer well clear of it. I wonder what the Georgian Smiths would make of this!!!