There are several kinds of wine retailer, but I can broadly divide them as follows: those I grudgingly accept (supermarkets, Nicolas), those that make me feel mildly enthusiastic (Oddbins, still, most of the time), and those that totally rock. The Wine Society totally rocks. Somehow they manage to pull off the troublesome trick of selling wine to loads of people while offering quite a personal service. They genuinely come across as wine-loving geeks, rather than corporate twits (viz the BBR episode of BBC4’s current Wine series). Other than going totally over-the-top mad about every en primeur offer, they are dangerously low on faults. Their wines are keenly priced – where they stock the same wine as the supermarkets their price normally comes out lower – and their selection is interesting.
Having complained before about how expensive half-decent Pinot Noir is, here’s the exception that proves the rule: £5.95 should not buy you this kind of flavour explosion. I tend to get one of these with every mixed case, but I really should make sure there’s always a couple of bottles in the house. A pleasure, every time.
Sorry about the lack of complexity to this post, but I had to write it in the time it took my wife to brush her teeth.