What a difference ten days, lots of sportsmanship and a whole bunch of medals makes. Thoughts of security hassles, transport meltdown and persistent, torrential rain have been banished. Instead we’re proud to be British, we’ve become “experts” in sports we’ve never actually seen before and there’s even some smiling and chatting on the London underground. Hurrah for the Olympics!
If you’re lucky enough to have tickets to visit one of the venues then you’ll also get the chance to buy the “official” Olympic wines. These have been sourced for London 2012 (can I use that phrase?) by UK wine merchant Bibendum.
There are three wines – a white, a rosé and a red. All of them are from the 2012 vintage, which means, as our grapes are still doing their thing on the vine, they are from the southern hemisphere.
The white and the rose are Fairtrade wines from Stellenbosch in South Africa. The Chenin Blanc is fruity with a peachy-melony tropical aroma and peachy and citrus taste. The nice crisp acidity made it a refreshing tipple while sitting in the shade of the Olympic Stadium.
The red is produced by the host of the next Summer Games – Brazil. This is a less well known wine nation – but if fellow South Americans Chile and Argentina are anything to go by it has a bright future…and of course a booming economy. This wine is a blend of Shiraz and Tempranillo with a touch of Gamay too. That’s the grape more usually associated with Beaujolais. This is a bright, fruity red. There are no hard tannins and it slips down very easily. Juicy raspberry flavours are accompanied with just a hint of peppery spice.
Each costs £5.20 for 187ml (that’s equivalent to a medium sized glass of wine in a pub) or £19.50 for a bottle. They’re all packaged in recyclable plastic.
I’m afraid The Analyst and I were very restrained and didn’t try the rosé, which is a blend of Pinotage, Shiraz and Merlot.
Verdict – both wines are easy-drinking tipples. They have moderate alcohol levels and nothing which would offend the casual drinker. I suspect, however, that the memories of the Olympic sport will last much longer than the Olympic wines – but that’s how it should be.
For more on the three wines see the short video review produced by Pete Turner of the drinker.co.uk.