EAST DULWICH, 8th March – Around 7.20pm, I walk in to Green and Blue Wineson Lordship Lane. I have been invited along for a wine tasting and supper. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but I was certainly looking forward to it. After all, I am a great appreciator of wine (even if my knowledge is somewhat amateur) and food.
I was one of six to have been invited along through Twitter. I was first of the guests to arrive and Kate, the owner of Green and Blue greeted me, offered me a glass of wine and introduced me to her father who would also be joining us.
The second guest to arrive was Nik Darlington, and Kate was quick to point out that the two of us shared something in common. Nik and I had never met before, but we both follow each other on Twitter. This was the first sign that Kate was a fantastic host. Whether our shared interest and social media circle was the plan or a happy coincidence, the fact it was brought up was brilliant of her.
I have only ever been to one tasting event before – a whisky tasting in Oxfordshire, which was fantastic fun. The thing I took home most from that was how little I knew about scotch, yet there was no air of superiority between those who knew nothing and knew a lot. There was part of me that feared wine would be different; that we at least should know more about wine.
The fears were displaced as Kate reminds us that wine is, more than anything, about pleasure. While I cannot remember all of her introduction, it is clear that their ‘company philosophy’ is not just advertising copy placed to differentiate them in the wine market, they really believe it.
Kate knows her stuff about wine and the pleasure she finds from it really gets through to you as she’s talking about it. She – and the whole evening – was entirely unpretentious. If we preferred the less complex wine that was fine and with a couple of the wines, that was the case for me.
During dinner as Kate was sat with us, I raised my scepticism about the organic and biodynamic philosophy which they take. As she said, we have now gotten to the stage where we realise that an organic and well-raised chicken is going to taste far superior to a battery-farmed one, and we validate the cost. Yet, we have not yet made the same distinction with wine. The biggest argument of course, is that the mass-produced, non-organic wine is still very good. A lot of it is crap, but you can get some fantastic wines without going down the organic or biodynamic route. The first wine of our tasting was a comparison between Moet (which I now know the correct pronunciation of) and the Larmandier-Bernier Terre de Vertus. The Larmandier-Bernier was a fantastic champagne and you really could tell the difference from the Moet, which in comparison seemed to force bubbles upon you. Perhaps there’s something to this organic stuff, I thought.
The whole evening was perfect; great food (pumpkin for starter and absolutely stunning pork belly for the main), really brilliant company and great wine. I realise that I haven’t, as a professional food or wine critic might, gone into explicit detail about all of the wines and food.
I am not an expert, nor am I food or wine critic. I simply love food and wine, and for a wonderful evening in early spring, I was brought together with seven others who shared that passion. Convivial, passionate and educational; what more you could you want from an evening?
GREEN & BLUE, LORDSHIP LANE
38 Lordship Lane
T: 0208 693 9250
F: 0208 693 9260