THE owner of an Edinburgh shop has devised a novel experience to entertain the Fringe crowds: Wine Travel on Home Street. Valerie Blanc of Provenance Wines, Tollcross, has joined playwright Clare Duffy to produce a time-travel wine tasting.
The idea is to offer a lyrical journey through four wines. Duffy has written a one-hour show for Blanc which she hopes will be a sensory delight for the audience, taking them on from the beginnings of civilisation to the discovery of the New World.
“I am a radical terroirista – I really want to show people that wine tastes of the place it was created,” says Blanc. “I hope the beautiful language of Clare’s stories will give audiences a new way to explore wine.”
Duffy’s story starts with a tasting of white Lebanese wine from the famous Musar winery – a youthful white Musar for early drinking made from viognier, vermentino and chardonnay.
The audience will then be whisked off to the pilgrim trails of northern Spain. Near Santiago de Compostella is the cool wet region of Rias Baixas, where the albarino grape grows particularly well, producing distinctive unoaked whites. This grape’s lively acidity and rich texture appeals to both sauvignon blanc and chardonnay lovers.
Next stop is Montpellier in southern France, the home of the Crusades – where Languedoc vineyards once cultivated by Romans are now being revived. Pic St Loup is still classified within the huge Coteaux du Languedoc, but it will not be too long before this area has an appellation of its own. Characterful reds are made from similar grapes to Cotes du Rhone further east: syrah, grenache and mourvedre.
Finally, Duffy and Blanc will lead their audiences to the New World, weaving in stories about wine and gold – while serving a robust Argentinian malbec.
I sampled the four wines and was impressed with their quality. At £10 a ticket, this is a great-value, novel Fringe experience – and a chance to support a new independent shop.
• Wine Travel on Home Street; tickets £10, Mon-Sat 4pm; Sun 1pm and 8pm, until 31 August (except 20).
Provenance Wines, 39 Home Street, Tollcross, Edinburgh, tel: 07741 746181, www.prov enancewines.com
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