WARE WINE & BEER CIRCLE
MEETINGS IN 2005
2005
December: Annual Cook and Taste

17 members got together at Place House for the Annual Cook and Taste. We enjoyed starters of prawns, roast vegetable pate, sardines and tomatoes on toast and 'faisselles' (cream cheese with chives on country bread). The main courses were roast turkey, fruity lamb casserole and beef and walnut casserole, accompanied by roast potatoes, tian of root vegetables and winter root mash with buttery crumbs. The desserts were Christmas Pudding & Brandy Sauce/cream, Cranberry & Ricotta Cheesecake, Chocolate & Apricot Pudding with Glossy Choc Sauce, and Fruit Salad. For those who still had some room, there was cheese and biscuits as well. The hall was made festive with a fibre-optic Christmas tree, balloons and the table was decorated, courtesy of Margaret Byford. A very enjoyable evening.

Photo Gallery

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December: Ware Christmas Festival
Mulled wine was provided to the cold and thirsty public of Ware at the Christmas Festival in Tudor Square. 11 gallons of red wine, supplemented by orange juice, water and sugar, was heated up and served to the public, some of whom came back for seconds and even thirds! We sold out early, again, leaving some people disappointed. The rain held off until we had virtually finished packing up. Over 290 was raised and the profits will go to the Pinewood School.
WWBC stall at Ware Christmas Festival                                              WWBC stall at Ware Christmas Festival

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November: Commercial Wine Tasting by Nick Oakley of Oakley Wine Agencies
Nick Oakley presented a comparison tasting of Portuguese and Argentinean wines to 26 members and guests from Hoddesdon wine circle. One of the bottles of Argentinean Chardonnay was corked, which gave some members the chance to experience a corked wine; all the other bottles were OK as they had synthetic corks. Apparently, Argentina has recently experienced a very severe drought - no rain at all from November 2004 until August 2005! The wines tasted were as follows:
Phebus Chardonnay 2004 Mendoza, Argentina 4.99
Marques be Borba, white 2004 Alentejo, Portugal 5.99
Phebus Malbec 2004 Argentina 4.99
Tagus Creek, Shiraz & Trincadeira 2004 Portugal 4.99
Phebus Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 Mendoza, Argentina 4.99
Star Mountain Tinta Roriz & Trincadeira 2003 Portugal 5.99
Trincadeira J P Ramos 2003 Alentejo, Portugal 7.50
Fabre Montmayou, Merlot   Mendoza, Argentina 6.99

A very interesting tasting. If anyone wishes to buy any from Nick, he can be contacted via his web site or by
The Annual Inter-Society competition was also held this evening between Ware and Hoddesdon. Hertford decided not to attend because of the fog. The judge was Alan Downes, assisted by Graham Loxton-Best. The results were as follows:
Table Dry White 1st Elaine Robinson 2nd Peter Byford 3rd Brian Lowe
Table Dry Red 1st Peter Robinson 2nd Brian Lowe 3rd Kevin Martin
Table Sweet White 1st Peter Robinson 2nd Keith Barltrop 3rd Brian Lowe
Table Sweet Red 1st Elaine Robinson 2nd Brian Lowe 3rd Keith Barltrop

Ware were the winners by 21 points to 15.

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November: Square Dance
The Annual Square Dance was held at Presdales School in Ware. Over 100 club members, their guests, and friends from Pinewood School  were taken through their dance steps by caller Ted Ivin. Over 350 was raised from raffle sales and a share of the ticket sales for Pinewood School. A ploughman's supper was provided by the club's committee members.

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October: Martin Knight (local vineyard owner)
Martin has visited the club several times previously. He started his vineyard 26 years ago and produced his first wine 3 years later. He grows the following grapes - Seyval, Reichensteiner, Huxelrebe, Pinot Noir, Muller-Thurgau, Rondo, Triomphe-Alsace, Gamay. He has problems with mildew on the Reichensteiner and Muller-Thurgau grapes and has rarely produced any wine from them; but is hopeful for this year. He sprays the grapes with sulphite and copper. The copper spray on the Gamay grapes delays the ripening of the grapes for 4-6 days each time he sprays, and also helps to keep the birds off the grapes! The Seyval grape is quite prolific; he has picked 3 tons from 1 acre this year, even after pruning in the spring to remove some of the flowers! Martin does not make his own wine; this is done by a winemaker in East Sussex.
Martin brought along 3 wines for the members to try - a sparkling Seyval (2002 11.5%) - which is a new venture for him; a dry Seyval (2003 11%); and a Triomphe-Alsace-Gamay blend (2003 11%). At the moment Martin can only sell wines by the case from his vineyard as he needs a retail licence to sell by the bottle! And he needs to take an exam to get the licence.
Thanks to Martin for an interesting talk and tasting.
There was also a competition - table dry white and liqueur - judged by Daphne Grant. Results are as follows:
table dry white - 1st Elaine Robinson, 2nd Peter Byford, 3rd Dave Kenney, 4th Don Maguire;
liqueur - 1st Colin Lovett, 2nd Elaine Robinson, 3rd Kevin Martin, 4th Peter Robinson.
There were 25 entries in the competition, well done everyone!

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September: Hertford Archives - John Lambert
John explained the processes involved in the repair and restoration of documents and books held at the Hertford Archive office. Apparently, all documents are washed to remove the grime of the past centuries. A lot of damage can be removed so that the documents can be handled by the public who are carrying out historical research; this includes selotape and fire damage to photos! But paint is impossible to remove. So, if anyone has old documents, then look after them. John can be contacted at the Archive office for advice.
An unusual and interesting talk; thanks to John for the talk, and to Kevin for organising it.

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August: Annual BBQ
17 members and guests attended the annual club BBQ, which was hosted this year by Kevin. Kevin also did all of the cooking as the club's usual BBQ chef - Colin - spent a fair bit of Sunday at the QEII hospital, and was therefore indisposed. Nothing too serious as he and Mary arrived just as the cooking was finished and he was able to enjoy the afternoon. The sun shone and was quite hot, so most of us sought some shade whilst we ate chicken, sausages and various salads prepared by the members.
Thanks to Kevin for hosting the event and for doing the cooking; thanks also to Mary for preparing the meat, and to everyone for preparing the rest of the food.

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August: Annual Computerised Wine Drive
23 people, including 4 guests from Hoddesdon and 2 ex-members, entered 13 bottles in the Annual wine drive. The members, split into teams of 1 or 2 people, judge one another's wines in a series of comparative tastings, the idea being that each wine is tasted at least once against every other wine, and each team gets to have a chat with every other team. The results are then entered into the computer and a league table develops with the results.
The results were as follows: 1st Peter Robinson, 2nd Elaine Robinson, 3rd Colin Lovett, 4th Eddie Hunt. The commercial wine - from Morocco - came 8th.
Afterwards, Ruth Tite - the club's President - and Elaine presented the trophies and certificates to the winners from the recent Annual Show. Thanks to Eddie hunt for co-ordinating the engraving of the trophies.

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July: Annual Quiz Nite organised by Dave and Sue Kenney
13 people entered the Annual Quiz, mostly in teams of 2! The quiz was different this year in that all the questions were handed out on paper, with multiple choice answers. The quiz master - Dave Kenney - then allowed us a certain amount of time to answer each round, before handing the answers in to marked by Sue. The questions were very varied, and test the members brains. The winners were Richard Tite and M C Black. Well done to them, and well done to Dave and Sue for setting the quiz.

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July: Annual Show
9 competitors entered 98 bottles in 8 classes this year. Unfortunately, the food classes were withdrawn due to lack of support. All the bottles entered in the show prior to the day arrived, and arrived early. The show was completely staged by 9.25am! The 3 judges also arrived early, so judging started well before 10am. An eary start meant an early finish. Judges and stewards partook of a salad lunch; the judges then had to dash off to the car park as the 4 hours allowed now in Kibes Lane was up and they did not want a parking ticket! The bottles were then packed up ready for the competitors to collect. Thanks to the judges and the stewards, and to the members who provided the lunch. Well done to all the winners.
Click here for WORD results.

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June: Annual Walk led by Ruth and Richard Tite
9 members took part in the Annual Walk led by Ruth and Richard Tite. This year we met at the Goat Pub in Hertford Heath and set off along footpaths and bridleways. We passed through a field of friendly horses and managed to avoid getting stung by stinging nettles. Annual Walk
Haileybury School The footpath eventually led us into the grounds of Haileybury School. We were then joined by M C Black who told us a little of the history of the school, as he used to teach there. Then back through the woods to the pub and a welcome pint. Thanks to Ruth and Richard for organising the walk.

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May: Wales & West 2005
Report by Peter Robinson

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May: Wine Tasting by Graham Loxton Best
Members and guests from Hoddesdon Wine Guild listened to a short talk by Graham Loxton-Best about how the UK wine trade has changed since 1960. Graham mentioned some long-forgotten stores such as International Stores, Pay-and-Take, MacFisheries, Peter Dominic and Stowells of Chelsea; and also some wine names that are remembered but not seen today - Victory Burgundy, Cyprus Sherry, El Murano, VP Wines and Sherries, Emva Sherry, Blue Nun, Bulls Blood and Black Tower.
This was followed by a blind wine tasting. We had to guess the country and grape of 6 wines. The wines were as follows:
Caralada from Catalonia, Spain, 2004, 11.5%
Muscadet from France
Reisling from Australia, 12.5%
Tempranillo from Rioja, spain, 13%
Shiraz from Argentina, 2004, 14.2%
The indigenous grape of Sicily, 2002, 12.5%
A point was scored for each correct grape and country, with a half point allowed for Italy instead of Sicily. Peter Robinson was the winner with 3.5 points.

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May: Beds & Herts Federation Show 2005
Peter and Elaine entered the show again this year and Peter also judged. They were reasonable successful with Peter getting 2 first places for the first time at this show. Elaine had a few 2nd places, which resulted in her being the second most successful lady at the show.

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April: AGM and Wine Tasting by Peter Byford and Kevin Martin
18 members attended the AGM. The treasurer's report indicated that the club is still in a healthy financial position. However, it was proposed that the annual subscription was increased to 8 for single members and 14 for couples to off-set the increase in the hall hire charges. This was accepted by the members. All the current committee members were re-elected for another year.
The President - Ruth Tite - then announced the results for the Founder's Trophy, as follows - 9th David Kenney 2 pts; joint 7th Sue Kenney and Kevin Martin 4 pts; 6th Richard Tite 5 pts; 5th Maisie Pringle 8 pts; 4th Colin Lovett 10 pts; 3rd Don Maguire 21 pts; 2nd Peter Robinson 23 pts; 1st Elaine Robinson 35 pts. (Note Ex-member Ted Jordan had 18 points all gained at the Annual Show)
Peter Byford and Kevin then presented a 'blind' wine tasting. We were given a sheet with all the answers on, but they were all jumbled up. The wines came from Uruguay, Italy, Canada, Wales, France, Argentina and England. The grapes were mostly slightly unusual - Tannat, Bonardo, Primitivo, Bacchus, Pinot Blanc, Arrufiac/Petite Courbu/Gros Manseng/Petit Manseng blend, and Madaleine Angevine/Seyval Blanc/Huxelrebe blend. The wine from Wales was bought at Tesco, the other wines were bought at the Wine Society. Well done to Peter and Kevin for an unusual wine tasting.

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March: National Show at Scarborough
Peter and Elaine Robinson attended the annual show in a very cold Scarborough. There was some snow but not enough to prevent them from getting there. The earlier date this year meant that entries and attendance was lower than in previous years, but a good time was had by those who attended.
Peter and Elaine were fairly successful this year, with 12 places between them. Peter is still chasing the elusive beer award, but he gained 4 2nd places. Elaine gained 2 1st places and came home with a trophy for the best dry white wine.

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March: 'Did it fall or was it pushed?' by Ron Rudman
Ron Rudman, fellow wine-maker from St Albans Wine Circle and retired investigative fire officer, told the members of the 3 requirements for a fire triangle - fuel, heat and oxygen. He described various fires that he had investigated, and accompanied by slides of the destruction left after the fires. Most of the were caused by arson.

A club competition also took place that evening, judged by club member Wendy How. The results were as follows:
Rose: 1st Kevin, 2nd Don, 3rd Elaine, 4th Richard
Social Medium Sweet: 1st Elaine, 2nd Don, 3rd Colin, 4th Peter R

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February: Wine Tasting by Tim Ranscombe
Guests from Hoddesdon joined club members for a commercial wine tasting by Tim Ranscombe, an independent wine buyer. The first 2 whites were Chardonnay from France and South Australia; the French wine was the better of the two. The first 2 reds were Cabernet Sauvignon from South Africa and Chile; the Chilean wine was the better wine.
The last wine was presented as a blind tasting; we all stood up and Tim asked questions about it. If you got the answer wrong, you sat down. The winner was Lynette Garrett from Hodddesdon.
The wines tasted were as follows:
Chardonnay Cotes D'Or France 2003 5.49 Tesco
Chardonnay Oxford Landing S Australia 2004 4.99
Viognier Santa Julia Argentina 2004 4.99
Cabernet Sauvignon South Africa 3.49 Tesco
Cabernet Sauvignon Maipo Valley Chile 2003 4.48 Tesco
Pinotage South Africa 6.99

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January: Talk on Mead and Tasting by Mike Davey
A depleted membership (cold weather, colds) listened to a very interesting talk by Mike Davey on bee-keeping. He related how he started to keep bees, how he made some of his hives and how he replenished his stock of bees - the queen bee arrives in post in a jiffy bag!
Mike also told us how he made mead and he brought along a sweet mead for us to try. Elaine provided a dry mead.
Stop Press: Mike Davey won the Dry Mead class at the National; Elaine came 3rd in the Dry Mead class and 4th in the Sweet Mead class.

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Last updated: 20/07/16
Copyright: 2001 WWBC