WARE WINE & BEER CIRCLE
MEETINGS IN 2007
2007
December: Annual Cook and Taste

13 members attended the Annual Cook and Taste at Kevin's house. Everyone brought something to eat and we enjoyed starters of apricots wrapped in bacon, tomato and feta pesto bites and smoked salmon and cream cheese on melba toast. The main courses were beef in red wine and chicken in claret with bacon and thyme, accompanied by rice and pasta salads, and a green salad. The desserts were an apricot meringue and an almond and pear flan. For those who still had some room, there was cheese and biscuits. A very enjoyable evening.

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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. 13 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! There were some heating problems but we still sold out around 9pm, again leaving some people disappointed. It was a cold evening but stayed dry. We sent the profits of 350 to the Herts & Essex Air Ambulance Appeal.

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November: Kit wine vs Commercial wine tasting by Peter Robinson
Earlier in the year Peter gave out 4 Beaverdale kits for members to make. This evening, the club members compared these kits with their commercial equivalents. The tasting was carried out as a blind tasting, i.e. both the kit wine and the commercial wine were in competition bottles and the members had to guess which wine was the commercial.
The wines were as follows:
Muscadet Sevre et Maine sur lie, France 12% 2006 Muscadet 4.99
Tapiwey vineyard Casablance Valley, Chile 13.5% 2007 Sauvignon Blanc 3.99
Guilio de Medici Chianti, Tuscany, Italy 12.5% 2006 Sangiovese 2.69
Californian Cabernet Sauvignon 12.5%   Cabernet Sauvignon 3.54
JP Chenet Vin de Pay d'Oc 12.5% 2006 Syrah 3.90

An interesting evening. Thanks to Peter for arranging it, and to Eddie, David, Peter R, Colin and Wendy respectively, who made the kits. Hopefully, the kits wines will be entered in club competitions next year.

A competition was also held this evening; the class was Autumn fruits. The judge was Graham Loxton-Best. The results were as follows:
1st Peter Robinson 2nd Kevin Martin 3rd Colin Lovett 4th Elaine Robinson

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November: Square Dance
The Annual Square Dance was held at Presdales School in Ware. 70 club members, their guests, and friends from Pinewood School  were taken through their dance steps by caller Ted Ivin. A ploughman's supper was provided by the club's committee members.

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October: Wine tasting of unusual grapes from Europe
13 members and 7 guests were present this month to taste 6 wines from Europe made from unusual grapes. The wines were supplied by 'Flying Corkscrew' who won the small retailer of the year in 2004, and were presented by Peter Robinson.
The wines were as follows:
Gruner Veltliner, Lois Loimer 12.5% 2006 Austria 8.50
Tokaji Furmint, Oremus Mandolas 13.5% 2003 Hungary 11.75
Bobal / Tempranillo, Rozaleme 12.5% 2004 Spain 7.75
Nero D'Avola, Villa Tonino Marsala 13% 2005 Sicily 6.50
Trincadeira / Aragonez / Castelado / Alicante Bouschet / Cabernet Sauvignon, Monte do Castenheiro, Alentrjano 14% 2004 Portugal 11.75
Muscat, Samos Nectar 14% 2000 Greece 11.55

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Inter-Club competition against Hoddesdon
The judge was for the competition was Jack Tunmore NGWBJ. The results were as follows:
Table Dry White 1st Kevin Martin 2nd Peter Robinson 3rd Brian Lowe 4th David Jackson
Table Dry Red 1st Dave Kenney 2nd Brian Lowe 3rd Ted Barnard 4th Colin Lovett
Table Sweet White 1st Elaine Robinson 2nd Keith Barltrop 3rd Elaine Robinson 4th Brian Lowe
Table Sweet Red 1st Ted Barnard 2nd Peter Robinson 3rd Colin Lovett 4th Brian Lowe

Ware were the winners by 23 points to 17.

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October: Annual Show
17 competitors (including 3 non-members) entered 114 bottles in 8 classes this year. The food classes were well supported with 12 entries. All the bottles entered in the show prior to the day arrived promptly. The 3 judges arrived early, so judging started promptly at 10am; they had a lot of bottles to judge and, for the first ever, 1 class had to be split between 2 of the judges in order to spread the load of judging reasonably evenly. Judges and stewards partook of a salad lunch. 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.

It was a shame that the evening's planned event of eating the food and drinking some of the winning wines had to be cancelled due other commitments of some members and illness of others. The food looked really great!
Click here for results and trophy winners.

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September: Chocolate, Wine and Beer tasting by Kevin Martin
12 members enjoyed an interesting evening matching wine, beer and chocolate. See Peter R's write-up for details.

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August: Annual BBQ
15 members and 1 guest attended the annual club BBQ, which was hosted this year by Peter and Elaine. Peter had placed his usual order for the sun, which duly appeared after all the rain of the week before!
Colin did his usual grand job of the cooking. The club gazebo had it's first club outing and provided welcome shade for some of the members on the grass. Others sat on the patio under a large parasol. We ate the usual chicken, Braughing sausages and various salads prepared by the members.
Thanks to Peter and Elaine for hosting the event, and to everyone for preparing the rest of the food.

Photo Gallery

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August: Annual Computerised Wine Drive
18 people, including 4 guests from Hoddesdon and 2 ex-members, entered 10 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 Ted Jordan; 2nd Colin Lovett; 3rd Peter Byford; 4th Commercial; 5th Peter Robinson 6th Keith Barltrop (bottle 2); 7th Keith Barltrop (bottle 1) 8th Dave Kenney; 9th Richard Tite; 10th Elaine Robinson. The commercial wine was Italian red table, bought at 3 bottles for 10! The club's points rules meant that Peter R and Dave gained points for the Founder's Trophy.

wine drive wine drive

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July: Annual Walk organised by Ruth and Richard Tite
Thirteen members took part in this year's annual walk took place in Ware, walking along the River Lea towards Hertford as far as the New Gauge building and returning along the course of the New River. We saw 2 families of swans with 7 cygnets each and also some ducklings; we also bravely walked through a field of cows, although they seemed totally disinterested in us.
We finished in the Tap Bar to partake of the usual refreshment, and some birthday cake, courtesy of Glen.
Thanks to Richard and Ruth for organising the walk.

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June: Commercial Tasting by Oscar Dodd of Oddbins, Hertford
26 members and guests from Hoddesdon attended a commercial wine tasting of Summer Wines from Oddbins. The wines were as follows:
Jardin de Mailais, Castel Freres   2004 Jurancon 5.99
Cuvee Reserve Caves de Turkheim, Tokay Pinot Gris 13.5% 2004 Alsace 7.49
Vau-Ligneau, Domaine Alain Geoffroy, Chablis Premier Cru 13% 2005 Burgundy 13.99
Gaspard de la Thaumassiere, Cave de Vins de Sancerre, Sancerre Rose 12.5% 2005 Loire 10.99
Clfford Bay Reserve Sauvignon Blanc, Villa Maria 14% 2005 New Zealand 13.99
D O Casablanca Valley Le Oualle Vineyard 13.5% 2004 Chile 7.99

The last wine was tasted blind. Most people guessed the grape; 3 people guessed the country and the price correctly, namely - Peter Finlay, Roger How and Peter Robinson. They were rewarded with their choice of the remaining wines. A very pleasant tasting with an interesting and enjoyable selection of wines. 

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May: Quiz Nite with Dave and Sue Kenney
12 members formed 4 teams of 3 for the annual quiz nite. Dave read out the questions this year. Ruth Tite, Helen Maguire and Eddie Hunt were the winning team. Thanks to Dave and Sue for organising the evening.

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April: AGM and English Wine Tasting
17 members attended the AGM. Apologies were received from Ruth Tite, Richard Tite, Kevin Martin and Pat Brays. The treasurer's report indicated that the club is still in a healthy financial position. It was therefore decided to keep the current subscription rate. All the current committee members were re-elected for another year. A lengthy discussion was held to discuss where the club should meet in the future. Place House appears to have various licensing problems, as well as the fact there do not appear to be any signs yet of any refurbishment. It was decided to remain at the Ware Art Centre for the foreseeable future - although a larger room would be required for the June meeting - and for the committee to investigate the costs of other halls in Ware.
Elaine Robinson then announced the results for the Founder's Trophy, as follows - 7th Don Maguire 1pt; 6th David Kenney 2 pts; 5th Kevin Martin 17 pts; 4th Peter Byford 23 pts; 3rd Colin Lovett 27 pts; 2nd Peter Robinson 31 pts; 1st Elaine Robinson 36 pts. (Note Ex-member Ted Jordan had 20 points all gained at the Annual Show)
Peter Robinson and Peter Byford then presented an English wine tasting.
The wines tasted were as follows:
Halfpenny Green, Midlands 12% 2005 Huxelrebe 6.99
Gwinllan Padrig Mon, LLanbadrig, Anglesey 10% 2005 Madeline Angevine 8
New Hall, Essex 10.5% 2004 Late harvest Bacchus 4
Carmello, Broxbourne   2005 Rondo  

Well done to Peter B, Peter R for the wine tasting.

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March: National Show at Scarborough
Peter and Elaine Robinson attended the annual show at Scarborough. As usual, as very good, if hectic, weekend. Not as cold as previous years. We even had an ice-cream while walking along the Scarborough sea-front on Sunday afternoon!
Peter and Elaine were quite successful this year, with 19 places between them, and their success made the club 5th highest in the points league table. Peter has finally obtained a 1st place in beer (although no trophy) and several places. He has now decided to have a go at the beer judges exam. Elaine gained 2 1st places (also no trophies) and several other places.

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March: Talk on the Knights Templar in Hertford by Raymond Brown
Raymond Brown, from The Mercury, gave a talk on The Knights Templar and their connections with Hertford.
The Knights Templar protected pilgrims travelling to the Holy Land in the 13th century, and supposedly discovered the Holy Grail. They were the power behind many thrones in Europe, became very wealthy and had their own private army. In 1307, King Philip of France declared that they were heretics and had thousands of them tortured and massacred, seizing their wealth in the process. Many fled from France to England. King Edward II had 4 of them arrested and imprisoned in Hertford Castle, as he believed that they were hiding a lost treasure. The treasure was never found and the fate of the men remains unknown.
The Knights Templar are believed to have founded some of the towns in Hertfordshire, namely Baldock, Bungtinford and Standon. There are apparently many tunnels under Hertford believed to have Knights Templar connections. However, most of them are now bricked up and it is not possible to visit them. There is also a small group of Knights Templar in Hertford and they are supposed to have Masonic connections.

A club competition also took place that evening, judged by Mike Davey. The results were as follows:
Fresh Grape, any colour: 1st Elaine, 2nd Peter R, 3rd Kevin, 4th Don
Tropical Fruit juice: 1st Elaine, 2nd Colin, 3rd Peter R

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February: Wine Tasting - Tesco vs Sainsbury - by Graham Loxton-Best
Guests from Hoddesdon joined club members for a commercial wine tasting, comparing wines of the same grape variety from Tesco and Sainsbury. The tasting was conducted as a blind tasting and we were asked to give each wine marks out of 10.
The wines tasted were as follows:
2005 Chablis, 2005 Pinot Grigio, non-vintage Chardonnay from Australia, non-vintage and 2005 Beaujolais, and non-vintage and 2004 Claret. Kevin Martin then totalled up the marks and Sainsbury had the most marks. They also had the best wine of the evening - 2004 Claret.

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January: Talk on 40 years in the wine trade by Geoff Holmes
17 members enjoyed an amusing talk on 40 years in the wine trade. Geoff told us that he was originally employed by the London Rubber Company, who had a subsidiary company selling wine called Wineways. He told how things had changed during those 40 years - from counter service to self-service, standard pricing to cut-prices and offers, decimalisation, drink-driving laws and breathalysing. He reminded us of names of drinks that are, mostly, no longer around - Babycham, Cherry B, Dandelion & Burdock, Green Goddess, Mosaic sherry, Emva Cream, Domecq, Dry Sack, Bristol Milk, Watneys Red Label, Johnnie Walker Red, Haig, Dimple, VAT 69, and others; most of which the majority could remember. Geoff brought along 4 wines that we probably all used to drink in our younger days - Blue Nun, Black Tower, Mateus rose, and Piat D'Or.
A very interesting talk; not so sure about the tasting; perhaps our palates are more refined now.

Elaine reminded the members of the competition in March - Tropical Fruit Juice (see recipe), and fresh grape, any colour; and also of the National show which takes place in Scarborough at the beginning of March. See the NAWB web site for full details. She said that if any member wished to enter either the open classes or to submit wines to represent the wine club in the circle classes, then she and Peter would be happy to take the bottles with them. (Classes available).

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