The Wine Appreciation Group normally meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 12:30 (following the General Monthly meeting of the U3A) in St Teresa's Social Club . The meetings take the form of a tutored tasting of about six wines, usually following a theme which may be a grape variety, wine region, old world vs new etc., followed by a 'guess the price' competition. They usually last about 2-3 hours and cost £6 per visit. Members are encouraged to bring their lunch.
Group Leader: Mary Shepherd
For our February meeting, 76 members of the Wine Appreciation Group held their Spanish wine tasting in an authentic Catalan restaurant. Established only ten months ago, the LUNYA, situated in Liverpool One, has already won ‘best restaurant’ award and received many accolades. It was a drizzly, cold day but inside was the warmth and ambience of Spain itself. In true Spanish style we enjoyed the many ‘tapas’ dishes with accompanying wines chosen by our Sommelier, Ian, of Cultural Wines who had arranged the visit. It was an afternoon of discovery- learning more about the wine, grape variety, regions and being guided through the tasting with complimentary dishes. We were introduced to our ‘tapas’ by Peter the convivial owner of LUNYA who gave us an insight into the ingredients and making of each. We were served the famous ‘Calamari a la romana’ -‘Morcila de burgos’ - Chorizo in white wine, Potatas Bravas — Platters of Spanish Meats and Cheeses with Catalan Tomato Bread and many more dishes followed by a medley of desserts. Each course was accompanied by wines such as Paternina Banda Dorado Blanco (white rioja) and Accolado Tinto (red rioja), a Catalino Viura/Chardonnay and Nuviano Tempranillo/Cab. Sauvignon. It was a delightful learning curve - in situ; one we would recommend to other U3A wine ‘buffs’.
We had arrived at 1.00pm and were only just ready to leave at 5.00pm such was our enjoyment. Before leaving members browsed around the well-stocked deli buying the cheeses just sampled. It was a case of ‘MUCHAS GRATIAS’ to everyone involved in providing such an informative and enjoyable day and a fervent ‘HASTA la VISTA’. If you are visiting Liverpool, visit the LUNYA, you won’t be disappointed. Mary Shepherd
Picture Gallery - picasaweb.google.com/uphollandu3a/WineAppreciationGroup
On Tuesday 11 December 2012 St Teresa’s Hall was transformed into an elegant red, white and gold wonderland for our Christmas “Razzle, Dazzle” Luncheon. On arrival 100 members were greeted by Garry the Toast Master resplendent in his red jacket, white waistcoat and gloves, adorned with his medal of office who invited everyone to enjoy the four-course Lunch. He went on to be our Master of Ceremonies for the afternoon. Food was prepared with friendly efficienc y by Tony Bonner and his staff. We were offered Melon, Wild Boar Pate’, Turkey, Chicken, Beef Bourginon, Christmas Cheesecake followed by a well-laden cheeseboard and crackers. Mince pies, chocolates and coffee completed the ample menu. Ian Clarke our wine ‘ officianado ‘ had compiled a Christmas cocktail
on arrival and his usual fine red and white wines during lunch. The bar was available for those wanting beers or short drinks.
We were entertained during the afternoon with some panache by members of the Anna Shimmin School of Dancing who performed an up-tempo number to much applause. Their second Christmas-themed number was certainly well-received by the male members who appreciated the’high-kicks’. The Celebrity Quiz got the brains ticking over, the winner receiving one of Ian’s wines. To finish the afternoon we had a complimentary raffle with lots of chances of prizes.
The weather had held, there were lots of smiling faces, the food had been good and plentiful, the wines were excellent, the company was great, the atmosphere warm and inviting – throw in a few good table-jokes and you have a recipe for ‘success’. The assistance of members like John Hart, Dilys Higgins, Margaret Knowles, Nancy Mousdell and Tony and Rita Reyes helped in no small way – my thanks to them. A very special thanks to my ‘partner in crime’ Allan Hampson for his wonderful display and lighting bringing the ‘razzle, dazzle’ theme to life. To these and all those who came along and enjoyed the event I raise my glass.