My lunch break was better than yours

OK, that’s a pretty big call – and slightly obnoxious – but I’m fairly confident I’ve taken the prize.

At midday yesterday, I sat in the Drinks Trade boardroom with winemaker Ed Carr, from House of Arras, to try five of his sparkling wines.

Not just any sparkling wines. One bottle we sipped was priced at a whopping $399. OK, it was a magnum, but it’s still pretty impressive, don’t you reckon?

I was sooooooo ready for tipple because I’d discovered a jury duty summons in my letterbox a few hours earlier. It was sent on August 8, but had been buried under supermarket catalogues for the last few weeks.

I mean, who checks their letterbox these days?

Anyway, I’m supposed to front up to Downing Centre Court on September 19 … for a freaking 10 week trial. Blah.

And despite what everyone assured me, being a single mother IS NOT an excuse to get out of it. If you’re the primary carer for school-aged children and don’t have a full-time job, then you’re off the hook. But if you work full time it’s presumed you have your childcare sorted and are good to go.

As for the mortgage the single mother needs to keep paying on her own while she’s not earning her usual wage …

I’m going to try and plead financial hardship, with a chaser of school holidays juggle. Wish me luck.

Back to the wine …

House of Arras has released an unprecedented vintage collection of five wines this month.

And they’re delicious, although my favourite was the cheapest one. I loved the House of Arras Rosé 2007, which is just $91.99 a bottle. Bargain!

I also tried the EJ Carr Late Disgorged 2004 (RRP $199.99); which has spent 13 years on lees, and the Museum Release Blanc de Blancs 2001 (RRP $350) which has been aged for an incredible 15 years and is one of the most expensive products Arras has brought to market.

Plus the Grand Vintage 2007 magnum (RRP $250.00).

Some people around the table were just having little sips of their tasting glasses and tipping the rest in the spit bucket. Me? Hell no! I felt it was (non-jury) duty to savour every mouthful.

I also asked lots of annoying questions during the tasting and fielded pained looks from Ed, who probably thought I was a wine philistine, but I soldiered on with my “ooooh, this has such a very fine bead on it!” remarks.

I also got a nerdy fan girl photo taken with Ed, but I look dreadful in it. Sigh. Ashley, the publisher of Drinks Trade, is much more photogenic than me (that’s him and Ed in the main pic).

He’s probably the same age as me too, going by the fact he had Erasure playing when we arrived for the tasting.

Damn him.

And damn jury duty. I ain’t got no time for that … nor the cash reserves.

Song of the day: Cold Chisel “Cheap wine”


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