4 Things We Learned About Wine in Lockdown
Lockdown offered plenty of opportunity for new things when it comes to wine, whether that’s new bottles, or new ways to enjoy them. At Team Vintner, we’ve been doing this wine thing for a while now, but that doesn’t mean we’re not still learning. So, what did our team learn in lockdown that might be handy for you to know too?
Lucy – Go Exploring When You Can
Wine and lockdown, what did I learn…. Well, firstly, I learnt that wine tastes GREAT on a Monday (in lockdown it seemed more legit, cuff me). On a more ‘learning for the long term’ note, eating and drinking were one of the very few thrills of lockdown. I was locked down with my family, boyfriend and beloved Labrador, Murphy, so not all bad! Every week we would do food challenges for dinners with themes, it was great fun, and we added an element of competition by scoring each dish (I won on more than one occasion!). At weekends we would go full out with three course meals, and what meal would be complete without a good helping of wine?! Luckily, my dad is a big Vintner fan, so all the wine was delicious and in plentiful supply! I’d say our wine of lockdown was our Grüner Veltliner from Austria, it just worked for every occasion and was loved by all.
Why not explore our entire white wine collection at Vintner to find the perfect white wine for your occasion!
Matt – Don’t Get a Wine Fridge
Like many people, the long days at home made me want to make some improvements around the house, but there isn’t much you can do to a one bed flat, so I went about this in a home gadget way. I can now turn on all the lights by asking Alexa (something I’m sure in contributing to weight gain on my part) and I went as far into useless gadgets as to think I needed a wine fridge. I was opening more bottles, which meant I needed more at the ready, so it seemed like a good fit.
While it elevates me to a level of middle class that my northern accent quickly betrays, I don’t think it’s particularly useful. You’ll notice in our guide to cooling your wine, that the wine fridge isn’t a required feature, and in keeping all things wine easy, the wine fridge is a bit of a fail. It takes at least a day to cool all the wine, and if you open the door, you lose that temp quickly, so what I really learned is that you should keep your wine somewhere cool and dark and learn to pivot between fridge and freezer when you’re getting that chill right.
Hamish – Glassware Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be
I was always a bit of a glass snob. I liked champagne in flutes, pinot noir in Burgundy glasses and over my career have amassed an impressive (See: stupid) collection of fine glassware. During the pandemic, we partnered up with GoVino, who make plastic, stemless drinkware that is chic yet durable. Originally, I saw their purpose being mainly for picnics in the park but over time I realised I was missing a trick. Having lovely glassware at home is a treat and there is something about a beautiful glass that adds to the experience of sipping, but glassware is fragile and can be a pain to clean. I have broken about 7 glasses over the past year – and annoyingly it’s mainly been when I’ve been cleaning up.
Tired of handwashing and drying my glasses, I’ve more recently switched over to GoVinos. They’re easy to handle, look indistinguishable from glassware, are light weight and they fit very neatly in the top shelf of the dishwasher. They’re perfect for a night in and I’m less concerned about spilling wine on the couch. And Pro Tip: I believe they’re the perfect measurement to accommodate a double G&T.
Julia – It’s All About the Experience
All of the lockdowns have allowed a lot more family time, which has been very special. Lockdown 3 really amplified this for us.
We were fortunate that our youngest learnt to ride a pedal bike just before Christmas. A serious achievement! This meant that we could now go for long walks (adults walking, while the boys rode their bikes). Win-win, and so began our new weekend routine. An 8km walk in the park, followed by lunch (at home, obvs), and a long lazy afternoon. We had earnt it from the morning’s activity. Late afternoon the board games came out, the fire went on, and what better accompaniment to this… wine of course. Particularly a warming rouge. And to match with a delicious roast. Weekends became about choosing what delicious food to make and what beverage to have alongside.
So, what are the learnings? I don’t believe we would have had this precious quality family time had we not been in lockdown, and it also showed us how much we have on our doorstep (somehow, we hadn’t realised that Richmond Park was only a 5 minute drive away!) And the final learning? Having a delicious food and wine to look forward to, definitely made a nice treat to the end of the day.