Category Archives: Grape&Grain

Franciacorta – fizz with food

PETER RANSCOMBE IF YOU stop to think for a moment, sparkling wine is an amazing product. No other drink has such a strong connection with celebrations, whether it’s a bottle of Champagne to toast a newly-married couple or getting the keys to your first house, or just a glass of Cava or Prosecco to congratulateContinue Reading

Another look at lager

PETER RANSCOMBE IT’S been a couple of years since The Grape & The Grain last took a look at Scottish lager and so it’s high time we made like Fagan and reviewed the situation. Since we last attacked the crown caps with a bottle opener, the craft brewing sector has continued to flourish, with the CampaignContinue Reading

Brewing up a storm at Innis & Gunn’s beer kitchen in Glasgow

PETER RANSCOMBE THE first time I interviewed Dougal Sharp was back in 2008 in a pretty non-descript rented office in the middle of Edinburgh. It was an exciting time for the master brewer – he had just led the management buyout of Innis & Gunn, the brand he cofounded in 2003 to make the beerContinue Reading

It’s all about the base

PETER RANSCOMBE WHEN it comes to Champagne, it’s all about the base – the base wines that go into creating France’s signature fizz. Each Champagne house or producer will normally create a non-vintage blend, mixing wines from different vintages or years to create a house style that can be reproduced bottle after bottle. In exceptionalContinue Reading

Bringing a taste of Napa Valley to the UK

VISITING California with the Wine Institute – to learn more about its sense of place, environmental programmes and diversity of styles – demonstrated the sheer variety of quality wines produced in the Golden State. Yet much of the tastiest wine never leaves the United States – or even, in some cases, California. That’s why itContinue Reading