As Spring rolls around, we’ve got a drink for everyone to help celebrate the warmer weather, whether you prefer champagne, beer or wine.

Spring bubbles
The new mover and shaker on the Champagne scene for 2017 is Veuve Clicquot Extra Brut Extra Old.
Most non-vintage Champagnes you drink will be labelled “Brut”, and this basically means "dry" as opposed to “sec” or “doux”, which signify sweeter wines. So extra Brut just means “extra dry”. This is achieved by lowering the dosage of sugar added after fermentation and using a rich base wine to balance the drier style.
Dominique Demarville, chief winemaker at Veuve Clicquot, has created a complex blend of vintages from as early as 1988 through to 2010 — a break with tradition as many non-vintage champagnes are made with wines no older than five years. This blend of older and younger wines has then been allowed to mature for a further three years in the bottle, thus creating “extra old”.
The result is beautifully textured, creamy Champagne with the “extra Brut” making a seriously refreshing style that is the perfect aperitif. We know what we’ll be serving this Spring!

Sweet or Sour
The blending of aged and newer liquor is not specific to Champagne, and there’s certainly an art when it comes to combining different brews.
We recommend Rodenbach Sour Ale, a Flanders Red-style beer which is made by blending aged beer, which has been matured in French oak barrels for two years, with a young lager that serves to preserve it and balance the sour flavour of the aged beer.
The Classic Rodenbach brew is a smooth balance between sourness and a biscuit malt character. Rodenbach has a pronounced fruit flavour of cherries and green apple, a complex taste and aroma, and a rich red-brown colour in the glass. These attributes lend Rodenbach the same sweet-sour flavour and complex fruitiness that you will find in a good bottle of wine.

Bordeaux vs Margaret River
The first plantings of Margaret River as a wine region in 1967 were based on two reports by renowned agronomist Dr John Gladstones from the University of Western Australia. In 1965 and 1966 respectively, he confirmed Margaret River as an ideal region for viticulture, and compared the climate to Bordeaux’s Pomerol region, source of the world’s most sought after Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.
Style wise, wines from Bordeaux are characterised by their firmer (but fine) tannins, while Margaret River cabernets tend to have slightly riper
fruit characters.
New to Vintage Cellars, Mouton Cadet Vintage Edition 2014 is a classic Bordeaux blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. A second label for famed Premier Cru producer Mouton Rothschild, it was born in 1930 as the result of Baron Philippe de Rothschild wanting to bring the richness of Bordeaux to a wider audience. With lots of black fruits on the nose, the firm tannins are evident in the mouth and provide great length balanced with black and red fruits on the palate. Perfect with anything from the slow cooker while you wait for the warmer weather to kick in.
On the other hand, Howard Park Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon is an absolute gem that delivers a concentrated cassis bouquet followed by soft, subtle tannins and red fruits. This is an absolute must with your spring lamb cutlets.