Cocktail Recipes, Spirits, and Local Bars

Wine-Inspired Playlist: Tunes for Your Next Tasting

Wine-Inspired Playlist: Tunes for Your Next Tasting

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Plenty of tunes to go with your wine

Wine has featured in many popular songs over the years, from the Eagles’ "please bring me my wine" and "pink champagne on ice" in "Hotel California" to The Beatles’ "I sat on the rug, biding my time, drinking her wine" in "Norwegian Wood." But it’s harder to find a whole song centered on wine. Here are six we liked, perfect for playing while sipping on great wine with great company.

"Bottle of Red Wine" by Eric Clapton. From the guitar god’s 1970 debut solo album comes this poetic but ambiguous plea for a woman to "get your man a bottle of red wine."

"Coffee and Wine" by Chadwick Stokes. The reggae-funk rocker put out this song on his debut album. It tells a great story that goes along with the moving beat.

"Chardonnay" by Frogg Marlowe. This bluesy track with an indie rock feel has got emotion, great singing, and of course an ode to (or maybe regret of) chardonnay.

"Chardonnay" by Brandhi Irvon. A song that plays like the varietal it describes: Irvon’s full, buttery voice is complemented by a muted trumpet adding complexity in this R&B song lamenting a lost relationship.

"Red, Red Wine" by UB40. A blend of reggae and pop, you may have slow-danced to this song at a wedding. The refrain "red, red wine" is an ode any wine lover can groove to.

"Red Wine Til Daylight" by Keri Noble. Ever stayed up late drinking wine? Blare this pop-country tune the next time you do.

Click here for more from the Daily Sip.

The Best New Tunes for Your Fall Workouts

What do we love more than the pumpkin patch, apple cider, a cool and crisp autumn morning run, and playing in the leaves?

The following new workout tunes.

In fact, you might say we have fallen in love with them.

Behold, our favorite new workout tracks for all of your fall workouts — and be sure to read to the bottom to follow along and listen to our playlist on Spotify!

Best Smooth Wines

As featured on Best Smooth Jazz

Spring in our step

Some fine jazzy tunes and 2 fine wines to enjoy alongside. The Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2012 was a joy to behold. Rich and rustic at 13.5%, nice and dry with aromas of toasted wood and cocoa coupled with subtle spiciness and a silky vanilla finish. Would be great with pasta, ratatouille, roast meats and hard cheeses. Aldi at £12.99.

Continuing as having such a great time - Rod played some super music from some of the greats plus new artists – so had to open a nice Argentinian Malbec from Buenos Vide. From the Uco Valley this wine was vibrant and intense, softer than the first wine, with youthful purple tints and aromas of fresh fruits. Only £4.49 . . . . . 14% and a wonderful finish to a pretty smooth show.


Cocodrilo 2019 – a black fruit, soft plum Malbec from Mendoza Argentina, superb from Aldi at £9.99. 14% and rich on the palate, it had herbaceous hints, a deep floral fragrance augmented by choc/coffee notes, all round, lovely experience. Perfect with a good roast chicken or Boeuf bourguignon or beef wellington, come to that! Second up – recommended by Geoff and Kate - Beachfront, a Californian Shiraz as unable to find the Zinfandel in Aldi, another 2019, 13.5% - much lighter and some degrees less dry. Be great with cheese, a light brie, camembert or plain old mature cheddar.

“Spring is nature's way of saying, 'Let's Party!'”

We enjoyed another good Grapevine from Aldi – this time their Pinot Noir a wonderful grape at the best of times. Chilean from Valle Central, it was 13% pure cherry and blackcurrant, rather dry and easy on the palate. Perhaps a little too spiky, so followed it up with a slightly softer Tempranillo, again from the marvellous Grapevine range. Both would be good paired with hard cheeses, some good olives and maybe a nice oregano-based pasta penne.


A pretty spiky red, Barefoot Merlot from California. Really nice with a touch of coffee/chocolate also plum and violet, great taste, nice nose and a fragrant finish. Currently £4.99 in Aldi and most supermarkets. 13.5%, well recommended.

Happy New Year!

The beautiful Bollinger - gifted by Brian and Julie – was opened with a small pop (always best slowly and gently) and then quickly poured – full of bubbles. Super dry, crisp, fresh and citrus - a real treat and a great way to welcome 2021 and our first BSJ Show of the year. Cheers!

The resident radio presenter played some wonderful tracks so another wine on the offing. As Paulette pointed out, ‘Red after White, you’ll be alright’ – ‘White after Red will give you a head’ (Olde English expression, when following the etiquette of wine drinking.) Therefore, a red was indeed forthcoming – a charismatic Californian Shiraz from Beachfront. Deep bodied, subtle berries coupled with a fine black tannin, great nose and full of velvet goodness. . . . . thankyou socially distanced Aldi - only £3.99.

We’re ‘Jammin’

Leasingham is a name that has become synonymous with premium Australian wine since 1893. This Jam Shed Shiraz pays homage to the original Leasingham winery, located in the historic town of Clare. The locals fondly refer to it as ‘The Jam Shed’ as it had previously been the Old Clare Jam Factory. For well over a century The Jam Shed played a crucial role in the development of the region through both jam and wine production and this quirky, delicious Jam Shed Shiraz has been inspired by the great preserves of old. Medium sweet and at 13%, pretty poky, we loved the vanilla, strawberry hints coupled with spices and a subtle fragrance, it was indeed literally jam packed with rich, opulent berry flavours. Served chilled, a great accompaniment to a bar b q, some nice Italian pasta, or even perhaps your Thanksgiving Turkey (or leg of lamb)


From Rosemary and Steve’s Magic Cellar came this lovely little 2017 Nero Oro Riserva – Sicilia. Nero Oro being Sicily’s Black Gold. The vines for this Riserva grow on red, loamy soils known locally as ‘Ferretti’. It’s aged in Slovenian barrels for 12-18 months and is abound with black berry fruits, sweet ripe tannin with a rich finish. A pleasant fragrant spice on the tongue with a hint of chocolate and dare I say, tobacco.

The saying goes ‘a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’ and this gorgeous 2018 Shiraz from the Bird in Hand Winery in the Adelaide Hills was a deep, dark delight. Aged in tight grain French oak, this ‘Two in the Bush’ offered rich aromas of vanilla and blackberry. Illustrating perfectly the complexity of cooler climate red wine making. What foods would we pair with these two wines? Probably not pumpkin pie although a savoury pumpkin soup would be a good option, also a nice pancetta carbonara. Lunch and Supper sorted for All Saints Day then.

‘Heads’ or ‘Tails’

10th Anniversary Show - 10th October 2020

Faced with the wonderful dilemma of which Champagne to drink (first) we decided to toss a coin! Brian, Julie and Emma had gifted us a perfect Pommery which I was most interested to try, never had that before - and Steve and Rosie had sent us some Heidsieck Gold Top Monopole – 2010 . . . choices choices. ‘Heads’ won so I popped the Heidsieck.

Charles Heidsieck Champagne was established in 1851 by the nephew of Piper-Heidsieck's owner. After growing up in the midst of grapes, in a family ruled by Reims traditions, Charles became a traveller and free-spirited, smooth-talking gentleman entrepreneur, focused on his champagne business. With his distinguished charm and knack for business, he captivated America becoming a prominent figure of fashionable society in just a few months. Charles focused on making a name for himself and for his champagne - Champagne Charlie This superb chilled Champers was discernibly citrus, stone and dry apricot, a hint of floral and a crisp scent of the ocean. Thoroughly indulgent and inspiring, with tinkly, tiny bubbles to the very last drop.

As it was our 10th Anniversary and we were therefore celebrating, we opened up the Pommery next and what a surprise, a different taste all together – still fresh, dry and crisp but with more hints of lemon and petals, slightly less bubblesome perhaps, but right on the mark.

Thanks to our BSJ supporters, we had a great Anniversary show with many of our super listeners (many imbibing at the same time – silly not to) and raised lots of glasses, chinking cheers to each other across the World, from Texas to NY, to New Orleans, Atlanta, Bedfordshire UK, Wilts UK, Cheshire, UK, Germany, Dubai, Brazil, California, - so many places. Thanks guys.

The Soul of Portugal

A red blend from Vicente Faria – The Soul of Portugal – was enjoyed on this show. ‘Animus’ 2018 via Aldi at £4.99


1. hostility or ill feeling.
"the author's animus towards her”.

2. motivation to do something.
"the reformist animus came from within the Party"

A strange name for a wine that was so good, no hostility whatsoever in fact. Rod’s first words after his first sip was ’jammy’ and I agreed. Ripe and rich with a plummy red cherry center and vanilla finish, light and airy but still rigorous and would be perfect paired with pizza, pasta and perhaps shrimp creole! The label is great too.

Many comments in the chatroom about the flowers – Le Petit Coral Burst - apricot colored roses (no fragrance sadly) a sprig of gypsophyllia, tangerine carnations and the omnipotent dried purple violet statice.

Champagne Charlies

How lucky we were to be gifted a beautiful Bottle of Bollinger from Brian and Julie, celebrating their 30th Wedding anniversary. Never had Bollinger before but what a treat, gorgeously dry and crisp with undertones of apricot and vanilla, cool and fresh on the tongue with after-fizzles of lemon and toast. Thoroughly enjoyed it, previously my favourite has been the super Veuve de Clique and Dom Perignon (any year will do) but Bolly is now my firm favourite.

On the recommendation of The Rev we followed this treat up – between smooth tracks of best tunes – with a smooth, reliable Apothic Original Red, the super blend Winemakers, hitting 13.5%. This wine, inspired by ‘The Apotheca’, a mysterious place where ancient wines were blended, includes rich layers of dark fruit, complemented by hints of vanilla and mocha – and a tad of toffee too.

Segredo, Segredo, Segredo

Portuguese wine is my very favourite thing currently and this rather tasty Segredo Lisboa, Limited edition from Touriga Nacional was thoroughly enjoyed on this week’s show. Ripe and dark red with a super fragrant nose, a most delicious blend of the grapes Syrah and Tinta Roriz. 2019, 13.5% and priced at £4.99 in Aldi, a great day to day wine of choice. Would partner well with ripe cheeses, a rich bourguignonne or a simple pasta dish. The label caught the imagination of many in the chat room with The Rev recognising the Rooster as a fighting cock with its claw in a key . . . . . interesting.

Birthday Cat

My birthday this week and received so many great messages in the chatroom, thankyou. Celebrated with a rather purrfect Chat-eu-Oeuf, pronounced ‘Sha noof’ – which translates to ‘Cat in an Egg’. Frenchly delicious with a fragrant nose, ruby red velvet tannins and a terrific lees at the base (so it must be good?) At 14 % it was every inch the best wine to enjoy with Jambalaya, Cajun sausages or even Angie’s homemade burgers, heavy on the chilli flakes. This luscious red is made up of old vine Grenache and Syrah (AKA Shiraz) making it a truly mouth filling wine with rich, juicy and berry fruit flavours plus a subtle twist of spice and toffee at the end. Available from Amazon, Waitrose, other wine merchants, however not currently Aldi. Lapped it up, cat like. Purrrr.

Unexpected Treats for Father’s Day

Rosie and Steve unexpectedly and amazingly, dropped off a super arrangement of roses from their garden and some exciting bottles of red from Majestic Wine! What a treat. First up, the Porta 6 Reserva 2017, slowly aged in oak barrels, smooth and lavish – exceptionally good. With a blend of 2 excellent grapes – Touriga Nacional and Tinta Roriz, it inspired a long finish on the palate, a soft mellow nose and ‘legs to die for.’ If you caught us ‘live’ on Twitch you can see the delight on our faces as we sample this delicious, wet bramble, juicy exotic fruitiness with a hint of slow chocolate. Imagine a stroll through the narrow streets of Lisbon – brought back memories.

Then of course we felt obliged to try the French Jean Bon Merlot Pays D’OC 2018 – just as good. Nothing plain about this Merlot. At 13.5% it was deep and warm, fruity, fresh and clean - not a sour grape amongst us. In the chatroom during the show we discussed grits, shrimp, salmon dishes and what we planned for Father’s Day Dinner – Al’s usual suggestions were incredible, The Rev was cooking a special dinner and as always Paulette’s sweet and saucy desserts got our taste buds abounding – inspiring times. (Oh, yes and some great smooth Jazzy tunes – don’t forget those.)

Birthday Carignan

Elle’s Birthday, so a little Estevez Carignan seemed like a good idea. Elle kindly sponsored the show and we had a great time in the chat room as ever discussing wines, food recipes and the state of the World in general etc, while wishing her a Happy Birthday from us all (not forgetting playing some great smooth jazz tunes too of course).

This Chilean Valle Central from Aldi at £4.99 is reminiscent of mulberry and blackberry, fruity and dry while still maintaining a soft mellow finish. 13.5%, so medium to deep – offering up a tasty splash of sunshine on the palate. Highly recommended. We enjoyed a homemade basil potato salad and pizza wedges with it but would be also so good with Felicity’s Charcuterie, Al’s seasoned lamb chops or indeed Paulette’s raisin cookies and cinnamon apple tart as dessert.

Classy Claret

Thought we’d bring a little class to our show so enjoyed a really good Claret from Bordeaux – Aldi’s at £4.99. 13.5% so well deep, yet mellow and so smooooth despite being really dry. Hints of hedgerow, blackberry and sharp dark fruit. Excellent, pair with cheeses, ripe stilton, a nice camembert or a good old-fashioned hard cheddar. Failing that perhaps Cumberland and Lincolnshire sausages with red wine gravy. Tantalising. Here it is nestling in a BSJ Quilt - curtesy of Quilter Sally, a regular listener – snuggled and secure.

Chapter & Verse

Made by the team at Hardys, one of Australia’s most renowned wine producers, drawing on more than 165 years of winemaking experience. Chapter & Verse is an exclusive range of carefully selected wines which pay tribute to Thomas Hardy who after contributing to the early Australian wine industry many say wrote the book on winemaking, literally every Chapter & Verse. This fine Shiraz with fresh, fruity hints of deep cherry, plum and blackberry was mellow and delicious at just £4.99 from Aldi. 1.5%, 2019. Super.

Wine of Australia

A tasty blend is always a good idea and this Australian Banrock Station Reserve 2019 didn’t disappoint. Full of deep dark fruits, blackberry, blackcurrant, plum and sweet cherry, this soft combination of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz had just the right hint of spice yet was also silky and delicate. At 14% it offered an understated temperate elegance that would be great paired with lamb or beef dishes, a ratatouille or a perhaps a rich bowl of pasta – heavy on the tomatoes. £4.99 from Aldi, so as ever a good price for a great wine. The Riverland vineyards and defended wetlands reflect their passion for good wine and remain dedicated in protecting the environment. Good earth, fine wine, that’s what you get.

Easter Parade

Always a sucker for a pretty label – this Organic ‘O’ Reserva 2018 Malbec from Valle Central Chile looked promising – however, was sadly lacking in depth, a tad sour and watery with no nose at all. No hints of raspberry or black fruits, all in all fairly boring. ‘O’ represents circles, traditional expressions of inner peace, unity, enlightenment and the totality of the universe. The circle is also the shape of the moon which is a key element in how the grapevines are grown. ‘O’ is also for ‘Organic’ – the best way forward for agriculture (viticulture) to obtain healthier and better-balanced vineyards, thus resulting in high quality wines. Perhaps let it rest for another couple of years before drinking.

So, moved swiftly onto Malbec N0. 2. Grapevine’s offering from Aldi at £3.79. I wondered in last show’s scribing whether Grapevine would launch a Malbec or a Pinot Noir within their range. They must have read it because, there upon my supermarket shelf (after considerable time queueing 2 metres apart in the carpark prior to entering the store) was this Malbec from Argentina. Mellow and dry but full bodied and juicy, hints of bramble and also a touch earthy. Liked it very much. Of the 3 though, (Grapevine’s Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Malbec) the Shiraz remains my favourite. Hoppy Easter, stay safe.

Rainbow Tulips and a new Grapevine

I was delighted to see that the Grapevine range from Aldi - not only offered up a Shiraz earlier this year after only proving a Merlot up ‘til then - but now, wonder of wonders – a Cabernet Sauvignon Grapevine. It was, as expected a pretty lovely taste. Warm and juicy, fruitful and concise – only 12.5% but didn’t lack depth. The Shiraz (and Merlot of course) enjoyed on earlier shows were also fulfilling and wholesome, this Grapevine never disappoints. What next? A Grapevine Malbec? A Grapevine Pinot Noir? Or perhaps a blend of 3 grapes .

Just to remind, Grapevine range is Spanish, medium bodied, well priced, but a good experience every single time at £3.59. Super drinking. On your own (if you have to) With close family – in the same household. Or, when things settle down, sharing with friends – if you have any wine left by then.

Springtime Wine preserved by nature

The first BSJ Show of Springtime introduced this lovely juicy Shiraz – Earth’s Essence – no sulphur or preservatives added, so purely natural. I could actually taste the difference. It was more ‘earthy’ and basic, yet light and fresh. It displayed vibrant fresh red fruit with aromas of cranberries, forest floor (just the inference you understand – I don’t think anyone has ever tasted the forest floor . . .) and black pepper. Nuances of cedary oak and vanilla accompanied a juicy tannin structure that delivered a well-rounded finish.

Earth’s Essence is naturally preserved using a patented South African wine making process, meaning that no sulphur or synthetic preservatives were added, keeping it as natural as possible (presumably meaning it won’t last too long so drink up, don’t worry – we did) £4.99 in Aldi. 14%.

Keeping up the fluids and staying healthy

Even more so, we need to be increasing our fluid intake. Never being one who needs reminding – this week’s show featured a rather cheeky Old School Syrah from False Bay, W O Coastal region of South Africa. Not a jam soup with toasted oak chips added for mocha flavour, it was fermented ‘old school’ style with wild yeast and raised in large wooden casks (foudre). Elegant and deep, fragrant and juicy. 14.5%.

In fact, we imbibed in 2 bottles in our sensible quest to remain hydrated. The second bottle I selected from Co Op, primarily due to it’s pretty label – they say never judge a wine by it’s label but this ‘Chalkduster’ turned out to be really nicely fruitfully beautiful. A Californian Zinfandel, it offered aromas of jammy fruits and spice and was packed with a ripe fruit medley of dark cherries and blackberries. The vibrant diffusion of colours on the label depict the styled aroma of the wine (apparently). Magenta hues represent dark cherry, blackberry and jammy notes, the blues depict the burst of fruit and freshness and the splash of yellow showing the subtle hints of pepper and spice. . . . .

Both wines to be enjoyed with something deep and spicy – good job I’d earlier made a rather large pan of Mexican Bean soup – perfect.

European Wines

The clue is in the name – Bolgare, so from Bulgaria. A nice taste of juicy fruits, berries and spice, hint of vanilla. A rich fragrance and a warm, mellow finish. At 14% it was a deep and rich experience, loved it. From the Thracian Lowlands in Bulgaria, this blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Rubin is worth recommending. I don’t think we see enough Bulgarian wines in the supermarkets, so if you catch one it’s well worth trying.

After encouragement (we don’t need too much) to open another bottle of wine, I uncorked a great Spanish offering simply labelled 100% Syrah Roble. At 13.5 % it was gentler and lighter than the previous wine. Cherry vibes and good hit of spring flowers, I served it pretty cool but that didn’t hinder the enjoyment one bit and in fact, I feel it enhanced the flavours. A wine I would drink again. Would be wonderful alongside seared tuna steak, other seafoods or a light Mediterranean supper of various tapas.

Fair Trade & South Africa

Fair for Life Social and Fair Trade Certification guarantees that human rights are assured at all stages of production and that farmers and processing workers enjoy good and fair working conditions and receive a fair share. This gorgeous organic shiraz, produced by Stellar in South Africa was thoroughly enjoyed on the show, lightly spicy and round, it’d be great with stews and risottos and earthy pasta dishes. Vegan friendly to boot. Had a super rich scent which teased the flavours to come, fruit and bramble, juicy berries.

Also, from ‘The Elle Wine Cellar’ that is our local wine merchants (Thanks Elle for the vouchers) - Primordial Soup, a rich and bloody bouillabaisse of the Western Cape’s classical cultivars, packed with juicy life, red in tooth and claw. It’s The Natural Selection. This one had ‘no nose’ to speak of, no fragrance but despite this, oh so tasty, light and fresh, scintillating and sumptuous. I personally preferred this wine to the Stellar.

What about Organic?

We tried out this really super blend of 70% Bobal, 20% Tempranillo and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon ‘0rganico Toro Loco (Crazy Bull) Superior’ 2018 from Aldi. £4.99, fresh and juicy, could really taste the raspberries from the Utiel-Requena region of Spain. 12.5% so pretty light and fresh. Would be good with roasted vegetables and other Mediterranean style foods, tapas, olives etc. A word or 2 about organic wine - Organic wine is wine made from grapes grown in accordance with principles of organic farming, which typically excludes the use of artificial chemical fertilizers, pesticides, fungicides and herbicides. In simplest terms, organic winemakers are focused on a purer process — less exposure to chemicals, and wines labelled as Organic can have no added sulphites. Less of a headache if one drinks a little too much perhaps?

A very exciting discovery. Aldi’s Grapevine Merlot is - at only £3.59 a bottle - one of the best budget, yet gorgeous tasting wines around at the moment so imagine how pleased I was to discover a Grapevine Shiraz in the wine aisle! Love Shiraz anyway so unsurprised to experience another knockout wine - well done Aldi and Thank you.

Couple of Classics from Co-op

Very nice indeed - Old Vine Garnacha, Campo de Borja. First sip was rather nice and improved from there. At 14% and the super Grenache grape – this smoky, deep berry red was a juicy delight from the start. The 40-year-old vines nestle in the shadow of the Moncayo Mountain, Northern Spain and produce a really wonderful experience. This at only £5 from local Co Op store, vegetarian and vegan apparently – that’s got to be good news too. Would serve with a traditional and well-loved tray bake perhaps or maybe a lamb tagine with a little rosemary?

Also enjoyed on the show was this fine Vina Gala (£5.50 from Co Op) A good example of a great Spanish Temparanillo from Villamalea (Albacete) packed full of soft berry flavours (not vegetarian as includes gelatine for clearing . . . .) I actually preferred this wine to the first as I do appreciate Tempranillo, not often you get a bad one. 13.5%, so also deep and well rounded, remained dry but with a super nose (smelled terrific on opening and beyond)

Smooth Swiss Wine

How wonderful! Beatrice and Peter in Switzerland gifted us a bottle of Swiss White Wine. Nice and chilled from the ice box, it was really quite delightful. Hints of citrus, slightly floral scented with a peach/apricot finish while remaining medium dry and mellow. Would definitely have this again, best served with a nice coq au vin and some tasty cheese. Aigle les Murailles, 13.2% - grape = Chasselas. Super.

Second on board: Aimone D’Italia, from my old favourite wine cellar – Aldi. Just £4.99, it’s pretty full bodied, warming and mellow, dash of vanilla spice, a tad of fruity red berriness yet staying delicate. Would imagine this with something deep and beefy, maybe an Italian Bolognese – of course.

New Year, New Wine

The first Best Smooth Jazz Show of 2020 was exciting not just because it was a new year and a brand new decade but because we were able to review a really nice Chianti . . . . in a retro basket no less. Rod received this as a gift for Christmas and, as a listener pointed out – no doubt it will be featured on a future BSJ TV show with a candle in it. It was fairly dry (as a good Chianti should be) but was forthright and spiky on the tongue – couldn’t have drunk too much of it as it should have been paired with some ripe cheese or a nice antipasti to enhance the flavour and truly appreciate its appeal. Italy is world renowned for its Chianti and this Cassatta Barrettini 2017 at 12% was a good example. Sainsburys £7.99.

Second up on the show was the inimitable ‘Underworld Blend 3’ 2018 which I was very much looking forward to tasting. South African, West Cape, from our local wine merchant – and generously gifted by Elle – it came recommended and as I love a good blend, it was therefore high up on my expectations. The grapes were Grenache noir / Durif / Carignon and Mourvèdre – a combination which should have been luscious, however I probably didn’t serve at the correct temperature because it lacked interest and although had some deep red berry fruitiness, proved to be dull and uninspiring. Note to self, make sure that red wine is warmer than room temperature – difficult to achieve sometimes in the winter (from kitchen pantry or the wine cellar) cost £12.99, 13.5%.

So, our third tasting of the day – Andes Peaks 2018, Carmenere from Chile’s Valle Central at 13.5%. Now this was the best of the bunch, loved it, interestingly still at temperature of the previous wines (not chilled obviously) tasted zesty yet plummy, just what you fancy this time of the year. It was succulent with rich tones of violet on the tongue – a mouthwash of delight. Best enjoyed with roast or grilled meats and perhaps some more of that delicious ripe cheese. £9.99 from local wine merchants but also available at most supermarkets, I have seen it in Sainsburys and Waitrose.


Do you think of chardonnay and turn up your nose in disgust? perhaps you have been damaged by the late 90's chardy's that Kath and Kim like to sip on? The ones that are heavily oaked and overly rich. Well move over Kimmy, the 6Ft6 chardonnay is here.

Contemporary, vibrant and fresh, It's full of flavour, but its pure and balanced. Think citrus and a hint of orange peel on the nose and tropical fruit flavours with a green apple acidity non the palate. It's a wine of complexity and zing that has a lovely balance of texture and flavour.

Wine-Inspired Playlist: Tunes for Your Next Tasting - Recipes

Among the many decisions you’ll need to make before your wedding day is the ever-important collection of tunes your guests will enjoy during the event.

Do you want the personal touch of a live band throughout your ceremony and reception or the flexibility of a DJ shuffling through a playlist you put together?

The question of hiring a band or a DJ is one that will play a major role in how your wedding day goes down both options bring very different tones to your event and will be among the first elements guests remember.

Here are a few questions to consider before finalizing the music for your wedding:

– What does your guest list look like and how do you anticipate that will affect the mood of your wedding? Do you have large groups of friends from college in your wedding party that expect just that — a party? Or, is your group made up of friends and family who may appreciate a more subdued event?

A live band will no doubt offer a calmer, more classic vibe to both your ceremony and your reception. While they should be able to play a wide range of songs to your liking, the band will most likely add a touch of elegance you may miss with a DJ.

On the other hand, with a DJ, you should have complete control over what is played. Maybe you want a lively dance party during your reception with clean lyrics for both the grandparents and young children in attendance. That’s the flexibility of a DJ. Plus, they do this for a living. In your pre-wedding preparations, you should be able to easily identify a goal for your music and have your DJ come through without a hitch.

– What is your budget and how much time are you willing to give this element of the wedding?

In almost every case, a live band is going to be more expensive. That’s the nature of hiring a performer. They are good at what they do and expect to be paid for it.

If you have identified music as a crucial element for your wedding day and you are willing to pay a little extra to make it happen, then by all means: Make. It. Happen.

– But consider this: You’ve got a lot on your plate in the months leading up to your big day. Do you have time to meet with multiple bands and hear a sampling of their work? What if you have a cake tasting and a band preview on the same day, and neither can reschedule? Who gets priority?

– With a DJ, the need to shop around will be less comprehensive. In many cases, a friend’s referral can be sufficient. You’re in control of what he plays anyway, right?

– What works best for your venue?

– Is your wedding indoors or outdoors? Where will the band or DJ be stationed? Can guests see and hear them from all corners of your event space?

With a band, you’ll likely want them to be more visible. Part of enjoying live music is simply being able to see the performance. If you are strapped for space in an indoor venue, you might have to ask yourself if the band’s positioning will be natural.

– At an outdoor event, will your DJ be able to set up speakers throughout the entire space? Your speakers will likely be used for speeches and toasts in addition to the music. Can you hear them from all angles?

The decision is no doubt a tough one, though you can’t go wrong with either. Think about your day and how you want it to be remembered and trust your gut when it tells you. And, if that doesn’t work, maybe hire both — a classic quartet for your ceremony and a raucous DJ to bring the energy to your reception.

Meet Your New Favorite Poolside Beverage

It’s a perfect 85 degrees, you’re sitting by the pool and you’ve got your sunnies, a summer straw hat, your trendy new throwback ‘90s one-piece bathing suit and some good tunes. Your gal pals are coming over, so all you need is an adult beverage to complete this top-notch afternoon. That’s why we’re teaming up with Barefoot Refresh Spritzers to show you how to make a refreshing sangria, perfect for serving the ladies as you get your lounge on (in a giant watermelon slice floaty, no less).

This sangria is made with Barefoot Refresh Spritzer, which adds a little sparkle to the classic cocktail. It’s seriously YUM, so prepare yourself to give everyone at the party the recipe. Also, we’re stoked because Barefoot Refresh Summer Red Spritzer is now served in a single-serve can, which makes it ideal for pool parties, park adventures and beach days. After all, we all know the rules: No glass at the pool. And we say to that: no glass, no problem. Read on for the recipe.

— 2 oranges

— (1) 10-ounce bag frozen sweetened raspberries

— 3 cans Barefoot Refresh Summer Red Spritzer


1. Slice oranges and lemons and layer them in the bottom of your pitcher. Scoop some raspberries over the top.

2. Add triple sec, agave, lemonade, then three cans Barefoot Refresh Summer Red Spritzer.

First slice all of your citrus and layer it on the bottom of your pitcher.

We couldn’t resist the opportunity to make our layers look beautiful )

Next, add a layer of raspberries (we recommend letting them thaw slightly before adding them to the jug). Follow the berries with triple sec, agave and lemonade. Add your ice, then top it off with three cans of Barefoot Refresh Summer Red Spritzer.

Mix and enjoy! We garnished our glasses with lemon slices, raspberries, mint and one of those fun swirly straws from childhood. (How good were those?!)

Ahhh, we love long summer days out in the sunshine with a cocktail in hand!

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Weekend Tune-Up: Tunes for your weekend by Cayucas, Atlas Genius, Tyga, Thundercat & more

A playlist of 15 tunes to launch you into the weekend, Spotify playlist included.

The last weekend of June is here, and it's hot as hell outside. You need a playlist that can keep you cool at the pool or oceanside, and I've got you covered. Even though I'm on vacation, I couldn't leave you without your weekly Tune-Up, and this week's edition is more uptempo and party inspired than usual.

Atlas Genius finally released a new single off their upcoming sophomore LP, Inanimate Objects. HEALTH has a new fast-paced track, and it belongs on this playlist. Thundercat dropped his new mini-album, but it's basically just three new songs you need to hear it, nonetheless. Cayucas issued a new record on Tuesday, Dancing at the Blue Lagoon, more surf guitar and positive vibes from the California brothers-led group. Skylar Spence, once known as Saint Pepsi, has a new groovy club jam off his debut album, Prom King. And I can't promise this will be the last time I share music off of Jamie xx's fantastic new album if you haven't given it a chance yet, please do.

1. Atlas Genius, "Molecules"
2. Tyga Feat. Lil Wayne, "4 My Dawgs"
4. Thundercat, "Them Changes"
5. Slum Village Feat, J Ivy, "Windows"

6. Cayucas, "Hella"
7. Seoul, "Silencer"
8. Fractures, "Reactor"
9. Dam Funk, "We Continue"
10. Skylar Spence, "Can't You See"
11. Jamie xx, "Hold Tight"
12. Yukon Blonde, "Saturday Night"
13. EMEFE, "Free To Scream"
14. Colleagues, "Align"
15. Addictive, "Borrowed Identity"

Small plates are also great for a more relaxed gathering. For this type of affair we’d suggest a Spanish-style buffet. You can’t go wrong with an Instagram-worthy appetizer board, plus an assortment of easy-to-eat items that don’t require a fork and a knife. Montados and Banderillas are ideal for this type of event.

When it comes to throwing a tapas party, it’s all about the food, so menu planning is key. You’ll want to choose an array of shareables based on guest count, dietary preferences, and the format of your fête (sit-down dinner vs. casual cocktails). Below are a few of our favorite tempting tapas recipes.

    - Ham and cheese croquettes - Shrimp sauteed in olive oil and garlic - Omelet with potato and onion, considered the national dish of Spain - Grilled octopus - Stuffed mussels that are batter and fried - Chilled tomato soup that’s vegetarian-friendly and great for summer - smoked salmon and cream cheese on a baguette - Fried potatoes topped with a warm, creamy garlicky sauce

Cooking Music

It's a warm, acoustic guitar-driven track with light percussion, whistling, and bell-like tones. The acoustic guitar is performed in an original finger-picking rhythm, followed by a smooth chord progression throughout the piece. The overall tone of this piece is positive, upbeat, and cheerful, yet inspiring and moving at the same time. Meant to be a background music track – it will work perfectly for corporate presentations, commercials, and projects in need of a gentle, uplifting atmosphere.

This is lovely and very beautiful tune with a positive and joyful atmosphere. Main instruments are acoustic guitar, piano, strings, and bells. Perfect background for peaceful home video, knitting workshop, rural scenes, countryside real estate videos, cooking recipes, etc.

This is background and smooth royalty free bossa nova, jazz track. Ideal for advertising, TV cooking shows, elevators, travels, or summer clips.

A hybrid of Asian and European soundtrack :) Great background music for cooking, travel, restaurant, spa, tourism, corporate branding/presentation, documentary and new product launch.

Feeling good and bouncy, featuring relaxed and bouncy upright stride-piano to create a happy and old-style mood.

Mellow and hopeful acoustic folk track, with a cosy and heartwarming ambience. Choose this background music for your cooking recipes videos, before and after house flips, happy B-Day celebration with family and beloved one, social media content, and more. Enjoy the life with MelodyLoops :)

A dynamic, positive and uplifting swing track. Brass section, horns, drums and upright bass give this track an organic feel. A perfect choice for cooking videos, pet videos, web commercials, advertorials, tutorial advertisements, personal videos, web videos and much more. You'll get the attention you need for your project with this catchy tune!

Uplifting, inspirational, and motivational background music with electric guitar, piano, synth, and pop drums create a positive and feel-good mood.

Chill funky breakbeat with a retro feel featuring piano, electric piano, acoustic guitars, old-school groovy drum beat, funky brass and horns. Good for cooking TV and online show, program, travel and vacation visuals.

Fun upbeat music track with comedy vibe. You can hear ukulele, marimba, xylophone, glockenspiel, strings pizzicato, claps snips, piano and accordion. This track is best suited for cooking vlogs or TV show, podcasts about food, travels, family oriented commercials and comedy stand-ups.

An upbeat, happy and fun track featuring ukulele, catchy piano, hand claps and glockenspiels. Ideal for YouTube videos, YouTubers, vlogs and vloggers, beauty gurus, makeup tutorials, cooking videos, cat videos, commercial, business and corporate use or productions aimed at children.

Happy and carefree french gypsy jazz music track. Background music like this makes your media project really special and catchy.

A cheerful, upbeat, gypsy swing track with a pleasant melody reminiscent of Italian / Mediterranean traditions and sounds. Ideal for productions related to cooking, dining or friendly, family atmospheres. Loop and full version available.

"Barbecue Championship" is a driving track in a positive and cheerful mood. A Balkan-style trombone plays the main theme together with jazzy basses, guitars, and driving drums beats. This track has a positive and jolly mood that makes you want to cook something for your friends or family. It would be great for cooking TV shows, travel channel clips, food commercials, and much more.

Warm and bouncy electro-swing track, featuring a proud Sax melody, clarinets background, guitar and a strong rhythmic section to create a happy and uplifting mood.

Nice and happy commercial swing with beautiful melodies recorded with human whistle, clarinet, gypsy swing acoustic guitars, drums and bass. Perfect for your video presentations, advertising, films, games, cooking show.

Bright and happy folk ukulele tune. Perfect for children's events, family advertisements, happy commercials, kids' footage, cooking shows, and any sort of positive media that requires cheerful and joyful background music. 4 versions included.

This is an instrumental jazz music. Great for cocktail party and cafe lounge, bars and restaurant, cooking and food shows, midnight and nightclub situations, New York or Paris moods, casino and elevator music and more.

Happy and upbeat acoustic background music with an uplifting and sunny mood. Featuring a fun ukulele, human whistle, and acoustic guitars, which is perfect for children's videos, travel videos, family advertisment, cooking vlogs, movie trailers, film, and video games.

A beautiful acoustic tune with ukulele guitars and sweet catchy bell melodies. Would fit perfectly with video explainers, unpacking videos, business.

A happy-go-luck and feel-good acoustic track. Featuring acoustic guitars, claps, bass, ukulele, glockenspiel and mandolin. Great choice for cooking videos, DIY tutorials, house renovation projects, kids videos, funny animal scenes and many more. If your projects needs an uplifting and positive sound, this track is just for you.

It's fun, upbeat, and catchy jazz music that featured saxes, trumpets, piano, and nice jazz drumming. It will be great for ads, vlogs, funny videos, comic misadventures, cooking vlogs, or comedy heists.

A Southern flavored royalty free country/rock'n'roll, with guitar solos catchy acoustic chords, bass, and drums, best for travels, parties, or promo videos.

This is happy and joyful tune with carefree and cheerful mood. Main instruments are bells, acoustic guitar, glockenspiel and drums. Perfect background audio for any YouTube video, funny commercial, kids projects, cartoon animation, joyful game, sweet moments, cooking vlogs, and more.

Beautiful bossa jazz tune with high-quality sound production. Perfect as background music for presentations, food & cooking shows, commercial, advertising, positive atmosphere in restaurants, hotels, cocktails parties, entertainment centers, and for any of your projects.

Happy and joyful melody featuring cheerful piano and bright chimes creating a happy go lucky everyday melody containing easy and simple elements. Very carefree and laid back conveying a sense of simplicity making it useful for demonstration, tuition or advertising.

This is a jazzy gypsy happy music, full of fun and rhythm. Great for French and Italian style projects, funny comedy jazz scenes, cooking shows background, restaurant and happy food music and much more.

A cool, fun, and catchy jazz music featured saxophones, trumpets, guitar, piano, and nice jazz drumming. It is great to use in advertisements, vlogs, funny videos, comic actions, cooking vlogs, or comedy heists.

This one is an easy listening acoustic jazz music with light swing movement and a relaxing atmosphere. Perfect background for restaurant atmosphere, cooking shows, lounge areas, drinks advertising, coffee promotions, luxury lifestyle, music for elevators, call centers, and bars.

This is positive and easy-going jazz music, full of fun and smiles. It is great for positive and cheerful scenes, kids and children projects, coffee shops music, cocktail parties background, jazz clubs, chefs and restaurant kitchen shows, funny and comical background, pantomime and silent films, food and cooking recipes, and more.

This is a jazzy gypsy happy music, full of fun and rhythm. Great for French and Italian kitchen, funny comedy jazz scenes, cooking shows, happy background music for restaurant or food store.

Energetic jazzy music in a positive, quirky and happy moods. It features jazz big band brasses, xylophones, acoustic guitars, driving bass, and beat. This track would be nice for placement into the cooking shows or funny videos about pets.

Favorite Moments - the inspirational acoustic track is featuring with folk guitar, piano, and warm pad. Have inspiring, happy, and positive moods. Suitable for tutorials, presentations, nature, family, and beautiful video projects.

A happy-go-lucky and feel-good ukulele track. Featuring acoustic guitars, claps, bass, ukulele, glockenspiel and drums. Great choice for cooking videos, DIY tutorials, house renovation projects, kids videos, funny animal scenes and many more. If your projects needs an uplifting and positive sound, this track is just for you.

An inspiring and uplifting corporate music track. Perfect to set an optimistic and motivational mood. Great for presentations, YouTube videos, tutorials, slideshows, montages, openers, business videos, science and technology projects, lifestyle and travel, medical and health videos, real estate, startup videos, app promos, explainers, and more.

This is beautiful cinematic comical music. Great for cute and children videos, easy to smile Youtube videos, cute cartoon animations, Tv shows about gastronomy and cooking, funny moments, commercials aimed at family and children, humorous situations.

It is a smooth funky track with catchy guitars, a stylish hip-hop beat, and atmospheric organ chords. Perfect for Advertising, Urban Street Videos, Vlogs, Tutorial, Cooking, Corporate Slideshow, and other commercial visuals.

Happy music track with whistling, bells and claps. Cute melodies and playful mood create funny atmosphere. Perfect for projects with children, animals, food, family oriented commercials, Easter and travel vlogs.

This is an elegant light jazz music. Great for cocktail party and restaurant cafe background, romantic and intimacy scenes, Paris and French atmosphere, lounge and nightclubs, cooking shows, elevator music and much more.

A carefree, playful acoustic tune for creating an atmosphere of happiness. Instruments: ukuleles, bells, claps, guitars, piano, and drums. Great to use for children's content, ads, cooking shows, vlogs, advertisements.

Fun western-style jig containing rustic elements suggests farming or an American country setting. A lively piano-backed and banjo creates a typical ragtime feel, making it useful for comedy or quirky end uses.

Light and laid-back, featuring a Bluesy ukulele melody that creates a carefree and lazy mood. Uku blues, ideal sound for films, tv, presentations, cooking, video and simply to have a rest.

Happy, positive, motivational, upbeat and funny ukulele music track. Great for kids projects, sweet moments with family and friends, cute advertising, lovely cooking videos, optimistic sunny day, and more.

A playful, happy, carefree royalty free folk song, with fun guitars, ukulele, bells, whistles, soft bass, percussion and claps. Great for kids related, family, cooking shows or travel videos.

A relaxing and sunny bossa nova track with a jazz guitar groove, catchy piano and flute melodies, pure vibes, and jazzy drums. Great for TV and radio advertisements, animations, elevators, lobby and hotel scenes, catchy romantic scenes, elevators, lounges, video games, and any project is needing a goofy and jazzy music background.

A unique tune with a great sense of humor and full of rhythm in shoes of tap dance. Suitable for animations and comedies, caper story, magic show, cooking video, vintage cinema, Harry Potter like movie. Featuring strings, muted piano, and various junk percussion.

A carefree, fun and energetic jazz music featured saxophones, trumpets, piano and nice jazz drumming. Great to use in advertisements, vlogs, funny videos, comic misadventure, cooking vlogs, or comedy heist.

This one is a positive and easy-going chillhop track. Features a dreamy piano, airy Rhodes, and dope synths that will work for both travel videos or fashion visuals. The perfect background track for food vloggers, fashionistas, or anyone looking to ramp up their content with some cool beats.

The positive and sunny folk track featuring strumming acoustic guitar, piano, clapping, and a warm pad. Happy and uplifting melody for a family occasion, cooking show, rural oriented projects, and much more.

A happy, carefree, and upbeat song with ukuleles, acoustic guitars, bells, whistles, nice percussion, and handclaps. Great for media content related to children, pets, and happy families, cooking shows, Youtube vlogs, or commercials.

It's carefree and happy acoustic music with a positive mood. Ukulele, whistling, soothing bells and glockenspiel create a cheerful melody. Perfect for all kinds of happy video projects such as commercials, presentations, and much more. If you need a super-bright and upbeat track for your next video, then this could be the one!

Sweet and carefree ukulele track with a catchy melody full of warm summer vibes. Perfect background music for TV Ads, Radio Commercials, YouTube Videos, cooking, travel show, and holiday visuals.

This royalty free music track is that kind of awesome music theme that deaf can hear and blind can see! It's a cinematic chamber orchestral background soundtrack, perfect for your film trailers, movie scenes, background presentations, a slide show, historical documentaries, commercials, marketing and other various projects. Its slightly unusual and quirky atmosphere will definitely shape and form your projects in the best possible way!

Nice and happy commercial swing with beautiful melodies recorded with clarinet, gypsy jazz acoustic guitars, drums and double bass. Perfect for your video presentations, advertising, films, or cooking show.

Upbeat and carefree song with guitars, ukulele, bells, claps, snaps, piano, percussion and more. Use it anywhere you want to create the happy atmosphere! Perfect as background music for happy projects, YouTube video, vlogs, travel vieos, game, cooking and other inspiring videos.

Energetic, groovy Disco Funk track in style bands like Jamiroquai with a smooth analog synth theme over funk guitars and a modern danceable four on the floor drumbeat with a groovy mood like synth bass line. Ideal instrumental background music for fashion shows/catwalk music, commercials, party announcements, workout videos, etc.

This is upbeat, fun and energetic jazz music featured saxes, trumpets, piano and nice jazz drumming. Will be great for advertisements, vlogs, funny videos, comic misadventure, cooking vlogs, or comedy heist.

Happy, uplifting acoustic background composition is full of positive vibes. The moderate melody rhythm gives cheerfulness, like early family morning, when you rush to work with a cup of hot coffee or the first rays of the sun on your bed. Perfect for the cooking vlog, food and drink ads, media for children, friendship, and more.

Traditional Italian folk track with a cinematic feel. Features mandolin, acoustic guitar, strings, and accordion. Great for themes involving Italy, Venice, Sicily, Rome, romance, nostalgia, sentimental journey, Italian cooking, pizza, pasta, gondolier, heartbreak, lost love.

This is happy and easy listening jazz music with old school swing sound. Main instruments are big band jazz orchestra, piano, guitar and drums. Perfect background audio for uplifting comedy, video games for children and kids, cooking show, cartoon animations, funny video, and more.

The first cooking show aired on BBC in 1946 during the war. At first, he had a cooking show on the radio and later had his TV show. There was no say whether the show had any background tunes and neither is there any such record of when melodies became a part of the cooking show industry. All we know is that music is a huge part of any cooking show or event.

When talking about shows, the music is often found to be fairly calm and light. You will not find a party genre or any of the other different genres being played at the back. The aim is to give a background music that shows how easy and light the cooking is.

Styles such as Smooth Jazz, Soft Rock, R&B, Melodic Rock, Pop, Light Ambient or Electronica is used as background music. These styles are easy going which help in setting the environment of the show.

In cooking events, the music is usually chosen according to the event being held. If it is a contest, the music is mostly chosen accordingly. For example, an upbeat song can be played at the contest to symbolise competition and energetic contestants.

For cooking videos, people more than often choose smooth jazz or melodic or soft rock. This helps in keeping the mood light. Another key point is that background music might even help in attracting viewers. The correct ambience might get you a whole bunch of viewers.

TV shows like Top Chef and Master Chef have music accordingly. If we talk about the music background on Master Chef, it varies accordingly. During a time-limited task the music is upbeat indicating speed and the time limit. It goes perfectly along with the event of the moment. While the judges taste the food, the music is either light or nerve-wracking indicating nervousness.

The music for cooking shows, events or videos can either pull or push away viewers. It is better to have music according to the task or event at hand than having rock music to a baking show!

Watch the video: Γεύσεις και Οίνος Επ. 14 Σεζόν 05 (August 2022).