tips, tipples & table talk – Week 5

This week’s post will have all the usual tips, tipples and table talk, but we thought we’d take this oppourtunity to highlight a more serious issue: It’s broken, so let’s fix it. Ireland has the highest tax on wine in Europe, 576% higher than the EU average (according to NOFFLA) and that’s before the 70% mark up some places add on. This summer, when we see so many overseas visitors to our fair isle, we must take a moment to look at our taxes, our margins,  how wine lovers from abroad must view our wine pricing when dining out – and how we can fix it.

Top Insta Pics of the Week

A picture speaks a thousand words and our ely customers sure are a snap happy bunch! Here are our top pick of instagram pictures we spotted from you guys this week.

Free wifi (so you can get snapping) at: ely bar & brasserieely gastro bar ely wine bar 

instagram collage

Taste tip of the Week: The ‘Wine with Fish’ Question

This summer, you’ll no doubt be enjoying some delicious fresh fish at home, as the main dish at a garden party or tucking in to it at one of our elys. With that in mind we thought we’d discuss which wine should accompany your fish.

People sometimes wonder whether the ‘white wine with fish, red wine with meat’ rule really matters. While we think that you should always drink the wine you want, we also believe that there are a few reasons for the customs and traditions that have developed around wine over hundreds of years.

Like all traditions, people will be tempted to break with them. And while there’s perhaps no harm in that, the fact is that most dry white wines go with fish, and most red wines go with meat. An exception might be a very rich fish dish, which can be
complemented by a light red – maybe a pinot noir or gamay-based wine.

Enjoy our superb-for-sharing seafood platter for 2 + btl Raphael Palacios ‘Bolo’ Godello, Valdeorras, €65 at: ely wine bar 

DSC_1149

Tipple of the Week: The Caipirinha 

The World Cup is in full swing and Brazil is the talk of the town this week. Some comments are good, some not-so but it’s not their football skills we’re interested in. With all the good weather of late we’d be forgiven for sitting back on the terrace, relaxing and imagining we’re on the sunny strand of Copacabana while we sip on Brazil’s national cocktail, the Caipirinha.

What you need:

  • 1 lime, quartered
  • 2 teaspoons fine sugar
  • Ice cubes
  • 2 ounces of cachaça

Place the lime wedges and sugar into an old fashioned glass. Muddle well. Fill the glass with ice cubes and pour in the cachaca. Stir well and when drinking, stir often.

Note: It’s important to use real cachaça as it is the main driving force behind the cocktail! We use Brazilian sagatiba cachaça.

Available at: ely bar & brasserie

caipirinha

 

Talking point of the Week: Wine, Taxes, And Ireland’s Broken System.

“DUBLIN – Forest fires in Australia.

Heavy rains in Spain.

Hailstorms and heat waves in France and Italy.

Plus a cumulative 60% tax increase in the past twelve months.

No, these are not signs that the apocalypse is upon us.

They are just the factors affecting how a bottle of wine makes its way to your table – and what it costs when it gets there – when your table is within the city limits of Dublin, Ireland in particular.” – Cathy Huyghe, Forbes

Check out the full Forbes article and read ely’s wine value promise to you.

wine tax 2

Event of the Week: The Wildlife Photographer of the Year

For the first time ever, The world-renowned Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition is in Dublin and open to the public from Friday 27th June. Now in its 50th year, the competition has resulted in some of the most memorable and thought provoking images of the natural world. 100 award winning images from the 2013 competition will be on display at the CHQ Building, IFSC. This one isn’t just for nature and wildlife enthusiasts but travel, culture and photography fans will enjoy it too!

wildlife photographer of the year 2

 

tips, tipples & table talk – Week 4

Summer has officially arrived in Ireland and not a moment too soon (we were getting worried there for a few weeks). From World Cup wines, BBQ craft beers to the perfect picnic snack – hopefully this week’s tips, tipples & table talk will have you sorted for the sunny weather. Enjoy it while it lasts folks!

Wine World Cup: Group B – Spain v Chile – KO: 20.00

Rafael Palacios ‘Bolo’ Godello Valdeorras Spain v De Martino Chardonnay Limari Valley Chile

Spain’s native white grape Godello goes up against the might of Chilean Chardonnay in today’s Wine World Cup play-off. Both have their strengths.

The Chilean Chardonnay has an abundance of ripe tropical fruit and wonderfully creamy palate. Spain, however, has history on its side – the first written record of Godello goes back to the 1530’s. Lean, crisp, but with a lovely peachy fruitiness. We’re going to back this one as the winner this evening – and enjoy it on the sunny terrace!

Games showing at: ely bar & brasserieely gastro bar 

world cup wines

We’ve also noticed quite a few of you who just want to grab a drink and a bite in the evening, chill out and avoid world cup fever.

ely wine bar is officially a football free zone.

infographic world cup football free zone

Taste tip of the Week: Summer Pesto

The perfect accompaniment to any summer picnic or lunchtime snack, our taste tip of the week is so easy to make yourself. Sure, it could be quicker to buy your own at the supermarket but trust us, homemade pesto is always worth the effort.

What you need:

  • 200g toasted pine nuts
  • 200g fresh basil leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp rock salt
  • 200ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 100g parmesan cheese, finely grated

Summer Pesto

How we do it:

  • Put the pine nuts in a small pan and heat gently, stirring continuously, until golden brown – be careful not to burn them.
  • Put the basil, pine nuts, garlic and a good pinch of salt with 200ml olive oil into a food processor until it
  • reaches a creamy consistency.
  • Add the parmesan and pulse again.
  • Serve with extra pine nuts, basil leaves and parmesan.
  • To store, spoon into a screw top jar, or preserving jar and cover with 1 tbsp oil, this will keep in the fridge for 3 days.

Stir into freshly cooked pasta for a summer salad, use as a dip, or spread over bruschetta – however you like your pesto! 

For more recipes, see ely’s award-winning cookbook here.

pesto bowl

Craft Beer(s) of the Week: BBQ Brews

There’s nothing like that smell of char-grilling in the air and with this heatwave we’re experiencing, we hope to smell a lot of it this week! Why not take a break from the token summer beers and ciders, that have usually been marketed with a bikini clad lady and the slogan “ice cold refreshment”, and pick up an equally refreshing craft brew. Here are our top BBQ brews of the week:

  1. Longboard island lager, Kona Brewing Co. – Light, grassy with floral hops. This one is crisp, refreshing and easy drinking. Great warm weather beer. Surf’s up!
  2. Coopers sparkling pale ale, Coopers Brewery – A good one for its versatility, it can be enjoyed in either cool or warm weather. Slight citrus flavour which for us, was quite unexpected for a pale ale. The fresh, fruity taste will satisfy any cider drinker.
  3. Hollows alcoholic ginger beer, John Hollows – Not too tangy, not too sweet – this is grown up Goldilocks’ top choice. The few real ingredients make one of the best ginger beers we’ve come across. Seriously refreshing and made from the finest ginger root, this makes for fantastic summer beer drinking.
  4. Craigies Irish Cider (Ballyhook Flyer) – What would a summer session be without at least one cider? We always love a cider with wine influences and this one has a wonderful balance between fruitiness and dryness. Its savoury qualities make it a great one to enjoy at BBQs, while still being light enough to have with food.

Available at: ely bar & brasserie, ely gastro bar 

craft beer bbq brews

Contact us for your semi-private BBQ options on our waterfront terrace.

BBQ collage CHQ

 

ely wine tastings May – July 2014

Each week a guest speaker will present a selection of wines from the given region and we’ll serve up a supper dish to match. All wine tastings take place at ely bar & brasserie and start at 7pm sharp.

Thursday May 22nd –  Alsace. ely bar & brasserie, IFSC
This is quite possibly the most interesting and varied white wine producing region in the world. Home to a wide range of grape varieties, many with the potential to produce wines of Grand Cru status. Add to that some of the world’s greatest sweet wines. However, Alsace still suffers from being misunderstood, much the same as Germany. While there are many Germanic influences, the wines of Alsace are utterly unique and deserve your utmost attention!
ENDED

Thursday June 5th – Italy’s traditional Grape Varieties. ely bar & brasserie, IFSC
The most exciting thing about Italian wines- and Italy is THE most exciting wine country in the world- is the vast array of grapes that they grow. There are hundreds of varieties grown across the country, and probably many more that we haven’t even heard of – you could drink Italian wines every day for a year and never have the same grape variety twice!! However, you walk into a supermarket here and you’ll most likely see 10 types of Pinot Grigio and a Chianti. We are going to taste the real Italy, wines with genuine character and a real sense of tradition.
 SOLD OUT (But join us for the next one!)

Thursday June 19th – Red Burgundy. ely bar & brasserie, IFSC 
Buying Burgundy is like navigating an minefield- and red Burgundy especially so. Despite the fact that all the wines are produced from a single grape variety, it is essential to know your producers, vineyards and  vintages to ensure you get value for money. But when you find the right one, it rewards in ways that no other wine can. From Bourgogne AC to the finest Premier and Grand Cru, there are incredible Burgundies to be found if you know where to look. And you need look no further that ely. Join us for a richly rewarding tasting of some of the big names and some of the lesser known treats from this most fascinating of wine regions.

Thursday July 10th – Wines of Germany 
Adored by those in the wine business, but sadly often overlooked by the wine drinking public. However, there is no debating the quality – Germany produces some of the finest white wines in the world! – Rieslings of varying styles from bone dry and minerally, to rich and sweet – but always impeccably balanced and complex. Even less appreciated and the stunning reds- 100% Pinot Noir – and quite possibly the finest outside of Burgundy

Thursday July 24th – The Loire Valley. ely bar & brasserie, IFSC 
As wine regions go the Loire Valley has to be one of the most varied and exciting in the world. Red and white, still and sparkling, bone dry to wonderfully sweet, it has something to offer everyone! Everyone knows of Sancerre, Pouilly Fume and Muscadet but the real gems are probably lesser known- Chenin from Savennieres, Montlouis and Vouvray; reds such as Chinon, St. Nicolas de Bourgueil and red Sancerre. The sweet wines, from the lighter to the richest, are absolutely world class. Join us for what promises for a genuinely fascinating and surprising tasting.

For more info do contact Ian Brosnan at  678-7867 or on wineclub@elywinebar.com 

Castell d’Encus Tharlan 2010

From Costers del Segre in the far north east of Spain, in the foothills of the Pyrenees, at an altitude ranging from 800-1000m, Castell d’Encus is making extraordinarily elegant wines. From the intense Ekam Riesling, the refined Cabernet based Quest to the almost Pinot like Tharlan which is in fact 100% Syrah. Grown at 1000m in cool conditions and fermented in rock vats and stainless steel and then aged in French oak, this is a very subtle and restrained Syrah.

The site was first established by monks in 1100 and since identified for its outstanding potential given the high altitude, meaning less problems of high sugar levels and low acidity in the grapes, and also better development of flavour and aromas. The Tharlan is bright and ripe, without being over the top. This is an exciting new style of Spanish red.

Press Reviews: 95 points, Robert Parker’s ‘The Wine Advocate:

image“The brilliant 2010 Thalarn is a pure Syrah that is partially fermented in rock vessels and stainless steel and aged in barrel for 10 months in 70% new oak. It has an incredibly intense bouquet of small black cherries, cassis, blueberry and a touch of peppercorn that is very well-defined, but extremely primal.

The palate is medium-bodied with filigree tannins and a satin-like texture. It possesses outstanding focus and precision plus wonderful minerality and clarity towards the finish that exudes finesse, handling the new oak so that you barely notice it. This is an exceptional Syrah that should age magnificently.”

Exclusive to ely wine bar in Ely Place.

We’ve just received 3 cases of this superb wine and it’s highly unlikely that we will see it again in Ireland given its limited production and international acclaim. You won’t find it anywhere else in Ireland and if you like the subtleties of Burgundy and the flavours of the Northern Rhone then this is a wine for you.

For more information please visit www.elywinebar.com 

ely wine tasting evenings April / May 2014

alsace Italy rhone

Each week a guest speaker will present a selection of wines from the given region and we’ll serve up a supper dish to match.
All wine tastings take place at ely bar & brasserie and start at 7pm sharp.

Thursday April 17th – Wines of the Northern Rhone
The wines of the Southern Rhone may be more recognised- Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Cotes du Rhone etc. – but anyone in the know will tell you that all the excitement is up North. Sensational whites, many of which remain just below the radar for most of us, are matched by outstanding reds- this is the spiritual home of Syrah! This is undoubtedly a ‘fine wine’ region, producing some of the greatest wines in France, without ever reaching the astronomical price tags of some other French region. It is a wine lovers dream!
Register now for wine tasting & supper €45

Thursday May 22nd – Alsace
This is quite possibly the most interesting and varied white wine producing region in the world. Home to a wide range of grape varieties, many with the potential to produce wines of Grand Cru status. Add to that some of the world’s greatest sweet wines. However, Alsace still suffers from being misunderstood, much the same as Germany. While there are many Germanic influences, the wines of Alsace are utterly unique and deserve your utmost attention!
Register now for wine tasting & supper €45

For more info visit http://www.elywinebar.ie/about/wine-apreciation/ely-wine-tastings

 

One of the best wines we’ve tasted in years!

Donnafugata ‘Ben Ryé’ Passito di Pantelleria 2011

This stunning dessert wine come from Pantelleria, a tiny island off Sicily, but is actually closer to Africa than Italy. Arabic influences aboundwith Donnafugata, from the name of the wine- Ben Ryé is derived from the Arabic ‘son of the wind’ – to the beautiful Arabian nights inspired labels.

Donna Fugata

The wine itself is suitably exotic!
The grape is Zibibbo, an ancient Sicilian grape variety which is probably more commonly known as Muscat of Alexandria. The vines are more than 100 years old, and this is expressed in the concentration of flavour. A beautiful amber colour, incredibly enticing nose of apricot, orange peel, sweet orange and spice.

On the palate it is rich and sweet but perfectly balanced, with the crisp acidity providing a perfect freshness to all of those wonderfully evocative flavours. It is quite simply the most wonderful dessert wine we’ve tasted in years. Scrap that- it’s one of the best wines we’ve tasted in years. It is available in ely winebar, Ely Place by the glass for just €9.

Treat yourself!

Pop in to ely wine bar for a bite to eat and a couple of drinks.
Book now at elywinebar.com

Wines of the Languedoc by Ian Brosnan

Another wonderful wine tasting in ely bar & brasserie which showed the range and quality of the wines currently being produced in this part of France.

Previously thought of as a ‘poor man’s Rhone’, the Languedoc has become the most exciting wine region in France whilst remaining the best value- everyone wins!

ely_wine_bar_Languedoc_wine_tasting_04First up was Domaine Felines Jourdan Picpoul de Pinet 2012– unquestionably one of the producers of this grape. Crisp, lemon -fresh and a lovely dry, minerally finish- this is the perfect wine for our rapidly approaching summer. Think shellfish…..

We followed this with a beautiful Rosé from Domaine de L’Hortus– one of our favourites!-Bergerie de L’Hortus. A blend of mostly Grenache and Syrah, this is a fresh, dry rosé, with aromas of strawberry and hints of pepper. Fantastic!

Two ely stalwarts next, Chateau La Baronne Corbieres 2009 and Luc Lapeyre ‘ L’Amourier’ Minnervois 2010. Both have graced all three wine lists at various times and both represent fantastic value for money.
Domaine de L’Hortus again, but this time the Grand Cuvee 2010 – a stunning blend of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvedre. Rich, spicy but incredibly smooth- this is one of the classic wines of the Languedoc.

ely_wine_bar_Languedoc_wine_tasting_02

Last up was the sensational Mas Julien, Terrasses du Larzac. Winemaker Olivier Julien has produced what is quite possibly the finest wine in the entire region- a blend of Syrah, Carignan and Mourvedre, it is intensely flavoured with all the classic Languedoc flavours- blackberry, spice and dried herbs- but so wonderfully elegant that it’s hard to believe what you are drinking! A world class wine that you should try at least once.
These wines are not available in wine shops or supermarkets, but can all be bought directly from the fantastic Wines Direct website www.winesdirect.ie
Happy shopping.

For upcoming wine tastings visit http://www.elywinebar.ie

%d bloggers like this: