Wine

England's green and pleasant wine

Chapel Down BacchusIt's English Wine Week, so of course it must be raining. That pretty much captures the essence of what it's like to be an English winemaker - great when the sun shines but for the other 300 days of the year it's just plain hard work getting grapes to ripen in less than ideal conditions. Luckily newer cross-bred grape varieties make it easier to produce an end product surpassing New World competitors.

Read more: England's green and pleasant wine

Three quid bargain wine

Mont Tauch labelMany wine experts predicted the extinction of the three pound bottle from Britain's supermarket wine aisles following the Chancellor's recent duty increases. But rummage among the expensive named chateau in the 'French' wine aisle of your nearest Somerfield supermarket and you'll find a great bargain hiding behind a sepia monstrosity of a wine label. Mont Tauch Corbières 2006 may not look much from the outside but the young and vibrant wine inside will get you excited.

Read more: Three quid bargain wine

Got the Blues

Blue Nun MerlotThe red was fruity and pleasant, but not something I’d want to pay more than £3.99 a bottle for. The dry rosé tasted of strawberries, but little else. Both had an easy-drinking nature which hinted that they might be French or Italian. But I was only half right. France and Italy make good mass-market wines and, yes, that red turned out to be a French Merlot. But the rosé was Spanish – and there’s a good chance you’d find them both on the shelves under ‘Germany’. Because these two wines are branded Blue Nun.

Read more: Got the Blues

Have you won red, white and sparkling wine from Jacob's Creek?

Jacob's Creek sparklingThanks to all all paulagoddard.com readers who entered the Win red, white and sparkling wine from Jacob's Creek competition. This competition has now closed.

Take a look to see if your name is among the 5 winners to receive a mixed half-case of Jacob's Creek wine to include two bottles of: Jacob's Creek Three Vines Semillon Sauvignon Blanc Viognier, sparkling Chardonnay Pinot Noir and Jacob's Creek Reserve Shiraz.

Read more: Have you won red, white and sparkling wine from Jacob's Creek?

Win red, white and sparkling wine from Jacob's Creek

Jacob's Creek ShirazEnter my competition to win one of 5 mixed half-cases of Jacob's Creek wine and bring a touch of Australian sunshine into your life this Christmas. Answer 3 multiple-choice questions correctly and you could be sipping Jacob's Creek Three Vines Semillon Sauvignon Blanc Viognier with your roast dinner; listening to The Queen's broadcast with a glass of sparkling Chardonnay Pinot Noir and saving a bottle of Jacob's Creek Reserve Shiraz for a Boxing Day treat.

STOP PRESS: THIS COMPETITION HAS NOW CLOSED - WINNERS ANNOUNCED

Read more: Win red, white and sparkling wine from Jacob's Creek

Have you won tickets to The Wine Show?

Wine Show logoThanks to all all paulagoddard.com readers who entered the Win tickets to The Wine Show competition. This competition has now closed. Take a look to see if your name is among the 10 winners of pairs of tickets for The Wine Show on Sunday 28 October. If your name isn't listed, don't despair - why not enter my new competition to win Black Magic's new range of dark chocolates.

Read more: Have you won tickets to The Wine Show?

Wine university

classroomIf you've just started an evening class in wine appreciation at your local adult education centre and don't know what to say when the course tutor asks the inevitable “so what do think this wine smells of?”, then have a read of my column on livingit.com. Hopefully you will be taught by a knowledgeable wine tutor like Pamela Brown, a tutor with the Kent Adult Education Service, who took over the teaching of my existing wine courses when I was moving to Warwickshire in 2006.

Read more: Wine university

Co-op launches own-label Fairtrade wines

fairtrade logoToday sees the launch of the Co-op's first own-label Fairtrade Reserve wines, a white from South Africa and a red from Argentina. Reserve status means the two new wines are priced at £5.99, £2 more per bottle than the Co-op's 12 other Fairtrade wines – but are they worth it?

Read more: Co-op launches own-label Fairtrade wines

Free energy from a cup of tea

teacupGot a half-finished cup of tea sitting on your desk? Rather than letting it go cold, why not use its milk and sugared heat to power your desk lamp? It's all down to an ingenious device invented by the Scottish clergyman Robert Stirling in 1816. A cup-sized version of his Stirling engine is being sold by gyroscope.com for £45.99.

Read more: Free energy from a cup of tea

Win tickets to The Wine Show

The Wine Show logoWant to meet Oz Clarke, the star of Oz and James' Big Wine Adventure, or Tim Atkin, The Observer's wine correspondent? Or have the opportunity to sample 1000s of wines from around the world? Then win one of 10 pairs of tickets for The Wine Show 2007 and get along to the UK’s largest event exclusively devoted to wine.

STOP PRESS: THIS COMPETITION HAS NOW CLOSED - WINNERS ANNOUNCED  

Read more: Win tickets to The Wine Show