March 6, 2013

I am sorry to say that this isn’t the launch of my latest wine course, or book club for that matter. It is the name of a new book, one that I wish I had written, by the very talented Helen McGinn. You can find extracts of it all over the internet and she has a blogspot of the same name too. Helen’s musings are most entertaining, but I understand that she thinks mothers are “deluding ourselves that red wine is “healthy” and are in denial about what constitutes a unit of alcohol”.

I am not sure that there is any delusion, you can, if you like, check out such facts on I have to warn you though that it does make for depressing reading for those calorie-counters amongst us. Armed with information from the site we can all make our own choices about a glass of champagne vs a chocolate digestive or indeed a 175ml medium (seriously?) glass of wine vs a small bag of crisps. Apparently a large glass of wine is 250mls; that equates to a third of a bottle which in my book is two glasses, say no more….. Mathematicians will be happy to find the formula enabling them to work out the exact calorific content of a favourite tipple.

The only area that I can really find fault with Helen is that apparently she eschews arcane tasting notes (agree) and technical discussions about “terroir”; now this upsets me. I can waffle on for hours on this subject and I intend to continue to do so, more light-heartedly in the future if you wish, I only have to hope she is wrong and that you will still welcome the odd reference embedded deep in this column and wherever else I can put it!!

I have reproduced Kate Spicer’s review of the book, which was published in The Times recently, on my website for your enjoyment. She lists Helen’s guide to different “types” of drinker, perhaps you are a #social networking drinker or indeed a drunkorexic (so, who cares?) and apparently some ladies expect Hubby to serve her a glass of wine at 6pm. Do please try to read it. I see something of everyone in her guide and thank goodness for the light-heartedness of it all. I am very much looking forward to reading it in its entirety.

By all accounts wine is the female palliative medicine of choice, everything in moderation as they say, Happy Knackered Mother’s Day this month (to any Brits) – is the sun over that yard-arm yet?.


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