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Celebrate this sparkling spring

Hello,

Rose Revolution

Hope you're having a great November! Summer is nearly here, and yes, the silly season. Christmas and New Year are just around the corner. I read somewhere recently that 70% of all Champagne consumed in Australia is drunk between November and January, so it's time to get those flutes filled!

I hope you are one of the lucky ones celebrating, or simply enjoying this glorious end-of-spring weather. You might also like to try out a rosé in the annual Rosé Revolution, which kicks off on Wednesday November 14th with tastings around Australia.

Check out these and other fun wine events near you below and on our wine and food events calendar, and meanwhile catch up with the latest in wine news, reviews and more below.

We are welcoming a new wine writer onboard, Rocco Esposito, who as some of you may know is Wine Director at Vue de Monde in Melbourne, one of Australia's most awarded restaurants.

Rocco will be writing about some of the amazing wines he gets to see in this fabulous job, starting with some Spanish secrets »

Closer to home we look at who won the Jimmy Watson Trophy, our annual Top Dozen wine books for 2012 and heaps more including some great new giveaways, including two being drawn tomorrow, so please scroll down, and relax, enjoy and be inspired!

Wine: our Top 12 wine books of 2012, some secret gems, news and reviews

A Vineyard in My Glass, by Gerald Asher

I recently read the last editorial from Guy Woodward of the wine magazine Decanter. As well as being complimentary about Australian wines, it's a great summary of changes over the past five years, some good (the introduction of screwcaps) some not so good (the elevation of some wines to stratospheric prices).

One point he made really resonated: that UK wine drinkers remain divided between "someone who sees wine as a drink to enliven an evening, and someone who sees it as the major focus of an evening". 

Perhaps I'm a swinging voter, or maybe with Australia's more casual lifestyle there is less of a divide here, but sometimes I'm in the latter, and other times I'm more focussed on the friends, the fun and the food, and wine is the lubricant, not the main event. What about you? I'd be interested in your thoughts on where you stand (please let me know what country you are in, too).
 

The best wine books of the past year

Our annual Top 12 Wine Books of 2012 provide great gift inspiration for the festive season. As with last year, it’s a mixed dozen: there’s lots of international wine flavour, the reliably good Australian wine guides plus local colour and spice! Check out our pick of the best of wine writing for 2012 »
 

Ribeira Sacra Vineyards, Spain

Introducing our new wine writer!

Rocco Esposito, Wine Director of Vue de Monde, one of Australia's best restaurants, tells us how he fell in love with some secret gems of Ribeira, Spain, and what to look for in some of these 'new' varieties.
 

Wine clippings:

 
 More on wine at VisitVineyards.com/wine » 

 

Wine travel – with some art

Ballarat Art Gallery - Maund Telopea Speciosissima
Best's Wines – near Ararat on the Western Highway between Melbourne and Adelaide – have certainly put the Great Western region back on the wine map. They have a memorable (dare I say, authentic) cellar door, where the welcome is warm. [And if you are an auto club member from anywhere, enjoy 10% off most wines and Best's cellar door merchandise].
 
 
If you're heading west from Melbourne, first stop in Ballarat, Victoria's third largest city and home to the Eureka flag.  Ballarat has a rich history built on the gold-rush era, but the food is increasingly contemporary – check out Lydiard Wine Bar where Head Chef Damien Jones cut his teeth at Nahm and Bibendum in London, Darley Street Thai in Sydney and Circa in Melbourne. More on Ballarat including where to find the best coffee »
 
 
If you go before the 2nd December, drop into regional Australia's oldest Art Gallery, where there is a stunning exhibition Capturing Flora: 300 Years of Australian Botanic Art. Anyone even vaguely interested in native flora or gardening should see this never-to-be-repeated exhibition, or if you really can't make it, you can buy the book over the the phone »
 
Further west near Horsham you reach the Grampians, named after a Scottish mountain range and just as dramatic. Famed for its rockclimbing, scenery and walking, it's also home to some great wine and food producers, restaurants and accommodations »
 
 
 For more wine travel ideas: VisitVineyards.com/tours » 

 

Wine events to enjoy

Margaret River Gourmet Escape weekend

The big event this month is set against the stunning backdrop of Western Australia’s remarkable South West region.

The Margaret River Gourmet Escape invites you to join global culinary stars Heston Blumenthal, René Redzepi, wine expert Lisa Perotti-Brown, MasterChef judge and Chef Matt Moran and over twenty other wine and food experts for the ultimate in food and wine adventures, from 22 - 25 Nov »

  • NSW: Sculpture in the Vineyards, Wollombi Valley Wine Trail, Hunter Valley, 3 Nov - 3 Dec. Wine and fabulous sculpture »
  • SA: Hutt Street Centre’s major fundraiser for the homeless, The Big Picnic at Touch Wine, Adelaide, on Sunday 11 Nov »
 Find more events near you: VisitVineyards.com/calendar » 

 

 Read more about what's on: VisitVineyards.com/events » 

 

Event organisers and marketers, don't forget you can list your food and wine events on our calendar FREE. Simply go to VisitVineyards.com/MyAccount and enter your event details.

 

Sparkling prizes to be won

The French film You Will Be My Son
It's certainly the month for all that sparkles and we have some lovely, bubbly prizes to be won, but first we have two competitions for double passes being drawn tomorrow!
 

Now, back to the sparkling!

The History of Australian Wine by Max Allen

From wine to books and food:
 
 More competitions:VisitVineyards.com/win » 

 

 Are you a winner?Find out now » 

 

All new subscriber offers just for you

Candles for community
Add some joy, sparkle or some go anywhere Govino glasses to your festive season with these extra special offers.
 
  • Candles for Community: spread your festive joy to others with these beautiful 100% soy candles with spice and soul, created to raise funds for the Sunrise Childrens' Villages in Cambodia.

    This Christmas you can enjoy the gentle fragrance yourself or give them as a beautifully packaged gift and give twice!  Order before 20th November and receive a lovely bonus candle »
 

 

Keen to enjoy some wines for Christmas?

Bests Wines - Ararat, Grampians, Victoria.

VisitVineyards.com has been approached by a wine company with a great new idea in selling wine. After the huge response to our survey earlier in the year, we figure you're thirsty, and soon we'll bring you a range of wines you've told us you like.

It's all under wraps for now, but stay tuned, and look out for some great value, interesting wines, plus your food travel newsletter in two weeks' time.

Have a great November from Robyn, Kerry, Lara, Andrew and the rest of the VisitVineyards.com and Winepros Archive team.

(Read more about us here if you like »)

Missed your last newsletter? (October food edition)  Catch up here »
 
 
* Wine samples for review and publication can be sent to
VisitVineyards.com, PO Box 488, North Hobart. Tas. 7002.
Please include price information and tasting notes, and food matching suggestions and recipes if you wish.
 
** If you operate a vineyard, winery or restaurant, or grow, make or sell regional food produce in South Australia and would like to find out how you can be involved in our forthcoming program with RAA, please email Lara at lara@visitvineyards.com for more info.