Welcome to Deli Discussions; the place to go for insight on new products, new dishes and exciting things happening here at Shill’s. Our aim is to post here once a week for your reading enjoyment and give you a bit of insight into what we’re doing.

Domaine Ste Michelle Shop.JPG

Domaine Ste Michelle Brut

Why I believe you should try everything three times…


Taking trips to supplier wine tastings is a regular occurrence at this time of year. It gives us an opportunity to try our old favourites as well as discover some new and exciting wines that we’ve not had the pleasure of trying in the past, in order to pass onto you. At the beginning of March we popped over to Newcastle (on a train which left a little to be desired and came as a shock to Nick & Wendy; let’s just say it wasn’t quite of the Virgin Trains caliber!) to a small tasting put on by Enotria & Coe.

After arriving and doing an initial sweep of the room, we headed for the fizz! I have to say, this may be my favourite part of the whole tasting (closely followed by the sweet wines) as there’s so many great wines appearing which aren’t too ridiculous price wise. We’d tasted a couple which we already stock on our shelves just to get our taste buds ready, then at the far end of the table I spotted something new. A bottle of Domaine Ste Michelle Sparkling Brut. Now we already stock a couple of wines from Ste Michelle and absolutely love them, so our hopes were very high; maybe too high in fact. The first mouthful appeared to divide the group; neither Wendy or Fiona were overly keen, and it had myself and Nick questioning whether we liked it or not. Now if this was the reaction of the people trying to sell the wine, why would you buy it, right? Not wanting to waste time on this though ourselves, we emptied our glasses and without a second thought, continued with the tasting.

We like to come away from tastings with an idea of what we liked and a book full of notes about all the wines we tasted; we’ll then pool all of these together when back at work and get deciding on what needs to be on our shelves and what we can leave over in Newcastle. I was actually heading on holiday the next day so this would take place a little longer after the tasting than usual. I spent my time over in America, to celebrate my 21st birthday. To commemorate the day, my family and I  headed out to a fancy restaurant; as a birthday ALWAYS requires a bottle of fizz to toast the occasion, I grabbed for the drinks list to have a gander. Well what do you know, the first thing I see and the ONLY sparkling on the list, is the very bottle we’d tasted not 4 days previous over in Newcastle. Having not been overly excited about it on the day, I was really hoping that something was just holding us back at the tasting and that this bottle would change all perceptions I had. Well it’s safe to say, it being the only sparkling on the menu was definitely a sign, as it was incredible. A classic champagne method sparkling, with aromas of green apple and bright citrus; a classy, refined drink with persistent bubbles, perfect to toast any occasion.

This experience changed my whole opinion of the wine and I immediately messaged Wendy to add a case to the next order.

So, you might be asking how can you suddenly like a wine that you weren’t fussed about 4 days ago? Its all to do with your surroundings, time of day and even your state of mind. Not everyone is going to like the same things, that’s just a fact with everything in life. Someone’s opinion can often have you questioning your own, so it’s best to go back by yourself and taste again on days like Newcastle, just to confirm your previous thought. Having a bottle in the evening can also be a very different experience to having one at lunchtime. My point being, you can’t decide you don’t like something after having one mouthful, it’s not practical and downright a little bit silly & naïve; always try something three times, if after that you still hate it with all your might, you’re good to stop and move on.