A taste of what's what in recent London food and drink news:
For the wine snob or champers sophisticate who has everything, France's oldest Champagne house, Ruinart, has launched a new “Interpretation” gift box. Available at Harrods Harvey Nichols and Selfridges for around £85, the box (replete with a half bottle of Ruinart Blanc de Blancs) comes with eight small bottles of fragrances which comprise the main aromas of this Champagne's bouquet. Such a set could provide a fun night of sniffing and sipping and may help with your conversation starters for the social drinker.
South of the river, the wine's flowing just as freely. Streatham based wine distributors Hix & Buck have re-launched last year’s popular pop-up Parisian Wine Bar in Streatham. It’ll be open on select evenings until the 19th March, serving bread, cheese and charcuterie along with a bubbly-fuelled Saturday brunch. Check the dates and details on their website.
Rather have a pint instead but on the go and not sure exactly where? Our friends at Fancyapint have just launched a new iPhone app enabling users to explore their database of more than 3,500 pub reviews and view them on a map. It's cheap as a packet of crisps too at only 59p!
To accompany whatever you're drinking, why not consider Trishna restaurant's “Not Your Average Curry Night – Thinking Outside the Bottle” monthly pairing events to help you learn to competently match fine wine, beer and cider with Indian cuisine (south coastal Indian yummies in the case of Trishna). The sessions cost £45. Visit www.trishnalondon.com for details.
In more resto news, the team behind Polpo and Polpetto this week launched their latest venture – Spuntino. Breathing life into a former Indian restaurant on Soho’s seedy Rupert Street, the spot offers similar Italian small plates at reasonable prices. Helen Graves’ review on the Food Stories blog has certainly made us want to go.
And finally … for those of you who haven’t already, we recommend you check out the Juniper Society at Graphic Bar. So long as you like gin, that is. We had a blast tasting the Gin Mare brand there on Monday, and they’ve plenty more events coming up. Free G&T on arrival, if that swings it for ya. See their Facebook Group for details.
By Chris Osburn and Ben Norum