Advice: Sir Lunchalot


Sir Lunchalot, Berry Bros. & Rudd

The first in a series of our new advice column, Berry Bros. & Rudd in-house expert Sir Lunchalot answers all your wine-related questions…

Dear Sir,

I’ve recently been invited to a rather smart dinner party, to which, it would be appropriate to take a bottle (or two). Should I turn up with something special in the hope that my hosts will open it there and then, or would it be more prudent to offer up something I won’t be too distraught to see still sitting in the EuroCave when I visit next time?

Ah, the age-old question… how do you pass off a petrol station “three for a tenner” as a Saturday night treat when your Instagram suggests you drink Montrachet like it’s water? Well, first of all there should be no conundrum about taking a good bottle anywhere, ever. That’s a given… but of course it doesn’t mean it needs to be expensive.

My advice would be take with you a big bottle of something interesting, tasty and good value. A magnum of 2004 Potensac would hit the spot for the more “tweed” affair, whereas a Thibault Liger-Belair, Moulin a Vent, Vignes Centenaires in the same format would knock the socks off any group of bearded, skinny-jean wearers. Both of these could use plenty of air, so if you’re concerned it might sit next to their thirty-year-old microwave until Betamax is back in fashion, give it a little double decant before you leave the house. This shows you’re serious about what you’re doing, you’ve paid careful attention to what you’re taking and how best to serve it. It is then simply, gross negligence to leave it overlooked.

If, after all this effort, you are three large Brandies down and there is no sign of your beloved, then consider your opening gambit on arrival… A firm handshake (always) and something like “Hello Colin. I’ve decanted this bottle for us to have with dinner. I thought you’d find it interesting. [hushed tone] It came from Berry Bros. & Rudd, don’t you know. [Nudge/Wink]”. Then you can rest easy that Colin knows the score, after all – he wants to be invited back… he follows you on Instagram.