Just arrived – the perfect gift for gourmets and gourmands.jpg

Just arrived – the perfect gift for gourmets and gourmands

Sponsored by: GRIFFIN BOOKSHOP

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Just arrived – the perfect gift for gourmets and gourmands – or anyone who loves their food and wine

There has always been a severe lack of books in English about Portuguese wines, so we are delighted to see the arrival of The Wine and Food Lover’s Guide to Portugal by Charles Metcalfe and Kathryn McWhirter. With a foreword by Oz Clarke, who has known Charles Metcalfe since their student days, this book offers superb coverage of the different areas of the country Clarke describes as “proud… idiosyncratic … unwilling to submit to international opinion” yet with a fine wine tradition all of its own.

Divided into the Vinho Regional regions, each chapter gives a wealth of information under the various headings of Wine, Eat, Explore, Sleep, listing personal recommendations for each area and each category. Extremely useful maps have also been included, giving the locations of the various wine producers, together with information on whether or not visitors are welcome and if pre-booking is required.

The pages are colour coded, making it easy to find the region you are looking for, and this lovely hardback is well illustrated, making it the perfect companion for a tour of any part of the country. What’s more, they invite comments and suggestions from readers, for incorporation into the next edition.

If you are just an armchair traveller, you will still be able to make up lists of what to look out for on your next shopping trip to stock your cellar.

Metcalfe is often to be seen on UK television on ITV’s This Morning programme and he was co-founder of WINE International magazine, as well as being the co-chairman of the International WINE Challenge.

He writes regularly for Blue Wine, the Portuguese magazine and is an authority on the wines of Portugal. Kathryn McWhirter wrote and edited the Which? Wine Guide, and was editor of Wine & Spirit magazine, among other things. You couldn’t be in better hands, it seems.

Attractively priced at 29.50 euros, this is one everyone should have.