I don’t usually consider enthusing about a wine bar within the remit of this blog, but there are exceptions to every rule – and one is the new Vinoteca at King's Cross. I’ve visited the other Vinoteca, in Farringdon, Beak Street, Marble Arch and Chiswick, for tastings, drinks and dinner, and have always enjoyed them, so was curious to see what they have done at Kings Cross. Another reason possibly for not writing about Vinoteca is the lack of Languedoc wines on their list – they do have a couple, but only a couple, but there are so many other tempting things. It is always good to drink outside one’s comfort zone from time to time, and Vinoteca’s ever changing wine list by the glass certainly offered plenty of interest and temptation. So first we checked out a couple of glasses of fizz, their house champagne from Renard Barnier and the 209 Gran Reserva Cava from Juve y Camps.
A week earlier in the Farringdon Vinoteca, I did enjoy a glass of white Corbières from the coop of Rocbère, but on this occasion it was a delicious Santorini, a sappy mineral Assyrtiko from a new producer Karamalengos that tempted. The manager at the King's Cross Vinoteca, Gus Gluck has worked a vintage on Santorini, and is particularly enthusiastic about the island’s wines. And then we tried David Ramonteu’s Dada. David’s father, Henri at Domaine Cauhape was one of the pioneers of the renaissance of Jurançon, and David went off to New Zealand, for a stage, and met a girl, and is currently making wine there. He has no vineyards, but buys grapes, and for Dada they are an intriguing blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Viognier and Gewürztraminer. Even though Viognier and Gewurztraminer are pretty powerful flavours, neither variety dominated the blend.
Vinoteca is open from 7 a.m on weekdays, and 9 a.m. at the weekend, so it occured to my tasting / drinking buddy that if you were travelling to the Languedoc by train, you could set yourself up for the journey with breakfast, as Vinoteca is very conveniently situated for the Eurostar, and in their small shop, which replicates the wine bar list, you could buy a bottle to go with the picnic lunch that you might enjoy en route. It is almost tempts me to take the train rather than the plane!