Pol Roger Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill 2006

Top Five Champagne Stories From 5 Years Of Quill & Pad: Cheers And Happy New Year

For many watch enthusiasts, it is probably not a stretch to say that fine timepieces are often enjoyed with a fine glass of bubbly. And since Quill & Pad acquired an expert writer in this field in 2017 – Ken Gargett from Australia – we can happily recommend some of the best tipples in existence. Here are five very fine champagnes recommended just in time for the new year!

Tenuta San Guido Sassicaia 2015

Tenuta San Guido Sassicaia 2015 Rates 97/100: But How Does It Compare With The 1985 Vintage, One Of The Greatest Wines Of The Last Century?

Tenuta San Guido’s 2015 Sassicaia was a warm vintage but an exceptional one, and that is reflected in the wine. It is considered to have similarities with the sensational vintage conditions of 1985, which Ken Gargett has tasted twice and has rated 100 points standing on its head both times. Sassicaia is one of the most famous of all wines of Italy, and often one of the country’s very best.

Flor de Cana 25-Year-Old Nicaraguan Rum

Flor de Caña 25-Year-Old Rum: The Volcanic Spirit Of Nicaragua

Flor de Caña is not the only rum producer from Nicaragua but it dominates in a massive way. Ken Gargett rates its 25-year-old, single-estate rum 98/100 and explains why, while providing some interesting history.

Cullen Vanya Margaret River cabernet sauvignon

Cullen Vanya Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon: Legitimate Claims On The Title ‘Most Elegant Wine Ever Made In Australia’

The price of $500 for a bottle of Cullen’s Vanya sets a new level for Australia’s Margaret River, but in international terms it is more than reasonable. But is it worth this money? Ken Gargett investigates.

Trinidad La Trova Cuban Cigars

Trinidad La Trova Cuban Cigars: Exceptional In Every Way

Ken Gargett believes that the recently released La Trova is challenging the superb Fundadores cigar as the benchmark for Trinidad.

Roam Napa Sleeping Lady Cabernet Sauvignon 2015: Exuberant First Wine By New Napa Valley Label

For wine lovers, there is not much more exciting than being in on the ground floor for the release of a new label, especially one that aspires to the highest quality. Being of severely limited quantities adds a tiny bit of a thrill as well. With all that in mind, Ken Gargett predicts that the new Roam Napa Sleeping Lady Cabernet Sauvignon and its first vintage, 2015, will be a welcome addition to the ranks of cracking Cabernet.

Louis Roederer Cristal 2008

Louis Roederer Cristal 2008: Supreme Elegance And Ethereal Grace

Individual champagnes rarely seem to attract the pre-release anticipation that we sometimes see with other wines. Ken Gargett thinks that perhaps the 1996 Krug was the last release that really generated serious excitement before it hit the market and he doubts that any champagne has created such interest since then – until we come to the 2008 Louis Roederer Cristal.

Penfolds Grange 2014

Penfolds Grange 2014: Meeting High Expectations, Plus The Fascinating History Of Australia’s Best Wine (It Began As A Failure)

Even though Penfolds releases all its top wines – the “Penfolds Collection” – at the same time, eyes of wine lovers around the world are always focused on one wine: Grange! Here Ken Gargett reviews the 2014 Grange. Plus he shares the early history of Grange and explains how the first tastings were a complete flop in quite colorful language.

Serra de Estrela cheese

Serra De Estrela Cheese: Rich, Ripe, And Full Of Intense, Tangy Flavors

Ken Gargett first encountered Serra de Estrela in Oporto at a lunch. He thinks, however, that it has not received its dues outside Portugal and can only assume that is because no one seems to associate cheese with that country – a gross oversight, which he rectifies here..

Mornington Peninsula vineyards

Mornington Peninsula Wines Of Australia: Majestic Victorian Burgundies With Equally Majestic Views

Most good wine regions in Australia are delightfully scenic. But few are quite as picturesque as the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, Australia. Located just to the south of Melbourne, Australia’s second largest city, it is easy to visit for a day trip, but Ken Gargett thinks it’s much more fun to stay a few days.