The best wines are the ones shared with friends... and the ones showcased by a human winelist. Night was falling fast and flocks of starlings were wheeling in mesmerising spirals over the fields as the Mojo bandwagon rolled into a famous Cotswolds hamlet and a perfect chef’s storm. Tweed-clad locals, quaffing ale after a day’s shooting, were congregated around the entrance to the Bathurst Arms, North Cerney, when the Mojo sisters stepped into the log fire warmth of the bar.

On the surface everything seemed normal but then the restaurant seemed eerily empty. Just one table had been taken up by a couple who were eating with the studied concentration of royal food tasters checking for poison.

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Beef and wine. A succulent culinary combination treasured and celebrated by many cultures for centuries.  Whether it’s a wonderfully prepared sirloin steak with a glass of vintage red or a casserole with humbler cuts simmering in artisan wine; we Brits love it.

Normally we’d expect to find this mouth watering pairing on a menu. But Bohemian Mojo went on an expedition into the heart of wild Wales where they stumbled on a unique fusion of beef and wine in delightful combination.

It was a very pleasing match. It wasn’t to be found on an immaculate plate of food in a Michelin starred restaurant. No, it was on the side of a hill looking over the poetic ruins of a medieval Abbey in one of the most beautiful valleys of the British Isles.

This was the way it happened.

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The thought of breaking a journey on the British motorway system isn’t an enthralling one. In fact it can cause quite a few people to blow a gasket. The reason for that is a phenomenon called the Motorway Service Area. The UK highway network is dotted with Motorway Services and they are regulated by law because drivers need places where they can break-up long journeys a drink and a hot meal.

It’s argued Services are needed to keep motorists safe to drive. All well and good but whenever I visit one of these roadside malls I’m amazed how dreary these roadside malls can be; despite all the bright lights and hoarding. If only there were something more possible???

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As we walked up the steep track sunk between two moss covered banks Stephanie and I paused to look at the patchwork of trees and fields stretching across the valley.  

As we walked up the steep track sunk between two moss covered banks Stephanie and I paused to look at the patchwork of trees and fields stretching across the valley.   

We were on a quiet pilgrimage walking through an easterly wind stiff with cold sweeping.  Below us smoke curled from the chimneys of  the quintessentially English village of Ramsbury. In the distance its equally picturesque neighbour, Aldbourne, was hidden in the folds of a hill. 

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Stephanie and I were sitting in the convivial lounge bar of a pub looking at a fish menu from the heavens. 

I’d gallantly opted to let her have the seat with a harbour view which could also grace the portals of paradise.  

“Hake,” Stephanie grimaced as she named the fish half way down the list. On a bed of tomato and chorizo sauce no less.

“What’s wrong with hake?” I wondered, “I love hake!”

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Ambyth! Ambyth means “forever” in Welsh. Every now and then, it’s nice to find something that you hope will last forever. 

Take for example, a smooth and complex glass of biodynamically grown and harvested Grenache, Syrah, Mouvedre blend, so delightfully fermented in its terra cotta amphora urns that it just eases its way onto your palate, all suave and sophisticated. Fleeting, yes...but the desire for forever is there. 

That’s my experience of my first taste of one of Ambyth Estates’ vintages. There was something different going on in this wine and I wanted to know what it was. Was it the organic, the biodynamic, the terroir, what??

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