Message in a bottle: the ultimate world travel souvenir

Fact: flight attendants love wine. Why wouldn’t they? The world seems to be transforming into one colossal vineyard, and almost every destination has its signature winery to be visited by curious palates. Whether it’s Argentina, South Africa, France or Hungary, one of the quickest and most portable snapshots of a country can be sampled via a bottle of its wine, a way of stoppering climate, culture and flavour in a portable, duty-free package. So sit back, relax, and read some travel quotes to inspire your wanderlust while you sip on some of these tasty musts!

 

Red and white wine

New Zealand Sauvignon

Fresh, vibrant and sparky, this rambunctious white wine displays attention-grabbing aromas of freshly crushed gooseberry, ripe melon and lush tropical fruits. It calls to mind the vibrant green mountains of the country’s Southern Alps, or a florist’s bouquet crammed with giant, gaudy blooms. Enjoy this wine with a freshly seared lamb chop, garnished with a sprig of mint and some sautéed potatoes, this New Zealand wine perfectly embodies the country’s friendly kiwi attitude and winsome spirit.

Italian Pinot Grigio

Light-bodied and delicate, this cool white can evoke powerful memories of a Tuscan sunset, the energy of Piazza Navona or the classic elegance of a sparkling Italian fountain. Generally pale and acidic, Pinot Grigio enthuses fragrant yellow fruit aromas; think freshly sliced pear, lemon rind and ripe apple. An ideal accompaniment to fish antipasti on a summer’s eve, this elegant tipple is like bottled al fresco panache.

French Merlot

A truly potent, lip-smacking quaff that dyes its presence on skin like ink on an illicit love letter, a good glass of Merlot is forceful, ripe and redolent of warm, spicy  aromas; lacing the atmosphere with traces of pepper, spice and tobacco. Indulge with masculine red meat dishes. Game, steak and lamb are all suitably elegant partners for this sultry French affair, sans heartache.

Californian Cabernet Sauvignon

Healthy, glossy and handsome, this king of wines has gotten buff thanks to its sojourn in the new world.  Like the persecuted movie stars that throng the red carpets in LA, this luxuriant, boozy red is the A-lister of the wine world. When you identify a flavour that’s rich as a blockbuster franchise and bitter as Gloria Swanson in Sunset Boulevard; you’ll know you’ve found the one.

When appraising wine on your next trip, it helps to allow your imagination to run riot and to fully engage your senses in the experience, whether you’re sipping a frivolous glass of Spumante or ruminating over a robust Rioja. Just like a distinct aroma, or a familiar melody, a good wine has that special power to transport you back to a place and an experience, long after you’ve touched down on home soil.

Author bio: Louise Wright, English & Lit grad whose love of travel and trying new things led her to taking to the skies as a Flight Service Manager. Lover of all things European, especially the food.