Helen Savage Wine Education Summer 2018

Helen, hard at work tasting French wines at London's National Theatre

Helen, third from the left, hard at work tasting French wines at London's National Theatre



As the cloud lowers over Slaley, summer still seems a very long way off. Spring hasn't yet plucked up courage to poke its head out into the damp, chilly air. Never mind, whatever the weather we have some tempting wine events here that we hope you'll enjoy, with still more in the pipeline.

As ever, dinner at Northern Counties is always a treat and consists of a starter or pud, plus a main course and coffee. Supper at Tynemouth is a simpler affair!

Please note: there's no Tynemouth tasting in May this year, but there will be one in August.

Helen and the team look forward to seeing you soon.

To book events at Northern Counties, Tynemouth and Slaley, please now contact Olwen by email: or by phone on 01434 676852. For other events, please book with the venue. Full details are given under each event.

Please book Lord Crewe Arms (01434 677100) and Eslington Villa (0191 487 6017) events directly with them.


Ten of the best Spanish red wines

Wednesday 9 May, 6.30 pm
Northern Counties Club

Tickets: £42.50

Helen has set a stiff but fascinating challenge for herself. Yes, there'll be Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Toro, Priorat and Bierzo, but what else?

The only rule is that each wine should be excellent and of international quality. It should be quite an evening, with lots of variety.

New Zealand Wine Dinner

Thursday 24 May, 7.00 for 7.30pm
Eslington Villa, Low Fell

Tickets: £42.50

New Zealand makes some of the world's most exciting Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, but there are now lots more exciting new flavours from an ever wider range of grape varieties. It's those we'll explore.

Please book this event directly with Eslington Villa: 0191 487 6017 or e-mail: .

A Fresh Taste of New Zealand

Friday 25 May, 7.00 for 7.30pm
Sip and Supper in the Gatehouse, Lord Crewe Arms, Blanchland

Tickets: £45

A taste of the stunning wines of New Zealand (at least eight different grape varieties!).

Helen will choose a selection of her favourite discoveries to enjoy with an intimate supper in the fabulous medieval Gatehouse.

Please book this event directly with The Lord Crewe Arms: 01434 677 100 or email .

A taste of South Africa

Tynemouth Wine Club: Friday 1 June, 7.30 pm
at Holy Saviour's Church Hall, Manor Road, Tynemouth

Tickets: £15.

A visit to the Cape is overdue. This is an opportunity to taste a wide range of the latest releases from South Africa and to re-assess what this hugely diverse and fascinating wine country has to offer.

For supper: Babotie - of course.

Jamie's (affordable) favourite wines

Monday 4 June, 6.30 pm
Northern Counties Club

Tickets: £42.50

What could be a more tempting proposition - except for Jamie's Favourites at any price?

Wonderful surprises and great flavour are guaranteed, with Jamie's canny, clever and honest take on the world of wine.

Alsace Masterclass

Wednesday 13 June, (evening)
Carruthers & Kent, Gosforth

Details are yet to be announced, but please contact the shop for more information: 0191 213 1818 or

Ten of the best French white wines

Thursday 21 June, 6.30 pm
Northern Counties Club

Tickets: £42.50

This could be even greater challenge than the selection of Spanish reds, but just as fascinating. What would your list include?

Yes, there'll be Burgundy and Alsace, the Loire (several bits of it perhaps), the Rhône Valley (north and south) and of course Bordeaux - dry and sweet.

What else? Come and find out.

Monday 25 June to Tuesday 3 July
Alsace Wine Holiday.

English Fizz

Thursday 5 July, 7.00 for 7.30pm
Eslington Villa, Low Fell

Tickets: £42.50

What could be better on summer evening than a glass of world-beating, fresh, fragrant English fizz? Come and taste what all the fuss is about.

Despite what you may have heard, it's not quite Champagne. Sometimes it's even better.

Please book this event directly with Eslington Villa: 0191 487 6017 or e-mail: .

The Rosé Revolution

Tynemouth Wine Club: Friday 6 July, 7.30 pm
at Holy Saviour's Church Hall, Manor Road, Tynemouth

Tickets: £15.

Rosé is no longer a way of getting rid of the grapes not good enough to make into decent red.

It's getting serious - and seriously tasty, with prices for the best wines going through the roof. This is a survey of the latest tasty trends - ideal for a July evening.

For supper: a luxury salade Niçoise.

Why Champagne needs to fear the Competition: some of the world's best fizz.

Thursday 19 July, 6.30 pm
Northern Counties Club

Tickets: £45

A stunning selection of tradition method wines from around the world will show just how good the competition to Champagne can be.

We'll taste some wonderful wines from Italy (Franciacorta, not Prosecco), New Zealand, the United States, Australia, Germany, France and, of course, England.

Perfect summer drinking

Tynemouth Wine Club: Friday 3 August, 7.30 pm
at Holy Saviour's Church Hall, Manor Road, Tynemouth

Tickets: £15.

Olwen: "So you've not thought what that might be yet?"

She may have a point, but Helen is going to have a lot of fun grabbing bottles from left right and centre, all perfect for a warm, summer's evening.

Dream on! We promise it'll be fun.

For supper: Coronation chicken.