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Just what is it, that causes even the most robust of hearts, to flee in the face of a fizzy red? 

Is it the frothy, foaming, cherryade top? The soft, squishy, whiff of summer pudding? the slightly edgy tannic grip? or simply just a fear of the unknown, together with a lily- livered aversion to risk taking.

Back in the day, when be-pinstriped dinosaurs roamed the earth, Sparkling Shirazwas a hard sell, hand sell, kind of wine – it still is – but that’s not because of it’s quality.

I first tried Sparkling Shiraz, in the Barossa at Rockford – early in the morning, with a large plate of bacon and eggs – and if that’s not swashbuckling enough, there’s nothing madder, badder and more deliciously dangerous with a barbie – not the doll!

In a wine world awash with the dull predictability of poor quality prosecco and pinot grigio, a sense of adventure is sorely lacking.

After a swim across the HellespontGeorge Gordon, Lord Byron – ‘Roll on, thou deep and dark blue ocean – roll’ – and his old mucker Edward John Trelawny, would quaff foaming tankards of fizzy red  – because as Mary Shelley once said ‘Trelawny lives with the living, and we live with the dead’

Fill your fist with a large one, and sing ….

“Shall Trelawny live? Or shall Trelawny die? Here’s twenty thousand Cornishmen will know the reason why!”

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