The RRs from Virginia, USA, were touring grand English gardens and we picked them up from Blenheim (Nearly a Snafu; the adjacent town of Woodstock has TWO gates to the Blenheim estate.) I had grandiose plans which included a tour of mid-Wales but geography and a drum-beat deadline reduced this to a trot round Hereford Cathedral (the chained library – both RRs are librarians – and Mappa Mundi were closed) followed by tea chez da Ponte, a meal few of our acquaintances, or we ourselves, have experienced.
RR has a highly individual blogging voice which is heard all too rarely, knows about technology, books and much more, and years ago noticed Works Well via a chance reference to the American composer Charles Ives. In the end, I suppose, it was conversation that mattered; raising our voices over that of the satnav lady he and I set the world to rights as did Mrs RR and Mrs LdP behind us.
The bottle was a kind memento of their visit and a revelation that Virginia has gone in for viticulture. The grape, petit verdot, is a late ripener in Europe and tends to be added in small amounts for extra tannin, colour and flavour, especially with cab sauv. However it ripens more reliably in the New World and emerges as a wine in its own right.