• What to drink

    It's funny to think, there was a time not so long ago when rosé wine was the pretty drink you fell in love with on summer holiday.  But like all summer flings, the romance would end abruptly come September.

    The rule was, like the dubious beach-bum boyfriend, you didn't bring the plonkish liquid back to the city.  Because like the skimpy, tasseled dress from the market, the plaited fluoro bracelet or the painting bought at the side of the port - rosé just didn't travel.

    But things have changed so much, that Sam Heathcote, sommelier at Alain Ducasse's new restaurant Rivea (with a menu inspired by the food markets of Italy and Provence) has created an entire Rosé Masterclass.  Aged just 32, Heathcote a rising star from Melbourne who was plucked by Ducasse to head up the imbibing department at Rivea, is so impressed with the new wave of pink wines that he has created a tasting of 5 different wines including the sparkling 'Atmosphere'. 

    "On the whole people aren't familiar with how varied and complex rosé wines are, and how different they can be in colour, density and richness," explains Heathcote.  "Pairing Chef Ducasse's 'Cuisine de Soleil' with wines specifically from the South of France is a great match." 

    So the new rule is, return from your holiday with the best quality rosé in bucket loads.  But don't think for a minute that racy market dress, sail boat painting or dodgy bloke works back in London.

    www.rivealondon.com

    Rivea at The Bulgari Hotel offered all Vanity Fair A-List subscribers the chance to win a unique private rosé masterclass for four people with sommelier Sam Heathcote followed by dinner for four people at Rivea paired with rosé wines (total worth, approximately £650). Don't miss out on future offers, sign up to the A-List.

  • Where to go

     

    "We're going to this beautiful place for dinner," said my friends as I arrived in Mallorca.  Surely not, I thought staring at the high rises and acres of light pollution that makes up the coast of Palma. 

    But we sailed just a few bays along, and there was the pretty rock face of hotel Cap Rocat. Up the steep steps cut into the rock and to the Sea Club - an open air restaurant with tables dotted along the cliffs.

    A short stroll up to the former military fortress with its drawbridge and now empty moat, that opened as a hotel in 2010.  We watched as the setting sun kissed the terracotta walls, making the whole place blush apricot pink.  Up to the gastronomic Fortress restaurant with breathtaking views across the sea and you can't help but wonder exactly where all 24 very private suites are hidden.  This year the hotel opened the new Suite del Mar, with its own infinity pool tucked in a herb garden beside the private beach.

    As the moon rose, we ate a perfect dinner of sea bass cooked in traditional Mallorcan firewood, calamari and plates of Iberico ham.  But dinner was a teaser.  I haven't had my fill of this low key, unflashy, elegant, non-champagne spraying place.  So Cap Rocat's on the wish list…. Maybe even a weekend in autumn, when the sea's still warm after a summer of hot sun. 

    www.caprocat.com

  • What to buy

    I've noticed the men in my life often circle me like a pack of wolves when I slip on a Chinti & Parker sweater.

    Whether it's a playfully coloured elbow patch, a riff on a Breton stripe or a navy sweater broken with a pop-coloured breast pocket they all seem to garner the same hungry looks.  But as of this season the wolves can stop pawing at my 'garms'… as Chinti & Parker launch their first menswear collection.

    Cashmere, lambswool and merino wool sweaters and cardigans in autumnal base tones with hits of colour and detail using the best of the best yarns from upstanding sources. 

    The pack are licking their chops, ready for winter.

    www.chintiandparker.com