Destinations

 Natural beauty, innovation, design and sustainability are all part of the story of Waiheke Island’s newest winery - Batch Winery, producing syrah, cabernet sauvignon, pinot gris, chardonnay, flora and blanc de blancs.

Production takes advantage of natural gravity flow to minimise mechanical intervention, and includes innovations such as the translucent wall-panels, that capture the day light outside providing diffused natural light to the working interior and minimising solar heat. 

Winery features include a large humidity controlled barrel hall built into the hillside, a temperature-controlled bond store, and a sophisticated bottling system catering for corks and screwcaps. Cleanliness is maintained with steam sanitation removing need for chemical cleaners, all waste is composted on site. The winery is open to the public and tours/tasting days are available. www.BatchWinery.com

The 2013–14 edition of the Outaouais Gourmet Way features even more local products such as Vignoble du Clos Baillie’s new red ice wine and rosé cider, and Coronation Hall Cider Mills’ fresh apple cider and apple cider doughnuts.Outaouais Gourmet Way  

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The De Kroon (The Crown) Brewery is an exceptional combination of science, brewing art, gastronomy and tourism. It is also a creative family business, in a historical setting where specialty beers are conceived, brewed, monitored and consumed.

De Kroon opened in 1897, and closed its doors in 1972. The German army took away the brewery’s copper brewing kettles during the First World War but the 1920’s brew house still retains its direct-fired boiling kettle, and a coolship.

The brewery concept is to gradually expand the range of beers and activities available. Passionate beer lovers will be able to visit this renovated brewery to include tasting sessions conducted by experts plus guided tours of the old brewery.  www.brouwerijdekroon.be

Brent Cross is destined to become a must-visit site for foodys when its food market opens on 26 April. The market will take over the area by John Lewis in the centre's car park every Friday and Saturday, throughout the year. More than 200 traders from across the UK applied to become a part of it and the organisers have narrowed it down to the best 50 to create the ultimate foody experience for North London, offering delicacies from around the world as well as locally sourced meats, dairy products, vegetables and treats. www.brentcross.co.uk

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Craft Beers have been growing in popularity over the last couple of years and Liberation Brewery in Jersey is proving to be at the forefront of this trend with the launch of its own version, Liberation Blonde Craft Beer. This sparkling blonde is the Longueville-based brewery's first foray into carbonated beer for a long time.

Blonde sparkling beers are light and refreshing, chilled and served straight from the keg, with a close resemblance to lager but with all the flavour of real ale.

Liberation Brewery's Blonde is created using lager malt, which provides a hint of biscuit with an aromatic citric hop arising from the blend of Saaz and Hallertau varieties and is available at the St Mary's Country Inn and The Bar and Canteen. www.liberationgroup.com

The Jura distillery is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a packed programme of live music performances, interactive whisky tastings and storytelling sessions at this year's Jura Whisky Festival, an established part of 'Fèis Ìle' (Islay Whisky Festival).

As part of the two day festival 29 and 30 May, visitors to Jura will be able to hear about the rebirth of Jura distillery first hand and experience some of the finest malts Jura has to offer, including: Delme Evans Select, Festival Bottling 2013, Turas Mara and a rather unusual 39 ¾ year old whisky!

Just over 500 bottles of the Delme Evans Select were released in 1988 and it completely sold out. But the distillery held some bottles back, and visitors to this year's festival will be the last in the world to enjoy this special spirit which was created using the very stills designed by the man whose name is on the bottle. www.isleofjura.com

The Cheese Pantry at Connage, has opened a new 'Cheese Room' displaying whole cheeses which are hand cut and wrapped for individual customers. Not only can visitors buy Connage's own range of multi award-winning, organic cheeses but also choose from an excellent selection of European and UK artisan cheeses. Additionally, a selection of gifts such as high quality boards, slates and knives, luxury chutneys and biscuits for cheese are available.

The Dairy also holds Cheese and Wine Evenings, Cheese Tastings and Talks and there is a viewing window to watch the cheese being made at the four-star Visit Scotland shop. Cheese-making classes will also soon be available to individuals and groups, giving guests the chance to take home a kit from the Big Cheese Company enabling them to make up their own year's supply of cheese! www.connage.co.uk

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Street Kitchen founders Jun Tanaka and Mark Jankel have launched their third site on Shoreditch High Street. Following the success of their other locations at Broadgate Circle and Battersea, Jun and Mark will be serving restaurant quality, seasonal food, from their trademark vintage Airstream for lunch and dinner throughout the week.

Situated in the former Hackney House and offering a covered seating area, the East London venue will be open from midday until 4pm Tuesday to Sunday, providing a selection of foody delights using sustainable produce, sourced directly from British farms. The menu will also include their best-selling crispy chicken salad with warm crushed potatoes, bacon, croutons, pickled red onions and Winchy mayo.

Tuesday through to Saturday, the Airstream will be open from 5pm until 8pm serving award winning burgers and wings. The location and fast service make this site the perfect pit-stop for those finishing work and seeking a great value meal before continuing their night out in Shoreditch. www.streetkitchen.co.uk

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Steak & Lobster @ Alto located at the multi-award winning Radisson Blu Edwardian, Free Trade Hall Manchester hotel, is spearheading a 'Retro Revival'. Over the next few months the city-centre restaurant is asking its customers to suggest their all-time favourite retro puddings to form its new dessert menu. The plan to bring back traditional, nostalgic treats is a result of Alto's best-selling dessert, the Knickerbocker Glory!

To be part of Steak & Lobster @ Alto's 'Retro Dessert Revival' just head in to the restaurant and put forward your dessert suggestion. Forget infused sorbets and posh panna cotta this is all about the return of the likes of Jam Roly Poly, Artic Roll and Black Forest Gateau!

Steak & Lobster @ Alto is known for its Steak & Lobster dining concept: no menu, just a simple choice between the eponymous mains. Both come with a bowl of fries and a dressed salad at a set price of £15. www.steakandlobsteratalto.com

Singapore restaurants struck gold when celebrated chefs and academy members recently visited Singapore for the announcement of Asia's 50 Best Restaurants. Amongst the accolades were an impressive number of restaurants from the host-city, with Restaurant Andre awarded 5th place for its delicate southern French cuisine, and 9th placing Iggy's was heaped with praise for its fresh Japanese flavours. A brand new award for the best pastry-chef deservedly went to Asia's undisputed champion of 2am desserts, Janice Wong, a favourite amongst sweet-toothed Singaporeans. www.yoursingapore.com

Monte Rei Golf & Country Club gourmet food experiences: Monte Rei Golf and Country Club, set in the unspoiled eastern Algarve has launched new fishing and foody experiences for guests staying in its villa properties over the spring and summer months. Traditionally viewed as a luxury golf resort, Monte Rei is fast becoming a key destination for foodys with its varied selection of restaurants and gastronomic activities. These excursions aim to offer guests a taste of the many culinary delights that the region has to offer. www.monte-rei.com

The Portuguese archipelago of Madeira has a number of mobile apps for visitors wishing to explore the islands by themselves. The 'WalkMe Madeira' application is a must-have for visitors who want to explore the multiple treks and walks that Madeira offers. Whilst the 'Portugal Acessível' app is aimed at persons with reduced mobility and suggests accessible itineraries as well as suitable hotels and restaurants. www.visitmadeira.pt

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Apart from its stunning picture collection the Musee d'Orsay offers a choice of several places to eat - a number of cafes as well as its famous, elegant Restaurant.

Recently the Restaurant hosted a special event in conjunction with the International Training Centre Offering Continuing Education in the Catering Trade. Trainee chefs were asked to create starters, main courses and desserts inspired by the museum's paintings. The winners of the competition have the honour of having their dishes presented on the Restaurant menu during the next few months.

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Cité Europe's spring fair commences on Good Friday and runs until 13 April. It's a celebration of French life, food & drink, with many of the stores offering special deals, promotions and themed events throughout the fortnight.

The on-site Carrefour hypermarket is hosting a number of activities, including a tasting of Brittany charcuterie and cheddar cheese on 28, 29 & 30 March. There will also be tastings in store by wine producers from the regions of Muscadet and Chateauneuf du Pape. Other events include: Shrimp cooking, food tastings and shows.

There are plenty of bargains to be snapped up too with some 'buy one get one free offers' on Cotes du Rhone reduced to €1.28, normally €2.55, and their French Country wine collection is down to €2.48, normally €4.95 per bottle.

"Terre de Boissons" the new wine superstore, is also hosting a wine tasting event on 29 March. They have a great deal on a light and crisp Pinot Grigio – 'buy one get one free', reducing the price to €1.50 per bottle. Within the store you'll find a vast range of wine from around the world, plus Champagne and a wide selection of beers, many of which are available for tasting.

The eating area, Cité Gourmand, features a choice of 15 restaurants, including fast-food outlets, cafés and restaurants. Next door, the Channel Outlet store, L'Usine, has top branded goods at heavily discounted prices.

Cité Europe is the largest shopping Centre in Northern France, offering a wide assortment of fashion goods, beauty, gifts and accessories amongst its 140 shops. More information can be found at www.citeeurope.com

It is a five minute drive from Calais at Junction 41 off the A16 Motorway, next to the Eurotunnel Terminal. Parking is free. The shopping centre is open Monday – Saturday from 10am – 8pm (9pm on Friday).

This year Yakima Valley grape growers and winemakers are celebrating their 30th anniversary as part of the first American Viticultural Area (AVA) established in the Pacific Northwest.

Spring Barrel tasting 26 – 28 April offers a chance to taste and purchase some of the best wines in the State.  A visit this weekend allows visitors to sample yet-unfinished wines from the barrel. The Washington wine industry is a collection of creative people drawn from many different backgrounds and origins. The grape growers and winemakers live and work in small towns, where restored old homes, beautiful barns, and converted mills truly reflect the modern American west.

www.visitseattle.org and www.experiencewa.com

Long Island in New York State has been celebrated in Wine Enthusiast Magazine after being featured in the top ten wine destinations for 2013.

Fringed by sandy beaches and bustling fishing villages, rolling farmland and forest sanctuaries, Long Island wine country is unlike any region in America. The North and South Forks of the island, collectively known as the East End, extend into the Atlantic Ocean like a two-tined fork, with picturesque Shelter Island wedged between the spears.

Just a two-hour drive from Manhattan, it's a unique amalgam of metropolitan influences against a core of hearty, agricultural tradition. Family-owned farms, artisanal food producers and small-production winemakers mingle amongst Hamptonites, sharing the wealth of the region's land, sea and vines

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Top Houston Chefs Expose Houston's Foodie Secrets: The city's top chefs - who are just as interested in showcasing Houston's mom and pop restaurants than their own - continue their mission to introduce locals and visitors alike to Houston's culinary diversity by showing them where they eat on their days off. This chef-driven programme gives participants intimate knowledge about the city and its chefs; unexplored neighbourhoods; undiscovered restaurants and markets that contribute to the locally-driven menus of each chef.

The tours, limited to 16 participants, are $180 per person, which includes tastings at each stop, complimentary local Saint Arnold's beverages, limo-bus transportation and gift bag. Ticket proceeds benefit Foodways Texas. www.houstonculinarytours.com

Celebrate Maryland's world class wines and breathtaking landscapes with 'Wine in the Woods', a two day festival in the depths of Maryland's charming Symphony Woods (Saturday 19 May- Sunday 20 May 2013).

With over 400 different wines, skilled wine makers, and an ideal climate for ripening classical grapes, Maryland is perfect for producing a wide variety of wine to suit every taste. Sample the finest wines in Maryland at this lively woodland festival, whet your appetite at a variety of food stalls selling distinctive high quality cuisine, sharpen your palate with wine education seminars, and feast your eyes upon Maryland's masterpieces presented by selected local artists, all to a backdrop of live entertainment. www.wineinthewoods.com Maryland and the Capital Region USA www.CapitalRegionUSA.co.uk

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