Life and Style

Considerable volumes of wishful thinking and even more hot air have been expended on the 'wonderful' 2012 Burgundy vintage, currently on offer. Sparing you the hyperbole and cutting to the chase, Burgundy 2012 is a good vintage in which a handful of great wines have been made by a few exceptional growers. It is not a rising tide that raises all boats in the mould of 2005 or 2010.

Enraged wife stabs husband with ceramic squirrel because he didn’t buy beer

A 44-year-old woman allegedly attacked her husband with the decorative object because he came home without beer on Christmas Eve

New Year's Eve in the suburbs: Making the best of your home town

New Year's Eve would be one of the best student parties of the year - if you weren't stuck in suburbia

Lighten up: The best low-strength beers

I've never really understood why people give up alcohol for January. Of all the months to avoid hooch, why choose the grimmest, darkest, most spirit-sapping of all? It's the time of year when a glass is most welcome, particularly if it involves a warm pub and some friends.

'young Britons, often in packs, go out to get thoroughly, blindingly and often violently drunk'

Northampton left reeling by exposé of binge drinking - courtesy of the New York Times

Young Britons, drinking in packs, often end up 'gloriously incoherent', according to The New York Times

The snow globe in Piccadilly Circus, London, which was installed over the statue of Eros to shelter it from vandals over the Christmas season, was another victim of the strong winds that are blowing across the Capital

Giant Christmas snow globe to 'protect' statue of Eros in Piccadilly Circus shatters in high winds

A giant plastic snow globe meant to protect the famous statue of Eros in Piccadilly Circus over Christmas has mysteriously broken, showering shoppers in polystyrene pellets.

Kim Wilde has embarked on her first solo dates since 1986

Hampshire police investigate financial fraud in Mencap-run care home

Care home residents have been inappropriately charged by staff at one of Britain’s leading charities for products ranging from DVDs to Chinese takeaways.

Sales of champagne – especially in Britain – have slumped for the second year in succession

France is drowning in champagne as Britain loses taste for bubbly

Sales fall flat under pressure from cheaper alternatives

Two inmates have been arrested on suspicion of murder after a prisoner was found dead at HMP Lindholme

Two inmates arrested after death of prisoner in Lindholme prison

A snap inspection in the summer was highly critical of the jail's wing for low-risk prisoners

Rhys Ifans plays Danny in 'Protest Song' by Tim Price at the National's Shed theatre
Along for the bride: Neal Barry and Camille Coduri in 'Him & Her: the Wedding'

Him & Her - TV review: rolling in the aisles as the slackers are given the perfect send-off

After three series stuck inside Becky and Steve's musky bedsit, it was a relief to see BBC3's brilliant sitcom Him & Her finally get a bit of an airing. This fourth and final series has been set in a hotel, where we've witnessed the grand spectacle of mutually enabled delusion, pettiness and empty materialism that was the nuptials of Becky's vile sister Laura.

Iain Sellar in the still room at Diageo's Dalwhinnie distillery, in the Scottish Highlands

Jim Armitage: Man who put South African Breweries on global stage dies

Outlook I first met Graham Mackay, who died yesterday at 64, in a rather nice restaurant in London's Mayfair just before the turn of the millennium. With no great insight on my part – mere technophobia, really – I couldn't understand why nobody in the City seemed to be interested in investing in anything that didn't end in ".com".

A holiday with sparkle: Get into the festive spirit with a visit to Europe's finest spots for fizz

It's easier than ever to cut straight to the source of Europe's wine regions

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 12 March 2015
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
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