|Champagnes||Sparkling Wines||Rose wines||White wines||REDS|
|Michel Guilleminot Brut
Michel Guilleminot's brut enjoys an enviable reputation for sheer value for money and consistency. The perfect aperitif.
|Michel Guilleminot Rose
Extended skin contact gives this wine its vibrant deep salmon pink colour, and with it a wonderful summer berry aroma.
If it's good enough for William and Kate it's good enough for us - the champagne drunk at the royal wedding. Please note that it has been on the list for over 8 years not just because of the wedding!
|Billecart Salmon Brut
From this highly acclaimed House, a delightful champagne with a charming, fruity nose with a hint of roasted nuts
Mellow and complex, this classic champagne shows an extraordinary depth of flavour.
|Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV
From the maker of Cristal, a deliciously rich Champagne, with an overt fruitiness and nutty, yeasty notes. A rewarding finish is a hallmark of the house style.
|Krug Grande cuvee
Possibly the finest non-vintage champagne of them all. An explosion of flavours in the glass.
|Billecart Salmon Rose
One of my favourites! A blend of all three Champagne grapes to produce a perfectly balanced and refined Champagne.
|Michel Guilleminot brut - en magnum
Makes sense if you are 6 (persons not age!) or more in fact often when served by magnum it is of better quality as the wine has more room to develop
|Michel Guilleminot brut - halves
Makes sense if you are the only one drinking!
|Prosecco Vetriano - Italy
A classic Prosecco, crisp with flavours of fresh apple, an excellent apritif
|Louis Bouillot Perle D'aurore rose - Burgundy
Made using the traditional method, this salmon pink ros is soft and creamy-textured with delicate bubbles.
|Domaine Mas Belles Eaux Rosé, Languedoc - France
Crisp, dry wonderfully clean rode with a hint of dry herbaceous dryness on the end palate
|Chiaretto Rosé, Cadei Fratti - Veneto
Fresh, delicate and incisive, green apple, white almond and wild cherry, savoury taste which whets the appetite - great apperitif or with more delicate foods like risottos or cured meats.
|Sancerre Rosé, Domaine Daulny - Loire
Serious rose - dry lean and delicate - fabulous
|Dry . Fresh . Mineral
|2016 Cepage Colombard, Plaimont - COTES DE GASCOGNE
A dry easy drinking fresh wine with citrus tones.
|2016 Soave, Alpha Zeta - VERONA, ITALY
A pale lemon coloured wine, with clean, bright aromas of almond blossom. With fresh acidity, the palate is ripe and concentrated, full of apple and pear flavours. The finish is lively and crisp.
|2015 Casa da Senra Vinho Verde Loureiro, ABRIGUEIROS - PORTUGAL
Bright and intense citric colour confirming the youth of the wine. Predominance of citric fruit, with tropical and floral notes. A certain minerality can be traced adding to the wines complexity. Smooth attack, balanced acidity, good volume and a refreshing and long after taste.
|2016 Muscadet Sévre et Maine, Sur Lie, Domaine de la Mortaine - Loire
Fantastic with all types of seafood ? exceptional balance
|2015 Bourgogne Aligoté, Perraud BURGUNDY
A lovely well-made Aligote, delicate on the nose, elegant on the palate
|2016 Sauvignon Blanc, Domaine de La Baume, Languedoc - Loire
Fresh and vibrant with hints of cut grass, gooseberries and fresh melon
|2016 Gavi di Gavi, Giustiniana - Piedmont
A great example of just how good Gavi can be if made by the right winemaker.
|2016 Lugana, Felugan Feliciana - Veneto, Italy
From the scenic shores of Lake Garda in the Veneto comes this delicious Lugana. Made from Trebbiano di Lugana - a delicately floral nose which belies its complex palate. There is a real weight here, unctuous almost, but balanced and with pinpoint acidity.
|2015 Le G De Guiraud, CHATEAU GUIRAUD - BORDEAUX
A style of dry, white Sémillon/Sauvignon Blanc - attractive citrus, grassy elements and lighter stone fruits lead to pawpaw and ripe melon on the palate in a fresh, approachable style. Guiraud is one of the most famous Châteaux in the whole of France, making sweet wines which rival the greatest on the planet. This is a dry white made from the same estate and it spends a small amount of time in barrels which were previously used for the sweet Sauternes. This gives this citrus-themed wine immense class and mystery!
|2016 Sancerre, Francois Millet - Loire
Delicious fresh fruit, ripe gooseberries and tropical aromas
|2017 Pouilly-Fumé, Domaine Des Fines Caillottes, Alain Pabiot - Loire
Grass, currants, citrus fruits all with a vibrant acidity and a fruity finish
|2011 Pouilly-Fume Silex, Didier Dagueneau - Loire
Something of a maverick Didier Dagueneau had been single-mindedly dedicated to producing the "the best Sauvignon Blancs in the world," until his untimely and tragic death in September 2008. Didier was by no means afraid of experimentation, one of the few to ferment his Sauvignon's in oak barrels.
|Aromatic - Dry Fruitiness
|2016 Regaleali Bianco, Tasca D'Almerita - Sicily
A deliciously refreshing wine; attractive floral nose, hints of sage and blueberry, palate very appealing richness of melon and pineapple, but with a balanced acidity ? great value!
|2016 Saumur Blanc, Cave de Saumur - Loire
A cornerstone Saumur - Quaffable, consistent Chenin blanc - lovely, zesty, un-oaked Chenin Blanc with bags of ripe fruit and a clean, dry finish. A refreshing, fruity, bon march crowd-pleaser that I?m sure will become a firm favourite.
|2014 Riesling Mitchell - Clare Valley, Australia
Crisp acidity and a long lingering fruit finish. Classic Riesling ?petrolly? nose.
|2016 Sauvignon Blanc, Nika Tiki - Marlborough, Kiwi
Outstanding find from the latest batch of fresh sauvignon blanc from down-under; everything you would expect from this Marlborugh classic.
|2014 Riesling, Hospices De Colmar - Alsace , France
These old vines are set in 4.5 hectares of soft clay soil. Its wonderfully fresh and vibrant. Amongst the typical petrol nose, it hints white peach, blossom and citrus fruits. Beautifully balanced
|2016 Sauvignon Blanc, Greywacke - Marlborough, NZ
A modern classic from the maker of Cloudy bay ? Kevin Judd. Sets the benchmark for new world sauvignons!
|2015 Cartology, Alheit Vineyards - Westrern Cape, South Africa
Alheit Vineyards were created in 2010, bringing together parcels of land from around the Cape. Primarily to show that the Capes vinous heritage is worth celebrating and protecting, and that old vineyards and ordinary grapes provided are a wonderful opportunity of portraying what is possible. The Cartology cuveé is composed of rare and extraordinary parcels of mature dryland bushvines. The varieties used are - Chenin blanc and Semillon, and have been planted in the Cape for centuries. The Chenin comes from Skurfberg, Perdeberg, Bottelary, False Bay and Botrivier. The Semillon comes from the old La Colline block in Franschhoek. 2015 was an extremely good vintage for white wine in the Cape. Intensely flavoured; ripe pear, honey and limey citrus come to mind. There are herbal/floral notes too - spearmint and lime leaf. The natural acid is a treat.
|Aromatic - off dry to medium dry richness
|2016 Gewrztraminer reserve, Cave de Hunawihr - Alsace
Pale gold colour, Turkish delight that jumps up your nose and Lychees again dominant with a touch of sweetish rose water and seriously overripe exotic fruit. Good acidity leaving you just wanting more!
|2015 Pinot Gris Signature, Ren Mure - Alsace
Richly dry, with enticing flavours of spiced pear, clean citrusy balance and a good positive finish - cracking
|2015 Pinot Gris, Greywacke - Marlborough, NZ
A luxurious concoction of pears, red apples and quince make for a rich aromatic profile with hints of honeysuckle and cardamom spice, intriguing array of flavors in a supple, concentrated just off-dry style.
|Rich & Full Bodied dry Whites - Non Chardonnay
|2016 Luberon, Famille Perrin, Cotes Du Luberon
Bright pale yellow with hints of yellow fruit, hazelnuts and vine peaches.
|2016 Godello Maga, Karma do sil - Ribeira Sacra, Spain
In the right hands, the Godello grape of Galicia can yield wines of Puligny-Montrachet-like purity and structure. Antonio Lombardia is a brilliant winemaker and the owner of some beautiful vineyards. Everything here is hand-picked, carefully destemmed and then fermented at cool temperatures to get the purest expression of Godello from his prime fruit. This sees no oak, spends a good amount of time in tank on the lees to intensify the flavour and add texture simple yet intelligent, careful winemaking
|2016 Rioja Blanco, Sierra de Tolono - Rioja, Spain
Produced from individual white vines (viura) from old vineyards where they are intermixed with the reds in the Rivas de Tereso village. Sandra Bravo likes clean and fresh whites, pure and direct. Delicate nose and then firm structure. It's young and fresh, with even a saline/mineral touch from the limestone-rich soils that invites you to drink.
|2015 Ribeiro Blanco V Finca Viñoa - Ribeiro, Spain
With the 2013 vintage awarded a Gold Medal in the International Wine Challenge 2015 and the 2012 vintage recommended by Jancis Robinson in her Top Holiday Whites article in the Financial Times (December 2013), you can be in no doubt that Ribeiro Blanco V Finca Viñoa is a special wine. The Galician region of Ribeiro is not as well known in the UK as neighbouring Rías Baixas, but its dashing mineral whites are equally good at matching the abundant local seafood. Made principally from treixadura coming from a blend of grapes indigenous to Ribeiro, it is long and creamy on the palate with captivating aromas of peach and citrus blossom. This exceptional white wine pairs superbly with seafood.
|2015 Viognier, Vin de pays de la Drôme, Domaine Lombard - Rhone
100% pure Viognier offers white peach aromas, bags of character and packed with ripe tropical fruit
|2015 Lias Albariño, Bodegas Martin Códax - Rias Baixas, Spain
Martín Códax is a modern and dynamic co-operative, situated in the Salnés Valley, to the north of Rías Baixas, in the north-western region of Galicia. It was founded in 1986 by 50 families and has since grown to over 550 members. The co-operative was named Martín Códax after the medieval poet and minstrel who lived in Galicia. The co-operative was instrumental in the creation of the Rías Baixas DO in 1988 (the statutes were signed at the winery) and has championed the Albariño variety, now the most widely planted in the region.
|2016 Extramundi, Bodegas Pazo Tizón - Ribeiro, Spain
Another offering from the fashionable region of Galicia, Extramundi refers to the area's otherworldly nature. This absolute winner is a fascinating blend of Treixadura, Albariño, Godello and Loureira, with a beautiful saline mouthfeel mixed with some apricot and peachy fruit characters. It is a stylish and sophisticated wine to enjoy with food
|2015 Gran Autocton Blanc, Autòcton Celler - Catalunya, Spain
Producer Albert Jané new project: Autòcton Celler (autòcton means local, indigenous, autochthonous). It is a project from a selection of the oldest vineyards of local varieties like Sumoll, Xarel lo, Xarel lo Vermell, Malvasia de Sitges, Subirat Parent, Macabeu... fermented in tank or big barrels or amphores in Mas Vilella which is a very old traditional Catalan house dated from XVI century. This is a blend of native varieties, only here the old vine fruit is aged in older French oak vats to add a light toasty veneer and creaminess of texture to the concentration of ripe stone fruit flavours yet with no loss of the fresh acidity that gives both wines an appealing dry, almost mineral, finish.
|2014 Pinot Bianco, Illivio Livio Felluga - Fruili-Venezia Giulia, italy
There are few producers who have been more important in defining the quality image of Italian white wines than Livio Felluga. Their landmark 'Terre Alte' see below bin 321 - was first produced in 1981, and they have continued to make innovative and consistently high quality wines ever since. The way in which winemaker Andrea Felluga has embraced Stelvin is another example of his forward-thinking approach. Intense straw yellow. The nose is fragrant, elegant and intense with aromas of sweet fruit, pineapple, candied orange, acacia flowers, rose and vanilla. Full and compact on the palate it shows exotic, mineral and persistent flavours with pleasant notes of pear and cream.
|2014 Condrieu Combe de Malleval, Michel & Stephane Ogier - Rhone
Made from 25-year-old Viognier vines taken from two plots: Veauvignière à Malleval and lieu-dit La Combe, Condrieu 'Combe de Malleval' 2016 from Stephane Ogier is finely textured, rich and mouth filling with captivating notes of honeysuckle, stem ginger, almond and fresh figs brimming with apricots and peaches it leaps from the glass. This is a stunning viognier; classically weighty this wine can be enjoyed today but will get even better with a little ageing. The long mineral finish provides good structure to the wine. Ogier is a famous for their excellent Cote Rotie but their Condrieus should not be overlooked.
|2013 Marsanne, Qupé Winery - Santa Barbara, California
Leave this in the glass for a good 5 minutes, it takes a while to unwind, but then it hits its stride with hay, lemon pith, apricot and ripe pear flavours.
|2015 Terre Alte, Livio Felluga - Fruili-Venezia Giulia, italy
Elegant and intense, this wine has a very Burgundian style! A full bodied, structured and layered wine which has a refreshing minerality followed by a persistent, complex finish
|Non Burgundy lighter Bodied
|2016 Domaine du Cléray - Loire
Western end of of the Loire, this Chardonnay has more than a hint of Chablis about it, with pure, pristine green-apple and citrus fruit flavours, and a familiar hint of minerality. Very good partner with seafood and shellfish Mildred.
|2015 Solea, Roagna - Langhe Piedmont, Italy
75 to 80% Chardonnay, 20 to 25% Nebbiolo. Seldom am I lost for words as many friends will vouch for, but I tried this at a gathering of small Italian producers in London, and was shocked at the complexity and minerality of this wine which if tried blind it would have had me pinning it in Burgundy. We have listed a few of Roagna Familys red wines - namely his stunning Barbaresco, which had many of our customers falling over themselves, so a great treat to come across the white. A belief in keeping things natural no herbicides, pesticides or fertilizers in the vineyards, and a cover crop of grass forces the vine roots deeper to search for nutrients
|2015 Collezione Privata, ISOLE E OLENA - TUSCANY, ITALY
Paolo De Marchi's vineyards, like those of Giovanni Manetti at Fontodi, are superbly tended. This, more than anything, yields wines of the quality that have kept them both ahead of the chasing pack for the past two decades. The wine itself has an inviting golden colour. Rich aromas of toasted almonds with buttery notes. On the palate, there is great balance between rich, ripe fruit, creamy brioche and complex minerality. A full-bodied mouthfeel extends through to a long finish.
|2014 Dog Point Vineyard - Marlborough, New Zealand
A lovely structured and elegant wine. The vineyard takes a ?low tech? approach which is key to the quality of this wine.
|2006 Bell Hill - Canterbury, New Zealand (Low Stock)
Minerally and peachy, different from 2005
|Non Burgundy Medium to fuller Bodied
|2015 3 Lions - Plantagenet, Albany- West Australia
Soft textured and fruit full chardonnay. Nectarine, pink grapefruit and melon fruit flavours, hints of oak and well-balanced acidity
|2015 Wild Boy - Santa Barbara County, California
In 1989 and 1990 Au Bon Climat was on Robert Parker's short list of Best Wineries in the World, and in 1991 was selected by Oz Clark as one of fifty world-wide creators of Modern Classic Wines. The winery has cultivated an international reputation for its wines, and recognised worldwide for classically styled wines. Pale straw with a green hue. The nose has lemon, lime and sherbet notes, ripe apple fruit with a viscous, mouth coating texture but with a zesty, medium finish to leave the mouth clean. Oak notable but not overwhelming.
|2015 M3 Shaw and Smith - Adelaide Hills, Australia
Shows the characters of the cool summer and autumn in 2012, with primary fruit notes of nectarine and cumquat, and vivid fresh acidity that provides structure and focus.
|2014 Frog's Leap, Napa Valley, California
My wife and I had a most enjoyable time tasting older vintages from the fantastic Frog's Leap Winery estate in the NAPA valley this September. Associated with John Williams owner and wine maker for many years, Sacha's father Richard Wheeler, first knocked on his door in 1986 and struck up an immediate rapport, and so started importing these wines of great elegance and finesse to the UK. So, to visit the winery for the first time was a truly magical and wonderful experience. John has a simple philosophy which is emulated throughout his wines, of keeping things as natural as possible, let nature do the talking, something I wholeheartedly support - no irrigation, no fertilizers, no pesticides - is not a recent phenomenon that John has recently jumped on but one he has been practicing since he first started making wines at Frog's Leap in 1981..
50 years ago there were just 400ha of vineyards in Chablis, today there are 4,900ha. The generic and premier cru vineyards have doubled since 1970. Being further north than the rest of Burgundy, and on a different version of limestone - Kimmeridgian, and some Portlandian the wines are subtly but fundamentally different in style - fresh minerality and steeliness which makes them so good with seafood. Allow the wines time to settle and relax in the glass, and enjoy it as it develops in the glass.
|2016 Petit Chablis, Domaine du Colombier
|2016 Chablis, Domaine Seguinot-Bordet
|2015 Chablis 1er Cru, Vau De Vay, Domaine Des Malandes
|2012 Chablis 1er Cru, Mont de Milieu, Domaine Billaud-Simon
|2010 Chablis 1er Cru, Montée de Tonnerre, Domaine William Fèvre
|2009 Chablis 1er Cru Vaillons, Domaine, Dauvissat-Camus
|2005 Chablis Grand Cru, Les Preuses, Billaud-Simon
|2005 Chablis Grand Cru, Les Clos, Billaud-Simon
The Maconnais is a most dynamic region. In the past Pouilly Fuiss, rich and ripe white wines, stood out from the crowd, but a new generation of growers are now producing some excellent Mcon Villages.ÿThese wines used to be cheap and simple, rarely lasting more than a year or two after the vintage, but now one or two growers in each village are making proper, oak aged, complex and reasonably concentrated wines which will develop well in bottle. The Côte Chalonnaise is south of the main Côte d'Or, the vineyards are interspersed with other forms as agriculture, with just the more favoured slopes being dedicated to vineyards. These wines are fuller and richer wines, more intensity of fruit but with that glorious burgundian overtone of substance and style.
|2016 Macon-Bussières Vignes de Montbrison, Maison Verget
|2016 Saint-Veran, Les Chailloux, Domaine Des Deux Roches
|2015 Macon Villages, Domaine Terres Secretes
|2015 Pouilly Fuisse Sur La Roche, Domaine Gilles Morat
|2014 Saint Romain, Domaine Olivier Leflaive
|2013 Macon Chardonnay, Les Hritiers des Comtes Lafon
|More Affordable Burgundy
The cost of Burgundy just goes in one direction, UP! Making it less and less affordable for wine lovers, as world-wide demand for these wonderful wines carries on unabated. What we have tried to do on this page, in addition to having a fabulous selection of wines from the Macon/Chalonais regions, is introduce wines from the classic villages from top producers but listing their generic wines, where the grapes used are from vines deemed to be too young, or from vineyards next door to the village classified wines but perhaps on the lower slopes. Whatever the reason, the wines listed below are delicious on the palate, and more palatable on the pocket!
|Village of Vosne-Romanée
|2014 Hautes-Côtes de Nuits Blanc Cuveé Marine, Domaine Anne Gros
Visited again last November it is always a privilege to just be allowed into this quite magnificent winery to taste wines that one can only dream about these days. But it was in San Francisco, in a brilliant Chinese restaurant with a list to match, that I tried this very wine - aromatic clarity, limpid precision, sheer joie de vivre, lively balance and persistence. It went brilliantly with the Chinese, but I hasten to add you dont have to have oriental cuisine to enjoy this!
|Village of Meursault
|2013 Bourgogne Blanc, Domaine Patrick Javillier
This cuvee comes from different parcels in the Bourgogne Blanc appellation situated in the territory of Meursault les Herbeux and les Vaux next to Volnay. The brown soils of les Herbeux and a part of les Vaux are on silt covering ancient alluvium or villa franchian. The nose of this wine is expressive with notes of white and yellow fruits, succulent flowers and touches of toast. The nose is elegant and powerful. The attack is round and vivacious. On the palate, the wine displays fine balance and a lovely body with crisp acidity. The same aromas are found as on the nose. This is an expressive and fresh wine with a long finish.
|Village of Montrachet
|2014 Bourgogne Blanc, Domaine Etienne Sauzet
The original Etienne Sauzet (1903-75) put together a wine domaine of around 12 hectares and established the Sauzet name as one of the top two or three addresses in the village. The vineyards have been farmed organically since 2006 and after two years of experimentation all switched to biodynamic cultivation from 2010. The grapes are sorted to remove grey rot where necessary, then pressed without crushing and fermented in oak until racking into tank before the next harvest, for a further six months lvage on the fine lees. Very aromatic, with more white flowers than yellow fruit. The palate has a good balance of acidity and concentrated fruit flavours. A lovely wine, elegant and tasting far above its AOC.
|White Burgundy - Corton & Nuit-Saint-Georges
These wines are the furthest north in Burgundy apart from the Marsannay on our list of white wines. As a rule they are more subtle and have greater minerality than their counterparts further south. Nuit St Georges lies in the south of the Cote de Nuits, whilst Corton-Charlemagne lies astride three villages at the northern end of the Cte de Beaune - Ladoix, Aloxe-Corton ÿand Pernand Vergelesses. The main body of the hill of Corton faces due south, with an extended flank exposed to the east, and another facing westwards. The white wines mostly come from the west and south-west expositions, along with a narrow band around the top of the hill. These are cracking wines showing the minerality one would expect.
|2007 Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Clos de la Marechale Blanc, Domaine Jacques-Frederic Mugnier
|2007 Corton-Charlemagne, le Charlemagne Grand Cru, Domaine de La Vougeraie (Low Stock)
|White Burgundy - Meursault
Meursault is probably the most famous and popular of the great white appellations. Its wines are typically rich and savoury with nutty, honeyed hints and buttery, vanilla spice from the oak.ÿ
|2014 Domaine Ballot-Millot
|2013 Clos de la Velle, DOMAINE DARVIOT-PERRIN
|2007 Tête de Murgers, DOMAINE PATRICK JAVILLIER
|2007 Meursault, Domaine Pierre Morey
|2013 Meursault, 1er Cru Blagny Domaine Jobard
|2011 Meursault, 1er Cru Les Charmes Domaine Jobard
|2008 Meursault, 1er Cru Charmes, Domaine Matrot
|White Burgundy - Saint Aubin
Not the most famous of the Cote d'Or villages, but Saint-Aubin is one of Burgundy's top-performing wine communes in terms of both volume and vineyard quality; nearly three-quarters of its sites have Premier Cru status. Though Saint-Aubin wines are rarely considered to be among the region's finest, they are known for offering excellent value for money and can provide a good introduction to Burgundy wines of both colours.
|2015 Saint Aubin, Princée, Domaine Hubert Lamy
|2015 Saint Aubin 1er Cru Clos de la Chatenière, Domaine Hubert Lamy
|White Burgundy - Auxey Duresses
We visited Benjamins winery in Beaune, November last year a state of the art set up that impressed immediately. You cannot but be infected by his dedication and enthusiasm, however, it was his willingness to learn and listen to others from outside Burgundy that struck me most. Wishing to experiment rather than sit on his laurels. His white Auxey Duresses is utterly delicious.
|2015 Auxey Duresses, Domaine Benjamin Leroux
|White Burgundy - Montrachet
When it comes to the world's greatest white wines, the border between Chassagne and Puligny is it! So what is the difference you may ask?
Chassagne's style is perhaps between that of Puligny-Montrachet and Meursault: less fine than Puligny, less rich and intense than Meursault but contains both. Chassagne is minerally yet succulent, often floral with hints of hazelnuts.
|2014 Chassagne-Montrachet, Dom. Michel Neillon
|2013 Chassagne-Montrachet, 1er Cru "Les Chenevottes", Bruno Colin
|2011 Chassagne-Montrachet, 1er Cru "Les Chenevottes", Jean-Marc Pillot
|2009 Chassagne-Montrachet, 1er Cru Clos St Jean, Paul Pillot
|2009 Chassagne-Montrachet, La Grande Montagne, Olivier Leflaive Frères
Puligny produces wines that are more striking than any, portraying an elegance alongside a stylish, steely concentration.ÿThey are very different to Meursault: more refined and delicate, and less rich.
|2011 Puligny Montrachet, Domaine Etitenne Sauzet
|2012 Puligny Montrachet, Pernot-Belicard
|2010 Puligny Montrachet, Alain Chavy
|2012 Puligny Montrachet 1er Cru Folatierès, Domaine Vincent Girardin
|2009 Puligny Montrachet, 1er Cru Champs Canet, Domaine Jean-Marc Boillot
|Lighter & medium bodied
|2016 Carignan/Merlot, Mon Roc - Languedoc/Roussillon
Good depth of colour, and a good balance between the opulent fruit and full, robust tannins. Stunning for the price.
|2015 Merlot, Montes Classic - Colchagua Valley, Chile
Spicy black pepper full of harmony and soft on the palate.
|2013 'Cuvée Magali' Château Milhau-Lacugue - Saint Chinian
If one were looking for a wine that exemplifies how the Languedoc offers terrific quality at modest prices this would silence any sceptics! Blended from Southern staples Syrah, Grenache Noir and Cinsault, this Saint-Chinian wine has a fresh, lip-smacking finish that guarantees you'll want to take another sip. Cuvée Magali is a youthful and accessible wine with a wealth of bright, berry fruit with peppery undertones
|2016 Artuke Rioja, Bodegas y Viñedos Artuke - Rioja, Spain
Biodynamic production: 22 hectares of vines spread over 32 plots. Artuke is run by the family of Miguel Blanco, who have been working the land in this Northern part of Rioja Alavesa for over a century. The helm is now taken by Miguel's two sons Arturo and Kike. Their aim is to create a new and individual wine which still respects the history of the wine region and of their family wine tradition. The result: A thoroughly modern style of Rioja, not heavily extracted or heavily wooded in style, but deep, bright purple-edged and glossy in the glass, soft, 'real juice' feel. Not just purple juice either, there's a nice savoury depth which makes this interesting to the end
|2015 Ribeo, Azienda Agricola Roccapesta - Tuscany
Maremma lies in the southern part of Tuscany and consequently is a little warmer than the more established regions Alberto Tanzini therefore has to work hard to maintain the balance and freshness of his Sangiovese the stylish, very easy to drink Ribeo with its distinctive label.
|2014 Syrah du Maroc Tandem, Alain Graillot - Morocco
Tandem is an unusual wine from the Benslimane region of Morocco, 30 km NE of Casablanca. It has elements of Alain Graillot's Crozes (peppery, fruit-forward Syrah) combined with warming, baked fruit and spice notes. Graillots Moroccan joint venture with the Ouled Thaleb winery, NE of Casablanca is pure Syrah and is named 'Tandem' because Alain first met the owners whilst on a cycling holiday. Moroccan wine has been around for some time - there is evidence of wine-making in the Meknes region 2,000 years ago - but its heyday was during the French protectorate (1912-56), indeed the Ouled Thaleb cellar was built in 1923. Recently, French producers such as Alain Graillot and Bordeaux wine magnet Bernard Magrez have successfully spearheaded a revival based on quality over quantity
|2015 Chianti Colli Aretini, Mannucci Droandi - Montevarchi, Tuscany
The name of the estate derives from two families, the Droandis and the Mannuccis, although it is the Mannucci family, led by Roberto and his wife Maria Grazia, who run the estate today. The main part of the estate lies in Campolucci, on the eastern slopes of the Chianti mountains in the sub zoneof Colli Aretini. The Chianti Colli Aretini is made from 90% Sangiovese, 5% Cannaiolo and 5% other local varieties. Its aged for a year in French barriques and then released a further year post bottling. Its full of fruit with an ideal mix of teasing structure and juiciness and delivers an awful lot for the money.
|2016 Dolcetto dAlba, GD VAJRA - PIEDMONT, ITALY
I was gobsmacked by its drinkability. If you enjoy Montepulciano or other similar reds from Italy try this - simply fantastic value.
|2015 Julienas, Domaine du Clos du Fief, Michel Tête - Beaujolais
One of my favourite producers, and this does not let me down. Beautifully balanced, graceful style of Gamay. Stunning value.
|2014 Palazzo Della Torre, Allegrini - Verona
Deep ruby red in colour, with perfumes ofÿcherry and black forest gateaux. It has a smooth and velvety character, with mature, pulpy fruit and delicious raisin flavours. A Blend of 70% normal fermented wine, and 30% made from grapes that have been allowed to gently dry for around 100 days. This intensifies the flavour and colour of that portion of the wine and adds an extra ?kick? to the final blend. Rich dark chocolate flavours mingle with juicy, ripe red and black cherry flavours - a savoury yeasty note that will add extra complexity to the wine. Try it with roast duck or a mushroom risotto.
|Heavy Fuller-bodied succulent Reds
|2016 Jumilla, Bodegas Olivares - Jumilla, Spain
Made from a blend of old vine Monastrell, Grenache and Syrah, is well-balanced, medium bodied with enticing aromas and flavours of ripe blackberries, black cherries, earth and black pepper spice. Paco Selva and his family have worked tirelessly to improve the quality of their wines at Bodegas Olivares. Blessed with a high proportion of some of the worlds largest collection of ungrafted old Monastrell vines, their vineyards also benefit from the coolness brought by the higher altitude. A judicious use of French oak barrels brings just the right amount of tightness and gives another dimension to the rich and spicy wines produced here.
|2015 Chateau Malbat - Bordeaux
Hard stone berry fruit, laden with layers of different fruit, starts hard finishes very elegantly.
|2015 Tempranillo, Willunga 100 McLaren Vale, Australia
Aromatics of black cherry, sweet plum and hints of all spice are evident, whilst the palate is a little more serious with blackberries, spice and an earthiness that gives the wine a savoury note. The tannins are persistent and promote great length, backed up by a balanced acid structure.
|2015 Shiraz, Jester Mitolo - Australia
Deep, dark red. The nose is bright, lifted and aromatic,with raspberry, blackberry and mint chocolate characters. The palate is concentrated with a luscious rolling texture and packed with fresh blackberry and plum, dark chocolate, liquorice and a hint of white pepper spice. The wine is juicy and plush with silky tannins that linger, providing a drying, savoury finish.
|2015 Malbec/Corvina, Passo Doble, Masi - Tupungato, Argentina
A blend of malbec and corvina from Argentina with Italian styling from the Verona house of Masi. The wine has been made in the Venetian ripasso style provding a delicious seductive style. We have been trying this wine for many years ? following different vintages, and every time it has had the thumbs down, this time however - without doubt for us - the best vintage of Masi's foray into Argentina. Dry and with good depth, a real sexy beast.
|2010 Rioja Crianza, Marques de Zearra, Bodega I Petralanda - Rioja
This crackerjack red Rioja that drinks itself, is pure Tempranillo from a small bodega in Fuenmajor. It has 24 months in barrel and 3 years in bottle prior to release, illustrating the great value to be found in La Rioja. Finding it difficult to find a reliable source of good wines for his restaurant in Bilbao, Iñake Petralanda Uria Zearra decided to make his own. Establishing a winery in his wife's home town of Fuenmajor in the heart of Rioja Alta in 1983, he hasn't looked back and now runs a thriving bodega
|2015 Laderas de Leonilla Mencia, Màquina y Tabla - Bierzo, Spain
This is an exciting project created by husband and wife Oriol Illa and Susana Pastor in 2012. A full-bodied Mencia from a rented 3ha vineyard, it expresses bright, tangy red cherry characters with soft tannins. Intense flavours, and savoury notes on the finish reflect the terroir. incredible sense of identity and real pow! Pure, elegant, expressive and so, so drinkable. They look absolutely beautiful too for those that love the red wines of Spain you will not be disappointed and its something different.
|2014 Meerlust Red, Meerlust Estate - Stellenbosch, South Africa
Merlot, Cab Franc, Cab Sauv. An intense cassis and mocha nose, hints of creamy oak and baking spice with earthiness and minerality. Juicy plum-cassis fruit, fine silky tannins and excellent length. Hannes Myburgh is the 8th generation of Myburghs to own Meerlust since they bought the estate in 1756. They are most well-known for the iconic Bordeaux blend - Rubicon - first introduced in 1980. Meerlust produced largely from younger vines in the same vineyard, is excellent value, having a lot of the class of the Rubicon at a far more attractive price. A bargain some might say.
|2014 Minervois Les Fontanilles DOMAINE ANNE GROS & JEAN-PAUL TOLLOT - Minervois
Anne Gros and Jean Paul Tollot, two highly regarded Burgundian winegrowers for over 20 years, purchased the fine terroirs of Cazelles, in Minervois! Cazelles provided diversity of soil - limestone, clay and sandstone, quality and age range of its vines, and the environment - at the foot of the Black Mountains, at an altitude of 220 metres - identical to Vosne-Romanée
|2010 Malbec, Chateau de Chambert - Cahors, Southern France
Not Argentinian or south American so don?t expect big plummy luscious fruit, More subtlety, but still delightful aromas of plum and blackberries wrapped around velvety tannins. Perfect with red meat or anything spicy, definitely more of a food wine rather than its new world counterparts!
|2011 Bandol, Domaine de Terrebrune - Provence
A lovely mix of Mourvedre, Grenache and Cinsault with great ageing potential.
|Classic Rhone & European varietals - New World
|2010 Le Cigare Volant, Bonny Doon Vineyard - Monterey, California
The composition of this cracker is based on traditional use of Southern French grapes, Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre & Cinsault. Decant ? as should breathe before drinking.
|2010 Amon-Ra Shiraz, Glaetzer - Barossa Valley Australia
Glaetzer Wines are new to our list, a wine producer from the Barossa Valley region, founded in 1995 by Colin Glaetzer, and is now run by his son Ben. The range is headed by Amon-Ra, Glaetzer's flagship Shiraz. Robert Parker gave the 2003 vintage a score of 96-100 which helped establish it as one of the most sought-after and expensive Australian wines. 2010 it has rated at 97-100. All the fruit comes from the Ebenezer sub-district, sourced from a small group of contract growers with well-established, low-yielding vineyards with vines up to 110 years old. Ben is also a partner in and winemaker for Mitolo.
|2006 Shiraz, Shirvington Estate - McLaren Vale, Australia
95 out of 100 Robert Parker Wine Advocate. 100% barrel-fermented and oak aged for 12 months: An opaque red colour with a purple hue. Amazingly concentrated and intense nose with blueberry and blood plum filling the headspace. These fruit notes are joined with dark chocolate, vanilla bean and golden syrup nuances. The opulent palate has a magnitude of oak-driven, sweet creamy layers, soft and supple tannins and a seamless length, full of liquorice, toasted coconut and cracked black pepper. Drinking well now but will develop. Throws a noticeable sediment and will repay careful decanting.
|2006 Shiraz, Zippys Block, Two Hands - Barossa Valley, Australia
Our Highest scoring listed wine yet! At 97/100 points. This is an outstanding Shiraz from one of Barossas top vineyard. Founded in 1999 by Michael Twelftree and Richard Mintz as a negociánt-style business. Expect lashings of ripe black fruit, cherry and spice, the finish is truly somthing to be admired, do watch out as it packs an enormous punch at 16.5%
|2005 Stonewell Shiraz, Peter Lehmann - Barossa Valley, Australia
Peter Lehmann Wines was established in 1980 in Tanunda, South Australia, by its eponymous founder, who was widely known as "the Baron of the Barossa". There is a wide range of wines made at Peter Lehmann but the icon wine is the Stonewell Shiraz, a wine that includes grapes from Peter Lehmann's own vineyard, Stonewell, in the Marananga district of Barossa Valley. The Stonewell is a limited release and only made in the years where grapes reach required standards. This vintage of Stonewell has received remarkable plaudits across the globe!
|2005 Shiraz, Bellas Garden, Two Hands - Barossa Valley, Australia
This has been given 93/100 points by some of the best known MWs of the world! At 14.8% is one to watch, with rich, fleshy fruit in abundance, but not the least jammy; indeed, borders on outright elegance; good balance and structure
|2004 The Dead Arm Shiraz, d'Arenberg - McLaren Vale, Australia
D'Arenberg's flagship and most well known wine and another Robert Parker pleaser 95-100! Named after the vine disease that can randomly affect vineyards, resulting in half the vine dying. This intensifies and concentrates the grapes on the other side of the Shiraz vines, making an intensely flavoured wine. The estate was established in 1912 by Joseph Osborn, who initially sold grapes from the vineyards to other wineries in the region. The d'Arenberg winery was built in 1927, and today, the estate is run by fourth-generation Chester Osborn and his father, d'Arry.
|The Rhone Valley - Old World
|2014 Lirac, Moulin Des Che¤es, Famille Brchet - Rhone Valley
Bursting red and black fruit, complex undercurrent of spice, tobacco, earth, pepper which will develop and come more prominent in the glass. Harmonious & elegant.
|2014 Cuvée Tradition, Domaine Richeaume Cotes de Provence
This organic IGP Mediterranee is simply delicious. Blended from descending percentages of Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache Noir and Tempranillo. The signature wine of Sylvain Hoesch - a gifted and free-spirited winemaker, who doesn't like being shackled by Gallic bureacracy and prefers to bottle his wine as humble 'IGP' rather than kowtow to the 'Institute Nationale des Appellations d'Origine'. It has briary, garrigue-berry aromas and a core of juicy, dark cassis fruit licked with notes of herbs and spices supported by a couch of silky tannins. It drinks beautifully on its youthful fruit but will readily support 5-10 years bottle age.
|2014 Coudoulet de Beaucastel, FAMILLE PERRIN
The 30 hectares of Coudoulet are located just east of the vineyard of Beaucastel. 2013 is a juicy, forward and textured example of this cuvee, the 2013 Coudoulet de Beucastel Ctes du Rhne has juicy blueberry, garrigue and lavender notes to go with a fleshy, medium to full-bodied on the palate. Soft, with low acidity and a hard-to-resist feel.
|2012 Gigondas Les Hautes Garrigues, Domaine Santa Duc
Gigondas is a village in the southern Rhone valley, with its own appellation for Grenache-based red and rosé wines. The domaine was founded in Gigondas in 1874, and takes its name from the Grand-duc owl. Today, Domaine Santa Duc is farmed using organic viticultural practices to safeguard its unique biodiversity. 75% Grenache, 20% Mourvèdre, 5% Syrah/Cinsault - very concentrated and juicy. Some animal notes. Transparent. Relatively light. Slightly dry finish.
|2012 St Joseph, Domaine Jean-Louis Chave
Famous for their fastidious and skilful blending - this is pure Syrah grown on steeply terraced slopes in Saint-Joseph's historic heartland. Exhibits terrific blackberry, ground pepper, and its medium to full-bodied, nicely concentrated and has an open, sexy appeal!
|2010 Crozes Hermitage, Alain Graillot
The Graillots' principal wine, in volume terms, is the classic, red Crozes-Hermitage 'Alain Graillot'. Made from pure Syrah it is an accessible and forward drinking wine, with lots of bright berry scents and flavours supported by supple tannins, peppery notes and a fresh acidity
|2010 Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Omnia, Rotem & Mounir Saouma
Omnia is Latin for all or everything as all of Châteauneuf-du-Pape is represented in this wine thanks to the inclusion of numerous grape varieties, especially Grenache noir, from across the appellation.
|2008 Côte-Rôtie, Côte Blonde, Domaine Réné Rostaing
Darker and ripe and beginning to be very expressive. Peppery and herbal on the palate, combined with edgy bright fruit and a peppery aftertaste. Fine fine tannins, lively and with marked minerality.
|2007 Cornas, Domaine Clape
The family's wine-making philosophy is simple to make wines that are as true to their terroir as possible within the context of the vintage. The flagship Cornas, which, to many observers represents the Gold Standard of the appellation, typically displays a wealth of stewed red and black fruit aromas preceding a complex palate of dark berries and cherries offset by cooler granitic notes and a fine acidity, the whole supported by rugged tannins that will support (at least) a decade's bottle age.
|2007 PIGNAN Chateauneuf-du-Pape Reserve, Chateau Rayas
A unique wine - extraordinarily elegant with fantastic complexity.
|2001 Chateauneuf-du-Pape La Crau, Domaine du Vieux Telegraphe
Strawberry, kirsch and earth, rustic and peppery, full bodied and structured, Lightly animal nose and fully melded. Lots of sweetness. Spice and something quite medicinal
|Smooth, Silky elegant red wines - Fine Italian - Piedmont
|2013 Mimmo, Vino rosso, Le Piane
The most approachable and most immediately inviting of Christoph's magical wines from these high vineyards in the Alta Piedmont. This is 70% Nebbiolo and 30% Croatina with just a touch of Vespaiola too. Fruit delivers better, darker, richer and yet still somehow more floral too, cherries, blackberry, again grip, bit of old spice, beautiful lick of acid and great length. High toned feel - but definitely the showiest of his wines. See Bin 1107
|2012 Barbaresco Bordini, Azienda Agricola Elvio Cogno
Valteris Fissore, son in law of Elvio, now runs this fabulous estate. He is an unabashed lover of Burgundy and his wines have a finesse running through them more often associated with the Côte de Nuits than Piedmont. Having listed his Barolo which was superb. This New listing is one to get stuck in to. Full of bright accessible fruit, plenty of juiciness very sexy!
|2012 Il Favot, Langhe Nebbiolo, Poderi Aldo Conterno
100% Nebbiolo - a serious wine with superb concentration and balance.
|2011 Langhe Rosso, Roagna
Based in the village of Barbaresco, the Roagna family have been producing wine for generations, in the tiny hamlet of Paglieri, which houses the famous vineyard of Pajé (see below bin 1125) that produces one of their great wines. Alfredo and his son, Luca, now run the estate, and operate in a very traditional way. Sam and I recently tried this separately at a tasting - he circled it with the simple word outstanding. I likewise circled it and wrote agreed.
|2011 Barolo Bricco Viole, VAJRA
Packed elegant fruit, goes on and on - high class modern Barolo
|2011 Barolo La Pira, Alfredo & Luca Roagna
One of our finds of the year for certain, but make sure it has been decanted. Macerations and fermentations are long and large oak casks rather than barriques are the order of the day. Most of the estate is run organically. The vineyards are old and the wines are left un-manipulated to reflect the complexity of the soils and the old vine fruit. As recent blind tasting noted cracking wine, no one guessed what it was - calcaire minerality is this burgundy?
|2010 Barbera DAlba, Bricco dei Merli, Elvio Cogno
Spends about a year in large Slavonian barrels (not new) and is full of rounded yet structured fruit. The vines are planted high up (520 metres above sea level) in Berri, near La Morra on sandy chalky soil where there is excellent exposure. Yields are low and the wine is very concentrated but the acid is concentrated too and there is great freshness and precision running through the wine.
|2010 Barolo Vigna del Gris, Conterno Fantino
Conterno Fantino is a wine producer based in Piedmont in northwest Italy. It was established by Claudio Conterno and Guido Fantino in 1982, and is based on a hillside close to the village of Monforte d'Alba. The focus of the estate falls to four key grape varieties: Nebbiolo, Barbera, Dolcetto and Chardonnay. The estate makes three Barolo DOCG wines from the Ginestra and Mosconi cru vineyards.
|2008 Boca, Le Piane
Christoph Kunzli, originally a Swiss wine importer, was introduced to the tiny and little known region of Boca by Paolo di Marchi, owner of the famous Chianti estate, Isole e Olena in 1998. Located in the highest and most north-eastern part of Piedmont the region has a rich history of winemaking up until the 1950s when investment turned from vineyards to textiles. In the 19th century the Boca region boasted almost 40,000 hectares of vines, but by the 1990s had dwindled to less than 10, leaving it all but abandoned and largely forgotten, with most of the area returning to woodland. Vineyard practices are leading towards becoming biodynamic, as well as non-interventionist in the winery, to make the wines 'by his mouth' rather than by science. Sweet black cherries, grilled herbs, menthol, spices and liquorice all blend together in this beautiful, totally vibrant wine. The balance of focus and power is simply stunning. A small estate that seems to be ratcheting up quality with each passing vintage, and rave reviews. One of the attributes of Nebbiolo-based wines from northern Piedmont is that they are often easy to drink when young, yet also age effortlessly for years, sometimes decades.
|2006 Barolo, Margheria, Massolino
More traditional style, aged Barolo at its best silky almost burgundian!
|2004 Barolo Case Nere, Enzo Boglietti
Sweet, deeply spiced but aromatic dark red fruit. Wonderfully ripe yet fresh sweet fruit. Great depth and yet still aromatic on the mid palate despite its length and power. A touch of oaky spice. Very, very long. Outstanding!
|Pinot Noirs - New World
The red Burgundy grape, but is grown to mixed affect outside France. New Zealand seems to be leading the way in terms of truly emulating the qualities that we so admire from Burgundy.
|2015 Outerlimits, MONTES ZAPALLAR VINEYARD - CHILE
Bright fruit, silky tanins and a lingering cherry finish.
|2013 Domain Road - Central Otago, New Zealand
From South New Zealand. An excellent Pinot with ripe strawberries and plums.
|2013 Saintsbury, Caneros - California
A ripe and textured palate. Red fruit and spice with a weighty finish.
|2013 Greywacke - Marlborough, New Zealand
Yet another award winning wine From Kevin Judd! Imagine a black forest gateaux made with marinated black cherries and very ripe blackberries. The palate is dense and generous with ripe cherry-plum richness, some soft liquorice and clove and a fine but voluptuous tannin structure.
|2013 Tinkers Field Mature Vine, Rippon Vineyards - Central Otago, NZ
Juicier than Emma's Block 2013 and with more obvious appeal. Fleshy wonderfully aromatic, with the sweet, floral perfume of old English roses and red cherries leading into a supremely elegant, multi-layered, silky textured palate. Exhilarating. Real throb on the persistent finish.
|2012 Isabelle, Au Bon Climat - Santa Barbara, California
A dark rich Pinot Noir with a length finish. Typifies how California differs from the other New World producers.
|2012 Bell Hill - Canterbury New Zealand
Bell Hill uses the Burgundian model of vineyard architecture. This method encourages smaller yields and higher quality. The 2012 is very youthful with lovely brooding dried herb, savoury and spicy notes moving to briar and blueberry, only 1800 bottles were produced. A sleeper, take time with it!
|2009 `Tout Pres` By Farr - Geelong, Australia
From their base in Geelong, around 80 kilometres southwest of Melbourne, Gary Farr and his son Nick make small quantities of single vineyard Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that rank with Australia's best. Gary Farr has made wine in Australia (at Bannockburn) and Burgundy (he worked 10 vintages at Domaine Dujac) since the early 1980s. Classic nose of well-integrated fruit, earth, whole bunch and oak characters. Very fine tannins are supported with plum and spiced fruit with a super long and fine palate. It is tight at the time tasting, well-structured with layer after layer of flavour. This wine speaks of not only its unique site but of the Farr's thumbprint: a steel fist in a velvet glove.
|Pinot Noirs - Affordable Burgundy
More Affordable Burgundy - delicious on the palate, more palatable on the pocket! The cost of Burgundy just goes in one direction, UP! Making it less and less affordable for wine lovers, as world-wide demand for these wonderful wines carries on unabated. What we have tried to do on this page, in addition to having a fabulous selection of wines from the Macon/Chalonais regions, is introduce wines from the classic villages from top producers but listing their generic wines, where the grapes used are from vines deemed to be too young, or from vineyards next door to the village classified wines but perhaps on the lower slopes. Whatever the reason, the wines listed below are delicious on the palate, and more palatable on the pocket!
|2012 Bourgogne Rouge Domaine Sylvain Cathiard
Sylvain Cathiard elevated this domaine to one of the most sought-out names in Burgundy. His son Sébastien is now very much in charge and has evolved the luxuriant style to one that adds an increasing purity and precision of vineyard expression. The Cathiard estate is roughly four hectares in size, with excellent parcels of Villages and Premier Crus in Vosne-Romanée as well as Nuits-Saint Georges. The domaine boasts almost a full hectare of vines in Aux Malconsorts which is considered to be of Grand Cru quality by many commentators. It is the inherent quality of fruit that shines through in the wines of this estate, something that can be attributed to very careful sorting and minimal intervention in the cellar. Tasting these wines is always a joy; they are invariably expressive from barrel yet they also have the backbone and power to age gracefully over time.
|Village of Nuit-St-Georges
|2013 Bourgogne Rouge Les Grands Chaillots, Dom. Thibault Ligier-Belair
Thibault set up his domaine at the start of the century and then a couple of years later established his négociant venture to work alongside it. Both are run organically with biodynamic practices. For Thibault it is virtually all about the vineyard and what he does in the cellars is done merely to enhance what the vineyards are imparting. Thibault is both passionate and meticulous. He even chooses which trees he wants his barrels to be made from, even though new oak is not a big player in his cellar. But this attention to detail and fine tuning is what has helped Thibaults wines progress so quickly on an upward trajectory. The Bourgogne comes from a parcel of vines almost thirty years old that lie just in front of Nuits best vineyard, Les St-Georges. He has just under a hectareand it is a very serious Bourgogne.
|Village of Pommard
|2010 Bourgogne Pinot Noir, Domaine de Courcel
The domaine is one of the largest holders of Pommard 1er Crus and includes a huge five hectares of the excellent Grand Clos des Epenots. Yves likes to pick late to ensure maximum ripeness, no bad thing in an appellation where phenolic ripeness is key. The grapes undergo a cold soak before a low temperature fermentation. The Bourgogne is a serious wine that will rival many village Pommards. It has an ability to achieve great ripeness and intensity and the aromatics can be so seductive. Its not cheap but then its not your average Bourgogne.
|Pinot Noirs - Burgundy
Unlike Bordeaux, Burgundy has a continental climate, and grows just one grape variety ? Pinot Noir; There are no myriad of Chateaux with their own vineyards, but here in this roll-call of evocative sounding names, are blocks or strips of vines tended by a multiplicity of owners, some grand but mostly modest. It is not enough to know the village and vineyard names, more important to Burgundy, is the name and reputation of the producer.
|Cote de Nuit travelling from the north to south
In general are weightier, firmer and more deeply-coloured than Cte de Beaune. The vineyards of Cte de Nuits are spread throughout 8 villages, from Dijon to Corgoloin, with 3000 hectares under production. The red wines represent 92% of production and are made up of Pinot Noir. The white wines, produced from Chardonnay, represent only 8% of production.
|2011 Marsannay Rouge, Domaine Joseph Roty
|2014 Fixin, Domaine Denis Berthaut
|2012 Gevrey-Chambertin, Domaine Confuron-Cotetidot
|2010 Gevrey-Chambertin Champs Chenys, Domaine Joseph Roty
|2006 Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru 'La Combe Aux Moines' Domaine Faiveley
|2011 Morey-St-Denis, Domaine Stéphane Magnien
|2005 Morey-St-Denis 1er Cru Les Loups, Domaine des Lambrays
|2011 Chambolle Musigny 1er Cru Charmes Domaine Hudelot-Noëllat
|2000 Vougeot Les Cras 1er Cru, Domaine de la Vougeraie
|2007 Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru, Domaine de Montille
|2010 Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Les Beaux Monts, Domaine Etienne Grivot
|2008 Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Chaumes, Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux
|2013 Nuits-St-Georges Domaine Henri Gouges
|2010 Nuits-St-Georges 1er Cru, Clos de Forets Domaine LArlot
|Cote de Beaune travelling from the north to south
Côte de Beaune has a more expansive feel and gentler slopes than the Côte de Nuits. Its Pinot Noirs generally have softness and finesse.
|2014 Aloxe Corton 'Les Valozières' Domaine Gérard Julien
|2011 Chorey-Lès-Beaune, Domaine Tollot-Beaut
|2013 Savigny-lès-Beaune `Aux Grands Liards, Domaine Lebreuil
|2011 Beaune Les Blanches Fleurs, Domaine Tollot-Beaut
|2006 Beaune 1er Cru 'Les Sizies' Domaine Prunier Bonheur
|2006 Beaune 1er Cru 'Clos de L'Ecu' Domaine Faiveley
|2013 Pommard, Chanterêves - (one to watch - Jancis Robinson)
|2011 Pommard, 1er Cru Fremiers, Domaine Jean-Marc & Thomas Bouley
|2003 Pommard, 1er Cru Grand Clos des Epenots, Domaine Courcel
|2013 Volnay, Domaine Michel Lafarge
|2010 Volnay 1er Cru Chevret, Domaine Nicolas Rossignol
|1999 Volnay 1er Cru, Clos Des Chênes, Domaine Potinet-Ampeau
|2008 Auxey Duresses, Domaine Coche-Dury
|2012 St Aubin 1er Cru, Derrière Chez Edouard, Domaine Hubert Lamy
|2013 Maranges 1er Cru La Fussière, Domaine Bertrand Bachelet
|Deeper, stronger more intense flavours Fine Italian - Tuscany
|2013 Rosso di Montalcino, Ginestreto Fuligni
A textbook example of the early drinking Sangiovese alternative to big brother Brunello made in the Montalcino zone, this has such keen and succulent cherry fruit, a touch of nut and autumnal earthiness, a subtle rasp of tannin, and bags of fresh acidity. Fuligni's wines have reached international recognition for their purity of expression, strong backbone of acidity and polished tannins. This winery represents simply some of the finest wines of Brunello, epitomising all that is great from the region.
|2011 Calestaia, Azienda Agricola Roccapesta, Morellino di Scansano
Alberto Tanzini worked in finance in London for several years before heading back to his native Italy to become a vigneron. He bought what is now the Roccapesta estate in 2003. From day one he was anxious to focus on Sangiovese and 90% of the vineyards are planted with 8 different clones of this variety. Calestaia which has the potential to age for many years, is full of character and personality. Complex and refined.
|2011 Il Carbonaione, Poggio Scaletti
The 2011 Carbonaione is another gorgeous wine in a line of successful vintages that goes all the way back to 1992. Blackberry jam, cloves, menthol, licorice, new leather and sweet spices flesh out in a voluptuous, racy wine that beautifully expresses the personality of the vintage.
|2011 Le Serre Nuove, Tenuta dell'Ornellaia, Bolgheri
Tenuta dell'Ornellaia is one of the foremost producers in the Bolgheri appellation on the coast of Tuscany, particularly known for making one of Italy's most famous and expensive wines, Ornellaia - one of the original Super Tuscans. Le Serre Nuove is the second wine of Ornellaia. Inky dark appearance, but abundantly intense aromas of blackberry, dried cherry, rum cake, leather, moist pipe tobacco and chewy black licorice. Very seductive and impressive.
|2010 Brunello di Montalcino, Fattoria La Gerla
Fattoria La Gerla is based in Montalcino, in the central Italian region of Tuscany. The estate is exclusively planted to the Sangiovese grape variety. Sergio Rossi purchased the estate from Biondi Santi in 1976 and to this day it is still owned and run by the Rossi family. Concentrated ruby with orange tinges. Complex, brooding nose with hints of candied fruit. Lots of ripe, creamy fruit, possesses concentration and plenty of length.
|2010 Scrio, Le Macchiole
Scrio was born in 1994, from the desire of Eugenio Campolmi to produce a wine with the purest possible vision of the grape variety he loved: Syrah. This is one of the few Syrah wines made in Bolgheri which expresses itself differently from classic French Syrah. A limited production, never exceeding 5,000 bottles, this wine is a result of a rigorous selection of the best grapes attainable, harvest after harvest, from our vineyards. The word Scrio has Tuscan origins meaning: pure, sincere, upright. It is typically used to refer to people and indicating a purity of mind.
|2009 Montevertine, Azienda Agricola Montevertine
Firm yet well-integrated tannins support expressive sweet red cherries, freshly cut flowers and mint. The 2009 is a highly attractive, pointed Montevertine that oozes class and elegance.
|2007 Terriccio, Castello del Terriccio
The 2007 Castello del Terriccio is another striking wine from Terriccio. Blackberries, spices, liquorice, violets and tar are woven together in a seamless fabric of notable elegance and sheer class. The perception of tannin is barely noticeable. You will be tempted to drink this young, but my sense is that the wine will go on for much longer! The blend is 50% Syrah, 25% Petit Verdot and 25% other red grapes. Highly rated in the Wine Advocate Robert Parker.
|2006 Le Cupole, Tenuta di Trinoro, Maremma
Predominantly Cabernet Franc, Spicy, lively palate of strawberry, black cherry and plum. Excellent length. Refreshing acidity. Supple tannins.
|1997 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva, Costant
Brunello is usually a medium full-bodied wine with both strong acidity and tannins that support leathery, subtly spicy tones of coffee and tobacco that add depth to the classic plum and dark cherry fruits.
|Deeper, stronger more intense flavours Fine Italian ? Verona
|2013 Amarone, La Giuva
50% Corvina, 20% Corvinone, 25% Rondinella and 5% Oseleta. The balance, concentration and intensity mark this wine out from the crowd in Valpolicella!
|2009 Amarone Pietro Dal Cero, Ca dei Frati
Deep ruby red colour with black cherries, chocolate and sweet spices, aromas of balsamic notes emerge to reveal aniseed and wild mint aromas, This wine has great body and acidity, prominent yet supple tannins. The finish is long and rounded with delicate hints of coffee and sweet tobacco.
|2008 Amarone della Valpolicella Monte Sant'Urbano, Speri
Speri Viticoltori is a family-owned wine estate with a history dating back to the early part of the 19th Century in Italy's renowned Valpolicella wine region. It is known for its high-quality wines, planted on 60 hectares (148 acres) of land in Valpolicella's classico viticultural area. The vines occupy some of the most renowned terroir of this region, around notable villages like Fumane, Marano and Negrar. The vineyards are planted on traditional stone terraces that enjoy a mild climate moderated by nearby Lake Garda. The estate's flagship wine is the Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG.
|2011 La Poja, Allegrini
A full bodied, intense and elegant red from 100% Corvina. Gorgeous cherry and tobacco notes on the nose with Christmas cake overtones and some sweet oak
When the Crown reopened its doors in November 2003, I remember being particularly nervous about my desire to create a wine list of difference. Looking back now, I wish I had been even bolder - more eclectic! Easy to say now - with money dramatically dwindling at the time! One area affected was Spain - sticking to names and my own comfort zone. I have now started building a collection that truly matches the great strides this country has made in modernising their wine industry. A recent article read, typifies my personal approach to buying Spanish wine "...after Switzerland, the most mountainous country in Europe. Furthermore for over 2,700 years all Spanish regions have grown vines.....this helps to explain the glorious complexity of this country's wine styles". I have tried - or at least started - to reflect the originality, diversity that makes Spain today the most exciting wine country in Europe.
|2013 Vinyes Velles, Ferrer Bobet, Priorat, Catalonia
Priorat is still one of the trendiest wine regions in Spain. In Priorat the grape varieties Cariñena and Garnacha dominate (not Tempranillo). Quality is top priority, which you only recognize when you visit the UFO looking winery. Built on three levels with the aim to give the wine as little stress as possible everything is run by gravity. The wines of Ferrer Bobet have become much coveted not only related to the small production volume but also to the good ratings. The Vinyes Velles consists of 70% Cariñena and 30% Garnacha (the vines are 70 to 90 years old).
|2010 Mauro, Bodegas Mauro, Castilla y León
Mariano García, the legendary winemaker of Vega Sicilia (from 1968 to 1998), started Mauro rather quietly in 1978 as a small side-line project secretly making the wine in a garage on the Vega estate. He chose to buy and plant vineyards considerably further west than anyone else in Ribera del Duero and found that he was somewhat arbitrarily excluded from the 1982 Denominacíon Origen on geographical grounds. Thankfully, however, the wines reputation remained unscathed and Marianos estate is considered among the top ten in Ribera. Dark crimson, clean fruit aged in oak. Lots of life and vivacity.
|2010 Finca Dofí, Alvaro Palacios, Priorat, Catalonia
Established in 1990 by Alvaro Palacios himself, the winery has been forefront of Priorat's rise to fame as one of Spain's most prestigious wine regions. Palacios grew up in Rioja where his family makes wines under the Palacios Remondo name. After spending time working at Petrus in Pomerol, he bought his own vineyard in the then-obscure region of Priorat. Expressive and fragrant, heady nose of dark berry fruit, good freshness and balance, with a dense core of fruit and ripe tannins. Rounded with a lightness of touch that gives this full-bodied wine elegance.
|2010 Viña del Olivo, Contino, Rioja
Meaty, rich red fruit. Smooth yet chunky. Gutsy! Modern and slick. A nose of cedar spices and smoke swirls around a rich plum and blackberry fruit core. The palate is unashamedly powerful, but behind its broad shoulders there is something rather more subtle, supple and enticing the richness gives way to vibrant, fragrant red fruit and floral flavours, supported by excellent freshness. Superb!
|2009 Numanthia, Bodega Numanthia Termes, Toro
Only recently bottled as single vineyard. Very deep colour, has the Tempranillo sweetness of fruit. More earthy, perhaps even riper slightly raisined character. More leather. More velvety but thick tannins. More burly. Lots of spice and polished!
|2004 Imperial Reserva, CVNE, Rioja
This wine is dominated by Tempranillo, Maturation in new French and American oak and one has to wait patiently for 24 months prior to bottling. The nose is impressive in both depth and elegance, The palate continues the theme of black fruit with plum and morello cherry in evidence, but a warmth akin to spice-box on the finish is a welcome surprise.ÿ
|1994 Gran Reserva 904, La Rioja Alta, Rioja
La Rioja Alta continues to be one of the benchmarks for traditionally produced Rioja. This estate is renowned for the quality of its Gran Reservas, 904 and 890, which are only produced in exceptional years. The superb 1994 vintage is just beginning to unfurl and, with aeration, it shows notes of wild strawberry, charcoal and cigar smoke. This is a complex and intense in an understated way, needs decanting and ideally two or three more years in the bottle.
|Bordeaux blends - non Bordeaux
|2012 Lytton Springs, Ridge Vineyards - California
Bramble, raspberry, cassis, toasted oak, and floral aromas; layered black cherry and currant, full bodied with well coated tannins and notes of liquorice and black olive on the finish.
|2012 Mai, Kaiken Malbec - Mendoza, Argentina
This attractive Malbec comes from 100 year old vines, giving it a more of an ?old world? feel. It?s no surprise it has powerful intensity and vibrant purple colour. On the nose it has clear mineral and spicy notes. Aromas of black fruits, mature cherry, hints of vanilla and coffee An elegant, powerful wine with great structure, roundness and persistence
|2012 Petit Verdot, Snowden Vineyards - Napa Valley
Diana Seysses (Snowden) winemaker at Domaine Dujac no less took over the reins at the family estate in 2005. Whether Burgundy influence or feminine touch these wines have a sense of place, not the blockbusters that some produce in Napa and perhaps appeal more to a European palate than to their own domestic market. Whatever it is - there is an undeniable elegance to these wines. The other vital factor is the hillside of this St Helena property. The steepness of the slopes would not ripen the grapes to the level of those on the valley floor, hence these grapes have always been sought after - during the early 1990s they were sold off to Silver Oak, Caymus and Stags Leap. Bottling under the Snowden name began in 1993 but the rapid improvement in quality has happened in the past ten years. Petit Verdot, of which only 66 cases were made is very much in its infancy. This is a massive wine, rich, round and velvety.
|2008 Dominus Napanook, Christian Mouiex - Napa Valley
Owned by Christian Mouiex of Chateau Petrus fame, produced in the oldest vineyard in Napa first planted in 1836. Easy drinking, ripe silky tannins and lively fruit expression.
|2002 Le Sommet, Mont du Toit - South Africa (Low Stock)
Produced only in exceptional years, in very limited quantities. Cabernet based but the exact blend of this wine remains undisclosed, but impresses every time. Powerful, deliciously complex wine, with a fine balance of fruit, structure and freshness.
|2000 Cabernet Sauvignon, Cyril Henschke - Eden Valley, Australia
Not necessarily the greatest vintage, but still decent, and when it comes to Henschke youre on very safe ground. When last tried the bouquet was flooded with clean, fragrant blackcurrant and cassis fruit; quite lush fruit marks the entry through to the mid palate, then becomes much finer and more elegant towards the finish. A significant success for the vintage. Please let us know your thoughts on this!
|2010 Château Clarendale, Bordeaux Rouge
|2009 Château Moulin Pey-Labrie, Canon-Fronsac
|2009 Château Potensac, Medoc
|2005 Château La Garricq, Moulis, Medoc
|Bordeaux - Left Bank
|2009 Château Tronquoy Lalande, St Estephe
|2003 Château Cos Labory, Grand Cru Class St Estephe
|2006 Château Tronquoy Lalande, St Estephe
|2005 Château Lafon Rochet, Grand Cru Classé, St Estephe
|2009 Réserve Léoville-Barton, (Château Léoville-Barton 2nd wine)
|2004 Les Fiefs de Lagrange, St Julien (Chteau Lagrange 2nd wine)
|2003 La Croix de Beaucaillou, St. Julien (Ducru-Beaucaillou 2nd wine)
|2002 Château Léoville-Barton, Grand Cru Classé
|1995 Château Branaire Ducru, Grand Cru Classé
|2012 Vivens, Margaux
|2009 Château Malescot-St-Exupery, Grand Cru Classé
|2005 Château dAngludet, Grand Cru Classe
|2000 Château Durfort-Vivens, Grand Cru Classe Margaux
|2005 Château Grand Puy Lacoste, Grand Cru Class Pauillac
|2003 Château Pontet Canet, Grand Cru Class Pauillac
|1995 Château Branaire-Ducru, Grand Cru Classé
|1978 Château Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Grand Cru Class Pauillac
|2009 Château Larrivet Haut-Brion
|Bordeaux Right Bank
|2012 Château La Croix Bonneau, Montagne St-Emilion
|2009 Château Petit-Figeac St-Emilion (Chteau Figeac 2nd wine)
|2000 Château Magdelaine, Grand Cru Classé
|2008 Château Les Cruzelles
|2005 Château La Grave
|1999 Pensées de Lafleur
|En Magnum, Jeroboam & Methuselah
|2015 St-Aubin Blanc 1er Cru Clos de la Chatenière, Domaine Hubert Lamy
|2012 Merlot Rutherford, Frog's Leap - Napa Valley
|2010 Château Clarendale, Bordeaux Rouge (Haut-Brion)
|2010 Château le Crock - St Estephe, Bordeaux
|2010 Crozes Hermitage, Alain Graillot - Rhone
|2009 Chambolle Musigny, Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux Cote de Nuits
|2005 Château Haut Bages Liberal, Grand Cru Classé - Pauillac
|2011 Quinta do Noval LBV
|Sandeman 20 Year Old Tawny Port
|1998 Fonseca, Guimaraens
|2011 Moscato dAsti, CONTERO ITALY (½ bottle - 375ml)
A delicious grapey sparkling wine, low in alcohol - 5.5% - glorious as an aperitif as much as a digestif.
|2014 Maury Expression - Mas de Lavail (½ bottle - 375ml)
Red pudding wine great with chocolate, berry fruit & blue cheese, whiff of summer pudding about it, not over powering sweetness, lovely refinement about it.
|2015 Jurançon, DOMAINE BELLEGARDE (½ bottle - 375ml)
Certified Organic. A great all-rounder ie Foie Gras/Blue Cheese/Dessert, but not too cloying, lovely beguiling bouquet of candied fruits and luscious, taffeta-textured palate of honeyed peaches.
|2014 Noble Semillon, Mitchell - Oz (½ btl - 375ml)
Classic botrytis affected dessert wine displaying characteristic honey and marmalade concentrated sweet fruit, balanced by crisp acidity on a lingering luscious finish.
|2013 Château Doisy-Vedrines, Grand cru Classe SAUTERNES (½ bottle - 375ml)
A classic sauterne perfect for blue cheese and sponge based puddings
|Chambers Rutherglen Muscat VICTORIA, OZ (½ bottle - 375ml)
Layers of intense raisin and fig, orange peel and dried fruit. A vibrant fruit-driven palate, to be enjoyed with creamy cheeses and rich desserts.
|Pedro Ximinez, Sanchez Romate - Spain (½ bottle - 375ml)
Thick & sweet. Molten brown sugar with a hint of roses. Christmas pudding in a glass! Poor this over some vanilla ice cream shouts Pedro in my ear!
|2015 Valpollicella Recioto, Tesauro, Cantina Valpantena - Italy (½ bottle - 375ml)
Intense ruby red colour, with delicate aromas of blackberry jam and spicy hints on the nose. Absolute heavenly match with a rich cholate dessert
|2012 Soave Recioto, Le Colombare, Pieropan - Italy (½ bottle - 375ml)
Recioto di Soave has a perfectly balance palate, with just the right level of delicate sweetness offset by a fresh acidity. Lovely, rich, almost exotic fruit on the palate, with a baked peach character and a long perfumed finish.