Here at Exel Wines we are proud to be a team of dedicated and passionate individuals who love what we do. We want our customers to enjoy the world of wines and spirits as much as we do. We source products from every far flung corner of the globe to ensure that we offer an extensive range encompassing everything from the perennial favourites to the slightly more unusual. You are welcome to browse our range in peaceful contemplation but should you wish to talk to us or if there is a particular wine you’ve been struggling to find elsewhere, please feel free to get in touch. You can call us on 01738 493535 or email us atand we will do our very best to help you.
Exel Wines is an independent company based in Perth, Scotland where we have a shop as well as our main warehouse and offices. The shop at 47 South St is a small but perfectly formed Aladdin’s Cave of fine wine, rare whisky, all manner of spirits and liqueurs as well as some carefully selected Scottish beers and ciders. The staff are knowledgeable and friendly – they relish the opportunity to spend time chatting to like-minded people and are always happy to help.
** ALAS NOW ALL GONE - WE EXPECT TO TAKE DELIVERY OF THE AWARD-WINNING 2011 SOON! **
Awarded 96 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2019 edition review of 2010 Riojas (see blue link below).
"I bought six of these and unfortunately I have given three away to friends. We opened it last night and decanted as per the instructions of your shop staff. The wine is truly spectacular and I am working out how to break in to my friend's flat to steal back the wine I gave him. I have never been moved to comment on a bottle of wine by email. Thank you for the spectacular experience. Another 6 please. I won't be as generous with the next lot!"
- regular (anonymous) Perth customer [who ultimately bought another 12]
Bodegas Olarra was created in 1973. Situated on the outskirts of the city of Logroño in Rioja Alta, their winery – a Y-shaped building designed to make optimum use of the space for both production and ageing of the wine – is known as “the Cathedral of La Rioja”. From the beginning, the winery has known how to combine the traditional methods of production and ageing with the most advanced modern techniques of viticulture and vinification. A favourable geographic location, gives the vineyards all the ingredients to produce good fruits. Indeed the clay and chalky soil is watered by the rain and the Ebro river. This area also benefits from warm sunshine and the influence of the Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts. In 1978, Bodegas Olarra achieved their first Gold medal for a Cerro Añon wine in the tenth International Wines and Spirits Competition in the UK. Numerous awards followed from then on, proof of the outstanding quality of their wines.
Grapes for the Gran Reserva are drawn solely from Olarra vineyards; these are located primarily in Rioja Alta, but also in Rioja Alavesa to a lesser extent. Vines in these vineyards are all grown in the traditional way. The average age of the vines is over 30 years. Most of the vineyards sit on a clay-rich soil in Rioja Alta and on limestone-clay soils in Rioja Alavesa.
Harvests took place later than usual in 2010, well into late October, when the fruit was considered to have reached full ripeness; this slower, steadier ripening accounts for much of the quality of this harvest (generally) and the 2010 Gran Reserva (in the specific). Subsequent selection ensured that only grapes in healthy shape made it through to the vinification process. 2010 was a great year in the history of the quality of grapes on the Olarra estate.
Tempranillo 80%, Mazuelo 10%, Garnacha 5%, Graciano 5%.
Fermentation and maceration lasted for a total of 19 days and were performed in stainless steel vats at a controlled temperature of 28ºC. Later on, the wine was racked into new French (Allier) oak, 225-litre casks/barricas where the malolactic fermentation took place, followed by a stay on the lees for a little over two months, with regular batonnage.
By the end of that winter, the wine was already being racked into new oak barrels, where it remained for a further six months. After this, the rest of the oak ageing - up to the total 27 months - was conducted in different barrels again: Allier and American (Missouri) oak, all with a medium toast, and with different ages spanning from brand new to 5 years. After fining with egg whites, the wine was bottled and stored in Olarra's bottle cellar for 45 months, before it started to be released.
The Gran Reserva 2010 shows a deep red colour with shades of ruby on the rim of the glass. On the nose, at the time of original release, it revealed a delicate balance between ripe red berry aromas and those of spices and smokiness. Over time, this developmental bouquet has grown more complex, showing aromas of leather, tobacco, coffee beans and raisins. On the palate, it is full and round, thanks to its long period in the bottle. Mouthfeel is as firm, elegant and smooth as one should expect from a great Rioja Gran Reserva, with a surprisingly long and fresh finish.
ABV = 14.0% (NB: the figure stated in the Decanter review is incorrect, based on the value stated on the bottle).
** IT'S BACK AND IN STOCK!! **
Awarded 98 points and ultra-rare Exceptional status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their July 2017 edition review of Grower Champagne (see blue links below).
This is quite some Champagne and remarkable for the price. The varietal mix is equal thirds of the classic trio of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. Grapes are grown only on vineyards of Premier Cru villages (you'd easily clear £30 a bottle for this privilege normally) on the Coteaux de Cumières and Hautvillers in the Marne Valley, yielding great intensity and concentration.
Based on reserve wines from 2013 (70%) and 2011 & 2012 (30%). Spends over 4 years sur lie/on its lees before disgorgement.
At 7g/l of dosage/residual sugar, this is at the drier end of Brut, but the fruit ripeness adds an exciting extra sensation of sweetness. Finally, Pierre Bertrand are rightly proud of their mousse onctueuse – smooth mousse – and we concur: it makes for a truly delicious Champagne experience.
One expects exhilarating acidity and and citrus zing in almost any Champagne - this does these in spades - but what makes it really stand out are both the ripeness of fruit flavours and the delicate florality of the nose. Pierre Bertrand see that fruitiness as “damson and pear” while we at Exel thought more “peach and nectarine”; either way, this is one seriously fruity mouthful. Florally, the makers go with “hawthorn flower” and we are not botanically inclined to disagree.
ABV = 12.5%.
** ONLY AVAILABLE FROM EXEL WINES! NOTE THAT THE DAUPHINS COTES DU RHONE CURRENTLY BEING BADGED BY TESCO AND ASDA AS THE 'RESERVE' ON THEIR WEBSITES IS CATEGORICALLY *NOT* THIS WINE/THE DWWA AWARD WINNER (this, we have confirmed with the producer). INDEED, YOU WILL NOTE THAT THE WORD 'RESERVE' DOES NOT APPEAR ON THEIR LABEL... **
Awarded a Platinum medal and 97 points at the 2019 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details).
Cellier des Dauphins was established in 1967 by the Union des Vignerons des Côtes du Rhône. Rather than being a producer in its own right, it encompasses a major co-operative network of grape-growers and winemakers throughout the southern Rhône valley. The Cellier des Dauphins vineyards lie in the Rhône Valley, the foothills of the southern Alps rising in the distance. In these terroirs, sun-drenched vines swaying in the southern breeze, grow the renowned grape varieties that have made the Côtes du Rhône famous: Syrah, Grenache, Viognier and many other regional grapes.
The network comprises over 2,500 families and 12,500 hectares of production land across 20 of the main Southern Rhône appellations, among them Plan de Dieu, Puyméras and Valréas. Exceptional terroirs produce the most illustrious crus: Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Vacqueyras, Vinsobres and Cairanne.
Such diversity of both grape varieties and terroirs enables the Cellier's winemakers to produce aromatic blended wines of great complexity, of which this Côtes du Rhône rouge is a standout example.
For greater detail on this wine, see the blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the team at Cellier des Dauphins.
80% Grenache, 20% Syrah.
This wine displays a deep red hue with ruby tints and notes of sun-ripened black fruit on the nose. The palate offers a velvety texture and spicy notes underpinned by ripe black fruit, blackcurrants and black cherries. A more modern take on the traditional Côtes du Rhône style, this wine combines structure, freshness and smooth tannins. It has a seductively elegant, intense and long-lingering finish.
or, as the DWWA19 panel put it:
"This is delicious! Very classy and appealing aromas of flowers, garrigue, spice and forest floor. On the palate sweet vanilla oak marries into the charming and svelte herbal, red and blue fruit mix. It's full of flavour, super supple, super drinkable and authentic. Bouquet, taste, finish: all are magnificent!".
ABV = 13.5%.
** AVAILABLE AGAIN! **
Awarded 95 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2019 edition panel tasting of Chilean Pinot Noir (see blue link below).
Established in 2002, (Viña) Tabalí is a pioneer and iconic winery situated in Limarí, on the edge of the Atacama Desert in one of the northernmost vineyard regions of Chile. They were one of the first wineries to settle in Limarí and their wines faithfully reflect their place of origin in which climate and soils play a fundamental role, and bring out the potential of each of their vineyards.
After years of geological research, Tabalí is the only winery that producers wines that cross Chile from east to west in the same valley, from their incredibly high and remote site of Roca Madre (second highest vineyard in Chile) in the Andes Mountains' Rio Hurtado area down to their cool climate, Camanchaca fog-blanketed vineyards by the Pacific Ocean. In their quest for the perfection, they now also have a site in the renowned Cabernet and Merlot region of Maipo Valley. The result is a range of truly distinctive wines with elegance, restraint and minerality. In 2014, winemaker Felipe Müller was named Chilean Young Winemaker of the Year and acclaimed for his ability to understand Tabali´s distinctive terroir and use it to create remarkable wines, unique to Chile.
The Talinay vineyard is located just 12 km from the Pacific Ocean, hidden away in a small side-valley of Limari. This unique location provides truly excellent conditions for cool-climate viticulture and is (believed to be) the only vineyard site in Chile to be planted over pure chalk/limestone soil – producing elegant and refined wines. The constant breeze that drifts from the ocean and over the vines creates the coolest vineyards in Limari. Proximity to the dry Atacama desert ensures the vines are virtually rot and disease free. Maximum average temperatures in the summer months never go above 23.5°C which in terms of picking means 2 or 3 weeks later than other Chilean coastal regions. The small grapes were gently ripened by the cool summer days, freshened by the coastal breeze and the local autumn mist, the famous Camanchaca.
The fruit was hand-picked in April and underwent careful bunch selection by the viticulture team. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks using traditional vinification methods. The grapes were carefully selected by hand-first the bunches and then single grapes in order to be sure that only the best were fermented after a cold maceration for 7 days. Gentle manual pigeage (punching down of the vat's pomace/solids) took place daily to extract colour and flavours, finally a very short maceration after fermentation took place in order to enhance the taste profile on the palate. 100% malolactic fermentation took place in French oak barrels, followed by aging in barrel for 10 months.
For more detail, click the blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from Viña Tabalí themselves.
100% Pinot Noir.
Pretty crimson in colour. Crushed red cherry fruit and limestone minerality makes the aroma hugely alluring. The palate shows typical Talinay characteristics of bright, fresh fruit and finesse. A wine with great texture with full, finely balanced summer fruit flavours, balanced salty acidity and a persistent and captivating finish. Ideal with grilled lamb, roast duck, guinea fowl ... and well tested at Exel with cheese on toast (particularly good).
ABV = 13.5%.