Awarded 87 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2017 edition review of Amarones (see blue link below).
Deep garnet in the glass with an intense black cherry and vanilla bouquet. On the palate, it is full bodied, rich and creamy with smooth tannins. At 16% alcohol, it should really be a monster; in reality, it is fantastically balanced with a minerality which keeps it fresh and dangerously moreish.
Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their July 2017 edition review of Weekday Wines (under £25) (see blue link below).
A 'Joven-style' red exhibiting freshness and purity. Berry-bright and fresh with suggestion of cherry blossom, it has gentle fruit jelly glycerol up front, yielding to finely-grained crunchy tannins, with good length and gentle closing acidity.
Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2017 edition review of Amarones (see blue link below).
Deep and intense on the nose with perfumes of dried cherries and blueberries, with notes of spiced autumn fruit compote. On the palate it is powerful but modern, with a lovely balance of ripe tannins and spiced, concentrated savoury cherry fruit character. A touch of woodsmoke completes the long finish.
Awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2016 edition review of Argentina (see blue link below).
Fresh and delicate on the nose showing layers of red cherries and raspberries combined with herbal notes of wild rocket and thyme and a touch of minerality. On the palate it is elegant and supple with fine tannins providing structure. A graceful, complex, deep and structured wine with considerable length.
Awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2017 edition review of New World Cabernets (see blue link below).
Deep rich red in colour, the nose is intense with aromas of ripe cassis, liquorice, and some spicy leather notes, combined with fine smoky French oak. The palate is solid and structured with a fine tannin finish.
Awarded 96 points and Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their December 2016 edition review of 'Langton's Classification' (Australia's finest bottles) (see blue link below).
The Balnaves family vineyard is situated at the southern end of the famous Coonawarra 'Terra Rossa' strip. Planted in 1975, the vineyard is 48 hectares in size and has been in the family for three generations. The predominant variety planted is Cabernet Sauvignon. Winemaker Pete Bissell was the Qantas Winemaker of the Year 2005 and Balnaves was James Halliday's Winery of the Year in 2008.
Doug Balnaves was a shearer of Merino sheep. A shearer in Australia is paid by the number of sheep he shears. Counted every two hour period, the Tally is recorded in the Tally book. The higher the Tally, the greater the recognition among his peers for skill and hard work. As an expression of this tradition, the Balnaves family see the wine 'The Tally' as the ultimate achievement for their company.
The nose is lifted with perfumed red berries, violets and wild blackberry fruit coming from the Petit Verdot. The palate is medium bodied and restrained in style with tight dense fruit and a modulated structure showing balance and depth of fruit, flowing onto a long finish of chewy tannins. This is a compact but deeply flavoured Tally.
The 2016 vintage was awarded 89 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their July 2017 edition review of Rueda Verdejos (see blue link below). We appreciate it is subjective, but we judge the 2015 to be of equal quality and drinkability, and the 2016 will be coming (y)our way soon!
The special personality of Beronia Rueda Verdejo comes from the perfect unión of the Verdejo variety and the ‘cascajoso’ stony soil of the region. The vineyard, well ventilated, rich in calcium, magnesium and with excellent drainage, give this Beronia Rueda a unique character.
A wine produced from two different harvests in the same vineyard. An early harvest with fermentation at high temperatures in order to achieve an explosion of aromas and notes of ripe stone fruits. Then a second later harvest fermentated at lower temperatures looking for maturity and more concentration and complexity on the palate. The resulting wine is a blend of the two distinct winemaking techniques to achieve an aromatic wine which is fresh, flavoursome and, at the same time, complex.
Beronia Rueda 2015 shows a bright pale yellow colour with a hint of green. An intense nose with vibrant and persistant herbal, grassy aromas, typical of Verdejo. On the palate it is full, fruity and dry with a long finish. This 2015 vintage shows and extremely textured mouth due to the quality of the skins giving fine lees. The wine has a balanced acidity and an attractive bitterness that is characteristic of this variety.
This wine should always be served chilled. Ideal with salads or fish, also with white or lean meat dishes.
Awarded 88 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their June 2017 edition review of Australian 'value' Shiraz (see blue link below).
The Reserve Shiraz is deepest dark red with a very youthful and vibrant garnet hue. The aromas are powerful and complex with a wealth of fruit ranging from ripe black cherries and blackberries with hints of eucalypt and spice. The rich and full palate displays soft flavours of plum skin, mulberry and hints of vanilla and blackberry, These abundant flavours are underpinned by fine vanilla from the oak and defined by exciting spicy tannins.
Awarded 96 points and a rare Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2017 edition review of New World Cabernet Sauvignons (see blue link below).
Sourced from vineyards in the prized Terra Rossa region of Coonawarra: here the warm days are moderated by offshore breezes and the rich red loam over well-draining limestone soils are the foundations for Coonawarra's justified reputation for producing premium-quality Cabernet Sauvignon grapes.
This Coonawarra beauty has an intense, ripe berry bouquet with hints of chocolate and liquorice. The palate is brimming with crushed blackcurrant fruit flavours enhanced by subtle eucalyptus and mint notes characteristic of this region and is beautifully complemented by elegant French oak notes.
Awarded 86 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their June 2017 edition review of Australian Value Shiraz (see blue link below).
The vibrant dark cherry fruit typifies the area that this wine is from in Padthaway, South Australia and is the backbone of this wine. Blackberry, plum and mocha are also evident, creating a palate that is rich and soft. This wine was matured in French oak for approximately 4 to 6 months before being filtered and blended for bottling. It is a wine that has been made to drink now but will cellar for around 5 years.
Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2017 edition review of premium Riojas (see blue link below).
Bodegas Urbina is a winery which has been in the Urbina family for four generations since 1870. The present winery was designed, built and run by the family in 1986 and was created to facilitate producing fine wines. Urbina has 75 hectares of vineyards located at two main vineyard sites - the first is at Cuzcurrita de Rio Turon, a well-known area for producing Riojas capable of ageing for many years and the others are at Uruñuela, in the heart of the Rioja DOC, which consistently produces wines of great quality and body. The grapes used are from vines aged over 20 years old. The vines are grown in accordance with traditional practices, no herbicides and limited use of pesticides and fungicides.
The Urbina Gran Reserva is harvested by hand and the skins remain in contact with the must for 28 days. It is then fermented at a temperature of 28°C using indigenous yeast. The wine is matured for 24 months in American oak before being bottled and matured for another 48 months before being released for sale.
The Urbina Gran Reserva 1996 has a splendid ripe, complex nose, is reddish-garnet in colour with harmonious and well-balanced oak and fruit tannins. It also displays intense rich fruit, great finesse and velvet smoothness on the palate. It goes perfectly with slow roasted lamb shoulder or with game - particularly duck and pheasant.
Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2017 edition review of premium Rioja (see blue link below).
This Gran Reserva is a blend of 90% Tempranillo, 5% Graciano and 5% Mazuelo. It spent two years in oak then four years in bottle before it was released. It has an opulent nose with aromas of blueberry, hedgerow berries, leather and tobacco. Whilst on the palate it is dominated by red berry and sweet spice notes. A silky smooth wines with intense flavours, fine tannins and a lingering length.
Awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their December 2016 edition review of the Barbaresco 2013 vintage (see blue link below).
This wine was aged for 12 months in 225 litre French oak barrels and another 12 months in large oak barrels. Ruby-garnet in colour with an intensely perfumed nose and notes of flowers, redcurrant, blackberry and a smoky edge. On the palate there is great fruit concentration and the characteristic tannins of Nebbiolo have been softened by the warm autumn. Long and very elegant on the finish.
The 2015 vintage was awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2017 edition review of Vermentinos (see blue link below). We appreciate it is subjective, but we judge the current 2016 vintage (2015 has sold out!) to be of equal quality and drinkability!
This wine is light straw yellow with green tinges. It has a nose which has an elegant bouquet with hints of quince, acacia blossoms and slight notes of bitter almonds. It tastes dry and mellow so matches perfectly with crab, prawns and langoustines.
The 2014 vintage was awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2017 edition review of Vermentinos (see blue link below). We appreciate it is subjective, but we judge the current 2016 vintage - the 2014 and 2015 (in standard bottles) have sold out! - to be of equal quality and drinkability!
Light, clean and bright with a lovely floral nose and notes of ripe peach and almond. The wine shows excellent depth on the palate and a lovely balance between ripe, aromatic fruit and fresh, zingy acidity.