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La Giustiniana Gavi Di Gavi Lugarara 2019 (1x75cl)

The 2018 vintage was subject to a very flattering review by Matthew Jukes in the 13th March 2020 edition of Money Week ( (see blue link below).

La Giustiniana Gavi di Gavi Luagarara 2018 - March 2020 Money Week (Matthew Jukes) review

Donato Lanati, one of Italy's best consultants, began working with La Giustiniana at the beginning of 1998. His indelible stamp of quality has become increasingly evident in recent years. The changes brought in the winery by Lanati are now being matched with the improvements being made in the vineyard, where better grapes are giving purer, richer and better balanced wines. The entire estate covers 110 hectares in the heart of the commune of Rovereto in Gavi, of which 40 are under vine. Two single-vineyard wines are produced, both of which are unoaked so the character of each vineyard shines through.

Lugarara is a single vineyard at around 300 metres above sea level. Soils are grey marl with loose, sandy topsoil. The vines are Guyot trained and planted at a density of 4,000 vines per hectare.

The 2018 vintage began with a good winter, which saw average temperatures and rainfall. Spring and early summer were very rainy, helping replenish water resources depleted in 2017 and bringing forward all vegetative stages. The fresh and humid summer lead to vigorous growth and meant that some thinning was necessary. The hot weather returned from mid-August and allowed the grapes to reach full maturity.

The grapes were hand-picked and gently pressed upon arrival at the winery. They then underwent a cool fermentation in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks at 16°C. Unoaked, the wine was bottled in the spring following the harvest.

100% Cortese.

Straw-yellow with a greenish hue, the wine's aromas of white fruit, stone fruit and lime zest are immediately beguiling and followed by a subtle yet persistent bouquet of green apples. The palate is well balanced with a fresh acidity and good structure, and almond notes on the finish.

ABV = 12.5%.


Larry Cherubino Laissez Faire Field Blend 2017 (1x75cl)

The 2016 vintage was awarded 95 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter ( in their November 2017 edition review of Australia's "Other" Whites (see blue links below).

Cherubino LF Field Blend 2016 - November 2017 Decanter review

Named ‘Winery of the Year’ by James Halliday and Matt Skinner, Larry Cherubino wants his wines to be distinctive and to speak clearly of their variety and vineyard site. He believes in paying meticulous attention to the vineyard, canopy and water management, picking at the right time and minimal intervention in the winery. Larry also makes wine under the Laissez Faire label, an exquisite range of natural wines which are the ultimate expression of site, made in small batches from hand harvested grapes. From delicate whites to opulent reds, all his wines have pure class and finesse.

While inspiration has been taken from organics, biodynamics and natural winemaking practices, they are not dictated to by one school of thought, these are what could be called natural wines, but Larry Cherubino likes to think of them as "post natural" wines. Believing in healthy and sustainable vineyard practices, Larry Cherubino grows all his own grapes and can account for their provenance and natural status.

A cool, wet winter was followed by a mild summer with temperatures 5°C lower than average. This resulted in a harvest which was three weeks later than normal, but patience was rewarded with highly aromatic wines. Fruit thinning and attention to viticulture was particularly essential this year. Aromatic varieties such as Pinot Grigio, Glera, Sauvignon Gris and Gewurztraminer powered through the difficult conditions in March.

Laissez Faire means "let it be" and this is reflected in the hands-off approach of winemaking. As the name suggests, the grapes selected for this Field Blend were harvested at the same time and blended in the field. The fruit was gently destemmed, then the parcels were allowed to ferment naturally on their skins for a period of five days. No additives, sulphites, acids or enzymes were added during the vinification of this blend, with only minimal sulphur added at bottling.

Gewürztraminer 55%, Pinot Gris 29%, Riesling 11%, Pinot Blanc 5%.

An elegant blend with an exotic yet fresh symphony of citrus, passionfruit, mineral notes and rose water. Layers of pear, nougat, Turkish delight are interwoven on the soft and refined palate through to a long finish with a subtle but drying acidity.

This wine is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.

ABV = 12.5%.


Machherndl Gruner Veltliner Federspiel Kollmutz 2018 (1x75cl)

Weingut Machherndl, an 18-acre estate established in 1786, is run by 8th generation owner, Erich Machherndl, who believes in honest viticulture without compromises. His philosophy is simple: Keep focused on tradition, believe in the vines—especially the 100-year-old vines—and do not become distracted by the status symbols of modern viticulture. He has been called stubborn, but his first goal is to produce exquisite wines that can be enjoyed and admired for many years. His personal commitment to his philosophy is carefully supported by modern cellar management. Located in the Wachau Region of Austria, the wines are from 100% estate grown grapes, produced and bottled wines from single-vineyard sites.

In Austria’s Wachau Valley, falconers use the wings of doves - called Federspiel - to attract falcons. Federspeil wines, named for this tradition, must be at least 20 degrees Brix with an alcohol level between 11.5% and 12.5%.

The Pannonian climate zone extends from the east into the Wachau. Cool wet air masses, rich in oxygen, flow down from the Dunkelsteiner forest in the south to the Waldviertel in the north. This continuous circulation of air, combined with unique soil types, strongly influences the aromas forming in the grapes. The mountain terraces are mostly weathered rock (gneiss, silicate and rock brown earth) while the valleys below are covered partly with islands of loess that evolve into light, sandy soils. Terraces are around 450 meters (1,475 feet) above sea level and 250 meters (820 feet) above the Danube river.

The Ried Wösendorfer Kollmütz vineyard is marked by its eastern parcels of loess and predominantly bedrock clifffaced rocks towards the west. It has an average vine age of 47 years, on gneiss, and loess soills, at an elevation of about 860 feet (260m). This region has an early Spring, and a very hot summer, with almost no rainfall. Machherndl has four sites within Kollmütz that are planted on bedrock terraces and on the high plateau. Riesling, Grüner Veltliner and Chardonnay vines thrive here. This Grüner Veltliner is fermented with wild yeasts, in stainless steel tanks, and aged in the same vessels. The only additions are protein stabilizations.

100% Grüner Veltliner.

Residual sugar = 1.9g/litre (ie very dry).

This wine has a complex bouquet offering fine cider, green walnut & light tobacco, with an ethereal perfume of mustard seed, juniper, chrysanthemum, lentils & white bread. The aromas follow to the precisely structured palate. Balanced & brilliant, this wine is the perfect accompaniment for food from surf and turf to veggies. A herbal-tangy food buddy at its finest

Fruity, textured white with apples, pears and spice on the palate and a hint of mint on the finish.

ABV = 12.0%.


Mar de Frades (Atlantico) Albarino DO Rias Baixas 2019 (1x75cl)


Awarded 16.5 points (of 20) on Jancis Robinson's Purple Pages (www.JancisRobinson.comreviewer Jancis herself - in May 2020 (see blue link below).

Mar De Frades (Atlantico) Albarino DO Rias Baixas 2019 - May 2020 review

The 2017 vintage was awarded a Gold Medal and 95 points at the 2018 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details).

For other 2018 DWWA winners, click here.

Mar de Frades embodies the deeply-rooted traditions of Val do Salnés, the birthplace of Albariño. Recognised as one of Spain’s leading female winemakers, native Gallaecian Paula Fandino crafts wines using 100% Albariño, which express distinct saline nuances, resulting from the vines’ location overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The fresh and aromatic wine is instantly recognisable by the distinctive and slender blue glass bottle, while the eye-catching label has a thermo-sensitive logo, so that when the bottle is chilled to the appropriate serving temperature, a blue ship magically appears riding the waves on the bottle’s label.

For full details and a tasting note for this wine from the winemakers, including some top-flight spelling mistakes, please click the blue link below.

Mar de Frades Atlantico Albarino 2019 - fiche technique

100% Albariño.

Pale lemon color and lime green reflections. Aromas of orange peel and lychee that are interspersed with white flowers and mineral notes; Balsamic nuances end up marking its freshness and salinity. On the palate, it is powerful, splendid, where volume and harmony are achieved with the balance between the freshness of the fruit and the sea breeze. Elegant and delicate finish.

ABV = 12.5%.


Mara Martin Godello Do Monterrei 2019 (1x75cl)

The 2017 vintage was awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their May 2019 "Weekday Wines(see blue link below).

Alma Atlantica Mara Martin Godello 2017 - May 2019 Decanter review

Alma Atlántica means 'Atlantic Soul' in English and is inspired by wines made in proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. The aim of Alma Atlántica is to create fresh and lively whites with lots of personality and boldness of flavour. The Mara Martin Godello comes from DO Monterrei (meaning king's mountain) and is further inland in comparison to DO Rías Baixas. It is warmer here, but still sees some Atlantic influence, with the average rainfall at 683mm per year.

The vines are grown on the sides of the valleys around the river Tamega, at 400-450 metres above sea level. The climate here is Mediterranean, influenced by the Altantic ocean. Soils are a mixture of granite, slate, clay and sand.

The 2018 vintage in Monterrei saw the one of the largest crops in the region's history. The growing conditions throughout the season were excellent, and the Godello grapes were harvested with balanced acidity and optimal ripeness.

The grapes were hand picked into 20 kilogram crates, destemmed, crushed and pressed. The must was settled for 24-36 hours. Alcoholic fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at 16-18ºC for 15 days. The wine was aged for two months on its lees before bottling, to give it a full and complex mouthfeel.

100% Godello.

Clean and vivid straw-yellow in colour, this wine has typical aromas of hay, apple and pear with intense notes of wild flowers and subtle nuances of lime citrus, which continue through to the palate. The wine has good definition, depth and structure that are derived from lees contact. The finish is long and lingering.

ABV = 12.5%.


Martin Codax Albarino Rias Baixas 2018 (1x75cl)

Martín Códax was founded in 1986 by a group of winemakers led by 9th generation winemaker Luciano Amodeo. Today it comprises around 2,400 tiny vineyard parcels managed by 550 families in Rías Baixas. It has become the largest producer in Galicia with 450 hectares of vineyard planted with Albariño, representing 13% of the total Rías Baixas DO. 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 and conducted extensive research into the Albariño variety. Named after the medieval Galician poet and musician Martín Códax, the winery has strong links to local art and music.

The vineyards are primarily in the Salnés Valley, an average of five kilometres from the sea, ensuring the warm days are moderated by cool nights. The warm temperatures give ripeness and full citrus and apricot fruit, while the colder temperatures at night ensure fresh, pure Albariño aromatics. The soils are granitic and the vines are trained on a traditional horizontal trellis system known as 'Emparrado' which is similar to pergola.

The 2018 vintage in Rías Baixas was very good. The rain in May was balanced by the dry weather conditions, high temperatures and sunshine in August and September which allowed the veraison phase to develop properly. The grapes were harvested in great conditions in September.

The wine was fermented in temperature controlled stainless steel vats at 16-18ºC and underwent partial malolactic fermentation. It was then rested for four months on its fine lees which gave a smooth, almost creamy texture to the wine.

100% Albariño.

This wine is pale lemon in colour. The nose is full of ripe fruity notes married with floral aromas: apricot, citrus, tropical fruit, jasmine and orange blossom. The palate is refreshing and zesty with great flavour intensity which persists on the long finish.

ABV = 13.0%.


Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2019 (1x75cl)


Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their October 2020 article South American Whites: A New Era (see blue link below).

Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2019 - October 2020 Decanter review

The 2017 vintage of this wine was awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter ( in their October 2018 edition panel tasting of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc  (see blue link below).

Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2017 - Oct 2018 Decanter review

Montes was established in 1988 by Aurelio Montes, Douglas Murray, Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand, with the aim of producing the best wines in Chile from the best regions. The Montes wines are consistently good because they are meticulous throughout the entire production process. The Outer Limits wines were born out of Aurelio Montes' desire to push Chilean viticulture in a new direction. The vineyards that produce the grapes for the Montes Outer Limits Sauvignon Blanc are located 7 km from the coast of the resort town, Zapallar. They are the only vineyards with the Zapallar Denomination of Origin, which is the most coastal zone of the Aconcagua Valley. Due to the balance and concentration in the Outer Limits wines, they can be enjoyed now or allowed to age for a few years, rewarding with a wonderfully complex bouquet.

To see an excellent information sheet and tasting note for this wine, please click on the blue link below.

Montes Outer Limits Zapallar Sauvignon Blanc 2019 - fiche technique

100% Sauvignon Blanc.

This wine is light yellow in colour, with intense aromas of passion fruit, pink grapefruit and pineapple. On the palate, it is medium-bodied with vibrant acidity. A subtle saline touch on the finish hints at the coastal origin.

ABV = 13.5%.


Nicola Bergaglio Gavi Di Gavi La Minaia 2018 (1x75cl)

Awarded Tre Bicchieri - 2020 by Gambero Rosso.

The 2016 vintage was awarded 91 points by Decanter ( in their February 2018 Italy supplement article on Gavi (see blue link below).

Bergaglio Gavi di Gavi La Minaia 2016 - Feb 2018 Decanter review

Bergaglio's Gavi di Gavi La Minaia is 100% stainless steel fermented and left to rest in the bottle before being released.

100% Cortese.

Pale gold in colour with flashes of diamond brilliance, it has a light, fresh, mineral and citrus bouquet. The palate is crisp and dry, with a hint of ripe pears and a complex array of red and green apples, the finish is mouthwateringly refreshing and lengthy.

ABV = 13.5%


Patricius Tokaji Furmint Dry 2018 (1x75cl)

Could these vineyards be some of the oldest in the world? On the same latitude as Chablis, Tokaji experiences a much warmer climate because of its central European location and the sheltering Carpathian Mountains to the north, west and east. This, together with the influence of the Tisza and Bodrog rivers, produces the magic combination of humid nights and warm, fine autumns which result in such fantastic sweet wines from botrytis grapes, similar to Sauternes. 

Patricius is very much the new kid on the block, bursting onto the scene in 2005 with a succession of medals, awards and rapturous endorsement. Deszö Kékessy was a Hungarian exile during Communism, who returned to his beloved Tokaji having established a successful business in Switzerland. Little by little he has acquired 150 hectares of the very best vineyards, built a fabulous new winery and employed top winemaker Péter Molnár. Deszö’s daughter and son-in-law run what he has established as a true legacy for his family. The attention to detail is breathtaking: re-planting and even re-orienting rows of vines where necessary, and upholding a standard of perfection in both vine-growing and winemaking which is evident in the quality of the wines, which display exquisite elegance and class, with a fine tension between complex fruit and honey flavours, minerality and rapier-like acidity.

This wine is 100% Furmint.

This wine boasts a distinctive fruity varietal character, complemented with a perfumed nose due to Furmint grape. The palate combines nice minerality and elegant, vibrant acidity to deliver the same fruitiness as the nose with peach and a touch of almond and make a well-balanced and easy-to-drink terroir white wine.

ABV = 12.5%.


Paul Jaboulet Aine Condrieu Les Grands Amandiers 2018 (1x75cl)

"This has superbly fresh, apricot and white-peach aromas with gentle ginger and spice notes. Very floral and pure. The palate has a smooth array of peaches and apricots and super fresh and very discreet oak. Matured in demi-muid and concrete eggs. Succulent finish. Drink now. 93 points." James Suckling.


"White flowers, orange blossom, and hints of honeyed spice emerge from the 2018 Condrieu Les Grands Amandiers, another beautifully textured, medium-bodied, concentrated, yet straight and focused white. It's balanced, soft, and forward, yet superb. 92 points." Jeb Dunnuck, December 2019


Jaboulet produces some of the world's greatest wines in the Rhone Valley, with Hermitage La Chapelle being its most famous wine. It was for many years run by Gérard Jaboulet, who was one of the great ambassadors for Rhône wines, tirelessly travelling the world and spreading the Gospel according to the Holy Grail of Hermitage. He died suddenly in 1997 and the firm has been run by Philippe & Jacques Jaboulet, until 2006 when the real estate entrepreneur Jean-Jacques Frey purchased the wine company.

The Frey family has  of long standing in the Champagne region and are owners of Château La Lagune in Bordeaux. Jacques and Nicolas Frey are now involved in the day-to-day running of the Maison Jaboulet, while Caroline Frey (pictured right), the eldest daughter, is at the helm of the wine-making team. Under Caroline’s leadership, in 2006, the vineyards earned Sustainable Farming status while Jaboulet's winegrowing is in the course of convePaul Jaboulet Aine Condrieu Les Grands Amandiers 2018rsion towards biodynamic certification. 

Jaboulet produces wine from 26 different appellations in the Rhône. Treasured by the Popes of Avignon in the 14th Century, the story of Condrieu has evolved alongside the history of France. At the beginning of the last century, only about 10 hectares of vineyards remained. The creation of a Condrieu AOC (a Protected Designation of Origin) in 1940, however, paved the way for the rebirth of Condrieu and its ascension to the greatest heights among the white wines of France today.

The autumn of 2017 was exceptionally dry. Winter 2017-18 was moderately watered and did not fully offset the water deficit. The winter season was very cool, temperatures returned to normal at the beginning of April resulting in later budburst. The whole spring was regularly and correctly watered. Temperatures remained and sometimes were above normal. These alternating hot and rainy periods led to very rapid growth of the vine. Phenology progressed very quickly and the season became early. At the beginning of July, temperatures were getting hotter/ the sanitary state of the vineyard was excellent, berries were juicy, well inflated and often larger than last year. The few rains in August allowed to unlock the situation and the harvest of September took place in a summer atmosphere under particularly heavy heat.

Click this link for Wine Advocate's review and opinion of the 2018 Northern Rhone harvest

Grapes were hand-picked, sorted on the plot, in small crates. The vatting period lasted around 4 weeks with gentle extractions. Aged in French oak barrels (20% new).

See the link below for more details of the wine and winemaking from Jaboulet themselves.

Paul Jaboulet Aine Condrieu Les Grands Amandiers 2018 - fiche technique

100% Viognier. 

We refer you to the above reviews for a tasting note.

ABV = 14.0% (estimated, not certain until bottled).


Paul Jaboulet Aine Cotes du Rhone Blanc Secret de Famille 2018 (1x75cl)

Since the early 19th century Paul Jaboulet Aine has been synonymous with quality wine in the Rhone. In 1834, Antoine Jaboulet (1807-1864) started working the land in this region, creating a lasting link between the Jaboulet name and the Rhone over the generations. This famous Rhone winery was bought by the Frey family in 2006. The Freys, owners of Chateau la Lagune in Bordeaux, saw the potential of the vineyards. They have brought renewed energy to this corner of France. 

50% Grenache Blanc, 20% Marsanne, 20% Viognier, 10% Bourboulenc. This wine is vinified in stainless steel tanks before being aged for 2 to 3 months, 50% of which occurs in oak casks.

This wine is bright pale yellow in colour. It has fresh pear and stone fruit on the nose, with fine citrus acidity on the palate to balance the ample fruit intensity. It has a long yet appealing sherbet and pear finish. Like the better class of white Cotes du Rhones in which it belongs, it combines refreshing acidity (primarily from the Bourboulenc component) with a fuller body/mouthfeel (especially from the Marsanne and Viognier).

NB: fans of Jaboulet's Parallele 45 white may like to note that this is exactly the same wine under a different (off-trade) label: the same is true of the Parallele 45/Secret de Famille red CdR.

ABV = 13.5%.


Paul Jaboulet Aine Crozes Hermitage Blanc Domaine Mule Blanche 2017 (1x75cl)

** IN STOCK!! **

"A barrel-fermented blend of 50% Marsanne and 50% Roussanne, the 2017 Crozes Hermitage Domaine Mule Blanche is a terrific example of what those varieties can do when they're grown in the right location and vinified with care. Gentle toasted grain scents waft from the glass, along with notes of marshmallow and melon. It's full-bodied and richly textured, with notes of pineapple, crème brûlée and citrus on the long finish. 94 points. Joe Czerwinski - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate


"From the Thalabert estate, which is mostly rolled stone terroirs, the 2017 Crozes Hermitage Crozes Hermitage Mule Blanche checks in as equal parts Marsanne and Roussanne that was brought up in demi-muids and cement tanks. It offers a fresh, vibrant, slightly exotic style in its white flowers, lime blossom, and white peach aromas and flavors. Fresh, vibrant and pure, with a touch of Sauvignon character, it’s nevertheless beautifully concentrated, deep, and layered. 92 points". Jeb Dunnuck


Since the early 19th Century, Paul Jaboulet Ainé has been synonymous with quality wine in the Rhône Valley. Jaboulet’s Hermitages - white and red - and most of their upper wines - are the stuff of legend. The famous Rhone winery was bought by the Frey family in 2006. The Freys, owners of Chateau la Lagune in Bordeaux, saw the potential of the vineyards. They brought renewed energy to this corner of France and to one of its greatest names.

The name Mule Blanche comes from the days before mechanisation, when mules were used in the Jaboulet vineyards, as they were  hardier than draughthorses.

The Mule Blanche estate is located on a glacio-fluvial plain with clay-chalk soil; vines here have an average age of some 50 years.

50% Marsanne, 50% Roussanne (as distinct from Jaboulet’s 100% Marsanne Les Jalets white Crozes). 

Hand-picked grapes are whole-bunch pressed, following which the must settles for 2 days before being racked. The wine is then oak fermented and aged for 9-10 months. 55% of the blend is aged in French oak - of which 15% is new - while 25% is aged in small concrete eggs and the remaining 20% in stainless steel tanks. Traditional ageing provides freshness in the mouth with a range of complex aromas. Malolactic fermentation is blocked and there is no battonage.

The Mule Blanche has an aromatic nose of white flowers, hawthorn and acacia, with a delicate woody final note. It is supple and well-rounded with an harmonious fresh finish.

ABV = 14.0%.


Pfaffl, Gruner Veltliner Zeisen, Weinviertel DAC 2019 (1x75cl)

** TYPICALLY £16+! **

The family estate in the Southern Weinviertel region belongs to one of the most well recognised names in the Austrian wine business. Siblings Roman Josef Pfaffl and Heidemarie Fischer with their parents Adelheid and Roman Pfaffl are still deeply rooted in their homeland. Together they carry the best of the Weinviertel out into the world. Today, the family cultivates 90 hectares of vineyards, which are embedded like islands in the landscape, spread over 11 municipalities in the Weinviertel region and the capital, Vienna.

The Pfaffl wines are very well known and appreciated both nationally and internationally, being exported to more than 20 countries. Step by step the new generation is taking over the reins, but always keeping the family philosophy in mind: “The quality grows in the vineyard”.

Grüner Veltliner is the most beloved grape variety of the Pfaffl family. They produce wines from it in a range of styles, from fresh and fruity to opulent and complex, but they never lose the peppery spice quality typically (and usually) associated with Grüner Veltliner. 

The vineyard is a south-facing slope situated directly nearby a forest resulting considerable temperature differences between day and night. The soil consists of slighty sandy loess. Vines are approximately 43 years old and are cultivated in a dense of around 4.000 vines/ha. To profit from the rising ground-heat and to reach a high foliage-wall a trellis training system is used at about 60-90 cm and the Guyot cutting system used.

Grapes were destemed and squeezed and must was standing two hours before being pneumatically pressed by at low pressure. Fermentation took place with automatic temperature-control at 19°C. Storage in stainless steel-tanks; after four months, the wine was bottled.

See also the blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers themselves. Panic not, there is English among all the German!

Pfaffl, Gruner Veltliner Zeisen, Weinviertel DAC 2019 - fiche technique

100% Grüner Veltliner.

Residual sugar = 5.7 g/litre.

Bright sparkling yellow with green reflexes, beautiful and charming fragrance of black pepper, accompanied by citrus and field herbs. Juicy and crisp on the palate; very refreshing. A spicy finish, it pairs well with everything from tender fish sandwiches to oriental dishes.

ABV = 13.0%.


Pieropan La Rocca Soave Classico 2017 (1x75cl)

Awarded 95 points and Outstanding status by Decanter ( in their May 2020 edition article on Ageing Italian Whites (see blue link below).

Pieropan La Rocca Soave Classico 2017 - May 2020 Decanter review

Pieropan's estate covers 58 hectares of vineyard which are situated on the stony hills of Soave Classico. The Pieropan family has been producing wines in Soave since the 1890s. Indeed, they were the first producer to bottle a wine with the name Soave on the label in the early 1930s. Nino Pieropan took over from his father in 1970 and was the first producer in Soave to make a single vineyard wine, 'Calvarino', in 1971. Nino's two sons, Andrea and Dario, took over the running of the estate in 2017 when Nino fell ill and before he passed away in April 2018. From the 2015 vintage onwards, all Pieropan wines are organically certified.

The grapes were grown in the vineyard of 'La Rocca', which takes its name from the adjacent medieval castle and fortress ("La Rocca") that dominate the town of Soave, just east of Verona. The soil in La Rocca is unique in Soave in that it is a limestone outcrop (the same soil as in Valpolicella Classico) in a sea of basalt. Because of this soil, the family feels they get sufficient ripeness in the Garganega to make a wine solely from this variety.

The 2017 vintage was characterised by a cold winter with abundant rainfall. At the end of April, there was a period of frost. For this reason, blossom only began to appear towards the end of May, with an earlier start on the lower slopes. Sunny weather followed, but frost and drought meant this was a relatively challenging vintage in terms of quantity. Nevertheless, the grapes were healthy and of good quality.

After gentle, whole-bunch pressing, there was a short period of maceration on the skins followed by fermentation at 20ºC in stainless steel tanks and 500 litre oak casks because the family feels that Garganega is too delicate for fermentation in barrique. 60% of the wine then remained in 500 litre oak casks and 40% aged in 2,000 litre 'botti' or large barrels for one year. The wine was then aged for four months in bottle before release.

100% Garganega.

'La Rocca' is golden yellow in the glass, with intense, concentrated perfumes that follow through to the palate. Classic La Rocca aromas of almond essence and honey lead to an elegant and beautifully balanced palate, with notes of vanilla and almond kernel, ripe apricots and exotic fruit. The long finish has a light mineral edge.

ABV = 13.0%.


Pieropan Soave Classico 2019 (1x75cl)

Pieropan's estate covers 46 hectares of vineyard which are situated on the stony hills of Soave Classico. The Pieropan family has been producing wines in Soave since the 1890s. Indeed, they were the first producer to bottle a wine with the name Soave on the label in the early 1930s. Nino Pieropan took over from his father in 1970 and was the first producer in Soave to make a single vineyard wine, 'Calvarino', in 1971. Nino's two sons, Andrea and Dario, now work with him running the estate. From the 2015 vintage onwards, all Pieropan wines are organically certified.

The soil is clay-basalt and volcanic in origin. Yields are low and the vines south facing. The fruit come from hillside vineyards (100- 300 m above sea level) in the heart of the Soave classico area. They grapes of Garganega and Trebbiano di Soave (no relation to its prolific Tuscan namesake) are grown without the use of pesticides or chemicals.

Grapes of Trebbiano di Soave are hand-picked starting from midSeptember while the Garganega grapes are picked later in October. The grapes are de-stemmed and crushed with the free run juice fermented separately between 14-18°C in glass-lined cement tanks. The wine remains in glass-lined cement tanks on the fine lees for a period which varies according to the vintage. In the spring following the harvest the wine is bottled and then released after at least a further month in bottle.

85% Garganega, 15% Trebbiano di Soave.

A fresh and expressive Soave, with classic white flower, almond blossom and a touch of citrus. Rounded, ripe fruit is perfectly balanced by a fresh, clean acidity. Long and fragrant, it has a note of fine, almond pastry on the finish.

We like this because we know that Soave is not in fashion. And that's mainly because the world is awash with bad Soave. Good Soave is hard to find and hugely worthwhile when you find it. Nobody should be surprised that Pieroapan lie behind many of the very best Soaves and this, their workhorse, is delightful. with all the tightness and freshness that good Soave should have. At the price, it's terrific.

ABV = 12.0%.

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