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Alpha Estate Single Vineyard Turtles Florina Malagouzia 2018 (1x75cl)

Alpha Estate is situated in the Ampelia region, in the heart of the Amyndeon district, an area of VQPRD wines in the northern part of Greece. Two factors contribute to the special character of Alpha Estate grapes: meso-climate and soil. Moderate temperatures and heavy winter rains create ideal conditions for the grapes to ripen, whilst our soils with good drainage create a mild water deficit for the vines, resulting in small berries with intense red colour and concentrated flavours and aromas.

The privately owned vineyard of the estate is situated on a plateau at an altitude of 620-710m with a northwest exposure, covering a total area of 65 hectares. The local climate is characterized by cold winters with sufficient rainfall and snow to provide the vines with the necessary water supplies to endure the relatively dry summer. Additionally, two neighbouring lakes contribute to the existence of a mild semi-continental climate perfect for the cultivation of both foreign and indigenous red and white grape varieties.

100% Malagouzia. 

Brilliant, light yellow in color with greenish tints. Strong and lively nose, typical Malagouzia, suggesting rose petal with floral aromas and sweet spices, melon, lychee with a note of honeysuckle. Round and mellow on the palate, fat but balanced, high in alcohol with plenty of finesse. Well structured, reminding the nose aromas with a hint of rosemary. A richly textured wine with superb length and balance. A classy wine with long finish and persistent aromas.

Excellently married with green salads, baked vegetables, pasta, low fat fishes and a wide variety of Greek sea food, meze.

ABV = 13.0%. 

£14.15

Amalaya Blanco de Corte Torrontes / Riesling 2019 (1x75cl)

The 2018 vintage was awarded 94 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2019 edition panel tasting of Alternative South American Whites (see blue link below).

Amalaya Blanco De Corte Torrontes / Riesling 2018 - October 2019 Decanter review

The 2016 vintage was also awarded 95 points and a Platinum Best In Show at the Decanter World Wine Awards (www.decanter.com): see their August 2017 DWWA supplement (see blue link below).

Amalaya Blanco De Corte Torrontes / Riesling 2018 - August 2017 Decanter review

Amalaya translates to ‘hope for a miracle’ in the indigenous language of the now extinct tribe, the Calchaquí. The winery is situated in Cafayate, Calchaquí Valley in Salta in the far north of Argentina at nearly 1,828 metres above sea level. It is a part of the Hess Family Estates and is run with the same dedication to quality, sustainability and social responsibility as the other Hess Estates. All of the Amalaya wines are fruit driven in style, with a finesse that unites them. These wines offer incredible value for their quality and truly reflect their ‘sense of place‘.

The Torrontes and Riesling grapes were grown on the Finca San Isidoro vineyards. These are located in the Cafayate Valley in the very heart of the Calchaqui Valley, distinguished for being the highest wine region in the world. The climate here is very dry, with just 150mm of rain in an average year and a huge thermal amplitude of around 20°C. The soils here are rocky, poor and sandy so the roots of the vines are forced to dig deep to find the vital nutrients and water they need, which in turn results in a huge concentration of flavour within the fruit.

The grapes went through a double selection process, firstly in the vineyard and then again on the sorting table at the winery. The grapes underwent cold maceration for four days, followed by a slow fermentation using selected yeasts, at low temperatures to retain the varietal fruit character. 80% of the wine was aged in stainless steel tanks with 20% aged in French oak for 10 months.

85% Torrontes, 15% Riesling.

Intense gold in colour, this wine has pronounced aromas of grapefruit and lemon peel. Delicate and silky on the palate with great freshness and crisp acidity on the distinctly mineral finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£10.35

Bigi Orvieto Classico Amabile 2019 (1x75cl)

Bigi’s first headquarters was in the former Franciscan monastery of La Trinità in Orvieto, but this was confiscated by the Italian state in 1870! Today they are based in their modern cellars at Ponte Giulio at the foot of the lofty walls of the old and ancient town. The winery with its avant-garde vinification equipment and collection of casks and barrels marries perfectly the modern technical production requirement with age-old tradition.

The signature wine of Orvieto, this wine is produced from hilly vineyards in the Classic DOC zone, enjoying clayey soil and southwest exposure. Vineyards have been cultivated in Umbria, “the green heart of Italy” and a crossroads between the north and the south, between the Adriatic and Tyrrhenian Seas, since Etruscan times. When one speaks of Orvieto, one thinks of a beautiful walled city built on a tuffstone mound by the Etruscans, and known in the Roman era as Urbs Vetus (old city) - but also of the prized white Umbrian wine of which Bigi has been a leading producer for many years.

Orvieto Amabiles are richer than the dry Secco wines and could be described as medium-dry. Don’t let this put you off as this is an ideal bar wine; gentle and soft on the palate with subtle peach and almond fruit and enough freshness to carry that enticing sweet edge. Made from a combination of Trebbiano Toscano (Procanico), Verdello, Grechetto, Malvasia and Drupeggio grapes.

50% Trebbiano, 20% Grechetto, 10% Malvasia Bianca, 10% Verdello, 10% Drupeggio.

The fermentation of wine is stopped before all its sugars are transformed into alcohol, yielding a medium, off-dry taste. The residual sugar level is ~27g/litre, making it classically off-dry.

Fermented and aged in stainless steel. This wine offers a floral bouquet of hawthorn blossom with hints of musk and almond. Dry and full-bodied on the palate, Bigi Orvieto Classico has a lively flavour with a unique aftertaste of white peaches and bitter almonds. 

ABV = 12.0%.

£9.80

Bodega Garzon Reserva Albarino 2019 (1x75cl)

Awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their October 2020 article South American Whites: A New Era (see blue link below).

Bodega Garzon Reserva Albarino 2019 - October 2020 Decanter review

The 2018 vintage was awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2019 edition panel tasting of Alternative South American Whites (see blue link below).

Garzón Reserva Albariño 2018 - October 2019 Decanter review

The 2017 vintage was awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2018 edition feature on Uruguay  (see blue link below).

Garzón Reserva Albariño 2017 - Oct 2018 Decanter review

The 2016 vintage was awarded 95 points and a Platinum Best In Category (Best Central South American White) at the 2017 Decanter World Wine Awards (www.decanter.com): see their August 2017 DWWA supplement (see blue link below).

Garzón Reserva Albariño 2016 - 2017 DWWA Decanter review

Bodega Garzón is a family owned winery in Maldonado on the Atlantic coast in southern Uruguay. They pioneered viticulture in this area over 10 years ago, and have since become the standard-bearer for premium wines from Uruguay. In November 2018, their pioneering status was recognised by Wine Enthusiast with the ‘New World Winery of the Year’ award. The vineyards at Bodega Garzón are a patchwork quilt of 1,150 individual plots of around 0.2 hectares in size, each plot carefully chosen for a specific variety according to its soil and microclimate. The winery is specially designed to operate as sustainably as possible, and is the first winery outside North America to pursue LEED certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). Built on natural terraces, the winery uses cutting-edge technology and operates using a gravity system to ensure quality and energy efficiency at every stage of production.

Located 11 miles from the Atlantic Ocean, the estate has more than 1,000 small vineyard blocks covering hillside slopes, which benefit from varying microclimates, different levels of humidity and an intense canopy management. Well-draining granitic soils and cooling Atlantic breezes allow the grapes to ripen steadily. The vineyards are surrounded by lush forests, palm trees, rocky soils and granite boulders. This single vineyard Tannat comes from a site which is cooler than the other blocks on the estate, with steep slopes, thin soils and excellent drainage thanks to the predominance of ballast in the upper layers.

The 2019 vintage began with a cold winter. During spring there was abundant rainfall and warm temperatures, which resulted in homogenous budbreak and flowering. Disease threat posed by heavy December and January rainfall was minimised by cool Atlantic ocean breezes that swept through the vineyards. Low temperatures at the end of February and March ensured steady ripening and good levels of natural acidity in the grapes.

The hand-harvested grapes were pressed before being fermented in stainless-steel tanks at a cool 17ºC for two weeks. The wine then spent a further 3-6 months on lees for added complexity.

For full details of this unusual but superb wine, we would point you towards Garzon's own, excellent fiche technique/data sheet (click here).

100% Albariño/Alvarinho.

Pale yellow with a green hue, this Albariño is intense on the nose with peach and citrus aromas. The freshness and minerality on the midpalate is superb, ably supported by a remarkable acidity which frames the juicy fruit on the crisp finish.

ABV = 13.5%.

£15.75

Bodegas Protos Rueda Verdejo 2019 (1x75cl)

** NB: NEW BOTTLE DESIGN/SHAPE **

The 2017 vintage was awarded 89 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2019 edition review of Rueda (see blue link below).

Bodegas Protos Rueda Verdejo 2017 - March 2019 Decanter review

The guiding philosophy of Protos is "Quality above all". For this reason, the whole process leading to the production of their wine undergoes an in-depth analysis. The vineyards are controlled exhaustively by both technicians and experts throughout the growth cycle, yielding a production of the highest quality. This also gives them in-depth information about all the grapes to be used before they reach the winery.

Harvesting for this wine is done at night, is 100% manual and the production was gathered in 20-kilo boxes; the grapes are then spread over sorting tables. This allows them to guarantee that only completely healthy, whole grapes reach the fermentation tanks. After fermentation this wine spends a further 3 months resting on its fine lees (indeed, the 2017 and 2018 vintages have been labelled, as per the photo, as a sobre lias).

100% Verdejo.

This wine has a greenish straw colour and is bright and clean. The Protos Verdejo is powerful yet fruity with green apple, citrus and tropical fruit aromas as well as white blossoms, fragant herbs and fennel hints. The flavours are very fresh, with good acidity,  fruity, well balanced flavours. It is a complex wine, with a long finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£11.80

Ca Dei Frati Lugana I Frati 2018 (1x75cl)

The Dal Cero family has transformed their Cà dei Frati property, situated on the southern shores of Lake Garda, into a model Italian estate over the past two decades. Back in 1987, they had 12 hectares of vineyard but now, following the purchase of a large chunk of prime vineyard in 2008, they have over 140 hectares. This increase in quantity has been matched by an increase in quality, and today they remain the best producer in Lugana. The quality of the wines is attributable directly to Igino Dal Cero's obsession with detail. All their fruit is picked by hand; he ensures there is no skin contact as he wants to retain delicate perfumes and enhance the supple texture; he has changed his mind on malolactic fermentation and now inhibits it in order to give the wine the lift he feels it benefits from; and he is now convinced that ageing on lees from end of fermentation gives him greater richness on the palate and the wonderful flintiness on nose that makes this wine so Burgundian in character.

The secret to the success of the Cà dei Frati wines is outstanding vineyards. Most producers in the zone overcrop and train the vines high. At Cà dei Frati, the vines are trained low, on single or double Guyot, newer vineyards have a higher density of planting, and yields are well below the average for the zone. This wine is made from grapes grown on 10 to 35 year old vines. In Lugana, the Turbiana grape is grown on the glacial soils just to the south of Lake Garda. The warmer days give wines with more weight and intensity than those from 60 kilometres to the east. The cool nights, thanks to the moderating influence of Lake Garda, ensures the grapes retain aroma and acidity.

The 2018 vintage began with a long period of dry weather. Rainy weather occurred in May and early June. Hot weather in the summer months allowed the grapes to develop normally. Temperatures throughout the summer remained high; in September it rarely went below 30°C. Yields were slightly higher than usual, and the quality of the grapes was very high.

The must was fermented in temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks to maximise its fresh fruit character. The wine then remained on lees in stainless-steel tanks for six months before spending two months ageing in bottle before release.

100% Turbiana.

Pale yellow in colour with a concentrated but fresh perfume of white flowers, peaches and ripe lemons. On the palate, it has excellent depth and balance, with lovely richness and a crisp, lively finish.

ABV = 13.5%.

£16.75

Cantina Valle Isarco, Sylvaner Aristos, Alto Adige 2018 (1x75cl)

** PLEASE NOTE: NOT WITH US UNTIL THE END OF OCTOBER (this wine is nowhere in the UK currently) - A SHORT FURTHER DELAY IS ALWAYS POSSIBLE **

Awarded a Platinum medal and 97 points at the 2020 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details and review).

For other 2020 DWWA winners, click here.

Located in the Valle Isarco, the most northerly wine-producing area of the majestic mountainous region of Alto Adige. Cantina Valle Isarco is one of the youngest cooperatives here, but has swiftly built a reputation for producing high quality wines of regional distinction. Though the cooperative itself may be young, evidence suggests that Valle Isarco has very old winemaking roots, dating back as far as 500 BC!

The Cantina was founded 1961 by 24 members, at which time it was located in the cellars of Reinthalerhof estate. After a series of unfortunate events, resulting in the devastation of the winery, not once but twice! In 1975, they consolidated their resources to build a brand new, state of the art winery, equipped with the latest technology and modern equipment.

Today the Cantina is made up of 135 members, located across the valley on steep terraced vineyards, ranging from 300m – 950m above sea level. Because of how steep the slopes are, almost all the grapes are hand harvested, ensuring uncompromised quality of fruit. The vignerons benefit from dry, sunny ripening periods and mineral rich soils, ideal conditions for these expressive, aromatic white wines. White wine makes up 95% of their production, working with classic regional varieties such as Kerner, Sylvaner, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Bianco, Müller Thurgau and Gewürztraminer. Although whites are their focus, they have also found success with varietals such as Pinot Noir, Zweigelt, Lagrein and Schiava.

Cantina Valle Isarco’s wines display beautiful freshness, minerality and regional typicity, their entry level range offers fantastic value for money. Their premium Aristos range uses top quality grapes from across the Valley to produce wines with brilliant focus, strong character, depth and elegance.

The grapes selected for the production of this prestigious wine come from the sunny vineyards that surround the Sabiona monastery, known as the “Acropolis of Tyrol”. The severe selection, the controlled production and the delicate ageing in acacia wood casks provide this wine with its unmistakable breeding.

100% Sylvaner (or Silvaner, if you will).

For this wine, see the blue link below for the fiche technique/technical and tasting note from the winemakers themselves. This is for the new 2019 vintage (not in UK or rated by DWWA), but the details are fundamentally the same.

Cantina Valle Isarco, Sylvaner Aristos, Alto Adige 2018 - fiche technique

As DWWA20 said, "Delicate textbook Sylvaner with citrus, nectarine and berry aromas with notes of acacia and nutmeg. Dancing apple flavours, strong spice, mineral notes and lovely acidity; very well made wine that is rich yet fresh". 

** PLEASE NOTE: NOT WITH US UNTIL THE END OF OCTOBER (this wine is nowhere in the UK currently) - A SHORT FURTHER DELAY IS ALWAYS POSSIBLE **

£21.95

Cenatiempo Vini d Ischia Forastera Ischia Bianco 2018 (1x75cl)

As Cenatiempo will tell you, Ischia wine is mountain wine. The vineyards all over the island are influenced by the close proximity to the Tyrrhenian Sea (off the West Coast of Italy, not far from Naples) but also from their elevation – their grapes are grown up to elevations of 600 meters. The winery is run by Pasquale Cenatiempo and his partner, Federica Predoni. They make compelling, focused, mineral-driven wines from the island’s indigenous varieties on the volcanic slopes of Ischia. 

Ischia is situated just off the coast of Naples. Here the soil is volcanic. In fact, the island was formed by a volcano which last erupted in 1302. The winery was founded in 1945 by Pasquale’s father Francesco, who, like Pasquale today, made wine from his own grapes as well as from some of his friends and neighbors throughout the island. Not much has changed over the last 70 years. The wines are still fermented in steel or cement vats with indigenous yeasts and aged in the same vessels. In the vineyards, Cenatiempo farms organically. In fact, for their larger parcels they have begun adapting some biodynamic principles and treatments as well.

Their production is mainly in white wine including a couple of Ischia Bianco blends as well as monovarietal wines of Biancolella and the high-acid, low-octane Forastera. They also make small amounts of red, mainly from Piedirosso, Aglianico and Sciacinosso. The two wines that really illustrate the potential of great winemaking on this small island are the Kalimera Biancolella sourced from an old parcel of Biancolella at high elevation and also the small production Forastera bottling which is more reminiscent of a mountain wine from the north, like a Blanc du Morgex from the Valle d’Aoste, beautifully lean, racy and stony. 

These are small production wines form an artisanal producer making traditional, natural wine from a truly unique terroir of high elevation vineyards and compelling local varieties.

Sourced from estate vineyards in the commune of Lacco Ameno, west-facing terraces at about 200 meters in elevation. (Very) volcanic soil. Hand-harvested at the end of October.

Vinified in stainless steel. Aged in stainless steel.

100% Forastera.

Medium dark yellow. Lively aromas of fresh flowers, pear and apple sauce. Savory, rich, ripe and saline on a long, clean finish that hints at custard cream, grapefruit and eucalyptus. An intense aromatic white wine with generous fruit and a lovely orange peel finish.

ABV = 13.0%.

£22.20

Cenatiempo Vini d Ischia Kalimera Biancolella Ischia 2018 (1x75cl)

The 2017 vintage was awarded a Platinum & Best in Show medal and 97 points at the 2019 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details).

For other 2019 DWWA winners, click here.

As Cenatiempo will tell you, Ischia wine is mountain wine. The vineyards all over the island are influenced by the close proximity to the Tyrrhenian Sea (off the West Coast of Italy, not far from Naples) but also from their elevation – their grapes are grown up to elevations of 600 meters. The winery is run by Pasquale Cenatiempo and his partner, Federica Predoni. They make compelling, focused, mineral-driven wines from the island’s indigenous varieties on the volcanic slopes of Ischia. 

Ischia is situated just off the coast of Naples. Here the soil is volcanic. In fact, the island was formed by a volcano which last erupted in 1302. The winery was founded in 1945 by Pasquale’s father Francesco, who, like Pasquale today, made wine from his own grapes as well as from some of his friends and neighbors throughout the island. Not much has changed over the last 70 years. The wines are still fermented in steel or cement vats with indigenous yeasts and aged in the same vessels. In the vineyards, Cenatiempo farms organically. In fact, for their larger parcels they have begun adapting some biodynamic principles and treatments as well.

Their production is mainly in white wine including a couple of Ischia Bianco blends as well as monovarietal wines of Biancolella and the high-acid, low-octane Forastera. They also make small amounts of red, mainly from Piedirosso, Aglianico and Sciacinosso. The two wines that really illustrate the potential of great winemaking on this small island are the Kalimera Biancolella sourced from an old parcel of Biancolella at high elevation and also the small production Forastera bottling which is more reminiscent of a mountain wine from the north, like a Blanc du Morgex from the Valle d’Aoste, beautifully lean, racy and stony. 

These are small production wines form an artisanal producer making traditional, natural wine from a truly unique terroir of high elevation vineyards and compelling local varieties.

100% Biancolella.

Viticulture: Hand-harvested at the end of October. Practicing (but not certified) organic viticulture. Practicing biodynamic. Hand-harvested at the end of October.

Winemaking: Vinified in cement. Aged in cement, spending three months on the lees.

"It's made from the indigenous Biancolella grape variety which few of our judges had ever tasted before - but its golden colour, almost spritzy style, haunting aromas of wild flowers and fragrant scented hay, and its mouthfilling, complex flavour which seem to hint at celery and fennel as well as quince and medlar captivated everyone who tasted it.  A unique, cultural wine of memorable, stealthy charm." (DWWA19 panel review of the 2017)

ABV = 13.0%.

£23.75

Chateau Du Coing De St Fiacre Muscadet Sevre Et Maine Sur Lie 2018 (1x75cl)

Château du Coing is located in the village of Saint Fiacre, in the Sèvre et Maine district of Muscadet. The owner and winemaker is Véronique Günther-Chéreau, whose family has been making wine at Saint Fiacre since 1421. Véronique has over 65 hectares of vines which lie at the meeting point of the Sèvre and Maine rivers. Unusually for négoce-dominated Muscadet, Château du Coing is family run and uses solely estate grown fruit. The style is 'sur lie', with at least six months' ageing on the yeast lees to ensure more body and complexity than the average Muscadet on the market.

Sèvre et Maine is acknowledged to be the best district in which to grow Muscadet (Melon de Bourgogne). The vineyard of Château du Coing is located in the village of Saint Fiacre sur Maine, just at the confluence of the rivers Sèvre and Maine. The soil is composed of schists and the vineyards are south-facing with slopes of 14%. The vines here are on average 65 years old, giving depth and richness to the wines.

2018 has been exceptional both in terms of the quality and quantity of fruit produced. Favourable spring conditions without the frosts of the previous year ensured good vine development. Flowering in June went well and the hot conditions throughout the summer encouraged growth. The settled dry weather from August to October ensured that the fruit reached full maturity without any disease.

After being gently pressed the must was fermented in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks at 20°C for a period of two to three weeks. Following fermentation, the wine was matured on lees for six months in underground tanks, to add complexity and texture.

100% Melon de Bourgogne.

Pale yellow in colour, this wine has aromas of white peach, green apples and floral notes. On the palate, the pure citrus fruit is bolstered by body, richness and structure from the lees ageing. Crisp and vibrant, it is the perfect companion to seafood.

ABV = 12.5%.

£11.35

Chateau Lestrille Capmartin Bordeaux Blanc 2018 (1x75cl)

Château Lestrille Capmartin wines are full bodied, with structure and personality. The Château is located at the northern point of the Entre-deux-Mers appellation in the small town of St. Germain du Puch between Libourne and Bordeaux. Following the philosophy that winemaking lies in the vineyard itself, sustainable winegrowing practices are used in order to respect the balance of the soil. Talented winemaker Estelle Roumage combines strict selection, with a tailor-made approach to vinification. Each parcel is vinified with minimal intervention to respect and optimise the characteristics of the vintage and terroir, with subtle oak ageing, creating charming wines with the utmost appeal.

Following the philosophy that winemaking lies in the vineyard itself, sustainable winegrowing practices are used in order to respect the balance of the soil. Talented winemaker Estelle Roumage combines strict selection, with a tailor-made approach to vinification. Each parcel is vinified with minimal intervention to respect and optimise the characteristics of the vintage and terroir, with subtle oak ageing, creating charming wines with the utmost appeal. Vineyard The vineyards are cultivated according to la lutte raisonnée, using sustainable agriculture methods, reducing the use of chemicals in order to respect the land and its environment. The soils in the vineyard have a high clay and silt content.

The grapes were picked at full maturity and carefully sorted. A maceration took place for eight hours with a cold stabilisation and yeast inoculation being carried out in tank. The fermentation took place in new oak and the wine was then aged on its fine lees with frequent bâtonnage, imparting texture and complexity to the resulting wine. The wine was bottled after 10 months.

Sauvignon Gris 55%, Semillon 39%, Sauvignon Blanc 6%.

Beautiful rich and creamy wine showing green apple and spice flavours through to a lovely, long finish. Classy, elegant and full of flavour. A smooth, ripe wine bursting with white peach flavours and suberb lemon freshness. Concentrated apricot flavours on the palate are  generously kissed by spicy wood and the palate finishes with a long rich, toasty note. A classy and elegant white Bordeaux. 

ABV = 13.5%.

£15.05

Domaine Perraud Bourgogne Aligote 2017 (1x75cl)

Until 2005, the Perraud family was one of many making their living from growing grapes for the local cooperative. Encouraged by his parents, Jean-Christophe Perraud, then 24, began to make and bottle wine from the family's 25 hectares of Bourgogne, Mâcon and Saint-Véran vineyards and sold them on the local market until 2009. Produced from what the Perrauds describe as 'young vines' (both the Chardonnay and the Aligoté are between 20-25 years old), the wines show remarkable elegance, purity and complexity at modest price tags. Domaine Perraud is a fine example of a young vigneron striking out on his own with the family's vineyards to create what will soon be one of the Mâconnais' most respected domaines.

The Aligoté was all grown in Jean-Christophe Perraud's own vineyards in Mâcon, in the communes of La Roche Vineuse, Verzé and Salornay sur Guy. The Aligoté variety thrives on silex (flint) or chalk soils as found here and gives expressive, aromatic wines with excellent minerality. The grapes were machine harvested in the cool of early morning. This ensured a quick turnaround so that the precious stone fruit character was kept intact, without danger of oxidation.

For most producers, 2017 was a plentiful harvest with good concentration and expressive fruit. This achievement was not without effort. In the Mâconnais the summer heat meant that maintaining acidity was the main challenge. The high summer temperatures also affected the size of the berries, which resulted in good concentration but less juice. For Domaine Perraud, it was crucial to start the harvest at the end of August to preserve maximum acidity and achieve wines with both balance and freshness.

Wild yeasts were used for the fermentation and the malolactic fermentation was allowed to take place in order to encourage a round, supple feel. The wine rested for six months on its lees and was aged for a further four months in bottle to encourage complexity, before blending and then bottling. Only stainless steel was used.

100% Aligoté.

Bright lemon yellow in colour, with abundant aromas of citrus and stone fruit. The medium-bodied palate shows lovely purity of lemon and mineral flavours, balanced by riper peach and pear fruit, which last well on the elegant and refreshing finish.

ABV = 12.0%.

£13.45

Esporao Reserva White 2018 (1x75cl)

** IN STOCK FIRST WEEK OF OCTOBER - ARRIVING INTO UK NOW **

Awarded a Gold medal and 95 points at the 2020 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details and review).

For other 2020 DWWA winners, click here.

The Esporão project began in the Alentejo from an irrepressible desire to make the finest wines. This is the basis of everything they do. Part of the Alentejo’s montado ecosystem (cork oak forests), in Portugal, Herdade do Esporão has extraordinary conditions for agriculture – large thermal amplitudes, poor and various soils and extraordinary biodiversity that helps them produce in balance with the environment. With 691.9 hectares of vineyards, olive groves and other crops, they grow using organic methods.

Antao Vaz, 35%, Roupeiro 30%, Arinto 35%.

Please click the blue link below to see an excellent and informative tasting note / information sheet about this wine from the winemakers at Esporao.

Esporão Reserva White 2018 - fiche technique 

ABV = 13.5%.

£15.65

Gaia Wild Ferment Assyrtiko 2018 (1x75cl)

Awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their July 2019 article on Santorini (see blue link below).

Gaia Wild Ferment Assyrtiko 2018 - July 2019 Decanter review

The 2017 vintage was awarded a Platinum Medal and 97 points at the 2018 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details).

For other 2018 DWWA winners, click here.

One of the pioneers of the modern Greek wine revolution Gaia Estate was established in 1994 by Greek winemakers Leon Karatsalos and Yiannis Paraskevopoulos. Operating two different wineries they make cutting edge wines in both Nemea and Santorini. Gaia's main aim is to present the potential of the indigenous Greek grape varieties to wine enthusiasts worldwide.

The vineyard is located in Santorini. The terroir is recognised worldwide for its tremendous historical roots as the vineyards in this area date back 3,000 years. The low yielding vines are self rooted and are grown in soils which are poor in organic matter. The high sand content has ensured they have never been affected by phylloxera. The soils are also volcanic: porous with a high mineral content, which imparts a mineral quality to the resulting wine. The long sunshine hours, lack of rainfall, sea mists and strong summer winds all contribute to the unique microclimate. The surrounding Aegean Sea acts as a climatic buffer which softens the climate, so the extreme conditions and vintage variations are reduced. The vines are trained on traditional basket shaped systems called kouloura.

2018 was a good vintage in Santorini. Favourable weather conditions enabled the vines to ripen steadily and resulting in healthy grapes with excellent maturity.

The handpicked grapes were destemmed, crushed and cold soaked for 12 hours with skin contact at 10°C. The free run juice was then fermented naturally, using only natural yeasts. 50% of the must was fermented in stainless steel tanks, 35% in new oak casks (18% French and 17% American oak) and 15% in acacia casks. The temperature was allowed to rise naturally without any further intervention. From here, modern technology passed the baton to traditional winemaking and the fermentation developed at its own, gradual pace, with the prevailing yeast strains determining the wine's final character. In each tank and barrel, the wine fermented differently, so at the end of the fermentation each portion was tasted and carefully selected, according to the quality. With each vintage, a new dimension of this multifaceted variety is discovered. 

100% Assyrtiko.

"Toasty, smoky and funky on the nose with mineral dusting and brooding intensity. The palate is salty dry with laser-beam precision and very funky wild ferment layering of complexity with oak wreathed into the mix with sensitivity. The finish is dry, with lasting salty and tangy flavours. Unique and outstanding wine." (The Wine Gang)

ABV = 13.5%.

£28.50

Goats Do Roam White 2019 (1x75cl)

Charles Back, the owner of Fairview, is also the man behind Goats do Roam, which was launched in 1999. Goats do Roam is rare in that it is an amusing and original proposition allied to wines of good quality and value for money. Normally, these 'concept' wines put more money into marketing than into quality but, characteristically, Charles has done the opposite. The fruit for Goats is sourced primarily from Paarl, Malmesbury and Paardeberg. The 'legend' goes that some errant members of Fairview's long established goat herd, supplier of milk for Fairview's internationally award-winning cheeses, escaped one afternoon from their paddock into the Fairview vineyards when Charles Back's young son Jason accidentally left the paddock gate open. The little group happily roamed among the vineyards, showing rare discernment by selecting some of the ripest berries from some of the choicest vines. Their selection serves as the inspiration for the blends of these wines.

The Viognier, Roussanne and some of the Grenache Blanc for this blend was sourced from the Fairview farm on the slopes of Paarl Mountain, grown on decomposed granite soils. The majority of the Grenache Blanc is sourced from our vineyards in Darling. The Viognier, Roussanne, Grenache Blanc and Chenin Blanc grapes were picked between 22 and 23.5°Brix.

The fruit was destalked and crushed and then gently pressed. Only free run juice was used and the vineyard parcels were kept separate. The juice was cold fermented in stainless steel tanks and the individual components were left on their lees prior to blending and bottling.

This wine is a blend of 39% Roussanne , 38% Viognier, 13% Grenache Blanc, 10% Marsanne.

The Goats Do Roam White is a vibrant light green colour in the glass. There are complex aromas of lemon, peach, pear and floral notes. The palate is medium bodied with stone fruit and citrus flavours, with fresh lingering acidity. A lovely pairing with cream-based seafood and pasta dishes.

ABV = 13.5%.

£10.25
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