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Planeta Alastro Bianco 2017 (1x 75cl)

As sampled at Exel Wines' November 2018 tasting. See here for the report of that evening.

See blue link below for the excellent, 2017 fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers at Planeta.

Planeta Alastro 2017 - fiche technique

£12.50

Wieninger Wiener Riesling 2016 (1x75cl)

Fritz Wieninger is considered a pioneer of the “New Vienna” wine movement, combining a sense of modernity and progress with the traditions of the region and of his family, who have been making wine for over 100 years. “I try to use the numerous facets of my grape material,” Fritz says. “To be able to show the differences in site and vintage and to get the character of the vineyard into the bottle – this is my greatest challenge.”

This wine is a blend of Riesling grown in both Bisamberg and Nussberg. 25% of the grapes are sourced from Bisamberg, where the soil is sandy loess, and the remaining 75% is grown on the limestone chalky soils of Nussberg. Blending fruit from these contrasting sites adds depth and complexity to the final wine.

2016 was a difficult vintage. April experienced extreme frosts and hail storms, which resulted in a large percentage of crop loss. The following summer was wet, which caused high disease incidence. Luckily, weather in early autumn was far more favourable resulting in good quality fruit with balanced acidity and powerful aromatics.

Once at the winery, a period of maceration took place for five hours and the grapes were gently pressed. Temperature controlled, cool fermentation occurred using indigenous yeasts in stainless steel tanks to preserve freshness and purity. The wine aged on fine lees for approximately three months in order to add roundness to the wine. No oak was used in the winemaking process and bottling took place in January.

The wine is fragrant, fresh and shows complexity. The palate is elegant, light and tasty with a vibrant acidic structure. The subtle spice and citrus freshness make this wine an ideal companion for classic Austrian cuisine.

£14.45

Trimbach Riesling Reserve 2016 (1x 75cl)

Earning a listing for one of your wines at a Michelin-starred restaurant is a proud moment – so what must it be like to be featured by every single three Michelin-starred restaurant in France (that’s 27 in total)? It’s an accolade that reflects the historic excellence and purist vision of F. E. Trimbach, unquestionably one of the great names of Alsace and a family business that can trace its origins all the way back to 1626. Thirteen generations later, brothers Bernard and Hubert, plus Bernard’s sons, Pierre and Jean, and granddaughter Anne – remain true to the philosophy handed down to them by their 19th century ancestor, Frédéric Emile (the man who put the “F.E.” into F. E. Trimbach).

The “Réserve” quality is the result of a rigorous selection of fully-ripe grapes from the Ribeauvillé region. It defines a structured, balanced wine, which is both fruity and subtle.

White flowers, lemon notes and minerality touch on the nose. Fresh and vibrant, grapefruit and citrus, white peach, this wine has a long finish which is a sign of a beautiful future for the wine. This elegant Riesling, dry and precise, is a worthy accompaniment to a wide variety of dishes. It pairs well with sauerkraut, fish (fried, grilled, smoked, in a sauce, raw…), and white meats. The best vintages can be kept for ten years.

£18.55

Man O War Dreadnought Syrah 2015 (1x75cl)

The Man O’ War story begins with a special piece of land which has a rich history. Located at the eastern end of Waiheke Island, Man O’ War is a stunning array of coastal hillsides with high cliffs and pristine beaches forming a ruggedly beautiful coastline. It was along this coastline that Captain James Cook came to anchor during his first voyage around the islands of New Zealand in 1769. Upon sighting the ancient stands of magnificent kauri trees ashore, Cook noted in his journals that they would make ideal masts for the Man O' War battleships of the Royal Navy. Thus, the name Man O’ War was bestowed upon this unique land. With a desire to protect this treasured land’s natural beauty and sense of history for future generations, the owners purchased the four contiguous farms that now form the 4,500 acres of Man O’ War in the early 1980s. 

Typical aromas for Dreadnought Syrah include a smoky peat character that provides a savoury edge to the overt blueberry and pepper aromas, that mix of savoury and sweet that is reminiscent of the Northern Rhone is style. This wine has excellent fruit accessibility with a richly textured palate restrained with a streak of acidity and a mineral edge derived from a small portion of stem inclusion all supported by a classic Dreadnought tannin structure creating a complex and harmonious wine with plenty of ageing potential.

To see a comprehensive information sheet for this wine from the winemakers at Man O' War, please click on the blue link below.

Man O' War Dreadnought Syrah 2015 - fiche technique

£28.45

Trinity Hill Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2016 (1x75cl)

The 2015 vintage was Awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their February 2019 article "Rotundone: spice it up" about peppery flavours in wine; (see blue link below).

Trinity Hill Gimblett Gravels Vineyard Syrah 2015 - February 2019 Decanter review

Since its inception in 1993, partners John Hancock, who has been making wine in New Zealand for over 35 years, and Robert and Robyn Wilson, owners of The Bleeding Heart and The Don in London, have made Trinity Hill a byword for quality and consistency. Winemaker Warren Gibson has been with Trinity Hill since 1997. He is also in charge of the 80 hectares of vineyard owned by Trinity Hill, of which 47 are in the Gimblett Gravels. The Gimblett Gravels, planted on the former bed of the Ngaruroro River, is now a highly sought after sub-region renowned for the quality of its wines. The Trinity Hill wines have an elegance, balance, drinkability and precision of flavour. This estate was one of the first to plant grapes on the Gimblett Gravels in 1993.

The Gimblett Gravels winegrowing area is a small sub-region in the Hawkes Bay of New Zealand defined by a very unique stony soil type. This wine is made from estate grown grapes from the Tin Shed and Gimblett Stones vineyards.

2015 was a very warm season in Hawkes Bay with a typically dry late summer.

Grapes were hand harvested from a range of individual sites and clones and then fermented separately before blending. A range of maceration periods allowed for increased complexity. 20% whole bunches were included in the fermentations which contribute to freshness, aromatics and structure. The wine was aged for 14 months in a mixture of new and old 228 litre French oak barriques and larger 5,000 litre oak casks. This barrel ageing regime includes stirring of the lees and very minimal racking.

Deep and vibrant crimson in colour, with wild raspberry, blueberry, cracked pepper and hints of vanilla bean on the nose. Powerful, ripe tannins give the wine great structure. Oak plays a supporting role to the wine's pure fruit expression. This purity combined with refreshing natural acidity mean there is excellent potential for ageing. Development of mineral, gamey characters will result from bottle-age.

£20.10
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