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Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Pinot Noir 2017 (1x75cl)

"Medium-deep red-purple colour, youthful and fresh, as it is also on the nose. Bright Campari, bitter-herb aromas, with dominant red and black-cherry aromas. The wine is medium bodied and bright on the tongue, with remarkable depth of flavour for the money and plenty of soft, fine tannin. There is a lovely core of sweet fruit, too." 91 Points, Huon Hooke, 26 September 2018

Established in 1992, the Dicey family owns some of the oldest vineyards in the Bannockburn region of Central Otago on the famous Felton Road and have acquired land over the last ten years to build up to over 40 hectares, including six single vineyard sites. Their portfolio vineyards spans Central Otago from Gibbston to Lowburn Valley and on to Bendigo home still under Mount Difficulty at Bannockburn.

Central Otago provides New Zealand’s only continental climate, combined with unique soils ideally suited for growing Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris. The Bannockburn area, in particular, is one of the few sites outside of Burgundy that lends itself to the growing of the pernickety Pinot Noir grape; Mt Difficulty craft wines in the Burgundian style whilst stamping the uniqueness of the terroir to produce structured and serious wines. Not content with growing superb Pinot Noir, they are also known for their aromatic whites and grape varieties such as their grower series Lowburn Chardonnay and Estate Chenin Blanc.

Winemaker-in-chief Matt Dicey has a lifelong association with the wine industry and is a fourth-generation vigneron. After achieving a Masters Degree in Oenology and Viticulture, Matt spent four years gaining experience overseas.

As with all New Zealand wines, Mt Difficulty adhere to strict sustainability practices and constantly strive towards organic production.

Mount Difficulty is the name on the leading wines. The ‘second label’ is named Roaring Meg; these wines are produced in a more fruit-driven, early-drinking style and have become a mainstay of the Mt Difficulty stable since their introduction in 2003.

See the blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the team at Mt Difficulty.

Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Pinot Noir 2017 - fiche technique

This wine is 100% Pinot Noir.

The Roaring Meg is a classic example of Central Otago Pinot Noir. It exhibits a lovely mix of red and black berry fruits with further complexity gained from oak spice. The wine has a sweet berry palate which displays these same characters in abundance. Tannins rise gracefully out of the mid-palate to finish the wine; these are balanced by the wine’s natural acidity and fruit, to produce a long and fruit-driven finish.

£17.30

Urlar Riesling 2016 (1x 75cl)

** CURRENTLY UK-EXCLUSIVE TO EXEL AND OFFERED FOR THE FIRST TIME HERE **

** THIS IS A PRE-ORDER ITEM. PLEASE CONTACT US TO DISCUSS A POSSIBLE ORDER. **

"Fragrant and feminine with aromas of sweet mandarin and red apple, some florals rose layers and fresh wet rock soil ideas. Dry on the palate with vibrant acidity then flavours of citrus – both lime and lemon, some barley sugar and apples. Wild flowers and honeysuckle, long finish, a great aperitif and very tasty wine. Drink now and through 2030".

94 Points, Cameron Douglas MW

 

"Bright, very pale straw-yellow colour, a little lighter on the rim. The nose is fresh with taut and finely concentrated, bright aromas of lime fruit with subtle notes of white florals, honeysuckle and suggestions of toasty nuances. Dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate is tightly bound with an elegantly concentrated core of lime fruit, white florals and minerals with suggestions of honey and toast,  The palate is crisp with a fine-textured line of fruit extract and phenolics, with underlying thirst-quenching acidity.  The wine has very good linearity and carries to a long, lingering, soft-textured, dry finish.  This is a taut and finely concentrated dry Riesling with lime, floral and mouthwatering mineral flavours on a dry, textural palate with good linearity. Serve as an aperitif and with shellfish over the next 4-5 years.  Hand-picked fruit, WBP and cool-fermented to 12.0% alc. and 6.0 g/L RS, TA 8.2 g/L and pH 3.0.  Certified BioGro organic".  

18.0+/20, Raymond Chan, Dec 2017 

 

Proudly family-owned, Urlar Estate produces outstanding single vineyard wines using organic and biodynamic principles. Urlar is a Gaelic word that means “the Earth”. Their desire is to bring an abundance of life back to our ancient soils so that the drinker can discover the purity of flavour inherent in the land. Their journey from the highlands of Scotland to the stony soils and cool climate of Gladstone, Wairarapa has cemented a love for all things pure and true.

100% Riesling.

Only some 175 cases of this are made each year!

In the vineyard, in keeping with traditional techniques, the grapes were hand harvested with each bunch passing over a sorting table to ensure only the ripest of bunches were selected. The bunches were then gently pressed to avoid unattractive phenolics.

In the cellar, aromatic (German) yeasts - together with low fermentation temperatures - ensured the uniqueness of flavours from the site were captured. After a period on its lees (for 5 months) to add mid-palate weight and texture the wine was carefully filtered for bottling.

In homage to its stony origins, this dry styled Riesling has an underlying mineral thread throughout. Aromas include lime zest, granny smith apples and citrus which combine beautifully with a rich palate texture. A tight mineral thread runs the length of the palate making it delicious to drink now although cellaring for five years or more will be richly rewarded. It stands up well to lightly spiced tapas, Asian food and handles strong cheeses well.

Residual sugar is around 6-7g/litre - so on the cusp between dry and off-dry.

£14.50

Mt Difficulty Bannockburn (Series) Pinot Noir 2016 (1x75cl)

"Soft, supple and delicately fruity pinot noir with dark cherry, anise, spice, thyme and smoky oak flavours. Fresh acidity adds energy to this satisfyingly dry wine that's approachable now but should develop in the medium-term." 92 Points, Bob Campbell, New Zealand Master of Wine, 20 Feb 2018 

"Distinctive, with spicy nutmeg and silky cherry flavors that are juicy and bright, set on a supple frame and becoming more intriguing on the finish, where white pepper and dried rose petal notes emerge." 92 Points, Wine Spectator, 30 Sept 2018

Established in 1992, the Dicey family owns some of the oldest vineyards in the Bannockburn region of Central Otago on the famous Felton Road and have acquired land over the last ten years to build up to over 40 hectares, including six single vineyard sites. Their portfolio vineyards spans Central Otago from Gibbston to Lowburn Valley and on to Bendigo home still under Mount Difficulty at Bannockburn.

Central Otago provides New Zealand’s only continental climate, combined with unique soils ideally suited for growing Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris. The Bannockburn area, in particular, is one of the few sites outside of Burgundy that lends itself to the growing of the pernickety Pinot Noir grape; Mt Difficulty craft wines in the Burgundian style whilst stamping the uniqueness of the terroir to produce structured and serious wines. Not content with growing superb Pinot Noir, they are also known for their aromatic whites and grape varieties such as their grower series Lowburn Chardonnay and Estate Chenin Blanc.

Winemaker-in-chief Matt Dicey has a lifelong association with the wine industry and is a fourth-generation vigneron. After achieving a Masters Degree in Oenology and Viticulture, Matt spent four years gaining experience overseas.

As with all New Zealand wines, Mt Difficulty adhere to strict sustainability practices and constantly strive towards organic production.

Mount Difficulty is the name on the leading wines. The ‘second label’ is named Roaring Meg; these wines are produced in a more fruit-driven, early-drinking style and have become a mainstay of the Mt Difficulty stable since their introduction in 2003.

See the blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the team at Mt Difficulty.

Mt Difficulty Bannockburn Pinot Noir 2016 - fiche technique

This wine is 100% Pinot Noir.

The grapes for this wine come from their estate vineyards on the Felton Road. Handpicked and hand crafted, this wine reflects the nature of the vintage displaying great concentration and balance. Red fruits of the forest along with blackberries dominate the aroma, these are underpinned by savoury herb and liquorice. The wine has a abundant fruity front palate which is fleshy and well textured. Wonderful smooth silky tannins combine with a hint of oak and delivers a truly expressive pinot with mineral characteristics associated with Central Otago.

£24.20

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

£13.10

Urlar Select Parcels Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (1x 75cl)

** CURRENTLY UK-EXCLUSIVE TO EXEL AND OFFERED FOR THE FIRST TIME HERE **

** THIS IS A PRE-ORDER ITEM. ORDERS WILL REACH CUSTOMERS IN LATE MAY OR FIRST WEEK OF JUNE. WE DO HAVE A VERY LIMITED AMOUNT OF SPARE STOCK INCOMING THEN THAT CAN BE ORDERED BELOW. FOR STOCK BEYOND THIS (ie you arrive to find the "Buy" button disabled), PLEASE CONTACT US TO DISCUSS A POSSIBLE ORDER. **

"Very attractive bouquet of both variety and sense of place – a mix of sweet citrus fruits and peaches with some barrel spice and lees layers. Dry, high acidity, layers of flavours and textures, spice and ripe fruit. Long detailed finish, complex, balanced and well made. Drink now and through 2026".

95 points - Cameron Douglas, MW

 

"Bright straw-yellow colour with some depth, a little lighter on the rim.  This has an elegant and slender nose with finely concentrated and softly presented aromas of green stonefruits, gooseberries, fresh herbs and subtle nutty nuances.  The aromatics build in intensity with aeration to show depth and presence, unfolding mineral notes.  Dry to taste and medium-full bodied, the palate has restrained flavours of green stonefruits and gooseberries, fresh herbs, hints of lanolin and nutty notes.  The palate is stylish in presentation with fine textures and balanced, lacy acidity.  The wine carries to an elegant, lingering, nuanced finish.  This is a stylish oak-influenced Sauvignon Blanc with green stonefruit, gooseberry, herb and nutty flavours on a finely nuanced palate. Match with herb-marinated seafood and poultry dishes over the next 3 years.  Select vineyard parcels, given some skin contact and full barrel-fermented in seasoned French oak to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 10 months on less with some batonnage and partial MLF.  The wine is a barrel selection.  Certified BioGro organic".  

18.0/20 - Raymond Chan

 

"Full of personality, this is a weighty (14% abv), complex style of Sauvignon Blanc. Barrel-fermented and oak-aged for 10 month, it has concentrated, ripe, tropical fruit flavours, impressive complexity and a well-rounded, lasting finish".

 Michael Cooper (New Zealand's Listener magazine, March 2018)

Proudly family-owned, Urlar Estate produces outstanding single vineyard wines using organic and biodynamic principles. Urlar is a Gaelic word that means “the Earth”. Their desire is to bring an abundance of life back to our ancient soils so that the drinker can discover the purity of flavour inherent in the land. Their journey from the highlands of Scotland to the stony soils and cool climate of Gladstone, Wairarapa has cemented a love for all things pure and true.

See this blog on Urlar, especially regarding their organic credentials.

See blue link below for the fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers themselves.

Urlar Select Parcels Sauvignon Blanc 2015 - fiche technique

£18.00

Wieninger Wiener Riesling 2017 (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.

£15.60
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