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Williams & Humbert Dry Sack Medium (1x 75cl)

Williams & Humbert has been crafting award-winning Sherry since 1877. Founded by two intrepid Englishmen in Jerez de la Frontera, Williams & Humbert is today internationally recognised for the quality of its portfolio. The Williams & Humbert winery is located in the sherry triangle, a region with a unique microclimate.

Firstly, Amontillado, Oloroso and Pedro Ximenez Sherries are aged for a minimum of 3 years in the Dry Sack Criaderas. Following this period of ageing, these Sherries are blended together and added to the Dry Sack Criadera and Solera for a further ageing of over 3 years. This gives a minimum ageing time of 6 years. It is bright amber in colour, deep yet delicate bouquet with hints of nuts. Full on the palate, harmonious and mellow.

£12.05

Willowood Zinfandel Rose 2016 (1x75cl)

A lively, fruity rosé wine with aromas of red summer fruits and an attractive sweetness on the palate.

£7.95

Willunga 100 McLaren Vale Shiraz Viognier 2016 (1x75cl)

Willunga 100 is in McLaren Vale, south of Adelaide. The grapes for the wines come from a range of selected vineyards in McLaren Vale, including some that are over 80 years old. Winemaker Mike Farmilo joined the team as head winemaker in 2013 and is supported by Tim James. Together they aim to produce unique and distinctive wines which capture the essence of the region. They use modern equipment alongside traditional winemaking techniques to ferment the small parcels of fruit arriving at the winery. The term "hundred" originates from late Saxon and Norman England and refers to an administrative unit of government, meaning that 100+ households had to live in the area to qualify for its place on the map. Willunga 100 select their fruit from small parcels just as the district was divided up into '100s', or small lots.

The Shiraz fruit in this blend comes from the Mary Gordon Vineyard which is 15 years old, and the Hillside vineyard which is 21 years old. The latter is one of the first Shiraz ripening vineyards in the district located in the Sellicks Hill subregion at an elevated site with loam over limestone soils. This vineyard tends to produce bigger, bolder tannins due to the low yielding vines.

The 2016 vintage was a vintage of two distinct halves. Winter and spring were exceptionally dry and warm and the vines required additional irrigation to avoid heat stress. Thankfully, a number of rainstorms turned 2016 into one of the wettest and mildest ripening periods. This cool, wet period saved the harvest and allowed for a long maturation period, which resulted in wines with incredible structure and ageing potential.

Parcels of Shiraz were harvested in late February and March, with each one fermented separately, using open fermenters. A small part of Viognier was added with the Shiraz, giving an aromatic lift and brightness while also helping to stabilise the colour. Warm fermentation temperatures combined with regular pump-overs and plunging ensured optimum extraction. Only the best parcels were selected to produce the wine, which was matured in stainless steel as well as new and old French oak for 9-18 months. The Shiraz pressings were also added back into the blend to add complexity.

This well structured wine is deep purple in colour, on the nose, there are notes of plum, chocolate and cedar. The palate is rich and luscious with ripe black fruits harnessed by silky texture and supple tannins resulting in a lingering finish.

£12.00

Willunga 100 The Tithing Grenache 2016 (1x 75cl)

Willunga 100 is in McLaren Vale, south of Adelaide. The grapes come from a range of selected vineyards in McLaren Vale, including some over 80 years old. Winemaker Mike Farmilo joined the team as head winemaker in 2013 and is supported by Tim James. Together they aim to produce unique and distinctive wines which capture the essence of the region. They use modern equipment alongside traditional winemaking techniques to ferment the small parcels of fruit arriving at the winery. The term "hundred" originates from late Saxon and Norman England and refers to an administrative unit of government, meaning that 100+ households had to live in the area to qualify for its place on the map. Willunga 100 select their fruit from small parcels just as the district was divided up into '100s', or small lots.

The Tithing is made only in the best vintages, from small parcels of premium bush vine grapes grown in the Di Fabio Vineyard in the Blewitt Springs sub-region of McLaren Vale. The bush vines here have an average age of 60 years and the soils are North Maslin sand with a clay sub soil. These darker, heavier soils contribute an abundance of dark fruit and bold tannins.

2016 was a vintage of two distinct halves. Winter and spring were exceptionally dry and warm, and the vines required additional irrigation to avoid heat stress. Thankfully, a number of rainstorms gave 2016 one of the wettest and mildest ripening periods. This cool, wet period saved the harvest and allowed for a long maturation period, which resulted in wines with incredible structure and ageing potential.

Hand-picked fruit was open fermented at high temperatures with regular pump-overs and plunging down to ensure optimum early extraction. This regime was lessened toward the end of the ferment to maintain the delicate aromatics of the Grenache. The wine was matured in a mixture of older French oak Hogs Heads and new Ermitage and Taransaud Hogs Heads for nine months to add complexity and mid-palate richness. The wine was bottled under screwcap to maintain freshness and ensure longevity.

The Tithing is a dark, deep, rich style of Grenache, and shows how diverse this grape can be. The flavours of lifted dark fruit with powerful savoury overtones reflect the winemarking approach, which allows time in oak and bottle before release. Ripe, persistent tannins give the wonderfully balanced fruit great length and intensity.

£20.85

Xanadu (Estate) Chardonnay 2016 (1x75cl)

The 2014 vintage was awarded 94 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their September 2017 edition review of Australian Chardonnay (see blue link below). The 2016 vintage has not (yet) been reviewed by Decanter.

Xanadu Chardonnay 2014 - Sept 2017 Decanter review

See the link below for the full set of awards the Xanadu Estate Chardonnay 2016 has received

Xanadu (Estate) Chardonnay 2016 - awards

Xanadu was established by Dr John Lagan, an Irishman, who arrived in Margaret River in 1968 and was inspired by the pioneering spirit of the region. At the time, the potential of Margaret River as one of the world’s finest wine-producing regions was only just being considered. So less than a decade on, Dr Lagan with his wife Eithne established one of the region’s earlier vineyards, planting his first vines in 1977. Lovers of literature will remember Xanadu as Samuel Coleridge’s mysterious, idyllic, exotic city; home of Kubla Khan. Dr Lagan, himself a great literature enthusiast, drew parallels between Coleridge’s visions of utopia and his newly adopted home, and thus the name Xanadu was born.

The growing season began with an early budburst after a relatively mild winter with reasonable rainfall. The beautiful spring weather which followed which led to good flowering / fruit set and improved yields for most varieties in the region. Fine, warm weather during summer saw sugar accumulation accelerate quickly in the whites, until a significant rain event mid-January stalled the ripening process until the fine weather returned soon after. The warm, dry weather throughout February was fantastic, ensuring the whites achieved flavour ripeness. The 2016 Xanadu Chardonnay is predominantly Estate grown in the Wallcliffe sub-region, with 80% of the blend being made with fruit sourced from our Stevens Road and Lagan Estate vineyards. The remaining 20% was sourced from a mature Karridale vineyard.

Made entirely from Gingin clone Chardonnay which was whole bunch pressed followed by 100% barrel fermentation in select French oak (25% new oak). Wild fermentation was encouraged on all of the components, in order to introduce more complexity and personality into the wine. All of the individual batches which make up the blend were lees stirred throughout a nine-month oak maturation period, without any malolactic fermentation. The final blend was put together in November 2016.

The Xanadu Chardonnay has a pale straw colour. The bouquet of this elegant, yet striking Chardonnay offers both purity and complexity. Fresh pears, white-fleshed stone fruits, and grapefruit lead the charge, followed by the underlying characters of nougat, wafers and oatmeal with the subtle frangipani floral hints in the background. The palate is medium bodied and tightly coiled, again displaying pears, nectarine and tangy citrus flavours. The wine offers a fine-boned structure complemented by a lovely creamy mouthfeel derived from lees stirring. Refined yet complex, the intense fruit and racy acidity combine to focus the wine perfectly to a crisp, lingering fruit finish.

To see Xanadu's information sheet for this wine, please click on the blue link below.

Xanadu (Estate) Chardonnay 2016 - fiche technique

£16.75

Xanadu Exmoor Chardonnay 2017 (1x75cl)

** This wine has previously been named Exmoor Drive Chardonnay. **

See the link below for the full set of awards the Xanadu Exmoor Chardonnay 2017 has received

Xanadu Exmoor Chardonnay 2017 - awards

Xanadu was established by Dr John Lagan, an Irishman, who arrived in Margaret River in 1968 and was inspired by the pioneering spirit of the region. At the time, the potential of Margaret River as one of the world’s finest wine-producing regions was only just being considered. So less than a decade on, Dr Lagan with his wife Eithne established one of the region’s earlier vineyards, planting his first vines in 1977. Lovers of literature will remember Xanadu as Samuel Coleridge’s mysterious, idyllic, exotic city; home of Kubla Khan. Dr Lagan, himself a great literature enthusiast, drew parallels between Coleridge’s visions of utopia and his newly adopted home, and thus the name Xanadu was born.

The 2017 growing season began with late budburst after a relatively cold, wet winter. The mild spring which followed ensured that there was good flowering and fruit set, in fact some yields needed to be addressed with crop thinning. Fine, mild conditions prevailed during summer, which ended up being one of the coolest growing seasons in recent years. Harvest commenced late, at the end of February. March was relatively wet with a significant rain event after most of the white fruit had been picked. Fortunately, the April that followed was glorious (the driest April since 1982 infact) with fine weather and no heat extremes experienced at all.

All the grapes were pressed without crushing, retaining relatively high solids in the juice after settling overnight. 65% of the blend was fermented in seasoned French oak barriques (only 5% new oak in final blend), the remaining 35% of the blend was fermented in tank using an aromatic yeast strain. Wild fermentation was encouraged on barrel fermented components, in order to introduce complexity and personality into the wine. All of the individual barrel fermented batches which make up the blend were lees stirred throughout a nine-month oak maturation period, without any malolactic fermentation; gaining texture throughout the year. The final blend was put together in November 2017.

The Xanadu Exmoor Chardonnay is pale straw in colour. The bouquet of this fresh, fruit-driven Chardonnay displays honeydew melon, pear, and citrus characters with underlying hints of loquats and hay. Oak is merely a bystander, yet its subtle influence adds another layer to the fruit aromas. The palate is medium bodied offering gala apples and stone fruits with a delicate creamy texture derived from lees stirring. A bright refreshing wine; crisp and dry, with a lingering fruit finish. In conclusion, this is a fresh, fruit-driven style of Chardonnay, with oak simply playing a supporting role in the background. The wine is best consumed in its youth however certainly suitable for medium-term cellaring.

To see Xanadu's information sheet for this wine, please click on the blue link below.

Xanadu Exmoor Chardonnay 2017 - fiche technique

£11.85

Xanadu Exmoor Drive Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2016 (1x75cl)

** This wine has previously been named Exmoor Drive Sauvignon Blanc Semillon. **

See the link below for the full set of awards the Xanadu Exmoor Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2016 has received

Xanadu Exmoor Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2016 - awards

Xanadu was established by Dr John Lagan, an Irishman, who arrived in Margaret River in 1968 and was inspired by the pioneering spirit of the region. At the time, the potential of Margaret River as one of the world’s finest wine-producing regions was only just being considered. So less than a decade on, Dr Lagan with his wife Eithne established one of the region’s earlier vineyards, planting his first vines in 1977. Lovers of literature will remember Xanadu as Samuel Coleridge’s mysterious, idyllic, exotic city; home of Kubla Khan. Dr Lagan, himself a great literature enthusiast, drew parallels between Coleridge’s visions of utopia and his newly adopted home, and thus the name Xanadu was born.

A relatively mild, warm winter resulted in an early budburst to kick-start the 2015 growing season. This was followed by some relatively wild spring weather however with wet, windy conditions affecting fruit set and resulting in low yields across most varieties in the region. Beautiful, warm weather returned in summer which saw flavour ripening accelerate quickly, bringing about Xanadu's earliest vintage on record. A lack of Marri blossom leading up to and during harvest meant that the birds pecking at the grapes was an extreme issue, with netting proving to be absolutely vital for the 2015 season.

The fruit was crushed, destemmed and chilled before pressing. The settled, clean juice was then fermented at 15°C in stainless steel tanks using aromatic yeast strains to retain fresh varietal characteristics. The final components are then selected and assembled prior to stabilisation and bottling under screw cap closure.

This wine has a pale straw colour with a slight green tinge. The vibrant bouquet exhibits fresh passionfruit and citrus characters, with dried herbs and hints of lemon sherbet in the background. Medium bodied, the zesty palate offers freshly squeezed lemon/lime flavours combined with tropical fruits and a touch of spice. An easy drinking ‘Classic’ Margaret River wine style with wonderful purity – crunchy, fruit driven, lip-smacking dry with crisp acidity and a clean refreshing finish.

To see Xanadu's information sheet for this wine, please click on the blue link below.

Xanadu Exmoor Drive Sauvignon Semillon 2016 - fiche technique

£11.45

Yalumba - FSW8B - Botrytis Viognier 2015 (1x 37.5cl)

Awarded 94 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their May 2017 edition "Steven Spurrier's Fine Wines" column (see blue link below).

Yalumba FSW8B 2015 - May 2017 Decanter review

Yalumba has been developing its own sustainable viticulture program since the mid 1990s. This starts in the vineyard and extends to every aspect of winemaking, production, packaging and distribution. Many awards and milestones have resulted due to sustainability now being at their core. All Yalumba wines were announced vegetarian and vegan friendly as of 2011. Yalumba is the first wine company in the world to receive the Climate Protection Award from the US Environmental Protection Agency, 2007. Yalumba’s focus on sustainability is all about respecting the natural environment around them. “We’re convinced our efforts in protecting our natural resources reflect in the quality of wines we make,” says fifth-generation Proprietor Robert Hill-Smith. “Quite simply, if we’re to focus on excellence in winemaking, it absolutely requires excellence in environmental management – the two are inseparable."

This wine is 100% Viognier.

To see an excellent information sheet and tasting note for this wine which has been created by the team at Yalumba, please click on the blue link below.

Yalumba "FSW8B" Botrytis Viognier - fiche technique

£16.25

Yealands Estate Black Label Gruner Veltliner 2017 (1x75cl)

Awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their September 2018 edition panel tasting of "Alternative" New Zealand Whites (not Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay) (see blue link below)...

Yealands Estate Black Label Gruner Veltliner 2017 - Sept 2018 Decanter review

When Peter Yealands shared his vision to become the world’s most sustainable wine producer, he already knew that the only way to craft truly beautiful, award-winning wines was in partnership with nature, and that compromising his deeply-rooted sustainability values was simply not an option. Today his philosophy holds true and forms the basis of Yealands' approach to winemaking. Peter’s trademark “can do” attitude is the stuff of legend. Happiest working the land at the controls of a bulldozer or digger, Peter has a track record of making pioneering, innovative plans come to fruition.

Seaview Vineyard in the Awatere Valley is exposed to some of the toughest growing conditions in Marlborough; high sunshine and wind, cool nights and low rainfall which produces a smaller, thicker skinned berry with intense fruit flavours. Our parcel of Grüner Veltliner is located on a sheltered north facing slope, on our Seaview vineyard. The soil is predominantly windblown loess.

The fruit was whole bunch pressed into tank to cold settle for 72 hours after which the clear juice was racked carefully, warmed and inoculated with selected yeast. A portion was transferred into 2nd and 3rd year French oak barriques and a 1000 litre French oak oval, to undergo fermentation naturally. Another small portion was fermented in a small concrete egg shaped vessel. All portions remained on lees for three months with twice weekly stirring to build the texture of the wine. The wine was blended, stabilised then filtered prior to bottling.

This Grüner Veltliner shows lifted notes of white pepper, citrus blossom and honey. The palate is rich and multi-layered with complementary savoury notes of pepper and spice, which integrates well with fine mineral acidity. Extremely versatile especially with Asian cuisine, seafood, chicken & pork. This wine is suitable for vegetarians, vegans and gluten free diets.

£14.10

Yealands Estate Black Label PGR 2018 (1x75cl)

Awarded 89 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their September 2018 edition panel tasting of "Alternative" New Zealand Whites (not Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay) (see blue link below)...

Yealands Estate Black Label PGR 2017 - Sept 2018 Decanter review

When Peter Yealands shared his vision to become the world’s most sustainable wine producer, he already knew that the only way to craft truly beautiful, award-winning wines was in partnership with nature, and that compromising his deeply-rooted sustainability values was simply not an option. Today his philosophy holds true and forms the basis of Yealands' approach to winemaking. Peter’s trademark “can do” attitude is the stuff of legend. Happiest working the land at the controls of a bulldozer or digger, Peter has a track record of making pioneering, innovative plans come to fruition.

Seaview Vineyard in the Awatere Valley is exposed to some of the toughest growing conditions in Marlborough; high sunshine and wind, cool nights and low rainfall which produces a smaller, thicker skinned berry with intense fruit flavours.  The cool site regularly commences harvest up to one week later than other sub regions of Marlborough. All three aromatic varieties sit on sheltered, north facing slopes. The soil is predominantly wind blown loess. 

Three aromatic parcels; Pinot Gris, Riesling and Gewurztraminer, were selected and harvested together. The fruit was crushed, de-stemmed then gently pressed, with the free run juice going to a stainless tank and the pressings portion going to a 1000L French oak oval and a selection of old French oak barriques. The free run juice in the stainless steel tank was settled for 72hrs and then the clear juice was then racked off to another stainless tank for a long cool fermentation to enhance the pure fruit flavours. The pressings portion in oak went through a natural fermentation and the french oak oval and barrels were stirred twice weekly post fermentation to develop structure and texture. Upon achieving a finely balanced blend, the wine was stabilised and filtered prior to bottling.

Brimming with concentrated notes of lychee and pear, underlying flavours of lime and mandarin and a touch of spice and ginger. The palate shows good fruit concentration, and a wonderful balance between texture, fruit weight and acidity, with a bright citrus finish.  Beautifully matched with all Asian cuisine, seafood, chicken and pork dishes.  This wine is suitable for vegetarians, vegans and gluten free diets.

£13.90

Yealands Estate Black Label Pinot Gris 2017 (1x75cl)

"Thinking differently is what we do at Yealands. Crafting award-winning wines in harmony with nature has seen us lead the world in sustainable winegrowing. But most importantly, it means great tasting wines which don’t cost the earth."

The Seaview Vineyard in the Awatere Valley is exposed to some of the toughest growing conditions in Marlborough; high sunshine and wind, cool nights and low rainfall which produces a smaller, thicker skinned berry with intense fruit flavours. This Pinot Gris is made from two blocks from the Seaview Vineyard. One being, block L6M which is relatively flat and coastal and this site gives a pure mineral quality that is the structural backbone to the palate of the Single Vineyard Pinot Gris. The other parcel, block E6 that makes the Single Vineyard grade is located on a sheltered north facing slope, within the Seaview Vineyard. This pocket gives luscious ripe pear and quince aromas that makes this wine so alluring.

The two blocks were harvested over two days in mid-April. The fruit was crushed, destemmed then pressed gently prior to cold settling for 72 hours. A portion (10%) was racked directly to older French barriques to undergo fermentation. The balance was racked to a small stainless steel tank and fermented separately using a selected yeast. A long cool fermentation followed. The parcels were then kept on lees for a period of two months, with some stirring to help gain texture and structure. The wine was then blended, stabilised and filtered prior to bottling.

Brimming with concentrated notes of poached pears and melon, as well as underlying flavours of quince and a touch of ginger. The palate is full-bodied and luscious, showing wonderful balance between texture, fruit weight and mineral acidity, with a long dry finish.  Enjoy with poultry and mushroom dishes such as creamy pasta with porcini, or heavier seafood dishes.

This wine is suitable for vegetarians, vegans and gluten free diets.

£13.55

Yealands Estate Single Block L5 Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (1x75cl)

The L5 block is known for its intense mineral and herbal character. Pure, lifted flavours of wild thyme and citrus characterise the nose. The palate is rich and textured, defined by firm mineral flavours that give the wine exceptional length.

£15.15

Yealands Estate Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (1x 75cl)

The 2017 vintage was awarded a Gold Medal and 95 points at the 2018 Decanter World Wine Awards (click link for details) but has alas now sold out at the UK importer. We offer the excellent 2018.

For other 2018 DWWA winners, click here.

Yealands' Seaview Vineyard in the Awatere Valley is exposed to some of the toughest growing conditions in Marlborough; high sunshine and wind, cool nights and low rainfall which produces a smaller, thicker skinned berry with intense fruit flavours. This wine is a blend of two different blocks on the property – one warmer, sheltered inland block and a coastal block. The wine brings together in harmony the diverse spectrums of the blocks; the warmer site contributing the expressive aromatics and the cooler site giving the mineral backbone and length.

The two parcels of land in vineyard were  harvested individually over two days. The fruit was de-stemmed then pressed gently prior to cold settling for 72 hours. The clear juice was then racked off and each parcel was fermented separately using two different yeasts. A long cool fermentation followed to capture and enhance the pure aromatics. The wine was blended, stabilised and filtered prior to bottling.

Marlborough experienced a mild-to-cool spring period, which ensured that the vines naturally produced lighter than average yields. These mild temperatures then extended into the summer months, coupled with an unseasonal period of rain, which ultimately alleviated the drought conditions we had experienced over the past two years. Carrying lighter than usual crops along with the cooler weather meant vintage started only a week later than previous years.

This wine shows flavours of passionfruit and blackcurrant leaf with underlying notes of wet stone and thyme. The palate displays good weight and texture, with a focused mineral acidity which delivers fantastic length to the wine.

£12.40

Zabu `Il Passo` Nerello Mascalese 2017 (1 x 75cl)

This is a young estate in southwestern Sicily, whose vineyards caught the eye and winemaking talents of Valentino Sciotti. Valentino (of Gran Sasso and Vesevo) saw they had great vineyards and a good winery but were missing the necessary expertise to make wines the market required. Valentino and his team of young winemakers have taken the raw materials and transformed them into wines that people want to drink.

The vineyards for Vigneti Zabù were planted in 2005 on the hills around Lake Arancio in Sambuca di Sicilia in southwestern Sicily. The uncontaminated area of Sambuca di Sicilia is a rich land with ancient vineyards. Lake Arancio, with its crystal-clear water, creates a perfect microclimate for viticulture.

The 2017 vintage was characterised by relatively low rainfall, which was mainly concentrated in the autumn and winter months. Higher than average temperatures in July and August caused the grapes to ripen 1-2 weeks earlier than usual. Despite the high temperatures, the good diurnal temperature range ensured healthy grapes with good aromatic and phenolic ripeness.

Harvest for the 2017 vintage began in the first week of September and finish at the beginning of October, which ensured the grapes were ripened fully. The grapes were pressed before a long maceration on the skins. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at controlled temperatures of 20-22°C. The wine was then aged for up to seven months in French oak barriques before bottling.

This wine is bright ruby red in colour. On the nose, there are intense aromas of red fruits combined with hints of coffee, spice and cocoa thanks to the oak ageing. On the palate, it is vibrant, well-balanced with soft tannins and a long, silky finish.

£13.40
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