Awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2018 edition review of Spanish Value Wines (under £20); (see blue link below).
The dream of Adur began when Maitena and Héctor Gómez were establishing their winemaking careers. As their abilities and command of the winemaking process grew, they began to think of a winery of their own. The pull of Maitena’s family roots led them back to the Basque country, in the tiny Txakolina Getariako DO.
Sourced from 3 hectares of vines in Getaria, the yields are carefully controlled in order extract maximum intensity of aromas from the Hondarribi Zuri grape.
Fermentation takes place in French barrels all from the first press at a temperature of 12 ºC. 10% of the wine then undergoes malolactic to slightly reduce the acidity and provide more weight and balance on the palate. The Txakoli is then left in contact with the lees for 6 months to add volume and texture.
Wonderfully intense and elegant on the nose with white fruit, pear, fresh herbs and citrus notes. The palate is searingly fresh with poise and tension, notable salinity a long, complex finish.
This wine is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Awarded 88 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2018 edition review of Galician Whites; (see blue link below).
The grapes for this lively wine come from some of the best sites in the Avia Valley and were hand harvested in September. They then undergo a whole bunch cold soak for eight hours. They are then crushed and pressed and fermented for 14 days at controlled temperatures of 16C in stainless steel tanks. There is no malolactic fermentation.
Ailala Treixadura is pale gold in colour with lively reflections. There are clean, powerful aromatics on the nose with apricot, white flowers and a sort of saline, sea-shell undertone. Spices such as clove, mint and fennel are also present. The palate displays sweet lemon and ripe melon with plenty of zing and grapefruit peel. A wine of great complexity and style and with bags of character. Treixadura is truly a noble grape!
This delicate, noble white pairs excellently with all seafood; crab linguine, steamed razor clams, or pan-fried seabass.
For many, Puligny-Montrachet is the ultimate white wine location thanks to its perfect aspect and well-drained limestone soil. Alain Chavy’s Puligny-Montrachet comes from several parcels around Puligny from vines planted between 1965 and 1974. Parcels near Meursault have heavier soils, bringing body and power, while the gravel-limestone soils around Chassagne contribute elegance and minerality.
Alain’s cellar is located in the basement of an outbuilding adjoining his house. Whilst vinification is traditional, with all the wines being fermented and matured in traditional French oak barriques, Alain has installed ambient temperature control throughout his cellar to ensure optimum maturation conditions.
Alain inoculates for fermentation and believes in keeping bâtonnage to a minimum. He uses a combination of 400-liter oak puncheons and up to 25% new Burgundian pièce for the village-level wines. “We’re looking for a balance between the fruit and oak character,” explains Alain. “We want the wines’ minerality to show through.”
This Puligny-Montrachet is bursting with ripe tropical fruit characters, balanced by a concentrated limey acidity and lick of spicy oak.
The Meursault is bright, luminous straw yellow in colour. The nose boasts a discrete touch of toast followed by elegant floral notes underpinned by fruity, light plum and pear aromas. The palate is powerful, well balanced and dense, with delicious flavours of brioche. The finish is long and very aromatic.
The 2015 vintage was awarded 88 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2018 edition review of Galician Whites (but was alas already sold out by the release of the magazine!); (see blue link below).
Adega Algueira is responsible for producing some of the most interesting and esoteric wines this side of the equator. It’s interesting to think that the Old World is still capable of throwing up a few surprises using native grape varieties. Former El Bulli sommelier, Ferran Centelles, is not a man prone to hyperbole, so when he described Adega Algueira as ‘truly a revelation,’ the world sat up and took notice. Located in the spectacular Galician region of Ribeira Sacra, the hard work starts in the vineyard. The impossibly steep slopes can only be compared to those in the Mosel in Germany where it is only possible to pick the grapes by hand. The winery utilises biodynamic practices across its land and uses wild yeast to ferment the wines. Grapes like Merenzao, Alvarello, Loureiro or Treixadura may sound a little strange and intimidating, but our advice is to dive straight in.
The Algueira winery is located in the midst of old chestnut and oak tree forests,on the banks of the river Sil, where the monks built their monasteries back in the 12th Century, A scenario which reflects the calm and peacefulness necessary for the creation of their wines. The building is integrated into the surrounding nature, and it resembles a monastic Romanesque building. The winery relies on leading, new technologies to make and bottle their wine.
This wine was fermented in stainless steel without yeast inoculation and was then aged for one year in bottle.
This white wine is made from a blend of Spanish grape varieties, mostly Godello and Albarino. It is a fresh and fruity wine, with floral aromas and flavours of citrus and melon. Flavours of peach and nectarine are well-balanced by fresh citrus fruit. This wine is characterised by its creamy texture and silky finish.
Alpha Zeta was created in 1999 by UK wine importer, David Gleave MW, and New Zealand winemaker, Matt Thomson with this belief in mind. They realised that the key is to marry local grape growers with impeccable winemaking. All Alpha Zeta wines are made from indigenous grape varieties grown in the hills north-east of Verona. The flavours of the grape shine through in the glass offering great value, quality and balance. Matt works with local Veronese grape growers in hillside vineyards to select parcels of fruit, rather than buying in bulk wine. They have worked together to reduce yields and the grapes are now picked later. In this way, they have been able to improve grape quality and obtain riper flavours.
The fruit for this wine is grown in special, selected old vineyards with excellent south-east exposure, where growers have reduced their yields quite considerably to produce excellent quality fruit.
The grapes were hand harvested, de-stemmed, crushed and chilled on the way to the press with no addition of sulphur. The juice was naturally settled, racked and cultured yeasts were added to initiate fermentation which took place at 12-14°C. The wine is held in temperature controlled stainless steel before bottling.
The Alpha Zeta Pinot Grigio has characterful aromas of ripe peach and pear and slight hints of flint. It is refreshing and crisp on the finish.
Pale lemon in colour. Clean and lively, with a fresh, lightly perfumed almond blossom character on the nose which gives way to a ripe but fresh, apple and pear flavours on the soft palate. Vivacious citrus notes give the wine a crisp finish.
Awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their March 2018 edition review of Galician Whites; (see blue link below).
The winery was founded by José Pérez Pousa on the banks of the Miño river in 2014, with the wish to preserve the tradition of their native land, where wine has been produced since the 2nd century BCE. The wine is named ‘alter’ to mean ‘another wine more’ in Latin.
Alter has 24 hectares of its own vineyards, which are divided into 168 small plots planted with native white varieties Treixadura, Godello and Loureira. The vines are on average 15-30 years old and are planted on decomposed granite, with sand and clay. The vineyards benefit from a perfect mesoclimate with good diurnal ranges particularly during the growing season. Fruit is able to fully ripen while retaining fresh acidity.
The 2016 harvest started a little later than in 2015 in Ribeiro and took place steadily over six weeks. Fruit was high in quality even with volumes being down by 18% largely due to heavy spring rains and outbreaks of mildew in April and May. The adverse weather had a greater impact on non-indigenous grapes than it did for local grapes such as Treixadura and Loureira.
The wine is a blend of 80% Treixadura, 15% Godello and 5% Loureira fermented in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks and then aged on the lees for 3-6 months to add depth.
The wine is aromatic with aromas of white flowers, grapefruit and green apple. The palate is lively with brisk acidity, white peach and a delightful savouriness that prompts you to reach for another glass.
Alto Bajo is produced from vineyards across Chile's Valle Central by a terrific team led by winemaker Camilo Viani, who brings vitality and vision - as well as a great eye for winemaking detail.
“Alto Bajo” translates as “High Low” and reflects the varied regional landscape of Chile. This Chardonnay is deliciously fruity with lots of ripe, tropical fruit flavours but also the tiniest hint of vanilla. It matches well with the following foods: chicken, ham or bacon, pate and terrines.
The previous 2016 vintage was 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).
The Amalaya wines offer incredible value for their quality and truly reflect their ‘sense of place‘. All of the Amalaya wines are fruit driven in style, with a finesse that unites them.
The Torrontes and Riesling grapes were both grown on the Finca Amalaya and Finca Las Mercedes 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 winery is also situated in Cafayate, Calchaquí Valley in Salta in the far north of Argentina at nearly 1,828 metres above sea level.
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.
Intense gold in colour with tints of green. On the nose this wine is intense and complex with aromas of citrus and grapefruit typical of Torrontes. Delicate and silky on the palate with great freshness and crisp acidity on the distinctly mineral finish.
Outstanding. The wine exhibits a straw colour and subtle vanillin and spice aromas are noticeable in the aromatics, a creamy texture, admirable finesse and complexity and a surprisingly fat concentration and length.
Fruity, youthful style, reminiscent of nuts and peaches, already exhibits the trademark Anselmi complexity. No wood maturation, clean crisp flavours, long finish.
The baby brother of the iconic Cervaro della Sala is an exceptional wine in its own right, with a richly structured palate and aromas of apples, vanilla and toast.