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Rhone 2013 tasting: Our highlights

Wednesday night   was our annual Rhone tasting. This tasting is always a real pleasure, thanks not only to wines that constitute a super tasting experience, but also thanks to the conviviality, openness and bon viveur of the producers of the Rhone. Over the past few weeks, cardboard boxes full of all the delights of spring

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Brunello 2010: ‘Vintage of a Lifetime?’

James Suckling recently labelled Brunello di Montalcino’s 2010 ‘a vintage of a lifetime’. I must admit, I’m wary of such descriptions. They risk devaluing previous and subsequent harvests; what, for example, if there were another ‘vintage of a lifetime’ in five, ten, twenty years? Feeling that 2010 Brunello deserved appraisal with Mr Suckling’s words ringing

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Kumeu River – Burgundy, a world apart?

Old World. New World. There is a tendency amongst wine writing and wine writers to compare the two in every way they can. Understandable; maybe. The old world remains the known, the new world is perhaps the unknown. The suitability of these comparisons is a debate for another day, another article. But in the meantime,

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Ornellaia’s Le Serre Nuove Vertical Tasting 20th October 2014

Micah, our buying assistant, shares his thoughts on a recent vertical tasting of La Serre Nuove, second wine of Ornellaia:   This week spelled a lucky opportunity for the wine trade – a chance to taste through a rare collection of previous vintages of Serre Nuove courtesy of celebrated winemaker, Axel Heinz. Axel’s experience in

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Vin de Constance from Klein Constantia – A taste of history?

“My dear,” said she, entering, “I have just recollected that I have some of the finest old Constantia wine in the house that ever was tasted, so I have brought a glass of it for your sister. My poor husband! how fond he was of it! Whenever he had a touch of his old colicky

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Penfolds – Corporate but Brilliant

Today marked the launch of the newest releases from Penfolds. Is there any other wine-producing country where one single producer is so preeminent? Chateau Musar in Lebanon, perhaps, but Lebanese wines doesn’t find itself on the dinner tables of Britain quite as often as its Aussie counterparts. So understandably Penfolds releases tend to be accompanied

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Bordeaux 2014 – First impressions from the harvest

After the trials and tribulations of the 2013 vintage, wine lovers everywhere await news of the 2014 harvest with bated breath. Our Buyer, Nick Dagley and Director, Dave Smith visit Bordeaux every year at this time to garner first impressions of the vintage. Nick shares his initial thoughts: Dave and I have just returned from

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First do no Harm….

A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to be invited to a workshop held by the charismatic Colin Ross, estate manager of the biodynamic New Zealand estate, Seresin. Biodynamism is a word that divides peoples’ opinions and loyalties. I’m sure that a quick straw poll of wine lovers would find a medley of viewpoints:

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Ich bin perplexed…

Whilst not strictly visiting wine country, Hayley from our Fine Wine Trading team still managed to garner some interesting information about German wine drinking habits, in a place many Germans don’t even believe exists…(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bielefeld_Conspiracy) “Thundering along the autobahn at 100 MPH in the relentless summer sun (there are no speed limits on large sections of the German motorway),

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Masters of Riesling…part 2

More from Paula’s trip to Germany. “After more bread, cheese and meat for breakfast we headed off to Villa Wolf at Wachenheim in the Pfalz, the estate and vineyards leased by Ernie Loosen. One of the winemakers, Sumi, greeted us on arrival along with Mucke, a splendid Great Dane that took quite a shine to

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