Last few of this Portuguese dreamboat. Looking for something big and juicy with a bit of spice thrown in? Give this a go...

The Symington family have a long history of winemaking in the Douro valley, Northern Portugal. The family's association with the region dates back to 1652. Today, the Symington family own 1,006 hectares of vineyards in the region, the largest of any producer. The company remains 100% family owned with 5 family members actively working in the company.

The Douro valley enjoys a unique status as the world's oldest demarcated wine region and UNESCO world heritage site. Use of indigenous Douro varietals produces wines of unique and distinctive character.

Quinta do Ataide red wine is made from grapes grown on this fine 81-hectare vineyard in the remote Vilarica Valley of the Douro Superior. The vineyards at Quinta do Ataide played a key role in the recovery of the Touriga Nacional varietal in the early 1980's. Now, with some 30 years of age, these Ataide vineyards are producing wonderfully elegant wines.

Symington Family Quinta do Ataíde Douro 2014 @ £13.95 - Buy it here!

Attractive aromas of ripe red fruits, scented with red plum and thyme. On the palate, this wine is spicy and savoury, with good weighty flavours balanced with peppery tannins and good acidity. Blend of traditional Douro grape varieties - Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Cao.

 

Sound good? Thought so! Don't miss your chance, only 6 remaining! Cheers!

Wowee! Krug! One of the most famous champagne houses in the world. Everyone's heard of them. But not everyone knows about their story and where they came from. Let's have a good look into who they are...

The story of the House of Krug illustrates the amazing adventure of its founder, Joseph Krug, a visionary non-conformist with an uncompromising philosophy. Having understood that the true essence of Champagne is pleasure itself, his dream was to be able to offer the very best Champagne he could create every single year, regardless of the harvest and annual variations in climate. “Our unconventional practices, making choices that were not necessarily the easiest ones and going beyond established rules, have been part of our vision, ever since the House was founded” explains Olivier Krug, sixth generation of the Krug family.

Paying close attention to the vineyard’s character, respecting the individuality of each plot and its wine as well as building an extensive library of reserve wines from many different years, allowed Joseph Krug to fulfill his objective. He founded a House in which all Champagnes are different expressions of nature and have the same undisputed quality and distinction. Since 1843, six generations of the Krug family have maintained the dream, enriching Joseph’s vision and savoir-faire.

Individuality is at the core of Krug philosophy. Individuality means distinction, uniqueness, originality and singularity: everything that is expressed by Krug Champagnes. At the House of Krug, we prize the distinctive stamp of every vineyard, and the distinctive character of every wine… and every bottle. This is Krug ID’s “raison d’être”. Each consumer can discover the story of their bottle using the six digit number that appears on the back label. A rich and interactive Krug application, available on mobile and tablet, allows to scan directly the Krug ID and give an immediate access to its unique history: harvest challenges of the year revealed by Eric Lebel, Cellar Master of the House of Krug, last ratings from experts, food inspiration to pair with each cuvee, as well as recommendations to store Krug Champagne. The Krug ID also serves as a simple reference with which to build a collection of different bottles of Krug Champagne to age and enjoy in the future.

Krug Grand Cuvée Champagne 163rd Edition @ £139.95 - Buy it here!
“The NV Grand Cuvée 163 Edition is wonderfully open-knit and giving, qualities that make it a terrific choice for drinking now and over the next 30 or so years. Pastry, apricot, lemon confit, chamomile and white flowers, along with soft contours, give the wine its inviting, alluring personality. There is more than enough energy and overall freshness to support several decades of fine drinking. Even so, the 163 is virtually impossible to resist at this early stage.”

Antonio Galloni MW, 95/100pts

If we had enough of their wines available at one time I would show you one every single day. We think Chapel Down are one of the best producers in the world right now. Showing everyone what we are capable of. Let's find out a bit more about this one...

Chapel Down is one of England’s most successful wineries, whose first vineyard in Tenterden, Kent, was planted in 1977. It is now the largest UK wine producer, making a range of Champagne-style sparkling wine and aromatic white, red and rosé wines, and has won a plethora of accolades. The Tenterden vineyard is home to its state-of-the-art winery, headed by winemaker Josh Donaghay-Spire who gained experience in wineries in Alsace, Champagne and South Africa.

The south-east of England is blessed with a cool, maritime climate and a wide varieties of soils and slopes with which the Chapel Down team can match the appropriate grape varieties to their ideal conditions. As well as its Tenterden vineyard, it now also has a large vineyard in nearby Aylesford, but it also sources fruit from trusted growers on the South Downs of Sussex, the chalk downlands of Hampshire and other areas in Essex and Kent.

The 9 hectares at Tenterden are on clay loam over sand on south-facing slopes. Here, the team plants pinot noir (used for the red and rosé as well as sparkling wines), pinot blanc, chardonnay and bacchus, a relatively new grape variety perfectly suited to English viticulture, some of which has been planted here since 1987.

At Aylesford, the Kit’s Coty vineyard is planted exclusively with the chardonnay and pinot noir used for Chapel Down’s sparkling wine, thanks to its ideal, gentle, south-facing slopes of chalky, well-draining soil. So far 30 of the 45 hectares are planted, leaving room for inevitable expansion.

Among the various varieties sourced elsewhere is rondo, another popular grape used in English red wine production.

 

All grapes are harvested by hand before being transferred to the winery, where they undergo a gentle pressing before being fermented at low temperatures in stainless-steel tanks, with the exception of a small percentage of the chardonnay which ferments in barrels. The sparkling wine can spend up to five years ageing on its lees for added depth and texture. The team also produces a range of three popular beers called Curious Brew.


Chapel Down Tenterden Chardonnay 2013 @ £13.95 - Buy it here!

An elegant unoaked Chardonnay with aromas of apple, white peach and kiwi fruit with background aromas of fresh hay. The palate is fresh and linear with pineapple and citrus characters leading to a mineral finish.

 

Good bit of this hanging about! Come and give it a go!

Another day, another bottle. This Gavi di Gavi is a great way to start your week as many of our customers will happily tell you. Let's find out a little bit more...

Donato Lanati, one of Italy's best young consultants, began working with La Giustiniana at the beginning of 1998. His indelible stamp of quality has become increasingly evident in recent years. The changes wrought in the winery by Lanati are now being matched with the improvements being made in the vineyard, where better grapes are giving purer, richer and better balanced wines. The entire estate covers 110 hectares in the heart of the commune of Rovereto in Gavi, of which 40 are under vine. Two single vineyard wines are produced, both of which are unoaked so the character of each vineyard shines through.

La Giustiniana Gavi di Gavi 'Lugarara' 2016 @ £14.95 - Buy it here!

A straw yellow wine with hints of green. Lightly perfumed with fresh green apples and pears on the nose. The palate is riper with ripe, golden apples, fresh almonds and honey but still has the characteristic lively twist on the finish found in good Gavi.

We've had this crowd-pleaser for a long time and think it's here to stay for the moment! Cheers!

Another mention for the Seifried Estates Nelson Pinot Noir. 15% when you buy two or more at the moment! Definitely work a look. Wanna know a bit more before you buy? Have a little read...

From small beginnings in 1973, when Hermann Seifried and his New Zealand wife Agnes first planted grapes in the Moutere Valley near Nelson, this is a family business with a focus and passion for beautifully crafted wines.

2016 marks 40 years since the family's first grape harvest, and with all three Seifried children now fully involved in the business, over 250 hectares of sustainably accredited Estate owned vineyards, and exports to over 20 countries around the globe, there is indeed reason to celebrate. Seifried is a family business sharing their wines with the world and is home to the fabulous 'Sweet Agnes' Riesling - NZ's most awarded dessert wine.


"Fruity, fresh, varietal and very inviting bouquet of fresh dark cherry and light red fruits, some plum; baking spices of cinnamon and vanilla. Dry, fruity and flavourful with light red fruits of plum and cherry,light toast oak layer, medium+ acidity and fine tannins. Balanced and well made." 90 Points - Cameron Douglas MS, November 2015

So whenever you get at least two bottles of this stunning pinot noir we'll give you 15% off. That's something anyone can enjoy! Cheers!

A great one from the Rhone today! Southern too. This is one which we just had to get again and we're about to explain why...

 

Laurent and Julien Bréchet have long admired the potential of Lirac, in the Southern Rhône; when the owner of the Moulin des Chênes vineyard retired, they jumped at the chance to take over the vinegrowing there. Lirac lies to the west, across the river from Châteauneuf-du-Pape. It is a Rhône Cru, with a heritage of vinegrowing that is just as long, although with mixed fortunes compared to its easterly neighbour. Quality has been varied, but with the arrival of a younger generation of growers and more modern technology, the potential of Lirac has been realised. The Bréchet brothers have 16 hectares of vines in total there.

Conditions for Lirac are similar to Châteauneuf-du-Pape: both are Mediterranean in climate with over 2500 hours of sunlight per year and a dry growing season that ensures consistently ripe, flavoursome wines.

Both have predominantly stony soils (Lirac also has the large pebbles or 'Galets Roulés' of its neighbour) supported by red clay underneath. The Mistral wind keeps the crop healthy and concentrates flavours in the berries.

Moulin des Chenes Lirac 2015 @ £13.95 - Buy it here!

Deep crimson in colour, with notes of strawberries and blackberries. On the palate, the wine has a velvety mouthfeel and fresh acidity. Redcurrant flavours continue through the mouthwatering finish.

This beauty will remain for a while but that doesn't mean you can wait! It moves incredibly fast. Cheers!