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Monthly Archives: May 2015

  • Our Italian producers take to the road

    This week we're setting off with a set of our most iconic and inspiring Italian producers on our Italian Heartland Tasting in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Cambridge.

    For Enotria, this is where it all began: we were founded more than 40 years ago as a specialist Italian wine importer with just a few friendly suppliers. That heritage shines through in the continuing excellence and breadth of our Italian offer, from the historic pedigree of Piemonte and the Veneto, down through Tuscany and central Italy to the excitement of southern Italy. The classics of Chianti and Barolo are here, for sure, but they’re joined by distinctive wines from Sardinia and Sicily, Calabria and the Marche.

    This event showcases a hand-picked selection from our Italian portfolio ranging from our longest-standing to producer, through to some of our most iconic names and innovative winemakers. Let us take you on a tour of Italy, experiencing a snapshot of the Italian way of life through its amazingly diverse and exciting regions, sampling wine and local cheese – brought over especially by each of our producers – as you go.

    Producers attending: Mandrarossa, Cleto Chiarli, Colterenzio, Santadi, Umani Ronchi, Cecchi, Fattoria dei Barbi, Vistorta, Varvaglione Vigne e Vini

    Tuesday 26th May - The Forum Bar & Club, 3 Skene Terrace, Aberdeen, AB10 1RN

    Wednesday 27th May - Le di-Vin, 9 Randolph Place, Edinburgh

    Thursday 28th May - The Varsity Hotel, Thompson’s Lane (Off Bridge Street), Cambridge CB5 8AQ

  • Seasonal Sessions: Perfect Picnic Partners

    Mini smoked haddock Scotch eggs with asparagus dippers & watercress mayonnaise

    The wine pairing

    Asparagus is one of those notoriously difficult ingredients to match, however a couple of key pointers will help keep your picnic wine tasting fresh as you tuck into this seasonal treat.

    The key is to avoid wines with too much oak or creaminess, as the asparagus will make the wine taste almost sweet and flatten the flavours.  The best option, as you might expect, is a sauvignon blanc – the more herbal the better.

    Our best picnic partners for this recipe would be the 2014 Sancerre Domaine Franck Millet or the 2014 Sauvignon de Touraine from Domaine de Pierre.  Alternatively, stepping into the New World, you could try Martin Meinert's La Barry; delicate floral fruit with underlying grassy, flinty tones make a brilliant match!

    The recipe


    16 asparagus spears, trimmed

    For the scotch eggs

    400g potatoes, cut into chunks

    400g skinned smoked haddock, cut into large chunks

    16 quail eggs

    25g butter

    2 tbsp milk

    50g plain flour

    2 eggs, beaten

    100g breadcrumbs

    For the watercress mayonnaise

    100g bag watercress

    1 tbsp lemon juice

    150ml mayonnaise


    For the Scotch eggs, tip the potatoes into a large pan and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then tip in the haddock and then the quail’s eggs. Cook the eggs for exactly 2 mins, then remove them and cool under cold running water. Continue cooking the haddock until it flakes, and the potatoes until soft. Drain the fish and potatoes well, then mash with the butter and milk until you have a thick mash. Set aside to cool.

    Meanwhile, peel the eggs. When everything is cool, pat out spoonfuls of mash mix and mould them around the eggs so that they are completely encased. Roll the covered eggs in the flour, then the beaten egg and finally the breadcrumbs. Chill for 1 hr to firm up, or overnight if you’re assembling ahead.

    For the watercress mayonnaise, blitz the watercress with the lemon juice until finely chopped, then stir through the mayonnaise. Blanch the asparagus for 4 mins, then drain under cold water. This can all be done a day in advance.

    To serve, heat a good layer of sunflower oil in a frying pan. Fry the eggs until crisp on all sides, then drain on kitchen paper. Serve with the asparagus and watercress mayonnaise for dipping everything into.


  • Enotria scoops The Fine Wine Merchant of the Year at Sommelier Wine Awards

    In addition to the swathe of fantastic results from our producers, Enotria has been awarded FINE WINE MERCHANT OF THE YEAR at the Sommelier Wine Awards.

    This is what the judges had to say about us:

    "Enotria has really upped its game in SWA over the last two years – from eight golds in 2013 to 24 this year is testament to some serious thought going into their entry. If they carry on at this rate, they could stake a real claim for a top-three finish next year. There was no shortage of good kit in this year’s medal-winners, but what stood out for our judges was the range of top-end Golds. In categories where our tasters often rarely give out more than one or two places on the Gold List, it was significant how many times Enotria came out of the pack to take top slot. From classics like Premier Cru Chablis and northern Rhone reds to ‘hot’ categories like the Douro, Ribera del Duero and Mornington Pinot, they delivered repeatedly, with plenty of good stuff from Italy, South Africa and Spain in the Silvers, too."

    We're absolutely thrilled to receive this level of recognition from the SWA and we're taking the words from the judges to heart - our determination to better our portfolio only continues to grow.  Our portfolio strategy aims to ensure we can provide the complete package - top quality wines that are diverse, on-trend and inspiring.

  • See you at the Fair!

    If you happen to be popping by the London Wine Fair this year, be sure to pay us a visit at  Stand Y40 for a preview of our exciting multi-channel offering.

    Our stand’s primary focus will be the off trade, showcasing wines from a wide range of producers including Yealands from Marlborough, Washington and Napa’s Ste Michelle Wine Estates, Marqués de Riscal from Rioja and McLaren Vale’s d’Arenberg.

    Indies beware...

    We are coming for you.  We'll be launching a range of wines developed exclusively for the independent channel, featuring some great wines from inspiring and unique producer partners from across the globe.



    VIP Table

    If that wasn't enough, we'll also be showcasing our Buyer’s Selection from Enotria’s stellar producers, including F. E Trimbach, Ken Forrester, Henschke, Château Sainte Marguerite and Glaetzer, which will be available in an Enomatic preservation system.  This is an exceptional line-up of wines which our Buying team have selected specifically as exclusive, unusual and not to be missed.

    Feeling peckish?

    Then aim to stop by in the afternoon on Monday and Tuesday as from 3.00pm onwards we'll be trying out some intriguing food matches on-stand; come along and discover something deliciously out of the ordinary!

    See you there...

  • Etna Rocks

    It's great news for Planeta in the latest Imbibe Panel Tasting "Etna Rocks".

    The Panel, made up of Imbibe's own Clinton Cawood as well as consultants and sommeliers from several reputed restaurants, blind tasted over 20 wines from a variety of distributors, taking only the value into account on their scores. See how Planeta fared below!

    Brut Metodo Classico NV

    Score: 75

    "Some gooseberry character on the nose - a soft fruity wine that's very easy to drink." Derryn Neal, Merchant's Tavern

    "Biscuity and citrusy nose, with a good citrus bite. Refreshing." Martin Lamb, Consultant

    "A great combination with fish dishes, and really good value." Archie Manza, Rocket Restaurant

    "Ripe apple fruit combined with elegant minerality. A well-balanced wine, with a salty finish." Gergely Barsi Szabó

    Planeta Etna Bianco 2013

    Score: 72

    "Fruity on the nose, with a bit of a saline aroma too.  The palate's lighter, with a salty finish, and ripe fruit." Gergely Barsi Szabó

    "There's a nectarine and apple core note to this, in spite of it being somewhat restrained on the nose.  There's similar ripe fruit on the palate, right through to the finish.  Perfect on its own." Clinton Cawood, Imbibe

    Planeta Etna Rosso 2013

    Score: 79

    "Light in colour - almost transparent, with a peppery nose, and barely ripe cherry notes.  Very drinkable, yet keeping in that lightness, with balanced minerality." Derryn Neal, Merchant's Tavern

    "A savoury, herbal palate, with darker fruit.  Some complexity here - clean and well made." Martin Lamb, Consultant

    Planeta Eruzione 1614 Bianco 2013

    Score: 83

    "Floral, Moscato-like nose, with more of the same on the palate, along with a saline, mineral edginess." Martin Lamb, Consultant

    "A fruity wine, with peach and plum flavours. Good price for the quality." Archie Manza, Rocket Restaurant

    Planeta Eruzione 1614 Rosso 2012

    Score: 79

    "Cocoa powder closely followed by some spicy steak notes on the nose - clearly a savoury wine! The palate's lovely and lifted, full of dark cherries and good acidity, not to mention some appealing tannins." Clinton Cawood, Imbibe

    "Nice red fruit and aromatic spiciness on the nose.  Juicy plump fruit on the palate, with good extraction and structure.  Quite a serious wine." Martin Lamb, Consultant

    A little bit of background...

    When Planeta first acquired the vineyards on Mount Etna, to be in keeping with the active volcano, they needed to set off with a bang.  There was no better way to do this that to make their first venture into sparkling wine in their typically unique way, with Carricante.

    The altitude on their Etna site gives the vineyards a cooler climate which extends the ripening period, increasing the layers of flavour in the grapes, while the volcanic soils add a fresh minerality to the wines.

    Their winery, Feudo di Mezzo, has been built with rigorous attention to local materials and conserving energy.  The barrel store, in particular is not only a reproduction of one of the ancient stone houses of Etna, but also has perfect natural insulation for the storage of the wine.

    Click here for more detail on Planeta's exploits on Etna.

  • It's not just about being green (but it does help)

    Owner of New Zealand's first carbon zero winery, Yealands Estates, received rave reviews in the papers this weekend for their Peter Yealands Sauvignon Blanc and Crossroads Milestone Sauvignon Blanc.  Proof that with green credentials come great wines.

    After the buzz around Sauvignon Blanc Day, we’re more than a little bit glad to see sauvignon blanc's popularity continuing to boom.  Long may it last!

     Peter Yealands Sauvignon Blanc 2014

     “A bright and very inviting sauvignon blanc.  The grapes come from two Marlborough sub-zones.  Those from the Awatere Valley contribute verdancy; flavours of crunchy green capiscums, freshly-podded peas and green tomatoes.  Those from the warmer Wairau offer more star fruit, passion fruit and a tinge of blackcurrant leaf.  Bold and refreshing.”

    The Daily Telegraph - Victoria Moore

     Crossroads Milestone Sauvignon Blanc 2013

    “From the same Kiwi stable as the Cabernet Franc recommended two weeks ago, this is siomilarly well made; drisply citric notes, but more rounded and fuller-flavoured than some. Try with scallops or prawns.”

    The Independent on Sunday - Terry Kirby

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