In the news: June
Spice, smoke and a splash of Aussie power. Prepare to be... Dazzled by Shiraz // Daily Mail
Aussie Shiraz was one of the first reds I fell in love with when I started working in wine. I adored its boldness, hearty flavour and easily identifiable trademark aromas of smoke and spice. Australian Shiraz is their mostly widely planted red, taking up an impressive 30 per cent of the entire local vineyard area.
Exports of bottled Shiraz from Australia to the UK increased by eight per cent to A$44 million (£25 million) for the year ending March 2018, so it’s high time we took this red powerhouse a bit more seriously.
OLLY SMITH: Fit for a Queen – and perfect for toasting her birthday – it's... Britain's own majestic wine // Daily Mail
“Camel Valley is one of my favourite English sparkling wines. I also hear that acting royalty Dame Judi Dench is a fan and I have a six-litre methuselah bottle of its Pinot Noir Rosé 2010 ready to pop for the Queen’s birthday. But what other local wines are worth celebrating? Ancre Hill Estates in Monmouthshire, Lyme Bay in Devon, Furleigh and Langham Estates in Dorset, Hambledon in Hampshire, Gusbourne in Kent… But Sussex remains a real hotspot, with Ridgeview, Nyetimber, Wiston, Hoffmann & Rathbone, Sugrue Pierre, Bluebell Vineyards and Breaky Bottom all making superb sparklers.
10 best Sauvignon Blancs to enjoy this summer // Wine Enthusiast
The list included wines from California to Chile, with Leyda Single Vineyard Garuma Sauvignon Blanc 2017 standing out from the Leyda Valley. Michael Schachner, the magazine editor for Argentina, Chile and Spain described it as follows: “This Sauvignon Blanc from coastal Leyda boasts crisp, pure citrus and oceanic aromas. It’s tight and firm on the palate, with citrus, sea salt and green herb flavors that finish smooth and round despite bold acidity."
Howard Park: 2018 Best Vintage in Western Australia for 25 Years // The Drinks Business
Jeff Burch, owner of Howard Park which produces wines from both the Margaret River and Great Southern regions, believes the 2018 vintage will be one that “winemakers will talk about and will be one for consumers to look out for in the coming years”. Read the article.
An Under-the-Radar Italian Wine Made for Summer Drinking // Wall Street Journal
Verdiccihio got a bad name in the 1980s and ‘80s thanks to inferior imports. Today, quality is higher than ever and this food-friendly white wine can be a tremendous value if you know what to look for.
Read the article Umani Ronchi Casal di Serra Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi.
Global Rose Masters 2018: The Results // The Drinks Business
As much as its producers might try to convince us to more readily drink rosé outside of the summer months, there’s no denying how a ray of sunshine can make a glass of pink that much more appealing.
Read the results, featuring Lyme Bay, Hattingley Valley and Château Gassier.
Great value wines for the weekend under £20
Fresh and dry Albariño wines, perfect for warm weather drinking...
Mar de Frades, Albariño 2015 (95 Points): Winemaker Paula Fandiño is a native Galician who has always worked in the region, and with white wines. She joined Mar de Frades (owned by Rioja’s Ramón Bilbao) in 2007 and works with 150 growers in the Val do Salnés area. With its distinctive blue bottle, the popular packaging has become better known than the liquid inside. However since 2009 Fandiño has been researching batonnage, barrel ageing and single vineyards, all of this informing the mainstream wine. PBT: "Fine aromas of citrus and grass, very delicate. Fresh and so typical, this is textbook Albariño." SJE: "Elegant, pure and salty. Aromatic and fine, with generous, juicy white fruit, lovely balance and approachability." PM: "Appealingly floral, honeyed nose, white peaches. Full, very fresh, fine, salty, stony appeal. Textured finish with grapefruit lift."
My top 20: NZ Pinot Noir // Decanter, July 2018
Anne Krebiehl MW selects 20 of her current favourites that combine the ethereal appeal of the great Burgundy grape with New Zealand’s island individuality.
Yealands Estate, Winemaker’s Reserve, Awatere Valley, Marlborough 2016: Savoury, peppery notes of cranberry pervade nose and palate, fragrant and laden with cherry. Combines Awatere’s coolness and Marlborough’s brilliant sunshine.
Weekday Wines // Decanter, July 2018
Looking to try something different or adventurous, but don’t want to make an expensive mistake? Christelle Guibert and Tina Gellie have done the hard work for you, picking out 25 exciting and accessible wines available in the UK for £25 or less.
Trapiche, Costa & Pampa Chardonnay, Chapadmalal, Buenos Aires, Argentina 2016: Costa & Pampa is a project in Mar del Plata, a new wine region of Argentina, which gets lots of rain. This pretty Chardonnay is driven by green apples and citrus, supported by subtle oak. A pure style that’s astonishingly affordable.
Ramón Bilbao Edición Limitada, Lias Verdejo, Rueda, Spain 2016: A new addition to the Ramón Bilbao range and one of very few Verdejos of its kind in Rueda. Aged for eight months on its lees, adding toasty notes and a creamy texture to the variety’s classic lemon flavours. Would make a good partner to richer food.
Australian Shiraz Panel Tasting // Decanter, July 2018
d’Arenberg, The Dead Arm, McLaren Vale, South Australia 2014: Juicy, meaty, dark fruits, bramble and cherry combine with fresh violets and damsons, supported by a sinewy tannins and firm but balanced acidity.