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Jacquart, Brut Mosaique

Champagne
Jacquart, Brut Mosaique
Champagne, France

Jacquart’s Brut Mosaique comes from the famous area of Champagne, just 2 hours north east of Paris. Here, the art of making sparkling wine has been perfected over centuries.

It requires a very particular skill in winemaking to create fine sparkling wine. Unlike with most still wines, the grapes are picked early to retain acidity. This helps keep sparkling wines crisp and refreshing when opened years later. The art of initiating the second fermentation in the bottle, and then riddling the bottles to rid them of sediment, are highly skilled work.

But when the bottle is finally opened, and the stream of small fine bubbles rises to the surface, the vintner’s art becomes apparent. The nose shows classic notes of green apple and a light toasty character. Clean, pure and focused, Champagne has an unmatched elegance on the nose.

The palate is dry, perfectly light bodied, and the acidity braces the sides of your mouth, yearning to be held for a few moments so you can enjoy the dimensions of flavor.

Champagne – the finest sparkling wine in the world.

Food and wine pairing: The perfect aperitif, and ideal with seafood.

Billecart-Salmon, Brut Rose

Champagne
Billecart-Salmon, Brut Rose
France

Rose is the signature wine of Billecart-Salmon, a House that is considered to be the benchmark for this style of Champagne.

Pink Champagne is the most difficult sparkling wine to make. The color must be perfect and there shouldn’t be a trace of tannin. This requires a high level of skill as a winemaker, given that the wine will not be opened for at least 3 years.

Billecart-Salmon is considered to be one of the most stylish boutique Champagne houses. Since being founded in 1818 it has remained one of the best kept secrets in wine.

The gorgeous winery and underground cellars are hidden in a small village surrounded by vines. Billecart uses some old techniques such as basket presses, which gently extract the finest juice. Modern technology is used to create extra cold temperatures during fermentation, which extend the process, and add freshness, elegance and delicacy to the wines. There is an extra-long ageing period in the dark underground cellars, which allows the complex flavours to unfold.

Billecart-Salmon is pure luxury. We hope you enjoy it.

Food and wine pairing: The perfect way to start your journey in style, it is also the classic aperitif, and well suited to smoked salmon and other light seafood.

Domaine Zind-Humbrecht, 2011

Gewurztraminer
Domaine Zind-Humbrecht, 2011
Alsace, France

There are a handful of truly iconic wineries in Alsace. Zind-Humbrecht stands tall among them.

The winemaker and owner, Olivier Zind-Humbrecht, is one of the few Masters of Wine in France. He practices bio-dynamic farming techniques. This means the vineyard is farmed in an ultra-organic way and the earth’s cosmic rhythms guide all of the viticultural practices.

There’s no other place in the world that makes better Gewurztraminer than Alsace. The Vosges mountains create a warm and sunny micro climate enabling late harvesting at intense levels of ripeness. Olivier pushes the boundaries even further, picking very late at massive levels of flavor development. This is the Zind-Humbrecht style.

A pale gold color, as is typical from this pink skinned grape. The heavy viscosity coats the sides of the glass. The nose envelopes the senses with a heady array of ripe and sweet tropical fruits, sweet spices, and rose petal aromas. The palate is rich, thick, yet lively with bright acidity, and a perfect touch of fruit sweetness, pushing this into an off-dry style.

We are delighted to offer you this beautiful Gewurztraminer from an iconic producer.

Food and wine pairing: This is especially well suited to spicy dishes, and white meats like chicken.

Masi, Amarone della Valpolicella, 2008

Amarone
Masi, Amarone della Valpolicella, 2008
Veneto, Italy

We were thrilled to find this outstanding Amarone from the famous producer Masi. It won in our blind tasting of dozens of wines.

Amarone is made in a very unusual way. First, the grape varieties that are used are generally unknown and only found in this region in north eastern Italy. Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara are the varieties.

Only the ripest and healthiest bunches are picked for the Amarone style. Instead of crushing them immediately, the berries are taken to a warehouse where they air-dry for 5 months. This process dehydrates the berries, causing them to shrivel, and increasing the ratio of sugar to juice in the berry.

In the Spring the berries are crushed, fermented over a long period, and then aged in barrel and bottle, usually for 3-4 years before release.

Amarone is always deep and dark, almost inky black. The aroma is so intense with raisin and sweet chocolate that it verges towards a Port style. The palate is dense, concentrated, full-bodied, and packed with sweet ripe fruit. The alcohol degree is over 15%, as it must be by law.

Masi is one of the most respected producers, and we are thrilled to bring you this discovery wine.

Food and wine pairing: The perfect match with beef, pasta in a tomato sauce and hard cheeses.

Tommasi, Amarone della Valpolicella Classico, 2009

Amarone
Tommasi, Amarone della Valpolicella Classico, 2009
Veneto, Italy

There are a handful of Amarone producers that command international respect for their truly fine wines. Tommasi is unquestionably on that list.

Established in 1902, the 4th generation now steers the ship. It’s a classic Italian family affair. The flagship wine of the company is this Amarone. It comes from the Classico district, which indicates that these were the first vineyards to be planted in the region, hundreds of years ago.

It is made from indigenous varieties that you don’t find elsewhere, named Corvina, Rondinella, Molinara and Corvinone. The best bunches are picked from the vine and then laid to dry on straw mats for 5 months before pressing. A tiny amount of juice comes out. It is deep, dark and concentrated.

The ferment and maceration are lengthy and can go for weeks. The wine is then aged for 3 years in Slavonian oak casks.

It has an inky dark color. The nose explodes with sweet dried fruit, with a note of raisin and dark chocolate. The palate is very full bodied, with luscious fruit sweetness, round tannins, and an aftertaste that lingers on and on. These wines can age for 30-50 years, but they taste beautiful now too.

Food and wine pairing: Grilled meats pair well. The wine is also perfect with hard cheeses as you finish your meal.

McWilliams, Mount Pleasant, Elisabeth, 2006

DISCOVERY WINE
Semillon
McWilliams, Mount Pleasant, Elisabeth, 2006
Hunter Valley, Australia

McWilliams Mount Pleasant Winery was rated 5 stars by the leading Australian wine critic, James Halliday.

In this small region, just a few hours north of Sydney, one of the world’s very best white wines is produced. It is a well-kept secret. And it’s called aged Hunter Semillon.

What is staggering is the longevity of the wines. A top Semillon, such as this, can age for 20-40 years, and some only hit their peak well into that period.

Semillon is a white grape that you mainly find here and in Bordeaux, for fine wine. It is picked early, fermented in stainless steel tanks, and then bottled in the Spring after the vintage. It is unoaked.

But then the magic begins. When the winery finally releases the wine at 4 years of age it starts to show its beauty. Notes of fresh lime, lemon zest and toast envelop the senses. The palate is broad, becoming increasingly full bodied with age. Flavors of nectarine and citrus unravel on a richly textured palate. And the hallmark thread of crisp vibrant acidity refreshes the senses.

This is a complex, elegant, classic white wine. Don’t tell anyone the secret.

Food and Wine Pairing: Perfect with poultry and richer fish dishes.

Gustav Lorentz, Grand Cru Altenberg de Bergheim, 2010

Gewurztraminer
Gustav Lorentz, Grand Cru Altenberg de Bergheim, 2010
Alsace, France

Gewurztraminer reaches its pinnacle of quality in Alsace. And since 1836 Gustav Lorentz has been producing some of the finest examples.

When harvested from a top site, such as this Grand Cru vineyard, and the yields are kept low, you can produce one of the world’s most heady and exotic wines. The perfume is so intense, the fruits so tropical and spicy, and the palate so dense and layered. The trademark aromatics of Gewurz are amongst the most beautiful in wine.

What is especially interesting is that the wines drink perfectly when just a few years old, but the best can age for a decade of more. The density of the stone fruit, pineapple, and lychee flavors are counterbalanced by a subtle yet bright acidity, creating the perfect balance.

We invite you to discover this fine white wine from Alsace, one of the world’s underrated treasures.

Food and wine pairing: Ideally suited to spicy Asian dishes, and other powerfully flavored food.

Cuvelier, Los Andes 2009

Malbec
Cuvelier, Los Andes 2009
Mendoza, Argentina

Cuvelier is one of the most prominent families in Bordeaux, owning several chateaux, including 2nd growth Ch. Leoville Poyferre, a fabulous estate in St Julien. The company was started as a merchant house in 1804, shipping wines to the wealthy towns of northern France.

As early as 1914 Paul Cuvelier traveled to Mendoza, in the foothills of the Andes. He discovered a thriving wine region, and upon his return informed his family to consider expansion plans to this remote, and unknown, part of the New World.

Many decades later, with the assistance of the world’s most prominent flying winemaker, Michel Rolland, the Cuvelier’s Argentine wine was unveiled to international acclaim. The wine consistently scores in the 90+ point range.

Malbec has proven to be well suited to the warm, sunny and arid vineyards that are flanked by the majestic Andes to the west. Many of the finest sites are at altitudes in excess of 3,000 feet, where the nights are cooler, and the acidity crisper.

Ripe, round, dense and plush, showing smooth textures, the power of the wine saturates the senses. The fresh blueberries mingled with espresso and vanilla entices the nose. The palate has a beautiful level of dryness, and a subtle backbone of tannin enabling it to age further. This is one of the finest Malbecs from Argentina.

Food and wine pairing: Grilled meats, such as beef or lamb, are the perfect match, and the wine drinks well by itself too.

Luigi Bosca, Lujan de Cuyo, Reserva, 2010

Malbec
Luigi Bosca, Lujan de Cuyo, Reserva, 2010
Mendoza, Argentina

Argentina has a long winemaking history, dating back hundreds of years ago. The early European settlers brought vine cuttings with them and planted vineyards. Today, drinking red wine with meals is very much a part of daily Argentine culture.

Luigi Bosca was established in 1901. The company has been a pioneer in Argentina, spearheading the country’s focus on exports, changing the style of wines to suit modern tastes, and creating denominations of origin in the Mendoza region. This wine comes from a single vineyard in the ultra-prestige Lujan de Cuyo district.

The average age of the vines in this Malbec is 50 years old. With age the vine roots delve deep into the subsoil, in search of nutrients and water. The character of the soil and the climate manifests itself in the berries, resulting in a classic Argentine style.

Always deep in color, with a shade of blue and purple at the rim, the appearance looks rich and powerful. The nose shows abundant ripeness, with black cherries, blackcurrant and milk chocolate. The palate is full, concentrated, and shows vanilla and toasty notes married with black fruits.

Food and wine pairing: Steak or lamb pair beautifully.

Chateau de Fesles, AC Bonnezeaux, 2010

Sweet Chenin Blanc
Chateau de Fesles, AC Bonnezeaux, 2010
Loire valley, France

Chateau de Fesles is considered to be the leading estate in the tiny Loire valley appellation of Bonnezeaux. The property can trace its history back to 1070, owned by a succession of families who fell in love with the great sweet wines of the Loire.

Whilst not as famous as Sauternes or Hungary’s Tokaji, the tiny appellation of Bonnezeaux produces wines that are on a par with the world’s best. Chenin Blanc thrives in this region south west of Paris.

The moderately warm summers can lead into long sunny autumns. The rivers that run nearby create a humid environment that results in foggy mornings, the ideal conditions for botrytis. The berries slowly shrivel, increasing the ratio of sugar to juice, and developing succulent honeyed flavours.

Picked by hand, sometimes berry by berry, the miniscule yield equates to approximately one glass of wine from each vine. Making great sweet wine is a labour of love.

Brilliant golden shades and rich viscosity frame the appearance. Honeycomb, brown sugar, pineapple and light fresh tropical fruits draw the nose in. The sheer depth commands attention. The sweetness washes over the palate, saturating the senses, and yet the acidity dances across the palate, keeping a certain lightness, elegance, and delicacy to the wine.

This is one of the world’s great sweet wines. We hope you enjoy it.

Food and Wine pairing: ideally with light pastry desserts, cheesecake, fresh fruit plates, and soft cheeses.