Every so often, you have to spoil yourself unreservedly, indulgently and without guilt. Well, in wine terms, this is the case that will do it. It has classics from the likes of Bordeaux, Champagne Rhône and Burgundy, as well as brilliant gems from Italy, New Zealand and South Africa. All in all, a world tour of awesome wines from start to finish. As they say in the hair adverts, treat yourself... because you're worth it!!
What's in this case:
Kados Grillo 2016, Sicily, Italy
If you like Montrachet, you will L.O.V.E. this baby. Pure melon, citrus, and grapefruit, with a lovely rich creamy oak edge to it, this is actually from Sicily - from vineyards just near Mount Etna. The intensity and complexity it shows are thanks to the incredibly rich, ash-laden soils the property's vines sit in. And the best bit, great Montrachet will cost you double the price. So this is a win on both fronts.
Chablis Collette Gros 2018, Chablis, Burgundy, France
I have only one Chablis on my list at the moment. And that's for one simple reason - this is a fabulous example from one of Burgundy's finest producers, the wonderful Colette Gros, and perfectly epitomises what top class Chablis should be. So why have any others. This is delightfully minerally, but also has bright, shiny crisp lemon fruit flavours with a touch of crunchy apple and a twist of pear on the finish. Creamy and frighteningly easy to drink. I mean really really frightening. Fabulous with baked aubergine drizzled with miso.
Champagne Deville Cuvée Carte Noire NV, Champagne, France
Awesome Champagne from a little known house, Paul Deville. Absolutely charming, with a delightfully creamy, biscuity nose, and crunchy apple and lemon fruit flavoures in the mouth. Soft, but presistent bubbles help explode those flavours and super size them, before finishing with a creamy, tart kick. Divinity in a glass. A cross between Bollinger and Laurent-Perrier, but for a fraction of the price. Our house Champagne and damn proud of it. Plus it is totally organic. You simply can't stop winning with this wine.
Franciacorta 1701 Brut Nature, NV, Lombardy, Italy
Ok, so for those that don't know about Franciacorta, it is one of Italy's best-kept secrets. If Prosecco is an inexpensive alternative to Champagne, Franciacorta is the real deal. Which is why it is so reassuringly expensive. However, in our humble opinion, it beats the pants off most "average" Champagnes and has loads more character to boot. This version is from one of the top producers, 1701, and is a creamy, brioche laden blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. It has a lovely racy, zippy lemon fruit, with a touch of crunchy apples, a light persistent mousse, and a deliciously creamy close. All in all, delightful and classy.
Te Whare Ra Pinot Gris 2019, Marlborough, New Zealand
Mango, citrus, red apple & lychee with a lingering spiciness on the nose. This is one of New Zealand's stand out producers and their Pinot Gris is sublime. Excellent fruit concentration; weight on the palate with a lovely creamy texture, mineral edge; great length. Perfect with Asian cuisine.
Guerrieri Rizzardi Ferra Soave 2016, Veneto, Italy
Anyone who has tasted a bottle of Pieropan La Rocca Soave will realise that the thin weedy wines of the 1970s that made their way over from the Veneto have nothing to do with real Soave. Less well known and lauded than Pieropan, but equally superb is the Ferra Soave from Guerreri Rizzardi. Made in the vineyard next door to Pieropan, it has a similar minerality, alongside deliciously crunchy fresh apple and pear fruit flavours that jump out at you. It finishes long and creamy and is perhaps one of the best whites we have on the list. If you love top class whites with character, body and complexity you have to give this a go - and it's a good £10 less than the Pieropan Soave. Fabulous with any kind of seafood, but particularly good with lemon sole cooked in a buerre blanc. Marvellous combo.
Chocolate Block 2018, Boekenhoutskloof, Franschoek, South Africa
There aren't many more sought after wines from South Africa than The Chocolate Block from Boekenhoutskloof. The nose is dark fruit with an abundance of savoury cured meat, black olives and cigar box. The palate shows red and dark berry fruit with flavours of ripe, red plums, blueberries and black cherries. Vibrant acidity and a smooth fleshy texture. The wine is full-bodied with a rich, smooth mouthfeel. The finish is long with hints of cherry, pimento olives and sweet tobacco. Honestly. This wine is a total legend and each year we get our allocation in and it flies out of the door. It really is that popular.
Jean-Jacques Girard Savigny Les Beaunes "Les Fourneaux" 2015, Burgundy, France
When you're spending this kind of money on a bottle of wine, you basically want to make sure you are getting every single penny of value out of it. You expect it to be superb. To taste like liquid gold. Well, Domaine Girard have done exactly that with their silky smooth evocation of Pinot Noir. This shows the great heights that Burgundy can produce. It has dark intense brooding black cherry fruits, laced with silky smooth tannins, soft, subtle oak and a velety complex, smoky finish. A touch of licorice and an earthiness linger on the finish, giving added joy. This really is a superb wine. If you're going to spoil yourself you may as well do it with this little beauty.
Guerrieri Rizzardi Pojega Ripasso Valpollicella 2016, Veneto, Italy
Guerrieri is perhaps one of the most respected and established wineries in the Veneto, producing amazingly rich, concentrated and intense wines. This Pojega, a Ripasso (meaning it has been fermented twice using dried grapes in the secondary fermentation to give extra richness and intensity) has a beautifully defined dark cherry fruit aligned with subtle spice. Full flavoured but never heavy, its a wonderfully classic style of serious red from this region. Perfect with grilled lamb cutlets, fillet/sirloin of beef, stews and casseroles and hard, aged cheeses.
Domaine Perrin Bourgogne Noir 2017, Celigne Perrin, Burgundy, France
Organic for over a decade and with five generations of wine making experience, the Perrin family’s Bourgogne Rouge is pure strawberry, cherry, and blueberry. It's rare to find such intensity and complexity in a plain Bourgogne but then this is why the Perrins are so highly thought of for their wines. Even their simplest wine is on a par with others more elevated evocations. Best paired with pink roast lamb or mushroom and truffle ravioli.
Saint Michel Chateauneuf du Pape 2015, Clos Saint Michel, Olivier et Franck Mousset, Rhône, France
You know you're in the presence of greatness when you pop the cork on this delicious, ripe, rich, round Rhône. Truly this is a fabulous example of why the Rhône is capable of providing more serious bang for buck than wines from Burgundy and Bordeaux that often cost twice as much. This has incredibly pure dark plum, mulberry and damson fruit flavours that open up to a delightful blend of licorice, cedarwood, spice and woodsmoke on its incredibly long and complex finish.
Château Fleur Morange Mathilde 2011, Grand Cru, St Emilion, France
The 2011 Mathilde is Château Fleur Morange's second wine, but they only produce around 1200-1300 cases a year – tiny in Bordeaux production terms (Lafite produces 18,000 cases of its first wine, and a similar amount of its second wine). Supple, silky smooth, with a classic rich ripe notes of cassis and black cherry, it has fantastic length, complexity and a delightful smoky, cedarwood finish. Absolutely fantastic with rib of beef!
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