World Wine Tour

We are really excited to announce the launch of our new World Wine Tour. Through the next few months we will taking an adventure to learn the History, Facts and Food Matching capabilities of the most famous wine regions and grapes.

To celebrate we will also be giving away two bottles of fantastic award winning Champagne, to enter, simply take our Wine Quiz and test your knowledge!

We are starting our adventure with Bordeaux

Top Offers on Prosecco
Save up to 1/3 off October Fizz offers at Waitrose Cellar. Buy a bottle of lovely Italia Collezione Prosecco for just 7.99! Enjoy Prosecco from just £7.00 at Tesco Wine by the Case. Don't hesitate to check out their whole range of Italian bubbles, many at really low prices. Save up to £7 off Fizz this week at Majestic Wine. You can buy Rivamonte Prosecco DOC NV from just £6.99 a bottle! Check out which bottles of fizz are currently on offer at M&S. Delicious Conte Priuli Prosecco is now 25%…
Champagne Offers of the Week
Buy Louis Chaurey & Louis Vertay Champagnes half-price, only £17.00 a bottle this month at Marks & Spencer. Plus, you can save up to £30 on Oudinot Champagne range. You must check it out! Save up to 1/3 off Fizz this month at Waitrose Cellar. Among discounted brands you will find Lanson, Laurent-Perrier, Bollinger, Pol Roger, Bredon and Waitrose own range. This week save 25% on Bollinger Special Cuvee at Majestic Wine, costing you only £32.99 per bottle. Other Champagne prices at Majestic start…
This Week's Best Wine Offers
Nothing compares to relaxing qualities of a glass of wine, no matter if enjoyed in quiet solitude or with a bunch of friends. Deep ruby reds, thirst-quenching whites and lovely pinks are waiting for you at delightful prices - we are here to help you find them. Why not be savvy with Wines Direct and buy for less? Have a look at our selection of best deals for information & inspiration. Make sure you always have a perfect bottle to serve! Save 25% off Rich Autumnal Reds this month at Waitrose…
Champagne Offers
Get in the mood for a party with the greatest celebration drink ever created! In other words, let us introduce you to the hottest Champagne deals of the week. We even made a list for you - have a look and be inspired for the best buy! Cheap Champagne | Compare Champagne Offers | Champagne Deals of the Day *This article is showing the prices and stock available on 18/10/2017. There is never a bad time to pick up a great deal on a bottle of Champagne, but the run up to Christmas is…
You don't need to overpay to enjoy the grandest fizz in the world! Wines Direct works with top wine merchants and supermarkets to find the best cheap Champagne currently on sale in the UK. Have a look at the most spectacular Champagne discounts available this week in the UK. *This article is showing the prices and stock available on 18/10/2017. Cheap champagne is rarely that cheap: to have 'Champagne' printed on the bottle, the grapes need to come from the hugely expensive Champagne region and…
Prosecco
Refreshing, bubbly, unpretentious, low-cost, perfect both for everyday and grand celebrations - at Wines Direct we know the reasons why everybody loves Prosecco so much! Look at our regularly updated Top 5 Prosecco list and learn about the hottest deals on this fantastic drink at various merchants. Bottoms up! Compare Prosecco Offers | All Prosecco Offers *This article is showing the prices and stock available on 18/10/2017. Prosecco is the bestselling wine in the UK and as its share of…
Online Retailer of the Year
We proudly present the first edition of winesdirect.com Online Retailer of the Year Awards. The results are based on the survey we carried out among our customers and subscribers in Spring 2017. We are very happy we can finally share them with you. Congratulations to Majestic Wines – Winesdirect.com Online Retailer of the year 2017 and all our Medal Winners! (Click here to see a larger version of our awards results image) The Retailers you admire for their specific areas of expertise are…
Spring Wines & Food
As the days start to lengthen, and signs of new life are all around us, our taste-buds start to gravitate towards fresher, crispier flavours and aromas. If you crave Spring-veg based dishes and generally lighter cuisine, preferably eaten al fresco, you will definitely need a proper wine companion. Matching food with wine can really make a difference to your overall taste experience. And with our help you don’t need to spend a fortune on perfectly satisfying seasonal wines. We’ve put together…
Whisky Lounge London Whisky Weekender 2017
Obviously, you will have the chance to taste the best of homegrown whiskies from all over Scotland, but they will also have a good selection of whiskies from all over the world. New for 2017 we have ‘The Whisky Creche’ hosted by Matt from the Huffington Post, our Blending Lab and Cocktail Workshop which is perfect for the whisky hater in your life! As if that was not enough, there are over 150 whiskies, gins, rums and liqueurs available to sample on the day. Each ticket includes: Choose any…
Top 10 Valentine Gifts from Marks & Spencer
Valentine’s Day is approaching, and with it – a perfect occasion to tell your One and Only how much you love them. Choose something from our selection of Marks & Spencer gifts, perfect for Boys and Girls who are looking for some sweet inspiration. Plus, you can pick something special from the M&S buy 2 save 25% offer. You don’t have to make a splash to show you care – we’ve got something for every budget! Enjoy FREE Nominated Day Delivery when you spend £50 on Food and Wine gifts. £20.00 A…
Whatever budget you plan to spend on wine, there are always opportunities to save up - sometimes quite a few! Our vouchers and offers are tailored for everyone's needs. How? Just have a look at our guide and find your perfect wine shopping match! Merchant Offer Spend Save Your budget is under £100 Save £25 off your order over £69.99 with our exclusive voucher - For new customers only & not available on Champagne £69.99 £25 off Save £25 off your order over £69.99 with our exclusive voucher - For…
Our Favourites from the 2016 Laithwaite's LIVE Tasting
On 4th and 5th November, Londoners had a chance to take part in Laithwaite’s Wine Live 2016, one of numerous wine related events organised by this merchant every year. Those lucky enough to be at The Lindley Hall in Westminster could revive their taste buds with over 90 Old and New World wines, bubbly and fortified, plus some spirits and food delicacies. Anyone who has been there would probably agree that the abundance of choice and the presence of huge crowds could make one feel dizzy without a…
Waitrose Cellar launch their new Champagne Shop
Champagne is always a great way to celebrate and even better if you can buy it online and get it delivered straight to your door! However, most retailers will ask you to buy 6 or 12 bottles to place your order but when you want Champagne, this can get quite expensive and you might not need this amount. Waitrose Cellar have realised this and launched their brand new Champagne Shop. You can order your favourite Champagnes and sparkling wines without having to buy 6 bottles with FREE delivery! They…
Recipe: Baked Salmon & Risotto with Bordeaux Sauvignon
Wine enthusiast and TV presenter, Phillip Schofield, created this delicious salmon recipe to enjoy with the amazing Roquefortissime Sauvignon from Waitrose Cellar. Plus, discover four other fabulous white wines at the end of this article, to celebrate Easter in style. Chateau Roquefort Roquefortissime Sauvignon | Bordeaux, France, 2014, 12% ABV Now just £13.99 I adore crisp Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire and the really green Sauvignons from New Zealand. Bordeaux Sauvignon is another wonderful…
10 Tips on How to Save Money with Wines Direct
Our mission is to save you money! So we are busy behind the scenes developing new money saving tools to make it even easier for you to find the best bargains. We already have exclusive wine vouchers as well as search engines which help you find the best wine offers available on the website. You can browse products by price, most discounted, award winners, or best rated by our users to find exactly what you are looking for. Moreover, on our product pages, you can register your email address to…
Find the Right Wine Merchant For You
We work with over 20 wine merchants and supermarkets in the UK and bring their stock together so that you can compare their offers and get the best deals. This page lists all the merchants we are working with at the moment with valuable information about who they are, their delivery options and the products they sell. It can sometimes be difficult to choose where to buy your wines or spirits from. Here's some advice to help you. Depending on which factor is most important to you, you will want…
Angela Mount Reviews Majestic's Definition Range
Last September, Majestic finally entered the ‘own brand’ arena, with the launch of a small, but in many cases, perfectly formed selection of their own wines, labeled ‘the Definition Range’. There are currently 12 wines in the range, all priced between £7.99 and £13.99 (when purchased as part of any mixed 6 bottles). Early success of this selection, which exceeded all expectations in terms of sales in the first 5 months, would indicate that the range will expand, with a Pouilly-Fume and a…
A Guide To The Wines Of Bordeaux
Whilst Bordeaux is classified as a single region, in the broadest sense of the appellation, it is an area of great contrasts, both in terms of landscape, microclimates, and especially wine styles. Dominated by the two main rivers, the Gironde and the Garonne, which naturally divide the region, Bordeaux has numerous sub-regions, each of which produces wines of unique character, style and individuality. In very broad terms, the region is divided into Right Bank, Left Bank, and ‘in-between’, the…
Nederburg, 200 years of South African wine
Nederburg is one of oldest and most historic South African wine producers, with over 200 years of history, and a pedigree, that puts it at the front of quality South African winemaking. It began, and is still housed in the stunning Paarl region of South African, below the Drakenstein mountains, where it continues to build on its long heritage in this area. Nederburg is one of the best known South African wine brands, and produces a wide range of wines that span all main styles, and pricing…
Easter Competition - Win £150 to Spend at Waitrose Cellar
What's the best food & wine pairing to celebrate Easter? Choose your favourite amongst our four propositions on Facebook for the chance to win £150 voucher to spend as you wish at Waitrose Cellar. Hurry, competition closes midday Monday 4th April 2016. The rules Please do contact us if you have any question and we'll be happy to help! This competition ran from the 23/03/2016 until the 04/04/2016 11:59.
Angela Mount's Top Wines For Winter Parties
The Big Day is days away; in most households, presents are sorted, the turkey is ordered, along with all the trimmings and the Christmas pudding. However, according to research, wine is left to the last minute, and often results in last minute Christmas Eve dashes to supermarkets and wine merchants. But what to choose? Here are a few ideas to make decision making easier... NB: Angela Mount bases her wine scores on quality of wine linked to value for money. Waitrose consistently deliver across…
Xmas Competition - Win £150 worth of Wine with Waitrose Cellar
What's your favourite drink to celebrate Christmas? Tell us by sharing a link on facebook to any drink from the Waitrose Cellar fabulous range - they have over 1,000 to choose from! This will automatically add you on our special Xmas list for a chance to win £150 worth of the wine/spirits of your choice from waitrosecellar.com! Hurry, our competition ends at midday on Friday 18th December 2015. How to enter the competition? Please do contact us if you have any question and we'll be happy to…
Discovering English Wine With Jim Gore, DipWSET
by Jim Gore, DipWSET As most English winemaking is still a new industry and we basically keep most of it ourselves, we don’t yet cover English wine on WSET courses, but with the strides in quality being made by our contingent of passionate, dynamic winemakers, I am looking forward to watching the world find out more about English wines. There’s never been a more exciting time to be involved in English wine. In the UK our tastes are changing; more and more we are paying close attention to what is…
Competition: Win A Case Of Wine Worth Over £270 With FromVineyardsDirect
To celebrate our brand new partnership, FromVineyardsDirect is offering you a chance to win a case of the delicious Chateau Citran 2005 from Haut-Medoc, Bordeaux, worth £275.40! To enter, just fill in the form below to sign up to their newsletter. The winner will be drawn at random amongst the participants. Hurry, competition ends on Monday 30th November 2015! eRobertParker.com #219 June 2015 This competition ran from the 30/10/2015 until the 30/11/2015 23:59.
Two stars of the 70s making a comeback - WSET
What comes to mind when you hear the word Sherry? What about Asti? Most Brits associate these drinks with a few big brands which had their heyday back in the 1970s. The words ‘sweet’ and perhaps ‘cheap’ may also spring to mind. For the younger generations, our only image or memory of these drinks may be of bleary-eyed parents at Christmas, or the back of your auntie’s dusty drinks cupboard. Since the march of the supermarkets began, British taste buds have been exposed to a whole range of new…
The Four Rules to Masterful Food and Wine Matching - WSET
by Jim Gore DipWSET Have you ever wondered how to find the perfect wine to go with your meal? If you’re tired of feeling worried in the wine aisle and want to get to grips with the mystery of food and wine pairing, then read on. All it takes are four very basic principles: This may sound obvious, but if you’ve been recommended a great pairing, and it’s a style of wine you loathe, then no matter how ideal a match they may be it’s less likely you will enjoy the experience. So if you know that you…
Competition: Review Your Favourite Wine From Waitrose To Win £150 Worth Of Wine
Do you love the Waitrose wine range as much as we do? Let us know! Write a review about your favourite wine from Waitrose Cellar on Wines Direct for a chance to win £150 worth of wine! Don't just say it's nice but show us your poetic talents as only reviews with at least 20 words will be accepted! One winner will be selected at random amongst the entries. Hurry, competition ends on Tuesday 20th October 2015 at midday! Should you be experiencing any issues with writing your review, read our step…
The Quality Drink & Food Awards Announced Their Shortlist
After three intense weeks of judging over 1,400 entries, The Quality Food & Drink Awards just announced their shortlist of products for the 36th judging. The QDA/QFA is all about celebrating UK producers - whether they are huge multi-nationals or small artisans - and showcase the best products sold on our grocery shelves. All products undergo a rigorous judging by a panel of 150 food and drink experts. Among them, Richard Siddle, former editor of Harpers Wine & Spirit, chosen as head judge of…
Discover The Wines From Germany
Germany has one of the most noble and historic wine cultures of all. As well as being home to one of the world’s greatest grape varieties, Riesling, and producing wines which have graced tables across the world for centuries, Germany has also given the wine world some of the leading pioneers in terms of winemakers, and producers, both today and over the last 2 centuries – in Germany, and in the far-flung corners of the New World, especially Australia. A swift bit of research into the origins of…
Celebrating English Wine Week With Waitrose By Angela Mount
This week is English Wine Week, and there’s never been a better time to celebrate the extraordinarily rapid success and growth, of our home-grown wines. English wines have been around for decades – in small quantities, of varying levels of quality, but with very little impact in the market. Fast forward to the present day and the situation is very different. Led by the charge of high-quality English sparkling wines, made with the same grapes and in the same way as Champagne, English wine is now…
New Discoveries From Asda By Angela Mount
However great the wine inside the bottle, there are far too many wines on the supermarket shelves which look mundane, anonymous, and quite frankly, boring. I’ve seen too many people gaze, with glazed eyes at the multitude of wines on display, looking for clues and not getting many, from the wall of bland, ‘samey’ labels that stare back at them. It’s almost better to have the most ghastly, garish label on your wine, because at least it will stand out from the crowd! I’m not advocating that in the…
Clam & Prawn Spaghetti Recipe For The Weekend From Waitrose
This seafood supper is the perfect pairing for the wine’s vibrant, zesty flavours. Tre Fiori Greco di Tufo | Campania, Italy, 2013, 12.5% ABV Now £10.99 This wine has a really gorgeous fruity, zesty ping to it. The citrus overtone matches the lemon twist in this spaghetti dish so much so that you might use a drop of it in the cooking. This is a wonderful match that’s pleasurable on every level. Recipe Ingredients 1. Rinse the clams in cold running water and scrub if necessary, then put them into…
Fizz and Chips: The perfect recipe for a Fish supper from Waitrose
This luxury take on one of Britain’s favourite fish dishes deserves something extraordinary to wash it down with – and what could be more special than a good bottle of Champagne? Waitrose Blanc de Noirs | Champagne, France, NV, 12% ABV Now £21.99 If you have white wine with fish and chips, why not have Champagne with posh fish and chips? This delicious award winner is made from Pinot Noir grapes – hence the blanc de noirs (white from black) on the label. It’s bubbly and fruity, and perfect…
Angela Mount's Top 10 Wines From Tesco's Spring Tasting
We saw a fine turnout of wines at the recent Tesco Spring Press tasting, where they showcased wines for the coming summer season. The buyers and product selectors remain committed to snapping up the best wines for their FINEST range; I tasted new vintages of previous favourites and also found some new discoveries – here are my top ten: I’ve written numerous times about Tesco’s Finest Prosecco and Finest Pignoletto; here’s a new one. Blanquette de Limoux is a perky, breezy fizz from southern…
Save 10% Off The Waitrose Wines With Awards Mixed Case
Waitrose Cellar have put together a pre-mixed case with 12 delicious award-winning wines. Made from whites and reds, New World and Old World, this mixed case will allow you to try wonderful award winners for just £102.00, £8.50 per bottle! Hurry, you can save 10% off your case if you order before Tuesday 12th May 2015! Just add a case to you basket and the price will go down to an amazing £91.80, that's just £7.65 a bottle!
International Sauvignon Blanc Day will be celebrated on Friday 24th April 2015. This initiative was started by the St Supery Winery in California and spread widely through social media and events all around the world. To celebrate this extremely popular grape, we picked fabulous Sauvignon Blanc wines from the wide range available at Waitrose Cellar. With wines from New Zealand, France or Chile, Sauvignon Blanc lovers will definitely find something they like! Happy #SauvBlanc Day! Save an…
To celebrate International Malbec Day coming this Friday, we have selected delicious Malbec wines from the extensive Waitrose Cellar range. Made just with Malbec grapes, as part of a blend or as a rosé wine, explore the different versions of this wonderful grape whose origin are in Southern France, but is now very well developed in Argentina. Save an additional £20 off your order when you spend £150 or more with our exclusive Waitrose Cellar voucher. Hurry, expires on Thursday 30th April 2015!
Waitrose Cellar have 25% off their superb fine wine collection. To help you choose from their extensive range, we have carefully selected what we think are their top offers. Just add any 6 bottles to your basket and enjoy free standard delivery or collect your order from one of the 300 Waitrose branches in the UK. Save an extra 5% off your order when you add any 12 bottles of wine to your basket! Hurry, these great offers are ending on Tuesday 7th April 2015!
Top 10 Wines From The Waitrose Cellar 25% Off Sale
Please note this sale is now finished. Waitrose Cellar have just launched an amazing sale with an extra 25% off ALL wine & Champagne, on top of their already existing promotions! Shop their fabulous range of over 1,200 wines, Champagnes, fizz and fortified, but hurry, the sale is ending on Tuesday 9th June 2015! You discount will be automatically applied at checkout. To help you choose amongst their wonderful range, we've selected their top 10 bestselling wines. Feel free to share your own…
25% off fine wines plus Easter Food pairing at Waitrose Cellar
The specialists at Waitrose Cellar have put together great tips to match food and wine for Easter. Discover a mouthwatering lamb recipe & wine match, as well as tips from specialist Rebecca Ayoub to match your Easter food with delicious wines. There’s nothing quite like a leg of lamb to feed the family for Sunday lunch, so it needs to be matched with a wine to complement, not overpower it. The Beronia Rioja Reserva is an enjoyable pairing. Beronia Rioja Reserva | Rioja, Spain, 2011, 13.5% ABV…
Waitrose Cellar Top 10 Wines For Easter
Easter is approaching fast and you are all wondering about the wines you will serve. Whether you need something for Good Friday, Sunday lunch or to match with your Easter chocolates, the Waitrose Cellar wine team have put together a great selection of their best wines to enjoy the Easter weekend!
Fab Gifts For Mother's Day At Waitrose
Find the perfect flowers and gifts for Mother’s Day with Waitrose. We have carefully selected our amazing Champagne and flower gifts from Waitrose to help you choose the best present for Mum. See our selections below, or visit the entire Waitrose range. If you're buying wine from Waitrose Cellar, don't forget to use our exclusive voucher code and save £20 off your order over £150. Hurry, expires on Sunday 15th March 2015! Waitrose Flowers & Gifts: Order by 10pm on Friday 13th March for free…
The Loire Valley Wine Guide
The Loire Valley is not only one of the four most important wine regions of France, but one of the most beautiful and scenic parts of the country, with its long stretches of ambling rivers, and picturesque chateaux, which attract visitors from across the globe. It is mainly a white wine producing area, which suits its relatively northern location in France, but produces one of the broadest ranges of wine styles of any major region in the country. The river Loire meanders through over 1000km of…
Competition - Win £150 Voucher From Waitrose Cellar
Which drink helps you fight the Winter blues? Share a link to your favourite tipple from the Waitrose Cellar extensive range, and get a chance to win £150 worth of the drinks of your choice from their website! Hurry, competition closes midday Wednesday 2nd March 2016. How do I enter the competition? Please do contact us if you have any question and we'll be happy to help! This competition ran from the 17/02/2016 until the 02/03/2016 11:59.
Sparkling offers not to miss at Waitrose Cellar
Save up to 1/3 on selected award-winning fizz wines from Waitrose Cellar including Prosecco and Champagne! Get an extra 5% off when you buy any 12 bottles. Use our exclusive Waitrose Cellar voucher code to save an extra £30 off your order when you spend £150 or more! Hurry, expires on Thursday 19th February 2015!
Our Selection Of Champagne & Fizz Gifts For Valentine's Day
Valentine's Day is approaching fast and wine merchants have prepared for it with great prices on Champagne and fizz as well as fabulous gift sets! Whether you are looking for some nice fizz to celebrate or for a gift to impress your loved one, this selection has everything you need! We selected our favourite gifts with Champagne and sparkling wine and divided it into four categories: Feel free to add your own favourites in the comment box at the bottom of this article.
*£18 off £60 & over Coupon T&C: The value of the coupon will be deducted from your order with Sainsbury's online groceries provided that the value of the goods ordered exceeds the minimum qualifying spend stated on the coupon. The qualifying spend excludes delivery charge, spirits & liqueurs, first stage baby milk, tobacco and related products, gift vouchers, savings or postage stamps, e-top up, mobile phone coupons, phone cards, charity products, scratch cards or gaming (games, consoles…
The Best Mixed Cases For Christmas
Christmas is a good opportunity to try new wines but how to choose amongst the thousands and thousands available on the market? Whether you need some wine for your Christmas dinner or just to open a bottle during a winter evening, pre-selected wine cases are usually a good bet. Merchants put together some great cases with wines selected by their experts or according to their popularity amongst customers. Here is a selection of fabulous cases from our most popular merchants. Merry Christmas! Save…
The Best Christmas Wine Gifts Under £35
This is it! Black Friday and Cyber Monday are gone and we've only got two weeks left before Christmas! If you're on a small budget and still haven't found the perfect gift for Christmas, this article is just for you! I've selected great Christmas presents with wine, sparkling or spirits under £35 so you won't be ruined by the end of it. Now £32.00 at Waitrose Cellar A delicious red Burgundy from Savigny-les-Beaune which will compliment this excellent pheasant pate perfectly. Includes: £14.95 at…
Angela Mount's Top 10 Wines From Asda
The wine team at Asda have made a great many changes to their range this year, ringing the changes and bringing in both well-known names and some new, exciting discoveries. Headed by the very astute, and well-respected Master of Wine, Philippa Carr, the team showcased a selection of their 750 strong range at a recent tasting in London. There has been some very clever buying, with a number of delicious wines at very affordable prices. Here are some of my favourites: For a real treat, at a…
The Best Wine & Fortified Gifts For Christmas
Last week, we chose our favourite Champagne and sparkling gifts for Christmas. This week, we are focusing on wine and fortified. Discover fabulous gift packs and hampers with delicious wines to spend a wonderful Christmas! Now £25.79 instead of £51.58 at Your Favourite Wines For Australian wine lovers, this gift set has two bottles of the iconic Penfolds brand. With a Riedel glass, another iconic brand, you will have everything to enjoy a prefect wine tasting. Includes: This gift is also…
Introducing The Christmas Box From Waitrose Cellar
Xenia Irwin, Master of Wine at Waitrose Cellar, has put together a fabulous mixed case of wines to go perfectly with all your Christmas courses. She chose her favourite wines mixing festive reds, whites and sparkling to create a case that will suit everyone. This is an amazing offer as you can save £25 off the Christmas Box now just £99.00 for the 12 bottles. This is just £8.25 per bottle!
Introducing The Vinorium, Passionate About Wines
The Vinorium is an Independent Wine Merchant with an appetite for innovative experiences. They are not profit-margin-chasers; they price all wines at their true value. Ferociously independent, The Vinorium only stock what they believe the customers should be buying. Focused on delivering outstanding value for money, their range is vast and varied with an excess of 10,000 bottles available for you to enjoy. Simply put, they are passionate about…
Angela Mount's Top 10 Tesco Wines
Tesco have ramped up some pretty impressive awards this year – Retailer of the year at the recent Quality Food Awards, Drinks Buying Team of the year for the Drinks Business and the Off Licence News Retail awards, and very importantly, own brand wine retailer of the year for the International Wine Challenge 2014 – to name but a few. They have one of the best own label ranges, under their Finest label, and frequently have led the field in terms of bringing little- known wines to the shelves and…
Over the years, the majority of winemakers started to add more bubblies to their range, so we are able to offer you a wide selection of products from various countries. Choose from the top offers on Italian Prosecco and Asti, Spanish Cava, French Cremant, much acclaimed UK sparkling wine, as well as excellent fizz deals from Australia, New Zealand, USA, Chile and many others. Champagne | Prosecco | Cava | Asti Spumante | Other Sparkling Wine
Angela Mount Presents The QDA Winners 2014
Last week, at a glittering ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London, the winners of the Quality Food and Drink Awards 2014 were announced to a packed audience; The Q awards are arguably the most fiercely contested competition within the food and retail industry, with supermarkets, convenience stores and discount stores, all battling to win the gongs for the best products in a host of categories. The Quality Drink Awards are an integral part of the overall competition and celebrate the very…
Christmas Competition: Win £100 worth of wine at Waitrose Cellar
To enter simply use the box below to subscribe to our Wines Direct newsletter. Get more chances of winning by following us on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter! The winner will be chosen in a prize draw amongst all participants. Competition will run from Thursday 27th November to Wednesday 17th December 2014. Good Luck! This competition ran from the 27/11/2014 until the 17/12/2014 23:59. *The information shared with us will only be used to contact you and send you our newsletter. It will never be…
The Best Sparkling Wine & Champagne Gifts For Christmas
Christmas is in the air and now is the time to buy some presents for your loved ones. Here's a selection of fabulous Champagne and sparkling gifts ideas, because Christmas is always better with bubbles! £35.00 at Waitrose Cellar We couldn’t start this top Christmas sparkling gifts without Champagne and chocolates! Delicious dark chocolate truffles to match the fresh and complex tones of the Champagne. A great treat for a loved one. Includes: This gift is also available with rose Champagne and…
Angela Mount's Top 10 French Wines At Waitrose Cellar
Waitrose continue to scoop up medals and awards galore for their wine range; the latest in a long line is being crowned ‘best supermarket for French wine’ in the recently announced Harpers 2014 French wine awards. The Waitrose French wine range is extensive and includes over 350 wines, ranging from tip top, premium classics, including some cleverly snapped up older vintages, to some of the very best and affordable French wines on the market. With an expert team of buyers, including a number of…
Try The Beaujolais Nouveau 2014
The third Thursday of November, all Beaujolais lovers celebrate the arrival of the new vintage of Beaujolais. Discover the 2014 vintage and its new style! Last year, Beaujolais Nouveau was wearing a dress thanks to a collaboration with the fashion world. For the 2014 vintage, they asked a French artist to design the bottle and illustrate the motto: Beaujolais Nouveau, a French art. Skywak is a young artist from Lille, Northern France, specialized in street art. He chose to work on a festive…
The WSET launches its first intermediate level course for blind students
On 22nd October 2013, the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), in partnership with the Royal London Society for Blind People, launched a brand new Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits course, specifically designed for blind and partially sighted students. This four-day course focuses on how to taste wine and spirits professionally as well as on the knowledge of the major grapes. It will be available to a limited number of students from November 2013 to January 2015 and will take place at the…
20% off the World of Wines Experience - BBC Good Food Show
Wines Direct in partnership with the IWSC are delighted to offer you a 20% voucher code off your tickets to the World of Wines Experience at the BBC Good Food Show London 2014! This new, exclusive tasting will be held within the BBC Good Food Show to be held in London Olympia from Friday 14th to Sunday 16th of November 2014. Book a session to taste IWSC award winners and then spend the rest of the day at the show tasting, shopping and watching cooking demonstrations. Famous chefs will be present…
Celebrating The Chocolate Week With Wine
This week (13-19 October) is dedicated to chocolate in the UK with a lot of events including the Chocolate Show in London. We thought it would be great to feature the best wines and spirits to match with chocolate. Whether they are chocolate flavoured or they go very well with chocolate, we have selected a few wines, spirits and gift sets to enjoy this week with indulgent treats! The Chocolate Block From £19.99 South Africa, Western Cape, 2012 Our expert, Angela Mount, loves it! As its…
Celebrate The London Cocktail Week With Great Classics
From the 6th to 12th October 2014, London is celebrating cocktails with events all around the city. 200 bars will be offering £4 cocktails to customers wearing LCW wristbands, there will be parties, popups, tastings events and more throughout the capital. We decided to feature one cocktail recipe a day during this week to celebrate fabulous classics and delicious mix. Feel free to add your own recipes or tips in the comment box below. And above all, enjoy this week with a nice cocktail!
Try homegrown wines with 25% off at Waitrose
Waitrose truly believe in the principle of supporting our local producers in an industry that's going from strength to strength. They have won IWC's 2014 Specialist Merchant of the Year for English Wine, with a range of over 60 delicious wines to try, many of which have recently won awards! Find your local vineyard on the interactive map at Waitrose Cellar.
Unveiling Waitrose Wine Buyers' Autumn Favourites Case
Giving a good start to the Autumnal season, Waitrose wine buyers have selected their favourite wines to create the Autumn Buyers' Favourites Case. A great offer as these 12 carefully selected wines are now just £95 instead of £137, saving you £42 per case!!! Save £20 off your order over £120 with our Waitrose Cellar promotion code.
And The Winners Are...
Congratulations to John Richardson and Nicola Holland, the winners of our "Review a wine" competition! Both will receive a fabulous bottle of Grand Cru Champagne by post as they wrote great reviews on Wines Direct! A big thank you to all the participants who wrote amazing reviews during this competition. We really appreciate your opinion as it helps all our fellow wine drinkers make their mind while choosing a wine. John Richardson's review of Yellow Tail Shiraz was chosen as the best review…
Kumala Leading South African Wine Growth
The 10th of September was full of good news for South African wines. The IWSC revealed the 2014 award results for South America and South Africa and we discovered that 50% of the awards went to South Africa! The same day, Accolade Wines announced that their South African brand portfolio (Kumala, Fish Hoek and Flagstone) are leading the growth in South African wine. In the UK, Kumala is the number one South African wine brand and the sixth largest wine brand in the whole market. This year…
Bestselling offers at WaitroseCellar
Here's our selection from Waitrose Cellar's current offers. Shop over 200 offers including popular wines and award winners. Plus, we have a £20 off £120 code. Free delivery on all orders and an extra 5% off when you choose any 12 wines.
South American Wine Survey - Wines Direct
Please note this offer is now expired Fill in our short survey on South American wines for your chance to win a mixed case of expertly selected wines from Chile! The survey should take no longer than three minutes and is set up to understand what makes you excited about the wines of South America. We have made the whole survey multiple choice to make it as easy as possible to complete.
Waitrose Cocktails For Summer Nights
Summer nights are perfect to throw outdoors parties! You can relax in the garden with a delicious cocktail, keeping you warm against the fresh night breeze. Here is a selection of three amazing cocktail ideas made by Waitrose Cellar for you to enjoy great nights this summer! See our previous articles with a selection of light & easy cocktails and cocktails for the twilight hour. Have a look at all Waitrose Cellar cocktail recipes. Serves 1 Vigorously shake all the ingredients with ice and strain…
Win Grand Cru Champagne When You Review Wine
We have 2 bottles of Grand Cru Champagne to give away! One for the best review written on Wines Direct and a prize draw for all the other reviews. We try to help our users get the most valuable information to choose the right wines at the right price. And who better to advise about a wine than someone who actually tried it? That's why we want to reward the users who take the time to write reviews on our website with delicious Grand Cru Champagne. To enter the competition, just review a product…
Waitrose Cocktails For Summer - The Twilight Selection
Twilight during the summer is a great moment to chill and relax with friends. The temperature may be dropping but evenings are still warm, the sun gradually disappearing creates a nice atmosphere. A wonderful moment to enjoy a nice cocktail with something to nibble. Here is our selection of four cocktails made by Waitrose Cellar with great spirit brands. See our previous article with a selection of light & easy cocktails from Waitrose Cellar. Serves 1 Shake the vodka and apple juice with ice…
Waitrose Cellar Light & Easy Cocktails For Summer
The sun has been shining a lot this summer, apart from a few typically English rainy days. This lovely summery weather is an excellent reason to go outside and enjoy a nice party with friends. And an outdoor party wouldn't be perfect without some fresh drinks. Waitrose Cellar have put together a few cocktail recipes to help you impress your friends and have a great time. For our first feature, we chose a selection of three light and easy ones which you can have at lunch time or in the afternoon…
Cool rosé wines are great for warm evenings and are delicious with food. Please note the 25% off rose wines at Waitrose Cellar offer has now expired.
Pinotage, Love it or Hate it!
Pinotage is a grape native to South Africa, which has been grown there since 1925. A cross between the Pinot Noir and Cinsaut grapes, it is unique in style, and tends to have a ‘marmite’ effect on wine drinkers, who either love it or loathe it! A little is grown in New Zealand, but it is mainly unique to South Africa. It’s a maverick grape, and a workhorse grape for South African red wines; produced as a single varietal, especially on single estates, it’s also a key component of most of the red…
Top Champagne offers at Waitrose
We've picked out our favourites from Waitrose Cellar offer for 25% off over 70 Champagne & fizz! We've also been given an exclusive £30 off voucher code when you spend over £150. See our favourite award-winning fizz. Watch the new tasting videos for each on Waitrose Cellar. Please note this offer expired on 15th July 2014 and is no longer available.
WSET, Wine Education Made Easy
By Angela Mount Ever worried about which wine to buy? Don’t know the difference between Sauvignon and Semillon? Want to know what goes best with fish and chips? Well, there’s a simple solution, for the thousands out there who’d like to know a teeny bit more about wine, but are afraid to ask. The smart-sounding ‘Wine & Spirit Education Trust’ has the answers – in a non-stuffy way. It’s a business that runs both serious courses for wine professionals, but also fun, informative courses for those…
Introducing The New Waitrose Heston Fruit Cup
Michelin star chef Heston Blumenthal has launched his exclusive Fruit Cup with Waitrose. Based on Heston's award-winning Earl Grey & Lemon Gin, the gin is blended with elderflower, blackcurrant and raspberry liqueurs and infused with eight specially selected botanicals. Heston Blumenthal comments, ‘My new seasonal drink is summer in a cup. I wanted to create a fresh, light taste that will refresh everyone on a summer’s day. The hint of Earl Grey is the finishing touch that makes it a truly…
Facebook Summer Competition - Win £150 worth of wine at Waitrose Cellar
Which drink keeps you going in the summer? Share a link to your favourite tipple from the Waitrose Cellar amazing range, and get a chance to win £150 worth of the drinks of your choice from their website! Hurry, competition closes midday Tuesday 7th July 2015. How do I enter the competition? Please do contact us if you have any question and we'll be happy to help! This competition ran from the 24/06/2015 until the 07/07/2015 11:59.
Chenin Blanc, From The Loire Valley To South Africa
Chenin Blanc is a very versatile white grape, which produces one of the greatest range of wine styles of all, from searingly dry sparkling wines, through fresh, fruity dry whites, to luscious dessert wines. It can produce wines that are sublime, ethereal, and unique; it can also produce gallons of dull, entry level table wine, from different parts of the globe. Chenin Blanc is a grape, which is fairly neutral in character, but has very high natural acidity. Like the Riesling, it is one of the…
Marlborough Wines: A Success Story
Back in the 1960s, New Zealand's North Island had started to be serious about wine production, but there was not a single vine planted on the South Island. The first plantings of Sauvignon Blanc in Marlborough did not occur until 1973. It was due to travelling New Zealanders who visited European wine regions and returned, and had the vision that the international status of the country as a wine producing nation was established. Leading wine producers such as Te Mata and Matua valley saw the…
Flash Sale - South American Superstars
Please note this offer has now expired. Save £15 off South American Superstars with our exclusive voucher code for Tesco Wine by the Case. This offer is open to new and existing customers and gives you a chance to snap up a great deal on your favourite South American wines! The number of redemptions is limited on this offer so make sure you purchase now to avoid disappointment. The offer is valid on 19 South American Superstars and cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers. Your…
Pinot Gris Or Pinot Grigio?
Pinot Gris or Pinot Grigio? Pinot Grigio has sprung to fame over recent years, and has single handedly accounted for the dramatic rise in sales of Italian white wine in the UK. It is a grape that is grown increasingly, all over the world, but its heart is in Europe, with Italy and Alsace at its core. It’s a grape variety that can adopt many guises, from light, peachy, and fresh, to weighty, aromatic and complex, and this depends entirely on where and how it is grown. It’s a thin skinned grape…
The Quality Drink Awards - Finding The Very Best At Every Price Point
The Quality Drink Awards are part of one of the, if not THE, most important and prestigious food awards in the UK, The Quality Food Awards, which recognise and reward the very best of products that are on sale in grocery stores, be that supermarket, convenience, or discounter, throughout the UK. At the glittering awards ceremony, normally held at the swanky Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, and hosted by a celebrity luminary such as the brilliantly funny Rory Bremner last year, these are…
Our Top 10 Offers From Waitrose Cellar 25% Off All Wine Sale
Great news! Waitrose Cellar has launched a 25% off all wine & Champagne sale until Tuesday 17th June. Stock up on your favourite wines or try something new. To help you choose your mixed case, we have carefully selected what we think are their top 10 offers. How do I get my discount? The 25% discount is automatically applied at checkout when you buy any 6 bottles of wine and/or Champagne at Waitrose Cellar. The offer excludes spirits, Fine & Rare, gifts and En Primeur service. Hurry as the sale…
Slow-Roasted Lamb Shoulder With Sentieri Barbera
Last but not least, discover Waitrose Spring Foodie Case sixth recipe! Mouthwatering slow-roasted lamb with Italian Barbera from Sentieri. To get all the recipes and matching wines, order the Spring Foodie Case now £83.94 at Waitrose Cellar. Buy any 6 bottles and get them delivered for free. Ingredients For the salsa: Preheat the oven to 150°C. Add chicken stock to a pan and bring to the boil. For the lamb shoulder, use a sharp knife to make 2cm-deep holes all over the flesh. Insert one clove of…
An Introduction to Chateauneuf-du-Pape
This is without doubt, the most famous wine producing area and best known name in the Rhone. Located just north of Avignon, the village gets its name from the fact that it became the ‘new’ home of Pope Clement in the 14th century, and the village is full of heritage, history and remains of medieval buildings. It is the driest of all the Rhone appellations, and the vines have to work very hard to get the nutrition they need. It is a large area, with a surface over 25 times that of Hermitage in…
Spiced aubergine & sweet potato ragout with Malbec
Serves 4/6 Prepare 35 minutes Cook 1 hour + 30 minutes chilling Ingredients For the ragout: For the polenta chips: For the herb yoghurt: Method: Start by pre-heating the sunflower oil in a deep-fat fryer to 190°C. To make the ragout, fry the onions and garlic in the olive oil with a pinch of salt over a low heat for 5 minutes. Add the spices and continue to stir for 3 minutes. Add the aubergine, sweet potato and chickpeas and stir well to coat in the spices. Fold the tomatoes, vinegar, honey…
Vandalism or Poetry?
A Flickr user decided to replace the description of some lower end wines in his local supermarket with his own tasting notes. The result is quite amusing and truly poetic! How long these will stay unnoticed by the staff, we don't know, but it should definitely make some customers smile and they might even be tempted to buy the wine! Source: Id-iom Flickr account This might inspire some other wine poets with unbridled imagination. If it happens, send us the pictures!
The Best Wine & Spirit Gifts For Father's Day
Father's Day is coming around fast and you still don't have a present? No problem, sit back, relax and have a look at our selection of the best gifts. We have collected a good range of everything from whisky to fine wine and even some bubbles because that's what a hero deserves! Two bottles of the delicious Penfolds Koonunga Hill with a Riedel wine glass to enjoy even more! Perfect for wine lovers! Includes: Your Favourite Wines also offer free branded apron or wine cooler when you buy…
Win A Bottle Of Taittinger & Cufflinks For Father's Day
Sunday 15th June is Father's Day! We decided to help you show how much you love your daddy with a new competition. Win a bottle of Taittinger Champagne with branded cufflinks worth over £80. To enter simply use the box below and follow the instructions shown on screen. We have even added two bonus entry options so you can increase your chance of winning! Good Luck! This competition ran from the 30/05/2014 until the 11/06/2014 23:59.
Chicken Breast With Stonier Pinot Noir
If you spent the weekend looking for inspiration for your summer menu planning, why not try the fourth recipe from Waitrose Cellar's Spring Foodie Case? Delicious chicken breast fillets with pancetta, broad beans and herb mascarpone to pair with an Australian Pinot Noir made by Stonier. Nom nom! Order your own Spring Foodie Case now £83.94 at Waitrose Cellar which comes with all the recipes. Still with free delivery and a minimum purchase of any 6 bottles. Ingredients For the marinade: For the…
The Quality Drink Awards
The Quality Drink Awards are part of one of the largest and most prestigious food awards in the UK, The Quality Food Awards. The awards recognise and reward the very best products available from grocery stores in the UK and are judged by an independent panel of wine experts. Each wine is scrutinised and assessed on its taste, cost and whether it offers real value for money for UK customers who love wine as an everyday or weekend treat.
Thyme-Roasted Pork With Dr. Loosen Riesling
You were waiting for it, the third recipe from the Waitrose Cellar Spring Foodie Case has arrived! A mouthwatering thyme-roasted pork to match with a spicy German Riesling from Dr. Loosen. To receive the wines perfectly matching the 6 seasonal recipes, buy the Spring Foodie Case now £83.94 at Waitrose Cellar which comes with the leaflet. Delivery is free and there is a minimum purchase of any 6 bottles. Ingredients For the roasted garlic and shallots: For the pears: For the gravy: Remove the…
What To Do On English Wine Week 2014
The English Wine Week 2014 is starting on Saturday 24th of May and will run until Sunday 1st of June. It is a great occasion to enjoy delicious English wines and discover more about what our national wine production has to offer. Events are taking place all over the country to celebrate our great wines. From vineyards opening their doors, to hotels and shop offering wine tastings, you should definitely be able to find an event near home and spend a great time learning more about English wine! We…
Cabernet Franc, Not Just A Blend Grape
Cabernet Franc is one of the top 20 most planted grape varieties in the world, and one of the 3 key components in all Bordeaux wines. It’s a thin-skinned grape, with relatively low tannin and acid levels, which rarely has a chance to shine on its own, but is very frequently used as a vital component in a blend – this is particularly true in Bordeaux, where it is the 3rd of the 3 main grape varieties, after Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. It is grown all over the world, and is a superb grape, as…
Poached Trout With Vasse Felix Semillon Sauv Blanc
As promised last week, here is the second recipe from the Waitrose Cellar Spring Foodie Case. A wonderful poached trout paired with a delicious white wine from Vasse Felix. If you missed the fabulous beer-battered fish & chips with Cave De Lugny Sparkling Burgundy, it's time to catch up! The Spring Foodie Case is now £83.94 at Waitrose Cellar and is delivered with the leaflet containing all the recipes. Get free delivery and order any 6 bottles at Waitrose Cellar. Ingredients For the dressing:…
Top 10 Sauvignon Blancs
Today marks international Sauvignon Blanc day, an initiative started in California five years ago which is now used worldwide as a great excuse to celebrate one of the worlds most popular and most accessible grapes. We’re in a really lucky position at Wines Direct as we get to watch wine trends like Prosecco and New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc rise from a market wide perspective. Whether it’s the sudden surge in people heading to our brand, region and product pages or the rise in supermarket…
Grenache, A World-Wide Success
Grenache is a red grape, which originated in the southern Rhone valley, and is now one of the most widely planted grapes in the world. As well as its native France, it is now grown all over the world, but primarily in Australia and California. It is the second most widely planted grape in Spain, where it is known as ‘Garnacha’. In France, where it is also grown in Languedoc-Roussillon, as well as its native Rhone, it is generally used as part of a blend, and is used in up to 80% of all the…
Beer-battered fish & chips with Cave de Lugny Sparkling Burgundy
Waitrose Cellar has teamed up with the Waitrose Cookery School to create this exclusive Spring Foodie Case of 6 fine wines delivered with 6 bespoke recipes. We are very excited to be able to share a selection of these amazing food and wine matches along with expertly crafted recipes over the next few weeks. You can buy The Spring Foodie Case for £83.94 at Waitrose Cellar. The case comes with a leaflet containing all the matching recipes. Visit the new Waitrose Cellar website, order any 6 bottles…
Ravenswood, The King Of Zin
Ravenswood has a unique story within the Californian wine industry. Firstly, its credo is 'no wimpy wines'; secondly it is produced by anecdotally, one of the greatest winemakers in the world; thirdly it is an icon amongst ‘Zins’, and has a loyal and cult following for its rich, distinctive wines, and for its equally distinctive and bold logo and label. Winemaker Joel Peterson, is revered by winemakers and critics around the world, and has been hailed the undisputed ‘King of Zin’ –…
Visit Chile & Its Incredible Wine Regions
Chilean wine burst onto the scene in the UK in the early nineties, on the cusp of the New World wave, originally created by Australia. Chile brought to the market superb value, reliability, well- known grape varieties, and fruity, approachable wines, mainly from grape varieties that were known and recognizable. Whilst Chile has a very long wine-making history, dating back to the 16th century, it was really only in the 1980s, that the Chilean wine industry had a revival, partly due to the influx…
Discover Faustino, Rioja Winemaker
The Faustino bottle, with its dark, frosted glass, and old fashioned, highly traditional label, is one of the most instantly recognised Spanish wines in the UK. It is also one of the top 3 Spanish brands in the UK. Whilst not in the top 50 unique brands in the UK, Faustino has stayed the test of time, and is still hugely popular, with a very loyal following. In a market almost completely dominated by New World brands, Spanish brands have struggled, with only Campo Viejo and Torres making it…
Malbec, Between France & Argentina
Malbec is a thin skinned black grape, whose origins are in the south west of France, but which has risen to fame, as the ‘national grape’ of Argentina. A grape, that requires lots of sunshine and heat to fully ripen, it is perfectly suited to the hot Argentine climate, where it is viewed as simply the best wine to go with what can only be described as their national dish, steak. In France, it is still the main grape grown in Cahors, where it is sometimes knows as Cot Noir, and produces big…
The First English Sauvignon Blanc
Good news for English wine lovers, the portfolio of varieties grown in the UK is expanding! Denbies Wine Estate, situated in Surrey, is the first English vineyard to grow Sauvignon Blanc grapes on UK soil. Following their first announcement in November 2013, the wine is currently maturing in Hungarian oak barrels and is due to be released in Autumn this year. The grapes from Bordeaux were planted four years ago on a three acre plot and were harvested for the first time at the end of 2013. The…
Unveil The Secrets Of Zinfandel
The Californians have always claimed the Zinfandel for their own, effectively seeing it as their national, or signature grape. However it has been the subject of hot debate in recent years, when it was claimed that this grape, on which Californian wine producers staked national pride, was in fact, the Italian Primitivo grape, grown in Puglia and throughout Southern Italy. Research has now proved that the grapes are genetically identical. Amidst lots of excitement and some perturbation from the…
Squealing Pig Competition
Win 6 bottles of gold medal winning Squealing Pig wine worth over £70 in our brand new competition sponsored by Your Favourite Wines. To enter simply use the box below and follow the instructions shown on screen. We have even added two bonus entry options so you can increase your chance of winning! Good Luck! This competition ran from the 23/04/2014 until the 07/05/2014 11:59pm.
Facebook Competition - Win £100 worth of wine at Waitrose Cellar
Red, White, or Rosé? Waitrose Cellar are giving away a case of the wine of your choice worth £100. Take a look at their extensive range of wine and share a link of your favourite bottle for a chance to win! Hurry, competition closes midday Wednesday 29th April 2015. How do I participate? Feel free to contact us if you have any question and we'll be happy to help! Thank you so much for the 13 bottles of wine I won in your recent competition, fabulous service from the Waitrose Wine team, received…
Waitrose Delicious Food & Wine Pairing For Easter
Get these products delivered to your door in time for Easter: standard delivery is free and next/named day delivery is £4.95. Champagne Bredon Cuvee Jean Louis Brut NV - £17.99 Kick off your Easter celebrations with this great value Champagne — perfect served with nibbles and canapés. It’s smooth, fruity and toasty and packed with delicious bubbles. M. Chapoutier Petite Ruche Crozes Hermitage - £11.99 A terrific choice if you’re serving a traditional roast, this wine has a ripe…
Top Wines With Fish & Lamb For Easter
If you are going for the traditional fish on Good Friday and the lamb on Easter Sunday, have you already thought about the wine you will serve on your menu? Don't panic as we have selected the top 10 wines to pair with fish and lamb just for you! So pick your favourite(s) and enjoy this weekend! Get these wines in time for Easter: standard delivery is free and next/named day delivery is £4.95 at Waitrose Wine.
The Wines Of Touraine
This predominantly white wine producing region lies at the heart of the Loire Valley, just east of the beautiful city of Tours. The wine styles vary from dry, through medium (demi sec) to richly, but elegantly sweet (Moelleux). It is here that much of the sparkling wine of the Loire is made, often labelled Mousseux. It is in the Touraine region, that the most unique terroir of the Loire is most seen; the yellowish, ‘tuffeau’ soil and rocks are unique to this region, and were formed over 90…
Wine Tour Of Anjou & Saumur
These 2 distinct appelations in the middle Loire are closely located and naturally sit together. The wine producing areas are centred on the 2 scenic towns of Anjou and Saumur, both key ‘to visit’ places on most tourist trips of the Loire Valley, with their numerous chateaux and idyllic scenery. The Anjou/Saumur area produces arguably the most varied range of wine styles in the Loire, from fruity dry whites, off dry roses, to some of the greatest, and relatively undiscovered sweet wines of…
What Is Muscadet?
The most western part of the Loire, where the river flows into the Atlantic, is known as Pays Nantais, as it is centred on the old historic city of Nantes. It is better known as the region of Muscadet, although this technically-speaking describes the grape from which the most famous wine in the area is made. The area, almost 100km wide, produces almost exclusively Muscadet, especially since the 18th century, when its frost resistant and hardy properties were discovered – well suited to the cold…
Take Me To Chinon
The red wine producing region of Chinon lies on the southern side of the Loire river, just east of Saumur. Almost 90% of the wines produced here are red, made predominantly from the Cabernet Franc grape, with a small amount of Cabernet Sauvignon and also Pineau d’Aunis. The wines are generally light to medium bodied in style, with a fresh, vibrant, raspberry fruit character, but in the best areas, these reds can develop into wines of texture, richness and some degree of longevity, whilst…
Discover Sancerre
This is the most famous part of the Upper Loire, producing mainly distinctive, grassy, gun-flinty dry whites, with a small proportion of fruity dry Rose and some elegant reds. Styles: Whites are crisp, bone dry, pungent and very aromatic, with aromas and flavours of gooseberries, wild herbs, freshly cut grass, and a smokey, minerally edge. Roses are gentle, raspberry- scented and delicately dry, whilst the reds have a delicate, cool climate, soft and silky character, with gentle tannins, and…
The Best Gifts For Mothers Day
Mothers Day is just around the corner (it's this Sunday) and if you still haven't found a present, don't panic. Here is our selection of the best gifts. Because we all know a nice bottle of wine or bubbles will make her feel very special! This delicious bottle of Mumm Champagne was definitely made for the occasion! The best way to show your mum how incredible she is to you. Includes: A fabulous gift to show how special your mum is - a beautiful miniature pink rose presented in a wine cooler…
Angela Mount's Top Fairtrade Wines
We’re coming to the end of Fairtrade Fortnight, and I’ve been trying out a wide range of Fairtrade approved wines. Some are great; some aren’t. Fairtrade wine is a fabulous concept and initiative – every Fairtrade approved winery, in South Africa, Chile and Argentina is contributing back to the community where it is based – supporting the farm and winery workers and their families - by ensuring that the workers get a decent living wage, Childcare, education, youth projects, housing, fresh…
How To Match Spices & Wine By Dhruv Baker
“As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.” - Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast I’m often asked about my views on food and occasionally about wine but very rarely about the two in conjunction…
Dhruv Bakers Favourite Wines for Food
Riesling is one of my favourite styles of wine, and it suits my style of cooking perfectly. This is a fabulous wine, from a top, family-run estate in the Rheingau in Germany. It’s bone dry, but still very aromatic, with lots of lively citrus, floral, and gentle herb and spice character. Decanter German Dry White over £15 Regional Trophy 2013 Gruner Veltliner is a favourite of mine, and very fashionable right now. This one’s from its home country, Austria, and it has just the right amount of…
What To Drink On Valentine's Day?
Roses are red, and Valentine’s Day wines tend to be pink; but not exclusively. I’ve rounded up a selection of wines and sparklers that can’t fail to please, for a romantic evening in. With more and more loved-up couples opting to stay in rather than face the often awkward and staged Valentine’s Night at a restaurant, here are a few ideas for wines to fit the mood, from Champagne and sparkling wine to whites and reds that will work with a lovingly-prepared dinner in. Valentine’s wouldn’t be…
Virgin Wines Valentine Case
Virgin Wines have just released an amazing mixed case perfect for Valentine’s Day. Not only is it full of glamorous wines but it’s also very cheap: £32.94 instead of £53.94 for the 6 bottles including Prosecco and 2 free Champagne flutes! This type of offer doesn’t happen very often so we really wanted to share it with you. The case contains 3 bottles of red wine, 2 of white, 1 of Prosecco and 2 Champagne flutes to treat yourself or someone special. Find out more about the content of the case…
The Best Wine & Champagne Gifts For Valentines 2014
Unfold Veuve Clicquot's beautiful special edition gift box to reveal a bottle of their classic Rose. Inspired by the landscape art of Japanese Shakkei, the gift box delicately unfolds like a kimono. See some Larger pictures here. For ten years Boy (Adrian) and Girl (Rebecca) dreamed of producing their own wine, fast - forward to the present and Naked Wines made this possible. The wine doesn't just have an amazing label it also ranks highly with many Naked Wines Angels. Pictured above is the…
Shiraz
The Syrah or Shiraz grape is a dense, thick-skinned black grape, whose origins are in the northern Rhone valley region of France. A versatile, prolific and well-travelled grape, it has made Australia its second home, where it has become the national grape, known as Shiraz. If you are looking for subtle, delicate restrained reds, then the Shiraz grape is not for you. It’s ebullience, wildness, and richness packs a punch, but at the same time produces some of the finest, most complex red wines in…
Semillon
Semillon is a white grape variety, that is planted across the world, but whose origins lie in Bordeaux. A star in its own right for producing the greatest sweet wines in the world, from Bordeaux, and also, at the other end of the scale, some of the longest lived and complex white wines of Australia, notably from the Hunter Valley, it falls into a pool of blends, within these 2 extremes. It’s a thick-skinned grape, but one which can frequently overripen if not tended carefully; it is a key…
What's On The label
What’s on the label of a wine plays a crucial role in the overall presentation and proposition of a wine; after all, unless you are being guided through a selection of wines by a wine advisor, if you are browsing the shelves, it’s the image and the information on the label that’s going to capture your attention, or fade into insignificance. It’s interesting to look at how people buy wine; think about your own decision-making process. It normally centres on one of three things: 1. Colour 2. Price…
Waitrose Foodies Case
It’s the ultimate treat or gift for any foodie; Waitrose Wine and Waitrose Cookery School have created The Foodie Case. Six beautiful fine wines have inspired six mouthwatering recipes to complement them, specially created by the Waitrose Cookery School Head Chef, Gordon McDermott. At £70, this case is worth over £80, and is delivered complete with the recipes. Click here to view all recipes Roast scallops with potato gnocchi and truffle emulsion - Paired with - Terredora Greco di Tufo…
Angela Mount's Top 10 Waitrose Wines
Waitrose regularly win the gongs for Best wine supermarket and best wine buying team in the major UK competitions. I’ve reviewed a selection of their range recently and here are some of my latest favourites. There’s a lovely softness and creaminess to this well-selected , highly popular fizz from northern Italy. With a lot of nasty, acidic Prosecco now hitting the market at the moment, it’s great to find a well made, gentle, charmingly fruity one, showing a delicate stream of bubbles. With a…
How To Make Champagne?
A sparkling wine can only be called Champagne if it is produced in the Champagne region of Northern France. All Champagnes is made by the traditional method or ‘méthode champenoise’, as it is known in French. This method is also used for the production of other quality sparkling wines, including Cava. However, according to EU law, the name Champagne, and indeed ‘méthode champenoise’ can only be used for wine produced in the Champagne region. Champagne is produced from 3 main grape varieties…
Angela Mount's Top Prosecco & Champagne
A glass full of bubbles is always welcome, exciting, and lifts the spirits, be it for the festive season, or any other time. Champagne and sparkling wines used to be saved for special occasions, but are now far more of our everyday experiences. However, over 30% of all fizz is still sold in December alone, so now’s the right time to be looking at the top choices available. Everyone loves a glass of fizz, but there are lots of different styles, and a big difference in price. 5 years ago, apart…
Waitrose 20 delicious food & drink gift ideas
Who wouldn't love to receive a hamper full of indulgent food and drink to dip into over Christmas? Waitrose have beautifully presented food and drink hampers and gift sets, great for those hard-to-buy-for people and friends and family you may not be seeing over the festive season. Filled with gourmet treats from specialist producers, hampers start from £20 and include fresh cheese and meat selections for the whole family to enjoy, as well as elegant baskets filled with grown-up nibbles. All…
Angela Mount's Top Wines For Christmas Day
There are lots of fantastic wines out there for the festive season, and I’ve written about many of them in my recent pieces. But what do you choose for Christmas Day itself? Here are a few ideas: Don’t bring your most serious bottles of wine out, they won’t be appreciated amongst all the excitement of the festivities; instead, find wines that have rich flavours, and great character. A glass of Bucks Fizz is always a great way to start the day, but hold on the Champagne until later. I’d suggest…
The Best Christmas Mixed Wine Cases
If you need to find the best Christmas present for a wine lover or if you are looking for a nice selection of wines to enjoy this Christmas celebrations, this article is for you! After selecting the Best Christmas Hampers and the Best Gifts For Men and Women, we have listed the best mixed wine cases from our merchants. Red, white, pink and sparkling, we have everything you have ever wanted to spend a wonderful Christmas! Average price per bottle: £12.50 This case has all the classics you’ll need…
Angela Mount's Top 10 Red Wines For Christmas
Choosing red wines for Christmas is never easy, as there are so many different occasions, different events, different moods. This selection are some suggestions for Christmas Drinks Parties, family suppers, Boxing Day buffets and that all–important glass of wine when there is a moment to relax. Following on from my top whites for the Festive Season, in this second instalment, I’ve put together a selection of my reds. Here are a few tips to help you choose: • For drinks parties, you need bright…
Angela Mount's Top 10 White Wines For Christmas
Christmas isn’t just about one day, it’s a month-long festive marathon of parties and entertaining. Of course, everyone wants tips for the right wines for Christmas Day, but those aren’t necessarily the same wines that will work for pre- Christmas parties, Boxing Day lunches, and those rare, but welcome ‘in between’ moment, when there is a second to relax, with a simple supper and a glass of something good. I’ve put together a selection of my top wines for the festive season, starting with my…
The Best Christmas Gifts For Women
After last week's feature for the gentlemen, we have prepared a list of the best gifts for women this Christmas. There's no need for the last minute rush to secure the perfect present as we have trawled through all our merchants offerings and picked out only the very best. Flowers, Champagne and chocolates, what else do you need? This elegant gift box will be the perfect way to say how much you love her. Includes: The star of pink Champagnes just for her! Treat her well with this unique fruity…
Angela Mount's Top Morrisons Cellar Wines
There has been a major reshuffle in terms of the buying team at Morrisons in the past year, with a complete revamp of their wine selection as well; out with the ‘the Best’ and in with ‘Signature’, a range of wines that the wine buyers have personally selected. These wines have only been in the stores since October, but are well worth a try; it’s early days, but there are some cracking wines to try. I have mixed views on the labels, some are classic and spot on, others just don’t work for…
The Best Christmas Gifts For Men
Are you trying to find the best Christmas present for your boyfriend, father, grandfather or brother, or even all of them? It is usually quite difficult to find a good present for a man. So for a little bit of inspiration we have put together our top list of the best wine and spirit gifts for men. Cheese fan? This basket is full of excellent products: good wine, good crackers and of course, good cheese! What else do you need? Includes: If you want to learn more about whisky or even if you…
Christmas Contest 2013
This contest is now over. Answer our poll on Sparkling Wine below and get a chance to win a bottle of Chaillot Brut Champagne for Christmas! Answer our poll on Sparkling Wines below before Wednesday the 11th of December at midnight. Fill in your name and email address so that we know who you are and can contact you in case you win. Like our Facebook Page and follow us on Twitter and Google+ to get extra chances to win! The winner will be drawn at random amongst the entrants. We will contact you…
The Best Christmas Hampers
This is it! Christmas is in the air. The streets are decorated with baubles and tinsels; in shops, the shelves are full of Christmas decorations and gifts; on TV, Christmas ads are everywhere! This is the time of the year when everyone is wondering: ‘What present am I going to buy?’ Gifts are usually the most difficult part of Christmas and that’s why we decided to help you with our top 10 Christmas Hampers from Waitrose, Tesco, Fortnum & Mason, Selfridges and Harrods. This nice willow basket is…
Angela Mount's Top 10 Tesco Wines
This year Tesco have been scooping up the wine gongs, winning both Decanter's Supermarket of the Year award in September, and the International Wine and Spirit Competition Retailer of the Year earlier this month. As well as this, the wine team have just added to the range of Tesco Finest wines with some new, quirky selections, from Slovenia to Southern Italy. With this in mind, I've recently been tasting a selection of their wines, and here is my own top 10 from their Finest selection, including…
Beaujolais Nouveau 2013
Today is the release of Beaujolais Nouveau (New Beaujolais). So what’s this all about? Every year, on the third Thursday of November, the Beaujolais Nouveau is released at 12:01am in France. It is the earliest wine of the year, sold just 6 weeks after it’s been harvested. It is a very good occasion for people to celebrate and taste this new wine. Everywhere in France, there are fireworks, festivals and tastings in cafes and restaurants. This celebration has also been exported to other countries…
Drinks By The Dram Advent Calendar
Looking for original advent calendar ideas? If you are bored with the usual chocolate calendars or think they are a bit childish for you now, then those three advent calendars might be of interest. Open the 24 little doors and get a new flavour of whisky or gin every day until Christmas! The whisky calendar even has a premium version. And if you still fancy some chocolate, why not having it as the accompaniment of your drink? These amazing treats will make you wish Christmas wasn't coming so…
Spanish Bull
Did you know that the bull you can see everywhere along Spanish roads is originally from an advertisement made by Osborne, a Spanish food and drink brand? Osborne started producing sherry in 1772 in Southern Spain. It gradually introduced other products to its protfolio such as Rioja wine, Port, brandy, spirits or energy drinks, and Iberian ham. In 1956, Manolo Prieto designed the bull shape to advertise Veterano, the main Osborne brandy at the time. The bull was then displayed on huge…
Lindauer is one of the top 20 sparkling wines in the UK. A high quality Sparkling wine from New Zealand, it’s that country’s top selling and most exported fizz, and is owned by one of New Zealand’s leading and largest wine company Brancott Estate. Sparkling wine is currently one of the most buoyant categories in a difficult wine market at present, and is actually benefitting from the focus on value for money, during tough economic times. At a time, when the wine market is largely static, and…
Marques de Caceres is one of the best known Rioja producers, but unknown to many, it does not have the centuries of heritage of many of its competitors, having been established as late as 1968. In this relatively short period of time, it has become an important force in the Rioja industry, bringing a revolutionary way of thinking, state of the art technology, and a freshness of approach to a very traditional region. Today the brand sells over 2.8 million cases worldwide, at least double that of…
Supermarket Wine Wars
First it was Tesco, then Waitrose, Morrisons have cottoned on, and Asda are about to join the party. What’s the big secret? There’s money to me made in the growing UK online wine market and no one is better suited to make it than our biggest UK supermarkets, which have the brand, the customers and distribution to deliver mass volumes. Five of the large supermarkets now have a dedicated wine websites to tempt in wine consumers and the ones that do not will surely follow in the near future. With…
What the DOC? Understanding The Different Styles of Prosecco
The rapid increase in popularity of Prosecco was one of the reasons behind the extension of the legally permitted production area. Now those areas have been re-designated as DOCG and cover the Asolo / Colli Asolani and Conegliano / Valdobbiadene areas. The remaining, wider DOC area covers Treviso in the Veneto and Trieste in Friuli. With the dramatic growth in demand comes a divergence of opinion and belief amongst the producers, in terms of their core values. Whilst all are delighted with the…
Perrier-Jouet
Perrier- Jouet, a Champagne known for its style, and elegance, just slips into the top 10 Champagne brands in the UK. Founded over 200 years ago, the brand has developed a very upmarket reputation and is immediately identified with the iconic, flower label bottle, and Belle Epoque premium Champagne, conjuring up the image of Paris in the late 19th century. Perrier-Jouet is best known for its beautifully packaged, Belle Epoque Champagne, which is now the number 3 prestige Champagne in the world…
Morrisons 25% off Wine & Champagne
***This offer has now finished, see our Morrisons Cellar wine offers page for details of new promotion. Morrisons Cellar have just launched a great offer on all their wines and Champagnes: 25% off all orders over £100. This offer applies to all wines and Champagnes, all customers and doesn’t require any voucher code as it is automatically applied at checkout. Don’t forget that the minimum order for Morrisons is 1 case so you’ll have to purchase multiples of 6 bottles. You can then buy cases of…
Portugal
Portuguese wines have a long heritage and tradition in the UK, but with the exception of Port, they have been very difficult to market in the UK. Portugal has less than 1% share of a very crowded wine market in the UK, yet produces some of the highest quality, most exciting, and best value red wines in the world. Portugal consistently punches above its weight in wine competitions, winning more golds proportionately than almost any other country. Yet, there is still little recognition for these…
Mateus Rose
Mateus Rose – one of the first real wine brands, and a great marketing success story in the 1980s. Few people who were alive in the late 80s can fail to have missed the unique bottle shape and label, often seen in its converted state, as a table lamp! Back in the 80s, Mateus Rose captured the right mood, and helped make wine fun. Its frothy pink, slightly sweet style, appealed to wine drinking novices, and made wine unstuffy. In its heyday, Mateus Rose accounted for 40% of all Portuguese wine…
Without a doubt the red grape star of New Zealand, this temperamental red grape, initially from Burgundy, needs a cool climate and a gentle hand, and New Zealand winemakers and growers have captured this, and are producing some of the most outstanding Pinot Noirs in the world, ranging from the full, rich, spicy styles of Martinborough, to the complex, restrained, perfumed, elegant wines of Central Otago, the new home for Pinot Noir in the southern hemisphere. Elegant and perfumed, these wines…
Luis Felipe Edwards
Situated in the Chilean Colchagua Valley, Luis Felipe Edwards Wines was created in 1976 when Luis Felipe Edwards Sr purchased the Fundo San José de Puquillay estate. In 1995, he launched his first vintage, Luis Felipe Edwards Cabernet Sauvignon 1994, on the international market. Today, Luis Felipe Edwards Wines is one of the largest 100% family-owned wine companies in Chile. It produces more than 25 million litres of wine and exports to more than 60 countries.
The king of grapes in the Douro, Portugal, produces intense, fragrant, sumptuous dry reds, as well as being the dominant grape variety in Port. The wines are powerful, yet with a silky, velvety, violet and fig-infused fragrance and flavour. Taut, stylish, and structured in the Dao, the wines are equally structured, but can occasionally have a tendency to harshness and heavy tannins, and perceptively less rounded, than many of their Douro counterparts. Tinto Roriz and Touriga Francesca are the…
Loureiro - Vinho Verde
A light skinned, high acid, low alcohol producing grape, which is one of the main components of Vinho Verde. The addition of carbon dioxide gives these wines freshness, spritz, and liveliness. These wines are great aperitif wines, good for picnics, and delicious with salads, a bowl of fruit, or simply grilled seafood. Authentic Vinho Verde is bone dry, and refreshing, however a number of brands on the UK market have been sweetened, and are therefore better drunk on their own, or with lightly…
Alentejo
This is without doubt, one of the most exciting wine regions in Portugal today. A vast area of plains, and undulating hills, it is a hot, dry, arid, region, sparsely populated, yet now producing some of the most modern and innovative Portuguese wines of all, which are constantly winning medals in international wine competitions. It used to be a very poor area, where quality didn’t matter, be it wine, or produce, it was a region focussed on wheat production. Nowadays, it’s at the forefront of…
Dao
Dao
Just south of the Douro, lies the very traditional and well established region of Dao, probably the region for which Portuguese red wines were most famous 20 years ago. It’s an area which is quite protected by mountains, and has a temperate climate. The vineyards are up on the slate and granite slopes, and benefit from this protected environment, with lots of sunshine to ripen the high tannin grapes, but cold nights to elongate the growing process. Whilst the Douro has been forward thinking in…
What is a fine wine?
Fine wine is a term frequently used by wine experts and wine consumers alike, but what does it actually mean, and which wines does it apply to? The term ‘fine wine’ has no exact, or defined meaning, and can be viewed as subjective. Does it mean ‘fine’, as in ‘good and worth drinking’, as opposed to a poor wine, or does it mean a wine which occupies a far more elevated status and is revered and prized. Is it defined by its price, by where it’s made, from which grapes it’s made, or for how long…
Why Does Vintage Matter?
Does the vintage matter? The age-old question that I’m asked time and time again. There’s no simple answer, and there is a lot of unnecessary pontificating about vintages, which has no relevance to the average wine drinker. Discussions about vintages are made wisely by those informed and sufficiently knowledgeable, but very unwisely by many who just look to impress. Firstly, let’s dispel one of the commonly held myths – ‘vintage’ doesn’t refer to how special the wine is, it refers to the year…
Rose Wine - It's Not Just For Summer!
I’ve always been a fan of drinking Rose wines all year round – I don’t think they are just for Summer, I think they are terrific food wines, which wine drinkers just need to remember a little bit more through the winter months; in fact my top choices for spicy Indian dishes are invariably New World Rose wines. But of course, it’s at the height of Summer that these wines really come into their own, either to quench our thirst in the heat, or to conjur up visions of sunny beach days, to help…
Decanter World Wine Awards 2013: Do Wine Medals Really Matter?
Last night, at a glittering awards ceremony at London’s Royal Opera House, the Decanter World Wine Awards celebrated its 10th anniversary and announced its top awards; having revealed the medal winners from this year’s competition back in May, the evening revealed the top international trophies, celebrating the very top wines of the competition, together with the awards for the best retailers and wine buying teams in the UK. The results of the international trophies, recognising the absolute…
Decanter World Wine Awards
Curated by Decanter magazine, the Decanter World Wines Awards (DWWA) was launched in 2004, and is celebrating 11 years as the world’s leading wine competition. In 2014, over 15,000 wines were entered into the DWWA and 10,455 medals were awarded. This year, an impressive 15,928 wines from 48 countries around the world were tasted and 11,153 amongst them received a medal. Wines are organised for tasting by country, region, colour, grape, style, vintage, and price, to ensure that wines are judged…
Bring Me Sunshine
There was a term coined by the Australians for their particular style of wine that burst onto the global wine scene back in the 1980’s: sunshine in a glass. After years of complicated labels that often required a code-breaker to decipher what it was that you were drinking, wines from the New World changed all that by simply putting the name of the grape variety on the front label. Indeed, it so revolutionised the wine market in this country that wines from Australia and the U.S. now outsell…
Best Wine With A BBQ
The current heatwave shows no sign of abating, and its fascinating to watch the change in lifestyle that this weather seems to bring to all of us. There’s a distinctly Mediterranean vibe in the air, and relaxed, smiling people on the streets, and in bars or restaurants, as Alfresco eating takes over. Mealtimes have moved to the garden, and with that, a chilled out approach to cooking, and eating, with supermarkets working overtime to keep the salads and barbecue sections of their stores…
Wine Styles - What's Hot & What's Not
Take that classic question – what type of wine do you like? Asked so often, of so many people. The majority of wine drinkers struggle to answer, and therein lies one of the key issues, which highlights the fact that most of you know what you like, play safe, don’t know how to describe what you like, and fear the risk of trying something new. After all wine is, to most, a very confusing subject, not made any easier by the swathes of labels, bottles and names seen both in supermarkets and…
Primitivo
For decades, if not centuries, Primitivo has been the main red grape variety used to produce high volumes of southern Italian red. However, its history is far more fascinating than that. A few years ago, it was claimed that California’s own red grape, Zinfandel, on which they stake much pride, was in fact, the Italian Primitivo. Amidst lots of excitement and some perturbation from the Californians, further research was undertaken, and it emerged, in recent years, that both Primitivo and…
Stowells
Stowells presents a very interesting and contrasting picture in terms of its sales and positioning in the UK. One of the longest established wine brands, it led the field for years, during the 80s and early 90s, with its easy to select, reassuring range of wines, from all over the world. Today, it has disappeared almost entirely from the retail side of the business – it is never seen in supermarkets, and only spasmodically in convenience stores. It no longer features in the UK’s top 20 wine…
Kumala
Kumala was the first South African brand to put the country on the map, in the UK, in terms of approachable and affordable wine styles. It’s now the 12th largest brand in the UK, and the second largest South African brand. Created in the early nineties, by a family company, it catapulted South African wine onto firstly the UK, and then the international scene, with a wide range of still and sparkling wines. South Africa is now the 5th in the leader board of sales by country in the UK, and…
Fairtrade
Fairtrade wines are wines that work within the ethics of the Fairtrade organisation, and have been certified as such by the Fairtrade foundation. The Fairtrade Foundation’s mission is to work with businesses, community groups and individuals to improve the trading position of producer organisations in impoverished countries and to deliver sustainable livelihoods for farmers, workers and their communities. Fairtrade products are now part of our daily lives, with tea and coffee being the most…
How To Store Wine & How Long To Keep It?
The vast majority of wine bought in off licences and supermarkets is drunk within a week of purchase, with a high proportion consumed within 24 hours, so for most wine buyers, storing wine isn’t really an issue! However, here are a few storage tips: If you are storing small quantities of wine in the house, or the kitchen, keep the bottles on their sides, so that the corks don’t dry out, and keep away from radiators. This is one of the biggest problems with supermarket wines – many of them won’t…
Calvet
Calvet is a traditional Bordeaux company, which has been in existence for almost 2 centuries, and is one of the few that has weathered the testing times, that French wines have been through over the last few decades. Initially known purely for its traditional clarets, the Calvet brand, under new ownership, has expanded its portfolio across a number of French regions, and has focussed on a more modern approach, and move towards labelling using varietal names. Despite the fact that France has lost…
Black Tower
Black Tower is one of the few top wine brands of the 80s, which has stayed the test of time, and still has a presence and place on supermarket shelves across the country. Once, one of the very biggest wine brands in the world, and especially the UK, in the days when sales of German wine dominated, it has managed to undergo make overs and facelifts across the years, in a way that only a couple of other brands from the wine revolutionary 80s, have done – one other such wine is Mateus Rose. Britain…
Black Stump
Black Stump is the name given to a highly successful range of wines, developed by, and available exclusively through Laithwaite's and Direct Wines online. This brand was created a decade ago and produced by John Casella of the Casella winery, one of the largest producers in Australia. Ten years on, it has created waves with its high popularity and loyal following, making it one of the top wines on the Laithwaite's selection. The brand, Black Stump, was created 10 years ago, in a collaboration…
Cono Sur
Cono Sur is the second biggest Chilean wine brand in the UK, and the largest in terms of wine production in Chile, producing 19% of all Chilean wine produced. It is owned by Concha Y Toro, who also own the brand leading Casillero del Diablo, but the brand is managed separately, and has its own identity. Cono Sur was one of the earliest brands into the UK market, and has founded its principles on environmentally friendly, and sustainable wine production. Created in 1993, it is a young brand…
Codorniu
Although not the biggest brand in the UK, Codorniu is the biggest Cava producer in the world, and one of the very oldest, with a company history, dating back over 450 years, to 1551. Today the company is at the forefront of technology and runs massive production facilities, for wines, which are exported the world over. The company produces over 60 million bottles of Cava annually. The Codorniu heritage dates back to the 16th century, but came to prominence in the late 17th century, when Anna de…
Ogio
Ogio is simply a phenomenal marketing success story, in a world where wine brands are struggling for attention and presence. It is a range of Italian wines, which has come from nowhere, to become the 2nd largest wine brand in Italy, and by far the largest wine brand in the UK. Ogio is a brand that is exclusive, in the UK, to the nation’s largest supermarket, and it is this distribution power, and customer focussed sales and pricing strategy, that has driven it to massive success, initially in…
Sauternes is a village about 40km south of Bordeaux, near the town of Langon, which produces exclusively sweet white dessert wines. Its location , far south in the Bordeaux region, nestled in southernly Graves, enjoys a unique microclimate, due partly to its proximity to the main rivers of the region, and its relatively flat location – hot summer days, with cool nights, and damp, cool breezes encourage the development of ‘noble rot’ ( botrytis cinerea) on the grapes. Sauternes wines can only…
The most southern of the Haut- Medoc communes, and the one with the lightest, most gravelly soil – the wines can be sublimely elegant, refined, and the most fragrant of all in Bordeaux, and hold as their own the Premier Cru , world famous Chateau Margaux. However this is also a region, which has chateaux and estates that rest on their laurels, and need to upgrade their quality, rather than rely on the simple fact of the 1855 classification, to command their often over-inflated prices. Margaux…
Whilst St Julien does not boast a First Growth wine, it is universally acclaimed, as producing, some of the most elegant, supple and stylish wines of the Haut – Medoc; wines, that have a degree of delicacy and subtlety; wines that age gloriously, with a balance of elegance and power, and are less ‘full-on’ than the neighbouring Pauillac commune. St Julien wines also offer some of the very best value , at the top end of the Bordeaux scale. St Julien is home to some of the best…
Pauillac is a name that commands respect across the wine world, and is arguably, the most acclaimed, and prestigious area within Bordeaux, home to no less than 3 of the 5 first growth (premier cru classe wines) – the world famous names of Chateau Lafite, Chateau Latour and Chateau Mouton-Rothschild, as designated in the famous 1855 classification of Bordeaux, with Mouton-Rothschild being added in 1973. Cabernet Sauvignon reigns supreme here, at home on the gravelly soils, and dominates the…
Saint Estephe is at the north of the Haut Medoc, and is, maybe unfairly, perceived as the least famous, and the least illustrious of the big four Medoc communes. It is further away from the river Garonne, and therefore benefits less from the iconic gravel soils of the area; here the soil is heavier, and more clay based. The vines are slower to mature, and have high acidity, which in the past has led to the wines being either very tight and tannic, or simply severe and gutsy, maybe lacking the…
These are the less known and much – underrated sub classifications of the Haut Medoc. They lie further away from the Gironde estuary, and therefore do no benefit from the unique terroir, which gives the top areas of Bordeaux their complexity and exclusivity. These areas lie south of Pauillac, but north of Margaux, but also house several famous Chateaux, close to the village of Poujeaux, namely Chateau Chasse-Spleen. Whilst still Cabernet Sauvignon dominant, they have a slightly higher…
The Haut Medoc lies to the South of the Medoc overall area, beginning just north of Saint-Estephe and finishing close to the outskirts of the city of Bordeaux. It covers over 2 thirds of the entire Medoc appellation, and is without doubt, the most famous wine area in the world, covering more fine wine chateaux and appellations by hectare, than any other wine region in the world. The appellation Haut Medoc applies to any wine that is produced from grapes grown in this area. Cabernet Sauvignon…
Fronsac, also on the Right Bank, produces heftier, weightier wines than Pomerol and Saint-Emilion. Lying just west of Saint-Emilion, it is not dissimilar in aspect, but the soils have more limestone, and are more resistant to heat. The merlot is the predominant grape here, often blended with Cabernet Franc – the soils are not very suitable for the Cabernet Sauvignon to ripen. It is one of the few areas, where Malbec is also regularly used in the blend. Historically the wines were burlier and…
Arguably, the best known Bordeaux wine region in the world, and one of the most scenic. The town of Saint-Emilion is one of the most beautiful, historic and evocative in the region of Bordeaux, far more picturesque than anything that its left Bank neighbour Haut-Medoc can offer, with its Roman history, cobbled streets, and Medieval feel. It’s a far larger region than the Medoc, and Saint-Emilion covers over 13,000 acres ( compared to Pauillac’s 3000 acres). The soil type is totally different…
This has to be the most exclusive patch of land in the wine world! A small and prestige region on the Right Bank, it covers less than 2000 acres of vineyards, and lies outside any form of classification such as the Medoc or Saint-Emilion ones, yet many of its wines have reached stellar status, and command higher prices than the top Medoc wines – chateau Petrus and Chateau Le Pin are such examples. The best vineyards in Pomerol are in the eastern section of the small area, where they meet…
How To Spot Bad Wine
What happens when you open a bottle of wine, have a glass and vow never to buy it again? Is it just the taste you don’t like, or is there a sneaky suspicion that there’s something not quite right about it, but you don’t know what. Similarly, I’m sure there have been occasions when you’ve bought a bottle of your favourite wine, only to find out that it didn’t really taste the same as how you remembered it. That’s often because there is something wrong with the bottle; this is an area which…
English Wine In 2013
English Wine Week 2013, marks a week of celebration of our homegrown, award winning wines, which now compete with confidence on the world stage, in terms of wine competitions, and awards. Organised by the English Wine Producers Association, which represents over 75% of the UK’s total wine production, restaurants, supermarkets and wine shops throughout the country are using this national promotion, to let their customers know more about English wines, and promote awareness and confidence in…
The Ultimate Guide To Wine For Your Wedding
Choosing the right wines for your wedding can be one of the more stressful items on the wedding ‘to do’ list; generally the happy couple have a good idea about venue, food, and theme, but, frequently, the organisation comes to a stuttering halt, when the subject of the wine comes up. I say this with the experience of years of practice, with friends calling to ask advice for the planning of their big day. In fact, this has happened to me very recently; my stepson is marrying, a lovely, highly…
Mendoza produces over two thirds of the total production in Argentina, and is a large area, nestled in the shadow of the mighty Mont Aconcagua, one of the Andean peaks. It is situated in the shadow of the Andes, just over the border from Chile. At the turn of the 21st century, the acreage of Mendoza’s vineyards, was more than the entirety of Australia and New Zealand combined, which helps give some indication of scale; and also provides insight into the relatively low exports and sales to this…
Argentina
Argentina is a country of great excitement and interest, as far as wine is concerned. With an almost perfect climate and location, and a fascinating breadth of grape varieties producing great quality wine, it’s a wonderful country for wine production, but has not yet fallen on its feet in the UK market. Despite all efforts, and some high profile PR activity, Argentine wine sales still only account for 1% of the market, considerably behind New Zealand, and one eighth of the Chilean wine market…
Brown Brothers
Brown Brothers is one of the most established Australian wineries in the UK, having made its mark in the early days of the Australian wine revolution. Founded back in 1885, the company has a fascinating history, and has carved an important place within the scope of the Australian wine phenomenon. With vineyards and wineries across all major wine producing regions of Australia, Brown Brothers is maybe most famous for having the largest selection of grape varieties planted, of any of the…
How To Taste Wine
Well, just like food, the more we smell and savour, the more enjoyment we will get out of it. If we wolf down a plate of carefully prepared food, which includes herbs, spices and other flavourings, mixed with a variety of textures of meat and vegetables, we don’t really enjoy the contribution that each element gives to the dish; fish steamed with ginger and lemongrass, meat braised with cinnamon and orange, creamy pannacotta with a lively passion fruit coulis – we enjoy a huge variety of…
Cristal
Louis Roederer Cristal – where to start? One of the most sought-after Champagnes in the world; the Champagne of kings, A list actors, hip hop and rappers alike, including P Diddy, Jay-Z; the danger is that the brand has become a status symbol, purchased for its price and rarity, rather than for its inherent quality. However, true lovers of Champagne can rest assured that the brand lives up to its superstar status in terms of quality delivery. Louis Roederer Cristal was first created in 1876 for…
Errazuriz wines like to describe themselves as the ‘Premier Family Wine estate of Chile’. One of the top Chilean wine brands in the UK, Errazuriz was established in 1870, and is still run by the family, with world renowned winemaker Eduardo Chadwick, flying the flag for the 6th generation. Errazuriz own vineyards in four different regions, but their headquarters and main winery is where the company was first established, in the Aconcagua region, 100km north of Santiago. Errazuriz is widely…
Beaujolais Wine
The Beaujolais has had a very checkered career over the last few decades. Situated in eastern France, just south of the main Burgundy region, it came to fame in the 1970s, when the craze for Beaujolais Nouveau hit first Paris, and then the UK and the US. Its fame was also it’s downfall, as the wave of popularity waned at the turn of the century, and in 2001, producers were forced to destroy thousands of litres, due to collapsed sales. Add to this other scandals of illegal blending, and…
Whether you are a quaffing expert or just starting your journey learning about wine, our wine basics pages have been set out to give an overview of the world of wine. Written by our top wine expert Angela Mount, the top tips range from just what people are looking for when they taste wine all the way to best wines to buy at certain budgets. Feel free to comment and let us know if you have any wine questions that need answering via our Contact us page.
Jacobs Creek
The Australian wine brand, that can claim to have started the craze for Australian wine in the UK, is one of the most recognised in the world. Launched in the late 80s, it paved the way for a myriad different brands, and put Australian wine on the map, with the result that Australian wines now account for 20% of wine sales in the UK, putting them in the number 1 position. There has been a lot of criticism of wine brands by wine experts and writers, but Jacobs Creek, is recognised, and…
Tasmania lies 240km south off the coast of Victoria, an island in the midst of a vast ocean, with New Zealand to the east. It has a wet, windy climate, and is largely covered in rainforest. Although vines were planted even before those of South Australia, they disappeared and vines were not replanted until the 1960s. It’s a mountainous island, and the smallest of the Australian states. There are numerous mountain ranges, and the topography is often more akin to New Zealand, than Australia, as…
Undoubtedly the area with the highest concentration of fine wine producers in the whole of Australia. Situated south of Perth, on the very edge of the Indian Ocean, but close to where it meets the colder Southern Ocean, the area was only discovered in the 1960s as a region of massive potential in terms of quality wine production, with immediate comparisons to Bordeaux, both for its climate, but also topography and soil conditions. The area is most famous for its cool, crisp Semillon/Sauvignon…
The vineyards of Western Australia are clustered in the south western corner of this huge region, south of Perth. This area has a unique climate, far cooler than all the other, more eastern wine regions of Australia, and has often been compared to Bordeaux in terms of climate. A small region, comparatively in terms of production, it boasts a huge number of small wineries, and produces a high percentage of the country’s top quality wines. It is arguably, the most premium wine producing region of…
Situated just north of Melbourne, and another very cool climate region, albeit one of the most traditional. It was one of the earliest regions planted, but the wines did not really come to prominence until the 1970s, when producers started to plant Chardonnay and Pinot Noir amongt other grapes, and realised , that with the high altitude (hills of 500m), and colder weather, and thus longer growing seasons, the area was perfect for the production of quality sparkling wines, made in the traditional…