September 13, 2013 10:32 am | Posted by Del

Chablis Wines from Domaine Moreau

Domaines Louise Moreau was born from the passion of a family living in Chablis since 1814. As early as the late 19th century, their love for great wines led to the purchase of plots in Grands Crus and Premiers Crus.

Today they are proprietor of parcels in five of the Grands Crus and own individual vineyards within the appellations of Petit Chablis, Chablis and Premiers Crus. Most of the vineyards are managed using organic principles working in harmony with the environment.

The most prestigious of its wines is the monopole Chablis Grand Cru Clos des Hospices dans Les Clos, which was acquired by the Moreau family in 1904.

Louis Moreau, who has been head of the domaine since 1994, produces wines with a unique style, combining minerality, fineness, elegance and purity.

We have recently listed the following wines from Domaine Moreau -  Petit Chablis, Chablis, Chablis 1er Cru Vaulignot and Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos








Happy Chablis Days


WRITTEN BY: Del   (click for further articles)



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Hawkshead Wines from Central Otago in New Zealand

August 3, 2013 11:53 am | Posted by Del

Hawkshead Vineyard is located on the road between Queenstown and Cromwell in the Gibbston “Valley of Wines” in the heart of Central Otago, New Zealands southernmost wine growing region, known for its high quality Pinot Noir Wines. The Gibbston Valley is 20 minutes drive from Queenstown, the lifestyle and adventure capital of New zealand.

Vines have been grown in the Gibbston Valley, Central Otago since 1976. It was one of the areas in the region that Italian based viticulturist Romeo Braggato first predicted, in 1895, to be of great potential for the production of Pinot Noir. After experimentation in many different microclimates in the region with different grape varieties, it was found the alluvial soils of the Gibbston Valley together with the Pinot Noir grape produced some of New Zealand’s finest Pinot Noir.

The original land use in the valley was extensive merino sheep farming and the Hawkshead Vineyard was once part of the large Waitiri Sheep Station. Waitiri Station had farmed the land since the early 1950′s and saw the potential for Viticulture, spending years recording information on climate and soil from their farm. As the land in the Gibbston Valley was developed for viticulture Denis Marshall was fortunate to be able to obtain a most suitable block in 1995 which was to become the Hawkshead Vineyard. The pinot noir grapes are planted on gentle north facing slopes to maximise the full year round sun.

In November 2009 Hawkshead Vineyard became a fully Accredited Vineyard under the Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand Programme. This was a stepping stone and from 2009 all their Pinot Noir has been grown organically.

Pinot Gris 2012 

2011 hh pg_thumb pinotgris hawks

Pinot Noir 2010

2010 hh pn mediumpinot noir hawks




Happy Wines from Otago Days


WRITTEN BY: Del   (click for further articles)



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Beaujolais Cru Wine – Saint-Amour Wine

February 22, 2013 3:00 pm | Posted by Del

Saint-Amour is the most northerly of the ten Beaujolais Cru areas and is one of the region’s top rated vineyards. Saint-Amour’s granitic clay and schist soils are often credited with the particular  wine style produced from the vines here. These range from brightly coloured, fruity and floral examples through to fuller-bodied, more spicy and richly complex wines that can be aged for four to five years.

A large quantity of white Beaujolais Blanc is also made from Saint-Amour’s vineyards, mostly from Chardonnay and Aligote grapes.

The wines of Beaujolais Cru are both different in style and of a higher quality than is generally associated with the region and most producers move away from overt references to the generic title and prefer instead to use the name of a particular cru.

We have recently selected these wines from Domaine Du Penlois based in Lancie, Beaujolais

  St Amour, Les Vins du PenloisSt Amour

  A fuller bodied, more spicy and richly complex style with lovely floral fruit

Domaine do Penlois Beaujolais 2011Beaujolais Blanc, Chardonnay du Chatelard

A pale straw colour with almond and grapefruit aromas

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Celebrate Burns Night

January 20, 2013 4:58 pm | Posted by Del

Celebrate Burns Night with Bobbie Burns Shiraz, Campbells Wines, Rutherglen, Australia

Burn’s Night celebrates the life and works of the poet Robert Burns, born January 25, 1759 as well as Scottish culture in general. John Campbell sailed from St Andrews, Scotland in 1857 to Rutherglen, Australia in search of gold. He acquired land adjoining the Bobbie Burns Gold Seam and established his Bobbie Burns Vineyard,Successive Campbell generations of this adventurous Scot have continued his tradition of premium winemaking on this original vineyard. We think Bobbie Burns Shiraz 2010 is a worthy wine to celebrate Burns Night this Friday 25 January 2013.

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Wines of Mallorca…Vinyes Mortitx

October 21, 2012 4:36 pm | Posted by Graham D

MALLORCA….Always Beautiful Sandy Beaches with lots of Sunshine and now Wonderfully Delicious Wines

With regard to great holidays in the sun, Mallorca is well known all around the world, but with regards to Mallorcan wines outside this beautiful island, they are not so well known. Maybe the reason for their limited availability outside the island is that only a dozen or so years ago most of the red wines produced were boardering on the harsh side and lacking finesse, while the white wines were mainly dry, thin and too acidic, only being enjoyed by the locals with most tourists sticking to beer, Menorcan gin and of course jugs of fruit filled sangria.

Although the wine making state of affairs has dramatically changed for the better in recent years, even so, the wines are sadly still relatively unknown outside the Ballearic Islands. There are many vineyards large and small around Mallorca with about twenty now producing stunning red and white wines along with some very decent rose, wines of such quality would command at least double the price if they were produced in Rioja or Ribera del Duero. Many of these vineyards I have visited over the past four to five years and can truly testify to the huge changes made to both facilities and the processing of wine e.g. modern stainless steel equipment and storage tanks, refrigeration and proper control of the fermentation temperature, automatic irrigation systems, much experimenting and more use of oak barrels for maturing wines and most importantly greatly increased planting and quality spacing of the more popular grape varities like cabernet sauvignon, syrah, merlot, chardonnay, viognier and malvasia and these varities are now producing many deliciously tasting varietal wines as well as carefully crafted blends.

Mallorca is perceived by most visitors to be an island in the sun, with many fine and interesting coastal resorts and beautiful golden beaches with crystal clear and seductively tainted azure waters and then to be arid,dry and uninteresting further inland where even today very few venture. For certain that is not the case, many parts of the central plain are extremely fertile, lush with ever ending fields of natures flowers, sweet smelling herbs and tiny leaved shrubs. Follow the ever winding narrow roads lined either side with wild poppys and you will also come upon acres and acres of fields of deep red soil producing each year successions of crops like strawberries, artichokes, potatos and green salads. Further on you could find huge orchards ripe with growing peaches, nectarines, oranges, lemons, almonds and we must not forget to mention thousands and thousands of olive trees. The whole island is a paradise, sadly to so few visitors.

The centre of the island around Inca and Manacor (note, Nadal territory ) is where the majority of Mallorcan vineyards are located, although you can find small industrious and successful growers around other parts of the island. Traditionally the grape of the island has and still is Monastrell, on its own it simply does not produce good red wines, but blended with other varities, the results can be simply outstanding.

imagen2presentacion3Out of the many first class vineyards in Mallorca our favourite has to be MORTITX, a sleeping beauty and that is why we import, retail and wholesale six of their wonderfully complex, deep and rounded wines. Mortitx is located in the quiet North East of Mallorca a few kilometors from Pollensa on the steep rising road from Pollensa to Soller up in a hidden valley within the Tramontana mountain range. An awsome and captivating location with panoramic views looking down on to the enormous and attractive bays of Pollensa and Alcudia. Visitors are most welcome to taste and buy wines at the winery whose location is breathtakingly sited below rugged and steep pinky mauve coloured mountains with eagles and kites souring high above the sun baked pine trees and cliff tops and all around you take in the inviting scent of wild rosemary, thyme and juniper. This most appealing winery is owned by a number of private shareholders,many of whom own hotels and fine restaurants on the island and make available these exceptional Mortitx wines for sale in their own establishments.

From this magnificent vineyard we list the following wines:

Mortitx Negre Anyada Tinto

 Mortitx Rodal Pla Tinto

Mortitx Syrah

Mortitx L’u Tinto

Mortitx Rosat

 Mortitx Blanc

Mortitx Dolce de Gel





These wines can be purchased via our website or by visiting our Retail Outlet near Southampton

For Food Matches with the Mortitx Wines please check on which takes you to our websites specialist section on ” Matching Wines with Foods” then just type in the name of the wine in the box located under “TYPE IN WINE”.

Happy Mallorcan Days

Updated 23 September 2010

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Foods for the Summer Months

July 29, 2012 6:42 pm | Posted by Graham D

(continuation from blog  “ Food and Wine pairing”  dated 7 July 2012)

INTRODUCTION:—--this blog and the many more following will examine the pleasurable and often complex relationship between good food and wine, with the ultimate aim to assist our many discerning customers evolve the convivial bonding of good food and wine.

FOOD BEING FEATURED:—–FOODS FOR THE SUMMER MONTHS - that can be enjoyed either hot, warm or cold.
A few examples of alfresco dishes would be : Quiche Lorraine, Onion and Tomato Flan, Stuffed Big Beef  Tomatoes, Chicken and Savoury Pies , Mushroom and Ham Tarts, Meat Loaves, Tapas style dishes and Picnic food.
(See a previous Blog for Pairing Summer Barbeque foods with Wine)

CHALLENGES:—–Another interesting and challenging bridge to cross, but if we group the foods into categories that represent similarity in strength of taste and textures, we then strike a good chance of pleasing most people :

- foods with an egg influence and creamy textures such as quiches and savoury tarts
- vegetable based dishes including green salads
- cold meat dishes with pickles and chutney
- cold seafood dishes including smoked salmon, smoked mackerel, soused herring and prawn/lobster cocktail


- COLD SEAFOOD DISHES - a sparkling wine such as Saumur Brut Ackerman served as cold as possible would be a perfect match. For white wine lovers, another recommendation that would be most appealing is a crisp and dry Sauvignon Blanc from a vineyard of high standing in both hemispheres of the world.

- VEGETABLES AND SALADS - here a Pinot Grigio would work well or even a Frascati from the Lazio region of Italy. The Italians eat huge amounts of vegetables in the summer months, hence two Italian wines

- EGG BASED DISHES - try a creamy style Chardonnay from Simon Hackett Wines in McLaren Valley, Australia which matches well with this array of foods. If you prefer a wine with a little texture and body then check out a fine Viognier from Babich Vineyard in New Zealand.

- COLD MEAT DISHES - lots of scope although my preference would be light bodied reds such as Fleurie from Domaine du Penlois  or  Pinot Noir from  Hunter’s Vineyard in Marlborough, New Zealand . Either wine will stand alone for its own enjoyment and will not in any way diminish the taste and flavours of the dishes in question.

MAIN DIRECTORY:—--click on THE MARRIAGE OF FOOD AND WINE to access our quick search facility to locate hundreds of other food/wine/food pairing options, including hors-d’oeuvres, starters, soups, main courses and desserts. Also view GREAT FRIENDS – CHEESE AND WINE for cheese and wine pairing.



Graham D

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Hayman’s London Dry Gin

July 8, 2012 2:50 pm | Posted by Del


haymans-london-dry-ginThe original company of Haymans Distillers was founded in the 1800s by James Burrough, the great grandfather of the current Chairman, Christopher Hayman. James Burrough created the world renowned Beefeater Gin. Although Beefeater Gin and James Burrough Limited were sold to Whitbread in 1987, the Hayman family retained part of the business and continued the tradition of distilling and blending Gin and other white spirits.

BOTANICALS that make this fine gin – Christopher Hayman believes it is the careful and consistent balance of Juniper, Coriander, Orange and Lemon Peel which is vital in crafting a classic style of London Dry Gin. The Hayman’s Gin recipe consists of ten natural botanicals handpicked from around the world which creates a fresh crisp and fragrant flavour.

* The best Juniper provides the predominate flavour of Gin and is therefore the most essential ingredient.
* The finest Angelica Roots are harvested in France and give Gin its dry character.
* CorianderSeeds are imported from France which together with Liquorice gives Gin its complexity.
* Orris Root, sourced from Italy, has a scented flavour and is an essential part of the blend as it holds the other flavours together.
* Orange and Lemon Peel is sourced from Spain where the fruit is usually hand-peeled and left to dry in the Spanish sunshine to capture the oils and give Haymans London Dry Gin its crisp,balanced and unique flavour.

The important process of STEEPING and DISTILLATION

- Prior to the distillation process, the botanicals are steeped in the pot still for 24 hours which is the first part of the infusion process. After steeping, the gin undergoes the distillation process. During the distillation process, the still is heated at a gentle temperature so each botanical releases its flavour at a different stage of the process. The result is a premium London Dry Gin of consistently exceptional quality. Christopher believes Premium Gin should be created in a traditional Pot still to enable the flavours of the carefully selected botanicals to develop to their full potential and allow the Master Distiller to handcraft a uniquely flavoured premium gin with care and attention.

GIMLET- a highly recommended cocktail

* 2 shots of Hayman’s London Dry Gin
* 2 shots Roses Lime Cordial
* 1/2 shot water
Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a glass.


Graham D

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Sloe Gin

May 20, 2012 4:32 pm | Posted by Del

Sloe Gin is a fine gin spirit or liqueur flavoured with sloe (blackthorn) berries, which are a small fruit relative of the plum. Sloe gin has an alcohol content between 15 and 30 percent by volume and is produced by many small boutique wineries and distillers. The traditional way of making sloe gin is to infuse gin with the berries, sugar is required to ensure the sloe juices are extracted from the fruit. Almond or cinnamon flavouring is sometimes also added. Many commercial sloe gins today are made by flavouring less expensive neutral grain spirits, and produce a fruit cordial effect, although a number of long-established, reputable manufacturers still use the traditional method.

To make Sloe Gin, the sloe berries must be ripe. In the Northern Hemisphere, they were traditionally picked in late October or early November after the first frost of the winter. Each berry is pricked and a vat or barrel is part filled with the pricked berries, then the vat or barrel is filled with gin and sugar, adding a few cloves and a small stick of cinnamon. The vat or barrel is sealed and mixed several times by turning, then stored in a cool, dark place. It is usually mixed by turning every day for the first two weeks, then each week, until at least three months have passed. The gin will now be a deep ruby red. The liqueur is poured off and the berries and spices discarded.

Some great examples of Sloe Gins and Liqueurs

sloegin-foxSloe Gin Liqueur, Foxdenton Estate, Buckinghamshiresloe-gin-bg

Sloe Gin Liqueur, Bramble & Gage, Gloucestershire

Sloe Gin Liqueur, Sloemotion, North Yorkshiresloegin

Sloe Gin Liqueur, Moniack Castle, Highland Wineries

sloeginslcSloe Gin Liqueur, Scottish Liqueur Centre

Sloe Gin Reserve Liqueur, Lyme Bay Winery, Devon sloe-reserve2

Sloe Gin Liqueur, Gordons, London

sipsmith-sloeSloe Gin Liqueur, Sipsmith, London

Sloe Gin Liqueur, Plymouth, Devon

 Sloe Gin Liqueur, Condessa, Isle of Anglesey

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Bodegas Williams & Humbert Sherries

March 14, 2012 1:09 pm | Posted by Del

Bodegas Williams & Humbert

The history of Bodegas Williams & Humbert goes back nearly 130 years. They participated in the creation of the Jerez-Xeres-Brandy Quality Demarcation and are now considered to be one of the world’s most prestigious wine producers.

The winery was founded in 1877 by Sir Alexander Williams, a great admirer and connoisseur of sherry products and Arthur Humbert, a specialist in international relations. Since then they have preserved part of the original wines and brandies (soleras) in high quality oak casks. These soleras are the base of the development and ageing of every sherry and brandy produced at Bodegas Williams & Humbert.

The following are summaries and tasting notes of many of the Sherries that Williams & Humbert are world famous for :


img_7439This is a very dry Fino Sherry produced from Palomino grapes. Bud musts from the best vineyards undergo cold, still fermentation at 22C. Then they go through early filtering and classification by quality. The best wine distillations are fortified at 15c to be racked in clean casks. They are then put into the traditional system of dynamic ageing employed in Jerez – Criaderas y Soleras- in the 6th criadera cask, where the biological ageing under a layer of yeast takes place in the traditional oak casks, preferably of American oak. The ageing is minimum five years while the wine passes from one criadera to another until it reaches the solera, from which it is drawn out for consumption.

Tasting Notes : A wine of brilliant, pale gold colours. Intense, complex aromas reminiscent of the yeast layer with a hint of almond. Delicate yet full-bodied, with character and elegance. A long aftertaste and nose.

Suggestions with Food : Ideal for aperitifs accompanied by a high quality cheese, ham and seafood dishes. Also excellent with almonds.


img_7437This a blended Oloroso or Medium Sherry produced from Palomino and Pedro Ximenez grapes. Bud musts undergo controlled fermentation at 28c and fortified with alcohol distilled from wine up to 19.5 degrees. Palomino and Pedro Ximenez are racked into clean casks while waiting to enter the Criaderas y Soleras system. Physical-chemical ageing through oxidation for at least six years, obtaining a slightly sweetened oloroso or medium sherry.

Tasting Notes: An amber-coloured wine of intense aromas suggesting dried nuts. Full bodied and balanced, with little acid and slightly sweet .

Suggestions with Food: It can be drunk neat or with ice. It is recommended as an aperitif or to accompany pasta and rice dishes.


canasta-cream_edited-1A sweet Oloroso or Cream Sherry produced from Palomino and Pedro Ximenez grapes. The bud musts undergo controlled fermentation and fortified at 19.5 degrees. An elegant blend of Palomino and Pedro Ximenez before entering the Criaderas y Soleras system for physical-chemical ageing through oxidation in oak casks. Aged for at least six years. A unique sweet Oloroso or “Cream” Sherry.

Tasting Notes: Sweet Oloroso. Mahogany colour and aromas of dried nuts with a hint of raisins and brown sugar. Smooth, velvety palate with warm alcohol flavours and a persistent aftertaste.

Suggestions for Food : It can be consumed very cold by itself and with desserts, or on ice as a refreshing early evening drink.


img_7441This is a very Sweet Oloroso or Cream Sherry produced from Palomino, Pedro Ximenez and Muscatel grapes. Bud musts undergo controlled fermentation and fortified at 19.5 degrees. Palomino, Pedro Ximenez and Muscatel are blended and racked into clean casks before entering the Criaderas y Solera system for physical-chemical ageing through oxidation in oak casks. Aged for at least four years.

Tasting Notes: Very sweet oloroso.Dark mahogany, almost ebony. On the nose, dried nuts and faint aroma of raisins, muscatel and toasted sugar. Smooth and velvety with a warm palate owing to its alcohol content. A long finish.

Suggestions for Food: It can be consumed very cold by itself and with desserts, or on ice as a refreshing long drink.


img_7443This a slightly sweetened Amontillado or “Medium Sweet” Sherry produced from Palomino and Pedro Ximenez grapes. The bud must undergoes controlled fermentation and fortified with alcohol distilled from wine at 28 degrees. Palomino and Pedro Ximenez are racked before entering the Criaderas y Soleras system for physical-chemical ageing through oxidation in oak casks. Aged for at least six years. A slightly sweetened oloroso, or “medium sweet” sherry.

Tasting Notes: Brillant amber. Intense aroma of dried nuts. Full bodied and balanced, with low acidity. Sweet and persistent.

Suggestions for Food: To be drunk neat or on ice. Ideal as an aperitif or with pasta and rice dishes.


dos-cortados-30yrs_edited-2This a dry Amontillado Sherry produced from Palomino grapes. Bud musts from the best vineyards undergo cold, still decanting and fermentation at 22c. Early filtering, classification by quality and fortified at 15 degrees with the best distilled wines to obtain the traditional racks. Put into the classical Jerez Criaderas y Soleras system of dynamic ageing at the 15th criadera, where the biological ageing takes place under a layer of yeast. Aged in traditional oak casks , preferably American for at least 8 years, after which it is transferred to the 6th criadera for an additional 22 years of natural ageing by oxidation until it reaches the solera. It is then removed for consumption.

Tasting Notes: Bright hues of very old gold and amber. Pungent, intense and complex on the nose, with a subtle note of  fino sherry and a hint of dried nuts and filbert. Dry with excellent acidity, a long, full bodied and elegant palate. A delightfully expressive and unforgettable finish.

Suggestions with Food: An excellent aperitif served with a fine cheese, ham or seafood dishes.


dos-cortados-20yrs_edited-1A fortified wine, this rare and peculiar dry Pale Cortado Sherry produced from Palomino grapes is halfway between an Amontillado and an Oloroso. Bud musts from the best vineyards undergo cold, still decanting and fermentation at 22c. Early filtration, classification by quality and then the must is fortified at 15degrees with the best distilled wines to obtain the traditional racks. Put into the Criaderas y Soleras system in fino sherry casks for biological ageing. Sporadically, circumstances cause the contents of some casks to behave differently than it is expected – they will not become fino sherry. These casks are “cut” (hence the term “cortado”) with one or two jugs of alcohol to form the base of the palo cortado solera system. The wine is then aged for 20 years until it reaches the solera.

Tasting Notes : Bright hues of very old gold and amber . Pungent, intense and complex on the nose, with a subtle note of filberts and dried fruits. Dry with excellent acidity, a long, full-bodied and elegant palate. An incredibly expressive and unforgettable finish. Sherry with an amontillado nose and an oloroso palate.

Suggestions with Food: Excellent as an aperitif for those long evenings or in short drinks with tapas.


dry-oloroso12yrs_edited-1This is a dry Oloroso produced from Palomino grapes. The bud musts undergo controlled fermentation at 28c, then fortified with distilled wine alcohol at up to 19.5degrees. The Palomino enters the racks before entering the Criaderas y Soleras system for physical-chemical ageing through oxidation in oak casks. It is aged for at least 12 years. This is a unique dry Oloroso.

Tasting Notes: Bright amber. Intense aromas characteristic of this type of wine and a hint of dried nuts and fruits. Dry, rich, with smooth tannins, it is luscious and balanced with a long finish.

Suggestions for Food: As an aperitif with mature cheese, at meals with red meats and even as an after-dinner drink.



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Traditional Wines from Bordeaux

February 2, 2012 1:54 pm | Posted by Del

Traditonal Wines from Bordeaux

In the heart of the beautiful Entre-Deux-Mers in the Bordeaux wine-producing region, near Creon, the vineyards of Chateau Haut Pougnan spread on the slopes of the right bank of the Garonne, superb clay-limestone soil and gravel.

The slopes are home to East and South vineyards of red wine grapes, the slopes West remain the domain of white wines.
The nature of the calcareius clay of these soils result in very fine wines with subtle bouquet.

The following grape varieties are utilised in the making of various wines on the estate. The red wines from Merlot (50%), Cabernet Sauvignon (40%) and Cabernet Franc (10%) reflects the triology of Bordeaux varietals.
For white wines, Sauvignon (70%), Semillion (25%) and Muscadelle (5%) give them a delicacy and a prestigious bouquet.

pougnan-pair Chateau Haut Pougnan 1er Cotes de Bordeaux Rouge, rich and fruity has a tanicity particulary well balanced. On a beautiful dress, this wine continues to please with its elegance and balance in the  mouth.

Chateau Haut Pougnan Blanc is of great finesse and has a remarkable bouquet. Sauvignon Blanc is perfect for seafood dishes, or at any time simply for pleasure .

White wines are ideal for drinking young but will store well for a number of years.
Red wines are aged a year in oak barrels and flourish at the end of three to five years. Great vintages mature harmoniously in the cellar with an ageing potential from eight to ten years.

Both wines can be drunk on their own, or will make a wonderful accomplement for an evening dinner.



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