Leon Stolarski Fine Wines
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New arrivals - latest additions to our list
Wines by grower - alphabetical
Languedoc Red Wine (AOC/AOP)
Languedoc Red Wine (IGP/VdP/VdT)
Languedoc White Wine
Roussillon Red Wine
Roussillon White Wine
South-West France Red Wine
South-West France White Wine
Provence Red Wine
Provence White Wine
Southern Rhone Red Wine
Southern Rhone White Wine
Burgundy Red Wine
Burgundy White Wine
Loire Red Wine
Loire White Wine
Rosé Wine
Sparkling and Sweet wines
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New arrivals
New arrivals - the latest additions to our list
Here, you can see at-a-glance the most recent additions to our list, be they new vintages from existing growers, or wines from growers completely new to us. This page is updated/refreshed on a regular basis, as and when new wines arrive. The wines below are all new for winter 2015 and spring 2016.

Domaine des Gauletteries Rouge 2013 Coteaux de Loir
Domaine des Gauletteries Rouge 2013 Coteaux de Loir
Vintage
2013

Region Coteaux du Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry red - light/medium bodied.
Grapes 70% Pineau d'Aunis, 10% Gamay, 10% Côt, 10% Cab F
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.0%
Food Grilled meats, duck, cold cuts, goat's cheese
Next day
Drinks very well next day
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years

The nose is a riot of bright red summer fruits and white pepper, with hints of forest floor and citrus, all of which carry through on the palate - tangy, sweet-sour, with red cherry skin flavours providing the sour and fruits of the forest the sweet, with a real peppery/spicy bite, a modicum of dry, tea-like tannins, lovely citrusssy acidity and a dry, sour cherry finish that lingers long on the palate. Not hugely complex, but neither is it a simple quaffer. Rather, it is a beautiful, light red, which makes for a nice aperitif, but equally suited to food.

 

Price:  £9.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine des Gauletteries Rosé 2014 Coteaux du Loir
Domaine des Gauletteries Rosé 2014 Coteaux du Loir
Vintage
2014

Region Coteaux du Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry rosé - light/medium bodied.
Grapes 100% Pineau d'Aunis
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.5%
Food Grilled meats, cold cuts, goat's cheese, or as an apéritif
Next day
Drinks very well next day
Drink Now, or over the next couple of years

100% Pinot d'Aunis, made from the free-run juice from the grapes that go into the Coteaux de Loir red wine. I must admit, I've always had a preference for Loire/Loir rosés over just about any others (yes, that includes Provence and Languedoc) and this one is a perfect example..... a gorgeous, pale salmon/onion skin pink colour, with aromas and flavours of red summer fruits, orange blossom and pink grapefruit. It simply brims with life, with a gentle zestiness, masses of flavour and glorious limey acidity, with absolutely none of the bitter pithiness I find so often in rosés. It really is a cracking wine and is equally at home, with or without food.

 

Price:  £9.79 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine des Gauletteries Tradition 2014 Jasnières
Domaine des Gauletteries Tradition 2014 Jasnières
Vintage
2014

Region Jasnières, on the banks of Le Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry white
Grapes 100% Chenin Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.5%
Food Aperitif, fish, white meats, cheese
Next day
As good
Drink Good now, but will age 5 to 8 years

Limpid pale gold, with orange glints. What a lovely nose - cut limes and pink grapefruit, with hints of spiced apple, fresh root ginger, orange blossom and classic Loir(e) Chenin wet stone minerality. Along with the citrus notes, there's an enticing whiff of something sweeter, more honeyed, which carries through on the palate and lends a touch of richness to what is otherwise an essentially dry wine - "tendre sec", if you like, with perhaps just a gram or two of residual sugar. It really is an attractive and very more-ish style of wine, chock full of soft citrus and dessert apple flavours, and a tantalising hint of herby/saline savouriness, but with that hint of richness being more than offset by laser-like acidity and earthy minerality. It really is a quite beautifully-crafted wine, and utterly delicious to drink now, though I suspect it will age and evolve for another 5 to 10 years or more.

 

Price:  £12.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine Gigou Pineau d'Aunis 2012 Coteaux du Loir
Domaine Gigou Pinot d'Aunis 2012
Vintage
2012

Region Coteaux du Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry red - light/medium bodied.
Grapes 100% Pineau d'Aunis
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.0%
Food Grilled meats, game, cold cuts
Next day
Drinks very well next day
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years - possibly more

Not for lovers of big, rich, jammy wines, this is light, sappy and ethereal, with oodles of tart wild strawberry, raspberry, red cherry and rhubarb aromas and flavours. Beautifully dry and peppery, with lemony hints - really mouth-watering and more-ish, with a long, tangy/spicy finish. Think of a village Burgundy from a cool(ish) year, but with a little less tannin and more fruit, and you're there. Many inexperienced drinkers would find it rather thin and acidic - as indeed I did, a few years ago - but this is a style of wine I have grown to love. It really is deliciously yummy and saliva-inducing stuff!

 

Price:  £11.40 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine Gigou Cuvée Gigou'T Gamay 2009 Vin de France
Domaine Gigou Cuvée Gigou'T Gamay 2009
Vintage
2009

Region Coteaux du Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry red - medium bodied.
Grapes 100% Gamay
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.0%
Food Grilled red or white meats, game, cold cuts
Next day
Drinks even better 2 to 3 days after opening
Drink Now, or over the next 5 years

Although this is 100% Gamay, the resemblance to a minor Burgundy Pinot Noir is uncanny. I guess that has something to do with the traditional maceration (rather than carbonic) and the more northerly climate in which this is grown. Quite a deep colour, with a nose of raspberry and soused black cherry and hints of black pepper and undergrowth. The palate is superficially light and airy, with abundant red and black fruit flavours, plenty of tangy, cherry kernel acidity, just the right level of rustic tannic grip and a gentle peppery, stoney/mineral bite. It isn't a particularly serious wine, but it hit all the right notes when tasted on a pleasant late summer's evening - and was a great match for a barbecued steak and new potatoes with a tomato and green salad. A deliciously light, airy, food-friendly wine.

 

Price:  £11.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine Gigou Jus de Terre 2013 Jasnières
Domaine Gigou Jus de Terre 2013
Vintage
2013

Region Jasnières, on the banks of Le Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry white
Grapes 100% Chenin Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.2%
Food Aperitif, fish, white meats, cheese
Next day
As good
Drink Good now, but will age 5 to 8 years

Medium yellow/gold colour with a slight orange hue. A nose of apple and citrus, with hints of honey and nuts, intense slatey minerality, wet straw and perhaps even the merest suggestion of botrytis - a classic Chenin Blanc nose, full of complexity. There is real ripeness here, but the palate is pretty much bone dry, with citrus and apple fruit flavours countered again by intense minerality and deliciously searing acidity. And that slight hint of botrytis adds a touch of contrariness to the proceedings, whilst the finish is long and tangy. A lovely, classic, old-style Chenin Blanc.

 

Price:  £12.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine Gigou Clos Saint Jacques 2013 Jasnières
Domaine Gigou Clos Saint Jacques 2013
Vintage
2013

Region Jasnières, on the banks of Le Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Dry white
Grapes 100% Chenin Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.0%
Food Aperitif, fish, white meats, cheese
Next day
As good
Drink Good now, but will age 10 to 20 years or more

Bright, medium-deep orange/gold colour. The nose offers complex white fruit, citrus, honey and floral aromas, with a pronounced herbaceousness and hints of lanolin and emulsion paint. The palate is beautifully clean, tight and focused, almost bone dry, with intense, juicy, lemon, lime and gooseberry fruit and equally intense, steely minerality. It really is a most wonderfully mouth(and eye!)-watering wine, certainly not lacking in ripeness, but made in a traditional, bone-dry style. The faint-hearted may find it somewhat austere, but I find it dangerously drinkable (with or without food), although it certainly has the structure to age for years, if not decades. The more I sip it, the more I love it! Long too. Another brilliant, old-style Chenin Blanc.

 

Price:  £14.30 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine Gigou Selection Raisins Nobles 2010 Jasnières
Domaine Gigou Selection Raisins Nobles 2010
Vintage
2013

Region Jasnières, on the banks of Le Loir, south of Le Mans
Colour/Style Semi-sweet (moelleux) white
Grapes 100% Chenin Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.5%
Food Aperitif, blue cheese, fruit puddings, creme brulée
Next day
Even better - lasts for weeks once opened
Drink Wonderful now, but will age for 20 years or more

A glorious medium-deep amber/gold colour. The nose is equally glorious - classic late-harvest Chenin Blanc aromas of lime oil, bruised apple, raisin and orange peel, accompanied by pronounced wet stone and wet wool notes and subtle hints of preserved root ginger and beeswax. I'm not sure how much botrytis the 2010 vintage enjoyed, but I suspect this is more in the way of passerillé (grapes dried on the vine) because, whilst the texture is rich and gently honeyed, it is tremendously focused and tightly-structured. With a fair amount of residual sugar, the palate falls somewhere between demi-sec and moelleux. Layer upon layer of preserved white fruits, honey, lime oil and mandarin orange coat the tongue, with the oily/honeyed texture offset by a massive layer of stoney minerality and fantastically eye-watering apple/citrus-tinged acidity. The combination of - or perhaps the contrast between - lush, sweet, raisined fruit, mineral tang and elevated acidity really is something to behold, and makes for a wonderfully contrary wine, with a long, lingering, spicy, bitter-sweet finish. An outstandingly brilliant wine, which will probably be even greater in another 10-20 years - and certainly a match for the very best sweet wines of La Loire.

 

Price:  £19.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Les Vignes de l'Arque Viognier 2014 IGP Pays d'Oc
Les Vignes de l'Arque Viognier 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Pays d'Oc - west of Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry white - medium bodied.
Grapes 100% Viognier
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food On its own, or with fish, seafood salad, or even fruit.
Next day
As good
Drink Now, or over the next 2 or 3 years

This is full of classic Viognier character - intoxicating aromas of honeysuckle, nectarine and orange blossom leap from the glass, with subtle herb, white pepper and spice notes lurking in the background. The palate is equally intoxicating, quite rich, spicy and full-on, but with bags of mouth-watering acidity and just the right level of zestiness (i.e. not too much). It isn't hugely complex (and isn't trying to be) but it packs in a *lot* of flavour and a finish that just goes on and on. I imagine it would go beautifully with spicy Thai/Malay dishes and curries, but it went equally well when we paired it with a creamy/garlicy/mushroomy pasta dish. Bargain.

 

Price:  £8.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Les Vignes de l'Arque Cuvée Alexia 2014 IGP Pays d'Oc
Les Vignes de l'Arque Alexia 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Pays d'Oc, west of 'Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry white - medium bodied.
Grapes A blend of Muscat a Petit Grains and Sauvignon Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food On its own, or with fish, shellfish or white meats
Next day
As good
Drink Now, or over the next couple of years

Pale(ish) yellow/gold, with green glints. On the face of it, an unusual blend, but when you look at it logically, not such strange bedfellows. And the best facets of each variety are displayed on both the nose and palate - grapey, orangey, floral notes from the Muscat combine perfectly with the grassy, herbaceous notes of the Sauvignon, in a delightfully refreshing wine. Zingy, rather than zesty, with juicy soft citrus, white peach and herb flavours, it is clean, fresh, elegant and beautifully focused, with bracing acidity and a long, cool, gently peppery finish. A lovely wine, which adds up to more than the sum of its parts - and perfect for sipping on the patio, or to pair with all manner of foods, such as white meats, fish, shellfish or even cheese. Either way, you are onto a winner!

 

Price:  £8.75 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Les Vignes de l'Arque Cuvée Amélie 2014 IGP Pays d'Oc
Les Vignes de l'Arque Cuvée Amélie 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Pays d'Oc, west of 'Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry white - medium bodied.
Grapes 80% Chardonnay, 15% Roussanne, 5% Sauvignon Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Fish with a creamy sauce, scallops, white meats, cheese
Next day
As good or even better
Drink Now, or over the next 2 to 3 years

The Chardonnay and Roussanne grapes are fermented and aged for a few months in oak barrels ,with the Sauvignon added at the end, to give heightened freshness. Bright mid-gold colour with green glints, the nose offers tropical fruit, fresh grape and orange aromas, with notes of honeysuckle and carefully judged oak. The palate is similarly loaded with fresh, juicy fruit flavours, with a gently oily texture, a touch of saline minerality and a hint of peppery spice. Again, the effect of the oak-ageing is subtle, enhancing rather than overpowering the fruit, whilst adding a hint of tannic structure. An unusual, yet effective blend, which is a delight to drink now, but with the potential to age and evolve for another 2 or 3 years. And at the price, absolutely cracking value for money.

 

Price:  £9.85 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Les Vignes de l'Arque Terroir de l'Arque 2014 IGP Pays d'Oc
Les Vignes de l'Arque Terroir de l'Arque 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Pays d'Oc, west of Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied. Aged in vat
Grapes 100% Grenache
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Roasted meats, charcuterie, spaghetti bolognaise, cheese
Next day
As good
Drink Now or over the next 2 to 3 years

A limpid, bright red colour with small red fruits, pepper and spice aromas and flavours, with fine, soft tannins and juicy acidity. There is a refreshing bitter cherry note on the finish, together with a hint of dark chocolate. This cuvée used to be made in a big, bold, super-concentrated style, but this latest vintage is lighter and fresher and shows much more elegance. Drinking well already, but will age nicely for 2 or 3 years..

 

Price:  £8.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Les Vignes de l'Arque Duché d'Uzès 2014
Les Vignes de l'Arque Duché d'Uzes Rouge 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Duché d'Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied. Aged in oak barrels for 5 months
Grapes 70% Syrah and 30% Grenache
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food White meats, duck, grilled steak, cheese
Next day
Even better, developing greater complexity
Drink Now or over the next 5 years

An old favourite cuvée from an old favourite grower, a blend of Syrah and Grenache, aged for just a few months in old(er) oak barrels. We have been buying from Les Vignes de l'Arque for almost 20 years (in other words, for some time before we even began importing). And as always, this one is bang on form, similar in style to a good Côtes du Rhône Villages and offering rich, ripe, herb and spice-infused black fruit aromas, with hints of leather and tar. The palate offers a veritable bucket-load of ripe bramble and cassis fruit flavours, with notes of roasted beef/lamb and garrigue herbs - in fact, both fruity and savoury in equal measures - with chunky tannins, plenty of juicy acidity and a persistent finish. It is very young and has *a lot* more to give, over the next 3 to 5 years, but is already deliciously drinkable.

 

Price:  £8.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Les Vignes de l'Arque Cuvée des Boissières 2013 IGP Pays d'Oc
Les Vignes de l'Arque Cuvée des Boissieres 2013
Vintage
2013
 
Region Pays d'Oc, west of Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied. Aged in oak barrels for 9 months
Grapes 100% Merlot
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Entrecote steak, game, cheese
Next day
Even better
Drink Now or over the next 5 to 8 years

A dark purple core, fading to deep ruby red, with ripe red and black fruit aromas and notes of toffee, mocha and classy oak. The palate offers sweet bramble and blackcurrant flavours, with notes of bonfire toffee and bitter chocolate, powerful but elegant tannins and a long, gently spicy finish. This is no simple country wine - it is considerably complex and a brilliant example of just how good Languedoc Merlot can be. And great value for money, too.

 

Price:  £10.25 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Les Vignes de l'Arque Chant des Baumes 2013 Duché d'Uzès
Les Vignes de l'Arque Chant des Baumes 201
Vintage
2013

Region Duché d'Uzès, in the Gard
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied. Aged in oak barrels for 18 months
Grapes 75% Syrah and 25% Grenache
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Liver, steak and kidney pie, duck, cheese
Next day
Even better, softer and developing greater complexity
Drink Now or over the next 5 to 8 years

This is the estate's flagship red wine, aged for 18 months in barrel, and with a deep purple robe. The nose is really complex and packed with dark bramble and cassis aromas, curry spices, garrigue herbs, toasty oak and damp earth. The palate is similarly concentrated and full of dense, ripe black fruit flavours, laced with all manner of licorice, peppery spice, coffee and savoury/herby nuances, all wrapped around a core of chocolatey tannins and just the right level of balancing acidity. The spicy, eau de vie-infused mid palate is countered by a long, cool, gently minty finish. Although approachable now, with food, this wine will undoubtedly reward cellaring over the next 5 to 8 years (possibly more). It's a class act and provides quite brilliant value for money.

 

Price:  £13.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Saint Etienne Perserose Red 2014 IGP Pays du Gard
Domaine Saint Etienne Perserose Rouge 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Pays du Gard, south-west of Avignon
Colour/Style Dry red - medium bodied.
Grapes Grenache, Syrah and Carignan
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Cold cuts, char-grilled meats, pizza, spaghetti bolognaise
Next day
As good
Drink Now, or over the next 2 or 3 years
An enticing nose of wild strawberries, red cherries, creamy vanilla, herbs, and an intriguing hint of citrus fruit. Warm, spiced fruit and herby flavours abound, with lovely acidity and gentle tannins. For such a lowly denomination, this is classy indeed - full of ripe, juicy fruit, yet beautifully "winey" and satisfying, with those gently spicy flavours lingering long on the palate. Coming from vineyards which fall just outside of the Côtes du Rhône appellation, this really is a Côtes du Rhône in all but name, and is a cracking weekday wine. It would age nicely for a year or two, but why bother when it is so delicious now? Southern France in a glass!
 

Price:  £7.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Saint Etienne Les Albizzias Rouge 2014 Côtes du Rhône
Domaine Saint Etienne Les Albizzias Rouge 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Côtes du Rhône, south-west of Avignon
Colour/Style Dry red - medium bodied.
Grapes 65% Grenache, 15% Syrah and 20% Carignan
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Cold cuts, stews, lamb, beef, pizza, cheese
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
Intense, vibrant red and black fruit aromas fairly leap out of the glass. Black cherry and bramble, with perhaps even a hint of white stone fruit cream. A hint of garrigue herb adds a touch of complexity. The palate brims with luscious, vibrant fruit flavours, along with some savoury notes, nicely grippy tannins, ample acidity and plenty of spicy warmth. A textbook Côtes du Rhône, which is drinking beautifully even at this stage, but will age nicely for a few years too.
 

Price:  £9.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Saint Etienne Perserose Rosé 2014 IGP Pays du Gard
Domaine Saint Etienne Perserose Rosé 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Pays du Gard, south-west of Avignon
Colour/Style Dry rosé - medium bodied.
Grapes Grenache, Syrah and Carignan
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Aperitif, cold cuts, shellfish, char-grilled meats, pizza
Next day
As good
Drink Now, or over the next couple of years
New vintage - tasting note to follow.
 

Price:  £7.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Saint Etienne Les Albizzias Blanc 2014 Côtes du Rhône
Domaine Saint Etienne Albizzias Blanc 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Côtes du Rhône, south-west of Avignon
Colour/Style Dry white - medium bodied.
Grapes Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Bourboulenc, Roussanne, Marsanne and Viognier
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.0%
Food Aperitif, fish, shellfish, white meats, goat's cheese
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 2 to 3 years
New vintage - tasting note to follow.
 

Price:  £9.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Gayda Chemin de Moscou 2012 IGP Pays d'Oc
Gayda Chemin de Moscou 2012
Vintage
2012

Region IGP Pays d'Oc - sourced from various parts of Languedoc
Colour/Style Dry red - full-bodied, aged in barrels for 21 months
Grapes 62% Syrah, 32% Grenache and 6% Cinsault
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Fillet of beef, rack of lamb, game, mushroom risotto
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or up to 2025
The grapes are sourced from no less than 6 different areas of Languedoc and Roussillon. The Syrah is aged in new oak for 9 months, the Grenache and Cinsault in 2 and 3 year-old oak for 9 months, followed by blending of the best barrels of each variety and a further 12 months maturation of the final blend in the same barrels. This is a wine of considerable class and breeding, revealing complex notes of flowers, incense, bread, beef, raspberry and bramble. The palate is young, tight and gently tannic, but already showing layers of complexity, with immense concentration and length of flavour It really is enough to put a smile on the most pained of faces. As I've said of previous vintages of this wine, at the ludicrously low price of 20 quid, it is a genuine Languedoc classic, and worthy of a place in any wine-lover's cellar.
 

Price:  £19.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Montesquiou l'Estela 2014 Jurançon Sec
Domaine de Montesquiou l'Estela 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Jurançon - south-west of Pau, in deepest SW France
Colour/Style Dry white, aged on its lees (in vat - no oak) for 6 months
Grapes 50% Gros Manseng, 10% Petit Manseng, 40% Courbu
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Salmon, shellfish, chicken, stir fry, or as an aperitif
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
Clear, pale, shiny silvery-gold colour. The nose offers a complex array of freshly-cut lime, orange peel and hay aromas, delightfully prickly and with an almost palpable minerally, smoky depth - a fabulous nose! Hints of peach/apricot add just a suggestion of richness, which manifests itself on the palate and offers a generosity that I haven't encountered in previous vintages of this cuvée. It really is delightfully concentrated and intense, yet wonderfully fresh and mouth-watering, in a zesty, appley, earthy, mineral sort of way. In fact, you would be hard pressed to find a wine of this sort of structure and class at twice the price. An absolute delight and by some distance the best vintage of this cuvée that I have tasted. Quite simply, one of the finest bargains on our list. Biodynamic.
 

Price:  £9.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Montesquiou Cuvade Préciouse 2014 Jurançon Sec
Domaine de Montesquiou Cuvade Preciouse 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Jurançon - south-west of Pau, in deepest SW France
Colour/Style Dry white, aged in oak barrels for 10 months
Grapes 60% Gros Manseng, 30% Petit Manseng, 10% Camaralet
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Aperitif, hard cheeses, lemon chicken, risotto, salmon
Next day
Even better - keeps for days in the fridge
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 8 years
A bright, medium-pale, limpid gold colour. Intense! And very complex, too - aromas of lime oil and orange peel, with a generous portion of apple pie with raisins and hints of exotic fruits, not to mention a pot-pourri of herbs and spices. Having been bottled in September 2015, at the time of writing (November 2015) it takes a full day or more after opening to really open-up, but one's patience is richly rewarded. Although this wine spends 10 or so months in barrel, the oak influence is ever so subtle, allowing the fruit to shine through on the palate. It is concentrated but beautifully balanced, taut and structured, full of zesty lime/orange fruit, herb and spice and even a hint of grape tannin. As ever, though, the qualities that shine through more than anything are the intense, stony/steely minerality and tab-tingling acidity, which carry the fruit all the way through to a very long finish. Another truly life-affirming wine from the finest grower in the region. Biodynamic.
 

Price:  £11.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Montesquiou Terre de France 2014 Vin de France
Domaine de Montesquiou Terre de France 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Jurançon - south-west of Pau, in deepest SW France
Colour/Style Dry white, aged in oak barrels for 10 months
Grapes 65% Gros Manseng, 30% Petit Manseng, 5% Camaralet
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.5%
Food Aperitif, soft cheeses, lemon chicken, risotto, seafood
Next day
Even better - keeps for days in the fridge
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 8 years
Please forgive the long note, but this really is a fascinating wine. This is essentially the same blend as Cuvade Préciouse (see above). They occasionally experience a "stuck" alcoholic fermentation, due to the grapes being so ripe and concentrated. To qualify for the Jurancon Sec appellation, the residual sugar must be no more than 4 grammes per litre, whereas the fermentation occasionally stops whilst there is still somewhere between 8 and 12 g/l. And whilst it is possible to kick-start the fermentation again (by increasing the temperature) winemakers Fabrice and Sébastien Montesquiou feel that the resulting wine would not be true to the style of wine they are looking for. And so they bottle a few barrels (no more than 4, so by my calculation, around 1200 bottles) of this rather wonderful nectar. It isn't your typical "super cuvee" - it is a wine made by necessity, rather than design - but exhibits all of the qualities of Cuvade Préciouse, only with the volume turned up to 11(!)

The nose offers masses of honeyed, sweet-smelling quince and apricot aromas, laced with aromatic herbs and spices, orange blossom, honeysuckle and a judicious lick of oak. And yet it still has that lifted lime oil and mineral quality so typical of Jurançon Sec - you can literally smell the acidity and immense freshness, even before you take a sip. Indeed, for a wine with such immense concentration (and an abv of 14.5%) it really is quite staggeringly juicy and refreshing, with barely a hint of alcohol, and the most complex array of flavours you are ever likely to encounter in a young, dry white wine. It manages to combine the same zesty lime/orange fruit, herb and spice qualities as Cuvade Préciouse, not to mention similar levels of acidity and minerality, whilst achieving perhaps even more depth and elegance. I'm not sure if my enthusiasm for this wine is quite clear enough, but just in case it isn't, I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that it is the loveliest white wine to have passed my lips this year - indeed for many a year. If it were Burgundy (for there are indeed certain structural similarities) it would be a top 1er Cru at the very least. It really is utterly wonderful and more-ish. And at the price, a really quite remarkable bargain! Biodynamic.

For (yet) more information on this fascinating wine (and Domaine de Montesquiou in general), see the Leon Stolarski Blog.

 

Price:  £11.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Montesquiou Grappe d'Or 2014 Jurançon
Domaine de Montesquiou Grappe d'Or 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Jurançon - south-west of Pau, in deepest SW France
Colour/Style Sweet white, aged in oak barrels for 11 months
Grapes 100% Petit Manseng
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.0%
Food Blue cheese, foie gras, smoked salmon, tarte tatin, lemon layer or Sussex pond pudding, or simply as an aperitif
Next day
Indestructible - lasts for weeks in the fridge
Drink Now, or over the next 10-plus years
The grapes for this wine are harvested deep into November, by which time they have begun to dry on the vine, concentrating the flavours, whilst retaining all of the bracing acidity which is the hallmark of Petit Manseng. The colour is a very enticing shiny, rich yellow-gold. Goodness me, what a fabulous nose! The intensity pricks (or more appropriately caresses) the senses, offering a veritable orchard-ful of sweet apple, apricot, mango and passion fruit aromas, with further notes of dessicated orange peel, root ginger, cove and fig. Trust me, it's all in there! Take a sip and you are transported to vinous heaven. It is palpably sweet, luscious and full-bodied, whilst at the same time supremely balanced, courtesy of the most glorious, tangy, citrussy acidity and earthy minerality. You could *almost* imagine drinking this as a main course wine (think chicken, duck or sweet and sour pork), but the rich, sweet/tangy palate makes for a match made in heaven for starters such as patés, fois gras or smoked mackerel. Or of course it is equally suited to desserts (lemon or apple-based tarts and puddings) or soft cheeses. A stunning wine! Biodynamic.
 

Price:  £15.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine de Ravanès l'Ibis Blanc 2013 IGP Coteaux de Murviel
Domaine de Ravanes Ibis Blanc 2010
Vintage
2013

Region Thézan-les-Béziers, 10km north of Béziers
Colour/Style Dry white - medium/full bodied
Grapes 1/3 each of Grenache Blanc, Maccabeu and Ugni Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Aperitif, seafood, fish, chicken, spicy oriental dishes
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 2 to 3 years
Limpid, pale gold/straw colour, with a surprisingly complex array of fruit and herbaceous aromas - sage, oregano and crushed nettle, combined with fresh apple and peach, with hints of honey, lanolin and wood smoke. The palate is equally complex - sappy, fresh and mouth-watering, with bags of citrus and tree fruits, almost bone dry, but rounded and quite generous, with a nutty, gently honeyed texture. It also evolves considerably after time in the glass. A cracking little wine, and a real bargain. Lovely!
 

Price:  £8.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Ravanès Le Renard Blanc 2013 IGP Coteaux de Murviel
Domaine de Ravanes Le Renard Blanc 2013
Vintage
2013

Region Thézan-les-Béziers, 10km north of Béziers
Colour/Style Dry white - full bodied, fermented and aged 1 year in barrel
Grapes 75% Grenache Gris, 25% Maccabeu
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Fish, chicken, pork, paella, oriental dishes
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 8 years
The estate's top white, from 75 year-old vines. A lovely bright, medium gold colour, with a fabulous nose that covers just about every base, with fruity, zesty, herby, herbaceous, spicy and mineral notes all putting in an appearance. Lime oil, quince, crushed nettles, thyme, mint, coriander and wet stone are just a few of the aromas and flavours I can pick out, in a wine of genuine subtlety and complexity. Tight and focused in the mouth, offering masses of flavour, with ample acidity and plenty of grip, courtesy of extended maceration on the grape skins, followed by a year's ageing in oak barrels. Restrained power and elegance is the order of the day, with a long, cool, minty/spicy finish. And whilst it really is a joy to drink already, I can see it gaining yet more complexity and weight over the next 3 to 5 years, possibly more. Tangy and dry, rather than rich and oily, this is a wine that is closer in style to white Burgundy or old-style Rioja than Rhone. A really cracking wine, which is good to drink now, but will also age nicely for a few years yet.
 

Price:  £15.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine de Ravanès Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 IGP Coteaux de Murviel
Domaine de Ravanes Merlot Cabernet 2012
Vintage
2009
Region Thézan-les-Béziers, 10km north of Béziers
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied. Aged 18 months in vat (no oak)
Grapes 50% Merlot, 50% Cabernet Sauvignon
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food All manner of meat, cheese or vegetable dishes, pizza
Next day
Even better on day 2
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 8 years
Semi-opaque purple/red in colour, this is deep, dark and inviting, with heady aromas of cassis and bramble fruit, tobacco, citrus and spice, with little hints of meat and new leather. The palate is bright and intensely fruity, lightly spicy and herby, with bags of red and black berry fruit flavours, leather and spice. The texture is medium-rich and mouth-filling, with ample acidity and beautifully grippy tannins, making for a wine that is lovely to drink now, but with the structure to age and improve for another 5 years or more. This is a brilliant example of a Languedoc "Bordeaux blend" and frankly it knocks spots off just about any right-bank Claret under £15.
 

Price:  £9.85 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine de Ravanès Alicante Bouschet 2014 IGP Coteaux de Murviel
Domaine de Ravanes Alicante Bouschet 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Thézan-les-Béziers, 10km north of Béziers
Colour/Style Dry red - medium/full bodied. Aged in vat (no oak)
Grapes 100% Alicante Bouschet
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food All manner of meat, cheese or vegetable dishes, pizza
Next day
Even better on day 2
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
Winemaker Marc Benin experimented with making a red table wine from Alicante Bouschet for 3 years before hitting on the perfect recipe. It is macerated on the skins for just 4 days, before running the juice off, in order to tame the inherently fierce tannins and retain the fruit. The result is a relatively light-coloured red wine, full of red and black fruit flavours, a lick of spice and a sprinkling of garrigue herbs, with good concentration, just the right amount of tannin and ample acidity. All in all, a cracking good wine!
 

Price:  £10.85 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Ravanès Petit Verdot 2013 IGP Coteaux de Murviel
Domaine de Ravanes Petit Verdot 2013
Vintage
2013

Region Thézan-les-Béziers, 10km north of Béziers
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, aged 16 months in vat (no oak)
Grapes 100% Petit Verdot
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Red meats, cheese, vegetable or mushroom dishes
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 8 years
Aged for 18 months in vat, so no oak to get in the way of all the lush, ripe bramble and blackcurrant fruit. One might expect this wine to be quite tough and angular for the moment, but not a bit of it - for it really is lovely to drink already. A mélange of black fruits, leather, spice, herb and eau de vie aromas greet the nose, whilst the palate is ripe and full-bodied, with bags of acidity and a healthy dose of tea-like tannins. I make no secret of my relative antipathy towards Bordeaux wines, but when its blends or (in this case) constituent grape varieties are grown in the Languedoc, by a top grower such as Marc Bénin, they can fill me with joy. And this is just such a wine - utterly delicious and more-ish.
 

Price:  £11.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de Ravanès Les Gravières du Taurou 2010 Vin de Pays de Coteaux de Murviel
Vintage
2010

Region Thézan-les-Béziers, 10km north of Béziers
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, aged 4 years in oak barrels
Grapes 38% Merlot, 32% Petit Verdot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Beef, lamb, game, duck, wild mushroom risotto
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 10 to 15 years
The estate's top red, from 35 year-old vines, it shows a youthful dark purple/carmine with a tiny rim. It positively reeks of brambles, cassis, black cherry, polished leather, cedar and damp earth, with subtle hints of violets and iodine. If it sounds like an A to Z of all of the best wine descriptors, that's because it is - indeed, a really quite remarkably complex and intoxicating nose. As a Bordeaux blend, it smells like a top classed growth from a great year, but with a little bit of Languedoc spice and garrigue herb thrown in for good measure - and no greenness! On the palate, the fruit is beautifully ripe and rounded, almost sweet and luscious, but with plenty of tannic grip and fabulous acidity. And even after 4 years in barrel, you hardly notice the oak, which is (in my book) the sign of a masterful winemaker, at the top of his game. Even at just 5 years of age, this has a warmth and a generosity that makes it hard to resist drinking now, whilst clearly also having the structure to age for another 10 years at least - and perhaps 20 or more. An utterly wonderful wine!
 

Price:  £21.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Mas Sibert Armélot 2014 Vin de France
Mas Sibert Armelot 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Fos, in the hills near Faugères
Colour/Style Dry red - medium/full bodied, aged 10 months in vat
Grapes 40% Merlot, 40% Syrah and 20% Petit Verdot
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Red and white meat dishes, pizza, risotto, soft cheeses
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
Briary and blackcurrant aromas, with hints of red cherry and garrigue herbs and spice. The palate is crammed full of fresh, juicy, gently spicy red and black fruit flavours. The tannins are ripe and relatively soft, the acidity is ample and there is a delightful mineral/stone/cherry kernel bite. Winemaker Simon Bertschinger tells me that he selected his Merlot and Petit Verdot clones for their acidity, and he made excellent choices, for this really is a wonderfully vibrant, juicy, tangy wine!
 

Price:  £11.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Mas Sibert Fosénot 2013 Vin de France
Mas Sibert Fosenot 2013
Vintage
2013

Region Fos, in the hills near Faugères
Colour/Style Dry red - medium/full bodied, aged 10 months in vat
Grapes 70% Syrah, 10% Sangiovese, 10% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Roasted/grilled meats, spicy dishes, cheese
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 8 years
Masses of juicy raspberry and cherry fruit, married to juicy cherry kernel/citrus acidity and tea-like tannins, which - combined with a fresh rather than savoury herbiness - makes for a really mouth-watering and beautifully balanced wine. Time in the glass reveals some deeper flavours, more bramble and cassis fruit, with a hint of black olive savouriness. A brilliant expression of Syrah, with Sangiovese, Merlot and Petit Verdot adding lots of interest and complexity. Really lovely stuff!
 

Price:  £12.95 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Mas Sibert Soléno 2013 Vin de France
Mas Sibert Soleno 2013
Vintage
2013
Image to follow 
Region Fos, in the hills near Faugères
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, aged 10 months in used oak barrels
Grapes 40% Merlot, 30% Petit Verdot, 30% Syrah
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.5%
Food Cassoulet, other rich meat stews, game, mature cheeses
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 10 years
The estate's top red wine. Winemaker Simon Bertschinger uses re-toasted oak barrels, which he prefers over brand new barrels, so the oak influence is more subtle. This is quite a deep colour with aromas of cassis and bramble and background notes of pepper and spice. The palate is ripe and fleshy, with tea-like tannins balanced by nice acidity and again a hint of peppery spice. It is undoubtedly youthful, but already showing some elegance, and certainly opens out after a night in the decanter. And it certainly went very nicely with a dish of Toulouse sausages, fatty pork and sautéed potatoes. Drinking now, but with a lot of development ahead of it.
 

Price:  £15.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Giroflet Blanc 2011 IGP Pays de l'Hérault
Giroflet Blanc 2011
Vintage
2011

Region Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry white - medium/full bodied, aged 1 year vat
Grapes Chardonnay, Viognier, Roussanne, Petit Manseng, Petit Arvine and Chenin Blanc
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.0%
Food Grilled red meats, game, mushroom risotto, cheese
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 5 or more years
A field blend of Chardonnay, Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier, Chenin Blanc, Petit Manseng, with just a few rows of each variety grown in a vineyard of 0.6 of hectare, typically producing just 1500 bottles each vintage, at around 20 hl/ha. All of the varieties are fermented together then aged for a year in vat, with no oak and little or no added SO2, with only CO2 for protection. Is it stable? Yes! Is it delicious? You bet it is! Lemon zest, apple and hints of apricot on the nose, with plenty of herbaciousness and a good deal of saline/seashell minerality and a subtle "flor" hint. And it gets better and better with air. Those sweet-sour white tree fruit and citrus fruit and herby notes are all present and correct on the palate, with a gentle nuttiness. It is delightfully tangy, initially light and airy, but with an underlying richness that comes from perfectly ripe fruit, with the merest hint of grape tannin and bucket-loads of citrussy acidity and a massive dose of stoney minerality. It really is utterly delicious - and, for the money, a quite remarkable bargain
 

Price:  £10.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Giroflet Cinsault 2014 IGP Pays de l'Hérault
Giroflet Cinsault 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - medium/full bodied, aged 6 months in vat
Grapes 100% Cinsault
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.5%
Food Red and white meats, pizza, cold cuts, cheeses
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
From a tiny (0.07 of a hectare) which produces just 500 bottles. Who says Cinsault is only good for making rosé? Not us - we already import red Cinsault wines from a couple of other growers, and this is a worthy addition indeed. The nose is floral, heady, spicy, smoky and gently tarry, with a hint of new leather and absolutely crammed full of summer pudding and fresh bread aromas. The palate offers myriad raspberry, strawberry and red cherry flavours, with a sprinkle of white pepper, allspice and a touch of fine eau de vie. It is delightfully fresh and fruity, in the manner of a young cru Beaujolais, but slightly richer and full of Languedoc warmth and charm. Whilst dangerously drinkable on its own, it is also the perfect accompaniment to an entrecote steak, sautéed potatoes and a mixed salad. Yum!
 

Price:  £10.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Giroflet Le Petit Giroflet 2014 IGP Pays de l'Hérault
Petit Giroflet 2014
Vintage
2014

Region Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - medium/full bodied, aged 6 months in vat
Grapes 100% Grenache
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.5%
Food Red and white meats, pizza, cheeses
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
Made from a plot of young Grenache vines, covering just 0.3 of a hectare, with less than 2,000 bottles produced. A rather intoxicating mix of ripe black and red fruits, garrigue herbs, damp earth, freshly-baked bread and fine eau de vie. The flavours are robust and full of cherry and raspberry fruit flavours and youthful vigour, with gently rustic tannins and excellent acidity. It is already good to drink, but will certainly repay a year or two in the cellar, and should eventually show genuine elegance.
 

Price:  £10.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Giroflet Rouge 2010 IGP Pays de l'Hérault
Vintage
2010

Region Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, aged 2 years in old oak barrels
Grapes 100% Grenache
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.5%
Food Grilled red meats, game, mushroom risotto, cheese
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 10 years
100% old-vine Grenache, grown on Villefranchien terroir (large pebbles, quartz, etc, mixed with clay/limestone) in a rather remote and beautiful 0.7 hectare vineyard near to Pezenas. Just 1,000 bottles are produced in a typical year, at a yield of not much more than 10 hl/ha. This is a classic example of why some call Grenache Noir the "Pinot of the Languedoc". No, it neither smells nor tastes like Pinot Noir, but it does have an elegance, vivacity and sheer weight of fresh red and black summer fruits that simply screams elegance. A wonderfully fragrant and alluring combination of raspberry, redcurrant and red cherry aromas, with pronounced florality, hints of garrigue herbs and soft spices all make for a truly elegant wine. On the palate, we have fresh and crystallised sweet-sour red and black fruits, with a touch of savouriness and fine, tea-like tannins, allied to juicy, cherry kernel acidity and an almost imperceptible lick of older oak (all of the barrels have seen 7 vintages or more). At almost 5 years of age, this wine really is as fresh as a daisy, and seemingly just beginning to get into its stride. We can honestly say that this wine (and this grower) is one of our greatest "finds" in recent years.
 

Price:  £15.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance A Clara Blanc 2014 Vin de France
Domaine La Garance A Clara White 2014
Vintage
2014
Region From the hills above Bédarieux, northern Languedoc
Colour/Style Dry white - medium bodied, aged in vat
Grapes 100% Chardonnay
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.0%
Food Seafood/shellfish, baked fish, spicy Asian food, aperitif
Next day
Even better on day 2
Drink Now, or over the next 2 or 3 years
Ultra-pale, bright, limpid straw colour with orange glints, with the vaguest hint of petillance on opening/pouring (courtesy of a slug of CO2 added at bottling, to keep it fresh). And fresh it certainly is - citrus and apple aromas leap from the glass, with hints of garrigue herbs, lime oil, wet stone and iodine adding some complexity. On the palate, there's an initial rush of citrus and rhubarb - really quite mouth-wateringly fresh and zingy, tightly-wound and almost tart to begin with - but after the CO2 has dissipated, it settles down and becomes more rounded and integrated. It's amazing what a good shake of the bottle and a few minutes of air does to it. Not that you lose any of that amazing acidity - if you are looking for a typically rich Languedoc Chardonnay, then you are looking in the wrong place. This is delicate, tightly-wound, tongue-tingling stuff, with a touch of genuine elegance, perhaps more in the way of a young, un-oaked Jura Chardonnay, a Jurancon Sec or even a bone-dry Riesling. Pure as spring water and chock full of steely minerality and juicy citrus, with a long, contrary, dry yet juicy finish. And just 12% abv.Yummy!
 

Price:  £11.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

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Domaine de La Garance A Clara Rouge 2014 Vin de France
Domaine de La Garance A Clara red 2014
Vintage
2014
Region Caux, a few km from Pézenas and Bédarieux
Colour/Style Dry red - medium bodied
Grapes 50% Grenache and 50% Pinot Noir
Alcohol (a.b.v)
12.0%
Food White meats, risotto, pizza, cheeses.
Next day
Even better on day 2 (or even day 3!)
Drink Now, or over the next 3+ years
A blend of Pinot Noir (grown 600m above sea level, in the hills above Bédarieux) and Grenache Noir (grown on the Garance estate in Caux). This is just so wonderfully vibrant and full of life! They say that Grenache is the Pinot Noir of the Languedoc, but this wine goes one better - the *best* Grenache, coupled with "cool climate" Languedoc Pinot that could for all the world have been grown in the Cote d'Or, such is its elegance and sheer vivacity. The aromas simply leap out of the glass - damp earth and wet stone, red and black cherry, raspberry, dried orange, new leather, fine eau de vie, a dash of white pepper and herbs of the garrigue - they're all in there, and so much more. It may not be designed to be complex, but it really does tick most (if not all) of my boxes. The promise of the nose is more than matched by the earthy, ripe, sweet-edged red and black fruit flavours on the palate, laced with garrigue herbs and just a hint of peppery spice, countered by melting tannins and truly mouth-watering soft-citrus acidity. And for that reason, it may just be one of the most enjoyable bottles of wine we have drank. Oh, and by the way, no fungicides, pesticides or SO2 were used in the growing/making of this wine (not to mention, no oak). Delicious!
 

Price:  £11.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2004 Vin de Pays de l'Hérault
Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2004
Vintage
2004
Region Caux, a few km north-west of Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, partly aged in barrel
Grapes 90% Carignan and 10% Syrah (65 year old vines)
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Roasted red meats, game, cheeses.
Next day
Still fresh, though at its best on day one
Drink Now, or over the next 5 to 10 years
Old vine Carignan and Syrah, with yields of just 18 hectolitres per hectare. A long maceration (3 months) is followed by 27 months ageing (90% in concrete vats and 10% in oak barrels). What strikes me is how wonderfully "Languedoc" this smells and tastes. Of course, the fact that it is mostly (very old) Carignan helps. The colour is a deep-ish blood red, leading to a slightly bricking rim. The nose offers a complex array of red and black berry and cherry fruits, dried orange peel and polished old leather, with background notes of cedar, curry spices, garrigue herbs and tea. All of which suggest that the 2 years' oak-ageing was done with a sympathetic hand, for a more harmonious and intoxicating bouquet is hard to imagine. Although this is no shrinking violet, there is plenty of charm to the palate, with bags of spiced black cherry, redcurrant and bramble fruit flavours. The tannins are dense and grippy, with notes of dark chocolate and licorice, which - together with the ample fruit and racy acidity - will ensure it ages and evolves further for another 5 to 10 years. A fabulously old-school Languedoc wine, which is yet to reach its peak.
 

Price:  £23.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2006 Vin de Pays de l'Hérault
Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2006
Vintage
2006
Region Caux, a few km north-west of Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, partly aged in barrel
Grapes 90% Carignan and 10% Syrah (65 year old vines)
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Roasted red meats, game, cheeses.
Next day
Still fresh, though at its best on day one
Drink Now, or over the next 10+ years
Old vine Carignan and Syrah, with yields of just 18 hectolitres per hectare. A long maceration (3 months) is followed by 27 months ageing (90% in concrete vats and 10% in oak barrels). The nose offers-up myriad aromas of red and black fruits, woodsmoke, pepper, exotic spices, leather and garrigue herbs. There is also a strong hint of grilled meat and - at the other end of the spectrum - even some delicate floral notes. A huge hit of bramble and redcurrant fruit washes over the palate, accompanied by the most wonderful citrus-tinged acidity and all kinds of other flavours and textures, which coat the mouth and linger for an age. This really is a wine which fills the senses and keeps you coming back for more. There is plenty of grip, but the sheer pleasure offered by the intense, concentrated, yet gloriously succulent sweet-and-sour fruit is such that you almost don't notice the tannin. Every mouthful leaves you salivating and simply craving for more. It is utterly delicious, and yet another example of why I think Carignan - in the right winemaker's hands - is the jewel in the Languedoc's crown. A stunning wine.
 

Price:  £23.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2007 Vin de Pays de l'Hérault
Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2007
Vintage
2007
Region Caux, a few km north-west of Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, partly aged in barrel
Grapes 90% Carignan and 10% Syrah (65 year old vines)
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Roasted red meats, game, cheeses.
Next day
Still fresh, though at its best on day one
Drink Now, or over the next 10+ years
Old vine Carignan and Syrah, with yields of just 18 hectolitres per hectare. A long maceration (3 months) is followed by 27 months ageing (90% in concrete vats and 10% in oak barrels). This is almost on a par with the amazing 2006 - perhaps even its equal. Once again, mostly Carignan, with a little Syrah, deep blood red in colour, almost opaque, with a tiny rim. As with the 2006, the nose is a riot of red and black fruits, smoke, white pepper, exotic spices, leather and herbs, with hints of sandalwood and forest floor. The palate has all of those things going for it, and more - concentrated but not overly rich, a complex array of red and black fruits, with healthy tannins and a core of juicy, citrus and cranberry-tinged acidity. The finish is satisfyingly dry and tangy, with lingering flavours of forest fruits, cedar and peppery spice. Although it may be a few years short of its absolute peak, it is nevertheless rather delicious already. Another wonderful, world-class Carignan.
 

Price:  £23.50 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2009 Coteaux du Languedoc
Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2009
Vintage
2009
Region Caux, a few km north-west of Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, partly aged in barrel
Grapes 90% Carignan and 10% Syrah (65 year old vines)
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Roasted red meats, game, cheeses.
Next day
Even better on day 2
Drink Now, or over the next 10+ years
Old vine Carignan and Syrah, with yields of just 18 hectolitres per hectare. A long maceration (3 months) is followed by 27 months ageing (90% in concrete vats and 10% in oak barrels). The colour is a deep-ish blood red, leading to a slightly bricking rim. Of the several vintages of this wine that we currently offer, this is possibly the one that is most immediately approachable. Not because it is mature (far from it) but because it possesses such a generous core of sweetly fruity, almost creamy bramble and blackcurrant fruit, along with that typical combination of orange peel, polished leather, cedar and exotic spices. Again, we have bags of spiced black cherry, bramble and garrigue herb flavours, but the tannins, whilst grippy, are beautifully ripe and  - combined with fabulously juicy acidity - holds everything together so well, in a wine that is at the same time both generously lush and tightly structured. It really is so lovely to drink now, but will (if you can resist) undoubtedly age and evolve for at least another 10 years. A classic, old-style Languedoc Carignan, worth every penny of the asking price - and more.
 

Price:  £22.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2012 Coteaux du Languedoc
Domaine de La Garance Les Armieres 2012
Vintage
2012
Region Caux, a few km north-west of Pézenas
Colour/Style Dry red - full bodied, partly aged in barrel
Grapes 90% Carignan and 10% Syrah (65 year old vines)
Alcohol (a.b.v)
14.0%
Food Roasted red meats, game, cheeses.
Next day
Even better on day 2
Drink Now, or over the next 10+ years
Old vine Carignan and Syrah, with yields of just 18 hectolitres per hectare. A long maceration (3 months) is followed by 27 months ageing (90% in concrete vats and 10% in oak barrels). A fantastic combination of fresh and soused bramble and black cherry, with a dash of white pepper, soft spice and a hint of polished old wardrobe - a supremely aromatic and alluring nose, all of which comes through on the palate, in a wine which combines real verve and genuine complexity. It greets you with a spritzy bite (courtesy ol a touch of residual CO2) followed by waves of spice and garrigue herb-laden fresh red and black fruits, pickled beetroot, mixed herbs and allspice. With ripe, tea-like tannins, ample acidity and a long, gently spicy finish, this wine just about has it all. And whilst remarkably easy to drink now, it can only get better and better, over the next 10 years. An absolutely classic Languedoc Carignan!
 

Price:  £19.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine de La Garance Extra Virgin Olive Oil (50cl bottle)
Domaine de La Garance Olive Oil
Region Caux, a few km north-west of Pézenas

Style Soft, fruity, gently nutty/peppery
Variety 100% Arbequine
Bottle size 50 cl
Food Salads, crudités, cold cuts, fruit salads
Use by Use over the next year or so
The Arbequine (Arbequina) olive variety originates from Catalonia and is best known for the excellent extra virgin olive oil it produces. The olives for this oil are grown on the Domaine de La Garance estate in Caux, reflecting winemaker Pierre Quinonero's Spanish heritage. This cold-pressed, un-filtered extra virgin oil is beautifully soft and fruity, with an earthy, gently nutty flavour and a pleasantly peppery finish. Perfect for salads, crudités and cold cuts, or just for dipping bread. Also excellent as a dressing, mixed with balsamic vinegar (or a good wine vinegar) - 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar.
 

Price:  £11.50

Quantity:


Domaine Gayda Flying Solo Grenache-Syrah 2014 IGP Pays d'Oc
Domaine Gayda Flying Solo Red 2014
Vintage
2014

Region IGP Pays d'Oc - sourced from various parts of Languedoc
Colour/Style Dry red - medium bodied
Grapes 60% Grenache, 40% Syrah
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.0%
Food Red or white meats, cold cuts, grilled veg, pasta, cheese
Next day
Still good, retains freshness
Drink Now to 2018
With a heady waft of red and black summer fruits, freshly-baked bread, herbs, spices and notes of damp earth and tobacco, this really hits the spot. The palate is simply crammed full of summer fruit and orange flavours, with juicy acidity and earthy but ripe tannins. Medium weight and a delight to drink, it is very much in the mould of a good Cru Beaujolais, but with deeper, more intense flavours and fruit so chunky you can almost bite it. A really delicious all-rounder, and great value for money.
 

Price:  £7.75 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


Domaine Gayda Syrah 2013 IGP Pays d'Oc
Gayda Syrah 2013
Vintage
2013

Region IGP Pays d'Oc - sourced from various parts of Languedoc
Colour/Style Dry red - medium-bodied
Grapes 100% Syrah
Alcohol (a.b.v)
13.0%
Food On its own or with red or white meats, pizza, pasta
Next day
Even better
Drink Now, or over the next 3 to 5 years
From limestone in La Liviniere and sandstone on the Gayda estate. 10% is aged in 1, 2 and 3 year-old barrels, the remainder in stainless steel. A nose of bramble, blackcurrant, raspberry, violets and fresh bread, with hints of tobacco, allspice, citrus-infused pot-pourri and iodine adding more complexity. This is a lot of wine for the money. Spicy, tangy redcurrant and cranberry flavours, with supple tannins and citrussy acidity. There are some very subtle savoury notes, but more in the way of lapsang tea, herbs and tar, with a nice hit of sweet damson giving a touch of richness to an otherwise tangy, sprightly wine, very much in the northern Rhône style. A really lovely wine, to drink now or keep for a year or three.
 

Price:  £8.99 (Including: VAT at 20%)

Quantity:


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Minimum order value, delivery charges, times and restrictions
We deliver only to UK and Northern Ireland addresses. The minimum order value is £75 (plus the delivery charge). You may of course choose a mix of any wines in our range. Orders between £75 and £200: delivery charge is £7.50. Orders over £200: delivery is free! (If your order is over £200, please remember to change the delivery charge in checkout to £0.00). Please note: Delivery to non-mainland addresses (Scottish Highlands and Islands, Northern Ireland, Isle of Man, Isle of Wight, etc.) is usually possible, but may not be on a next-working-day basis. It is also more expensive than delivery to mainland addresses, so will be charged at cost (for orders under £200) but with a small discount for orders over £200 - please call us for a quote.

Warning - you must be aged 18 or over
It is an offence to purchase or attempt to purchase alcohol if you are under the age of 18. (Section 149 Licensing Act 2003).We reserve the right to seek proof of age. Leon Stolarski says "drink less, but drink better!" Please consume alcohol in moderation.