National Press

National Wine Press

  • Stag's Leap on Sunday Brunch

     SLV Cabernet Sauvignon, Stag's Leap Wine Cellars 2011

    Sunday 5th July: To celebrate American Independence day, Karina Elias, beverage director at Grosvenor House Hotel picks 3 bottles to change your perception of American wines.

  • Wines In The Press

    Wines In The Press

    The independent on Sunday praises Crossroads:

    The Independent on Sunday’s Terry Kirby selected his wine of the week for Sunday lunch, Crossroads Winemakers Selection Cabernet Franc 2012. The wine is currently on offer as part of our New Zealand Promotion, so get it while you can...

    “A superlative offering from a small, carefully managed concern in New Zealand's Hawke's Bay, using grapes grown on the fabled, ancient Gimblett Gravels riverbed. Fresh, blackberry fruits, a touch of mint and some spice: satisfying and elegant. Goes well with all lighter roast meats.”

    Parker Points for Prosecco....Ruggeri style:

    Robert Parker has given top scores to Ruggeri for two Proseccos from the current 2013 vintage - a sure sign that high quality Proseccos are starting to be appreciated for their unique style and finesse:

    “The excellent 2013 Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore Giustino B. Extra Dry is dedicated to Giustino Bisol, the man who founded Ruggeri in 1950. Fruit is sourced from some of the highest altitude vineyards in the appellation and consequently shows an extra degree of crispness and bright sharpness. The aromas are clean and fragrant with white flower and sweet citrus in center stage. I have experimented [with] the aging capacity of Giustino B. and have found that the wine does remain intact for three years or more. As it ages, it gains more aromas of candied orange and butterscotch.”

    92 points.  Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate

    “The 2013 Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore Vecchie Viti Brut is made from the oldest vines (some more than a century old) found in the Valdobbiadene territory. This is a fantastic expression that boasts an outstandingly high level of brightness and definition. Drying mineral notes create contours for mildly fragrant layers of peach and blanched almond. The wine should hold for a few more years although it is best consumed in the immediate term.”

    91 points. Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate

    By Chris Penwarden

  • Olly Smith’s Smashing Royal Wines

    Wines In The Press

    Olly Smith press review

    Olly Smith’s column this weekend featured three wines that are available through Great Western Wine – a fizz, a rosé and a red – what a hat trick!

    Olly was on board P&O Cruises’ new ship Britannia with the Queen, who was busy smashing bottles of fizz against the ship for its launch. Also in attendance were some of his fellow P&O Cruises’ ‘Food Heroes’, including James Martin, Marco Pierre White, Atul Kochhar and Eric Lanlard. His weekend wine recommendations are some of the most popular lines available on board...

    Peller Ice Cuvée Sparkling (Vidal Dosage) NV

    “This Canadian fizz had been plumped out with a jot of luscious ice wine, which gives a beautiful fruity buzz to this outstanding bubbly.”

    Château Sainte Marguerite, Grande Réserve, Organic Rosé, Cru Classé 2014

    “Elegant, understated and delicate in colour, this southern French pink is packed with summery flavours.”

    Quinta Do Crasto, Douro Red 2013

    “An outstanding blend of local Portuguese reds. This is both scented and spicy and the ultimate red wine for a barbecue.”

    By Chris Penwarden

  • Hot Off The Press: Matthew Jukes Wine of the Week

    Wines In The Press

    Matthew JukesMatthew Jukes recently posted this amazing review of Santadi’s Terre Brune 2010 for MoneyWeek.

    To summarise: “This is the finest red I have ever tasted from Sardinia and it is also my favourite Carignan in the world.” Praise indeed!

    See below for Matthew's full review, or check out the original post for MoneyWeek on his website righthere.

    2010 Terre Brune, Santadi, Sardinia, Italy 

    2010 Terre Brune, Santadi

    There is a brilliant Italian restaurant in Lower Sloane Street, London SW1 called Caraffini.  Always packed with locals, this is not a trendy Italian newcomer but an elegant institution with superb, classic dishes, the finest service in London and also a lovely, short wine list.  Every single time I have been there (over two decades!) I have ordered Rocca Rubia – a spectacular and eminently affordable Carignan from Sardinia.

    “The other day I tasted Rocca Rubia’s ‘tre bicchieri’ (the highest award in the Italian wine guide, Gambero Rosso) big brother, Terre Brune. This is old vine Carignano with a dash of a local grape called Bovaleddu. This is the finest red I have ever tasted from Sardinia and it is also my favourite Carignan in the world.  The level of bravado, flair and flamboyance on show in this inky red wine is staggering and it is already drinking beautifully.”

    Jukes goes on to highlight some other personal favourites from the Tre Bicchieri-awarded wines in Great Western Wine’s portfolio, adding “they are all epic.”

    2013 Fiano di Avellino Bechar

    2013 Vecchie Viti Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore, Ruggeri

    2010 Barolo Cannubi, E. Pira

  • Olly Smith's Pick Of The Bunch

    Wines In The Press

    ‘Top Red’ for Planeta

    Olly Smith, Mail Online, 31 January 2015:

    Planeta Santa CeciliaLast week Olly selected Planeta Santa Cecilia 2010 as his ‘Top Red’ in the Mail’s ‘Pick of the Bunch’ round up: “A red bursting with black cherry and pomegranate fruit with a discreet aniseed awesomeness.”

    Santa Cecilia is Planeta’s benchmark red made from local grape Nero d’Avola. The grapes are sourced from the white soils and ancient vines of Noto in the southernmost corner of Sicily. This is the birthplace of the variety, and now the epicentre for its production.

    Another of Planeta’s wines – this time a white - was recommended as a top pick to ‘drink with da fishes’:

    “Fiano is a grape that creates plumper whites; try if Chardonnay is your usual tipple. Planeta is a quality winery worth looking out for. Its Cometa Fiano 2013 (13.5 per cent) is thrillingly poised between peach and pineapple and great with seafood.”

    Planeta has been instrumental in changing the way wine is produced in Sicily: Previously Sicily’s wine producers concentrated on quantity rather than quality, but it was the vision of Diego Planeta that changed all that.

    Planeta, Cometa

    He began to plant experimental plots of vines in the mid-1980s – some international grapes like Chardonnay and Merlot, and a selection of local grapes that had fallen out of fashion.

    After extensive research, Diego established the specific terroirs for indigenous grapes like Nero d’Avola, Carricante and Fiano. With the help of his daughter, Francesca, and Nephew, Alessio, he has now created six wineries in different parts of Sicily that serve to highlight these varied terroirs.

    As Olly says, “be quick – over the next decade, prices will rise like the sun”: Right now these Sicilian wines offer quality and value “you can't refuse”...

    By Chris Penwarden

  • Hot Off The Press

    Great Western Wine - Wines in the press

    Victoria Moore followed up last week’s Telegraph article on Lebanon’s booming wine trade with a hand-picked selection of her favourite wines, including mentions of two from Great Western Wine’s Ixsir.

    Ixsir Altitudes WhiteIxsir Altitudes Blanc 2014, Lebanon

    “Ixsir also makes a good red syrah-cabernet blend, more international in style than the Tourelles – the 2010 Reserve is in GWW’s sale – but I really liked this white. A blend of muscat (40 per cent), viognier, sauvignon and semillon, it’s floral but not OTT. Char-grilled swordfish and salty fried fish are its friend.” Victoria Moore, The Telegraph, 19th January 2015

    While we wait for the 2014, the 2013 is reduced to £12.95, so it’s a great time to buy some of this delicious white.  Victoria also mentioned the magnificent Ixsir Grande Reserve Red 2010 – reduced by over a fiver to £17.50 - a red to savour with next Sunday’s roast.

    The Observer’s David Williams recommended this bright, fun, red Italian fizz  - ideal with a wintery stew or bolognaise

    Cantina Cleto Chiarli, Pruno NeroCantina Cleto Chiarli, Pruno Nero NV, Italy

    “How to approach wine post Christmas excess? Some of us give up for a month, but there are better times for abstinence than the dark days of January. I prefer the frisson of transgressive pleasure that that comes with drinking styles that feel slightly inappropriate amid the austerity. Sparkling wines, for example, whether a decent, budget-friendly white fizz … or, to go with the season’s meaty stews, Chiarli’s vivid, ripe black cherry-filled sparkling Italian red, with its soft mousse and gentle tannic grip.”  David Williams, The Observer, 4th January 2015

    Lastly, Decanter magazine featured this fresh and fruity white from the one of the country’s best producers  – a nice change to Kiwi Sauvignon Blanc, and a lovely match for spicy Thai dishes.

    Yealands Estate Pinot GrisYealands Estate Pinot Gris 2013, New Zealand

    “Made by winemaker Tamra Kelly-Washington who has previously worked in Australia, Italy and California, this is a pungent style of Pinot Gris with notes of apricot and quince on the nose. The palate is elegant and fresh, with flavours of watermelon and a pinch of ginger spice.” 89/100, Decanter Weekday Wines, February edition 2015.

  • In The Press | Top 3 Australian Cabernet Sauvignons


    The Telegraph | 3 Best Australian Cabernet SauvignonsThe Telegraph | Hamish Anderson

    Wine tasting notes: 3 of the best Australian Cabernet Sauvignons

    Wine expert Hamish Anderson gives the Heartland Cab Sauv a great review in his latest article including it in his top 3 choices from down under.

    2012 Heartland Cabernet Sauvignon, Langhorne Creek/Limestone Coast, £13.50

    "This is a richer style, without being overblown. The fruit is dark and ripe, balanced by freshening bursts of peppermint and spice. This tastes significantly grander than its price tag, and will develop over the next five years."

    Read it here: Telegraph wine review

  • IWC 2014 Awards are out

    The International Wine Challenge 2014 results have been released this week and here at GWW we're celebrating because we actually have more than last year. Below is a selection of wines that have taken home the Gold and Silver medals.


    Unanime, La Mascota Estate 2009
    "Young brooding style, currently oaky, but also a wealth of berry and blackcurrant fruit, with a savoury tinge. Give it time to come out of its exuberant youth."

    Camel Valley, Cornwall Rose Brut 2012
    "Really individual English style in the best possible way. Characteristic aromas of hedgerows and apple orchards, leading to a focussed, well balanced palate and a pure, refreshing finish. Mouth-watering."

    Continue Reading

  • Peter Richards MW - Top Ten Chilean Wines

    Leyda Syrah Reserva, Leyda Valley 2011


    A great write up from Peter Richards MW for my wine of the week.

    "What I love most about this wine is the way it combines amazing freshness with complexity. Notes of roasted meat, dark fruit, black pepper lead into a dense yet refreshing flavour profile that is savoury, elegantly textured and wonderfully persistent. My high mark also rewards this wine’s exceptional consistency and value for money."

    5/5 Peter Richards MW

    Top Ten Chilean Wines

  • More good write ups from this weekends press

    The Observer - David Williams
    Heartland Stickleback Red, South Australia, 2009
    Sumptuous but not overbearing red-fruited blend


    The Guardian - Fiona Beckett
    Yealands Estate PGR 2013 
    Zippy freshness; exotic character


    Mail on Sunday - Olly Smith
    Peller Ice Wine Cuvee Sparkling NV, Canada
    Fruity, frothy, golden and glorious

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