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Hard To Find Wines

  • Spring wines for all occasions

    With the return of spring bulbs and cherry blossoms and longer days, comes a shift in what we like to drink. Spring is a tough time of year for wine choices. Some days it’s warm and whites and roses are the wine of choice and other days it’s like winter is holding on and you really want a glass of red.

    Here is a selection of wines that will get you through this slightly awkward spring season!

    SPARKLING

    Galanti
    Prosecco Extra Dry NV
    £13.99

    A bottle of Galanti Prosecco

    A fine, persistent, soft fizz surrounds a fruit spectrum of apple, pear with a hint of peach. This extra dry Prosecco from Galanti in Veneto, offers a quality sparkling wine at great value for money. Produced using the traditional grape variety in the region, Glera, this is a great wine for spring parties.

    WHITE BLENDS

    GlenWood
    Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2016
    £10.99

    A bottle of GlenWood Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2015

    This Bordeaux style blend of Sauvignon Blanc with its higher acidity and prominent passion fruit and Semillon with its weight and structure produces a refreshing white for warmer spring days. Pairing well with a BBQ or lighter dishes like grilled fish or goats cheese, this blend of 50% Sauvignon Blanc and 50% Semillon works equally well on its own.

    GlenWood produces two other Sauvignon Blanc Semillon blends: GlenWood Vigneron’s Selection Semillon Sauvignon Blanc and GlenWood Grand Duc Semillon Sauvignon Blanc.

    Mont Rochelle
    Little Rock Blanc 2015
    £11.99

    A bottle of Mont Rochelle Little Rock Blanc 2015

    Blended using four different grapes: Semillon, Viognier, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, The Little Rock Blanc is a very fresh, clean wine, ideal for spring. Pale straw green in colour with a delicate peach and citrus profile, the wine is elegant with balanced texture and acidity. A great wine for everyday enjoyment!

    ALBARIÑO

    Qunita do Ermizio
    Vinha do Bouca 2016
    £12.99

    A bottle of Quinta Vinha da Bouca

    A different and very mineral single varietal Alvarinho. A delicate bouquet combined with a soft and fresh palate developing fruit and mineral hints. Good structure and mouth-filling with a long a clean finish. This is a wine with a refreshingly and harmonious aftertaste. This wine pairs well with fish or light meat dishes.

    ROSE

    Haute Cabriere
    Pierre Jourdan Tranquille NV
    £8.99

    A bottle of Pierre Jourdan Tranquille wine

    The fragrant bouquet introduces a wine with a fine fruit and dry finish. The colour is a slight blush of pink, to be expected, as it relates to the Pinot Noir component of the blend. Tranquille displays an extended after taste, giving the imbiber the opportunity to contemplate and enjoy the wine whilst the flavours linger on the palate.

    Bladen
    Pinot Rose 2017
    £13.99

    Bladen Rose 2016

    Salmon-blush with a pink hue. Lifted red fresh fruit notes, such as strawberry and raspberry on the nose with a touch of thyme and fresh herbs adding to the complexity. Juicy watermelon and fresh summer fruits on the palate, with a hint of creaming soda. The palate is crisp and refreshing, with a dry finish.

    REDS

    Haute Cabriere
    Unwooded Pinot Noir 2016
    £11.99

    A bottle of Haute Cabriere Unwooded Pinot Noir

    A light fruity red, with a vibrant colour and fresh strawberry nose, perfect for spring. Totally unwooded allowing the fresh soft red fruits to emerge, an ideal summer red which can be served slightly chilled.

    Visit our website to make your selection today from our wide range.

  • Twenty Twelve Wines - a Mallorcan experience

    Hard To Find Wines welcomes Twenty Twelve Wines by Es Fangar, the oldest estate on Mallorca, to our selection this week.

    The Eisenmann family bought Es Fangar in 2000. They have been reconstructing and replanting the land since. Currently, the reclaimed land stands at 1,000 ha, making Es Fangar the Balearics’ largest ecological finca, or estate.

    The vineyards at Es Fangar constitute 56 ha, planted with Mallorcan varieties
    Prensal, Giró Blanc, Callet, Manto Negro and Gargollassa and international varieties Chardonnay, Viognier, Muscat, Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. Another 400 ha of the estate are left as natural grassland which suits a wide variety of flora and fauna, including tortoises, rabbits, wild goats and a multitude of birds.

    Biodiversity and sustainability

    Es Fangar has full organic certification and makes use of an unusual biological agent to help with the vineyards: bees. Beehives are scattered throughout the estate, 22 colonies in total! The bees are partial to the grape juice and any punctured grapes that would otherwise mould, are hollowed out by the six colonies that live near the vineyards.

    The Es Fangar bees are treated with great care by apiculturists who support the hives in a number of ways. Honey remains in the hives as food for the bees and to ensure their immune systems remain strong. Water is provided by drinking troughs. Even homeopathic treatments are provided!

    Innovations in winemaking

    Quality is a big factor in Es Fangar's winemaking processes. There are a number of different ways that Es Fangar has approached making improvements to their winemaking processes to ensure their organic grapes and, in turn, their wines are of the best possible quality.

    To prevent loss of quality during the harvest, Es Fangar has tailor-made a solution. An electrified monorail system has been created to transport the handpicked grapes into the tanks in the condition they were picked.

    Es Fangar uses organic, plant and clay-based methods of fining. This makes the process more difficult for the winemaker, but produces a better quality wine that tastes better. This also makes Twenty Twelve wines perfect for vegans!

    All these and other steps such as timing viticultural events to the lunar calendar, ensure very carefully produced quality wines. Purchase your bottles today through the Hard To Find Wines website, by clicking on the links below.

    Es Fangar
    Twenty Twelve Pink 2016
    £14.99

    A bottle of Twenty Twelve Pink 2016

    This unconventional rosé, blended from Callet, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot and Manto Negro, is crisp, dry and bursting with berries and spice. A clean and bright strawberry red colour. On the nose, fresh, red fruits through to red flowers with a mineral background on the finish. Once left to breathe, steeped fruits and spices emerge. The palate is fresh and fruity with good acidity, medium-bodied with red fruit notes, juicy, with a medium to long finish.

    Es Fangar
    Twenty Twelve White 2016
    £14.99

    A bottle of Twenty Twelve White 2016

    A floral explosion dominates this aromatic, dry aperitif, blended from Muscat, Viognier and Prensal. An attractive, pale yellow wine that is clean, bright and clear. On the nose, stone fruits, white flowers, honey and balsamic notes.  The spicy background of pink pepper and ginger notes contribute to the abundant array of aromatics. A fresh palate with very good acidity and ripe fruit followed by a sweet, long and generous aftertaste.

    Es Fangar
    Twenty Twelve Black 2016
    £14.99

    A bottle of Twenty Twelve Black 2016

    Berries dominate in this blend of Callet, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Gorgollasa and Manto Negro. An impressive cherry red colour with violet tones in this bright, medium depth wine. On the nose, are fruits with violets, black pepper, cloves, and Mediterranean forest aromatics, including thyme and rosemary. The palate is fresh and light, fruity and velvety smooth with ripe tannins and round with a lingering finish.

  • Welcome to Quinta do Ermízio!

    This week, Hard To Find Wines welcomes Quinta do Ermízio, a tiny vineyard producing just 3 handmade whites in the Vinho Verde region of Portugal (40,000 bottles per year in total). Quinta do Ermízio has been passionately producing Alvarinho, Loureiro and Trajadura wines for generations.

    Concept

    Quinta do Ermízio believes that wine profile and character begins in the vineyard. The wine-making technology used in the winery enhances what already exists in the grapes and amplifies the house style. A minimalist wine-making philosophy is used along with no use of oak or low temperature fermentation. The objective is to magnify the expression of the terroir, the character of soil, climate and grape variety on the wine. This allows the style to be maintained while still allowing the differences between each vintage to show through.

    Harvest

    A photo of the harvest at Quinta

    Grapes are hand-picked and transported to the winery in small containers and immediately processed. Grapes from different varieties and vineyard plots are processed individually to either be bottled on their own, to enhance expression of a certain terroir, or they are blended to produce wines according to Quinta style and character.

    Bottle ageing

    Quinta do Ermízio produces wines that age well, in contrast to the usual perception of Vinho Verde wines. Their wines are often better the following year and last for many years in bottle.

    Purchase your bottles today through the Hard To Find Wines website, by clicking on the links below.

    Quinta do Ermízio
    Campo do Porral 2016
    £7.99

    A bottle of Quinta Campo do Porral

    A classic Vinho Verde, a blend of Loureiro and Trajadura, fresh and easy to drink, but expressing the terroir and the character of the grape varieties. An elegant nose, soft and long palate, and clean and fresh finish. Easy drinking with roundness and pleasant mouth feel. To be drunk when young but due to its acidity and structure it can age for a few years. Serve at 8 ºC. Best with a snack or light fish courses. Also very good as an aperitif.

    Quinta do Ermízio
    Vinha do Cuco 2016
    £10.99

    A bottle of Quinta Vinha du Coco

    A blend of 70% Alvarinho and 30% Loureiro, this is a charming wine due to its elegant and distinct nose.  The palate is round and intense, lovely fruit and fresh acidity, with a clean and mineral finish. The combination of a discrete nose with mouth feeling makes this wine very pleasant to drink. Only 10,000 bottles were produced. Serve at 10 ºC directly from the bottle. Best when accompanying an entrée or fish courses.

    Quinta do Ermízio
    Vinha da Bouca 2016
    £12.99

    A bottle of Quinta Vinha da Bouca

    A different and very mineral Alvarinho. Delicate bouquet combined with soft and fresh palate developing fruit and mineral hints. Good structure and mouth-filling with a long a clean finish. This is a wine with a refreshingly and harmonious aftertaste that requires some time to be fully understood. Only 10,000 bottles produced. Serve at 10 ºC directly from the bottle. Best when accompanying fish or light meat.

  • Calling all cricket fans!

    Get on the front foot with this prize draw exclusive to the UK!

    Did you know that First XI Wines are now available for delivery in the UK through Hard To Find Wines?

    The Belter, The Partnership and The Centurion Wines, created by South African cricketers Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers, are available for delivery to your door.

    To celebrate, we have this fantastic prize up for grabs:

    • a cricket bat signed by South African cricketers Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers
    • a case of First XI Wines created by Faf and AB and the team at Infinity Wines.

    Enter our prize draw to stand a chance to win this super cricket prize!

    Click here to enter online or to enter through Facebook.

    Prize draw open to UK residents 18+ only. No purchase necessary. Prize draw closes Sunday, 15 April 2018. See full Terms and Conditions when you enter.

  • First XI Wines: Wines to Bowl You Over

    We took a trip recently to Rickety Bridge in Franschhoek, South Africa to meet Anya Grobler, the woman behind Infinity Wines. Anya introduced us to the First XI Wines and filled us in on the journey the team has taken in creating their wines.

    The story began in 2013. Four friends and legendary cricketing heroes, Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers, Mike Hussey and Stephen Fleming enjoyed a meal together where they discussed a shared vision: to make a wine of excellent quality and craftsmanship.

    Faf introduced the cricketers to Infinity Wines which led to the creation of First XI Wines. All the First XI Wines are made at Rickety Bridge by winemaker Wynand Grobler. The first wine released as a result of this collaboration was the First XI The Belter 2014.

     

    Infinity Wines
    The First XI The Belter 2015
    £14.99

    A bottle of Infinity First XI Wine The Belter 2015

    Hard To Find Wines currently stocks The Belter 2015, a Rhone-style blend of Shiraz, Mourvèdre, Grenache, Cinsault, Tannat and Viognier. Silky soft on the palate with succulent tannins and notes of white pepper, red fruit, chocolate and cherry tobacco on the nose, the wine was matured in small French oak barrels for 15 months. All grapes used to make this wine were hand-picked. The Belter is a very accessible, good quality wine with good aging ability. Only 6,000 bottles were produced.

    Enjoy The Belter with ostrich or beef carpaccio, duck, venison and rump steak with pepper sauce.

    Infinity Wines
    The First XI The Partnership 2015
    £19.99

    A bottle of Infinity First XI The Partnership 2015

    The First XI The Partnership is the flagship of the First XI Wines. It is an intriguing, multi-dimensional, Bordeaux-style blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. It shows great concentration and length with pureness and focus on the palate. A red fruit driven wine with silky but present tannins shape, the wine spends 20 months in oak barrels. Only 4,000 bottles were produced.

    The Partnership pairs well with a slow roasted leg of lamb.

    Infinity Wines
    The First XI The Centurion 2015
    £35.00

    A bottle of Infinity First XI Wines The Centurion 2015

    The First XI The Centurion is a single varietal Cinsault, irresistible and well-balanced with bright, ruby-red hues. This wine is produced from old, unirrigated bushvines planted in 1954, selected for unique, prominent terroir flavours.  Only 10% of the wine was aged in older French oak barrels with the rest being stored in stainless steel tanks. The resulting wine presents aromas of cherry, red berry, white pepper and some spicy notes on the nose and savoury, spice and fruit flavours complimented by freshness and subtle oaking on the palate.

    An ideal pairing for The Centurion is roasted springbok or venison loin.

    Competition time!

    A photo of a cricket bat signed by South African cricketers Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers alongside a promotional wine container for First XI Wines

    In celebration of the arrival of First XI Wines in the UK, through Hard To Find Wines, for two weeks only, we have this fantastic prize up for grabs:

    1. a cricket bat signed by South African cricketers Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers
    2. a case of First XI Wines created by Faf and AB and the team at Infinity Wines.

    Enter our prize draw to stand a chance to win this super prize! Click here to enter online: https://gleam.io/cCqTI/hard-to-find-wines-first-xi-wines-competition or to enter through Facebook: https://gleam.io/fb/cCqTI.

    Prize draw open to UK residents only. You must be over 18 to enter. No purchase necessary. Prize draw closes Sunday, 15 April 2018. See full Terms and Conditions when you enter.

  • Last Minute Easter Wine Offers

    Easter is nearly upon us!

    And with Easter comes not only copious amounts of chocolate, Easter bunnies and fluffy little chicks, but also time spent with family and friends over meals.

    Hard To Find Wines' Mark Davies has handpicked the wines listed below as the perfect accompaniments to your Easter meals.

    Please remember to order by 1pm on Wednesday 28 March to avoid disappointment in receiving your delivery.


     

     

    BOEKENHOUTSKLOOF
    The Chocolate Block 2016
    Franschhoek, South Africa

    Now £18.50
    Was £20.50

    berk_choc_block_web

    The Boekenhoutskloof winery produces limited quantities of it's famous Chocolate Block wine. An intricate blend of five grape varieties including Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Grenache Noir and Cinsault. The wine is Syrah led and as the name suggests shows a beautiful richness of Mocha, chocolate and blackberries along with a fresh spiced black pepper. Smooth and luxurious, this wine is ready to drink, although will benefit from some ageing also.

    LARRY CHERUBINO
    Ad Hoc Hen and Chicken Chardonnay 2016
    Pemberton, Western Australia

    Now £12.99
    Was £13.99

    A bottle of Larry Cherubino Ad Hoc Hen and Chicken Chardonnay 2016

    Aromas of melon, citrus and minerals, follow through on the palate. A creamy mouth feel, with a generous palate structure and a clean acid backbone. The fruit was hand-picked, whole bunch pressed, fermented with natural yeasts and aged in new and 2 year old French oak for 8 months with 80% undergoing malolactic fermentation.

    RABBIT RANCH
    Pinot Gris 2011
    Central Otago, New Zealand

    Now £15.49
    Was £17.99

    A bottle of Rabbit Ranch Pinot Gris 2011

    The Rabbit Ranch Pinot Gris is a soft cuddly Gris, with peachy flavours and a furry tail! A core mineral acidity followed by an off dry finish. A medium wine excellent on its own, or with delicate fish dishes.

    VERGENOEGD
    Runner Duck Red 2014
    Stellenbosch, South Africa

    Now £8.50
    Was £9.99

    A bottle of Vergenoegd Runner Duck Red

    Plums and currants with cinnamon and nutmeg and a hint of pencil shavings on the nose. The palate is smooth and balanced with blackberries, cherries and a hint of Christmas pudding. This wine is an excellent accompaniment to beef and poultry, especially duck. This red can be slightly chilled or even decanted to further soften the tannins.

    VERGENOEGD
    Runner Duck Rose 2016
    Stellenbosch, South Africa

    Now £8.50
    Was £9.99

    A bottle of Vergenoegd Runner Duck Rose 2016

    Fresh strawberries and icecream, candy floss and toffee apple on the nose. Strawberries, melon, banana and plum on the palate with a lingering aftertaste. This Rose is enjoyed best with a variety of poultry dishes, carpaccio, light Asian curries and sushi.

    VERGENOEGD
    Runner Duck White 2017
    Stellenbosch, South Africa

    Now £8.50
    Was £9.99

     

    A bottle of Vergenoegd Runner Duck White 2017
    Fresh green apple, hints of pineapple, guava and soft citrus undertone on the nose. The palate is smooth with green apple, lemon and pineapple and a lingering aftertaste. Excellent served with fish, grilled shellfish, salads, sushi and light pasta dishes.

    In addition to these Easter themed wines, there are many others in our warehouse that would be wonderful accompaniments to your Easter meals. Take a look at our website and make sure to place your order before our final orders cut off for Easter delivery of 1pm on Wednesday 28 March 2018 to avoid disappointment.

  • Le Lude Part 1: Where Mathematics & Mystique Meet

    Paul Gerber, winemaker at Le Lude, was teaching mathematics when he got married. “Within a few months of getting married, I convinced my wife to let me go and study oenology at Stellenbosch.”

    When he finished, he specialised in bottle-fermented sparkling wine and worked in Northern Italy, Champagne in France and Germany. On his return to South Africa he did an internship at Graham Beck. This is where he met Nic and Ferda Barrows in 2011.

    The Barrows bought a property in Franschhoek, and they had a very specific vision of creating a specialist Methode Cap Classique cellar. They offered Paul a job and the rest is history.

    Le Lude is a real family affair. The interiors are done by Ferda and the Barrow’s one daughter, Olga, an interior designer. Their other daughter, Nicolene, trained as a chef in Europe and worked in London at La Gavroche for two years before returning and opening Orangerie, the restaurant at Le Lude.

    The Le Lude Approach

    Paul takes a traditional approach to making sparkling wine and uses all the traditional cultivars, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier.  He says, “I don’t see Champagne or for that matter Cap Classique that comes from various areas losing terroir identity. It’s everything but: each component brings something specific to the blend and therein maintaining terroir. The bigger definition of terroir encompasses the philosophy from the region, from the winemaking family and that’s all so much more than just a piece of soil. I think terroir is much deeper than just the soil and we need to see it as this more complex matrix, together.”

    “For me the characteristics in Champagne and bottle-fermented sparkling wine are the length of the wine, the texture on the palate, the finesse and the elegance of the wine. It’s not a big wine. White wines, red wines, they’re the extroverts of the wine world. They give you a lot, whereas Champagne, there’s a bit of mystique there. The nose gives you complexity, but it’s not an exuberant aroma. And the same on the palate. It should start softly and build and that complexity is built with many fine layers. Almost like little pieces of rice paper, that together make something big and full but on their own as they lift up they pull away easily. That is how we see this style of wine.”

    A photo of the view of Franschhoek and vineyards from Le Lude

    Paul told us about how his background in mathematics has influenced his approach to producing Le Lude’s wines. “Cap Classique is a process driven wine and in some way mathematics is process driven. It’s about solving problems, having a systematic approach to doing that. These wines love that. It’s not just about ticking the boxes, it’s about ticking the little boxes in between those boxes. Every decision you make in the vineyard, every decision in the winery has an impact on the bubble that’s going to rise in the glass one day. If you keep that in mind, it means that you look at the wine completely differently when going through the process.”

    When asked about the difference between Champagne and South African MCC, Paul said, “With South African Cap Classique, you should taste the ripeness and fullness. This gives the wine texture and persistence but at the same time it remains elegant with finesse.”

    “Pieter Ferreira of Graham Beck says you can taste the sun in the fruit. You taste the ripeness in the Pinot Noir and the Chardonnay in South African grapes but you still want the finesse of the wine. That’s the characteristics that we see as important for Champagne: finesse, elegance, length. And we want to have all of those ripe fruit characters because that’s our terroir. In Champagne you’re going to have fresh lemon, lime, fresh zesty character. Here you’re going to have a little bit more lemon meringue, or creamy lemon tart. So you are still going to have that ripe, rich flavour, but it’s just that little bit riper.”

    Non-vintage Wines

    Le Lude Brut NV

    A bottle of Le Lude Brut

    The Brut is a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The idea behind the Brut is to highlight the character of the Chardonnay. A little Pinot Noir is added to give a bit of width and density to the palate.

    Tasting notes: elegant citrus blossoms with fresh lime aromas and secondary aromas of nougat, roasted nuts and hints of proving dough. Bright, fresh and elegant palate entry. Aromas of grapefruit, ripe lemon and pear forms a structured mid-palate. The mousse shows finesse and texture with a restrained presence. Length develops delicately on the palate with fine tertiary aromas of caramelised honey, vanilla and dried fig.

    Le Lude Rose NV

    A bottle of Le Lude Rose

    The Brut Rose is to display the character of the Pinot Noir. Paul uses a little Chardonnay in the blend for brightness. The Rose is bigger, fuller, softer and a little more robust than the Brut. It is drier than normal Cap Classique rose but it has a lot of strawberries and cream and raspberry notes on the wine without the weight.

    Tasting notes: ripe cherries, red lollipop and raspberry aromas provide a delicate profile to the wine. These are followed by some hints of grapefruit and wild rose. The palate opens with a voluptuous texture supported by elegant acidity. Initially fresh red berries, wild plum and spice. The length and richness of the palate develops a complexity with raspberry compote and hints of blueberries and aniseed.

    Vintage wines

    Le Lude’s first vintage wines were blended in 2012. All vintage wines are the premium selection of the tanks and from the outset the idea was to mature them for at least five years.

    “The agreement has always been the wines are ready to drink today but must show the potential to age. When we blend, we focus on that because I want to be able to sell you a bottle of non-vintage brut and tell you, you can drink this in three years’ time,” said Paul.

    “The vintage wines have been matured but taste pristine so we know we can say for at least the next five years this wine going to mature beautifully. So then you have a wine that’s ten or twelve years old.”

    Le Lude’s first Blanc de Blanc was harvested in 2015. It took three years and nearly four harvests before Paul decided which blocks to use. “This will become Le Lude’s flagship wine and the benchmark for everything we do at Le Lude. But it’s only for release in 2022.”

    Pairing Le Lude Wines

    Sparkling wine is very versatile when paired with food and Le Lude’s wines are no different.

    Paul told us, “Now that we have the vintage wines, we are going to start doing wine dinners. We have seven wines now that you can serve right throughout the dinner; so six courses plus aperitif. This will be a unique experience to show different styles and how they work with different foods yet are not completely dominated.”

    A Photo of pink roses at Le Lude

    The future

    Sparkling wine is becoming very popular due its versatility and often times more affordable alternatives to Champagne such as MCC.

    “The fact that people are drinking a lot more bottle-fermented sparkling wine is fantastic. It’s good for business but it means all of us need to improve our game, improve the quality that we’re producing. It’s the one thing at Le Lude we keep questioning: how can we do something better? What can create a better experience for our guests?” said Paul.

    “And you don’t want to say at any point to yourself, this is good. I think the day that you say that about your own wine, it’s dangerous. I like the idea of thinking there’s always something that I can improve.”


    Keep an eye on our blog, and look out for Le Lude - Part 2 where you will learn more about the beautiful Le Lude, their wonderful restaurant Orangerie, and Lily Pond House, the perfect getaway to include in your next trip to Franschhoek.

     

  • A Celebration of Haute Cabriere's Wines

    Book Now!

    We are really excited to be welcoming Haute Cabriere's cellar master, Takuan von Arnim to the UK this week. He will be hosting two events in celebration of Haute Cabriere's wonderful wines.

    Our London event is sold out, but there are still a few places at our food and wine pairing event this Saturday evening, to be held at our Shropshire tasting room (accommodation options are available).

    Takuan will host a food and wine pairing evening featuring seven of Haute Cabriere's wines paired with a fabulous menu created by Fresh & Lush Ltd.

    Menu

    On arrival
    Pierre Jourdan Blanc de Blancs

    A bottle of Pierre Jourdan Blanc de Blanc

    Freshly baked bread with accompaniments
    Pierre Jourdan Brut NV

    A bottle of Pierre Jourdan Brut by Haute Cabriere

    French onion soup with smoked pancetta and a comté crust
    Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2016

    A bottle of Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2016 wine

    Twice baked cheese soufflé on a bed of grilled vegetables served with a slow roasted tomato vinaigrette
    Pierre Jourdan Tranquille NV

    A bottle of Pierre Jourdan Tranquille wine

    Chimichurri sea bass with preserved lemon rice and spiced vegetable broth
    Haute Cabriere Unwooded Pinot Noir 2016

    A bottle of Haute Cabriere Unwooded Pinot Noir

    Herb crusted rack of local lamb with thyme and garlic fondant potatoes and orange and redcurrant sauce.
    Haute Cabriere Pinot Noir 2013

    A bottle of Haute Cabriere Pinot Noir Reserve wine

    Melktert with Ratafia poached pear and salt caramel shard
    Pierre Jourdan Ratafia NV

    Ratafia-large-1

    Petit fours
    Pierre Jourdan Belle Rose
    A bottle of Pierre Jourdan Belle Rose

    For more information on the event and to purchase tickets, visit our website:

    Accommodation inclusive package
    Event only package

    Or email us on sales@htfwines.co.uk.

    To learn more about Haute Cabriere and their wines, you can view our 3-part series on our blog:

    A Taste of History

    Innovation

    A Sustainable Future

  • In Celebration of Champagne

    February, the month of romance and love, is in full swing. Valentine’s Day, chocolate and Champagne have been featured everywhere this month.

    In the world of wine however, Champagne is only one type of sparkling wine. It’s probably the best known but definitely not the only one. But great Champagne is most often less than affordable. There are however, many affordable options from all around the world that will certainly leave your pocket feeling less strained but still are of good quality!

    Much of the bubbly from outside of Champagne is produced using the same methods and often with the same grape varietals.

    Here are some tips to help you navigate the world of bubbles.

    Tip 1: French Champagne-style Alternatives

    Champagne is not the only region of France producing great bubbly. France has a total of 23 other wine regions producing fabulous sparkling wines such as Crémant d'Alsace, Crémant de Bordeaux, Crémant de Bourgogne, Anjou mousseux AOC and Blanquette de Limoux AOC.

    Tip 2: International Champagne-style Alternatives

    Keep your eyes open for international alternatives. Here is a list of names of non-French wines made using the same traditional methods used to create Champagne around the world:

    - South Africa: Methode Cap Classique

    - Spain: Cava or Espumoso

    - Portugal and Argentina: Espumante

    - Italy: Metodo Classico

    - Germany and Austria: Sekt

    - USA, Australia, etc: Traditional Method or Méthode Champenoise

    There are other sparkling wines such as Prosecco, but this is not made using the same method as Champagne.

    Tip 3: Serve your bubbly at the right temperature

    All sparkling wines should be served between 6 and 8°C. Anything warmer could cause the wine to lose flavour and bubbles too quickly.

    Tip 4: How to open the bottle correctly

    To avoid unnecessary wastage or an F1-style shower, opening the bottle of bubbly correctly is essential. Whilst some, like Takuan von Arnim, Cellar Master at Haute Cabriere are masters in the art of sabrage (opening the bottle using a sabre!), most of us need to use more simple methods to extract a cork!

    A photo of Takuan von Arnim, Cellar Master at Haute Cabriere doing sabotage

    To avoid injury to yourself and your guests, it is necessary to control the release of the cork. There are two ways to do this. The first involves grasping the cork firmly and twisting the bottle slowly. The cork travel upwards as the bottle twists, but you still retain a good deal of control when the cork separates from the bottle. The second method involves loosening the wire cap but not removing it entirely. This aids in keeping additional control.

    Both methods, as long as they are done slowly and with control, will ensure that bubbles are preserved.

    Tip 5: Pouring and serving sparkling wines to preserve bubbles

    In order to maintain effervescence, bubbly should be served in a long flute. It is also very importance to trickle the wine down the side of the glass while tilting at an angle. This ensures more carbon dioxide remains in the wine, enhancing the taste and mouth-feel of the wine.

    Tip 6: Pairing bubbly with food

    The best thing about bubbly is that it is so very versatile. It is no longer primarily a celebratory drink. It can be enjoyed with many different meals. Some ideas include:

    - Brie and other creamy cheeses

    - Salami and prosciutto

    - Seafood such as shellfish, smoked salmon, caviar and calamari.

    - Duck or beef

    - Fruit-based desserts such as tarts and crepes

    - Buttered popcorn

    - Pizza

    Hard To Find Wines stocks a wide range of bubbly. Take a look at our website and make a selection for your next celebration!

    Next week we will take a look at Le Lude, an exquisite Methode Cap Classique producer from Franschhoek in South Africa.

  • Meet the Winemaker: Takuan von Arnim - March 2018

    You are invited to join Takuan von Arnim,
    Cellar Master of Haute Cabriere,
    for two exclusive evenings hosted by
    Hard To Find Wines
    in London and Shropshire in March 2018


    Meet the Cellar Master:

    Thursday, 8 March at High Timber Restaurant in London, EC4V 3PA from 6.30pm.
    For more information and your FREE ticket, CLICK HERE.


    An Evening of Food and Wine with Haute Cabriere:

    Saturday, 10 March at 7.00pm in Shropshire.
    For more information and tickets, CLICK HERE.


    Takuan von Arnim

    A photo of Takuan von Arnim, Cellar Master at Haute Cabriere doing sabotage

    As Cellar Master at Haute Cabriere, Takuan forges an innovative path in an age-old industry, a path pioneered by his father, Achim von Arnim under the philosophy of Sun Soil Vine Man.

    The understanding that sun and soil, work together with the vine to produce great wine, with man gently and respectfully orchestrating these elements as they create the eventual outcome and expression of the vintage, is best summed up by Haute Cabriere's statement "Great wines are grown."

    For more information on Haute Cabriere's wines, follow this link.


    Venues

    Meet the Cellar Master
    Thursday, 8 March 2018 at 6.30pm in London

    An evening of wine tasting and canapés hosted by Takuan, showcasing the full range of Haute Cabriere wines.

    The evening will be held at High Timber Restaurant, 8 High Timber Street, London EC4V 3PA starting at 6.30pm.

    For more information and complimentary tickets, CLICK HERE.

    An Evening of Food and Wine with Haute Cabriere
    Saturday, 10 March 2018 at 7.00pm in Shropshire

    High Grosvenor, our beautiful, newly-renovated, 16th Century Tudor

    Starting at 7.00pm, Takuan will introduce Haute Cabriere's wines paired with a carefully planned and prepared seven-course meal, designed by Fresh & Lush.

    The evening will be held at Hard To Find Wines' Tasting Room with accommodation available in our beautiful, recently renovated 16th Century Tudor house, High Grosvenor, for those who would like the option of accommodation on-site or at nearby Davenport House's cottages.

    Transfers to and from the function for those staying overnight will be offered.

    For more information and tickets, CLICK HERE.

    Hard To Find Wines tasting room at High Grosvenor


    Menu

    Fresh and Lush Ltd have created an exquisite seven-course menu that perfectly complements Haute Cabriere's wines

    On arrival
    Pierre Jourdan Blanc de Blancs

    Freshly baked bread with accompaniments
    Pierre Jourdan Brut NV

    French onion soup with smoked pancetta and a comté crust
    Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2016

    Twice baked cheese soufflé on a bed of grilled vegetables served with a slow roasted tomato vinaigrette
    Pierre Jourdan Tranquille NV

    Chimichurri sea bass with preserved lemon rice and spiced vegetable broth
    Haute Cabriere Unwooded Pinot Noir 2016

    Herb crusted rack of local lamb with thyme and garlic fondant potatoes and orange and redcurrant sauce.
    Haute Cabriere Pinot Noir 2013

    Melktert with Ratafia poached pear and salt caramel shard
    Pierre Jourdan Ratafia NV

    Petit fours
    Pierre Jourdan Belle Rose


    Tickets

    Meet the Cellar Master
    Thursday, 8 March 2018 - London
    For your free ticket, CLICK HERE.

    An Evening of Food and Wine with Haute Cabriere
    Saturday, 10 March 2018 - Shropshire
    For tickets and more information CLICK HERE.

    Food and Wine Package - £90
    Food and Wine with B&B Accommodation at High Grosvenor - £185 per person
    Food and Wine with Accommodation only at Davenport Cottages -  £185 per person or £160 per person if 2 couples sharing a cottage
    Transfers to and from the function for those staying overnight will be offered

    FOR ALL TICKET OPTIONS, PLEASE CLICK HERE.


    For tickets and enquiries, please email sales@htfwines.co.uk.

    Do not delay! Spaces are limited.


    High Grosvenor House logo

    Fresh & Lush logo

     

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