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Tag Archives: chardonnay

  • Christmas Wine Pairing

    Which wines will you be serving?

    We spend a lot of time preparing for Christmas lunch or dinner. Here are some Christmas wine pairing suggestions for the Christmas celebrations to save you time wondering which wines to serve.


     

    Aperitif

    Pol Roger Brut Champagne NV
    £39.00

    A bottle of Pol Roger Champagne

    Champagne or Sparkling Wine is a very accommodating wine and can be served as an aperitif or with any course of your menu.

    The Brut Réserve is a blend in equal parts of the three champenois grape varieties: Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay. Served at Prince William and Prince Harry's weddings, Pol Roger is very reasonably priced at £39 per bottle. Available in a gift box.


     

    Turkey

    GlenWood Grand Duc Chardonnay 2015
    £40.00

    A bottle of GlenWood Grand Duc Chardonnay 2015

    Beautifully crafted with pure and precise flavours of yellow stone fruit, dried mango, nuts and vanilla. A crisp elegant structure with a long lingering soft finish. Full oaking but integrated perfectly.


     

    Gammon

    Larry Cherubino Ad Hoc Cruel Mistress Pinot Noir 2016
    £17.99

    A bottle of Larry Cherubino Ad Hoc Cruel Mistress Pinot Noir 2016

    A light Pinot with sweet clove and black cherry aromas. Sweet spice, smoky, leather and black plum flavours on the palate, all beautifully balanced.


     

    Fish

    Orange River Chenin Blanc 2018
    £7.49

    orange_chenin_web

    A pale yellow hue with a subtle green tinge. Dry white offering delicious flavours of pear, litchi and guava. Very easy drinking and smooth.


     

    Dessert

    Chateau Filhot Grand Cru Classe Sauternes 2009 (375ml)
    £23.50

    A bottle of Chateau Filhot Grand Cru Classe Sauternes 2009

    A luxurious Sauternes from Bordeaux with a silky mouthfeel, slightly sticky, apricots and peaches, lychee and hints of eucalyptus.


     

    Mixed case

    Luxury Christmas Selection (6 bottles)
    £245.00

    A half case of luxury Christmas wines

    Six bottles are included in this luxury selection of Christmas wines:
    Pol Roger Brut Champagne NV
    Giles Morat Sur La Roche Pouilly Fuisse 2016
    Glenwood Grand Duc Chardonnay 2015
    Robert Mondavi Napa Cabernet Sauvignon 2013
    Caro Baron de Rothschild 2014
    Chateau Filhot Grand Cru Classe Sauternes 2009 (375ml)


     

    If you want to select only one or two wines for your Christmas celebration, we recommend a Pinot Noir and a Sparkling wine. Overall, Pinot Noir pairs well with most light and dark meats and a variety of dishes. And of course, who can enjoy a celebratory meal without Sparkling wine!

  • New Arrivals from South Africa

    Latest arrivals from South Africa include new wines and new vintages from La Couronne and, for our South African cricketing fans, Infinity Wine's The First XI The Belter is back in stock!

    La Couronne

    We welcome some new vintages and also some new wines amongst our new arrivals from La Couronne in Franschhoek. Among the delightful new wines, is their IWC Gold Medal winning Barre Fermented Chardonnay 2016.

    NEW WINE - International Wine Challenge Gold Medal
    La Couronne Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2016

    A bottle of La Couronne Barrel Fermented Chardonnay
    A full, rich, creamy mouthfeel of almonds and vanilla with a lingering aftertaste of smoky peach and citrus.
    £17.99

    NEW WINE
    La Couronne Petit Malbec 2015

    A bottle of La Couronne Le Petit Malbec
    La Couronne Le Petit Malbec is more tannic, with a chewy texture, raisin-
    esque flavours and astringent feel noticeable on the palate.
    £12.99

    NEW WINE
    La Couronne Limited Release Pinotage 2016

    A bottle of La Couronne Limited Release Pinotage
    A rich full-bodied wine with an earthy aroma coupled with dark fruits. The palate is smooth and succulent, with touches of spice and brambles accompanying dark cherry and blackcurrant flavours.

    £24.99

    NEW WINE
    La Couronne Limited Release Viognier 2016

    A bottle of La Couronne Limited Release Viognier
    Viognier is a vibrant, distinct wine with marmalade, honey, peaches and orange blossom flavours, integrated with subtle toasty French oak aroma. The wine has a creamy mouthfeel with nutmeg and apricot flavours lingering on the aftertaste.
    £22.50

    To shop for these wonderful new wines or new vintages of your favourites, click here.
    New vintages in stock include, amongst others: Merlot 2016, Portside Red 2015 and Upper Deck Chenin Blanc 2018

    Infinity Wines

    The Belter is a very popular wine with our customers. We are delighted to announce that with the arrival of our latest wines is more stock of The Belter 2015. If you haven't tried this wine yet, you really should!

    BACK IN STOCK!
    The First XI The Belter 2015

    A bottle of The First XI The Belter 2015
    This intriguing blend of Syrah, Cinsault, Mourvèdre, Grenache and Tannat is silky soft on the palate with succulent tannins and notes of white pepper, red fruit, chocolate and cherry tobacco on the nose. This wine was matured in small French oak barrels for 15 months and all grapes used to make this wine were picked by hand.
    £15.99

    To try other First XI wines, visit our website here.

  • GlenWood Vineyards' Recent Awards

    On Thursday, 4 October and Saturday, 6 October, DP Burger of GlenWood Vineyards in Franschhoek, South Africa will be hosting events with Hard To Find Wines in celebration of GlenWood's award-winning wines.

    To give some perspective on how excellent their wines are, here are some of GlenWood Vineyards' recent awards.

     


     

     

     Glenwood - Chardonnay - Vigneron's Selection - 2015

    Vigneron’s Selection Chardonnay 2016

    - Decanter World Wine Awards – Silver
    - International Wine and Spirits Competition – Silver
    - South African Wine Index – Platinum (95+)
    - Prescient Chardonnay Report – 92 points
    - Franschhoek Appellation Grand Prestige Status
    - Chardonnay du Monde – Silver
    - Vitis Vinifera – Gold
    - Winemag Chardonnay Report – 92 points

    A bottle of GlenWood Grand Duc Semillon Sauvignon Blanc 2016

    Grand Duc Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc 2016

    - SA Terroir Wine Awards – Best in District
    - Platter’s 4.5* (92 points)

    GlenWood Grand Duc Noblesse NV

    Grand Duc Noblesse 2014

    - Winemag Sweet Wine report – 90 points

    Would you like to learn of previous awards won by GlenWood? Take a look at one of our previous blog posts.

    For more information on our upcoming London and Shropshire GlenWood events, visit our blog here. Book your tickets - don't delay!

  • Hard To Find Wines welcomes Iona Wines!

    Iona Wines, owned by Andrew and Roxy Gunn, is situated at 420m above sea-level in the Elgin Valley in South Africa and is proud to be the coolest vineyard in South Africa.

    Planting began in 1998, with Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot the first vines planted. These were followed by Chardonnay, Semillon and Pinot Noir. Shortly after Iona's first vintage in 2001, they became one of South Africa’s top producers of Sauvignon Blanc.

    Iona’s close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and the prevailing southerly winds result in their grapes ripening up to two months later than other Cape vineyards.

     

    Andrew says, "Wines are made in the vineyard, and the best wines come from cool to moderate temperature climes, with low summer rainfall and low potential soils."

    An aerial view at Iona Wines in Elgin, South Africa

    Sustainable Practices

    To ensure the wines they produce are lively, Iona uses no synthetic fertilisers, snail pellets or insecticides in their vineyards. All compost is created using biodynamic methods and preparations, including manure produced by Iona's five cows!

    Winter cover crops of legumes, oats and clovers grow between the vineyard rows. These are used to nourish and mulch the vineyards in turn.

    Chickens at Iona Wines

    Philosophy

    Owners Andrew and Rozy put all their focus and passion into Iona. Everything is done in-house as a result.

    The team at Iona strives to make wine that "expresses the soils and climate as closely as possible, making use of sustainable farming methods and to maximise the use of natural products in farming and winemaking."

    Wines

    A bottle of Iona One Man Band

    Iona Wines
    One Man Band 2011
    £24.99

    Elegant with ripe, juicy red and black fruit. Lovely white pepper and sweet, exotic spice on the nose. The entry is intense, with underlying cedar wood, followed by a long savoury, earthy finish with fine-grained tannins.
    Shiraz 57%, Merlot 15%, Cabernet Sauvignon 9%, Petit Verdot 9%, Mataro 7%, Viognier 3%.

    A bottle of Iona Sauvignon Blanc

    Iona Wines
    Sauvignon Blanc 2017
    £12.99

    Beautiful purity of limes and ripe gooseberry, with tropical, floral and fine herbal notes, ruby grapefruit and white pear drop on the finish. This cool climate Sauvignon blanc is vibrant, mineral, elegant, balanced and delicate, with a long, layered and complex length.

    A bottle of Iona Chardonnay

    Iona Wines
    Chardonnay 2017
    £19.99

    Stylish and Burgundian with lime and lemon undertones.
    Bright citrus, oyster shell minerality, and a hint of almonds and biscuit brioche on the finish.
    Beautiful floral notes and bright fresh acidity persist.

    A bottle of Iona Pinot Noir

    Iona Wines
    Pinot Noir 2014
    £21.99

    Succulent black cherry aroma, bright but delicate and hints of forest floor, with underlying floral and spicy notes. On the palate, the wine is powerful, with silk-textured length.

    A bottle of Iona Solace Syrah

    Iona Wines
    Solace 2015
    £21.99

    Red berry fruit, spiced with white pepper and floral notes. Supple, intense palate with fine matched by fruit depth.

  • Meet DP Burger of GlenWood: an Interview

    On 4 and 6 October 2018, Hard To Find Wines will welcome DP Burger, Cellar Master of GlenWood Vineyards in Franschhoek, South Africa, to the UK to host two events. One will be hosted in London and the other at High Grosvenor in Shropshire.

    Keep an eye on our social media or sign up for our newsletters to learn more about how to book for these events when details are released.

    In advance of these highly anticipated events, we put a few questions to DP to learn more about him and his history at GlenWood.

    Question: How did you get into the industry?

    My entire time growing up, I was always getting my hands dirty in the soil. I was born and raised on a farm in Franschhoek and as a 4thgeneration French Huguenot, agriculture has always been in my blood. I completed my school career at Boland Agricultural High School in Paarl, where my son, Divan, has just been enrolled. After that, I completed a Diploma in Viticulture at Elsenburg Agricultural College in Stellenbosch. THIS IS WHAT I WAS BORN TO DO.

    Question: Tell us about a highlight you particularly enjoyed at GlenWood?

    Harvesting time is always so fulfilling!!!!!!! This is when everything, all hard work of 11 months, comes together and I can get the feeling of how the wines will turn out. Exciting to say the least.

    Question: How does the unique setting of GlenWood affect the wines you create?

    GlenWood’s terroir brings something extremely unique to the viti- and viniculture processes. We have 6 different soil types on the farm and a microclimate truly unique to this special valley. This all contributes to wines with their own strong characters and is one of the reasons I have been with GlenWood for 27 years. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for any vintner and at present it is all MINE.

    Question: What is special about the way GlenWood creates wines?

    My approach has always been “let the terroir do the work and only guide it through its paces”. I believe in minimal interference and true characteristically vinified wines. As an example, Chardonnay should taste like a Chardonnay you have never tasted before!

    Question: What sets GlenWood wines apart from other wines?

    Again, without hesitation, I will point to our unique terroir which is nowhere to be found, not even 7 kilometres away in the main Franschhoek Valley. I always describe these wines in a single sentence, “you can taste the GlenWood soil in each and every one of them”. Never will I be arrogant to say it is the best in the world, but without hesitation, I will point out that GlenWood Wines are special and unique to only this special little unknown valley near Franschhoek.

    Question: Which is your favourite GlenWood wine? Tell us why.

    An extremely unfair question as I like them all! On a serious note, I get this question a lot and answer as follow, “it all depends on my mood, what am I eating, outside temperature and, most importantly, what do I feel like enjoying”.

    Question: Tell us about a challenging moment in the story of GlenWood and how it was overcome.

    My biggest curveball was on 15 February 2018 when we were struck by a massive hail storm. 80% of our premium Chardonnay, Semillon and Merlot were destroyed, leaving me with the scrapes to vinify. This was truly an ultimate low for me as all the hard work was literarily lying on the ground. We pulled together believing that God had a plan and WOW! The wines we managed to make from these grapes are UNBELIEVABLE, to say the least. Best you get the orders in as there are not many bottles made from the 2018 vintage!

    Question: What about wine are you most passionate?

    Most definitely the entire industry. Wine builds bridges and I have been so privileged to see the world with a bottle of GlenWood in my hands. I have made friends all over the globe and every time we get together there WILL BE WINE INVOLVED! Where do you get such a great job?

    Question: What do you do on your day off?

    As a proud dad, my son Divan just received his Western Province colours for Deep Sea Angling and is now a proud Western Province Angler with me! We spend hours on the ocean fishing on our boat Double D. I am also an Arabian horse fanatic and obtained my Western Province colours earlier this year as an endurance rider. This follows some time after my wife Mariska and daughter Kristie who managed this achievement two years ago already. Life is all about balance and I enjoy my off, away from wine, time.

    Question: What off-the-beaten-track secret can you divulge about Franschhoek for Hard To Find Wines visitors?

    Franschhoek is a fantastic must-visit destination in South Africa! While in this beautiful valley please take the drive down the short gravel road to GlenWood where I promise you an unforgettable food & wine experience! I will be delighted to host you.

    Question: Tell us an unusual or memorable wine tale.

    I started with Alastair Wood on GlenWood in 1991 developing the farm from scratch. Every vine, every pole have some of my sweat on it, which makes the first ever bottle of Chardonnay produced in 2000 a very special bottle of wine. I still have this bottle in my collection and vouched to open it the day I retire from this fantastic farm.

    Question: What’s next for GlenWood?

    We always strive to deliver a personal flavour somewhere along the line. The upcoming season will be something for the books with the NEW Food & Wine Experience offer to be released soon. Good food with excellent wine…………………………..what can beat that?

  • New Arrival: Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2017

    Haute Cabriere's 2017 vintage of their very popular Chardonnay Pinot Noir has just arrived at Hard To Find Wines!

    "The 2017 vintage yielded grapes of outstanding quality, resulting in a beautiful balance of fruit and acidity." says Cellar Master Takuan von Arnim.


     

    Cellar Master's Reflections

    The two noble Burgundian cultivars of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir form the cornerstone of Haute Cabrière’s wine culture.

    Haute Cabrière, situated on the foot of the Franschhoek Pass, was the first winery in South Africa to produce a still wine from Chardonnay and Pinot Noir - a blend traditionally used exclusively for Méthode Cap Classique and Champagne. Chardonnay contributes elegance, and Pinot Noir intensity and richness.

    This blend consists of predominantly unwooded Chardonnay, rounded off with Pinot Noir. Combined in perfect proportions, resulting in a white blend with an abundance of fruit on the nose and a slight creaminess on the palate.


     

    Haute Cabriere
    Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2017
    From £9.99

    A bottle of Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2017

    John Platter - 4 stars

    This enticing blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir shows elegant fruit and acidity, creating the perfect balance. You will find an abundance of zesty fruit - most notably white peach, pineapple, lime, followed by subtle red berry fruit - with a delectable full mouthfeel.

    Click here to order your bottles today!


     

    "This latest 2017 vintage has achieved one of its highest ratings in recent years and is a favourite at Hard to Find Wines HQ!

    An iconic wine from the Franschhoek valley, this unique blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir was pioneered by the estate in the early 90's. This vintage shows an incredible freshness yet maintains its signature balance of white stone fruit, peaches and lychee ending on a beautiful berry finish.

    A most versatile wine which can be enjoyed as much on its own as with food pairings."

    - Mark Davies, Hard to Find Wines


     

    Recommended pairings

    Seafood and chicken dishes as well as Mediterranean flavours.

    Click here to order your bottles today!

    Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2017 with food

  • Food and Wine Pairing: Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2017

    A big favourite at Hard to Find Wines HQ is Haute Cabrière’s Chardonnay Pinot Noir. Whilst it’s a perfect wine to drink on its own, Chardonnay Pinot Noir works very well with seafood.

    Here is the perfect complimentary recipe created by Haute Cabrière’s chefs Nic van Wyk and Westley Muller.


     

    Grilled line fish with sauce vierge paired with Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Pinot Noir

     

    Ingredients
    Serves 4

    Fish

    4x200g fish fillets, we use hake most of the time or any Sassi green listed fish
    16 baby Nicola or red skin or fir potatoes (4 per person)
    *4 artichoke hearts cut in half

    Sauce Vierge

    1/2 cup olive oil
    1/2 cup canola oil
    80ml Raspberry vinegar
    Juice of one lemon
    1/2 red onion, chopped
    2 Tomatoes skinned and deseeded
    1 Tbs toasted crushed coriander seeds
    1 Tbs toasted crushed fennel seeds
    100g chopped parsley
    100g chopped basil
    100g spring onions
    Salt and pepper

    Method

    For the sauce

    Toast the spices and crush. Add the red onion and hot toasted spices to the vinegar and lemon juice. Bring to the boil, and infuse for 30 min. Strain the sauce and season with salt and pepper. Finely dice the skinned tomato and chop the herbs. Whisk all the oil and vinegar mixture together, add the fresh herbs and tomato and season.

    For the rest of the dish

    Cook the baby potatoes with the skin on, in salted water till soft, remove and drain, cut in rounds and dress with some sauce vierge set aside.

    Grill the artichoke hearts on a griddle pan until nice and charred on the edges, set aside. Both these items are served at room temperature.

    For the fish

    Grill the fish until nice and brown, about 2-3 minutes on each side and finish in a hot oven if need be for 3 minutes.  Spoon some of the sauce verge on a room temperature plate and place the potatoes in the middle, place the fish on top of the potatoes and finish with the grilled artichokes make sure you have enough sauce on the plate, each bite should be able to soak up a good amount of sauce.

    *Seasonal. You can use good quality bottled artichokes. The ones in oil are best. Asparagus also works well as pictured.

  • La Couronne: the Crown of Franschhoek Part 2

    In Part 1 of our La Couronne blog post last month, we explored the history behind La Couronne and looked at some of their award-winning wines. In this, Part 2, we learn more about their wine and winemaking.

    The Team behind the Wines

    La Couronne maintains a small, tight-knit team at the farm that are led by Owner, Francois Smith; Wine Maker, Henk Swart; and General Manager, Eldorette Carinus.

    All three and the other team members working with them are passionate about wine and the wine industry.

    La Couronne maintains high standards of sustainable and ethical winemaking practices. One example is one of their water-saving exercises (a very important detail in the currently drought-stricken Western Cape area of South Africa): any run-off created during the winemaking process is used to irrigate the vineyards.

    The Grapes behind the Wines

    Shiraz Grapes at La Couronne

    La Couronne has over 23 hectares of vines, made up of 9 grape varietals: Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz, Merlot, Malbec, Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. All grapes are hand-picked and La Couronne's cellar has the capacity to process 200 tons of harvested grapes.

    Most of La Couronne's barrels are French Oak, with a smaller number of Hungarian and American Oak barrels. Stainless steel tanks are also used in the fermentation process. La Couronne uses Speidal Egg tanks to ferment and age some of their red wines to ensure an excellent outcome.

    Award-winning Wines

    In Part 1, we let you know that La Couronne has been awarded a Gold Medal and the IWC Franschhoek Chardonnay Trophy at the International Wine Challenge 2018 for their Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2016. Their Limited Release Pinotage 2015 and Merlot Rose 2017 were both awarded a Bronze Medal, and their Malbec 2015 received a Commended at the IWC.

    A number of other awards received over the past year include:

    Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2014
    £14.99

    A bottle of La Couronne Chardonnay 2014

    Outstanding oak and fruit integration with a full rich creamy mouthfeel of almonds and vanilla. Light lingering aftertaste of peaches and hints of citrus. This is La Couronne's maiden vintage of this barrel fermented Chardonnay.

    • 2015 - Vitis Vinifera Award – Gold
    • 2015 - John Platter Award – 4 Stars

    Malbec 2014
    £14.99

    A bottle of La Couronne Malbec 2014

    Decadent aromas of dark cocoa and Eastern spices. The palate offers ripened plums and crushed berries finishing with lingering creamy oak.

    • 2014 – Gold Wine Award – Gold
    • 2015 – Veritas Award – Silver
    • 2015 – Vitis Vinifera Award – Gold
    • 2015 – Terrior Wine Award

    Merlot Rose 2017
    £8.99
    A bottle of La Couronne Merlot Rose

    100% Merlot goes into this quality rose. A deliciously delicate rose, with bright pink colouration and a subtle strawberry nose. The palate is surprisingly refreshing and dry, with soft berry flavours.

    • 2017 – The Global Rosé Masters 2018 – Silver
    • 2017 – Vitis Vinifera Award – Gold
    • 2017 – Michelangelo Award – Gold
    • 2017 – Rosé Rocks Award – Double Gold
    • 2017 – Gold Wine Award – Gold

    Upper Deck Red 2015
    £8.79

    A bottle of La Couronne Upper Deck Red

    A well rounded, medium bodied, easy drinking wine with spicy smoky aromas and soft tannins. it has an has an impressive smoothness and a long fruity finish.

    • 2015 – Gold Wine Award – Gold

    If you would like to broader sample of La Couronne's wines before deciding on your favourite, why not try our Taster Case?

    La Couronne Taster Case
    £54.99

    Taster case of La Couronne Wines

    Currently on offer at 12% off, this case contains a 6-bottle selection from the La Couronne range of wines. Included in this taster selection is their wonderful bordeaux-style blend, the Portside Red and one of only a handful of single varietal Malbecs being produced in SA at present. The mixed case includes a bottle each of:

    La Couronne Unwooded Chardonnay
    La Couronne Sauvignon Blanc
    La Couronne Merlot Rose
    La Couronne Portside Red
    La Couronne Pinotage
    La Couronne Malbec

  • La Couronne: the Crown of Franschhoek Part 1

    Nestled against the Klein Dassenberg Mountain in this beautiful corner of South Africa lies the peaceful gem of a wine farm, La Couronne Estate. This essential stop on any wine tour of the Franschhoek winelands boasts spectacular views of vineyard-covered slopes and towering peaks.

    History

    La Couronne means “The Crown” and pays homage to a warship built by the French Navy in 1636. The Crown transported 277 French Huguenots, escaping persecution for their faith in their homeland, to the Cape area of South Africa in 1685. The slopes of the current La Couronne farm site were settled over 300 years ago by the Huguenots who brought with them their iconic French winemaking knowledge.

    Activities

    A warm welcome by the La Couronne team, led by Eldorette Carinus and winemaker Henk Swart, awaits guests from wine connoisseurs to tourists and even to families with little ones. A variety of activities is catered for, including wedding functions, picnics, lunches, wine tastings and wine pairings.

    La Couronne's wine pairings include wine and chocolate, wine and pizza and a very South African wine and braai (BBQ) pairing.

    Award-winning Wines

    La Couronne has secured a number of awards for their wines, with the most recent medals and trophies being awarded at the International Wine Challenge 2018.

    La Couronne's Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2016 won a Gold Medal as well as the IWC Franschhoek Chardonnay Trophy. La Couronne's Limited Release Pinotage 2015 scooped a Bronze Medal, as did their Merlot Rose 2017 and their Malbec 2015 received a Commended.

    Gold Medal and Trophy winning Chardonnay 2016 is on its way to Hard To Find Wines. In the meantime, why not order these La Couronne wines while you wait.

    Chardonnay 2014
    £14.99

    A bottle of La Couronne Chardonnay 2014

    Outstanding oak and fruit integration with a full rich creamy mouthfeel of almonds and vanilla. Light lingering aftertaste of peaches and hints of citrus. This is La Couronne’s maiden vintage of this barrel fermented Chardonnay.

    Pinotage 2016
    £11.99

    A bottle of La Couronne Pinotage 2016

    A rich full bodied wine with an earthy aroma coupled with dark fruits. The palate is smooth and succulent, with touches of spice and brambles accompanying dark cherry and blackcurrant flavours.

    Merlot Rose 2017
    £8.99

    A bottle of La Couronne Merlot Rose

    100% Merlot goes in to this quality rose from Franschhoek. A deliciously delicate rose, with bright pink colouration and a subtle strawberry nose. The palate is surprisingly refreshing and dry, with soft berry flavours.

    Malbec 2014
    £14.99

    A bottle of La Couronne Malbec 2014

    Decadent aromas of dark cocoa and Eastern spices. The palate offers ripened plums and crushed berries finishing with lingering creamy oak. The La Couronne Malbec is one of only a handful of single varietal Malbec's currently to be produced in South Africa, making this a fairly unique wine. The quality of this wine shines through, with the Malbec taking on the South African terroir superbly in the shape of a depth of flavour that many Argentinian Malbec's lack.

    Do you want to learn a bit more about La Couronne's range of wines and the passions and purposes of their winemaking? Part 2 of this post will follow next month, so keep your eye on our Facebook page or the blog for that post!

  • IWC Winners for 2018!

    The International Wine Challenge is in its 34th year. The IWC is a meticulously judged wine competition where each wine is judged blind for faithfulness to style, region and vintage. During the judging process, each medal-winning wine is tasted on three occasions by at least 10 different judges. Awards include medals (Trophy, Gold, Silver, Bronze) as well as Commended and Great Value awards.

    Our South African wines put on quite a show this year. Below are the winners of Trophy, Gold and Silver awards.

    LA COURONNE

    Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2016
    IWC Franschhoek Chardonnay Trophy and Gold Medal

    A bottle of La Couronne Chardonnay 2016

    Congratulations to Eldorette, Henk and the team at La Couronne in Franschhoek on winning the IWC Franschhoek Chardonnay Trophy and Gold Medal for their Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2016. This is a lovely, complex, medium weight chardonnay with scented vanilla spice, some honey and pear. A tangy, saline acidity and a long, refreshing finish.

    In addition to this Gold Medal and Trophy, La Couronne also won Bronze Medals for their Limited Release Pinotage 2015 and their Merlot Rose 2017 and a Commended for their Malbec 2015.

    ASARA

    The Bell Tower 2013
    IWC Silver Medal

    A bottle of Asara Bell Tower 2013

    Sleek, intense and packed with sweet black plum and bitter chocolate, with an edge of balsamic. A sweet intensity and structure.

    Vineyard Collection Chenin Blanc 2016
    IWC Silver Medal

    A bottle of Asara Vineyard Collection Chenin Blanc 2016

    Fresh tight lean style with vanilla oak characteristics on the finish. Warm, Waxy, ripe style, juicy melon and ripe apple fruit and some lingering honeysuckle.

    GLENWOOD VINEYARDS

    Vigneron's Selection Chardonnay 2016
    IWC Silver Medal

    A bottle of GlenWood Vigneron's Selection Chardonnay 2016

    Bold and powerful citrus burst, mouth-fillingly rich and creamy vanilla with beautifully integrated oak. Butterscotch and glycerine, creamy balance with great length and lift.

    Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc Grand Duc 2016
    IWC Silver Medal

    GW Sem Saus Grand Duc 2016

    Baked apple and cinnamon, buttered popcorn with savoury notes. Long and complex.

    GROOT CONSTANTIA

    Shiraz 2015
    IWC Silver Medal

    A bottle of GC Shiraz 2015

    The 2015 Shiraz shows textbook black pepper spice and violets on the nose with hints of Cape fynbos and black currant.  The intense fruit flavours follow on the palate with firm tannin and a fresh acidity that promises great ageing potential.

    Pinotage 2016
    IWC Silver Medal

    A bottle of Groot Constantia Pinotage 2016

    A bold, generous, rich, plummy fruit with notes of dark chocolate and mocha. A traditional style of Pinotage, of earthy farmyard qualities interlaced with full dark fruits.

    While we do have the Groot Constantia wines in stock, you will need to wait a bit longer for some of these other award winners. We expect the arrival of the Glenwood Vigneron’s Selection Chardonnay 2016 over the course of the next month. The Asara wines and the La Couronne Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2016 will be arriving at Hard To Find Wines over the next few months.

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