We’ve teamed up with the wonderful people of Wines from Rioja to participate in their Shop Rioja campaign.

Fellow Wine Lovers,

This week we’ve had raids at Volkswagen, suspensions at Fifa and tax fraud charges for Mr Messi. We’ve got Klopp in at Liverpool, though probably Sunderland need him more, and Dinamo Zagreb face no sanctions despite one of their players failing a drug test after the game with Arsenal.

We’re not going to mention the rug…oops nearly slipped up.

We had a brief chat with our chum Ulrich this week; he’s the talented chap that makes the Hoffman and Rathbone English sparklers. He was pretty excited and busy sharpening his secateurs as he expects to start harvesting today.

Elsewhere across Europe, we’ve had earlier harvest than usual due to heatwaves across parts of France and Spain this summer, but Bordeaux, Rhone Valley, Tuscany and Rioja all seem pretty excited about the grapes they’re squashing. Rioja particularly seems to think it is similar to 2005, one of the great vintages in recent times.  The Port producers also seem pretty happy which means we can all look forward to some great drinking in the years to come!

Shop Rioja

Talking of Rioja, the sharp eyed amongst you may have noticed a number of fine bottles and maps appearing in our window display. For way of a change, we are going to feature the wonderful wines from this beautiful part of Spain. We’ve teamed up with the wonderful people of Wines from Rioja to participate in their Shop Rioja campaign.

Located in the north of Spain, Rioja is the country’s best known region. Protected by mountains from both scorching continental heat and heavy Atlantic rains, it has an ideal climate for the production of whites and roses, as well as the better known reds.

Not any wine can be called Rioja- wines have to pass several tests before they are classified.

The reds are from predominantly Tempranillo, but the blend can also contain Garnacha, Mazuelo (known elsewhere as Carignan), and Graciano – a grape Alex is particularly fond of if you’re looking for gift inspiration!

The whites are predominantly Viura, but also can contain Garnacha Blanca and Malvasia in the blend.

This week on the red front we’ll look at a Crianza. Identified by the regulator with a cherry red logo on the back label the wines must be aged for a minimum of two years at the winery before release, one year of which must be in oak casks.

Ramon Bilbao Edición Limitada 2011 – £14.99 – These guys were named “Best Spanish Producer” at the International Wine and Spirits Competition 2014. Based in Haro in Rioja Alta, one taste of this and you’ll see what the fuss is about.

On the white front we’re getting all cosy with Bodegas Ontañon’s Vetiver Rioja Blanco – £10.79. This hails from Rioja Baja and is 100% Viura aged for 4 months in a barrel and 6 months in the bottle. Perfect with some fish pie!

All that remains for me to say is all Rioja wines are on a special offer this month. We’re offering 10% off of 6 bottles and that’s mixable. Given the great value these wines offer already, you should be “having it large!”


Wayne & Alex

Comments are closed.