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Louis Roederer Brut Nature 2006

Champagne house Louis Roederer has branched out into the Brut Nature category with a vintage expression. Made in collaboration with famous French designer Philippe Starck, the vintage zero-dosage fizz is a first for the house and for the Champagne industry.

Starck has been involved with every stage of the wine’s progress from grape to bottle, rather than simply its design. The idea was to create a “pure wine with nothing to hide”, with its nakedness helping to best express the honesty of the terroir from which it came.

The approach mirrors Starck’s own ethos, as he’s known for his clean lines and elegant aesthetic. The designer worked closely with Louis Roederer’s managing director, Frédéric Rouzaud, on the project. After numerous tastings, the pair settled on wine from Cumières from the 2006 vintage.

The grapes from this site in this vintage were ripe enough to ensure that the zerodosage Champagne is balanced.

RRP: £65.

CONTACT: Maisons Marques et Domaines +44 (0)20 8812 3380

Klein Constantia Vin de Constance 2009

Written about by Jane Austen and Charles Dickens and devoured by Napoleon, the 2009 vintage of South African amber nectar Vin de Constance has just been released. Made with 100% Muscat de Frontignan grapes grown on the foothills of the Constantia Valley, grapes that made the cut for the 14% abv sweet wine were left to dry on the vine with only the best bunches selected.

“At the end of the growing season, the individual berries are hand-picked to make the essencia, the very heart of the Vin de Constance,” says sparky young winemaker Matthew Day, one of db’s 30 winemakers under 40 to watch. After fermentation, the batches were aged on the lees in a combination new French and Hungarian oak for four years prior to blending, bottling and labelling by hand. In order to maintain its quality, the wine is only made in exceptional years.

RRP: £50.
CONTACT:Mentzendorff: +44 (0)20 7840 3600

Buffalo Trace Antique Collection

Bourbon brand Buffalo Trace has launched its Antique Collection in the UK. Produced annually by the Kentucky distillery, the quintet went on sale through Hi-Spirits this month. Among the sips in the collection are George T. Stagg, an uncut and unfiltered Bourbon; Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye, named the World’s Best Rye Whiskey at the 2014 World Whiskies Awards; and William Larue Weller, an uncut, unfiltered, wheated recipe Bourbon coming in at 70.1% proof.

“There is always high demand for our limited UK allocation of the Antique Collection, and we expect that to be higher than ever for the 2014 release after another year of category growth for the American whiskey,” says Hi-Spirits’ managing director Dan Bolton. The Bourbon category continues to boom in the UK, with year on year offtrade sales up 15% according to Nielsen.

RRP: £120-£140.

CONTACT: Hi-Spirits +44 (0)1932 252 100

Dom Pérignon 2004 Metamorphosis

Dom Pérignonhas collaborated with Dutch fashion designer Iris van Herpen on a bespoke label for the 2004 vintage. Entitled: Dom Pérignon Metamorphosis by Iris van Herpen, the striking design was launched in New York to coincide with New York Fashion Week.

Playing on the idea of rebirth, the “Metamorphosis” label links back to DP’s cellar master, Richard Geoffroy’s belief that his Champagnes have different life stages, or “plenitudes” as he calls them.

The green used on both the label and the gift box is supposed to represent the “organic power” within the wine as it evolves into its second plenitude. In addition to the label design, van Herpen has created a made-to-order work of art as part of the collaboration, called “Cocoonase”.

RRP: £135.

CONTACT: Moët Hennessy UK +44 (0)20 7808 4400

Zonin Prestige 1821

A new sparkler from Italian powerhouse Zonin, Prestige 1821 was created in response to increasing demand for a Zonin-branded Docg Prosecco. Named in honour of the year Casa Vinicola Zonin was founded, the Glera grapes that go into the wine are grown in Valdobbiadene.

Boasting a contemporary geometric label that tips its hat to the fashion world created by Italian packaging design agency SGA, according to its makers, the 11.5% abv sparkler offers notes of “green apple, lemon, grapefruit, wisteria, acacia and elderflower.”


CONTACT: Zonin UK +44 20 8940 4943

Domaine Bousquet Gaia 2013

Named after the Greek goddess of the earth, not to be confused with the Italian wine producer of the same name, Gaia is the creation of Argentine winery Domaine Bousquet, which itself has French roots.

The name of the wine was chosen by Anne Bousquet, a fifth generation family member and co-owner of the estate, due to Gaia’s encapsulation of female power.

The wine is an organic red blend dominated by Malbec grown 1,200 metres above sea level in Tupungato, considered by some to be the “grand cru” of the Mendoza region. Making up the remainder of the blend is Syrah and a dash of Cabernet Sauvignon.”

RRP: . £16.99.

CONTACT: Vintage Roots +44 (0)1189 326 566

Jacquart Brut Mosaïc Rosé NV

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Champagne Jacquart has launched a limited edition magnum of its Brut Mosaïc Rosé. Each of the magnums comes in a gift box that echoes the bottle’s bespoke label design – a geometric work featuring pink, white and yellow squares with a glossy finish.

A blend of 40% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Meunier and 30% Pinot Noir, according to its makers, the fizz offers finesse, structure and balance. “Our 50th anniversary marks the celebration of a group of men and women who came together to create an audacious Champagne house.

Combining traditional knowledge of the terroirs with modern winemaking techniques, the vision of Champagne Jacquart is demonstrated through our elegant and unique house style,” Laurent Reinteau, director of Champagne Jacquart said.

RRP: £84.70

CONTACT Zonin UK +44 20 8940 4943

Grey Goose VX

French vodka Grey Goose has launched an “ultra-premium” expression in the form of VX. Standing for “Vodka Exceptionelle”, the spirit combines vodka with drops of cognac from the Grande Champagne cru.

Launched in travel retail, brand owner Bacardi believes VX marks a “significant step change for the white spirits category.” Creator François Thibault says: “In making VX, I wanted to capture the aromatic notes of a precious Cognac, bringing its delicate essence of orchard fruits, violet, plum, apricot and the mild flavours of wild honey to the remarkable character of Grey Goose vodka.”

The liquid is housed in a decanter made from “extra flint” glass inspired by the shape of French decanters of yore.

RRP: £89.

CONTACT: Bacardi UK +44 (0)196 2762 100

KWV The Mentors Verdelho 2013

A new addition to KWV’s now 15-strong Mentors range, the launch coincides with a packaging refresh for the brand. Made from 100% Verdelho grown on organic alluvial soils in the Western Cape, the wine is barrel fermented with indigenous yeasts and given extended lees contact for 100 days in order to enhance the texture and improve the mouthfeel.

Aged in barrel for six months before bottling, according to its makers it boasts aromas of “peach and apricot with flinty, floral and nutty nuances.” On the palate, expect “zesty notes, almonds and dried fruit”. “We’ve focused on vineyards that produce outstanding quality and reflect regionality. The resulting wines show greater fruit purity, better structure, elegance and finesse,” says Johann Fourie, chief winemaker at KWV.

RRP: £16.99.

CONTACT: KWV +27 21 807 3250

Chocolate Drop

For all those who adore chocolate, Chocolate Drop is a somewhat imaginative blend of red British wine with dark chocolate flavours – a rather unique, affordable indulgence released by Broadland Wineries.

Aromas of dark chocolate and black cherry with notes of mocha and vanilla, the wine is richly sweet, with a chocolate character which is matched by black fruit flavours in an effort to find freshness and balance.

RRP: £6

CONTACT: Sainsburys,

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