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Louis Roederer Brut Nature 2009

Louis Roederer has released its 2009 Brut Nature in collaboration with designer Philippe Starck. A zero-dosage limited edition, this is the second vintage of the cuvée, with the first released following the 2006 vintage. At that time, it was the first new product to be released by the house in 40 years. The fizz is made from a blend of Pinot Noir, Meunier and Chardonnay picked from 10 hectares of vines in the village of Cumieres in the Marne Valley.

“The second opus of our Brut Nature is the perfect representation of a modern, ripe and ready-to-drink Champagne with a fresh, pure, almost abstract style and remarkable precision,” said Frédéric Rouzaud, CEO and the seventh generation of the Roederer family to lead the company. Starck’s involvement goes beyond the wine’s striking packaging, with the designer consulted at each stage of the production process. The Champagne will be released in the UK at select retailers and on-trade venues.

RRP: £80

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

Coravin Harrods Model Two

Coravin has announced the launch of the exclusive Harrods Model Two in the store’s iconic shade of green. The new product includes the same new features as the Model Two, which launched in February, and boasts a streamlined design and an updated needle that pours 20% faster than the original Model 8. Coravin’s wine system allows users to pour wine without removing the cork, using groundbreaking technology to keep the cork in place, while the accompanying gas capsule inserts inert argon gas into the bottle.

The pressure of the argon pushes the wine through the needle, simultaneously preventing any oxygen from entering the bottle. Launched in 2013, it is increasingly seen as being responsible for the growth of by-the-glass offerings in restaurants. With Harrods having been a dedicated stockist of Coravin since its UK launch in 2013, the company said it was “very fitting” for the retailer to be releasing an exclusive model in its signature colour. The Coravin Model Two Elite – the more consumer-focused model – will still be available at £249, and the recently launched Model One, aimed at the millennial market, at £199.

RRP: £199

CONTACT Coravin,

Jura ‘One for the Road’ single malt whisky

A limited edition expression of Jura single malt whisky has been released to mark the retirement of its distillery manager Willie Cochrane. Named ‘One For The Road’, the 22-year-old single malt, finshed in Pinot Noir casks, is a tribute to Cochrane’s 39 year career with Jura, with just 5,000 bottles set to be released. Cochrane arrived in Jura in 1977 with the intention of staying for a year, but ended up staying there for the next four decades after he was offered a job in the distillery. “One of the perks of my job is meeting people who have travelled to the island from far and wide to share their appreciation for whisky with me and the team at the distillery,” said Cochrane. “Now that I have the opportunity, I can think of no better way to repay the favour than releasing one final expression – one for the road – to share with them.” Graham Logan, a former Jura stillman who has worked with Cochrane for the past two decades, will take up the position of distillery manager.


RRP: £120

Root:1 Sauvignon Blanc, Viña Ventisquero

Chilean wine producer Viña Ventisquero is launching its Root:1 Sauvignon Blanc into the UK market. The Chilean Sauvignon Blanc comes from the Casablanca Valley, 25km from the Pacific Coast, from grapes grown on ungrafted root systems that come from original European rootstocks unaffected by Phylloxera in the 19th century.

According to the producer, the use of ungrafted rootstocks planted in 1998 gives the wine greater fruit purity. First released in 2013, the wine has enjoyed strong sales at Morrisons according to Viña Ventisquero’s key account director Americo Hernandez. UK sales have increased from 2,000 9L cases to 10,000 cases, with Hernandez eyeing a good opportunity for the Sauvignon in the UK.

CONTACT: Walker & Wodehouse, +44 (0)20 7449 1665

RRP: £8

Fever Tree Madagascan Cola

Tapping into a growing trend for high-end mixers, Fever Tree has unveiled a new Madacascan cola designed to be mixed with dark spirits. Available in 200ml glass bottles, the all-natural cola is made from ingredients including Nigerian kola nut, Indonesian cassia, Mexican lime and Madagascan vanilla.

“Unlike other colas on the market that are designed as soft drinks and can easily overpower spirits, the rich blend of citrus and spice found in our Madagascan Cola will enhance the flavour notes of the finest rums, Bourbons and whiskies,” said Fever Tree co-founder and CEO Tim Warrillow. Fever Tree will be working with the on-trade to craft bespoke winter cocktail menus featuring the cola to help drive sales of premium dark spirits. Established in 2005, Fever Tree now sells a range of premium mixers to 58 overseas markets.

CONTACT: Fever Tree, +44 (0)20 7349 4922

RRP £12-14 (ex VAT) per case of 24

Nipozzano Vecchie Viti 2013

The Frescobaldi family has launched two new wines, both of which will be on show at the The TFWA show in Cannes in October.

“The show provides a great opportunity to touch base with our business partners and to feel the “mood” of the industry. The Frescobaldi Group will exhibit in the Beach Village 2, at Beach 04 & 09. The stand will be under the banner ISWA, the alliance among family owned fine wine producers, and the seven partners will present a representative selection of their most significant wines.”

Among its new releases is its Nipozzano Vecchie Viti 2013, Chianti Rufina Riserva DOCG from the historic estate of Castello Nipozzano. This is the third vintage of this Riserva, made from a vineyard more than 40 years old.

The producer’s Alie Rose’ 2015 hails from the newest Frescobaldi estate, in the Maremma region, and is described as a “charming rose made with Shiraz softly pressed, complemented by a small percentage of Vermentino”.

The latter won a Gold Medal at the recent Drinks Business Global Rose’ Masters tasting.

Graham’s 20cl 10, 20 and 30 Year Old Tawny Ports

Graham’s has released a range of 10, 20 and 30 Year Old Ports in 20cl bottles to broaden its appeal and attract younger consumers. According to the producer, premium Tawny is currently the fastest-growing category of Port, accounting for over half (53%) of all premium Port sales by value, and has proven particularly popular with younger consumers.

Bottles of Graham’s aged Tawnies are now available in 20cl, 75cl and 450cl clear-glass bottles. The new miniature range will be available from retailers, including Harvey Nichols, Harrods and Vintage Wine & Port.

CONTACT Fells, +44 (0)1442 870 900

RRP: from £7.49

Ardbeg Twenty One

Ardbeg has released a limited edition 21-year-old single malt produced at a time when when the distillery had almost fallen into disrepair. Ardbeg Twenty One began life in the mid 1990s when production at the distillery had dwindled to almost nothing. A small group, including Mickey Heads (now distillery manager), set aside a small number of casks, unsure of Ardbeg’s future.

Today, Ardbeg’s longterm success is secure thanks to the 120,000-strong Ardbeg Committee, with members in over 130 countries, formed to prevent the distillery from ever closing. “I selected the casks for this sumptuous, golden whisky as they combine the distinctive peppery smokiness of Ardbeg with soothing, buttery qualities,” said Dr Bill Lumsden, director of distilling and whisky creation at Ardbeg. The 46% abv, non chill-filtered bottling will be released exclusively to members of the Ardbeg Committee, in recognition of their role in safeguarding the distillery’s future.

RRP: £310.

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

Foxhole London Dry Gin

Bolney Wine Estate has launched a business making gin from the by-products of its English wine production. The gin is being made by new company Foxhole Spirits, which launched in February and although based at Bolney, is owned and run as a separate entity. Foxhole Spirits is headed up by Plumpton College graduate James Oag-Cooper and has Bolney’s MD and head winemaker Sam Linter as one of its directors. In a typical harvest around 30-40% of the grape material is not used. It is this waste that the company wants to use to make the gin, distilling the second pressing of the grapes – the taille – that normally gets thrown away.

“The fact that there was this waste has been one of the things that has really bothered me,” Linter told db. “We had a lightbulb moment because gin was becoming so popular and we were interested to see if the wine character would give something different to the gin.” The recipe was developed over 18 months to avoid being too brandy-like in character, with the grape spirit giving a “velvety and creamy texture” and floral characteristics of violets and white blossom. The first batch will see just 960 numbered bottles released.

CONTACT Foxhole Spirits,

RRP: £45

Prelude Vineyards Chardonnay 2013, Leeuwin Estate

Australia’s Leeuwin Estates has released its 2013 Prelude Chardonnay, made from grapes grown within nine blocks in the Witchcliffe sub-region of Margaret River. The Chardonnay grapes were picked at night and cool-crushed with some skin contact before being fermented and matured in French oak barriques (medium toast, 40% new and 60% one year old), with regular lees stirring for ten months, before being blended. Malolactic fermentation was avoided.

The winter prior to the 2013 harvest at Leeuwin Estate was characterised by southwesterly fronts sweeping showery rain into Margaret River from the Indian Ocean. Bud burst for the Chardonnay vines began in late August. In early spring showery days were followed by long fine breaks, providing good conditions for vine growth. “Summer was warmer than average, and the first week of January saw the start of veraison for the Chardonnay grapes”, said David Winstanley, Leeuwin’s viticulturist. “We picked our Chardonnay grapes from mid-February – 2013 was an excellent vintage for Chardonnay at Leeuwin Estate.”

CONTACT Domaine Direct,

RRP: £26-£29

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