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Top 10 new products: December 2016

Víña Pomal Gran Reserva 2010

Bodegas Bilbainas has revived the original label of its Viña Pomal Gran Reserva for the release of the 2010 vintage. Rated ‘excellent’ by the Rioja Control Board, the Viña Pomal Gran Reserva 2010, the flagship wine of Bodegas Bilbainas, features the classic gold Viña Pomal label first used by the brand in 1904.

A classic Rioja blend of 90% Tempranillo and 10% Graciano, the gran reserva is aged for 24 months in American oak barrels, 12 months in oak vats and 36 months in bottle. The wine is described by winemaker Alejandro López as possessing “a complex, elegant nose with notes of liquorice and red fruit, typical of Tempranillo, along with hints of spice added by the Graciano”.
López said the 2010 harvest in Rioja was “one of the best vintages for almost 20 years”.

“Low temperatures and rains during flowering had a positive affect on ripening,” he said. “This, coupled with a hot, dry summer and rain in September, provided optimum ripening conditions and allowed us to start picking early. It was an extraordinary year resulting in balanced, very aromatic, well-structured wines.”

RRP: £20


Dom Pérignon P2 1996 Rosé

Dom Pérignon has launched its new P2 1996 Rosé from a vintage described by chef de cave Richard Geoffroy as “puzzling” and “full of contrasts”. Dom Pérignon is one of the few Champagne houses to release a rosé from this vintage, which Geoffroy admits was unlike any other he had experienced previously. Early dehydration in the grapes was followed by wetter periods that never quite made up for the initial moisture deficit.

Harvest began on 16 September, with spells of hot weather and north-easterly winds in the preceding month giving the vintage an “unusual maturity”. This gave rise to a wine that Geoffroy describes as having a “daring, intense nose with surprising Mediterranean influences”, and a palate that expresses “darker, silvery notes that are briny and peppery”.

A blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, with the addition of a significant 20% of red wine, Dom Pérignon’s P2 Rosé has a dosage of just 6g/l, one of the lowest in Champagne. It spent around 16 years on the lees before undergoing an additional four years’ ageing in bottle post disgorgement.

RRP: £820

CONTACT Moët & Chandon, +44 (0)207 808 4400

Black Bowmore 50-Year-Old

Bowmore has unveiled a limited-edition £16,000 bottle of 50-year-old single malt – the fifth and final release from its Black Bowmore series. Black Bowmore was first distilled on 5 November 1964 at the Bowmore distillery on Islay. After four releases – the first in 1993 and the fourth in 2007 – one final cask was discovered in the corner of Bowmore’s No.1 Vaults, which was used to create this 50-year-old expression.

Launched on 1 November, just 159 bottles of Black Bowmore 50-Year-Old have been produced. Having spent 50 years maturing in cask, it is the most aged expression of the Black Bowmore series. The Islay single malt has been matured in first-fill oloroso Sherry casks, which have imparted a “deep, black pearl darkness to the colour of the whisky”, with notes of tropical fruit and honeyed black truffle, along with the signature peat smokiness of Bowmore.

RRP: £16,000.


Ars Collecta

A new premium collection of Cava has been launched by Codorníu Raventos, which it has billed as its masterwork. The collection is made up of five Cavas produced from grapes grown at three vineyards; Fedeuera, El Tros Nou and La Pleta, growing Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Xarel.lo respectively. Produced to commemorate Codorníu’s 456 harvests, from 1551 to 2007, its latin name was chosen as a nod to both the “art of harvesting” and “art collecting”.

The pinnacle of the collection is 456 – a 2007-vintage Cava blended from grapes grown in all three vineyards – which at €175 a bottle is “probably the most expensive Cava ever”. Javier Pagés, chief executive of Codorníu Raventós group, hopes that 456 will help “do away with the false myth that only small wineries can craft artisan and quality offerings”.

RRP: €80 to €175.

CONTACT Codorníu Raventos,

Campari Negroni

Campari has released a ready-made Negroni, an iconic cocktail synonymous with the Italian apéritivo. The classic mix of Campari, London dry gin and vermouth rosso was created by chance in Florence around 1919 by Count Camillo Negroni and since then has helped to lead a resurgence in the popularity of classic cocktails.

The new Campari Negroni 70cl bottle will follow the same design as the original Campari bottle, but will bear the image of the Count on its label. It will be available exclusively at Waitrose stores.

RRP: £19.

CONTACT Campari UK, +44 (0)20 3100 9600

Hawkshead Brewery canned IPA and NZPA

Tapping into demand for canned craft brews, New Zealand’s Hawkshead Brewery has launched its first two such beers – a 7% American-style IPA and a 3.5% New Zealand pale ale. The higher-strength IPA is brewed with a blend of American and New Zealand hops.

The second beer, named Iti, is described as a 3.5% session version of the brewery’s premium-strength New Zealand Pale Ale (NZPA.), with ‘Iti; being the Maori word for ‘little’. Brewed by Matt Clarke, Hawkshead’s head brewer, both beers have been chill-conditioned and canned unfiltered and unpasteurised.

RRPs: ITI £2.10/IPA £2.70


Patrón Silver Tequila one-litre

Ahead of the festive season, Patrón Tequila has released a limited-edition one-litre bottle of its Silver Tequila. It is the second time the distiller has released a large-format holiday bottle, which this year carries an Art Deco-inspired black and silver pewter label, geometric print and trademark Patrón bee, inspired by the spirit’s Mexican heritage.

The bottle is topped with a back and silver cork closure that reflects the Art Deco aesthetic of the label. It comes packaged in a gift bag. Patrón Silver Tequila is handcrafted in small batches from 100% Weber Blue Agave, and distilled and bottled at the Hacienda Patrón distillery in the Highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. Patrón Silver’s taste is described as sweet, with fresh agave and citrus, and a light pepper finish.

RRP: US$59.99.

CONTACT Patrón Spirits,

Freya Birch Sap Spirit

The ‘world’s first’ spirit distilled from birch sap has been launched as part of a new line of sustainable, natural alcoholic beverages. Conceived by UK-based Pure Wild Spirits, Freya is made using birch sap foraged from northern European forests. Harvesters have just three weeks in early spring to tap the trees for sap, which is then frozen to retain its freshness. After being transported to the UK, the sap is fermented and distilled in handmade copper pot stills, producing a “delicious, clean alternative spirit” to vodka, gin and other white spirits.

The 40% ABV spirit is said to have a lightly fruity aroma “akin to fresh peaches”, with hints of “natural green flavours reminiscent of a premium Tequila” on the palate, finishing with notes of wood, vanilla and rye. It is intended to be served over ice or in cocktails.

RRP £34

CONTACT Pure Wild Spirits, +44 (0)207 717 5560

Dig This! organic wines

UK wine importer and distributor Ehrmanns has partnered with South African winery Stellar and South African NGO Greenpop to launch a range of organic wines. Called Dig This! the range is comprised of two wines; a “fruit-forward” Chenin–Sauvignon Blanc and an “easy-drinking” Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon. For every bottle sold, 6% of its retail value will go back toward to Greenpop and The Stellar Foundation. “Organic wines have always been a key part of Ehrmanns’ portfolio and they are now more important than ever before,” said Richard Dennis, Ehrmanns’ senior commercial manager.

“Organic wine is one of the few categories in BWS currently in growth (Nielsen reported a 5.3% growth between 2014-2015) so we are well placed to meet increased demand for environmentally responsible brands.” Ehrmanns has also launched a No Sulphur Added Shiraz as part of Stellar’s Running Duck range, joining its Pinotage, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.

RRP: £7.99

CONTACT Ehrmanns, +44 (0)20 3227 0700

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