Circle of Life 2012, Stellenbosch, South Africa
May’s steal of the month is no other than the hands-down favourite from our Waterkloof wine tasting last Summer, Circle of Life 2012.
Not surprisingly, this fine white blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay and a little Semillon receives rave reviews, it is both contemporary and sophisticated. Layers of citrus, tropical fruit and light creamy vanilla seamlessly interweave with a precise mineral wrapper and lasting finish. The long, natural yeast fermentation, lees ageing, careful oak influence and blending have created an interesting, balanced and down-right delicious wine!
A sheer delight of a white and un-mistakeably a reflection of the variety and character of Waterkloof’s viticulture and viniculture where biodynamics, respect for nature, traditional winemaking and minimal intervention is key.
At the special price of £13.05 a bottle this month and just £11.60 to our wine club members, it’s a wine not to be missed, a bottle for cracking open when enjoying a seared tuna steak or a tasty spring chicken roast.
The first rule of Flight Club is…do not talk about Flight Club.
The second rule of Flight Club is…DO NOT…TALK…ABOUT…FLIGHT CLUB.
Irresistible film reference though it is, I’d probably rather that you did tell people about Flight Club otherwise it might turn out to be a less than successful event. So what is Flight Club? I’m glad you asked…
I’ve been toying with the idea for a while now. A series of informal tasting events where we combine a little bit education with a healthy dollop of fun. You get to taste some lovely stuff in an ever so slightly structured way so that, if you wish to, you can learn a little bit more about wine. But we’ll keep things light so that if all you want to do is try some different bits and bobs, you won’t feel like you’ve been dropped into night school. The plan is to produce some little crib cards for each event, with just enough information to cover the basics, so that as Flight Club progresses you can build a pocket sized library of wine facts.
The idea needs a little more development but we’ve decided to jump in and give it a go.
We’ll be kicking off Flight Club with a journey into the world of sherry. A seemingly unlikely place to start I know, but we ran a similar event shortly after we took over BinTwo (over 2 years ago now!) and it went down a storm! If your experience of sherry is your Gran digging out a dusty bottle of Harvey’s Bristol Cream at Christmas then you’ve been short-changed! Sherry is one of the world’s hidden treasures – you owe it to yourself to sample a wider range (and if you haven’t had Pedro Ximinez poured over ice-cream then, frankly, you haven’t lived.
Our lovely sherry supplier will be on hand to guide us through a tasting of Manzanilla, Fino, Olorosso, Amontillado and Pedro Ximenez. It simply wouldn’t be civilised to have a sherry tasting without food to nibble on, so we’ll be handing around tasters of Manchego cheese and cured meats from Deli Farm Charcuterie (our regular coppa ham plus a few other interesting bits and bobs), bread, oil and sweet balsamic reduction plus some obligatory olives and smoked almonds to transport your mind to the balmy climes of Jerez! There’s a rumour that we may even do that Pedro Ximinez over ice cream thing…
All this and you’ll go away having learned what flor is…if you want to.
The event will start at 7pm on Thursday 23rd June and costs just £15 per head. email firstname.lastname@example.org to book
Spy Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2015, Marlborough, New Zealand. 2 bottles £12.50
An old favourite for BinTwo customers in the classic Marlborough style – dry gooseberry, intense passionfruit and a refreshing citrus punch. Whilst predominantly fruit-driven, several months of lees ageing has imparted richness and complexity. This state of the art winery is situated in the Waihopai Valley, home to fine cool climate vineyards and a satellite listening station!
Price with wine club discount: £11.25
Tabali Reserva Especial Chardonnay 2014, Limari Valley, Chile. 2 bottles £11.50
Bright, vibrant and expressive! A full-bodied, fresh Burgundy-esque Chardonnay at half the price.
A reflection of its origin or ‘terroir’, ripeness and elegance thanks to coastal breezes and morning fog moderating the Limari Valley heat and minerality from soils unique to Tabali (high limestone concentration, gravel, salts). Add 10 months in French oak to the mix and the result is a stunning value Chardonnay which will go down a treat with fresh seafood!
Price with wine club discount: £10.35
Torre de Menagem 2014, Vinho Verde, Portugal. 2 Bottles £10
A white to crack open as an aperitif whatever the weather! I particularly love this Vinho Verde for its zest, minerality and lively light spritz. Torre de Menagem blends the local varieties of Alvarinho and Trajadura, the familiar citrus and apple vinho verde characters are backed up with a fuller ripe peachiness and floral notes, a nice example of probably the most popular of Portuguese dry whites.
Price with wine club discount: £9
Palacios Remondo La Vendimia 2014, Rioja, Spain. 2 bottles £12.50
Starring as this month’s ‘Wines We Love’ and on our Summer terrace menu by the glass, it’s high time this exuberant Rioja featured in our club case. La Vendimia ‘The Harvest’ is a juicy and judiciously oaked blend of Tempranillo and Grenache made by renowned Spanish winemaker Alvaro Palacios, Decanter Man of the Year 2015. An appealing medium-bodied wine with soft red fruits, gentle sweet spice and rounded palate. Perfect with a tasty charcuterie platter or a BBQ, you could even chill it a little if you fancy.
Price with wine club discount: £11.25
L’Hospitalet Merlot 2014, Languedoc-Roussillon, France. 2 bottles £10.50
A wonderfully smooth and quaffable 100% Merlot from Southern France. Ripe red currants rub shoulders with warming spice and sweet vanilla. A little oak maturation adds structure to this plump fruity red and contributes to the long, satisfying finish. A great accompaniment to a flavoursome roast.
Price with wine club discount: £9.45
False Bay Wild Yeast Rosé 2014, Western Cape, South Africa. 2 bottles £7.50
A beautiful soft salmon pink rosé blending Rhône varietals Cinsault and Mourvèdre. Fruit-forward yet dry and ever-so delicately spiced. The cool growing season for this vintage worked favourably for False Bay winemakers achieving desired aromatics and sugar levels. In the winery, spontaneous fermentation using the ‘wild’ naturally occurring yeast and then time on the lees has developed a soft, balanced pink which you can enjoy on its own and nicely chilled. Summer is on its way, honest!
Price with wine club discount: £6.75
Total cost of wines: £130
Bin Delivered price: £110 (£120 delivered nationally)
It’s that time of year where we celebrate everything that’s great about English wine. And we certainly have plenty to celebrate hailing, as we do, from the heart of one of the best wine-making regions in the country (well it’s the best really but I’m making an uncharacteristic attempt to be diplomatic).
Long-term followers of BinTwo will already know that we’ve always championed our local English winemakers; our year-round terrace menu currently features wines by the glass from all three of our local vineyards. In fact four of the eleven wines we offer by the glass are made within a stones throw of Padstow.
Nonetheless we still like to make an effort for English Wine Week and so we’ll opening a few extra local wines for you to try: The much-loved, multi award-winning Camel Valley Pinot Noir Brut Rosé (Pink Fizz). Constantine from Trevibban Mill (a fabulous Chardonnay based blend) and, from Knightor their award winning fizz – Vintage Cuvee 2011 and an intriguing sweet wine – Mena Hweg (which picked up the Critic’s Choice Trophy at this year’s Sommelier Wine Awards – that’s where the trade give you a proper pat on the back!)
In terms of accolades it’s been a cracking month for our local vineyards!
Trevibban Mill, Cornwall’s only organic vineyard (just outside of Padstow too) has become one of only two English wine producers ever to win a global award for red wine at the International Wine Challenge. Producing a decent red in England is no mean feat – particularly a Pinot Noir given how notoriously tricky that varietal can be to grow – so the silver IWC award is much deserved acknowledgement for team Trevibban. We’re certainly huge fans and we added this stunning local red to our terrace menu for you to enjoy by the glass this year. It’s already been flying out and there are limited stocks (honestly!) so you’d best come and try it quickly…
Cornwall’s most established vineyard, Camel Valley, won more of the 120 IWC medals that came to the UK than any other UK winemaker thereby cementing their position as the big boys on the English winemaking block! Included in their bumper haul of awards were seven silver awards and four bronzes. The Camel Valley Brut Rosé that we’ll have on by the glass during English Wine Week brought home one of those silver medals…as it has done for several years now. Stunning consistency from Bob, Annie and Sam Lindo and their dedicated team!
Not to be left out Knightor Winery also brought back an IWC silver for their stunning Vintage Cuvee 2011. As you’ll probably know, makers of English sparkling wines typically only declare a vintage when they feel that the crop that year is set to make a particularly notable wine. Otherwise they seek to achieve consistency from one year to the next which is why they (like their counterparts in Champagne) don’t usually have the vintage visible on their labels. Well 2011 was a belting year for Knightor’s crop and this cracking blend of Pinot Blanc and Chardonnany is now ridiculously quaffable! But don’t take my word for it – this special little number will also be available by the glass at BinTwo during English Wine Week
And as if that wasn’t enough to entice you, and although these lovely wines pretty much sell themselves, we’ll be offering 10% off when you buy any six English wines during English Wine Week. We really are too good to you…
Palacios Remondo La Vendimia 2014, Rioja is a juicy new addition to our terrace menu this year and is proving to be a very popular choice.
It is a medium bodied Rioja made from a blend of Tempranillo and Grenache grapes grown on 10 – 40 year old vines which haven’t been touched by any chemical fertilizers or pesticides for 7 years. This organic wine is aged in wooden vats and barrels for 5 years. A fruit forward, silky red is the result, with a palate of cherries and plums and a sweet spice on the nose.
It is a versatile Spanish red which can be served lightly chilled and is perfect for enjoying on our lovely terrace in the sunshine! A charcuterie and manchego cheese platter wouldn’t go amiss either.
This incredibly quaffable drop is £12.50 a bottle, so just £11.25 to our wine club members.