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Classy Party 12

Classy Party 12 (Tier 1 & 2) 12 bottles

Classy Party 12

Price: ¥1,500

This pack was created to meet the requirement to have a collection of everyday and more serious wines all together, covering all the bases for any Festive Season (which, from my perspective, seems to cover the entire year, these days) or any larger social gatherings.

It is packed with wines we drink all the time and a couple kept for special occasions. Lay out these wines on a table for, say, a 50th birthday party, and relax.

To avoid any ‘supermarket dross’ wines, ban anyone from bringing wines to the event.

A little too OCD? Perhaps, but we firmly believe at LWwines that Life’s too short for bad wine.

Wines that have run out are replaced by similar following discussion with customers.

Please click on the wines listed below to extend/retract descriptions.

2x Callia Alta Shiraz Malbec Argentina, San Juan Tier 1

Tasting Intense violet wine with ruby tints. It is a wine of great aromatic intensity. Its prevailing penetrating and vigorous notes are ripe blackberries, plums and figs, which, together with their sweet tannins and balanced acidity, render a full-bodied wine with a long finish.

Food Matching: Perfect with pasta in rich sauce, Steaks, hearty dishes.

I don’t think it is possible to find a trustier everyday wine that can be enjoyed by lovers of both Old and New World styles. We sell a lot of this wine. Since its introduction in late spring 2011, it has quickly has become our top selling red wine.

Note: Won 2nd place in a serious Shanghai tasting competition for sub RMB100 wines. Callia is a winery to watch.

1x Camino de Castilla Ribera Del Duero Tempranillo Crianza Spain, Ribera Del Duero Tier 2

Intense blackberry colour. Spicy and intense nose, with liquorice and black pepper hints on a base of well ripened fruits (blackberry and cherry). On the palate, very fruity at first with ripened tannins, also persistent and full bodied.

Ribera Del Duero is a unique place in Europe. It has some of the most expensive wines in the World and relatively few people know it exists or where it is. That keeps some prices down, but not all! At has thrown up an absolute gem at a real bargain: a glimpse into the majesty that is the region. Out of the reach of many mortals, Vega Sicilia ( over ¥3000 a bottle) is grown within a day’s walk of our Camino De Castilla. Think Rioja with a similar fruit intensity, just a tad less oak. This is also a little lower priced than our Rioja crianzas. Can you guess which I drink more of?

The wine would be in it’s best light if served with something hot and well flavoured like grilled lamb cutlets with mint and thyme. A wonderful find for us. Exceptional value.

1x B.P. Rothschild Maipo Mapu Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon Chile, Maipo Tier 1

“Beautiful dark red. Aromas of black currant, blackberries and blueberries. The taste is fresh and elegant, with round and soft tannins that gives the wine excellent balance. The long and expressive finish rounds off a wonderful fruity and powerful wine.”

The site also goes on to say that mechanically harvested grapes are fermented at high temperature in stainless steel barrels for a ‘long time’ (to protect good balanced tannin structure) then spends 7 to 8 months ageing in stainless steel; this wine receives no oak at all. So, a lot of fruit, jammy almost with a hint of  mint;  no tobacco or cigar box notes. Its inexpensive to find out for yourself.

Me, I thought that for the price it was absolutely lovely, easy to drink and had enough interest to keep me satisfied. Great value in Chile at the moment.

1x Sella&Mosca La Cala DOC Italy, Sardinia Tier 2

What a shame. This wine was also just a bit too old and probably killed off by the same shop keeper I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, who returned it to us (he , who turned off the aircon last summer 2013 (when we put it in his shop) and he didn’t mend the fridge when it packed up. But, try as I might to lay all the blame at their useless feet, if honest, we can’t. Just most of it. This wine was probably getting long in the tooth anyway. 10.5pts (usually a 15-16.5pts)

HOWEVER (Big Fanfare), now that the fresh 2012 vintage has arrived we can relax and go back to the beauty of what was there before, zippy acidity & marine saltiness, somewhere between a Chardonnay & Sauvignon blanc (nearer to the latter?) and not a million miles from a Pinot Grigio, but with less ‘grapey-ness’. We hope to say that the 2012 will restore that crown.

1x Enrico Serafino Barbaresco DOCG Italy, Piedmont Tier 3

We have a treat here; a SERIOUS wine, SERIOUSLY well-priced.

Barbaresco is one of the world’s most important wines. This Special Italian red is a rich and seriously structured wine from the Piedmont region of Italy. The nose has intense violets and spices. The complex and velvet smooth flavours will reward the patient drinker further (and for many years). We are talking here strong food matches with game, grilled meats or cheeses.

Our Serafino Barbaresco is a mouthwatering treat. And no-one else has it.

Robert Parker gives the 2007 vintage an, ‘extraordinary’ 96/100 and ‘early maturing’ too; so a perfect storm of buy signals. Barbaresco has achieved ‘extraordinary’ only 7 times since 1970, and once in the last decade and this is that vintage.  Just a few 2007’s left. Now we are into 2009, a lovely vintage, also.

1x De Bortoli Sacred Hill Chardonnay Australia, Riverina Tier 1

Our top selling white, amazing quality for the price and a wine we drink at home every other week. This was a top seller even before vintage after vintage won competitions (Gold, Silver and Bronze medals around the world).

Pale straw with green hue. Zesty lemon citrus and stone fruit aromas balanced with buttery oak notes. “Yum Yum”, says the Wine Man. Fruit-driven wine with crisp acid, great texture and balance on the mid palate. The subtle oak approach has given added structure to the wine without overpowering it, leaving the citrus and stone fruit flavours to dominate.

In short: They got this spot on. It’s a major secret because the retailers are full or poor quality wines at the same price!

1x Zonin Nero D'Avola Italy, Sicily Tier 2

This 100% Nero d’Avola is an example of modern Italian wine-making on the historical wine-making island of Sicily. Used as part of the liberal Siciliane IGT designation.

Relatively dark but brilliant ruby-red. Broad and persistent, with evident and intense spicy scents as well as notes of almond blossoms. Dry and structured and showing outstanding roundness, the wine offers a sensation of complex fruitiness resembling that of cherries preserved in spirit, alternating with pleasant and highly persistent hints of spices. To be served at 18°C (64°F).

Food Combinations: A modern-styled blend variety that makes this wine a perfect complement to savoury first-course dishes dressed with meat sauces, roasts and aged cheeses. — quoted from zonin.co.uk

Like many regions, Sicily fully experienced Italy’s dismal post war viticultural bane: A long and glorious tradition unintentionally thwarted and terribly tarnished by Government over-subsidy and investment, which led mainly, to greater yields and lower associated quality wherever it took place. The decades long recovery, from the harm done to this region and the entire country’s reputation, has, at last, been restored.

Ignore the image above: We just don’t have the updated bottle/label picture yet. No one does!

1x Zonin Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie DOC Italy, Veneto Tier 2

Though the wine has evolved, sadly, the picture we have has not! Please ignore the one shown here. We just cannot find the correct one anywhere!

Pinot gris (aka Pinot Grigio) is a white wine grape variety, thought to be a mutant clone of the Pinot Noir grape. It normally has a greyish-blue fruit, accounting for its name (gris meaning “grey” in French) but the grape can have a brownish pink to black and even white appearance. The wines produced from this grape also vary in colour from a deep golden yellow to copper and even a light shade of pink. The clone of Pinot Gris grown in Italy is known as Pinot Grigio.

Appealing straw-yellow colour with delicate green reflections. Delicately fruity, medium bodied and refined. Lightly dry, yet extremely fresh. It also offers a delicious reminder of the original grape. It’s light and elegant structure makes this an unusually refined and aristocratic wine, especially at this price point.

Food Matching: It combines particularly well with delicate appetizers, pasta courses with light sauces and white meats. In addition, it makes a fine aperitif.

Popular with those who like a wine to be drier and fresh with some appealing fruit notes.

1x B.P. Rothschild Maipo Mapu Sauvignon Blanc Chardonnay Chile, Maipo Tier 1

Bright and brilliant pale yellow. Fresh and elegant, it opens on grapefruit and mango notes. A fresh elegant attack leads into a succulent mid-palate that starts on citrus and goes on to develop notes of tropical fruit, building to a lively and well-balanced finish.

We would have to say that the Rothschild forays into Chile have been great for the consumer. They are in the Mapu range producing the golden bullet wines we seek: low cost wines punching above their weight in a sturdy, consistent and agreeable way.

1x Zonin Sparkling (Spumante) Rose Italy, Veneto Tier 2

This has wings. Flies out the door every spring and summer. This is what we drink at home when there’s a birthday or other special. We call it Pink Prosecco which it is in everything but name. Here’s what the web tells us:

A lightly-coloured sparkling rose with a fine, persistent & seductively delicate perlage (That means a nice ‘mousse’ or bubbles to you and me). Pleasant, intense and fruity, evoking memories of wisteria flowers and Renetta apples. (That means it smells nice too). Well-blended and delightful. On the palate it is soft and smooth with floral notes and a hint of almond. (All true!)

Food Matching: Excellent as an aperitif and an ideal accompaniment to hors d’oeuvres risottos, fragrant fried food and grilled fish. (and if memory serves, dishes with a cream sauce, shellfish, sole/halibut, salmon, tuna, Mild cheese and cream based dips).

1x Zonin Prosecco - Black Bottle Italy, Veneto Tier 2

The Best Selling Prosecco in the world…and for a reason that matters. The perfect storm of style, sophistication and quality. Prosecco is always more easily accessible than either drier Cavas and Champagnes, certainly, fruitier and I don’t know how to put this: MORE FUN. Not much else to say, other than…it always satisfies.

Luminous, brilliant straw yellow. Intense, fruity, aromatic, with scents of wisteria. Extremely pleasant, with a lightly nutty finish.

Food Matching: An excellent aperitif, it can also accompany dishes that are not too rich; ideal with fruit salad.

Reviews and Scores: Vintage , 87/100 , Wine Enthusiast , “A Best Buy” June 2006

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