Like most businesses January is the time for us to look back at the year and see what worked, what didn’t, and what patterns emerged. One of the main things we noticed was the number of requests for single bottles or cases to be split into smaller quantities. We have always been keen to offer our customers the opportunity to buy a variety of wines for the purposes of tasting rather than just investing. Getting to know new regions, grape varieties or styles can be awkward if wines are only available in cases of twelve or six.
Therefore, over the next few weeks we will be re-assessing our stock in order to increase the number of wines we sell by the bottle as well as reducing the minimum purchase quantities for a selection of wines from across all regions.
In the meantime, here is a list of wines we already sell by the bottle that are good examples of where opportunities lie to try something new or possibly acquire a top Grand Cru without having to invest in a full case.
2015 Domaine des Lambrays Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru £280 per bottle
The Clos de Lambrays vineyard (of which Domaine des Lambrays owns most of) has a reputation for powerful but elegant Burgundy with great balance. The 2015 is young but this is a wine that is always highly rated and prices have a tendency to increase over the years. Buying a single bottle now to keep for drinking in five years time will provide pleasure without such a hefty price tag.
2014 Chateau Batailley Pauillac Cinquieme Cru £52 per bottle Well-made Pauillac from a decent vintage that is just coming into its drinking window. Bordeaux is a region where loose bottles from the mid-age vintages are hard to come by. If you like to buy in smaller quantities than twelve you either have to drink your Bordeaux young or fairly old. A middle ground would be sensible.
1991 Marchesi Antinori Tignanello Toscana IGT £145 per bottle
Tignanello, made predominiatly from Sangiovese, is a wine that has been designed to age, unlike it’s contemporary Chianti. So trying older vintages from one of the first Super Tuscans will show you what it can really do.
Or maybe it just happens to be someone’s 30th birthday this year.
2017 Didier Dagueneau Silex Pouilly-Fume £160 per bottle
Dagueneau is credited with revitalising the reputation of Sauvignon Blanc with his highly acclaimed Pouilly-Fume. Since his death in 2008 his son and daughter have been in charge of wine-making and have continued the high quality, low yield production. The single vineyard Silex is always highly regarded and offers a different side of Sauvignon Blanc.
2005 Paul Jaboulet Aine Domaine de Saint Pierre Cornas £50 per bottle
Cornas has been growing in popularity and reputation over the last 15 years and the price has increased to reflect this which is a real shame. We say this because Cornas needs time to settle and most loose bottles are only sold in the newer releases. Getting to know Cornas from well-aged vintages will provide a much better understanding of what this region and style has to offer.
2005 Villa Canestrari Amarone della Valpolicella ‘Riserva 1888’ £75 per bottle
Maybe you’ve heard of Amarone but never had the chance to try it. This a lovely, fruit driven Amarone with lots of body but a great earthy, rounded finish that clearly shows what a good quality offering should taste like.
2004 Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Rioja Reserva DOCa £49 per bottle
Classic Rioja from a top quality producer with a good amount of age behind it. Surprisingly, single bottles of old (but not too old) Rioja are hard to find but offer great value and wonderful drinking.