rioja

It’s Official! Our Wines are Award Winning!

Brut RoseYou may have seen our recent post about our award winning Forest Gin.

Well it seems our wines have stepped up to the challenge at the 2017 Decanter World Wine Awards too.

Deutz achieved bronze awards with both their Brut Classic and Brut Rose champagnes and our Beronia Reserva 2012 achieved an impressive Silver award.

We’ll toast to that!

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Christmas Drinks Guide

When it comes to Christmas Day, while the turkey is usually the star of the show, we think the wine should get top billing. So here’s our guide to wine pairings for Christmas lunch.

Aperitif

Whether you choose to enjoy while opening gifts or when guests arrive, nothing sets the tone for a fabulous lunch better than a glass of champagne. So let the corks pop, the bubbles flow and the good times roll with our Deutz Brut Classic Champagne.

Alternatively, if you fancy offering guests something a bit different our Forest Gin and Gonzalez Byass 12 Anos Palo Cortado Sherry are bound to delight, while not over filling hungry tums.

The Main Event

Turkey

Turkey is a medium-weight poultry with a delicate flavour, so it’s important not to over power the turkey with the wine. For red wines, go for lighter wines, such as Pinot Noir, while a slightly fuller bodied white wine such a Chardonnay will also work well.

We recommend our Undurraga Sibaris Reserva Especial Pinot Noir 2013 and Jackson Estate Shelter Belt Chardonnay 2011.

Roast Beef

BodegasBeroniaReserva2010-2000x2000

If you’ve opted for a rich, rib of beef then our Beronia Reserva 2010 DOCa Rioja works a treat.

Venison

Montepulciano

Venison is a rich, lean gamey meat which works well with medium-bodied red wines. Our Cantina Zaccagnini Tralcetto Montepulciano D’Abruzzo 2013 is a perfect pick.

Salmon

Chardonnay is an obvious pick for Salmon (see our Jackson Estate Shelter Belt Chardonnay 2011) but our Cantina Campagnola Bardolino Chiaretto Classico 2013 is an excellent rose alternative.

Digestif

Noval Silval 2005

Quite simply, it wouldn’t be Christmas without a Port. Our Quinta do Noval Silval Vintage Port is exquisite and the perfect way to round off a wonderful Christmas.

Cheers!

Deutz Rose Champagne, perfect for a celebration with fizz!

It’s a girl!

The birth of a new baby is always a wonderful excuse for a celebration – and the birth of a new princess is certainly no exception!

In the days since the birth of Princess Charlotte a number of companys have joined in the celebrations with special creations and giveaways. From a chocolate pram made by Cadbury to free entry to theme parks, the celebrations look set to continue. Lucky girls named Charlotte can even enjoy a free glass of house wine at Bierkeller, Manchester on Friday and Saturday.

Despite not being legally entitled to drink alcohol for more than 17 years, the new princess has even had a cocktail created in her honour. Visitors to Tiger Hornsby in Newcastle will be able to buy a special blend of Veuve Cliquot Champagne, Bitter Truth Elderflower Liqueur and pomegranate syrup.

Souvenir hunters will be on the hunt for unusual memorabilia. For Rioja lovers, the focus will be on vintages from this year. In 1982, the year both Kate Middleton and Prince William were born, the Rioja vintage was rated excellent. Here’s hoping the 2015 can live up to expectations, but we’ll just have to wait to find out.

And this is just to celebrate the birth. Just as with Prince George, we’re sure that Charlotte will be inundated with gifts at her christening. Our personal top pick would be a bottle of vintage port which can be saved to enjoy on her 18th birthday.

In the meantime though, we simply propose to toast our newest princess with a glass of Deutz rose champagne! Perfect for princesses everywhere (royal or otherwise).

¡Ay, caramba!, Rioja On The Rise In The UK

Here at Charles Rose we love Rioja. So it was no surprise to us that The Telegraph recently reported that one in twenty of all bottles sold in the UK is Rioja.

Spain has more land dedicated to vineyards than any other country in the world, just under 1.2 million hectares. Rioja is a beautiful region with DOC status, sitting just below the Cantabrian Mountains along the Ebro river. 34% of all the wine produced in Rioja ends up in the UK, thats around 36 million litres, 10% more than the previous year!

We are Rioja’s biggest export market, with sales of Rioja accounting for £220 million, around 4% of the total UK wine market. Why? Because we love it, and our appetite is growing!

The popularity of tapas is on the rise, so says the Telegraph, bringing with it a surge in demand for Rioja. Personally, we think the quality of wines coming out of Rioja have never been better. Renewed interest in Rioja will only bring greater consumption as people discover or rediscover just how good it is.

Rioja is also fantastic value for money. Around a third of all the Rioja consumed in the UK is Reserva, which can be as much as ten times cheaper than an equivalent Bordeaux. The Telegraph quite rightly raises the question of whether or not Rioja sales might soon outstrip sales of French wines. Bordeaux has unparalleled heritage, but this comes at a price!

A new generation of younger wine consumers faced with a choice between a cheaper Spanish wine and a much more expensive French wine might well save the latter for a special occasion.

So if you haven’t yet jumped on board the good ship Rioja, we suggest you join us and pick up a bottle! Cheers!

(Just in case you were about to google ¡Ay, caramba!, it is Spanish, wikipedia says so.)

Image is “Viñedo-en-Ventosa-LaRioja” by Jesús García – Propra verko. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Charles Rose Wines Mentioned In Decanter Magazine!

This is going to seem a little self-congratulatory, and possibly a little over the top, but there you go. As a small business, run by a single family, we celebrate our successes and victories no matter how small!

We love fine wine, and we know that finding a good one can be difficult and time-consuming so we are here to save you the trouble. We purposefully stock a small, select range that we have researched (not just consumed) so that you can be confident you are buying a good product.

As such, it is always gratifying to see our products in Decanter Magazine. Arguably, one of the best known wine magazines, published in over 90 countries. It’s a trusted source for wine lovers and a great way to discover what is happening around the world in the wine industry.

We were over the moon to find that in Decanter’s March Edition, two of the products we stock are mentioned and we are listed as a supplier! We know, it’s a small thing, but great to see that we have chosen some great products that we have priced competitively!

So, what were they?

Undurraga, T.H. Cabernet Sauvignon,Pirque, AltoMaipo 2012


UndurragaTHCabernetSauvignonAltoMaipo2012Decanter said this in their article “Chilean Cab: where quality meets value”:

From one of the highest areas in Maipo, this is a graceful Cabernet, filled with ripe yet refreshing flavours of red fruit and spices, its medium body delivering intense tannins. Perfectly ready for grilled meat but will evolve.

This is a wine with pedigree, with previous vintages reviewing well in Decanter Wine Reviews (95/100 for the 2011 vintage) and the International Wine Challenge (Gold in 2013 for the 2010 vintage).

So, get it while you can as production is limited to 2,700 cases – so when it’s gone, it’s gone!

Beronia, Rioja Reserva 2010


BodegasBeroniaReserva2010-2000x2000Decanter said this in their article “Panel Tasting: Rioja £8-25”:

Fragrant herbal nose with cedar spice. Much oak is promised but it’s well handled. Supple, juicy palate with well-integrated tannins and a full body.

This fantastic wine also has pedigree, with the 2009 vintage scoring well in the Decanter World Wine Awards (Silver in 2014) and the International Wine Challenge (Gold in 2013).

Admittedly, we are a bit biased towards rioja, we love the vibrant flavours and the fruit, and this example is no exception.

It’s a luscious deep red wine with hints of black cherry and a sweet refined finish.


If you’d like further information on either of these wines then visit the links to our product pages above, or visit our website. Please excuse us for blowing our own trumpet!

Rioja Classifications: know Your Reserva From Your Crianza

Here at Charles Rose Wines we love Rioja. There a few different types when classified by age.

If you have ever wondered about the difference between Reserva and Crianza then let us fill you in!

Oak

There are four classifications of Rioja. The differences centre on how long they have been left to age in oak.

It is impossible to talk about Rioja without mentioning oak.

Oak has been a part of Rioja production for around three centuries and is key in producing a Rioja’s hallmark vanilla flavours.

Originally it was French oak barrels which were used. Increasingly, American oak is now a popular alternative. Many producers use both. How many oak barrels might a winery own? Probably around 10,000… at least!

So, the four classifications of Rioja are as follows.

Rioja

Wines labelled as simply ‘Rioja’ have spent less than a year in an oak ageing barrel.

Crianza

Red wines must have been aged for a minimum of two years.

White and rosé wines must have been aged for at least a year.

For all three types a minimum of six months must be spent ageing in oak.

Reserva

Red wines must have been aged for a minimum of three years with at least a year in oak.

White and rosé wines must have been aged for at least two years with a minimum of six months in oak.

Gran Reserva

Red wines require a minimum of five years of ageing with at least 18 months in oak.

White and rosé wines require at least four years of ageing with a minimum off six months in the bottle.

What do we stock?

We carry our favourite Rioja, a Beronia Rioja Reserva because we believe it is offers the best balance between taste and price. This particular wine is aged in French and American oak for 20 months with a further 18 months in the bottle.

If you have a favourite Rioja then let us know! Get in contact by email or leave a comment.

What’s up DOC?

Ever wondered what the Denominación de Origen Calificada (DOC) statement on the label of a Rioja means?

Spain has more land dedicated to vineyards than any other country in the world. In 1932 it introduced laws governing the quality of Spanish wine.

Spanish wines are divided into four categories; two that have Quality Wines Produced in a Special Region (QWPSR) status and two that do not.

QWPSR is an EU classification which protects the geographical origins of products. It guarantees that Champagne can only be called so if it comes from the Champagne region.

The four Spanish classifications are as follows:

Vino de Mesa; literally table wine. The lowest grade available often made from a blend of wines from different regions and can only say ‘Product of Spain’ on the label.

Vino de la Tierra – VdlT or VT; indicating wine of the country. Made from wine from a specific region and may use the name of that region on the label.

Denominación de Origen – DO; QWPSR status dictates that wines with this classification are sourced from designated wine growing regions and are produced to exacting standards.

Denominación de Origen Calificada – DOC / DOCa / DOCq; this is reserved for the DO regions that produce wines of exceptional quality. Only two of the 89 regions in Spain have achieved this, Rioja and Priorat.

If Rioja is your thing make sure it has a label on it like the one below.

Seal

If you are interested in Rioja then why not try our Beronia Reserva.