Browse Our Wines

Archive for April, 2013

The Mythical Bird of Promise

April 11th, 2013

We are delighted to introduce our newest vineyard to the Red Nose Wine stable of stars.

Kanu is the Mythical Bird of Promise and we have taken in 5 of their wines ( to start ).

All-the-wines

The Classic Dry White and the Rifle Range Red offer great value and punch well above their weight at €11.99

The Sauvignon Blanc gives fresh, zesty, green fruit flavours; whilst the Chenin complements with tangy tropical fruit, green melon and honeysuckle.

The Sauvignon Blanc gives fresh, zesty, green fruit flavours; whilst the Chenin complements with tangy tropical fruit, green melon and honeysuckle. The Rifle Range Red is  an easy drinking Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot blend offers tantalising aromas of biltong, dark chocolate and Christmas spices on the nose. Soft supple tannins and lingering mocha notes make this an amazingly accessible wine that combines the elegance of old world style wines, with new world fruit.

The Chenin Blanc comes in at €12.49 and it has a rich, welcoming nose with tropical nuances, freshly quartered guavas and undertones of green nettle. On the palate it is tropical, underpinned by a lively acidity. The wine creates a broad mid-palate, highlighted by hints of winter melon and even a trace of streaky minerality, leaving a lingering finish.

The Shiraz (€13.99) is concentrated, brooding with cherry black rim. It has a multi-layered nose: bitter chocolate, Marcello cherries, stewed rhubarb, milled pepper and rich mocha tones; all accentuated by a subtle vanilla. A perceptive sweetness follows onto the palate, highlighted by black fruit and touches of allspice. A sleek, muscled wine, well balanced acidity, layered richness and a long finish.

If you really want to treat yourself the GSM ( Grenache-Syrah-Mourvedre ) will blow your socks off. If you like Chateauneuf du Papes style wines, this might be for you ( for less money ). The deep ruby colour hints at the flavours to come… aromas of dark chocolate, juicy red berries and herbaceous notes tempt the nose whilst on the pallet mulberry and blackcurrant compote flavours balance out the well-structured tannins. It has spent 18 months in French barriques which gives a depth of flavour and elegance to this multidimensional wine. If this was a European wine it would be €30-€40 but its a snip at €19.99.

All the wines are available online or in the shop – a lot of them are open at the moment including the GSM so be quick…

We also came across some great videos on their website including a great one of the sound of wine fermenting

There was also another one from the harvest.

The Easter Article ( albeit a little late )

April 5th, 2013

What did you give up for lent? I gave up caffeine, sugar and bread. It was part of this regime I am partaking in with a bunch of lunatic warriors I started training with last summer. We swing Kettle Bells and do Crossfit challenges and all seem to share a slight addiction to pain, but with lots of gain. I can’t wait for my cup of coffee on Easter Sunday, served in bed ( hint to no one in particular ).

I was supposed to give up alcohol as part of it, but decided that coffee was enough of a sacrifice. I’m not super human, some times I barely even feel human, but that’s a different article. I do know that some people did give up the drink ( does wine really count? ) for lent. However, your day is nearly here. Easter Sunday will see you ready to enjoy a very nice bottle with the dinner. I am here to offer you guidance and support.

Easter offers a great excuse to trade up and enjoy the finer wines with your dinner. We will be closing the shop on Good Friday, so you’ll need to be in Thursday and Saturday to buy your special wines. While chocolate can of course be matched to wines with varying levels of success, I think lamb is a more suitable delicacy to pair up for that Easter Sunday dinner.

Lets blame the Greeks for everything

Lamb has some classic pairings that are already engrained in the wine vocabulary. There are a number of reasons for this. Going back thousands of years, to ancient Greece and into old France, Spain and Italy, the most popular meat was lamb. The sheep often grazed in the vineyards so the pairing was almost instinctive. Go to Greece (or even your local kebab shop) today and there is quite a lot of lamb on the menu. But add to this practicality, and the fact that the flavour of the lamb lends itself perfectly to wine.

I have my own favourite combinations when matching wines to lamb. It often depends on the cut of lamb and how it is prepared. If money is no object, then I would suggest a Pauillac from the Medoc region of Bordeaux. If your budget can’t stretch to a 1st growth Château Mouton Rothschild or even a 5th growth Lynch Bages, then there are plenty of substitutes.

Claret Anyone?

There are lots of really good value Bordeaux wines out there and it is the dry tannic nature of the Cabernet Sauvignon that reacts so well with the lamb. In fact we just took in three new Bordeaux’s ranging from €11.99 to €13.99. But why Cabernet and why Bordeaux?

For some it is the minty herbal nature of Cabernet that pairs so well with the lamb, and others think this is a load of rubbish. Pinot Noir tends to show off different sides of the lamb, so if it is not overly lean, I think the Pinot Noir can offer some great flavours.

A good rule of thumb is that a chewier meat should be matched to a chewier wine, and by this I mean a younger tannic wine. The meat will make the wines seem smoother than they would be on their own. Other wines that go with Lamb for much the same reasons are Spanish Rioja’s and Italian Chianti or Sangiovese varieties. The really great news is that I have a huge selection of all of the above at all prices.

If you wanted to get some great value for your purchases and were willing to step off of the road a little and go to a region that is not quite as famous, you can really do well. I’m talking about swapping your Rioja for a Navarra or for a Valencia. Try a Tuscan Sangiovese instead of a Chianti. You’d be surprised how good they can be. One of my best wines is a humble Cotes du Rhone but it is made by the man who makes my Chateauneuf du Papes and it punches way above it weight. Grapes find their expression in both the place and the winemaker’s guiding hand.

What about those white drinkers

For the white wine drinkers, I think you will be fine if you go with a heavier style wine. The Archange wine from Domaine des Anges is a perfect example of a full bodied oaked wine that would sit wonderfully with lamb. You could also try an oaked Chardonnay from Burgundy or possibly even the white wines from Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s estate in Provence, Chateau Miraval. Brad and Angie have recently gotten involved themselves.

”"

As mentioned the last time, we are finalizing plans for another wine course. This time we are looking at a few different options. We plan to repeat the classic 5 week course on a Thursday night but we are also looking at a slimmed down ½ day version, more than likely at the weekend.

Depending on interest, we have also investigated the possibility of some Magical Mystery Tours. This basically means a mini bus, a foodie destination with lots of wine to match. You do the drinking, we organize the driving. We can’t do it if we don’t get the numbers, so get in contact and express an interest ( if you have one ).

In the last article I mentioned Cheltenham and the few horses I chance every year. I’m delighted to tell you all that I ended up winning the Dalys Bar tipsters competition much to the horror of some of the more seasoned tipsters. I owe some of my genius selections to a Clonmel man living in Twickenham. Thanks Nigel.

Don’t forget to log onto the blog at www.rednosewine.com/blog or follow the ranting on Twitter – www.twitter.com/rednosewine

For anyone who would like more information and can’t make it into the shop, please feel free to contact me at info@rednosewine.com

“Life is much too short to drink bad wine”

Back in the Saddle again – the return of the Articles

April 5th, 2013

“It’s been a long time since Rock’n’Roll” – Sing that in a high pitched voice and insert a Jimmy Page guitar riff and you have a classic Led Zeppelin song. While I have in fact recently listened to some Rock’n’Roll on my new turntable ( Christmas present ), I am referring to the fact that it has been a long time since I presented an article for your delectable critique.

The post budget blues

You may have thought I have been curled up in a ball in a dark room rocking to and fro in shock from the 41% excise duty increase in December. Tempting as that solution might be, I decided to focus on improving on the great gains we made in 2012. Onwards and upwards and the search for newer wines is in full flight. As I write this three new wines arrived into the shop today, and there are loads more on the horizon.

I have been very busy looking at every wine we currently stock and seeing if it has a future or not. There are many criteria needed for a wine to stay in the Red Nose family and many will not survive but the good news is that makes room for more wines. These are strange times we live in and when you are asking people to part with money, you really have to consistently over deliver on the quality and value offering.

With that in mind, this last month saw us throw out the old to make way for the new. Our Pick-A-Dot Sale cleared out a lot of wines at up to 50% off and this allows room for the newer wines that have been exciting us to shine. There is still a little bit left, but not a lot. To make up for it, we have introduced a new mix case for €50 that is proving very popular.

WIne courses and dinners

Last October we held our first wine course and it was a huge success. After 5 weeks of tasting, swirling, spitting, swallowing and listening to me waffle on about wines, we held our last night in the StoneHouse restaurant’s private dining room and matched their fantastic tasting menu to some great wines.

The good news is that we are currently finalizing plans for another wine course. This time we are looking at a few different options. We plan to repeat the classic 5 week course on a Thursday night but we are also looking at a slimmed down ½ day version, more than likely at the weekend. Depending on interest, we have also investigated the possibility of some Magical Mystery Tours. This basically means a mini bus, a foodie destination with lots of wine to match. You do the drinking, we organize the driving.

If any of you are interested in Top End Bordeaux wines, you might want to get in contact with me. I have been offered some seriously good value on some of the very best wines in the world. I am talking about the top end wines for putting down, but at a fraction of the normal price. We are still talking about €30 a bottle and a minimum case purchase. Contact me directly at info@rednosewine.com if you want more details.

Smelling Swooshing and Spitting

A wine merchants calendar after the busy period that was Christmas is busier than you would think. Its not all accounts and stocktaking though. Traditionally this time of year we get invited to all manner of tastings. Last week I took the train to Dublin and was let loose on 256 wines from an importer I work with. Smell, Look, swish, inhale and spit. And so it went – whites first and then another lap of the hall to get the reds in. Experience has taught me to leave those big Barolos until the end. One is almost tempted to forget to spit those wines.

At this stage we import over 90% of our wines directly from small, large and in-between vineyards from all over the world, so the Irish trade tastings are not going to get you those real value driven wines or those little magical small vineyards that make this job so special. The do however serve a purpose and some of our favourite Italian wines ( such as Allegrini ) come via this route.

Later this month I am flying to Germany for the best Wine Trade show in Europe – ProWein. This will have vineyards from all over the world showing off their wares in 8 massive halls in the vast and very impressive Dusseldorf Messe convention centre.

Ireland really missed a trick not building one of these during the boom years. The Germans may not know much about debt relief but they sure know how to organize a trade fair. I’ve been to shows in France, Italy and London and this is by far the best. Hopefully, I’ll be writing about the wines I found soon

Are there Horses in Spain?

I think that Spain will become more and more important in the Irish wine world. It still has loads of great value regions that are unknown and very well priced. The punters in Cheltenham always look for value and sometimes a great Bordeaux at €30 can be great value and a €9 special offer wine is a waste of money. It is all about perspective. But I think regions like Navarra and Valencia offer true value when compared to Rioja and Ribero and we hope to find more at ProWein.

By the time this article goes to press, Cheltenham will be over and I’ll know how much value I managed to squeeze from the Tipsters draw in Careys and Dalys. In my experience value and Cheltenham do not go hand in hand. However I still smile when I remember shouting War of Attrition home in the Gold Cup. I met Mouse Morris about 6 months before and he said he thought the horse was a superstar. My little ante post wager came in at very nice odds. Let’s hope my trip to ProWein brings home a few winners as well.

As always, there is more information on the blog at www.rednosewine.com/blog or follow the ranting on Twitter – www.twitter.com/rednosewine

For anyone who would like more information and can’t make it into the shop, please feel free to contact me at href=”mailto:info@rednosewine.com”>info@rednosewine.com

“Life is much too short to drink bad wine”

Categories