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What winemakers are drinking this Christmas
It is that time of year again when it is time to plan which wines you are drinking over the festive period. We thought we would ask some of our favourite winemakers and estates what they are planning to drink, to help give you some inspiration. Special thanks to Charles Philipponnat for his detailed response, he will certainly be enjoying an ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON December 12, 2019
What Winemakers are Drinking this Christmas 2018
Last week we shared our Christmas wine recommendations, but who knows best what to serve at the Christmas table, than those working on-the-ground in the vineyards, wineries and Chateaux? We spoke to some of our winemaking friends from around the world about what they will be drinking this festive season... Victor Charcan - **Bodegas Roda (Rioja, Spain)** I am the wine supplier ...
ON December 20, 2018
Kracher: Celebrating 60 Years of World-Class Sweet Wines
Weingut Kracher, one of Austria's finest producers, is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year. Kracher has been hugely influential in raising the reputation of Austrian fine wine and continues to produce wines of the highest quality with staggering consistency. We met with Gerhard Kracher, the third generation of Kracher currently at the helm, to find out the fascinating history of ...
ON March 8, 2019
Matching Christmas Food and Wine
With all the work that goes in to planning festive catering, it’s important to choose wines that flatter your culinary creations. While this might seem a daunting prospect at first, matching Christmas food and wine needn't be a minefield, and we're happy to guide your choices – leaving you with one less thing to stress about. (If only we could ...
ON November 30, 2015
What To Drink This Christmas - F+R Employee Picks
With the festive season fast approaching, many of our customers are looking to stock up their cellars with the perfect red, white and sparkling wines in time for Christmas celebrations. From dazzling champagnes to warming clarets, this is a great time of year to put some sparkle into your wine collection, and whether you’re looking for things to flatter your ...
ON November 25, 2015
Argentina's Finest Wines
F+R: You have travelled all over the world visiting vineyards – where have been the most inspirational places you have visited and why? Edgardo del Popolo: I enjoy travelling and meeting people (especially those who do the same as I do) and I like a vast array of places with their particularities. But what I really think makes a difference ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON October 18, 2019
Top Wines + Spirits of 2019: FINE+RARE Staff Picks
This year the team at FINE+RARE encountered some astonishing bottles on our quest to source the finest wines and spirits from around the world. We asked our colleagues to highlight some of their favourites from 2019... Corentin Margier – Head of Buying Unicorn Wine/Spirit of the Year (something you are unlikely to taste/ experience again): Clos Vougeot 1937, Maison Leroy The ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON December 18, 2019
Adventures in Winemaking: Establishing a Vineyard in Yunnan
Alex Xu is a fine wine pioneer on a journey to grow compelling Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from his recently planted vineyard (淼庐 Miao Lu) in China's mountainous, southwesterly province of Yunnan. His approach to winemaking is rooted in a love for the place and the process, taking him on adventures across the world of fine wine to perfect his craft. ...
ON February 28, 2019
299 Points Wines
It's not often that you get the opportunity to taste 299 points of wines in one sitting, but last Thursday we got to do just that. Dimitri Mesnard, from Jackson Wine Estates, dropped into our offices to present Verité's spectacular 2008s, along with 2008 Lokoya, 2008 Cardinale and chief winemaker, Pierre Siellan's wines from Chateau Lassegue in St Emillon and ...
BY FINE+RARE,
ON June 25, 2012
Rags to Riches - Fine Wine's Best Success Stories
From shipwrecks to blighted vines, Claire Huxley examines five wineries whose path to success involved a couple of bumps in the road. Introducing the unlikely stars of fine wine...  Here at FINE+RARE, we know that each and every bottle has a story to tell. For some of the wines we sell, those stories stretch back centuries; for others, they are just ...
ON December 11, 2015
Roaming the Rhone - Wines, Vines and the 2015 Harvest...
Buyer Jessica Bryans reports back from FINE+RARE trip to Rhone, with producer profiles and a very early look at what could be a phenomenal vintage...  The Rhone Valley’s Wines From the Epic 2015 Harvest Could be Excellent... If you take one thing away from this report, it should be this – 2015 could be one of the great vintages of the ...
ON October 12, 2015
Paired to Perfection: Matching Festive Food + Fine Wine
The excitement is building at F+R HQ over which wines to crack open during the festive period. It’s time to agonise over those extensive menus and work out which bottles will please all of your guests, while at the same time being worthy enough to stand up to all the rich and varied flavours of Christmas. We have put together ...
ON December 14, 2018
Three Stunning Wines to Buy Now
At FINE+RARE we’re in the fortunate position of being able to taste a lot of wine. Some is great, some average and others, surprisingly occasionally poor. But every so often a wine gets opened in out tasting room that absolutely floors us and three have done just that in recent weeks. They are so good that we instantly took all ...
ON September 15, 2015
The Great Wines of Italy Tasting
Last Friday, James Suckling, in association with Hong Kong Tatler, hosted the Great Wines of Italy event in the Four Seasons Hotel. This is the third year that this successful event has been held. Over two hundred wines from seventy-seven producers, including Bibi Graetz, Castello Banfi, Ceretto, Fontodi, La Spinetta, Luce della Vita, Masi, Ornellaia, Poderi, Aldo Conterno, Roberto Voerzio, Siro Pacenti, ...
ON December 12, 2014
Iconic USA Wines
1. 2015 Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon WA Score: 100pts "Composed of 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc, the very deep purple-black colored 2015 Screaming Eagle leaps from the glass with notes of freshly crushed black currants, black cherries and blackberries with suggestions of cigar box, black raspberries, red currants, chocolates, pencil lead and cast-iron pan plus a ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON August 16, 2019
The Great Wines of The World Tasting
Jacky Cheng with James Suckling at the Great Wines of the World Tasting Last Friday James Suckling, in association with Hong Kong Tatler, hosted the fifth ‘Great Wines of the World' tasting at the Four Season’s Hotel, Hong Kong. The event featured wines from 11 countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Chile, France, Italy, New Zealand, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain and US from ...
ON November 6, 2014
Wines from Syria – Making Wine on the Frontline
On my recent trip to Lebanon this winter I was introduced to wines from a fully operational winery in Syria. With the utterly devastating and continuing civil war in Syria over the last 7 years, initially I thought it couldn’t be possible that such a thing could exist. On tasting the wines at an artisan market in Beirut I was also ...
ON January 25, 2019
Six iconic Burgundy wines
1. 2012 Romanee Conti Domaine De La Romanee Conti Average Score: 99pts Neal Martin (99 pts) - Usually, choosing between La Tache and Romanee-Conti is like choosing between your two favourite children. Not this year. The 2012 Romanee-Conti is one of the most spellbinding that I have tasted since I began 17 years ago. The bouquet is quite astonishing with ...
ON August 30, 2019
Barolo 2010: Brilliant Wines from the Most Exciting Wine Region in the World Today
Barolo is similar to Burgundy in more ways than one, and it’s no coincidence that if you ask a Burgundian what his or her favourite region outside Burgundy is then many will say Barolo. The first obvious parallel is the use of a single grape variety: Pinot for Burgundy, Nebbiolo for Barolo, and this parallel is amplified somewhat by the ...
ON March 3, 2014
2008 Fine Wine Horizontal: Cardinale fronts up to Mouton Rothschild, Vega Sicilia & Sine Qua Non
On a recent visit to London celebrating the upcoming release of the 2015 Cardinale; Barbera Banke and Julia Jackson from Jackson Family Wines wanted to prove that their flagship Napa Valley wine - Cardinale deserves to sit alongside other more established iconic fine wines at a similar price point. It’s no mean feat going up against such historic estates as ...
ON October 11, 2018
BLANKbottle: Introducing the wines of Pieter H. Walser
Pieter H. Walser, the man behind BLANKbottle, is one of the most inventive, energetic and productive winemakers in the Western Cape. He produces 30+ cuvees a year, each with its own unique story and presented in a "blank" bottle... well not exactly! The bottles have no mention of varietal but tend to have an artistic interpretation of what’s inside. It ...
ON March 1, 2019
Fine Wine Epiphany
FINE+RARE asked eminent experts within the wine trade if they remember the wine moment that changed everything. From accidental finds to unexpected recommendations, these are their fine wine epiphanies...  Do you remember the fine wine that changed everything for you? That eureka moment that catapulted wine to a whole new level? At FINE+RARE we call that a Fine Wine Epiphany. ...
ON February 25, 2016
Top 10 Wines of 2016
2016 was a huge year for FINE+RARE, with more wines, vintages and regions sold than ever before. As ever, our customers proved eclectic and diverse in their choices, with huge sales in wines from all over the world. From Bordeaux to Burgundy, Champagne to Port, here are our Top 10 Wines of 2016... BORDEAUX: Chateau Margaux 2015 It will come as ...
ON January 10, 2017
Breakfast with Cloudburst Wines
London’s premier sommeliers gathered to taste Cloudburst wines over breakfast with founder and winemaker Will Berliner and FINE+RARE his exclusive UK distributor… On Thursday 21 September over a breakfast of bagels and fresh fruit, FINE+RARE hosted an exclusive Cloudburst Masterclass for the London’s top sommeliers. Take a peek behind the scenes… Cloudburst Wines' Will Berliner The unassuming and softly spoken ...
ON September 22, 2017
Five Revolutionary Wines
Rebellion is in the air and FINE+RARE love an innovator, so we take a look at five revolutionary wines… With a history stretching back several millennia, it goes without saying that winemaking is rooted in tradition. Some of the most-loved wines are the result of generations of expertise. However, every now and then a winemaker comes along who rips up ...
ON August 2, 2018
Unmissable Wines This July
For many in the wine trade, July and August are a hiatus between the Bordeaux EP campaign and the flurry of releases we will see in September.  Not here! Call us impatient but there are too many wines in the line-up to our clients that we are absolutely bursting to offer. Summer is definitely an exciting period. The F+R buying ...
BY Katie Reading,
ON July 5, 2019
The Other Wines of Gaja
It was a big decision for this Piedmont producer to invest in another region of Italy but Montalcino seemed to be the logical choice. Angelo Gaja explained to us there are obvious parallels between Barolo/Barbaresco and Montalcino, both regions of prestige for fine wine, both made from indigenous varieties and from single varietals that undergo extensive elevage. For Angelo that ...
ON July 19, 2019
Meet the Winemaker: Q&A with René Rostaing
Jessica Bryans interviews esteemed Côte Rôtie winemaker René Rostaing on his career and his thoughts on the Rhone Valley... Meet the Winemaker Q & A with **René Rostaing** ** **“Wine is made from grapes, not from trees!” That was how esteemed Côte Rôtie winemaker René Rostaing responded when I asked about the oak treatment in his wines during a recent visit to the ...
ON December 18, 2015
Five Wines To Blow The Budget
*From special gifts to the drink of a life time, there are some wines worth blowing the budget for. We round up five of the best wines that money can buy... * A birthday, an anniversary, the crowning jewel of a life-time’s collection; sometimes an occasion calls for extravagance. Whether you’re celebrating a special date or simply looking for a sip ...
ON July 27, 2017
Five Wines Big In Asia
Asian-based clients make up a significant proportion of our customers and China is considered to be the world's most exciting emerging wine market. With that in mind, we take a look at five wines that have trended in the East this year...  While the wine trade may have traditionally centered on Europe, in modern times all eyes are firmly on the ...
ON August 4, 2017
The Red Grapes of Fine Wine
We look at the red grapes that make up the finest wines in the world. Where are they grown? What’s their unique character? What makes them so special? Cabernet Sauvignon – From the Left-Bank of Bordeaux It Has Conquered the Globe The most noble and aristocratic of the red grapes, its thick skin and rich fruit always mean long-lived ...
ON October 19, 2015
Le Grappin: Wines of Site + Soul
In the midst of this golden age of Burgundy there is so much more to these Cote d’Or slopes than just the Premier and Grand Cru sites cultivated by the established superstars of the region. Le Grappin is a prime example of the new wave of vignerons who have been drawn to Burgundy by that "eureka" moment; that one special ...
ON February 22, 2019
The Most Iconic Rhône Wines
1. Domaine Guigal Cote Rotie “La Mouline” 89% Syrah, 11% Viognier. The vine age ranges from 50 to 100 years grown on 1 hectare of vines planted in the Côte Blonde district of Côte Rôtie. Jeff Leve describes La Mouline as “one of the most exotic and erotic wines on the planet!... The texture is unlike any other wine in ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON August 1, 2019
Where Winemakers Eat: Part 1
As we look ahead into the New Year, our heads are full of ideas of things to see and do in 2020. For any true epicurean, a list of top restaurants to visit in the next twelve months requires serious deliberation. To help inspire you, we asked some of our favourite winemakers from around the world to give their local ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON January 2, 2020
Wines To Watch in January 2020
January is the month in which our Burgundy 2018 En Primeur campaign really hits top gear with the majority of domaines releasing their wines to market for the first time. Stay tuned for releases from Groffier, Lamarche, Gros Frère et Sœur and many more, including our top picks from Domaine Hudelot Noellat and Domaine Tortochot. Outside of the En Primeur ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON January 2, 2020
Wines Not to Miss in February 2020
Dal Forno's flagship Amarone and Valpolicella from the much celebrated 2013 vintage are due for release in the first part of the month, as is the annual Maison Leroy release. Domaine Leroy and Domaine d’Auvenay are due out nearer the end of the month or early March. We will also be focusing on regions outside of Italy and France that ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON January 30, 2020
Fine Wine: Can you define it?
FINE+RARE interviewed wine lovers and wine trade experts, including a couple of Masters of Wine, to answer the age-old question: “What is a fine wine?” Our conclusion might not be quite what you expected… What is a fine wine? Ringo Starr said: “Drumming is my middle name.” He lied. It isn’t. He doesn’t have one. And as most of you ...
ON December 18, 2015
Five Wines With Architectural Grand Designs
Beautiful wines deserve to be made in beautiful surroundings. Here are five of the wine world's greatest architectural gems... Museums, stadiums, opera houses: cutting-edge architecture is often associated with the entertainment sector. With its traditional chateaux and functional barrel rooms, the wine world may have long seemed pedestrian in comparison. This is no longer the case. We take a look ...
ON July 13, 2017
The Rise of Chile's Fine Wine Icons
The first couple of weeks of September see the new vintage releases of Chile’s most famous and highly revered wines: Sena, Chadwick, Almaviva and Clos Apalta. These are wines that consistently receive huge scores from critics and have been on an upward trajectory in quality over the last 10 years. This year, the upcoming release of Clos Apalta was awarded 100 ...
ON September 4, 2018
Designing It Differently: Five Unique Wineries
Great wineries come in many guises. Cutting-edge, contemporary architecture always turns heads, creating monoliths to winemaking on the landscape. Yet there are also plenty of more understated design features incorporated into chateau cellars that deserve a moment in the spotlight - whether to celebrate their technical innovation, unconventional use of raw materials or even conservation of tradition. From the show-stopping to the subtle, we take a look ...
ON September 28, 2018
Heroic Viticulture - The Unique Wines of Priorat
This week we caught up with Valenti Llagostera, one of the great Priorat producers from the Mas Doix winery. Valenti's knowledge of the region is unparalleled and fascinating to listen to - from its extraordinary history, its unique soils, its fateful battle with phylloxera, and it meteoric rise back onto the global stage. Priorat is one of the top appellations in Spain, being one of just two wine ...
ON December 14, 2018
The Top Wines of 2018 - According to the Critics
As we sing in the New Year, it seems like the opportune moment to reflect on the highlights of 2018. Last year saw some wonderful wine releases from around the world, aptly showcased in the critics' Top Wines of 2018 round-ups. We are living in an age where preserving tradition, embracing technology and sharing knowledge have never been greater. Couple ...
ON January 3, 2019
Roberto Cipresso: The Master of Marginal Winemaking
Roberto Cipresso is a winemaker with a reputation for extreme marginal winemaking; he is determined to push the boundaries of how and where it is possible to produce wine. We made his acquaintance after being introduced to him by the team at Venissa, the unique vineyard located in the Venetian lagoon. Venissa is just one of Roberto’s many winemaking consultancies, with ...
ON March 15, 2019
Winehog's Early Impressions on the Burgundy 2018s
F+R: How good is 2018 as a vintage – does it live up to the hype? Steen Ohman: 2018 was a hot year – compared by some to 1947. But despite the warm conditions, the quality of the wines on average seems to be very fine, hence living up to some of the vintage’s initial hype. The 2018 vintage is, ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON October 3, 2019
Critics Round-Up - Top Wines of 2019
At this time of the year the leading wine critics reflect on their wine highlights of the year. We look at some of the top picks from Antonio Galloni, James Suckling, James Halliday and Jeb Dunnuck whose range and variety only highlight the current health of the world of fine wine today. We identify some of their top picks for ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON January 8, 2020
Beyond Burgundy: Europe's Other Fine Wine Region for Pinot Noir
F+R have sourced a parcel of some of the finest Pinot Noirs coming out of Germany, a diverse region that is today arguably producing the most exciting Pinot Noirs in Europe, outside of Burgundy. Top examples are world class and offer both similarities and important differences to the Cote d’Or. We arranged a tasting of some of the ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON February 5, 2020
Australian Fine Wine: Langton's Classification Tasting
Find out more about our recent tasting of over fifty of Australia's finest and rarest wines... The Tasting On Monday 21 March FINE+RARE held an exclusive tasting of wines from the Langton’s Classification in association with Wine Australia. The event offered a unique opportunity for attendees, as there had not been a tasting of Australian fine wine of this quality ...
ON March 24, 2016
2015 Burgundy: According to Winehog's Steen Öhman
Winehog's Steen Öhman is fast becoming one of the world's leading and most respected Burgundy experts. FINE+RARE have interviewed him to bring you his views on 2015 Burgundy... As the man behind Winehog, Steen Öhman's opinions, tasting notes, detailed maps and in depth knowledge of Burgundy's intricate terroir are invaluable tools to the serious Burgundy collector. That's why FINE+RARE asked ...
ON November 23, 2016
Five Wines To Watch: Best Insider Buys
Stay ahead of the curve with these hand-picked recommendations, from Bordeaux to the Margaret River...  Whether it’s discovering a new band or stumbling across a pop-up restaurant, we all like to spot a rising star. Wine is no different. In an increasingly diverse and complicated market, one of the most common requests we hear from customers is to help them ...
ON July 20, 2017
Burgundy 2016: According to Winehog’s Steen Öhman
FINE+RARE interviewed Winehog’s Steen Öhman - one of the world’s leading and most respected Burgundy experts - to bring you his take on Burgundy 2016… Winehog, with its tasting notes, detailed maps and incredible insight into Burgundy’s intricate terroir, is invaluable to any serious Burgundy collector. So we've asked Steen Öhman, the man behind the website, for his take on ...
ON November 20, 2017

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