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Burns Night - A Tale of Whisky & Freedom
Last night was Burns night. An evening of poetry and drinking, celebrating the life and works of Scottish poet Robert Burns. We look back at the life and work of Scotland’s most famous poet and his love of whisky. To mark the occasion, we have also curated a Whisky Sale that started this Saturday made up of some of our favourite bottles of Scotch. ...
BY George Koutsakis,
ON January 21, 2020
The Historic Rise of Nebbiolo - Italy's "King of Wines"
The history of Piedmont as a fine wine region and the establishment of Nebbiolo as a single varietal wine predates the unification of Italy. Yet the region’s rise to international fame as Italy’s finest wine was intrinsically linked to the political role that the Piedmont Kingdom played in the unification of Italy. We look back at the rise of Barolo as the “King of ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON January 21, 2020
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
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
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
24 Hours in... Burgundy
With the Burgundy 2018 En Primeur sales in full swing we thought it topical to offer our top tips for visiting the region. With two native Burgundians in our buying team, who better than them to outline the local delicacies not to miss, the top wine lists and the best restaurants in the region. Top Special Occasion Restaurant – Lameloise (3* ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON December 12, 2019
The Rhone Valley has been enjoying a consecutive set of remarkable vintages since 2015. According to Michel Chapoutier, 2018 has continued in the same vein and he describes it as “a terrific year”. Indeed, the Rhone Valley followed a similar path to the rest of France in 2018. A very wet start to the year helped provide plenty of water ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON December 6, 2019
F+R: As a wine lover and epicurean how would you best spend 24 hours in Montpellier and surrounding area? Andrew Jefford: This slightly depends if you are here in summer or winter.  If you’re here in the summer when it’s very hot, you might want to be near the sea and go swimming: sandy, super-safe and very child-friendly hereabouts.  There ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON December 4, 2019
24 Hours in... Brunello di Montalcino
Gianlorenzo Neri from top Brunello producer Casanova di Neri reveals his hidden gems in and around the region of Montalcino. Famed for its pinci pasta, wild boar and of course world class wines this is a thriving region for the travelling epicurean. Gianlorenzo provides us with his top restaurant tips, favourite wine lists and the best times in the year ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON November 22, 2019
Napa Valley 2016 & 2017 Vintage Insights
The 2016 Vintage 2016 was undoubtedly a sensational vintage in Napa. Whilst it was the 5th warm vintage in a row, the season had a very wet start, so it was the first vintage in Napa since 2011 not classified as a drought vintage. For many, this brought more finesse to the tannins, more minerality and more balance to the ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON November 6, 2019
The Wine Advocate's William Kelley shares his Burgundy 2018 Early Insight
F+R: After tasting in Burgundy and Champagne consistently over the last couple of years, what do you feel has been the most important developments in each of the regions in that time? William Kelley: I think that Burgundians are getting used to handling warm fruit. If you're not used to making wine from warm grapes, it's easy for things to go ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON November 1, 2019
Burgundy 2018 - What The Critics Are Saying
William Kelley, Wine Advocate F+R: After tasting in Burgundy and Champagne consistently over the last couple of years, what do you feel has been the most important developments in each of the regions in that time? William Kelley: I think that Burgundians are getting used to handling warm fruit. If you're not used to making wine from warm grapes, it's easy ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON October 30, 2019
Andrew Jefford - Burgundy 2018
Thanks to Andrew Jefford for sharing his Vintage overview first published on the Wine Scholar Guild website. Andrew (similarly to many wine makers we have spoken to) believes the Cote de Beaune white wines are outstanding in 2018 (4.5 vintage) and almost as good as the universally praised red wines throughout the Cote d'Or (5 vintage). Chablis After a ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON October 25, 2019
Jasper Morris MW (Inside Burgundy) provides an early insight to the Burgundy 2018 Vintage
We tend to focus on the weather conditions in the lead-up to the harvest and while the grapes are being picked, but a key factor in defining how the 2018 crop turned out was the winter before, which was grim and excessively rainy. This proved to be a blessing however during the drought months of high summer which followed. The ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON October 18, 2019
Brunello di Montalcino 2015 - On a par with 2010, arguably better!
Critics and winemakers alike have put the 2015 vintage on a par with the great 2010, sharing similar levels of opulence and voluptuousness on the palate. The 2015 vintage has produced some incredibly juicy yet vibrant wines. Wines with amazing voluptuousness backed with great acidity, fatness and freshness. This style, like 2010 is a real crowd-pleaser, but with trends ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON October 10, 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
Top Burgundy Negociants on the 2018 Vintage
ALAIN SERVEAU (HEAD WINEMAKER AT ALBERT BICHOT) After a number of challenging conditions in previous vintages, Alain was happy to report that the “2018 vintage offered close to perfect conditions.  With such conditions, the challenge was to keep the “charge” in the wines and to avoid reaching high yields in order to maintain concentrations.” This required necessary “de-budding” during springtime, ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON September 26, 2019
White Burgundy 2018 Review
"We don't need to be a great expert to know that this is an exceptional vintage, for both red and white wines.” Aubert de Villaine (Domaine Romanee-Conti) The hallmark of the 2018 vintage was brightness, with remarkable levels of sunshine from April right through to September. Budburst and canopy growth happened at normal times and the settled weather meant ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON September 17, 2019
Vintage Insight - Germany 2018
“Quick Growth, early blossom, lots of sun, a magnificent summer” This was the vintage report in a sentence from Donnhoff, one of Germany’s most respected producers. A real cold snap at the beginning of the year looked like budding might be delayed but in late March the weather completely switched bringing mid-Summer temperatures to the vineyards causing “the vegetative cycle ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON September 11, 2019
F+R Early Insight into the 2018 Burgundy Vintage
F+R were in Burgundy this week for the first tastings of the 2018 vintage and we were thrilled by what we tasted. There is plenty of excitement from the producers we visited with praise for the vintage being universal, 2018 is without doubt an exceptional vintage. Many of the producers we visited are already comparing it to previous stellar vintages ...
BY Gavin Smith,
ON July 19, 2019
24 hours in Venice
Venissa's Annalisa Florian shares her insider knowledge on wining and dining like a true Venetian, as well as must see artisan discoveries. Best wine lists: Osteria Ai Rusteghi, near the Rialto bridge, is a hidden gem. With courtyard seating and small but well curated Italian and international wine list, this is a perfect stop for fantastic artisanal charcuterie ...
ON July 12, 2019
24 Hours in Melbourne
We caught up with Karen Foster, Melbourne-based founder of The Wine Loop, on her top tips for wine lovers visiting Australia's food and drink mecca. As a wine lover and epicurean how would you best spend 24 hours in Melbourne? Being a South Melbourne girl, I’d start the day with a croissant or flan from Agathé Pâtisserie in the fantastic ...
ON June 28, 2019
24 Hours in Alsace
Alsace is a unique place. With its chocolate box houses, cobbled streets and its steep rising hills and valleys, it is a beautiful destination. There is much to enjoy aside from the wine, foremost the stunning scenery and the traditional cuisine. The region has some of the highest proportion of Michelin stars restaurants in France and has great cycling routes ...
ON June 7, 2019
2018 Bordeaux En Primeur: The Week in Review #7
A big week in Bordeaux EP started with a bang. Leoville Lascases was released to high anticipation having received sky high scores. With potential 100 points across the board, this St Julien is the highest scoring wine of the vintage. James Suckling simply declared: “OMG”, whilst Jeb Dunnuck hailed it as “a candidate for the wine of the vintage... it’s ...
ON June 7, 2019
Port 2017: The New Vintage Declaration
Yesterday we got our first in-depth look at the latest Vintage Ports from 2017. It is a rare event indeed to have two vintages (2016 and 2017) so widely declared back to back. But according to all the top Port houses, the 2017s are without question a match for 2016s, albeit with wines possessing a very different profile. Even ...
ON May 24, 2019
2018 Bordeaux En Primeur 2018: Critics' Scores Round-Up
The reviews are in. The overall top scorers for the 2018 vintage are Chateau Ausone and Petrus, both sharing an aggregate score of 99.5, with Chateau Lafleur just behind with 99.3. These aggregate scores are compiled from the top Bordeaux expert critics: James Suckling, Lisa Perrotti-Brown (Wine Advocate), Jeb Dunnuck, Jane Anson (Decanter) and Antonio Galloni (Vinous). Out of the ...
ON May 17, 2019
2018 Bordeaux En Primeur: The Week in Review #4
Another busy week in Bordeaux with some major releases stirring huge interest from around the world. Chateau Pavie Macquin was one of the top picks in Saint-Emilion in terms of quality and price and the wine unsurprisingly sold out very quickly. Le Dome was another Saint-Emilion hit in 2018 and again its fair pricing combined with huge critic approval saw ...
ON May 10, 2019
2018 Bordeaux En Primeur: The Week in Review #3
Another busy week of En Primeur with a steady flow of releases from across the appellations. The highlight release of the week had to be Chateau Clinet who produced an outstanding wine in 2018, receiving some of the highest scores ever at the property, yet releasing the wine at a significantly lower price than both its 2015 and 2016 wines. ...
ON May 3, 2019
A Sign of Things to Come? Potential 100 Point Wines from Bordeaux 2018
Reviewing the Bordeaux Barrel Tasting Reports from the Wine Spectator’s James Molesworth dating back to 2010, we can confidently say that Bordeaux 2018 has seen the highest number of potential 100 point scores in the last decade, with a total of five wines awarded 97-100 points. With the benefit of one consistent taster throughout the decade - not to mention a ...
ON April 4, 2019
How to Spend 24 Hours in Santa Barbara
The Santa Barbara Hills in Southern California (situated just north of LA, beyond Malibu) are currently producing some of the most exciting wines in the whole of California. Whilst less established than Napa Valley or Sonoma further North, this wilder territory has attracted a young generation of winemakers who are not scared to experiment. Just a few decades since the ...
ON March 29, 2019
Bordeaux 2018 - F+R visits Bordeaux for an early vintage insight
The Right Bank in 2018 Our first stop was Pomerol, with a visit to Clos du Clocher to taste a number of wines from Jean Baptiste Bourotte. Clos du Clocher is situated in some of the finest Pomerol terroir in the middle of the plateau neighboring Trotanoy and La Fleur Petrus. We have been following the Chateau avidly as quality ...
ON March 22, 2019
Bordeaux 2018: Early Vintage Insight from the Producers
Excitement is building for the upcoming release of 2018 Bordeaux with the En Primeur tastings just weeks away. As soon as harvest began we started hearing from relieved vignerons who, after a tough start to the growing season, saw the weather turn in July for an uninterrupted long dry summer right up to picking. As the wine went through fermentation, ...
ON March 8, 2019
Burgundy 2017 - In Review
“there are some quite brilliant whites that, many growers are beginning to opine, equal or even surpass the haloed 2014s…The 2017 reds are very good, often excellent, and from time to time, bloody awesome.” Neal Martin, Vinous “a delicious vintage for white Burgundy…there is no sense of dilution and for the most part the wines show optimum ripeness.” Jasper Morris, ...
ON January 11, 2019
Vintage Report - 2017 Red Burgundies: tension, verve and terroir transparency
Generally speaking, 2017 is a vintage that, for once, all went to plan in Burgundy. Not since 2009 have so many winemakers been so happy with both their quantity and quality. It has been a difficult few years and it is genuinely a pleasant sight to see the cellars full again after so many years of heartache. I say generally, ...
ON November 23, 2018
Leading Wine Critics Report on 2017 White Burgundy
As the reviews on Bugundy 2017 begin to be published, we have collated a brief summary of what the critics are saying. As the reviews roll in, we will continue to update this article, but with full reports on Chablis from Neal Martin (Vinous), William Kelley (Wine Advocate) and Nick Stock (James Suckling), as well as a Cote de Beaune ...
ON October 8, 2018
The Best Places to Eat in Burgundy – According to Local Winemakers
Whilst Burgundy is famed for its Chardonnay and Pinot Noir production, it is also one of the great gastronomic regions of France, with a distinct and varied array of homespun culinary delights. The region has so much to offer, and the main town of Beaune is a magnet for wine loving tourists from all around the world. Like all popular holiday destinations ...
ON September 20, 2018
La Place de Bordeaux takes on the World's Icon Wines
“La Place de Bordeaux” is the historic distribution network used to distribute the wines of Bordeaux globally and this is briefly how it works: wines are sold from the Chateau to Bordeaux Negociants (via a Courtier) before being sold on to individual wine merchants and then on to the consumer. This has been an historic trading system originating from ...
ON September 13, 2018
Rare Collectibles from the FINE+RARE HOME Hong Kong
The new F+R HOME Hong Kong will be furnished with rare collectibles curated by London-based design duo withCeremony. From Ejvind A. Johansson's exceptional Eye Chairs and Massimo Papiri's iconic Cocktail Table, to a selection of unique barware by Carl Auböck - see a small selection of the highlights below... All available to purchase - prices upon request.   Set of Ten Eye ...
ON August 10, 2018
Chablis: The Great Divide
Chablis’ historic and international reputation has been both a great asset and a hindrance with regards to the quality level of Chablis production. With such a well-recognised name and a fairly neutral style at the entry-level point, there has been huge demand for cheap Chablis in practically every retail wine sector around the world. When you add in the decimating ...
ON August 2, 2018
Dining Out in Chablis: 3 Restaurant Recommendations for Wine-Lovers
Despite the impressive amphitheatre of Grand Cru sites that surround this beautiful and peaceful village, Chablis is all-too-often missed off the itinerary on food and wine tours of Burgundy. However notwithstanding its petite size, Chablis is bursting at the seams with culinary surprises. There is a vast array of truly unmissable restaurants, all well-versed in curating menus to complement the ...
ON August 2, 2018
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
The Artist Behind The Label - 5 of the Best
In 1924, Baron Philippe de Rothschild of Chateau Mouton Rothschild commissioned graphic designer Jean Carlu to design a wine label for the bottles of that vintage, and a long-standing tradition between the worlds of art and wine was born. From one label to the next, Mouton Rothschild has brought together some of the most celebrated artists of the day - ...
ON July 25, 2018
Burgundy 2017 Early Vintage Insight
Burgundy 2017 - At A Glance: First ‘normal’ sized harvest since 2009 – the cellars are full for the first time in nearly a decade Dry, early harvest with no hail or frost damage Enthusiasm is building for the reds: Roumier compares these to the 2007 and 2014 vintages; Drouhin compares them to 2002 In the Cote d’Or, whites have ...
ON July 25, 2018
5 of the Most Collectible Corkscrews
Wine connoisseurs and design lovers alike will be captivated by our edit of the most beautiful bottle openers… Gucci Exotic Wood & Gold-Plated Brass Corkscrew, £663, 1stdibs An ingeniously designed and highly sought-after bottle opener executed in exotic wood and gold-plated brass by Gucci in the 1960s. The Italian fashion house’s iconic G logo unscrews and slides precisely over one ...
ON July 20, 2018
Dining Out in Bordeaux - F+R Restaurant Recommendations
Bordeaux being the bread and butter of our business we find ourselves eating our way round the city on a regular basis. The beauty of having so many friends in the region and like us, all driven by a passion for food and drink, recommendations are easy to come by. Below are a couple of highlights from recent visits.  Tentazioni ...
ON May 11, 2018
F+R Retreats: A Culinary Escape to Barolo
Travelling up and down the rolling hills of Barolo, it is impossible to ignore the abundance of culinary delights growing all around you. From vineyards and hazelnut trees, to little patches of woodland famed for their truffles... As we travel through the region, our guide Giacomo points out a spot good for white truffles, another more renowned for the black variety. And he should ...
ON April 13, 2018
Earlier this month FINE+RARE sponsored TedXCoventGardenWomen. Read on to find out more… TedXCoventGardenWomen is an independent TED event featuring a day of talks by people “devoted to ideas worth spreading”. The event sought to “celebrate the transformative power of women, girls and anyone who shines a light on different realities.” Women in Wine There is no hiding from the fact ...
ON November 23, 2017
Burgundy 2016 En Primeur: Early Opinions
According to Burgundy expert Steen Öhman “the 2016 vintage is a blank new page waiting to be explored, consumed and enjoyed.” And as the 2016 Burgundy En Primeur campaign fast approaches, it’s time to put pen to that blank page... A Classic Vintage? Despite devastating frosts and hail experienced by many parts of the Burgundy region in 2016, all is ...
ON September 8, 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
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

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