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The Independent

Published:  23 July, 2008

Anthony Rose muses over Madonna's new wine range, launched despite the material girl's usual advocacy for 'bottled Kaballah water': 'Not all so-called celebrity wines are simply monuments to their egos,' says Rose. 'Sir Cliff is serious about his Vida Nova as are England cricketing legends Ian Botham and Bob Willis with their BMW Chardonnay and Shiraz.'

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The Daily Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

It's been 150 years since the 1855 classification of Bordeaux, and JONATHAN RAY is only too happy to raise a glass in celebration. Dewey Markham, author of 1855: A History of the Bordeaux Classification, tells Ray: 'The list serves as a fascinating snapshot of Bordeaux in that year, and when it comes to setting Bordeaux apart from other wine regions, it is a unique tool.' While David Roberts MW adds: 'Despite such occasional quirks, which I equate with Wigan Athletic's current form in the football Premiership, I'd say that the list is still relevant and accurate.' But Ray doesn't need to be convinced, saying: 'The mere fact that it is 150 years old this year is good enough for me.' Readers are given a chance to order a 220 case of five cru class wines and one cru bourgeois, including 2001 Chteau Mouton-Rothschild.

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The Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

JANE MacQUITTY also went along to the Australia Day tasting, and, in her view, what Australia needs is far more 'superior 6-10 swiggers'. They've tried this, she says, with 'a quest for regionality', but this 'has not gone far enough to woo British drinkers'. Although she agrees with Atkin and finds a number of winners on the higher-priced 'Iconic Australia' table. Two examples are 2003 Cullen Chardonnay, Margaret River (24.95; Liberty Wines) and 2002 Tamar Ridge Batman Selection Pinot Noir (19.50; Vinus Vita).

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The Daily Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

Jonathan Ray completes

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The Sunday Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

Joanna Simon gives praise to those high-street shops that give space to Austrian wines - stand up Oddbins, Majestic and Marks & Spencer. 'It hasn't been an easy sell, and it is hard to pinpoint exactly why: I can't believe that the notoriously misnamed "antifreeze" wine scandal of 20 years ago is still

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The Independent

Published:  23 July, 2008

ANTHONY ROSE just can't quite get his head round Australia's Clare Valley. 'How is it that an evidently warm wine region has developed a reputation for Australia's most powerful, aromatic yet delicate Riesling?' Either way, the reputation's justified, concludes Rose, and his favourites include 'brilliant newcomer' Kilikanoon's 2005 Morts Block Riesling (11.99+; D Byrne, Clitheroe, Noel Young Wines) and 'top of the range' 2004 The Florita, from Jim Barry (14.99+; Handford).

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The Observer

Published:  23 July, 2008

Fresh from judging at the third annual Wines of Chile Awards Tim Atkin MW praises the long, thin country's wines, expressing regret over his infamous Volvo remark: '"What sort of car are we now?" people kept asking me.'

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The Daily Mail

Published:  23 July, 2008

MATTHEW JUKES has 'travelled far and wide to track down some of the unlikeliest wines on the shelves', such as 2004 Nepenthe Tryst, Cabernet/Zinfandel/Tempranillo, Adelaide Hills (6.99; Waitrose) and 2005 Santa Julia Viognier, Mendoza (4.99; Sainsbury's).

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The Guardian

Published:  23 July, 2008

Victoria Moore spent January without the singleton's favourite dinner companion, the ready meal, and instead committed herself to preparing 'a proper meal' - 'not as easy as it sounds when you live on your own and cannot be bothered cooking'. As part of her reformation, she recommends two 'inexpensive and versatile' wines from Northern Italy: the 'smoothly textured but rife with flavour' 2003 Da Luca Alto Barbera d'Asti from Piedmont (6.99, Somerfield) and the 2003 Valpolicella Ripasso Classico (5.99, Marks & Spencer).

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The Sunday Express

Published:  23 July, 2008

As a 'seasoned skier', JAMIE GOODE reports on some good matches for 'that typical mountain fare'. These include 2005 McPherson Family Vineyard Alexandra's Reserve Verdelho, Murray Darling (6.25; Laithwaites) and 2004 Heartland Dolcetto/Lagrein, Langhorne Creek, Australia (8.99; Oddbins).

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The Sunday Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

JOANNA SIMON takes on the role of ice queen this week as she takes a look at some of the 'extraordinary wine' that is Eiswein from Germany and Austria or Icewine from Canada. For a good bargain, she suggests 1997 Darting Estate Eiswein Scheurebe (12 for 37.5cl; Marks & Spencer).

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The Daily Mail

Published:  23 July, 2008

MATTHEW JUKES surveys the January sales and comes up with a few quality bargains.

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The Independent On Sunday

Published:  23 July, 2008

The subject is detox, and Richard Ehrlich is a non-believer: 'There's no such thing as detox.' However, he does concede that 'there is such a thing as the detox industry', and he's keen to add some advice of his own. Option number one involves 'getting more flavour into the glass of whatever virtuous drink you

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The Observer

Published:  23 July, 2008

'Which country is the new Australia?' asks TIM ATKIN MW. Perhaps Australia itself, he suggests: 'It's easy to forget that Australia can still surprise.' But Atkin is putting his money on South Africa, claiming it holds the edge over Australia in 'Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc and Pinotage (by default)'. Atkin even dares to share his view that Aussie favourite

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The Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

After a week involved in the annual Burgundy en primeur tasting jamboree, Jane MacQuitty decides that the 2004s deliver 'some surprisingly elegant, racy, pear and lime zest-spiked fruit'. She warns, however, not to be 'taken in by wine merchants' euphoria: [it] is a good not great vintage'. Similarly, 'don't go looking for keepers - you won't find them'. 2004 Burgundy is 'classic' and 'terroir-driven', unlike 'the opulent 2003s'. Her 'best of' list comes out next week. Picks for this week include the 2003 Graffigna Shiraz Reserve, Argentina (down 1 to 3.99, Co-op), 2001 Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc, California (down 2 to 4.99, Waitrose), 2002 Mdoc, Bordeaux, Yvon Mau (down 2 to 4.99, Tesco) and 1998 Chanoine Champagne, Blanc de Blancs, Brut (down 15 to 14.99, Tesco).

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The Guardian

Published:  23 July, 2008

Champagne might be a drink for all occasions, but opening

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The Daily Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

'English wine is no longer the joke it once was,' says Owen Elias, winemaker at Chapel Down in Kent, talking to JONATHAN RAY. Ray is keeping Elias company on a visit to Jean-Philippe Archambaud, winemaker at Simonnet-Febvre in Chablis, but ends up feeling a little out of his depth once the chatter turns to rainfall, sunlight hours, sugar levels and acidity. Although he's back in the frame when the tasting of 2003 and 2004 Chablis begins: 'The wines differ across the quality levels, but their hallmark remains a soft, gentle butteriness with elusive hints of honey and an appealing freshness.' A return match is on the cards for next week, with France putting England to the test. Wines of the week include 2004 Vergelegen Chardonnay, South Africa (7.99 as part of a case; Majestic).

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The Observer

Published:  23 July, 2008

'The death of the high street has been greatly exaggerated,' claims TIM ATKIN MW. It looks as though there are going to

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The Daily Mail

Published:  23 July, 2008

'This week's WOW' from MATTHEW JUKES is 2005 Stormhoek Sauvignon Blanc, Western Cape (5.99; Asda, Oddbins, Sainsbury's) - 'a wickedly refreshing wine'.

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The Sunday Telegraph

Published:  23 July, 2008

If you're looking for a wine to go with bruschetta of red pepper and goat's cheese, GILES KIME says you can't go far wrong with 2005 Vergelegen Sauvignon Blanc (7.99; Majestic).

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