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Colombard from Calvet

Published:  18 January, 2007

Calvet, best known in the UK for its Bordeaux wines, has released a Colombard from the Ctes de Gascogne under its Limited Release label.

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Housing the French

Published:  18 January, 2007

Housing the French
Winery Exchange has teamed up with the Co-op in an effort to bring French wines back into the loop with The Frenchhouse range from the Languedoc.
The new wines are focused on the young at heart', and the packaging is bold and contemporary. Paul Bastard, wine-development manager for the Co-op, comments: The Frenchhouse concept is an imaginative one, and the wine is sourced from a family operation of scrupulous process, blended to our specifications and overseen by flying winemakers who know what is needed to succeed in the UK market.' From January 2006, two wines from the range will be available: The Frenchhouse Grenache/Mourvdre and Chardonnay. Both will retail for 4.49 in more than 2,000 Co-op stores across the country.

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New packaging for Fetzer's Pacific Bay

Published:  18 January, 2007

Fetzer Vineyards has repackaged its Pacific Bay wines. Created by Barlow Doherty, the new design follows the new Fetzer family look, which was launched earlier in the year'. In addition to new labels, the range has moved to Nomacork synthetic cork.
Produced exclusively for the European market, the range currently consists of a Chardonnay/Pinot Grigio; White Zinfandel; Merlot; and Cabernet Sauvignon, all priced at 4.99. Main stockists include Sainsbury's, Co-op, Morrisons and Asda.

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Churchill's on table

Published:  18 January, 2007

Churchill's Port has launched a new table wine - Churchill Estates - from the 2003 vintage.
Oenologist Joo Brito e Cunha says the company started experimenting with making a table wine from the grapes of its main quality quinta (Quinta da Gricha) in 2002, with the main objective to find a house style. We achieved a result, and with 2003 we are starting to introduce our wines worldwide.'
The wine is produced from Touriga Nacional and Tinta Roriz, with eight months ageing in a mix of new and old French oak, and the alcohol sits at 13.5% ABV. It is thought that the retail price will be e12-14, although a UK price is yet to be decided.

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Festive Fladgate

Published:  18 January, 2007

The Fladgate Partnership is releasing special wooden gift cases and chic black cartons' in time for Christmas.
As well as boxes and cartons for the majority of its brands, the Port producer - whose brands include Taylor's, Croft, Fonseca and Delaforce - has also launched a special A Century of Port' case, featuring bottles of Taylor's 10, 20, 30 and 40 Year Old Tawny.

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A history of violets

Published:  18 January, 2007

French liqueur maker Lejay-Lagoute is launching two new products on to the UK market. First up is a violet-scented liqueur, Parfait Amour. According to its UK importer Malcolm Cowen, the product is designed to be drunk with Champagne or sparkling wine. The product is made in Dijon and is aimed at style bars and the top-end on-trade. The second launch is of a super' crme de cassis. Made from Noir de Bourgogne blackcurrants, it has an ABV of 20%.

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Jadot puts it in a box

Published:  18 January, 2007

Burgundy giant Maison Louis Jadot has launched a range of Christmas gift packs to be retailed by John Lewis.
The four-strong range features two single bottles in wooden cases - a Chablis (18) and Chteau de Julinas (16) - and two double packs. One double pack features half-bottles of varietal wines - a Bourgogne Chardonnay and Bourgogne Pinot Noir (16) - while the second features 75cl bottles of Pouilly-Fuiss and Marsannay Rouge (30).

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Boisset to launch Tetra Pak wines

Published:  18 January, 2007

Burgundy-based negociant and producer Boisset is planning to launch Tetra Pak wines to the UK.

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Branson launches Virgin wine range

Published:  18 January, 2007

Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group has teamed up with Brown-Forman Wines to launch Virgin Vines, a range of two wines aimed to appeal to young adult consumers'.

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Out of Africa

Published:  18 January, 2007

Whitley Neill is a new London Dry Gin created by Johnny Neill, the fourth generation of the Greenall Whitley distilling family.
The key botanical used is the fruit of the African Baobab tree, which also features on the packaging. The Cape Gooseberry is another of the nine botanicals in Whitley Neill, and the company describes the taste as smooth and bold, combining aromatic citrus zest with a warm, cocoa-like finish'.
Neill says: I wanted to create a gin that stands out from the crowd and reflects my passion for premium spirits and Africa. Whitley Neill is a gin with a bold, vibrant personality for those who appreciate fine spirits with authenticity and provenance.'
Whitley Neill costs 20 and will be available in Harrods, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols, as well as London style bars.

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Branching out

Published:  18 January, 2007

Compass Box Whiskies has unveiled its latest product, The Spice Tree.
A vatted malt, bottled at 46% ABV, The Spice Tree has a secondary maturation in French Sessile oak - oak
that company founder John Glaser describes as the highest-quality casks in the world'. He adds: The trees for the casks are 195 years old, and this slow growth allows for more of the "good" chemical compounds that are introduced with the whisky. It also imparts a rich, deep spice character.'
The Spice Tree, which is a blend of four Highland malts, retails at 26.99 and will be available at Harrods, Selfridges, Waitrose and many independent retailers in the UK.

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Vodka on Ice

Published:  18 January, 2007

The first-ever distillery on Iceland has launched its debut product: Reyka Vodka.
The distillery is owned by William Grant & Sons and features a Carter-Head still, which are normally reserved for gin production. Reyka also uses a two-stage lava-rock filtration system, believed to be the first of its kind.
Distillery manager Kristmar Olafsson said: We are very excited to produce such a fantastic-tasting vodka. There are very few cleaner or less-polluted places in the world than Iceland, and you can really taste that in Reyka vodka.'
A 70cl bottle of Reyka is expected to retail at 15.99, and it will be also available in style bars across the country.

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Grenache ros from PLW

Published:  18 January, 2007

Peter Lehmann Wines is launching its Grenache ros into the UK for the first time.

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R' joins the Club

Published:  18 January, 2007

Champagne Ruinart has decided to release its non-vintage Brut, R' de Ruinart, in the same bottle it developed for its two other non-vintage styles: Ruinart Blanc de Blancs and Ruinart Ros.
Ruinart's president, Bernard Peillon, said: We are delighted to have a consistency in the shape of all our non-vintages, and Ruinart's signature bottle [inspired by the original bottle shape used at the foundation of the house in 1729] will make our Champagnes instantly recognisable.'
A blend of 40% Chardonnay and 60% Pinot Noir, R' de Ruinart retails at 27.99 a bottle.

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Vintage Glenfiddich

Published:  18 January, 2007

Glenfiddich has released its new vintage malt whisky, 1972 Glenfiddich.

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Cloudy Bay 2005

Published:  18 January, 2007

The 2005 vintage of Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc is released this month for 13.99 (at numerous stockists including Waitrose and Majestic).
Kevin Judd, chief winemaker at the LVMH-owned estate, said that the quality of this year's vintage is very high. Some years we cull more batches than the accountants would like us to,' he said, but this year's quality was high across the board. We had a really interesting array of flavours to work with, and the final blend comprises all the classic aromas of tropical fruit, citrus and fresh herbs.'

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Citrus-friendly cream

Published:  18 January, 2007

Walders creamy coffee liqueur is a blend of Scotch whisky and real coffee, and a 100% non-dairy base.

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Aldi set for summer

Published:  18 January, 2007

Aldi has added to its summer range of wines with 2004 Lucas Malbec Bonarda from Argentina, a blend of 60% Malbec and 40% Bonarda.

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Swinging Sixty

Published:  18 January, 2007

The latest addition to the Blackwood Distillers portfolio is Blackwood's 60 Vintage Dry Gin.

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Broken Earth unveiled

Published:  18 January, 2007

Australia wine producer Tandou Wines unveiled its new range at the LIWSF.

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