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New wines just arrived from four wine regions and four states in Australia, some old favourites are back in town…..

Mr Whirly started his wine business off by travelling through the vineyards of Australia in 2000, from Margaret river in Western Australia ( and down to the Great Southern near the south west corner of this vast country when 3 Drops is from ) to the Hunter Valley in the south east corner of New South Wales.

It’s therefore a proud moment to say that once again, I go back to the roots of the business and have, after 3 years of barren discoveries due to so many issues with the world, bought over, despite the incredible difficulties with logistics and shipping, some beautifully crafted wines from some old favourite vineyards.

Passing Clouds in Bendigo, Victoria

These wines have always been one of my favourites from Victoria. They will be online soon, there is no rush since the wines are 2020 vintage and will need lots of time cellaring.

Lillypilly, Leeton, New South Wales

Noble Blend 2017: £20.50

2020 Halliday Wine Companion

A blend of Sauvignon blanc and Muscat. Full orange-gold. Lifted ripe apricot, vanilla cream. Candied peel and ginger flavours. Has freshness and line, and just enough of everything except perhaps bottle age. Give it a bit more time to fill out and complex further, but is still very good refined drinking now. 375ml. 12% alc vol


Fiumara 7: £26.85

Halliday Wine Companion

Jane Faulkner Published 01 August 2020
Tawny with a red sheen; very fresh and heady with ginger bread and panettone, hazelnut toffee, soused raisins and baking spices. A brandy flavour to the spirit, the palate is smooth, warming and this is a delight to drink. 375ml.

3 drops in Mount Barker, Great Southern, Western Australia ( New wine! Cabernet Franc 2018 as well as their Shiraz 2018)

Shiraz 2018: £25.75

This elegant Shiraz is deep red coloured. Its luxurious bouquet gives off fruit, spice and pepper fragrances. The palate is full of black cherry, plum and chocolate flavours, with cedary French oak undertones evident in the background. This wine can either be consumed upon release, or be cellared for about 10 years from vintage.

Cabernet Franc 2018 ( new wine to the UK): £22.50

Purple / red with vibrant hues. Rich youthful aromas of blackcurrant. Deep, concentrated wine, which translates to a medium-bodied, intense, beautifully -balanced and framed palate, with ample soft tannins and real harmony of components. A bold, bright, delicious red wine. Drink over the next 7-9 years.

Rob Diletti- winemaker

Reviews & Awards

Brick Kiln, McLaren Vale, South Australia.

Brick Kiln, McLaren Vale

Shiraz 2017: £27.50

“Matured in predominately American oak hogsheads (35% new) for 20 months. Impenetrable inky black core with a dark red black tinged hue. Ripe blackberry and liquorice aromas jump out of the glass followed by toasty vanillin oak, black cherry, earthy fennel and pepper. Full bodied, rich and intense, opulent blackberry, liquorice and black cherry fruits engulf the palate underscored by toasty vanillin oak, earth, spicy fennel and pepper characters. Velvet smooth tannins have good underlying structure. Powerful with a lavish textural feel it concludes long and succulent.” 

Drink over the next 5-15 years.

If you are interested in anything immediately before they go online please write to Mr Whirly at simon@whirlywine.co.uk

Thanking you for your continued support…..

Mr Whirly

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New Wines from Australia for Christmas….

It’s a great time of year to start to source and look for something really exciting for the festive season, whether it’s for your own personal consumption or as an individual and beautiful gift.

Look not further than here for such inspirations! I have already explained in the previous post about the lovely wines that Mr Whirly has imported from Alcardet in Spain: affordable, and yet well made wines that are “Sustainable” and look after the world and planet. Wines that you can buy direct from Mr Whirly, just please send me an email.

Just arrived this week are some new wines from Australia: its taken a while to get back to my old place, where I started to import wines from, but we have managed to focus on some sensational wines from some small vineyards that I have been working with for close to twenty years now. These wines are from the following vineyards & will be on the Whirly wine website next week for you to buy! If you would like to pre-order please do so at Simon@whirlywine.co.uk

Three Drops, Mount Barker, Western Australia: Cabernet Franc 2018 and Shiraz 2018

Brick Kiln, McLaren Vale, South Australia: Brick Kiln Shiraz 2018

Passing Clouds, Bendigo, Victoria: Graeme’s blend 2018 ( Cabernet Sauvignon-Shiraz blend, a classic old school wine)

Lillypilly, Leeton, New South Wales; Lillypilly Noble Blend 2018 and Fiumara 7

Below is a press release from Three drops received from the owner, Joanne Bradbury. I am importing a new wine from them this December, their delicious Cabernet Franc

Media Release

3DROPS WINS GLOBAL FINE WINE CHALLENGE

3drops from Mt Barker has won one of the world’s most prestigious wine awards for its 2018 Cabernet Franc.

The wine was named Best Red in Show at the invitation only Global Fine Wine Challenge with results announced today.

It also won top trophy honours in the Class 15 – Cabernet Franc in the competition which features the best New World wines.

The competition is restricted to the top 120 wines from each country, including Canada, New Zealand, North America and South Africa.

Global Fine Wine Challenge Director, Ross Anderson said the award to 3drops “is a phenomenal result when you look at the wines they were up against, it is just staggering”.

Mr Anderson said the awards were akin to the Olympics of the global wine industry with countries competing against each other.

The awards, previously known as the Six Nations Wine Challenge (est: 2003) didn’t run last year because of COVID-19 restrictions, but in 2019 was dominated heavily by entries from New Zealand.

The 2019 Wine of Show went to Canada’s 2013 Cuvee Catharine Cart Blanche Blanc de Blanc from Henry Pelham Family Estate.

The 2019 Wine of Show went to Canada’s 2013 Henry of Pelham Family Estate Cuvee Catharine Cart Blanche Blanc de Blanc. The 2019 Red Wine of Show went to America’s Hartford Family Winery Dina’s Vineyard Old Vine Zinfandel 2016. New Zealand’s Church Road Grand Reserve Chardonnay 2018 took out the 2019 White Wine of Show.

The last time an Australian wine won Wine of Show was in 2017 when Xanadu Reserve Chardonnay 2015 took out the Chardonnay trophy, White Wine of Show and Wine of Show awards. 

There are no recorded Australian Red Wine’s having ever secured the Red Wine of Show trophy 

Owner of 3drops, Joanne Bradbury, said the award was a credit to the efforts of winemaker Rob Diletti who had been making 3drops wines since 2003 and to viticulturist Ray Williams who planted the original vines and still manages the Wragg Road and Patterson’s vineyards.

Ms Bradbury said the Cabernet Franc trophy and the Best Red of Show were 3drops most significant awards to date.

“We are excited and honoured that a Cabernet Franc grown on our family farm has been selected as the best red wine in the Global Fine Wine Challenge.”

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Wines for the festive season from “Mr Whirly”: sustainable “Organic” and “Vegan” wines as well as some more exotic offerings…

Mr Whirly says:

” It’s that time of the year again and it’s a lovely time to look forward to this oh so special time of the year that we hold so dear to our hearts here in this wonderful land of ours. A time where the family comes together and for the first time in two years we are able to enjoy Christmas once again in the proper way. I think therefore its a lovely time to eat and drink well but let’s drink with care and attention to the environment and also to ourselves. Drink in moderation. Drink less and drink better.

With this in mind I shall be putting together a few delights for you to enjoy. I will start with a mixed case of “Organic” and “Vegan” wines for all the family at a sensible price point, wines that have been made in a sustainable way for the soil and earth. There will be an affordable mixed dozen and half dozen available online from the 1st December and I shall send out a link in a post to both cases. As I always do at this time of the year I shall also put together a more salubrious offering for your to enjoy, as a half dozen that you can order as you wish, double up if you like and order 12.

Please do have a look at the wines online though. There are some fabulous vintages of old Bordeaux that I have added recently that would make some sensational gifts for Christmas, as well as Port from Porto: Lillypilly Fiumara 7 and Fortified 1998 Shiraz from Leeton Australia, that are the perfect match with Plum pudding and Stilton cheese; Magnums of Valpollichella that need to be opened 48 hours before Christmas day, to be the perfect match with Roast beef; Graziano Tocai Fruilano 2012 from Mendocino, California, perfect with a rich sticky toffee pudding and custard on the day or something similar: Lillypilly Noble blend 2012, perfect with a Steamed ginger pudding or fresh fruit salad. As well as these really individual offerings we offer Gin and Single malt Whisky by the bottle from small and local distillers as well as Olive oil from Velenosi in Marche, one of my favourite vineyards I work with. In short there are a host of lovely gifts for your family and friends that are being added all the time to the website on the online shop. But do look now, some of the wines are only available in very limited stocks and in order to guarantee delivery before Christmas, please order by December 20th.

Thanking you, happy hunting and any questions about the pairing of any wines with any food styles, so you can get the most out of each wine, please do email me direct and I will personally email you back just as soon as I can.”

Mr Whirly

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Bodegas Alcardet; ” Organic” and “Vegan” wines, ” Gea”range, Toledo, Spain. New wines have arrived into the UK, October 2021!!

As Mr Whirly indicated in the last post Whirly wines is focusing his wholesale business on Farm shops now, away from the trials and tribulations of the poor restauranteurs I have had the joy of working with for 20 years now. Sadly alot of my restaurant clients are no longer in business, due to Covid, so in order to survive, Mr Whirly and Whirly wines had to switch markets in the last year. This has been, as one can imagine, really hard work, but this core range of wines for farm shops, was inspired by a request by Joanna Hodgson at Piercebridge farm shop in County Durham, my first farm shop client & thanks to Joanna they have inspired my business to create this market.

The wines have just arrived from Toledo in Spain. They consist of the following wines, three whites and three reds;

Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Verdelho

Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Tempranillo

The wines are fabulous for every day drinking: the whites are crisp and clean and with positive acidity. The Reds are soft in tannins and easy to drink, fruit led but restrained.

The wines are £10.50 a bottle and can be bought privately by emailing me direct. Minimum order is 12 bottles. Please email me simon@whirlywine.co.uk or call me on 07821 968111

Thanking you

Mr Whirly

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‘Organic”, “Vegan” and ” Bio-Dynamic” wines are the focus for Whirly wines in 2021…

“Lets walk on with hope in our hearts for a brighter light ahead in 2021.” The focus for this year is undoubtedly going to be the sourcing of some quality “ Organic” and ” Vegan” wines at really competitive prices for wholesale and private clients. It’s what people are now looking for, wines that are “sustainably” made and wines that have that care and attention too. So trust in “Mr Whirly” and allow me to guide you through a list of wines that I already have that are “Organic” as well as some ideas for the future. Indeed very shortly I shall be posting on the e-commerce page a range of half a dozen ” Organic” wines for your to enjoy this March, discounted at 10% for you lovely, regular clients, who have supported me through thick and thin.

I have a great mixed case of wine on offer at the moment too, just in time for Easter. Click on the link below to have a peep! Click on the link below:

Mr Whirly’s ” Celebrate the end of Lockdown” with a case of Organic and Vegan Gems!

Whirly wine “Organic “offerings…..( delivered ” free to your door” in SW postcodes, whatever quantity you order)

Mr Whirly’s Organic, Bio and Vegan wines…..

Rosé

Mehofer, Rose, 2019, ( 100% Zweigelt) “ La vie en Rose”, Mehofer, Wagram, Austria; ” Strawberry’s and Cream in a glass! A pure delight for this summer of 2020. This is a brand new line of wine for Mehofer so its really exciting to show you an Austrian Organic rose!”: £13.95

White

Gruner Veltliner, Klassik, 2019, Mehofer, Wagram, Austria: £13.50

Mehofer have been Organic for over 20 years. Gruner is the main white grape of Austria. Its soft, low in alcohol and is the perfect lazy Sunday afternoon wine whilst you prepare your roast. Apples and pears, slick and shiny with some fresh acidity.

Roter Veltliner, Klassik, 2019, Mehofer, Wagram, Austria: £13.95

” Roter ” means Red. ( Gruner is green) yet this is a white wine? Why? It’s picked before they turn red, hence there are no red grape skins to make the red wine. Roter is a little fuller than the Gruner. Still apples and pears but slightly riper and fuller yet it’s another slick offering from this talented young winemaker, Stephan Mehofer.

Riesling, Klassik, 2019, Mehofer, Wagram, Austria; £14.50

Dry Riesling. Not Sweet like a great deal of the wines from Germany next door. Another quality offering from Mehofer, pure, soft and elegant with some notes of fresh pear and quince and a little oiliness on the palate and a hint of petrol on the nose but by no means is it prevalent. Another top wine, another top vintage. Drink now or cellar for up to 5-7 years since it will develop in the bottle.

Red

” Red for Tapas”, La Mancha, Spain: £9.75

New wine just arrived October 2020 for the Autumn. It’s all about Organic and Vegan and value for money when it comes to wine and this wine ticks all the boxes. Soft and gentle, this wine combines Syrah and Tempranillo, its very easy to drink and is rich with Autumn fruits of plum, blackberry and cherry on the palate. A winner of a wine at that crucial £10.00 price point mark. Give it a Whirl, you won’t be disappointed.

Rosso Piceno, 2017, “ Organic and Bio- Dynamic” Sangiovese & Montepulciano, Velenosi, Marche, Italy: £11.50

Montepulciano and Sangiovese, again the former taking the lead in the %, 70-30. Very elegant and fruit driven wine, really exciting offering with some bright acidity blended in with fruits like cherry, plum and violets. It can be drunk now or in the next 2-3 years.

“Chateau Domaine de Viaud”, “Cuvée Prestige”, Cote de Bourg, 2015, Bordeaux: £22.50 ( Vegan & Organic)

” Certified Organic , Vegan & Biodynamic ” Bordeaux is hard to find. Finding subtle and exciting Bordeaux with these add on’s even more tricky. The Bordelais are reluctant to change their philosophy over centuries, which is understandable and many grow their grapes in a ” Sustainable” way too.Philippe Betschart is a man I have known since 2009 when I first visited the vineyard and he was converting to this ” Organic” way. I subsequently bought the 2009 and 2010 vintages which were great vintages and very successful here in the UK. We now continue this relationship with the wonderful 2015 vintage, which is soft and so alluring. This wine is gentle at 13.5% alc vol, with some Autumnal berry fruit, tabacco and forest floor notes on the nose and palate. Its a beautifully balanced wine that I would recommend anyone who loves Bordeaux, but is often disappointed, to taste.”

Zweigelt- Cabernet, 2015, Klassik, Mehofer, Wagram, Austria: £15.95

“I love this wine! It’s perfect now as a match with duck and soft game. Its full of smokey summer fruits like strawberry and raspberry, but it’s not too fruity don’t worry. The Cabernet gives this wine depth and fullness.”

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Wine of the Month; January 2021

ORGANIC, “Chateau Les Graves de Viaud”, Côtes de Bourg, 2015, ” Cuvée Prestige”, “Bio Dynamic” and “Vegan” Bordeaux

New wine! Arrived December 2019.

Mr Whirly says:

” Certified Organic , Vegan & Biodynamic ” Bordeaux is hard to find. Finding subtle and exciting Bordeaux with these add on’s even more tricky. The Bordelais are reluctant to change their philosophy over centuries, which is understandable and many grow their grapes in a ” Sustainable” way too.

Philippe Betschart is a man I have known since 2009 when I first visited the vineyard and he was converting to this ” Organic” way. I subsequently bought the 2009 and 2010 vintages which were great vintages and very successful here in the UK. We now continue this relationship with the wonderful 2015 vintage, which is soft and so alluring. This wine is gentle at 13.5% alc vol, with some Autumnal berry fruit, tabacco and forest floor notes on the nose and palate. Its a beautifully balanced wine that I would recommend anyone who loves Bordeaux, but is often disappointed, to taste.”

13.5 % alc vol

£22.50

TO BUY CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW

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Wine of the Month: October 2020

” Sustainability and Individuality: “Organic” and “Vegan “wines imported for the Autumn of 2020.”

It’s been a busy few months and despite the very tricky times in our lives, one still has to believe that one is doing the right thing. And standing still is not an option. After the importing of some delightful Organic wines from Mehofer, please see the blog for the write up on Jancis Robinson’s website, Whirly wines have recently imported another new ” Organic and Vegan ” wine from Spain!

Red wine for Tapas” 2019, “Organic and Vegan”

750ml

13.0% alc vol

Mr whirly says:

” Soft and gentle Tempranillo and Syrah. A delight to taste. Rich in plum, blackberry and cherry. Soft tannins. Great gentle Autumn wine for only £10.75.”

Click on the link below to buy!

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Mehofer: ” Organic, Sustainability and Individuality for over two decades.”

Recently, Jancis Robinson ran a competition on her website for wine writers articles on “Sustainable” vineyards. This is the feature on Mehofer and Stefan Mehofer, the young winemaker whom I have been working with for over 10 years now, importing their unique and beautifully created wines.

‘My name is Helena Jordan and I am 28 years old. I am from Austria, been trained as a sommelier in Vienna and have been working in the restaurant business for almost 10 years now. After some stations in Switzerland, Spain and the US I am currently working in Norway. I have been writing blogs on the side and also translated a couple of winemakers’ websites from German to English. My position at the moment could be easiest described as Consultant and Project Assistant for a seasonal company on Stokkøya called Stokkøy Strandbaren and Bygda 2.0. Sustainability has been a big part of my project work here for a small bakery, so this was a perfect match. I will be going back to restaurant work after the summer though, moving back to Vienna and working for Juan Amador as a Restaurant Manager Assistant.’ With her (unedited) entry to our writing competition, Helena takes us to a tiny family winery in Wagram, Austria. See this guide to the entries so far published.

In recent years we have seen a couple of positive changes when it comes to awareness of customers. Awareness and interest where their food or wine is coming from, if it’s good for their body, healthy and additionally environmentally friendly. Many industries are now trying to meet the need for this new market, the new aware generation of customers. And they are good customers. Happy to spend a little more money. Happy to stay faithful to a product they enjoy and believe in.

Hence, sustainability sells! Now when something sells, all the marketing managers of the world will not shut up about how important this or that trigger word is for their brand, their company. You know that thing that you want to hear. Was it organic? Yes, we do that. Sustainable? Sure! Let’s ask my friend Wikipedia here, to explain this more clearly. It says greenwashing is a form of marketing spin in which green PR and green marketing are deceptively used to persuade the public that an organization’s products, aims and policies are environmentally friendly and therefore ‘better’.

Why do I point that out? Because the true heroes of sustainability are the ones that cared about our planet and the environment long before it was hip to do so. Because – not only but very much so in the wine industry – greenwashing is starting to become – let’s face it – very common.

And this is where I want to ask Stephan Mehofer to join me on stage here. He is a shy guy, so I have to drag him in front of the heavy silk curtain into the spotlight for once. It’s not going to hurt, Stephan!

Let me tell you about Mehofer Neudeggerhof, a family winery in Wagram, Austria which is run by humble Stephan here, with the help from two full time local vineyard employees, one full time office employee, two to five seasonal vineyard workers and his sister Judith who is working on export markets, marketing and strategy. Together they work 23 ha vineyards in and around Neudegg. The winery has been in the family for ten generations and still uses the same house, cellar and vineyards like their forefathers. And like their forefather before, they think sustainability small. Small, like in family but also including direct community. The heating system that is 100% based on wooden chips produced from their own forest on the local mountain, heats not only the winery and their private home but also their direct neighbor’s house. Their own solar and photovoltaic systems combined produce a third of the energy the whole winery and private house needs. The plan is to be self-sufficient by 2022.

Stephan Mehofer
Stephan Mehofer

‘Sustainability is thinking in generations.’ Stephan said one time. So together with his family, he is making conscious decisions for the sake of his son Simon and all of his – many – nieces and nephews. They are between one and a half and nine years old and couldn’t care less about water usage or solar panels. Still, their future is his motivation. In the strong belief that his parents, grandparents and great-grandparents thought the same way about him back then. Talking about youth and the generation from tomorrow: never underestimate the power of education. The family made it a goal for themselves to educate people around them about the special environment in and around Neudegg. Reaching tourists and day guests through an interactive educational exhibition that is paired with art; but also, being part of different research projects together with the ‘Federal College and Institute for Viticulture and Pomology’. Lately Slow Food acknowledged their and their regions efforts to work on the local indigenous grape variety Roter Veltliner. The Slow Food Presidio Roter Veltliner Donauterrassen is now an official community that works together emphasizing and researching this old grape variety.

Certified organic since 1992, the family already have had some time to find their way in this complicated organic/sustainable/bio-dynamic wine world. ‘We chose to not put our efforts into satisfying different manifestos in order to get more certifications. We much rather find our own way, choose what we believe is necessary to be sustainable for our region and our winery’, Stephan tells me. ‘The question here again is: who are we really doing it for? Working sustainably that is. It is so obvious; I don’t even want to put a sticker on it.’

Additionally, to obvious choices like sustainable energy, thoughtful water usage and recyclable packaging material, a lot of thoughts go into the vineyard work. The vineyards on the beautiful terraces of the Wagram region go without irrigation all year and in summer everything around the grapevines blooms. A walk through the vineyards is almost like a walk in the park. Just with more wildflowers. And maybe more insects. Actually, the carefully selected seed mix for the cover crops is intending exactly that: different root lengths of plants to aerate the soil naturally and a mix of early and late blooming flowers to have as many insects living in the vineyard as possible. They love insects so much, they found it is better to roll or press the cover crop instead of cutting it. ‘When you cut or mulch the grass you lose 80% of the insect population’, Stephan explains to me. ‘Additionally, with rolling you save the floor from evaporation, meaning you keep the soil nice and moist and don’t expose it to the sun.’

Sustainability. What a word. It might seem clear in the beginning but when you take a closer look, it’s pretty complicated and hard to understand. It means different things to different people, at different places. It means leaving a safe and healthy world for future generations for Stephan and his family. ‘Sustainability is thinking in generations’ might be my favourite definition of the word and I wish more people would live after it.

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New wines: Late summer and Autumn 2020

Despite the tricky times Mr Whirly has been very busy in the summer of 2020 sourcing some fabulous new wines from vineyards that I have worked with in the past as well as new vineyards too!

Summer 2020

Imported in the last few months the following wines from Chateau Molhiere, Cote de Duras and Mehofer in Wagram, Austria who makes wonderful ” Organic ” wines and have done for almost 30 years. The Mehofer vineyard is featured on Jancis Robinson’s website too.

https://www.jancisrobinson.com/articles/guide-sustainability-heroes

More details to follow.

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Wines of the Month: September 2020

” This month is a time of change for all of us. The season’s are changing and so are we, as human beings. One thing I have learn’t from the last six months is the importance of eating and drinking well. Shopping for good food and wine locally. In the last few weeks there has been a lovely fishmonger open up on Moyser road and it’s such a joy to walk down there and purchase something some freshly caught fish or prawns or urchin from someone as passionate as you about their product. Check them out below & support them if you can.

https://www.lifeof.fish/

I have discovered so many new recipes from old cookbooks tucked away on the shelf and matched that perfect wine! So, let’s this September match the perfect wine with two styles of cooking. Let’s look at two completely different styles of Gruner Veltliner from Austria, their main white varietal and a grape they ” hang their hat on” in this up and coming wine country.

The wines we are going to look at are from two small vineyards, “Mehofer” in Wagram about an hour north west of Vienna, and their newly arrived 2019 Gruner Veltliner Klassik. Mehofer are ” Organic” & have been so for over 20 years. They make beautiful wines that are a joy to drink.

The other wine is from “ Beyer“, another small winery in Austria, made by Josef Beyer in Roselfdorf, Lower Austria ( south of Vienna). This wine could not be more different. The grape was picked later, In November rather than now, when the Mehofer grapes are being collected. This difference in harvest time means the grapes have more sugar within themselves. This equates to more sugar in the wine and also slightly more alcohol. But don’t let ‘ Mr Whirly” put you off, I know how we in England run a mile when we hear the word sweet with wine. Open up to this!

These two wines could not be more different. But with the delight of food and the different cultures of food we now absorb, I would love you all to enjoy these wines with something outstanding!

So for September, if you buy a bottle each of these wines I shall give you a massive 30% discount on the bottle price! £33. 95 slashed to £28.30. I will also send you the perfect pairing menu for each wine so you can enjoy cooking and matching the wine. One of the most important and enjoyable experiences in life is to find that perfect match! Delivered free to your door in local SW postcodes!

Here is the link below for the two wines to buy in this September deal!

Stay safe

Mr Whirly