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The big boys are moving into premier French wine regions

Both Louis Jadot and E.Guigal have been snapping up properties in some of France's finest wine regions.
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Both Louis Jadot and E.Guigal have been snapping up properties in some of Frances finest wine regions.

Louis Jadot purchased Domaine Prieur-Brunet, securing 18 hectares of prime Cote de Beaune including Grand Cru vineyards in Bâtard-Montrachet and a number of Premier Cru sites.

While Maison E.Guigal has purchased Domain de Nalys’s 50 hectare estate in Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Both purchases are considered a rarity where it is difficult to acquire quality vineyard sites.

Louis Jadot is best known as a negotiant buying grapes to make their wines rather than owning vineyards. However a move by more estates in Burgundy to bottle their own wine has put pressure to acquire more vineyards.

Maison E.Guigal, the Northern Rhone power house, has been a negotiant in Châteauneuf-du-Pape since 1946 but this is their first vineyard purchase in the region.

No mention of price was available but land in Châteauneuf-du-Pape is expensive and some experts predict that the price may have been as high as €45m for the 50Ha, with vineyards in Burgundy worth even more per hectare.

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Australia export growth soars by 10% in 2017

Australia export growth soars with exports to China up by 44%
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Australia’s wine markets have been slowly changing over the years. Gone are the days where Australians brought their sunshine in a bottle to the UK as its key export market. This week Wine Australia has released its export figures to June 2017, and while China is still their top export market, the growth in the last year has been huge, up 44% by value to 607m Aus dollars (£370m). The USA is still number 2 with Aus $464m (£280m) up 3%. The UK is in third place at $341m (£207m) but down 7%. Canada and Hong Kong are both a distant 4th and 5th down 5% and 8% respectively.

Shiraz is Australia’s biggest export wine, almost double the next highest export grape Cabernet Sauvignon. Surprisingly the growth has not been at the bottom end; there have been bigger gains in wines above $20 (£12) worth more and growing faster than cheaper wines.

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Bolney Estate is the UK Wine Awards top winery 2017

The UK Wine Awards where held on Wednesday and the winner of the UK Vineyard of the Year went to the West Sussex Bolney Estate.
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The UK Wine awards were held on Wednesday and the winner of the UK Vineyard of the Year went to the West Sussex Bolney Estate. We’ve already mentioned other winners, among which Coates & Seely who won the Outstanding Sparkling Wine in 2017 for its La Perfide 2009.

Co-Chair Susie Barrie pointed out the continued quality of UK Bacchus but also gave special mention to the rising stars of Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc which are expected to win gold medals in the near future.

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Liv-Ex releases updated Right Bank classification based on 1855 criteria

Liv-Ex's biannual update of the right bank classification based on 1855 'left bank' criteria.
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In 1855 Bordeaux’s left bank was classified by merchants looking to send wine to the Paris Exhibition. The wines were ranked simply by price.

Liv Ex released their take on Right bank wines using a similar system.
This biennial classification sorts wines based on retail prices. At the very top of the right bank is Petrus (Pomerol) followed by Le Pin (Pomerol), Ausone (St Emilion), Cheval Blanc (St Emilion), Lafleur (Pomerol) and Angélus (St Emilion). On this basis, they would all be considered first growths.

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Madeira from 1796 found in New Jersey Mansion

Several cases of 221 year old Madeira found, but people are worried it may not taste good.
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Americans used to have a preference for Madeira wine, with many improving on the long sea voyage. So it is not surprising that very old bottles of Madeira turn up from time to time. But several cases of the 1796 vintage have been uncovered in the New Jersey Mansion, Liberty Hall. The wine is 221 years old and while no one has yet tasted the wine, there are doubts about its drinkability. Wines this old make interesting Museum pieces. Thankfully Liberty Hall is a Museum. It looks like they have a new exhibit!
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Waitrose launches mid priced bag in box format

Waitrose launches a mid priced bag in box wines with a top priced wine selling for the equivalent of £7.49/750ml
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Waitrose the upmarket supermarket has launched a mid priced bag-in-box wines. The most expensive is a 1.5L Côte Bleu Méditerranée Rosé at £14.99/1.5L or £7.49/750ml. Competitors, such as Tesco, sell a range of bag in box wines of 2.25L and 3L for between £2.97/750ml and £6.23/750ml with most retailing at around £5/750ml.

The new range also includes The Beefsteak Club Malbec (RRP: £20.99/ 2.25L) and Marlborough Springs Sauvignon Blanc (RRP: £20.99/ 2.25L), both equivalent to £7/750ml. The rest of the wines in the range are around the typical £5/750ml price point.

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When you order wine by the glass at a restaurant, which of these statements is most often true?