Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Sparkling Red Wine Roars Back Into Fashion!

Stop the presses! The Ideal Wine Company has discovered something that’s set to change the life of every wine enthusiast in the world. It’s OK to drink sparkling red wine again!

Sparkling wine

What do you think of when you hear the words “sparkling wine?” If you’re anything like us, you think of a premium bottle of sparkling white like the first-rate Champagnes sold by the Ideal Wine Company.

However, what many people don’t know is that you can also buy sparkling reds. These vintages combine the full-fruited flavour of a hearty red with the traditional tang of a carbonated creation, to produce a bottle that contrasts opposing elements to provide you with a unique drinking experience.

Wine trends

Believe it or not, sparkling reds were the height of fashion back in the 70’ and 80’s, however they faded into the ether of social obscurity during the 90’s. Yet trends always come zooming back into style if they’re given enough time, and according to the Telegraph, this is what’s currently happening to sparkling reds.

The publication reported that online supermarket chain Ocado has named sparkling red wine “the red wine style for 2015.” The firm elaborated by explaining that the ever-important British middle classes have started to desert the style of wine that has characterised tastes over the past decade, Prosecco, in favour of sparkling red.

“Red wine of 2015.”

Ocado buyer Julian Twaites explained: "With Prosecco and rosé wine still in favour, it’s no surprise that this equally light and fresh wine is now proving increasingly popular with shoppers."
He went on to comment: "The real breakthrough came with sparkling Shiraz from Australia – it had been bubbling for a while there, became niche in the mid-Eighties in the UK but is now being rediscovered by customers."

Buy Australian wines

The Ideal Wine Company hasn’t quite caught up with the times just yet, but we do have a fantastic selection of Australian wines that you’re destined to love. Why don’t you buy the Hobbs 2006 today? This unique bottle will provide you with a wine-drinking experience you’ll never forget! 

Monday, 20 July 2015

Scotland’s First Wine Branded “Undrinkable”

Scotland has produced its first wine in living memory. The Ideal Wine Company has learned that experts across the world have branded the concoction “undrinkable.”

Wine growing conditions

England’s neighbour to the north is known for many things; haggis, William Wallace, kilts, Holyrood and Ben Nevis among them. In particular the nation of the Loch Ness monster is known as one of the finest Whiskey producers on the planet.

However, Scotland has never had a reputation as a wine producer. This is because you need certain conditions to produce the quality grapes that are required to make an outstanding wine; conditions such as those enjoyed by our neighbours across the Channel, France. Scotland is a cold, wet, windy country that sees about as much sunlight as Scandinavia; it’s no France.

Scotland’s first home grown wine

Yet this hasn’t stopped one man from trying to beat the odds. The Daily Mail has reported that Aberdeen-based Christopher Trotter has produced Scotland’s first home grown wine in living memory in his vineyard in Fife.

Trotter succeeded; he produced a vintage which he has gone on to call “Chateau Largo.” From what we can tell, this is a hearty red that experts suggest has a sherry-like consistency. If we’re being honest, that was the nicest thing the experts had to say about Scotland’s first ever home grown wine.

Critics comment

The vast majority branded it “undrinkable” and “not fit for human consumption.” The first to try it was Richard Meadows, the owner of Edinburgh-based wine merchants the Great Grog Company. 

He said: “It has potential. It doesn't smell fresh but it's crisp and light and structurally it's fine. It's not yet drinkable but, that said, I enjoyed it in a bizarre, masochistic way.”

Even Trotter himself admitted the wine was “not great.” The wannabe wine-producer commented: "We have produced a vintage of, shall we say, a certain quality, but I’m confident the next will be much better. We have proved we can grow grapes in the Scottish climate."

Buy a Bordeaux

Yeah… we’re not holding our breath Chris; here at the Ideal Wine Company we think we’ll stick with our Burgundies and Bordeauxs thanks. If you want to see why we love French wines so much, why don’t you buy one of the Ideal Wine Company’s Bordeauxs today? 

Monday, 13 July 2015

Champagne Receives World-Heritage Status

The Ideal Wine Company were pleasantly surprised to learn last week, that various wine-making sites throughout the French region of Champagne have been awarded world-heritage status.

World-Heritage status

There are sites across the world which have a special cultural and/or natural significance to humanity. The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) set up the World Heritage Committee in the latter half of the 20th Century, to ensure that these sites are protected for the benefit of future generations.
The Committee, which is composed of representatives of the 21 UNESCO member states, carries out this task by awarding these sites ‘world-heritage status,’ based on six cultural and four natural criteria. Sites that make it onto the list can include buildings, cities, deserts, forests, islands and even lakes, and as of July 2015, there are 1031 sites on the planet that have been awarded world-heritage status.

39th World Heritage Committee

UNESCO held the 39th Session of the World Heritage Committee on Sunday 5th July, 2015. They used this as an opportunity to award world-heritage status to a number of culturally and physically significant sites including the vineyards of Burgundy. See why this famous wine-making region was awarded such a prestigious honour, by purchasing one of the fine Burgundian wines sold by the Ideal Wine Company.

Another wine-making region that was honoured by the World Heritage Committee at its 39th Session was Champagne; a land which is known for making the sparkling wine which bears its name. The Committee awarded world-heritage status to the Champagne industry’s vineyards, production sites, and sales points.

According to Quartz, the UN agency published a press release which explained why the “hillsides, houses, and cellars” of the Champagne wine region in the North-East of France deserve recognition. It said that: “The property encompasses sites where the method of producing sparkling wines was developed on the principle of secondary fermentation in the bottle since the early 17th century to its early industrialization in the 19th century.”

Try Champagne

UNESCO awarded sites in Champagne world-heritage status because they were integral to the development of the fermentation process, which allowed the world to produce sparkling wine. If you want to see why the region has been heralded for its role in the creation of sparkling wine, why don’t you try one of the Ideal Wine Company’s Champagnes, which you can buy from our website for very reasonable prices right now! 

Monday, 6 July 2015

The History of Cristal Champagne

If you’re looking for a first-rate Champagne, you should buy a bottle of Cristal from the Ideal Wine Company; a sparkling wine brand that’s steeped in history, glamour and political intrigue.

Luxury vintage

No birthday, anniversary or graduation is complete without a bottle Champagne. France’s signature sparkling wine is the ultimate luxury vintage; it adds that little touch you need to turn any celebration into a special occasion you’ll remember for the rest of your life.

No Champagne says ‘special occasion’ quite like Cristal. Typically created from a heady mix of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes, this Champagne brand is often considered one of the finest in the world. In part, this is because it has a fascinating and compelling history that has shaped its unique character ever since it was founded way back in the 19th Century.

Wine of the Tsars

Cristal was founded by Champagne producer Louis Roederer in 1876, on the orders of Tsar Alexander II of Russia. This led him to create what has since become known as Cristal Champagne; the first ‘prestige cuvee’ (blended wine of the highest quality), a vintage that was fit for an Emperor.
The Russian autocrat ruled a very unstable empire, and he feared that he would be assassinated at every turn; he feared that enemies would use the Champagne to hide a bomb! With this in mind, he demanded that Roederer store the Champagne in a bottle that was clear, so that he could see the bubbles and drink in safety. This led the producer to create Cristal’s distinctive clear, flat-bottomed bottle.

Pop culture Champagne

Since its creation, Cristal has maintained its status as the ultimate luxury product; it wasn’t even commercially available until 1945. It’s the 90’s where things get really interesting.

 The 90’s were the age of hip hop and rap culture. Dance-pop and disco were dead, and urban artists such as Jay Z, Tupac Shakur, Puff Daddy and Biggie Smalls ruled the airwaves. These music megastars made a habit of referencing Cristal in their song lyrics, turning the brand into pop culture phenomenon that’s lasted well into the 21st Century. Today, we associate Cristal with fast cars, giant mansions and mountains of cash; the jet set lifestyle.

Try Cristal

If this should tell you anything, it’s that Cristal Champagne has always been associated with success, glamour and luxury. If you want to find out why Cristal was the favoured brand of Tsars and hip hop stars alike, why don’t you try one of the Ideal Wine Company’s finest Cristals, the Louis Roederer Cristal 2000, today?