Spotlight on... Black Chalk
Over the last few years winemaker Jacob Leadley (left) and the small team at Black Chalk have calmly led this small Hampshire outfit to the upper echelons of English sparkling wine.
Now with a new winery nearly finished in the Test Valley and with the impending release of their third vintage (2017), Jacob and Black Chalk are embarking on an exciting new chapter.
Just landed and new to the site...
Here's a selection of newly landed wines that you're going to love.
Wine of the Week by Damo & Jono Koerner
Every week we highlight here a wine that we're particularly enjoying right now. Brothers Damo & Jono Koerner were the 2019 Young Guns of Wine in Australia and have been knocking out show-stopping wines from their family's Clare Valley vineyards for several years. This "Mammolo" (the Tuscan name for the Sciaccarello grape on Corsica) makes us go weak at the knees. Textured, juicy, jump-about-in-your-mouth-must-take-another-sip brilliance.
Koerner Mammolo Sciaccarello 2019
Clare Valley, South Australia
Sciaccarello (aka Mammolo)
Brothers Damon & Jono Koerner - the 2019 Young Guns of Wine - spent many years learning the art of growing top quality grapes from their parents. And their travels around Europe, visiting fellow winemakers in France and Italy, have helped them develop a preference for fresh, unoaked styles of red and Mediterranean whites. It's these Mediterranean varieties that really stand out on their Gullyview vineyard, which has been in their family for nearly forty years. The two brothers have also pioneered the use of ceramic eggs for fermentation, and are always striving to experiment while making naturally delicious, show-stopping wines.
Mammolo is a wine we've coveted for a long time and the brothers have shipped us a tiny amount of their 2019 vintage. The grape goes by a number of names and is traditionally referred to as Mammolo in Tuscany where it is a blending partner to Sangiovese. On the French island of Corsica it's called Sciaccarello and these guys use both names for their wines (for example see La Korse red blend).
It's from Vivian vineyard in Watervale, planted on black & red clay on limestone in 1998. Naturally fermented in open top steel tanks then aged in ceramic amphorae for three months and racked to steel tanks again for another seven months before being bottled unfined and unfiltered. Just 200 cases produced.
The Corsican name "Sciaccarrelo" means "crunchy" and this is definitely one of those lighter, juicier (but no less complex) red wines that makes us think of crunchy red fruit. Imagine the pop and burst of flavour when biting into currants in a summer pudding. Like all the Koerner reds this is beautifully aromatic too, with a spicy backbone and lively acidity. Just stunning.
Merger with The Knotted Vine
In the summer of 2019, Red Squirrel merged with fellow small specialist The Knotted Vine and created the Graft Wine Company, a supplier to some of the UK's top restaurants, bars and merchants. We still offer many of our wines to the public here online.
Named 3rd best drinks supplier in the UK
We were honoured to be voted by leading industry professionals the third best drinks supplier to the on-trade this year.
Nutkin wine bar pops up in Haggerston
For a few weeks at the end of 2015, we teamed up with a number of chefs - including the brilliant Smoke & Salt (pictured) - to launch Nutkin wine bar in east London.
2013 to 2014
At a market near you...
Red Squirrel popped up selling wine at markets and wine festivals across the country.
It all began in Liguria
Red Squirrel was created as an importer and online shop by Nik Darlington in summer 2012 after visiting producers in the little-known Italian region of Liguria, wines we still have to this day.