The 38th London Wine Fair, with over 14,000 wines from 40 countries available for tasting, was a truly fantastic wine event for buyers, sommeliers and anyone involved with the wine industry.
This year, the event seemed somewhat physically smaller. Nevertheless, there were still many exciting wine (and spirit) discoveries to be made.
Here are some highlights from the Fair – the tastings that I enjoyed and the good experiences. As a matter of course, I am not providing any tasting notes as these can be found on the relevant winery/merchant website. Of course, many wines demanded to be matched with food, which really is another dimension and demands another article!
So here it is, ‘London Wine Fair 2018 highlights’.
Italy first. There were many fine wines from italy, This year’s picks: Pergilus 2017, a good vino spumante brut from Bellalma Azienda Agricola, Perugia. For metalheads the interestingly named Heavy Metal Cabernhell: a blended Cabernet Sauvignon from Heavy Metal Winery, Monte San Giusto. There were fine wines from Umbria, from the estate of I Girasoli Di Sant’Andrea Azienda Agricola: their Girasoli Di Sant Andrea Trian Umbria 2016 was especially good.
The Spanish bodegas wineries were a major force at the event, with many fine wines from the many areas and communities of Spain. Too many to taste! But I have picked out two Bodegas of note. From the Hacienda Zorita, at Arribes del Duero. A fine range of wines especially the Hacienda Zorita Crianza 2013 and the reserve Syrah 2015.
There was a fine range of sherries from Bodegas Diez-Merito, Jerez de la Frontera, in particular the well-known brand Bertola was available for tasting.
From Portugal. Their wines are becoming more available as Portugal becomes a more popular holiday destinattion. Good example wines from Santos & Seixo a company owned by two families especially the Santos de Casa Reservas; Vinho Regional Alentejano 2015 and the Douro DOC 2015.
From Lebanon: Sendiana wines, Kornet Chehwan, El Metn, good wines from the maritime aspect of Mount Lebanon. An IWSC silver medal winner: Sediana Rouge 2014.
From China, from the Zhejiang Yumberry Juice Company, presented a spirit drink called Yumm. This is a spirit distilled from the fermented yumberry fruits in Xianju, Zhejiang province. Yumberry fruit is also known as Chinese bayberry or Chinese strawberry. The six-year old Yumm 1007 was beautifully flavoured, smooth and rounded.
There were wines from Romania and Moldova, especially a range of wines from Transylvania, in particular the Legendary Dracula brand, from Transylvania Wine Ltd.
Finally, there was new wine country on show – from Uzbekistan. The wine company Uz Sharob Sanoat, Tashkent, which now represents 226 enterprises from Uzbekistan, had some good wine and spirits available. There were interesting red semi-sweet red wines named Samarkand and also Bukhara. Uzbekistan vodka came in the shape of a beautiful bottle: Royal Elite a superb traditional vodka, 8 times distilled, from Tashkent.
Last but not least, events provided by the International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) proved very popular: attending as I did the Canada Wine Experience. Canadian wine Jackson-Triggs Sunrock Shiraz 2015 was very popular.
See you next year!
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