If it’s too good to be true…

by Majestic Commercial

Tim BeckBy Tim Beck, Business Development Manager

 

I was always taught that if something appears too good to be true then it generally is, and that there is always a catch. Now although this may appear to be a rather sceptical viewpoint I have always found it to be pretty accurate. I may have tested this theory to my own detriment – one disastrous trip to Spain springs to mind!

That said, there are rare occasions when we are presented with a deal that is just too good, and is true! A case in point would be the contents of the Australian parcel of wine that Majestic have managed to get their hands on and are arriving into stores as I write this.

Somerton Semillon Sauvignon Blanc, South Eastern Australia

The highlight of the bunch I feel, being the Somerton Semillon Sauvignon Blanc, £3.74 ex VAT. With its grapes sourced from sites across South Eastern Australia, it encapsulates the trademark gooseberry & citrus characters from the Sauvignon that British drinkers currently crave, whilst the Semillon adds a certain smoothness, light peachy fruit & body to the wine.

Please contact your Account Manager if you would like to order this wine.

 

 

 

 

Summer Treats

by Majestic Commercial

Alastair FlemingBy Alastair Fleming, Key Account Manager for Majestic Commercial

 

With summer virtually upon us it’s time to start preparing for whatever good weather Mother Nature decides to throw at us this year. So whilst we’re thinking of pulling the barbeque out and wearing shorts for the first time in 6 months it’s also time to start thing about summer wines! For me when good weather comes I instinctively think Rosé wine and Europe is the place to go for value driven, mouth watering refreshing summer pinks. Below I have highlighted two of my favourites:

 

Torre Alta Pinot Grigio Rosé, Italy

Torre Alta Pinot Grigio Rosé, Italy
(exclusively available to our Commercial customers)

This wine demonstrates just why Pinot Grigio Rosé is so popular at the moment. The elegant bouquet displays strawberry aromas in abundance and intense notes of acacia flowers. Dry, soft and well-balanced on the palate with a round and full bodied structure. Pinot Grigio 95%, Merlot 5%.

 

 

Château de Sours Rosé, Bordeaux

Château de Sours Rosé, Bordeaux

Château de Sours, situated on a limestone plateau near Libourne and Pomerol, has been producing wine for over 200 years and is leading the renewed interest in Bordeaux rosé. A deep, bright-coloured rosé with rich strawberry and plum fruit flavours and a long lingering finish. Try with cold meats and pâtes.

 

 

 

 

On The White Track

by Majestic Commercial

Matt DavenportBy Matt Davenport, Key Account Manager for Majestic Commercial


In 2000 when I joined Majestic most people were buying one of 3 wines, Chardonnay, Chardonnay or if they were really adventurous, Chardonnay. People couldn’t get enough of the stuff. It seemed that the full bodied flavours of butterscotch and vanilla from the oak barrels hit the spot for almost every wine drinker.

Nowadays though, most of the sales analysis we do for Restaurants reveals that as a nation we're rather fond of Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio, why? For a start it’s definitely true that you can have too much of a good thing and at some point you’re going to want something different. But also these grape varieties offer freshness, liveliness and youthfulness with a subtle hint of style, elegance and welcomed fruit, a sharp contrast to the hard hitting new world Chardonnays. So, no wonder they appeal to so many people.

But if you go off the beaten track and steer away from Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio and you had to pick a wine for your family and friends at a restaurant, what are the alternatives?

I’ve singled out two wines that offer very different characteristics but are simply fantastic wines with or without food.

Baron de Baussac ViognierBaron de Baussac Viognier £5.08* Ex VAT

Pale yellow in colour, with intense aromas of white flowers. The palate is rich and lush with tropical fruits, dried apricots, hazelnuts and honey.

This wine would go superbly with a variety of foods such as salads, chicken and pork dishes.


Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi, Monte Schiavo £4.99* Ex VAT


Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi 2010 Monte Schiavo With pure citrus fruit, especially pineapple and lime, and a refreshing crisp finish, the palate is left invigorated after drinking this wine. 

With the invigorating citrus fruits this wine would be perfect with a variety fish dishes and white meats. This wine is not over powering and would give the fish a welcomed lift.

 

*Prices valid until 29 August 2011

English strawberry field in summer!

by Majestic Commercial

Enjoy a glass of roseWith the Royal Wedding almost upon us our colleagues in Chapel Down winery have chosen to share in the celebrations by allowing us to sell their fantastic English Rose for a mind blowing £6.99 inc VAT. If ever there was a better time to show off what our country can do with wine and celebrate this glorious weather then I havent known it!

English Rose is like taking a sip of a classic English strawberry field in summer!

At that price the chance arises to sell the wine by the glass and really get your customers enthused about our home produce. But hurry, the £6.99 inc VAT deal only lasts until 2nd May 2011.

Contact your Majestic Commercial account manager or your local Majestic store for further details.

Celebrate this Easter

by Majestic Commercial

India GoringBy India Goring, Key Account Manager for Central London

 

Deciding when to open a good bottle of Champagne is a tricky decision. Unless you’re one of those lucky few that can drink Veuve Clicquot as their ‘everyday wine’ most of us look upon it as a serious treat. I can be known to buy a bottle of Champagne and find it still sitting in my wine rack a year later, having happily swept past my birthday, Christmas, Valentine’s Day and my best friend’s wedding. All of the above perfectly appropriate ‘Champagne-drinking’ occasions.

Fish and ChipsLast Friday, having been eyeing up a bottle of Louis Roederer that I have been hoarding for God knows how long, I took the plunge. Having no plans to go out I called over previously mentioned best friend and we drank it… with fish and chips. Champagne and fish and chips is one of those food matches that I had earmarked as a bit of a myth, but it was absolutely delicious. The natural acidity of the Champagne cuts through the batter and the round body perfectly compliments the meatiness of the fish.

Champagne is one of my favourite things in the world to drink but the fact is that if you continue waiting for the perfect occasion to drink it then you’ll find the moment repeatedly passing you by. Let the bottle of Champagne itself be the occasion and I guarantee it will be a much more memorable experience.

There are plenty of options if your wine rack is looking a little sparse with either...

Nicolas Feuillate NV at £17*

Taittinger Brut Réserve NV at £27*

and (because we want to do it every Friday!) Prosecco di Conegliano Valdobbiadene at £7.99*

Nicolas Feuillatte NV Champagne    Taittinger Brut Réserve NV Champagne   Prosecco di Conegliano Valdobbiadene Extra Dry NV Italy

*Prices valid until 2nd May 2011

Chilean winery visit March 2011

by Majestic Commercial

By Matt Willshire, Regional Sales Manager for Majestic Commercial in the South and South East

A trip to Chile not only gives a chance to visit a beautiful country but also to learn more about wine producing in that country. I was lucky enough to have that chance in March, where a group of Majestic-teers went out to visit Chilean wine producers, Concha y Toro.

What is really impressed me was the different regional characteristics to be found. The central valleys of Chile, such as Maipo and Colchagua are well known for their red wine production. The temperate climate here is ideal for the production of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. The vineyards being stunningly framed by the Andes mountains to the east. A bike ride through the Cono Sur vineyards at Chimbarongo was an idyllic way to get around.

By contrast we visited Limari valley, four hours drive north of Santiago, the most northerly wine producing region. Here the climate is maritime, though it is largely dry during the harvest season meaning no problems with fungal diseases. We tried some outstanding Chardonnays, Syrahs and Pinot Noirs from the Maycas de Limari range. The prospect of good quality Pinot Noir production for the future looks to be the most exciting prospect for the future here.

Chilean winery visit March 2011  Chilean winery visit March 2011

WSTA Budget Report 2011

by rebecca_fisher

Yesterday in Chancellor George Osborne's Budget speech he announced there will be no additional changes to alcohol duty rates but a 2% above inflation rise in excise duties for wine and beer will be going ahead.

For further information click here to read The Wine and Spirit Trade Association (SWTA) updated Budget Report.

French specials for your wine list

by Majestic Commercial

Richard MilwardBy Richard Milward, Regional Sales Manager for Majestic Commercial in the South West, Central England and South Wales

 

With Easter finally in sight, it's a great time to offer customers some wine specials. With people still very price conscious, I think getting some ideas at the £16 to £17 sell price is really important. But at the same time, it's useful to introduce some new wines that have flair and interest. So with France having a superb 2009 & 2010 vintage (and starting to look better value too) take advantage of these great spring offers.

Château Mont Milan Blanc 2010 CorbièresChateau Mont Milan Blanc 2010 Corbières

Corbières cultivation is mainly associated with red grapes, although a tiny proportion of whites such as this are also made, from Macabeu and Grenache Blanc grapes.

This wine has a soft, bright, tropical and stone fruit character, while at the same time offering a fresh crispness; a very versatile wine, great with or without food.

Our ex vat price £4.16*
Sell £16.95 delivers 70.5%GP

La Croisade Réserve Grenache 2009 Vin de Pays d'OcLa Croisade Réserve Grenache 2009 Vin de Pay d’Oc

This wine comes from a selection of old vines of Grenache Noir and the vineyards benefit from the cooling breeze from the Mediterranean Sea. It shows intense and complex aromas of jammy strawberry with spicy hints of blackcurrant on the nose. While on the palate it is smooth, soft and velvety with a long and fruity aftertaste of cherry.

Our ex vat price £4.16*
Sell £17.50 delivers 71.5%GP


*Prices valid until 02/05/2011

Portugal - A whole new story

by Majestic Commercial

Alex Gittins, Regional Sales ManagerBy Alex Gittins, Regional Sales Manager for North England, North Wales, East Midlands and Scotland


To many people, Portuguese wine means Mateus Rose, unpronounceable and unrecognisable grape varieties and that thick sweet stuff you drink at Christmas. To say the countries table wine market is misunderstood would be an understatement! Portugal like its Iberian neighbour has perfect growing conditions for grapes, added to the warm climate the country also benefits from cooling influences from the Atlantic and the fabulous terrain of regions like the Douro.

Yes, we might not see the usual international varietals, but is that such a bad thing? As consumers become more aware and adventurous the prospect of another Kiwi Sauvignon or Chilean Merlot becomes a distinct turn off. And here we have the niche. Portugal has diverse regions with their own individual characters and the varieties which we can't pronounce actually make damn good wines with bags of ripe flavours and complexity.

Douro  Dao  Portugal


Here at Majestic our Portuguese range is currently on offer. Here are my best buys from our range:

Pena de Pato 2008 DaoPena de Pato 2007, Dao

£4.99* ex VAT

This inland region suffers cold and wet winters, but importantly a long warm and dry summer. The key varieties used here are Tinta Roriz and Touriga Nacional. This is fruit driven in style with lots of ripe red fruits with hints of minerality and savouriness, and a smooth finish. This really is stunning value and a wine that over delivers on any list in the key sub £20 price bracket.

Quinta de Azevedo, Vinho VerdeQuinta de Azevedo, Vinho Verde, 2010

£4.50* ex VAT

'Green wine' from the Minho region of Northern Portugal - Vinho Verde wine region. The varieties used at Azevedo are Loureiro (70%) and Pedernã (aka Arinto) (30%), which both produce beautifully delicate and fragrant dry wines. With complex aromas of white and tropical fruits, citrus and white flowers. A lively wine with the typical spritz, good acidity, and an intense and fresh finish.

*Prices valid until 2nd May 2011

Alex Gittins, Majestic Commercial

 

A sparkling education

by Majestic Commercial

Mark Cooperby Mark Cooper, Business Development Manager for Central London

 

Spring is pretty much here! There I've said it, cue thunderbolts, lighting, rain and even frosts maybe!  Typical English weather pessimism aside I feel it is the time of the year when your typical customer can be easily persuaded to trade up to a glass of fizz.

Sparkling wineThis has lead me to complete a number of staff training sessions with some of my clients to ensure their staff are fully equipped with the knowledge to take full advantage of the frivolity the onset of nicer weather inspires. 

On the staff training session I devoted a lot of time going through different methods of sparkling wine production that I will leave out here (if you are interested let me know and I can email you my notes).


First up and arguably the most popular fizz of the moment, Prosecco.

Prosecco di Conegliano Valdobbiadene Extra Dry NV Italy
Lovely and light with notes of pear drops, will be great to drink on its own, but also fun to experiment with food matches to desserts.

Next up was a Cava I have a lot of affection for having met the winemaker. When you consider the amount of effort that goes into making a bottle of Cava I feel it is grossly underrated by the current market.

Codorníu Selección Raventos NV, Spain
Originally this cuvee was reserved only for the Raventos family; the founders of Codorníu.  However they release it to the market to celebrate 125 years of Cava making. Lovely soft toasty flavours, balanced perfectly with mouth watering zestiness. It is a terrific wine for the money and will partner seafood just as well as any entry level Champagne.

Laurent-Perrier Brut NV Champagne
To complete the training we tried another wine I am particularly fond of; Laurent Perrier NV. Due to the high proportion of Chardonnay used in their blend to maintain their house style from year to year, this Champagne is beautifully soft, without the rasping acidity which I think often puts people off Champagne.  This will taste great with all the classics, smoked salmon, oysters and prawns.

Prosecco di Conegliano Valdobbiadene Extra Dry NV Italy   Codorníu Selección Raventos NV   Laurent-Perrier Brut NV Champagne


That was the end of the tasting session and there we go, staff equipped to sell fizz. All we need now is the spring weather.....

Mark Cooper

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