The Ultimate Christmas Gift Guide

It’s that time of year where Christmas is approaching and we start to think about those thoughtful gifts for our loved ones. Wine is often regarded as a ‘safe’ present and there is always something to suit all tastes and preference whether that be for your parents, friends or even colleagues. It’s easy to throw a bottle or two into your trolley when doing your festive food shop. As this year’s Christmas may be a little different, why not put some extra thought into your loved ones’ gifts and give them something that will make them smile this Christmas. A gift from The Sunday Times Wine Club isn’t just a gift, it’s an experience. Let us show you our top picks for all types of wine lovers with something to suit every taste and budget.

Something Special

Looking for that extra special gift for that very special someone? These four gifts will be perfect choices with something to please all tastebuds.

Champagne, Flutes & Truffles

£59

Delicious truffles and gold medal-winning Champagne… a match made in heaven if you ask us. This luxury gift will make the recipient feel well and truly spoiled. Not only does this set include tasty truffles and Paul Goerg’s gold medal-winning Champagne, you’ll also get two Dartington Crystal flutes to sip your Champagne from.

Laurent-Perrier Rosé Champagne, Flutes & Ice Bucket

£90

One of the most famous of all fine pink Champagnes. Champagne Laurent-Perrier’s rosé spends four years ageing in its cellar, developing great complexity. You’ll receive this presented in its special bottle and gift box, together with two Dartington Crystal flutes, and a Laurent-Perrier branded ice bucket, so you can serve these bubbles in style.

Six Bottle Luxury Mix

£100

If you struggle to decide on red, white or fizz for your recipient, this gift is the perfect option with a taste of all three. These six wines will enhance any occasion with their quality and complexity of flavour. This selection compromises Didier Chopin Champagne, Saracosa Governo Rosso, Domaine Dampt’s Petit Chablis, the reserve edition of our exclusive Mussel Pot Sauvignon Blanc and Château la Vallée Montagne Saint-Emilion and last but not least, Limited Release McLaren Vale Shiraz… all presented in a luxury gift box.

Picnic Basket Hamper

£115

Looking for that wow factor gift? This elegant hamper with luxurious blanket comes with two beautiful Dartington Crystal flutes and a bottle of Pol Roger Champagne, even more delicious well chilled. A generous gift which is perfect for couples. The upright hamper makes it a smart and convenient way to carry bottles to any occasion in the New Year to come.

Something Different

Perhaps you’re looking for something slightly different to gift this Christmas. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here are our top picks:

Wooden Wine Rack & Wine

£20

Choose from a rich and velvety Italian red or a tropical, zesty New Zealand white. Whichever you choose, it will come packed in a wooden box that soon turns into a handy six-bottle wine rack.

Prosecco & Flutes

£30

This one’s for the Prosecco lovers out there. Your recipient will receive stylish sparkling wine flutes, making family-run Terra Batista’s creamy and complex Prosecco even more elegant.

Barbadillo Sherry & Olives Pack

£35

Sherry and olives are the Spanish equivalent of cheese and crackers – the perfect pairing! Our Barbadillo Sherry & Olives Pack will see your recipient getting the taste of sunny Spain with the aromas and flavours of crisp and dry Manzanilla sherry paired with succulent, juicy olives.

Flowers & Champagne

£75

This fine festive bouquet of elegant amaryllis, red roses and carnations are offset perfectly with pinecones and white thistles. Plus there’s more than a touch of splendour in the bottle of superb Louis Roederer champagne to add some sparkle.

ETO Wine Preserver

£125

You can now save the rest for later with this ETO Wine Preserver. This is the best of the best when it comes to keeping your open bottle in a drinkable condition. Not only is it highly praised for its ability to preserve wine, it also serves as an elegant decanter. A new, beautiful way to drink responsibly!

Gifts Under £40

Discover a selection of perfect gifts for wine lovers all under £40. We’ve got some great ideas for stocking fillers too.

Stirrers

£5.95

Add some fun to a classic G&T or a cocktail with these flavoured edible stirrers from Holly’s Lollies. These make a perfect stocking filler for any cocktail lover with five flavours to choose from: Raspberry Gin, Mulled Wine, Rhubarb Gin & Custard, Gin & Lemon and Amaretto.

Discovery Mixed Duo

£20

Give the gift of wine discovery. In this duo you’ll find the fresh and fruity Il Basso Italian Merlot, a sure-fire crowd pleaser, and Viňa Tarapacá, our bestselling Chilean Sauvignon Blanc. A pleasing pair for someone who is just getting into wine.

Rioja & Glasses

£25

Delight any wine lover with this gift set, presented in a luxury gift box. From winemaker Javier Murúa comes his Barón de Barbón, our bestselling Rioja. Our accompanying glasses will enhance the oak-aged aromas and flavours, opening up its toasty and spicy notes.

Harrow and Hope Brut Rosé

£32

Give the gift of an elegant English sparkling wine this year. But this isn’t just any English sparkling wine, it was last year’s winner of Best English Vintage Sparkling Rosé. Harrow and Hope Brut Rosé use the classic Champagne grapes and traditional Champagne method. It’s got gorgeous berry and toasty richness. The lucky recipient will receive this fizz in a smart, wooden box.

Classic Mixed Trio

£35

We’ve picked wines from some of our most talented producers for this trio. Javier Murúa’s toasty and silky Barón de Barbón is our bestselling Rioja, the Zonin family makes our fresh and creamy Luminoso Leggero Prosecco, and our tropical and crisp Company Bay Sauvignon Blanc is crafted by one of Marlborough’s pioneering cellars.

Or why not try?…

Home Tasting Experience

£80

Say hello to the do-it-yourself Home Tasting Experience. Not only will you SAVE 20% on a six-bottle showcase of delicious quality wine, which includes six glasses, and a Cabalié branded corkscrew, you’ll gain access to an in-depth tasting tutorial for each wine from our Wine Educator, Grant Hedley. Together, you will learn:

  • How to taste like a professional
  • All about the various grape varieties, regions and producers
  • Tasting notes for each wine
  • Perfect food and wine pairings

It’s the perfect gift for those wanting to learn more about wine, it’s also a great gift for yourself too. Find out more about what’s included in a Laithwaite’s Home Tasting Experience by clicking here.

We hope that you’ve found some inspiration for gifts to give this Christmas. You can view our full range over on our webpage.

Prices correct as of 17th November 2020.

To all supporters and fans of our lovely Windsor Great Park Vineyard and its sparkling success

Tony Laithwaite checks in at Windsor Great Park Vineyard, to give you an update on the terrific 2020 vintage just harvested, and to say thank you to all the followers and friends of this delicious, award-winning fizz.

If you’re not yet a follower of this superb English Quality Sparkling wine from Windsor Great Park Vineyard, that has created headlines all over the world, contact your Wine Advisor to hear all about it and how you might join.

Coastal Citrus Gin Instagram Giveaway Full Terms & Conditions

  1. The promoter of the competition is Direct Wines Limited (operator of the Sunday Time’s Wine Club), One Waterside Drive, Arlington Business Park, Theale, Berkshire, RG7 4SW, registered company no 01095091 (“DW”).

2. The competition is open to all residents of the U.K. (England, Scotland and Wales but not Northern Ireland, Channel Islands and BFPO) who have reached at least eighteen (18) years of age at the time of entry (the “Competition”). The Competition is not open to directors, officers, agents, contractors and employees of Direct Wines  or Manly Spirits UK, any of their affiliated or associated entities or divisions, their advertising and promotional agencies or members of the aforementioned individuals’ respective immediate families living in the same household.

3. By participating in the Competition, each participant accepts these terms and conditions of the Competition and agrees to be bound by them. The Competition is subject to all applicable laws.

4. To enter the Competition, the entrant must between 00:00 04/11/2020 and 23:59 11/11/2020:

a. like the competition post on the @sundaytimeswineclub Instagram page;

b. comment on the post on the @sundaytimeswineclub Instagram page with the answer to the question “What Australian suburb is Manly in?”

c.follow @sundaytimeswineclub and @manlyspiritsuk Instagram pages.

5. Only one (1) entry per person. Multiple entries may cause you to be disqualified.

6. The entrant also agrees to grant DW, Manly Spirits UK and their direct or indirect licensees, assignees and agencies a royalty-free, exclusive, worldwide, assignable, sub-licensable and irrevocable licence to use, publish, reproduce, edit, exhibit, project and display the post for the purposes of advertising, marketing and promotional activity, in connection with promoting DW’s and Manly Spirits UK’s products and services.

7. In doing so, the entrant agrees to waive their moral rights under section 205 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 and to waive any right that they may have to inspect and approve any use made of the post within the scope of licence granted under paragraph 6 above.

8. The entrant releases DW and/or Instagram from any claims for remuneration associated with the use of the post.

9. The entrant must read and understand the privacy policy for this Competition at www.sundaytimeswineclub.co.uk/privacy. In addition, the following privacy notice applies to the Competition:

When you enter this competition, you’ll provide us with your details of your Instagram account and the information you share in the post with DW. If you are a winner, we will ask for your postal address so that we can deliver your prize to you, and we may ask for additional information in order to verify your age. We obtain all of this information from you directly.

We’ll use your personal data in order to run the competition fairly and properly, and if you are a winner, to tell you that you’ve won the competition and to make any further arrangements with you, including to repost your winning entry on social media..  We may pass on your details to verify your age to ensure that we only give products containing alcohol to those aged 18 or over, and the CAP Code requires us (as the promoter of this competition) to either publish or make available certain information about prize winners. You can object to this information being published or made available by contacting us on 03330 142776 or dpo@sundaytimeswineclub.co.uk. Please note that, even if you opt out, we may still have to provide the information and winning entry to the ASA.

If your competition entry is a winner, we may share your details with the courier company we use to deliver your prize to you; the company we use to carry out age verification checks (if required); and with our core IT services providers.

10. The prize is 1 x 70cl bottle of Manly Costal Citrus Gin.  There will be one (1) winner of the prize. The winner of the prize will be selected randomly by no later than 19/11/2020.

11. The winner of the prize will be selected from eligible entries. The winner of the prize will be contacted on the same day as the draw via Instagram. Three attempts will be made to contact the winner of the prize. If the winner does not respond via direct message within 7 days of DW’s first message to accept the prize, an alternative winner will be selected. If an alternative winner must be selected, the selection process will be repeated, and the new winner will be contacted via Instagram.

12. DW will contact the winners by private message on Instagram in accordance with paragraph 11 above and will request their details (name, address and email) for the purposes of claiming their prize only.

13. DW will send the winner 1 x 70cl  bottle Manly Spirits Costal Citrus Gin.   No refunds will be given.

14. DW cannot be held responsible for any prize not received by the winner.

15. All prize draws will be completed by a verifiable random draw.

16. Odds of winning the prizes will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received.

17. DW retains sole discretion to withhold prizes without liability if in its view a participant is ineligible, the entry is invalid, or a winner does not meet the necessary requirements as set out in these terms and conditions.  DW may use the services of a third party to verify the age of any winner.

18. DW reserves the right to withdraw or amend the Competition in the event of unforeseen circumstances or circumstances outside of its control.

19. You acknowledge that the Competition is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Instagram.

20. You acknowledge and accept that Instagram will not be responsible or liable for this Competition. 

21. DW is not responsible or liable for:

a. Any entry for which the post or comment is lost, deleted or deemed abusive by Instagram;

b. Any accounts that are deemed to be fraudulent or not authentic;

c. Unforeseen changes in Instagram’s legal or commenting rules & regulations;

d. Any external factors that may restrict a participant from accepting their prize;

e. Any entries that cannot be found by DW due to the entrant’s account being locked, suspended, blocked or otherwise inaccessible to general users of Instagram.

22. DW shall not be liable in any way for a) any costs or expenses associated with claiming or redeeming any prize and not specifically included within the prize as stated in the Competition, b) any damages, liability or injury arising out of or in any way connected with the Competition or the prize other than those costs and expenses specifically stated in the Competition. Nothing in this disclaimer is intended to limit DW’s liability for death or personal injury arising out of DW’s negligence.

23. There is no cash alternative for the prize.

24. If there is a dispute between you and DW in relation to the Competition or these terms and conditions, you may take legal action against DW, and DW may take legal action against you in either the English courts or the local courts in the part of the UK where you live. The applicable law will be that of the location of the court.

Will Lyons: Autumn Wine Live

Pull up a chair, pour yourself a glass of wine and settle in as we discuss my autumn wine selections for The Sunday Times Wine Club. Join us for a lively hour as we discuss all the latest news from the European harvest, talk to one of New Zealand’s top winemakers, Warren Gibson at Trinity Hill, look at some seasonal food and wine pairing ideas as well as answering all your wine related questions. Click on the link below to catch up on my latest live event from October.

Will Lyons

Club Vice President

Travel vicariously with Will Lyons as he recalls a memorable trip with club members and readers of The Sunday Times along the Rhône River

Timing is everything on the water. No sooner had we sat down for our main course than we were told that we were approaching the confluence, the area in the heart of Lyon where the Rhône and Saone rivers meet. From the top of a river boat the flood lit, bohemian quarter provides a dramatic backdrop. On a Friday night with the town’s youth spilling out, lining the banks of the Quai Saint Antoine and bistros, full to the brim, their windows steamed up by the throng inside, it felt like sailing through an opera set. We had arrived about an hour ahead of schedule, hence our presence in the dining room and not on the upper deck. The great wine enthusiast Oz Clarke had just embarked our voyage at Vienne and was already, glass in hand, soaking up the view as we snaked our way through the nightscape of Lyon. There was nothing for it. The cheese would have to wait, timetables are there to be broken so our happy table upped sticks and joined the assembled throng as we glided under low bridges and floodlit embankments through Lyon on that balmy, early, autumnal evening.

The hills of the Rhône Valley, dotted with pine trees and olive groves, have always produced some of France’s most drinkable red wines. Here the luscious, sweet-fruited reds, often a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre, can produce wines that in the north of the valley have a vivid colour, wonderful, rounded-texture with a distinctive smell of white pepper. In the south of the valley the wines are more generous, easy to like, drinkable and often reasonable in price. In autumn, the valley comes into its own as the temperature drops, throwing up spectacular sunsets, atmospheric, misty mornings and the odd sun drenched afternoon. The Sunday Times River Cruise, with club members, subscribers and Riviera passengers was a perfect way to explore its charms. We began our journey in Avignon, stepping off the TGV we were met with an ochre sky, the early evening air heavy with the smell of pine, lavender and wild herbs. “Provence!” We exclaimed as we left the confines of the north behind us.

Will Lyons with fellow passenger onboard the William Shakespeare as they sailed up the Rhône River

Over the course of seven nights we explored its charms, following in the footsteps of Romans as we stopped off in Arles, admiring its amphitheatre and terracotta coloured rooftops, before we reached the granite outcrop of the hill of Hermitage, sailing past the vineyards of Condrieu and Ampuis home to the prized vineyards of Côte-Rôtie. We finished in the cellars of Burgundy where two grape varieties dominate, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, although it is the region’s third variety Aligoté, which produces a light, crisp white wine that is seeing an upswing in quality.

As our ship, The William Shakespeare, heaved its way along the river through precarious locks, past the ruined castle of Châteauneuf-du-Pape and dramatic gorges we made many friends, from Hollywood producers to amateur hot air balloonists as we all gathered for two wine tastings ‘on the water’ enjoying club wines from along the river and across the world. Wine brought us together. Sitting down with a glass of something special, sharing memories and stories amidst laughter and conviviality is what The Sunday Times Wine Club is all about.

Understandably we don’t yet know when we will be able to come together again but rest assured at the club we have been busy planning a series of events so we can come together virtually and enjoy some interesting wines to discuss and enjoy. At the end of this month I will be sipping three spectacular wines inspired by the season we find ourselves in. Join me on the evening of the 28th October as we travel vicariously along the wine route. Tasting a Syrah, inspired by those ancient examples in the northern Rhône, from Hawke’s Bay in New Zealand, to a delightful, supple Rioja from Spain. Finishing with a glorious white wine which punches well above its weight from the southern hills of the Languedoc. I do hope you can join me. So pull up a chair, pour yourself a glass and drink along as we travel vicariously together along the wine route.

Buy Will Lyons Autumn Trio here.

Will Lyons

Club Vice President

Behind the Bottle: An Interview with Manly Spirits Co.

If you love gin, then you’re in the right place. Not only do we stock wines from every corner of the globe, but we have a whole range of spirits and gins in our inventory too, coming from local, and not so local producers. If you’ve never had the joy of tasting an Australian premium gin, you’re in luck. Let us introduce you to Manly Spirits Co.

Capturing the diverse botanicals Australia has to offer, Manly Spirits Co. doesn’t mess about when it comes to making high quality spirits. Founders David and Vanessa opened their very own distillery located on Sydney’s Northern beaches in April 2017, with inspiration coming from the stunning surrounding marine environment. Their extensive gin range is distilled, bottled and labelled all from the distillery in Manly Beach, Australia. It’s not just gin that Manly Spirits Co. are producing either. Whisky, botanical vodka and a number of liqueurs are behind the brand too and are all made using artisanal methods and with the surrounding marine environment in mind.

We’re lucky enough to have tried, and also stock their Coastal Citrus Gin. Produced with Australian native and marine botanicals which include Lemon Aspen, Sea Parsley, Lemon Myrtle, Fresh Coriander Leaf and Meyer Lemon, this citrus number is perfect in a G&T and also makes a number of great cocktails.

We recently caught up with Beth from the distillery who tells us more about Manly Spirits Co. and their impressive and delicious Coastal Citrus Gin.

Fancy trying this yourself? Click here to purchase your very own and let us know what you think.

Cheers from all of us at The Sunday Times Wine Club and from the team at Manly Spirits Co.

Wine and Chocolate tasting with Grant Hedley & William Curley

Wine and chocolate are two of the most wonderfully indulgent and delightful products that we can enjoy. Our in-house wine educator, Grant Hedley, was lucky enough to be joined by William Curley, the immensely talented chef and chocolatier. William Curley became the youngest Chef Pâtissier in the Savoy’s history. He works with only the finest ingredients to create handmade morsels from heaven.

Together, they worked hard on some fantastic wine matches for his fabulous chocolates. Three of our wines and six of his chocolates were to be enjoyed for a tasting evening, and you at home could purchase them yourself and join in virtually over Zoom as they discuss the pairings.

For those who could not join us on the evening, you can catch up and find out more on the delectable matches in the recording from the session below. The featured wines are available to purchase if you wish to sip alongside the video.

F.W. Nalbach Sonnenschein Riesling 2019

£14.49 a bottle or £12.99 when you mix 12 or more*

Marqués de Murrieta Capellanía Reserva 2015

£24.00 a bottle*

Pillastro Selezione d’Oro 2019

£13.99 a bottle or £11.99 when you mix 12 or more*

*Prices correct as of 21st October 2020.

Sir Harold Evans and the birth of The Sunday Times Wine Club

Sir Harold Evans, the pioneering former editor of The Sunday Times, is remembered as one of the most important figures in post war Fleet Street history. Among his many considerable journalistic achievements on both sides of the Atlantic, there is another legacy that he leaves behind in our world, that is perhaps not as widely known. In the early seventies, with Tony and Barbara Laithwaite, he was instrumental in creating and setting up The Sunday Times Wine Club.

Sir Harold Evans

It was the Summer of 1972, Starman by David Bowie was making its way up the charts, England were busy retaining the Ashes and Billy Jean King had just won her fourth Wimbledon title. In the political world Edward Heath was in 10 Downing Street, across the pond Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein had just published the first revelations of the Watergate scandal for The Washington Post while in Denmark Queen Margaret II succeeded to the throne, the first female Monarch of that country since 1412. The less said about the vintage in Bordeaux, the better.

Newspapers were going through a golden age. Unrivalled in today’s terms, with no social media or the internet, they were at the heart of the national conversation. The Sunday Times world famous Insight team had already published investigations into the Profumo affair and revealed that Kim Philby was the third man in the Cambridge Spy Ring before Harry Evans became editor in 1967. Harry, as he then was, quickly made his mark, leading the newspaper’s investigation into the thalidomide scandal which led to greater compensation for the payouts to victims.

Under Nicholas Tomalin the Insight team had also published a series of articles on malpractice in the wine business. Believe it or not in those days you were allowed to bottle wine in the U.K. directly from the barrel. By all accounts some unscrupulous wine merchants were importing ‘wine’ from north Africa and labelling it whatever they wanted. Pomerol in Bordeaux and Pommard in Burgundy – sometimes from the same tank! Possibly.

The article prompted a letter from another Durham graduate, Tony Laithwaite who started his career washing bottles in Bordeaux. He wrote to his fellow Durham Univeristy alumni at The Sunday Times, Harry Evans, and said that his young company, under the railway arch in Windsor, had no truck with fake wine as he imported wine direct from the growers in France; as he described: from ‘château bottled clarets, from châteaux that do actually exist – no fantasy at all.”

Harry published the letter in full and with a circulation of nearly 4 million, sales from Arch 36 received a welcome fillip. A few reader offers ensued and a year later the club was born with Allan Hall, writer of the ‘Atticus’ column as the resident writer. Hall wasn’t a wine writer but had flair and had recently inspired the Beaujolais Run with his prize of a bottle of Champagne for the first arrival of nouveau to be delivered to his desk at The Sunday Times. It was won by an enterprising wine lover who had procured the use of a private plane.

But they needed a President. Who better than the great wine writer, soon to be the most successful wine writer in the world – Hugh Johnson, (described by Tony as a dapper laddie in a bow-tie!) When I corresponded with Sir Harry Evans from New York in 2018 he said Hugh was ‘key to the whole enterprise.’

Hugh Johnson, Tony Laithwaite & Will Lyons

“Harry had made me travel editor in 1967,” recalls Hugh over a coffee in Kensington. “Earlier I had been their wine correspondent so when his Insight team had a story about dubious wine being bottled in Suffolk he asked me to look over it. He then thought it was a good idea to get me involved in the Club, I didn’t need much persuading and was made President.”

With Tony hunting through the vineyards of France sniffing out authentic characteristic wines of marked character’those early days must have been great fun as Hugh and Tony both traversed the globe, often with members in tow, to find new wines. Cruise ships were chartered; sailing trips around the Mediterranean were organised onboard the Star Clipper, a four-masted barquentine and the Marques. Private planes were occasionally hired and a festival in London was launched which still takes place every year in the Spring. Hugh recalls, in one of his many distinguished books, a one day trip to Bergerac where they landed on an airfield which doubled as a football pitch. They even got a mention in Private Eye when the Pseuds Corner column included two of their tasting notes. (Not sure if those were written by Hugh!)

On another occasion three hundred club members gathered at Quaglino’s in Mayfair to celebrate the club’s fifth birthday. Harold was the guest of honour and Hugh recalls in his memoir ‘On Wine’ that his speech was ‘so poignant and so funny that when he left to go back to work at half-past ten, the whole company rose, clapping and cheering, to see him off.’

That night the editor closed down The Times and The Sunday Times for a year.

Tony remembers it as an historic evening. “Harry’s final words were: ‘Thank you and now I must leave you to go back to The Sunday Times … and shut it down.’ The only part of the Sunday Times that carried on working that year was The Club with adverts in The Observer and The Telegraph!”

It was the same year the club tie was launched, with a vintage guide printed on the inside, as Hugh recalls, ‘the only tie to go out of date within a year.’ It was never to be repeated!

Today the club is one of the largest in the world.

“We owe a huge part of our success to Harry,” says Tony speaking from the vineyard at Harrow & Hope in Buckinghamshire. “Bordeaux Direct was a tiny company, a few thousand cases a year. We would still be a little company if it was not for The Sunday Times Wine Club and Harry made it all happen.”

When I became vice-president of The Sunday Times wine club in 2018 keen to learn more about the early years of the club I wrote to Harry in New York. Our initial meeting in London was postponed and we were due to meet this Summer in Manhattan. I had planned to take him to the Knickerbocker Club for lunch to tell him that the club was in rude health and thriving and of course to hear stories of the old days.

Will Lyons, Wine Club Vice President

I was reminded of something Tony once said to me when I was writing a weekly wine column for The Wall Street Journal. Tony said “that all he really wanted to do was to bring back to Britain a little of the passion for wine he experienced as a young man in the southwest of France.”

Well I think together with Barbara and Hugh he has done that and we’re all very lucky to have enjoyed the foresight of one of Fleet Street’s giants.

Will Lyons

Club Vice President

A virtual evening of Wine and Chocolate tasting with William Curley

Hi everyone,

We’re inviting you to our very special virtual event on Thursday 15th October at 7pm, chocolate and wine tasting with myself and William Curley. These are two of the most gloriously indulgent and delicious products, I’m so excited for this virtual tasting I can hardly contain myself.

For those of you who don’t know William Curley, he is an immensely talented chef and chocolatier. He works with only the finest ingredients to create handmade morsels from heaven. He’s so talented he became the youngest Chef Pâtissier in the Savoy’s history – that’s quite impressive! I don’t think I am stretching matters when I say, you haven’t tried chocolate until you have tried William’s chocolate, it’s like a fine dinning or Michelin Star experience for chocolate lovers.

I spent an evening with William recently, hard at work, matching some of my favourite wines to his fabulous chocolates. We managed to narrow down the selection to just three wines and six of his chocolates, I can’t wait to share and talk through the fruits of our labours with you alongside William on the evening.

But don’t worry, it won’t just be us tasting theses delights. We’ve put together the trio of wine for you to order for yourself and a selection of William’s chocolates, so you have the choice to taste along with us from the comfort of your own home. You can purchase the trio of wine by clicking here and the selection of William Curley’s chocolates here.

We will be hosting this event via Zoom Meetings. For more information, to book your free place and to receive joining details, please click here.

I hope to see you on the evening.

Best wishes,

Grant, Wine Expert

Tony Laithwaite checks in with Jean-Marc Sauboua at Château La Clarière

For an update on what’s been happening this year at Château La Clarière, take a look at this video Tony Laithwaite recorded for his Confrères with head winemaker Jean-Marc. They have a relaxed chat about how the vintage has been so far, what’s new outside and inside the cellar, and how the wines are tasting.

Not yet a Confrère of La Clarière? Visit www.sundaytimeswineclub.co.uk.conf  to find out more.