Top Crushes for Valentine's Day

It's Valentines Day this Wednesday and whether you've got a date planned, no plans, or in our case, a wedding in Amsterdam to attend, we've put together fourteen of our current crushes we think will get your heart racing. Order by midday Tuesday for delivery on the day, and for gifts simply enter your message in the Special Instructions box on the cart page and we'll do the rest.

Château Peybonhomme-Les-Tours l'Amour du Risque (£27)

 

Château Peybonhomme-Les-Tours is a pioneering natural Bordeaux estate run by the Hubert family in the village of Cars near Blaye since 1895. Now in its sixth generation, it has been organic and biodynamic since 2000 with a strong focus on maintaining a healthy, vibrant ecosystem that encompasses flora, fauna and animal life. 

L'Amour du Risque is a sumptuous 100% Cabernet Franc pét-nat from grapes grown in clay-limestone. It's brimming with juicy strawberry and raspberry fruit carried over very fine bubbles with crisp acidity and a hint of residual sugar adding body.

Château Barouillet Splash! (£25)



Vincent Alexis of Château Barouillet is an eighth generation winemaker; joining his father in 2010 when he started the organic project at the domaine - bottling their own wines rather than selling the grapes for bulk-blending. Organic conversion started with 6 hectares and since 2013 the entire estate has been organic. 

Splash! is a fragrant and lively pét nat made without sulphur from a plot of 40 year old Semillon vines grown in clay and limestone. Zesty lemon and lime aromas at first with a touch of cut grass and plenty of fizz.

Masot Strobe in the Night (£19)

Andrea and Daniele Da Ros set up Masot in 2009 in the the fairytale Treviso area of Sarmede, a collection of hamlets and stone houses lying on the slopes of the Cansiglio hills and the Pre-Alps. This area, with its meadows, woodland and vineyards, has always been home to the Da Ros family, and the siblings are following in the footsteps of their grandfather who was the first in the family to plant vines here.

Strobe In The Night is a spumante (full sparkling) Glera made from organic grapes in the heart of Treviso. Fine, persistent bubbles carry waves of lemon curd, chalky minerals and baking spices.

Ori Vin Que Shira Shira (£28.50)



Ori Vin is the project of Oriane Rosner in Milhavet, Gaillac. Relocating to Gaillac from London in March 2020, Oriane chanced upon Laure & Pierre Fabre of the nearby biodynamic Domaine Gayrard, volunteering her services in the vineyards and cellar. After learning everything she could, she produced her first solo vintage in 2021.

The second crop off 6 year old Syrah vines yielded this lively, blushing-pink pet-nat. It's shade darker and with a little more residual sugar than the 2021 vintage giving fruity and spicy quality, still undercut with good acidity.

Blurred Vines Spark (£18.50)

Blurred Vines is the non-alcoholic 'Alt-Wine' project of London based Three Sprit Drinks making seriously complex and immensely enjoyable alcohol free wine alternatives from ethically sourced plant based ingredients.

Spark is a lively pink fizz made from a cold brew blend of guayusa, green and black tea, redcurrant and strawberry juice, fermented apricot and grape wine and several botanical extracts including hibiscus, schisandra berry and cayenne pepper.

Mersel Wines Red Velvet (£24)

Mersel Wines is a small natural winemaking project in Lebanon working in the Maksar Mersel region, the highest in the country. All wines are made from organic grapes and bottled without fining or filtration.

A gorgeous hand-picked, organic Cinsault from vines grown at a whopping 1,200m above sea level in Deir El Ahmar, Bekaa Valley. Fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel, this has wonderfully high-toned aromas of cranberry, red apple, dried herbs and forest floor. Light-bodied and very fresh, this is an ideal red to drink chilled.

Vin Noé Nas Sans Julie (£35)

Vin Noé is the micro-negociant project of young Californian winemaker Jonathan Purcell who works out of a 100 year old cellar in the village of Auxey-Duresses in Burgundy.  The approach to winemaking is hands off with long and slow wild fermentations, no fining or filtration, and zero sulphur additions.

A play on Julienas from where the grapes from which this cuvée is made are grown, Nas Sans Julie is a deep and mineral expression of Gamay with ripe cherry and red berry fruit, plenty of classic barnyard and undergrowth aromas and a long and silky mouthfeel.

Pheasant's Tears Kisi (£24.50)



Making natural wine in the ancient viticultural centre of the Caucasus mountains, Pheasant's Tears work with traditional Georgian winemaking techniques and varieties. All wines are fermented and matured in qvevri, a unique Georgian ceramic vessel and one of the first containers ever used for this purpose thousands of years ago. 

A single varietal Kisi from grapes grown at 550m altitude. Skin contact lasts for 3 weeks, with maceration and subsequent fermentation taking place in the traditional qvevri. Classic Georgian orange wine, with aromas of ripe peach, almonds, fresh citrus acidity and a faint tannic grip. 

Bob Singlar Rouge (£20)

Domaine de la Mongestine is a young organic domaine in the Haut-Var region of Provence, about 50km east of Aix. The soil here is predominantly clay-limestone and while the climate is Mediterranean, the wines possess exquisite freshness and tension as a consequence of the vines being grown on a single large north-facing slope.

The Bob Singlar red is a crunchy berry fruit bomb made from Pinot Noir, Marselan, Merlot and Roussanne. Lively and vibrant with generous aromas and flavours of raspberry, red cherry and spice. A real delight served slightly chilled.

Domaine du Météore Sunflowers (£20)

Domaine du Météore is a unique Faugères estate located atop a 200 metre wide crater that was created when a meteorite crashed into the area 10,000 years ago. 

The Van Gogh Blanc is a special cuvée made in collaboration with the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, representing the link between nature and art, the South of France and Vincent himself. Adorned with a reproduction of Van Gogh's Sunflowers painting, this is a blend of Roussanne and Viognier with a delicate, mineral nose of flint which opens up to reveal flavours of lemon, pineapple and nutmeg.

Tillingham Rosé (£37)

 

Tillingham is the brainchild of winemaker Ben Walgate who crafts natural wines from his 70 acre farm near Rye in East Sussex.

The pink eye on the label is a nod to oeil de perdrix - an ancient style of rosé, which had the colour of a partridge’s eye. This is a dry and savoury style, packed with baked peach and strawberry notes, and a buttery texture on the palate. This is a serious yet seriously drinkable rosé.

Domaine Dandelion Rosie Red (£66)



Christian Knott and Morgane Seuillot of Domaine Dandelion have two hectares of old vines in a patchwork of small plots around the village of Meloisey near St Romain. Viticulture is organic with some biodynamics - Christian and Morgane spray raw milk on the vines instead of sulphur and eschew any machinery in the vineyards, preferring to employ their trusty horse. 

Their Rosie Red is a pure expression of Pinot Noir picked exclusively from Meloisey vines, macerated with the skins for about 20 days before gentle pressing and ageing in old oak.

Famille Arbeau Emoji Wine (£18)



Famille Arbeau are based in Fronton, a tiny but fascinating appellation on the river Tarn around 30 miles north of Toulouse. The Arbeau's winemaking roots in the area date back to 1878, and the domaine is now run by brother and sister Anne and Gérard Arbeau who have converted to organics in order to better express the unique terroir and grape varieties of Fronton.

Emoji Wine is a beautiful rosé made from Négrette with a touch of Syrah. Crunchy red berry fruit with an intriguing streak of iron minerality and touches of white pepper and violets on the finish.

Domaine Chamonard Fleurie 'La Madone' (£36)



One of the original 'Gang of Four' that started the natural wine revolution in Beaujolais, Jean-Claude Chanudet aka Le Chat and the late Marcel Lapierre were close childhood friends; they used to spin a globe, pick a country and travel the world together, working their way wherever they went. 

This is La Madone, the most famous plot in Fleurie (pictured top), and at 430m the highest of the appellation with a soil of pale pink decomposed granite, on a granite bedrock. Jean-Claude produces the most elegant expression possible from his wife Geneviève’s vines. It has a gentle colour, violet note on the nose, a wonderfully supple texture, and red and black fruits backed by a strong mineral character on the finish.