Father Christmas this year comes disguised as Mark Cronshaw of The Wine Company in Colchester. He has offered some huge savings on fine wines for yuletide glugging, and so while this Mini-Bar costs somewhat more than our usual offers, it does include special treats for your holiday feasting. There are three great Burgundies, and that rarity — a really fine, mature Rioja.
First up is a delectable Chablis 1er cru Fourchaume 2011 (1), from the Domaine Séguinot-Bordet. It’s only when you taste wine of this standard that you realise how luscious Chablis can be, compared with the alcoholic chalk dust sometimes sold under that name. Here flavoursome -plumpness is perfectly matched by the -flintiness that derives from the soil where the grapes are grown. It is basically billions of prehistoric crushed oyster shells. No -wonder great Chablis goes so well with seafood. Mark has knocked off £24 a case.
Meursault is one of the great names in Burgundy, and while £27.50 is a fair amount for a bottle of wine, this 2010 Les Charrons from Boyer-Martenot (2) is reduced by £4.50, and represents value you might not easily find elsewhere. The finest white Burgundies have mingled notes of peaches, hazelnuts and honey, plus a lovely evanescent, perfumed nose which makes the entire experience of drinking them a joy. It will improve for years.
Mark has reduced the price of the Rioja Reserva 1998 from the Bodegas Urbina (3) by £36 a case. Rioja can be thin and characterless, easily outgunned by the wines from the Duero. Not this. Fourteen years’ maturing have given it a depth and warmth and sheer power that would make it perfect not only for goose or turkey, but for Boxing Day leftovers, game dishes — well, almost anything. Frankly astonishing value at £14 a bottle.
Finally, a lovely red 2009 Beaune from Nuiton-Beaunoy (4), again reduced by £24 a case. This has all the bright, clear purity you find in the higher reaches of the Burgundy market, plus lovely berry flavours coupled with just a slight touch of earthiness. Down to £17.50 a bottle.
Burgundy is just beginning to start selling in the Far East. Get hold of yours now!
Delivery as ever is free, and there is a tasting case including three of each wine.
Prices include VAT and delivery on the British mainland. Payment should be made either by cheque with the order, payable to The Wine Company, or by debit or credit card, details of which may be telephoned or faxed. This offer, which is subject to availability, closes on 28 December 2012.