Thursday, 29 October 2015
Bottle Apostle disciple
Bottle Apostle is an independent chain in London now numbering 5 shops in different areas. It has been on our radar for some time and we have bought some nice and interesting bottles there in the past. Now they have opened their latest branch near us in Primrose Hill, we took the opportunity to check it it out and were astounded at the amount of really interesting wine (and beer) they have in a relatively small space (compared to a Majestic branch for example).
They opened their first shop only in 2009 since when they have won a lot of awards including the
Telegraph Magazine “Britain's Best Small Wine Shop” in 2011 after only a short time of trading, "Small Independent Merchant of the Year" in 2012 by the International Wine Challenge, and “London Merchant of the Year” in 2014.
On the day we paid our visit there were two extremely knowledgeable members of staff, one from the Czech Republic and one from Japan who was presiding over a Sake tasting.
To give an idea of the range of wines on offer, we counted over 150 varieties listed on their search engine. Admittedly these included some minor constituents in blends including white port which tends to be made from some really obscure varieties but we think this is wonderfully diverse for a limited stock.
On this subject Bottle Apostle charmingly lists a wine's grape variety under 'We're not sure'.
Among the more recherche items we found a Blauer Wildbacher/Zweigelt blend from Strohmeier (Red Wine No. 5, 2012), a wine so rare that Bottle Apostle have the entire UK allocation.
Also, the amazingly elusive Ruschi Noceti range (see our post appetizingly entitled 'Looking Up A Dead Goat's Arse'),
Abadia de Gomariz's Brancellao/Ferrol/Mencia/Souson blend from Ribeiro. These last two co-incided with our recent obsession with the wines of 'A lost corner of Tuscany' and 'The least Spanish region of Spain' (q.v.).
There were also not one but two Petite Arvines,
an enticing Penedes blend of Garnatxa Blanca/Macabeu/Moscatell/Panse/ Parallada/Vinyater and Xerel-lo at only 10% (VN Vinel-lo Blanco 2014) and many more. Who has ever heard of Vinyater? Not 'Wine Grapes' but Galet has. He offers the information that there are only 13ha of Vinyater in Spain.
We have indeed become Bottle Apostle Disciples. Do take a look and see if you don't as well.