Updated on Sunday 9th February in response to a deluge of emails from Telegraph readers asking for more half bottles please
On my way to a friend’s the other week, I called into Lea & Sandeman to buy a present. My eye was caught by a display of unusually delicious-looking half bottles. Hmm, I thought. The friend was not-drinking. I wasn’t not-drinking. I wanted just one glass of really good red wine (and then maybe one more). Unsupportively, I bought one of these (above) for myself. It cost £8.50, I think, and it was perfect – gorgeously grainy sangiovese. I thought that even if we’d both been drinking it would have been much more fun than twice as much wine for the same price. And it sparked my piece on the economics of half-bottles in this week’s Telegraph – here .
For those looking for more good half bottles, here’s a list. I will continue to update it:
Wine merchants offering good half-bottles of wine:
Specialises in the half bottle. Includes some good wines though not all the vintages are as fresh as I’d like – 2011 looks a bit old for a Villa Maria NZ sauvignon blanc for example
Tanners of Shrewsbury
Wide range, including even smaller bottles and André Dezat Sancerre 2012
Ranges from the very serviceable Chat-en-Oeuf wines, both white and red, to champagne to Sauternes.
The Wine Society
Relatively large choice, including their own-label claret; a jurançon blanc; a soave Pieropan; riesling and pinot blanc from Trimbach and the very good Domaine Mallory & Benjamin Talmard Mâcon Villages 2012 and some particularly tasty sherries
22 on the list here, particularly strong on the Rhone – think Gigondas Domaine Saint Gayan, Domaine Maby Lirac. The one I’d be snapping up is the superb Domaine Teiller Menetou Salon 2012 – perfect Loire sauvignon blanc, and just enough in a half to share a crisp aperitif.