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Three bottles of wine from 1774 are to be auctioned later in the month

Three bottles of wine by Anatoile Vercel from 1774 when Napolean Bonaparte was a boy are to be auctioned later in the month
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Three bottles of wine from 1774 are to be auctioned later in the month.
Old wines come up for auction from time to time, but a wine from 1774 is rare let alone three bottles of it. The three Jura wines were vinified & cellared by Anatoile Vercel at a time when Napolean Bonaparte was still a young boy, the United States of America was an English colony & the French Revolution was still over the horizon.

The wines come from France's Jura region and are being advertised as 244 year old Vin Jaune. However Jura expert Wink Lorch notes that these wines are not Vin Jaune as the term was not invented until the 19th Century, although the wine making technique was in use in the Jura back then.

In 1994 25 top sommeliers who had the chance to taste the wine, said it had “a lot of golden amber colour and mixture of flavours such as nuts, spices, cinnamon, vanilla and dried fruits still present”.

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Helix corks now available in the UK

Helix corks are now available in the UK being used by the South African winery Anthonij Rupert to seal its Protea wine range.
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We reported back in 2013 that a helix-shaped cork that screws into special bottles was being developed. These unusual corks are now being used as a closure for wine made by South African winery Anthonij Rupert to seal its Protea wine range, imported into the UK by Berry Bros and Rudd. The cork is being made by Portuguese cork producer Amorim.

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Asda discounts Champagne and Prosecco to add the Markle Sparkle to fizz sales.

Asda own label Champagne is being discounted to £12 a bottle while their Prosecco is being offered at £5.
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Asda discounts Champagne and Prosecco to add the Markle Sparkle to fizz sales for the coming nuptials.

Just when you thought that the deep discounting of Champagne was a thing of the past, Asda breaks ranks and is offering a Markle Sparkle for those celebrating the Royal wedding this weekend.

Asda own label Champagne is being discounted to £12 a bottle while their Prosecco is being offered at just £5.

Since supermarkets have stopped offering deep discounts for Champagne in the last two years, the volume of the French fizz has fallen, down by 3 million bottles in 2016. Compared to 2015’s 309 million bottles, 2017 saw a small growth vs 2016, to 307.3 million bottles, still off the peak, as many people are now enjoying Prosecco in the UK instead of budget Champagne.

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Australia over takes France into second place with the second highest average export bottle price

Australian wine sales, particularly to China, have been booming in the 1st Quarter of 2018. The boom has seen Australia’s average export bottle price rise to £3.70 ahead of France at £3.03.
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Australian wine sales, particularly to China, have been booming in the 1st Quarter of 2018.

Imports from Australia to China have grown by more than 50% by volume and value and, while still behind France's £202 million, are closing in at £148 million.

The boom has seen Australia’s average export bottle price (before tax) rise to £3.70 ahead of Frances average export price of £3.03. Both are below New Zealand’s average of £5.80 before tax.

The rise of exports to China has been attributed to the trade deal done between Australia and China. Currently, duties on Australian wine to China are at 2.4%.

But China has threatened the EU with tit for tat tariffs increases after the EU levied heavy tariffs reaching 48% in August on subsidised solar panels.

It is not known what the possible tariff could be, but starting on the 2nd April 2018, China has added an additional 15% on American wines bring the total tariff on US wines to 67.7%.

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Prepare to enjoy more Argentine Malbec

Argentina is set to increase wine sales to the UK as its Peso drops in value, making the wines cheaper.
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Argentina is set to increase wine sales to the UK as its Peso drops in value, making the wines cheaper.

The country's Peso has been falling steadily over the year, but this week Argentina went to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for Aid to avoid a crisis. This saw a big drop in the Peso. On the 1st January 2018, 1 GB Pound bought 25.1 peso. Today it is 30.8 peso to the GBP, equating to a fall in its value of 19% and almost 39% in the last calendar year.

As always, the maxim here at ThirtyFifty is, the wine you will drink in 6 months time is the country whose currency has fallen the most. Mendoza here we come.

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Plumpton college has launched an A Level in Viticulture

Plumpton College, the UK's leading wine education institution, has launched the equivalent of an A Level, known as the “The Advanced Technical Certificate in Viticulture”.
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Plumpton College, the UK's leading wine education institution, has launched the equivalent of an A Level, known as the “The Advanced Technical Certificate in Viticulture”.

Aimed at 16-18 year olds it is a year long course with 2 days of study per week. Students on the course will learn how to use tractors and other vineyard equipment, skills such as pruning and trellising and the fundamentals of plant biology and disease protection.

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