October Wines

Wine recommendations with Antoinette Milne - Wine for life learning

It’s October and autumn is creeping in. Leafy breezes and cool morning starts are par for the course. With Halloween around the corner, we’ve got two very spooky orange wines to try. Don’t miss out on the Gros Manseng white wine and El Vinculo Crianza red wine either, as both are perfect foils to the autumn season!

M&S WINES – GROS MANSENG 2020 £9.00 (Cotes de Gascogne IGP, France) *Vegan

Gros Manseng is a local grape variety that thrives in the Gascony region. Often used in blends with other grape varieties, here, it comes into its own. It’s dry with zesty fresh citrus and peach fruit flavours along with lively acidity. If you like Sauvignon Blanc, there’s a good chance you will enjoy this too. Quite a versatile wine, it will pair up nicely with seafood and lightly spiced dishes. Or enjoy a glass just like that!


*Low sulphur, Organic, Vegan

Here is an orange wine to try if you haven’t had one just yet. An orange wine is considered to be a white wine that has had contact with or been fermented on its skins (which are normally removed for white wines whereas red wines are fermented with skins). This tends to give the wine more colour, texture, flavour and richness than you might otherwise expect.

El Troyano is made from Verdejo grapes in clay amphora and large French oak vats. There are refreshing aromas of peach, orange and red fruits such as rhubarb, and it is savoury with some vanilla and spice. Why not try on its own or with grilled salmon or grilled chicken?


(Krems, Austria) *Vegan, Vegetarian Fresh and vibrant with flavours of stone fruit such as peach, citrus, spicy ginger and white pepper. It’s quite versatile so try it on its own or with aromatic dishes such as Thai food.

FINE WINES DIRECT UK – EL VINCULO CRIANZA 2017 £13.49 (Mix 12) (La Mancha, Spain)

El Vinculo is one of the four Bodegas of Alejandro Fernandez’s wine legacy and part of the Grupo Pesquera. Alejandro is considered to be the “King of Tempranillo” and is considered to be amongst one of the finest winemakers in the world. El Vinculo is made of 100% Tempranillo grapes from old vines. The vines are situated at altitude which gives freshness to this wine and balances the intensity. It has spent 24 months in American oak barrels. Unfiltered and unfined means that it retains all of its flavours and structure. A concentrated and rich wine with ripe dark fruits, spicy cedar oak and a persistent, intense finish. Perfect with barbecued, roasted or grilled red meat and game dishes. Believe it when I say, this is a steal at £13.49.



1. IN CLASS WSET Level 1 Award in Wines Qualification (1 day including exam): £145.00

Saturday November 20th from 9:00am to 4:00pm at Fine Wines Direct UK (242 Penarth Road, Cardiff, CF11 8TU)

2. IN CLASS WSET Level 2 Award in Wines Qualification (4 days including exam): £345.00

i) Saturday October 16th

ii) Saturday October 23rd

iii) Saturday October 30th

iv) Saturday November 6th (exam) *From 10:00am to 4:00pm at Fine Wines Direct UK, Cardi

3. WSET Level 3 Award in Wines qualification: (10 sessions including exam)

i) Saturdays January 22nd and 29th, 2022 and

ii) Saturdays February 5th, 12th, 19th, 26th and

iii) Saturdays March 5th, 12th, 19th and

iv) Saturdays April 23th (exam) *10:00am to 4:00pm at Fine Wines Direct UK, Cardiff

Please email antoinette@wineforlifelearning.co.uk for details.Top of FormBottom of Form

WINE FOR LIFE LEARNING is a dynamic Approved Programme Provider of the Wine & Spirit Education Trust and runs WSET qualifications in Swansea, Cardiff, all over Wales and Southwest England. Gift vouchers for the wine courses make ideal gifts. To see details please go to www.wineforlifelearning.co.uk.

*Prices and vintages correct at the time of print








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