​The Real Wine Fair and Real Wine Month 2024

​The Real Wine Fair and Real Wine Month 2024

Posted by EWWines on 17th May 2024

EWWines invested in a trip to London for our wine team to attend The Real Wine Fair in London recently. The Real Wine Fair is a two-day wine event celebrating artisan growers who work with minimal intervention in the vineyard and the winery, often with organic, biodynamic or “natural” methodology. This year, in 2024 over 170 growers and winemakers were pouring and presenting their wines in this sold-out event.

Now this might seem like a jolly, but focused tasting is in fact hard work.

Our aim; to meet as many growers as possible we currently list, to taste new vintages and new additions and look for new wines too delicious to not consider, that also represented real value and would make excellent addition to our 1200 plus range of quality still and sparkling wines.

Any new listings have big boots to fill indeed, we are a demanding Wine Merchant! We pride ourselves in being absolutely focused on quality and only the best will do for EWWines. We are assessing quality, price, availability, methods of viticulture and viniculture, importer supply chain and so much more with each wine we taste. This is what we do and supports our BCorp certification and passion for sharing brilliant wines at EWWines.

This blog will introduce a few of our favourite producers and hopefully share how careful and diligent we are when listing new wines or change vintage with a current listing.

Our celebration of Real Wine May means we have 16 natural wines from the real wine fair available to taste for free in store with our expert team to guide the tasting giving insight from producers and detail you can only know by tasting with the winemaker! There are multi-purchase promotions available, so we do hope that you come and explore these wines with us this May.

Now without further ado, a few of our favourite producers as promised!

Lost in a Field Frolic 2023

Pleased to say that our first stop at the fair was to taste the third vintage of the upcoming release of Frolic Lost in a Field 2023 Pet Nat. We learned about the vintage and mind-boggling recipe of 14 plus heritage vines involved and most importantly, the tasting. The third release of Lost in a Field, despite being incredibly young, was exceptional. More aromatic, more generous red fruits and bright gooseberry fruit and the most delicate of pink hues than the pre-release tasting of the 2022 vintage. Basically, a very good sign for the 2023 vintage. Look out for this at EWWines very soon, stocks will be limited so get in early to avoid disappointment! We have very limited stock remaining of the 2022 Frolic Lost in a Field if you would like to revisit the 2022 vintage as well.

Judith Beck

Next we tasted the incredible wines of Judith Beck. (We love her wines at EWWines!) 2023 has been another excellent vintage for her natural wines. The entire range was excellent, but we have found a new favourite. The Traminer 2023, a skin contact white wine spending just over 6 months with the skins of the aromatic grape Gewürztraminer which brings pithy texture and delicate spice to support the aromatics. This was so perfumed and enticing, full of rose petal, lychee, subtle fennel spices while being clean and pristine. We think this would be a fantastic foodie wine. We all agreed, it was a pleasure to taste these wines from the 2023 vintage of one of our favourite corners of Austria.

Craig Hawkins

It was a difficult task to taste Craig’s wines at the 2024 show - he had what seemed like a constant queue and for good reason! We began our second day with an early tasting which we shared with Judith Beck who had a similar idea!

Testalonga was started in 2008 by Craig & Carla Hawkins in Swartland, South Africa. Charles noted that “his wines just seem to be getting better with each vintage.” We loved them all but will be selecting our absolute favourites once we have compared notes to make a producer mixed case of our absolute favourites so do watch this space!

Our current Testalonga wines are available here. We particularly love The El Bandito ‘I am the Ninja’ Pet Nat made with grapes from old vine Chenin Blanc.

Mas Daumas Gassac

Mas de Daumas Gassac wines have reached the rare status of ‘cult wine’ that is only given to a limited number of exceptional estates in the world. There are few wineries on earth that one can point to as being responsible for creating revolutions, let alone in one in a country with as esteemed a wine tradition as France. Not bad after just 40 years of operation!

Considered as the ‘Only Grand Cru of the Midi’ (Hugh Johnson), ‘A Lafite in Languedoc’ (Gault & Millau), ‘one of the 10 best wines in the world’ (Michael Broadbent) or simply ‘exceptional’ (R. Parker), we eagerly anticipated tasting their wines and we were not disappointed. If you do not have this producer on your radar, we think you should! Their wines are stunning. We especially like the Mas de Daumas Gassac Blanc 2022 which is full of peachy stone fruit, bright citrus and honey flavour, complex and buttery texture and an aromatic delight to taste! We aim to host Mas Daumas Gassac for one of our producer supper evening tastings because they are so fantastic, watch this space!!

Domaine Breton

Hailing from the Loire, the Breton philosophy stems, in their own words, from a love of the land. The vineyards see ultra-intense organic care; no chemicals in the vineyard, yields are restricted and harvest by hand. They resist the use of Sulphur and produce “natural wines” which express the Loire very well.

This was a difficult producer to choose highlights from because again the wines were all tasting well, including a real treat of a 1989 Vouvray Demi Sec “Bois Guyon” which was like concentrated baked apples and honey yet still bright, fresh and floral. Stunning!!!

A standout was the NV Vouvray Brut “La Dilettante” delicious traditional method sparkling Chenin Blanc that is pure and pristine and also Bourgueil “La Dilettante”(available to taste through May at EWWines) and is Cabernet Franc at its most brilliant. Early bottled and Carbonic maceration and all about the pretty red fruits and herbaceous character of the variety and when served lightly chilled is the perfect summer red!

Thank you for all the producers we met and tasted with. This was the best Real Wine Fair yet and it would be impossible to highlight everyone and all the wines we enjoyed because this would be an exceptionally long blog!

Please do ask our wine team for more top picks when we next speak. Or if you were at the Real Wine Fair too, let us know your favourite wines. We love to share our findings and we hope you come and taste these wines for yourself during May at EWWines.