DiscoverVin™ is a wine importation and distribution company, sourcing wines from the South West of France.
The company started with three people passionate about wine and food, who live in the heart of the wonderful food and wine region in the north east of Victoria, Australia. And whilst being surrounded by fantastic cuisine and Australian wines, they also greatly appreciate the varieties, style and differences that the southern French wines offer .... and of course the French cuisine!
It was whilst living in the south west of France in 2009, that they discovered the many affordable, good value for money wines available that have never made it to Australian shores. Their DiscoverVin website provides information on regions and varieties, it provides clues on how to 'de-mystify' French wines and offers affordable good quality wines.

This blog brings together their passions for food and wine, and gives updates on restaurants and events in the south west of France, and in places closer to home. Please enjoy! And if you enjoy this blog you may well enjoy their website:

Click here to order wines…

24 January 2015

DiscoverVin Top 10 wines of 2014

Here is a look at our most popular wines of 2014. 

It makes for some interesting reading, none the least for the prominence of rosé. 

For the second year in succession two rosé wines have made the top 10! Once considered sweet and uninteresting, dry rosé certainly appears to be making a resurgence in Australia as it is in Europe. In France in 2013 rosé sales exceeded white wine sales for the first time. Similarly we appear to be in the middle of a rosé revolution ! If you have never had a French rosé we suggest that you try one of these wines.

Here are the first 5 of our top 10 wines for 2014. We will blog about wines 6-10 next week!

1. Chateau de La Bouyere Bordeaux Blanc 2013 $22.50

chateau de la bouyere bottle shot
We are thrilled to see this lovely easy drinking white wine making the it to the top of our list again in 2014 as it did in 2013. 

It has struck a chord as a good value easy going alternative to NZ savvy blanc. It was a big hit when served cold and crisp on a hot week-end at the Paris to Provence Festival in Melbourne in November. Sommeliers are reporting customers coming in and asking for "that" French white they had last time.

Its a stylish wine. A blend of semillon and sauvignon blanc.  Crisp and refreshing, perfect on its own , with nibbles or with salads or seafood and can stand the heat in spicy Asian dishes. Great value. No wonder its flying!

If you would like to see some of the technical details or grab a case, click here

domaine roche audran bottle shot

Number 3 last year and just short of number one this year. 

The name says it all.  Irresisitible!  An irresistible rosé from Provence, the home of rosé.

Domaine de La Croix, created in 1882, has an outlook to the beaches of St Tropez. It has the classification of cru class. Very few Provençal producers are given the cru classé classification, denoting an exceptional winery.
In 2011 Vigneron magazine named this as one of the three best producers in Provence.

For more information in general on rosé and its rising popularity here's a link to an article on rosé that we wrote for French Living magazine in January 2014. 

For more technical details or to place an order click here.

3. Domaine Roche-Audran Cotes du Rhone rouge 2012 $25.90
domaine roche audran bottle shot

From a biodynamic producer on the Cotes du Rhone. A delicious grenache/shiraz which is excellent value for money for the quality of this artisanal wine. It was cited in the 2015 Guide Hachette- France's premier wine guide!

Domaine Roche-Audran has been following biodynamic practises since 2006. It is situated on 3 separate sites on the Cotes du Rhone and uses vines between 35 and 100 years old. Vincent Rochette has developed a growing reputation for producing quality wines of character.

70% Grenache, 15% Carignan, 15% Syrah

For more technical information or to place an order click here

4. Chateau La Rayre Bergerac Rose 2013 $26.50
chateau la rayre bergerac rose bottle shot

Wow! A second rose in the top 10 for 2014. 

This rosé seems to appeal to wine lovers who say they "don't like rosé" once tried they love it!

It is darker in colour and has more body than other styles of rosé (this is achieved by a pressing of the skins with the juice which otherwise would be clear). It has a loyal following with many repeat customers.

Try some and you will see what all the hype about rosé (and in particular French rosé) is all about. 

More details can be found here .

5. Domaine Bellegarde Cuvée Tradition Jurançon Moelleux 2012 

The sweet wines of Jurançon are amongst the great sweet/dessert wines of the world. They are great value for money compared to dessert wines from other regions. This is an excellent example- luscious complex fruit, balance, length and not too sweet on the finish. We are so happy to see a desert wine make our top 5 wines of the year!

Gorgeous late picked dessert wine and "sensational value for money" Winsor Dobbin. Domaine Bellegarde is a certified organic producer. It received 17 points by Jancis Robinson and featured in her "Top-tip whites and fortifieds" December 2014.

Available in 375ml for $28 or 750 ml for $35.90

For more information on this amazing wine, click here.

Thanks to all of you who purchased wine from us in 2014. Thank you for coming on our adventure to find interesting and good value wines from France!

Prices shown reflect our online price. Trade prices on application: 0260 206 016 or

Next week we will write about the rest of our top 10- five more interesting, authentic and good value wines!

3 January 2015

Chateau Laroche Joubert 2011. An example, par excellence, of a good value wine from Bordeaux

One of our favourite red wines at the moment is Chateau Laroche Joubert 2011.

We sent a sample to our friends at The Wine Wankers, one of the wine blog/social media sensations of 2014. They have over 120k twitter followers and are rated by Klout and others as one of the most influential in our industry. You can read about their amazing journey here.

This story about this wine review began when we met Conrad from The Wine Wankers at a trade tasting in November 2014.

A photo posted by discovervinwines (@discovervinwines) on

He challenged us to prove that good value wines existed in Bordeaux. So we showed him some wines at the tasting and then sent him a sample of this wine. We thought that this wine could help prove the point about good value wines and Bordeaux.

You can see for yourself what the team thought ...

Nice! We'd like to thank The Wine Wankers for trying the wine and for taking the time to let us know their thoughts. 

For more information on this (and other) good value wine from Bordeaux, click here

20 December 2014

Dont panic! Grab some gift certificates to redeem online!

Running out of time to get to the shops? 
We are here to help!

A DiscoverVin gift voucher is a fantastic gift for any wine loving family and friends.

Our gift vouchers are available in any amount you like and can be redeemed by the recipient online, or by phone, using an individualised code.

We can either email them to you or send directly to the recipient accompanied with an individualised message. 

Indeed these are always available and are suitable for Birthdays/Thankyou/Congratulations etc as well as Christmas.

So forget the traffic and the crowds, grab some gift certificates and relax and enjoy the festive season!
TO ORDER: Please call us on 02 6020 6016 or  0414 596 395 or send us an email . Tell us how much you want to spend, the message and we will be in touch to get payment details.

Our usual terms and conditions apply.

Seasons Greetings from all the team at DiscoverVin!

Terms & Conditions

12 December 2014

A tradition of unique grapes add flavor to South West vintages

Dave de Simone writes about wine for Trib Total media out of Pennslyvania in USA.
He recently wrote about the wines of South West France.  In the article he describes the wonderful food and wines of Gaillac and Fronton.  Two areas we love.

"Never heard of négrette, fer servadou, duras and gros manseng , let alone prunelart, ondenc and loin de l'œil ?
Not to worry.
These wine grapes represent just a smattering of more than 130 varieties scattered across the storied vineyards of South West France. The region's viticulture blossomed during the Roman era. In the Middle Ages, industrious monks produced wines to quench thirsty pilgrims traversing the region on the way to St. Jacques de Compostela in northwestern Spain.
Later, the tumultuous French Revolution, the devastating 19th-century phylloxera infestation and economically disruptive wars sorely challenged the region's wine culture. Through it all, generations of undaunted South West wine growers persevered and, somehow, preserved the region's unique traditions and wines. Today, a new, well-travelled and outward-looking generation of vignerons — and female vigneronnes — has emerged poised to share their diverse wines with a wider audience.
Faubourg 73, a charming, hip bistro in the town of Montauban, embodies the region's confident, vibrant spirit. With a musical backdrop ranging from the Doors' “Soul Kitchen” to Frank Sinatra's “Fly Me to the Moon,” engaging proprietor Pierre Cantagel efficiently serves “bistronomie” cuisine. The fun, laid-back approach incorporates fresh, local ingredients served in delicious small plates.
Thin slices of jambon noire de Bigorre — ham made from local black pigs — precede small cups of cream of pumpkin soup, mussels Basquaise with fresh chorizo sausage, Vietnamese venison eggrolls and braised duck pieces with caramelized shallot in a rich red wine sauce. Winegrower Frédéric Ribes matches each successive dish with whites and reds from Fronton, a 5,000-acre appellation making terrific wines seldom known in America.
Ribes, along with his brother Jean-Luc and the polyglot jack-of-all-trades Pierre Salama, specializes in négrette, a grape also known as folle noire (“crazy black”). The vines grow in Boulbènes, soils of silt and clay mixed with quartz and oxidized red stones called rougets .
Nearby Gaillac (pronounced guy-ack ) producers offer a glittering galaxy of dry sparklers, crisp, exotic whites, fruity rosés, earthy reds and luscious, sweet dessert wines. The Romans planted vineyards here as part of their Mediterranean Narbonne province. Monks at Abbey-Saint Michel solidified Gaillac's winemaking traditions and prosperity for centuries. English kings long preferred the wines.
Today, vibrant producers such as Domaine Plageoles, Domaine Causse Marines, and L'Enclos des Braves have embraced Gaillac's traditional varieties to export hand-crafted, attractively priced, terroir- driven wines.

Read more:
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

10 December 2014

Our Top 5 Christmas Wines

'Tis the season to be jolly! Here are our top 5 Christmas/New Year wine suggestions.

Gift Packs
Christmas is all about giving after all. We have some great gift packs ready to be sent. We can send to you or to the gift recipient. We can include a personalised note.

We also have individualised gift certificates at various price points that can be redeemed online.

Jump online or give Helen a call on 0260 206 016 for ideas.

Many of us look forward to a glass or two of bubbles with friends and family over Christmas. This one is fantastic. Its new to us and has had tremendous feed-back and sales. Its well-priced enough to pour a glass for your family (well maybe!) By the bottle its $54 or $49 in a six pack.

We are thrilled to see the rise and rise of dry rose. Rose sales now exceed white wine in France, and it has really taken off in Australia in the last 2 years. We have 2 lovely rose wines. We served them at the Paris to Provence Melbourne French Festival and sold out of both!

Chateau Rollan de By
This is a special wine that would go perfectly with turkey and ham and everything festive. It recently out scored the famous Chateau Margaux and Chateau Cheval Blanc (featured in the movie Sideways) in a blind tasting. Both these wines sell for >$1000 per bottle. This is $65. A special wine to enjoy over the holiday period. Limited stocks. Find it here.

Mixed packs
We have some great mixed packs at various price points with a mix of rose/whites/reds and dessert wines. Don't forget we can send to your holiday address. 

Some clever customers have done this in previous years and had a case of their favourites delivered to their holiday accommodation/agents. Brilliant! Click here to buy.

Courier deadlines are approaching so please jump on line and order ASAP.

Whatever you are doing this holiday season, eat and drink well but drink responsibly.

6 December 2014

Classic French food and wine matches at Christmas

Figaro magazine in France this week published an article on the classic wine and food matches of a traditional  French Christmas meal. 
It gave some common-sense insights into the classic matching of French wines and Christmas dishes. These rules also apply in Australia, whether you are serving French wines or not!
It said "The golden rule of successful and easy matches, consists of choosing wines that discretely flatter the dishes, but never eclipse them." (Well we are pretty sure that's what the article- in French- said!)
For an entrée of smoked salmon they suggest "a lively and dry white wine such as a Sancerre or Muscadet."  
From our portfolio we would suggest a Bordeaux Blanc (unwooded semillon sauvignon blanc) such as the incredibly good value Chateau Beycheville 2012 (91 points Mike Frost $24.50) or Chateau Haut-Peyrous 2010 (from the famous Darroze family, $46.20) if you want a special white wine to start.

The French traditionally have a foie gras dish at Christmas. The classic match for that, as suggested by Figaro is a sweet white such as Sauternes, Coteax-du-Layon, Jurançon or a Monbazillac. 
Foie gras is not something we often do in Australia at Christmas time. Recently at the Paris to Provence Melbourne French Festival, the french expats though were lining up to buy bottles of Domaine Bellegarde Cuvée Tradition 2012 from Jurançon ($35.90) and Domaine de l'Ancienne Cure (Monbazillac) 2005 ($50) to have with paté/foie gras at Christmas. If you like Sauternes we have one from Chateau Rolland a small family producer,named by the "10 best list" in the top 10 best value Bordeaux ($68.50).  So if you want to do as the French do, or you are looking for a wine match for pates or terrines over the holiday season these wines have an absolute wow factor! 
According to Le Figaro, oysters, "because of their iodine content and slight "nuttiness" need more acidic white wines like Entre-deux-Mers or Champagne".
We have 2 perfect partners for seafood in that instance: Chateau de la Bouyère Blanc 2013 from the Entre deux Mers region of Bordeaux, an unwooded sauvignon blanc/semillon blend, and our fabulous award winning Achille Princier Grande Tradition NV Champagne ($54) This champagne has been getting a great reaction since we started selling it recently. 

Figaro suggests Champagne for seafood, crab, scallops, lobster, prawns and the Achille Princier would be perfect! (Currently available at great price in a six-pack!)

Main Courses

According to Figaro, the main courses are the chance to drink the grand wines of Burgundy or good vintages of Bordeaux! 
DiscoverVin can certainly help you out there with a range of Bordeaux that are special, have some age and are ready to enjoy but won't break the bank!  Current favourites include Chateau Lannesan 2004 (91 points Gary Walsh, $48) , Chateau Rollan de By 2006 ($65) and Chateau Moulin Pey-labrie 2006 ($49.50)
Specifically Figaro suggests matching a stuffed turkey with Chateauneuf-du-Pape, a Pomerol or a Saint Emilion. 
We don't have a Chateauneuf-du-Pape but we have a wonderful wine from nearby in the southern Rhone that has been likened by many to a good Chateauneuf-du-Pape. It's from a biodynamic producer: Domaine Roche Audran Cuvée César 2011 ($35.90). Pure fruit driven blackberry and raspberry 100% old vine Grenache loveliness- one of our current best sellers. 

We have some great Pomerol Chateau Dassault 2006 ($95) and some wonderful Saint Émilion from bargain level Chateau Truquet 2011 ($31) to the wonderful Petit Figeac 2007 ($85) from the famous Figeac estate, and to what Parker called "hedonistic" grand cru Chateau Dassault 2006 ($99). 

Cheese and dessert

For cheese a late harvest ("vendanges tardives") is suggested. 
We have an excellent vendanges tardives from Producteurs Plaimont in Madiran called St Albert Pacherenc du Vic Bilh 2009 ($41.50). This a great wine, named best import by Huon Hooke. This is from the excellent 2009 harvest, picked just before the first snowfalls and is a fabulous match with a cheese platter.  

With chocolate Figaro suggests a fortified wines such as port or a rich dessert wine! 
We suggest a Rutherglen muscat or a rich dessert wine such as the lusciously sweet Domaine de l'Ancienne Cure Extase 2005 ($50) from Monbazillac. A rich botrytis affected wine. Very French and a wonderful way to finish a memorable meal. 

We are sure these wines will flatter your Christmas dishes!

Click on the links to see more information on the wines or to order.

We also have Christmas/mixed packs ready to go at various price points.

Whatever you are eating this Christmas we hope that you eat and drink well!  

3 December 2014

Discover a New Tradition

The perfect wine to accompany summer fruit has arrived. Domaine Bellegarde, Cuvée Tradition, Jurançon Moelleux has luscious complex fruit, balance and length.  The finish is not too sweet, making it an elegant and gorgeously structured wine.

DiscoverVin have just taken delivery of the 2012 vintage of what has been one of our most popular dessert style wines.

Jancis Robinson gave it a very good score of 17 points and featured it on her "tip-top whites and fortifieds". December 5th 2014..."Not much nose but fabulous balance of tang, acidity and sweetness. A perfect sweet wine for foie gras? So direct and revitalising. Exceptional value for a full 75-cl bottle although half bottles are also available".

The sweet wines of Jurançon are amongst the great sweet/dessert wines of the world and great value for money. This is an excellent example and the 375ml bottle is ideal to serve to complete summer meals.

Cuvée Tradition is made from Manseng grapes. This wine uses 65% Gros Manseng and 35% Petit Manseng.

The wines are not botrytised, in fact it is said that the thick skin of the manseng grapes protects against rot.  A long dry autumn allows the wines to dry on the vine and concentrate flavours. Fermentation and vinification occurs in oak barrels for the Petit Manseng, which gives an added complexity. The Gros Manseng is fermented and vinified in stainless steel.

Jurançon is a beautiful, hilly area in the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains in the south west of France.  The snow capped mountains can be seen from the vineyards and winery at Domaine Bellegarde, which is one of the best producers in the area.  It is a family estate with 14 hectares of vineyards.  They use organic practices and combine modern technology while maintaining the traditions of past generations.

Our tasting notes: Shiny gold/yellow colour. On the nose complex citrus and peach tones. The balance is excellent, complex citrus and stone fruits. Moelleux means sweet but unlike many dessert wines from Australia this wine has a drier finish. They can be consumed on their own (often the French would have them as an aperitif) with pate, cheeses and it is absolutely delicious with fruit desserts.

27 November 2014

Tour de Gendres Cuveé des Conti, Le Classique, Bergerac Rouge

Tour des Gendres, Le Classique, Bergerac Rouge, 2012 is a velvety, approachable Merlot from the appellation of Bergerac. It is ideal for drinking now.

Known as the “Prince of Bergerac”, Luc de Conti has gained a reputation as a leading French wine maker. Working with his brother Jean and his cousin Francis, they produce biodynamic wines that concentrate on fruit, balance, power and freshness.

Driven by passion as much as by perfectionism, de Conti has introduced organic and biodynamic farming practices to the family domain. He is pragmatic about working with the appellation’s historic grape varieties and doesn’t hesitate to sacrifice vines at the altar of ‘terroir’ and quality.
Certified fully organic in 2005, the estate’s approach was very much a family-orientated decision.

Tour des Gendres, Le Classique, Bergerac Rouge, 2012 is available online for $26.00
The wine is a Bordeaux blend with 60% Merlot and 40% Malbec.
Our tasting notes: Deep garnet colour with purplish tints. The wine
reveals slightly spicy notes of raspberry and cherry on the nose. This
wine is crunchy and chunky on the palate, sweet yet fresh and crisp.

26 November 2014

DiscoverVin - looking for everything unmodern.

Luc de Conti, winemaker at Château Tour des Gendres in the Bergerac appellation in South West France is emphatic about the natural evolution of his biodynamic wines. “We’re looking for everything unmodern” ("On cherche l'anti vin moderne par excellence"), he says. When asked to describe his wines in one phrase de Conti said “Wines that follow the heart more and more, and Parker less and less”.

DiscoverVin has released of two Château Tour des Gendres wines. Known as the “Prince of Bergerac”, De Conti has gained a reputation as a leading French wine maker. Working with his brother Jean and his cousin Francis, they produce biodynamic wines that concentrate on fruit, balance, power and freshness.

The wines are an ideal fit with DiscoverVin’s wine portfolio. Our portfolio places emphasis on independent wine makers and grape growers that typically adhere to the practice of meticulous hand nurturing from vineyard to bottle.

Driven by passion as much as by perfectionism, de Conti has introduced organic and biodynamic farming practices to the family domain. He is pragmatic about working with the appellation’s historic grape varieties and doesn’t hesitate to sacrifice vines at the altar of ‘terroir’ and quality.
Certified fully organic in 2005, the estate’s approach was very much a family-orientated decision. Authenticity and excellence are the buzzwords that he lives by and produces in his wines.

And according to Jancis Robinson MW: “A handful of producers such a Luc de Conti at Château Tours des Gendres ...are now producing ambitious wines to rival some of Bordeaux’s smartest offerings.”

The white wine, Cuvée des Conti, Bergerac Blanc 2013, is a fresh Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc/Muscadelle blend made using biodynamic principles. It is an excellent expression of ripe Semillon that offers a superb aromatic complexity, combining roundness and vivacity in the mouth. 

And the red wine Tour des Gendres, Le Classique, Bergerac Rouge, 2012 is a velvety, approachable Merlot, ideal for drinking now.

18 November 2014

White Wine and Cheese - The Wine Gang recommend some South West whites

Homage au Fromage, by Jane Parkinson

It might seem controversial to die-hard red wine fans, but the modern school of thought among those in-the-know is that white wine is a much better all-round wine partner for cheese.
Why? Because its inherent freshness cuts through cheese’s fatty content much better than a chewy red wine would. And so perhaps it’s one of the wine world’s best-kept secrets that South West France – with all its indigenous and delicious white grape varieties to offer – is in fact a Mecca for cheese-friendly wines. So let’s dive in.
White cheeses that are chalky in texture and/or salty in flavour, like goat’s cheese and halloumi, are notorious for working wonders with Sauvignon Blanc. But this isn’t an exclusive pairing by any means, so for something slightly different but just as successful a match, try the dry white wines of Gaillac, which are made from punchy native grapes such as Mauzac and Loin de l’Oeil and are tongue-tingling, crisp, fruity and salty. Sometimes these whites even have a drop of Sauvignon Blanc blended into them too,.
Crumbly cheeses, such as feta, Wensleydale and Caerphilly are also best served with a fruity and fresh white wine. To match these, it’s worth buying a bottle of dry white wine from Côtes de Gascogne. Local grapes here such as Ugni Blanc, Gros Manseng and Colombard (as well as Sauvignon Blanc sometimes too) make fruity, slightly textured white wines with bags of apple-flavoured freshness.

Comté sliceRicher, Alpine-based cheeses, such as Comté and Gruyère, as well as Spain’s most famous sheep cheese Manchego, are crying out for wines with plenty of depth to the flavour all the while being tense with freshness. And so step forward the white wines from the Basque region of Irouléguy, or even the dry Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh wines. These really make the most of indigenous varieties such as Gros Manseng, Arrufiac and Petit Courbu by being zingy, sometimes smoky, and full of nutty and herbaceous flavours.
These wines would also serve a richly-flavoured Cheddar well, but if you’re interested in tracking down something unique, go for a Chardonnay from the Pyrenean region of Ariège which can have a lovely nutty and waxy flavour.
chabichou du poitou squareAs we all know, sweet wines are hedonistic in their own right, but even more so when paired with two types of cheese styles; salty blue cheese such as Roquefort, Stilton or Gorgonzola, and washed rind powerfully-flavoured cheeses like Munster or Epoisses. There are two no-brainer places to look in South West France to meet your wine needs here. Firstly the sweet Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh wines, often made with Petit Manseng and Gros Manseng, they’re full of luscious honey and apricot flavours. Or else go to Gaillac and indulge in their delicious honeycomb and marmalade-rich sweet wines.