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by Tom Cannavan, 06/12

Winedeal is a UK-based company, but part of a leading European supplier of quality wines with sister companies in Holland, France, Belgium, Germany and Denmark. This, they say, gives them the benefits of a local business but with the buying power of a multi-national company. Delivery is charged at £5.99 per order and is free for orders above £120. Winedeal's buyers take advantage of over-supplies, buying parcels of wines that are offered at discounts to their regular prices. They say "The quality of the wine is high, but so is volume. Our buyers therefore really negotiate on a price, without ever compromising their high standards."

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the wines

wine labels Ondarre, Rioja Reserva 2005, Spain
From an excellent year, this blend of mostly Tempranillo with a little Graciano spent 16 months in French and American oak barrels. There's a very attractive tobacco and Sandalwood spice lift on the nose that is fresh and modern, backed up as it is by cool, ripe, blackcurrant and Morello cherry fruit. In the mouth this has plenty of oaky spice and grilled bacon-fat smokiness, but it retains that liquorice-tinged tight black fruit. Juicy and nicely alive into the spicy, but fresh finish. 89/100. £14.99,

Gran Maestro, Amarone della Valpolicella 2009, Italy
With its vivid, deep crimson colour and 15% ABV this blend of Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara made from partially dried grapes is typically Amarone. Violets, hints of rose and all sorts of liquorice and ashy, curranty dried fruits on the nose lead on to powerful palate that has a hint of chocolaty richness, plenty of coffee-like depth and bittersweetness, but a core of ripe, intense black fruit. It has a juiciness that squirts through the big tannins and density of the finish, and is crying out for a big plate of hearty, slow-braised meat or maybe meatballs in a rich tomato sauce. 90/100. £25.99,

Morello, Barolo 2008, Italy
This has a soft and light-rimmed colour and a nicely expressive nose showing some lighter, floral and cherry scents. On the palate it is not hugely complex, but it is authentic with some wild strawberry and raspberry freshness, hints of tarry spice and nicely balanced tannins and acidity. A very nice Barolo in the lighter, simpler style that should nevertheless age quite gracefully. 89/100. Available as part of the six-bottle "Italian Essentials" mixed selection for £99.00,

Dante Alighieri, Brunello di Montalcino 2005, Italy
A little bit of age is obvious in the colour of this Sangiovese, which has a briary, damp woodland note to the aroma, some tobacco and quite discreet cherry-scented fruit. On the palate the sweetness and concentration of the fruit surprises, with tightly-defined tannins and a juicy red fruit tartness, a touch of tobacco and spice lingering into the finish. An enjoyable and balanced Brunello di Montalcino, in a food-friendly, lighter-bodied style. 89/100. £27.99,

Burton's, Vintage Port 1982, Portugal
There is a lot of sediment in this 31-year-old Port, so make sure you decant it well before serving, ideally strained through muslin - or indeed an unbleached coffee filter paper. The effort will be worth it because the aromas from this old wine are immediately beguiling, with chocolate and deep, prune and date compote notes, hints of anise and other spices and touches of smoky, swirling tobacco. In the mouth it has full sweetness, the spirit nicely balanced by ripe, creamy red fruits, more of that chocolate character and fig, date and raisin intensity. A lovely wine with a long, long finish. 92/100. £36.99,

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