July was a month of good news for London Cru. We successfully completed the bottling of our 2014 wines following our trip to France. Further positivity arrived in the form of news from our network of growers in Spain and Italy. As it stands, all of our 2015 fruit is healthy and exactly where we want it in terms of yield and expected pick date. In keeping with our desire to push the boundaries and experiment with new varieties, we embarked upon two further trips to find a late ripening white variety and an early ripening red. We approached this with an open mind, considering all manner of regions and varieties. We were initially keen to source some Grüner Veltliner from Austria, but following a few challenging harvests in consecutive years, this proved a fruitless (excuse the pun) endeavour.

Our spirits weren't dampened by this and we set about exploring the possibility of securing another late ripening white grape; Albariño. With a little help from contacts in Galicia, we were able to get around a table with Zarate, a biodynamic and organic producer in the area. After talking about our project, over an incredible seafood lunch with barrel-aged Albariño, they put us in contact with a local grower who showed us around their vineyard (above). Perfect aspect, a soil bed of decomposed granite and wonderfully expressive and aromatic grapes; it didn't take us long to shake hands on a price. Safe to say, we boarded the plane at Santiago de Compostela later that day excited at the prospect of working with a new variety that's stock is constantly rising among wine lovers.

Sadly, we didn't have the same luck on 'Project Pinot'. We took an exploratory trip to Slovenia to try and source this enigmatic grape, in Gavin's eyes; the holy grail. The region of Podravje certainly has potential, but unfortunately this time around, we weren't able to find any vineyards that were suitable for us. Yield, aspect and soil type were the deciding factors in putting our search for the elusive red variety on the back burner. For now....