Wines of the World Cup: Seven of the best

It’s time for kick off. The opening match of the 2019 Rugby World Cup gets underway on Friday 20 September as nations from all across the globe compete for the famous Webb Ellis Cup in Japan.

Before the tournament gets in full swing, our sommelier, Mario Garcia Alegre has selected his favourite wines from seven of the best wine-making nations competing this year. From the picturesque region of Burgundy, France to the Andean vineyards in the stunning Uco Valley in western Argentina, there are some delicious varieties and strong contenders.

If you’re more interested in the wine-making capabilities of the countries playing in the World Cup as opposed to their rugby skills, all of Mario’s selections are available at The Amicable Society of Lazy Ballerinas by the glass, or if you’re feeling indulgent, by the bottle.

See what Mario had to say about his selections below.


England – Hattingley Valley Classic Reserve

“An eco-friendly winery located in Hampshire produces this fantastic English sparkling wine. That’s right, England does produce some excellent wine. It has vibrant baked apple, creamy nougat and brioche notes on the nose, supported by a hint of toast and fresh red fruit with soft notes of lemon sherbet on the palate. You’d be forgiven for thinking it was made in Champagne, but then it would be much more expensive! It’s also vegan.”

£10 a glass, £53 bottle


New Zealand – Yealands State, Sauvignon Blanc

“Just as well-known as the rugby team, we love the Kiwi’s Sauvignon Blanc. This fresh wine bring notes of guava, fresh herbs and a bright citrus on the palate. It’s also excellent to drink it on its own as an aperitif.”

£9.50 a glass, £38 bottle

USA – MacMurray, Pinot Gris

“The US is definitely better known for its wines than its rugby. This unusual off-dry Russian River Valley Pinot Gris has an expressive, perfumed nose and offers layered aromas of white flowers, pear and quince paste. White peach, ginger and dried fig notes appear on the palate, where a rich mouthfeel softens refreshing acidity. This wine is fantastic paired with our Monte Enebro goat cheese.”

£11.50 a glass, £51 bottle


France – Domaine de Vauroux, Chablis

“Chablis has to be one of the most famous in the Burgundy region. This is an amazing Chardonnay with clean mineral notes and hints of citrus. The palate is medium bodied with crisp, apple acidity, pure fruit flavours of white peach and pears, finished with a classic, steely, dry finish. A very stylish ​wine indeed.”

£14.50 a glass, £61.50 bottle

Australia – MadFish Pinot Noir

“Like the national rugby team, this wine is a strong contender. The succulent Pinot Noir has aromas of rose, cherry and spice. Expect vibrant cherry fruit with underlying savoury mushroom and eucalyptus notes. It has a silky texture, a fine thread of acidity and soft tannins. A perfect companion at any time of the day.”

£8.75 a glass, £35 bottle

Italy – Chianti Colli Senesi DOC

“A genuine Sangiovese blend from Tuscany. The profound cherry fruit is mixed with a lot of mocha and liquorice and balsamic violet flowers fill the nose. This wine is juicy and powerful, yet refreshingly light and has good structure and dense body. A wine that brings a lot of quality for a good price.”

£9.75 a glass, £42.50 bottle

Argentina – Trapiche Estacion 1883 Malbec

“A trendy wine from one of the genius winemakers in Argentina, Daniel Pi. This Malbec from Tunuyan in Mendoza offers up aromas of fresh red fruits and violets with mineral notes. Expect intense cherry aromas with black pepper notes, rounded off with a long and elegant finish. My favourite for this year’s World Cup…. the wine, that is!”

£38 bottle

Please note Lazy Ballerinas only accepts bookings for lunch. Evenings are walk-in only.

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