Substrata Wines exists to source delicious, innovative & challenging wines.
We buy from small, independent producers who make wine in sympathy with their environment, with particular emphasis on chemical-free farming.
We promote low intervention winemaking: wine made with a minimum of additives and manipulation.
Substrata Wine is owned and operated by us - Benjamin & Thomas Loudon. We set up the business upon our return to England after a sabbatical in 2018, where we volunteered on organic and biodynamic vineyards in Australasia, (and escaped the 'Beast from the East'. We began as a Norwich based local retailer and events company. During the pandemic we started shipping some wines direct from small independent growers.
Wine is a source of great pleasure for us. We don’t buy wines to fit a price point; we only buy wines we enjoy drinking, and we think your customers will enjoy drinking them too.
We source distinctive wines from independent producers, who grow their own grapes, and so have an active investment in the long term health of their land. They avoid using chemicals sprays or fertilisers, and make their wine with a minimum of processing in the winery. The wines are bottled by the producer at source, meaning that the wine reaches you as the producer intended.
In wine, as in life, one size does not fit all, and though we favour dry farming, hand harvesting and indigenous yeasts, we have faith in the integrity and the decision making of our producers, and we think this is repaid in the quality and stability of the wines listed below.
We are keen to establish symbiotic relationships with other quality focussed food and wine outlets who want to champion small independent businesses, at a time when changes in UK importation is encouraging intensive farming and bulk shipping.
Substrata Wines (London Only) Catalogue
Dry orange field blend from old, ungrafted vines - primarily Pedro Ximénez, Roussanne and Riesling. We get notes of pink grapefruit, apricot and black pepper.
Soft and light unfiltered red, made from roughly equal parts of Cinsault and Grenache, the fruit sourced from Smallfry's old, ungrafted, biodynamic vineyard in Vine Vale, Barossa. We get notes of cherry and almond.
Tthe lighter end of Barossa Valley reds. Harvested early, to keep the natural acidity higher, the wine fresher and the abv lower (11%). Made from Cinsault sourced from Smallfry's old, ungrafted biodynamic vineyard in Vine Vale, Barossa. This is packed full of crunchy red fruit.
Made from 100% old vine, ungrafted, biodynamic Grenache. Fresh, vibrant and juicy, its brimful of blackberry and blueberry fruit flavours. With minimal tannins, it can be enjoyed lightly chilled and is all too easy to drink, belying its 14% abv... the sting in the Jellyfish's tail, perhaps...
Though new to the region, Aglianico is a variety well suited to the Barossa, as it is drought resistant and ripens after the much-planted Shiraz. Intriguing flavours abound here - bitter herbs, orange rind, a hint of Campari. A memorable red from Izway's off-grid winery, the only one in the Barossa.
Hand harvested, off-dry field blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier and Petit Manseng from a biodynamic producer in Marlborough - the only one in New Zealand to use heavy horses in their vineyard. Powerfully aromatic, with notes of ripe mango and passionfruit, and a slightly oily texture. A revitalising sipper, or perfect with spicy food.
Dry rosé, made from roughly equal parts Syrah and Grenache, with a sprinkling of Cinsault, from the schist soils of a dry-farmed and biodynamic estate in Saint-Chinian, near to Béziers. Notes of white flowers, apricots and redcurrants; this is no powder puff pink, as battonage has added texture, making it suitable for the dinner table as well as the back garden. Perfect with salmon.
Juicy and medium to full bodied Languedoc red from a dry farmed and biodynamic estate near to Béziers. 46% Syrah, 32% Carignan, 22% Grenache. Fermented in stainless steel, and matured in tank for 12 months prior to bottling. The Corteza is the entry level red from the estate, released young and ready to drink. Notes of juicy plum and cherry, with hints of garrigues herbs - thyme and oregano.
Calling this the estate’s ‘second’ wine does it a disservice, as it’s drinking beautifully now (and has another few years of evolution ahead). A blend of 60% Syrah, 25% Grenache and 15% Carignan. Aged in large French and Austrian oak casks, this is a full bodied but supple and deeply fruity red, with notes of garrigue herbs - fennel and sage. Some definite salinity here, too - hints of lobster shells.
The estate's top wine, made in the second year of organic conversion. Made from 75% Syrah and 25% Grenache, and aged in new Austrian oak to give the breadth and texture of barrel-ageing, without the overt oak flavours. Without irrigation, the vines yield just 12 hectolitres per hectare - tiny volumes, but wonderful fruit quality. This is deep, dark, dense and meaty. The fruit is developing, with notes of dried fig and prune; the tannins have softened, but there is serious structure here, alongside Garrigue notes of lavender and thyme. Drink now - or over the next ten years.