Eyrie Original Vines Pinot Noir 2016

Eyrie Original Vines Pinot Noir 2016, Dundee Hills, Oregon 14% (£80-90, Savage Selection) This was a lockdown wine to remember. And remember we did, because we only had about 100ml of the stuff (whole bottles tend to interfere with memory, we find). That's because this wine was part of...

Exquisite Collection Organic Malbec 2019

Exquisite Collection Organic Argentinian Malbec 2019, 13.5% (£6.99, Aldi) This juicy, fresh, easy-going red will give a lot of drinking pleasure. It’s worlds away from the body-builder reds that have fallen out of fashion in Argentina lately. This is upbeat, friendly stuff that also happens to be organic....

Neyen Malbec 2016

Neyen Malbec 2016, 13%, Apalta, Chile (c £50) I wasn’t supposed to taste this wine. The producer was supposed to send another wine. But somehow it was this very particular Malbec – just one of 762 bottles made – that ended up being despatched. Serendipity, I guess you’d call...

Clusel Roch Traboules 2017

Clusel Roch Traboules 2017, Coteaux Lyonnais, France (£12.67, Justerini & Brooks) Clusel Roch is an excellent producer best known for its excellent northern Rhône reds, including some delicious Côte Rôties.  This Traboules is an intriguing and utterly delicious oddity. It's from the south of the little-known Lyonnais appellation, not...

Sidewood Isabella rosé 2014

Sidewood Isabella rosé 2014, Adelaide Hills, Australia (£21 or AUS$32, www.sidewood.com.au) Owen Inglis’s Sidewood Estate in Australia’s Adelaide Hills is a new discovery for us.  Although the estate produces both still wines and ciders, it was the current releases of Sidewood’s sparkling wines that we were recently sent...

Frappato Syrah Terre Siciliane 2018

Passo Mastro Frappato Syrah Terre Siciliane 2018, 14%, Italy (£6.99, Lidl, *from 21st November 2019) This cheery, upbeat Italian red is a blend of Frappato with Syrah from Sicily. It was one of the better value wines on show among the 30-odd Lidl wines at this tasting – though...

Saint Veran Trouillet 2018

Saint Veran Domaine Trouillet 2018, France, 13.5% (£17.99 or £15.99 when you ‘mix six’, Majestic) Majestic Wine has been through a pretty rocky patch of late and it’s left most of us wondering what exactly is happening with one of the country’s favourite wine retailers. The company first...

Rabl Gruner Veltliner 2018

Rabl Grüner Veltliner 2018, Kamptal, Austria, 12% (£9.50, Marks & Spencer) There was a time when the Grüner Veltliner grape variety was touted as the next big thing that was going to take over the wine world. It hasn’t really happened. Notwithstanding, it’s still a great grape to get...

Maury 1928 Solera

Maury Solera 1928 Cask 849, Les Vignerons de Maury, 17%, France (£19.95 for 50cl, Berry Bros & Rudd) The day after Kantar published research indicating a third of Brits wouldn’t countenance paying more than a fiver for a bottle of wine, I popped into Berry Bros &...

Ventoux 2017 Remy Ferbras

Ventoux 2017 Rémy Ferbras, France, 14% (£8.79, Waitrose) How’s about this, then? A mini Châteauneuf-du-Pape under a tenner. A fine way to warm the cockles and delight the taste buds during the winter season ahead. It’s a blend of mainly Grenache with 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, grown on...

Chateau Tayet 2015 magnum

Château Tayet Cuvée Prestige Bordeaux Supérieur 2015, France (£38.50, Private Cellar) Last week saw The Bunch’s annual tasting at which Private Cellar (new to the group) showed this magnum of Château Tayet. It's a blend of 55% Merlot with 25% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Petit Verdot, described as...

Bin 003 Ribolla Gialla 2018

Bin #003 Ribolla Gialla 2018, Italy, 12.5% (£9.50, The Wine Society) This is the third edition of the Wine Society’s new experimental ‘Bin’ range dedicated to quirky varieties and wines and it’s the most successful to date. Ribolla Gialla is an ancient but little known white variety grown...

Vasse Felix Filius Chardonnay 2016

Vasse Felix Filius Chardonnay 2016, 13%, Australia (£13, Booths) Based in the north of England, Booths is known for its wine range and rightly so. Based on the supermarket’s recent tasting in September 2019, the wine range shows strength and depth, with some particular high points in the...

Salicornia Dao Reserva 2016

Salicornia Dão Reserva 2016, 13%, Portugal (£6.99, Aldi) This was my pick of the bunch from a recent Aldi tasting (Sept 2019). As the nights draw in and we all start to crave characterful, comforting reds to sink into, this one ticks all the boxes.  It’s Portuguese (made from...

Blackbook Clayhill Chardonnay 2017

Blackwood Clayhill Chardonnay 2017, 11.5%, England (£18.50, blackbookwinery.com) This is a wine that gets us excited - for many reasons. Firstly, it's made from Chardonnay.  We're aware that may be problematic for those many people traumatised by soupy, sickly, revolting Chardonnays of the past. But this isn't just any...

Louis Guntrum Pinot Noir 2017

Louis Guntrum Pinot Noir 2017, 13.5%, Rheinhessen, Germany (£13.99 down to £10.49 until 16.7.2019, Waitrose Cellar) Is Pinot Noir the wine lover's ultimate grape?  And, if so, where do you find great value bottles of the same? A short while ago, I posed these questions on social media.  In answer...

Roebuck Estates Classic Cuvée 2014

Roebuck Estates Classic Cuvée 2014, 12%, Sussex, UK (Enquiries via website) One of the wonderful things about working in wine is the potential for making new discoveries. Roebuck Estates is my most recent. Until mid-June, I hadn’t heard of Roebuck. It was only after chairing the WineGB Awards...