(2017) This organic-certified Chardonnay comes from the Mâconnais in southern Burgundy and is made for Corney & Barrow by the family domaine of Dominique Cornin. It has a correct, appealing nose, marrying lemon and peach, with the slightest undertow of almond or nougat. The palate has plenty of zip, a tropical almost mango-like juiciness moving through to the fresh squeezed lemon of the finish, medium bodied and of very fine quality.
(2017) Made for C&B by the illustrious J-P Moueix of Pomerol, intriguingly the suggestion is that this is the perfect match for Murgh Tikka Makhani - a choice that surprised me, though I can see the logic in a wine with power and a bit of real grip that might well take on curry. Mostly Merlot, pencil-shaving notes over plum fruit, before a firm palate, the dark-toned fruit has a bit of bittersweetness, and the acidity gives the cut rather than the tannins which are sandy but not dominant.
(2017) Made on the island of Sardinia from Bovale (aka the Spanish variety Graciano) this packs 14% alcohol and has a dark colour, and a nose reminding me of roasted chestnuts, plum and soy, before a palate where ripe, sweet cherry fruit leads the way, before spices, a herby-woody note and the heft of the alcohol and grippy, fairly dry rustic tannin kicks in. Most certainly a food wine, it has a delicious authenticity,
(2017) From Lazio, and the DOC of Roma which was created only in 2011, this is an unoaked white from the Malvasia variety and the Frascati-based house of Principe Pallavicini. Immediately juicy and fresh, lots of orchard fruits and a nice little suggestion of waxy citrus rind and melon skin. In the mouth it is really quite sweet. I am not sure if there is residual sugar or just the sweetness of ripe grapes, but it is soon joined by a salty lick of acidity to leave this tangy and positively seaside-fresh in the finish.
(2017) Charton-Vachet is a new Burgundy name to me, based in Nuits-St-Georges and farming organically and using natural yeasts and minimal sulphur. This Bourgogne has a lovey tart/dry cherry nose, a briary background but really about the fruit that seems pert and clean, and most attractive. In the mouth it delivers cool, elegant Pinosity, the fruit alert and charming, orange and tart cherry, the tannins dry and fine and the whole picture balanced, elegant and delicious. The milk chocolate designed to match is flavoured with coffee, cherry and nibs of cacao. Though the acidity of this wine was a touch prominent in the opening seconds when tasting both together, the sweetness of the Pinot fruit against the coffee was then lovely, and the crunch of the nibs release more little counterbalancing bittersweet notes.
(2017) A Pinot from the Languedoc, this has certainly retained freshness and edge in the heat of the south, with only 12.5% alcohol and a crisp, herb and red fruit nose. It's a Pinot in an authentically light- to medium-bodied style, fragrant and staying crisp and refreshing. The antithesis of 'blockbuster', but lovely of it's style.
(2017) I see from my database that I have notes for the 2005, 2006 and 2007 vintages of this wine from Clarence Dillon Wines, making it part of the Haut-Brion family stable, so interesting to taste this latest release. It's a typical white Bordeaux blend of Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle, the nose clear and brightly focused, with citrus and a touch of riper red apple, maybe even peach, and a light mealiness. Medium bodied, this has a grapefruit and lemon grip, a bit of real steel at the core, draped with taut fruit, the slight chalkiness of the acids giving lovely gastronomic potential.
(2017) A Riserva that spent 15 months ageing in oak barriques, followed by the same period in bottle, this is all Sangiovese and seems immediately polished and classy with its taut graphite and black fruit nose, touches of aromatic tobacco and yet all very focused. In the mouth there's an almost surprising weight and density of fruit - so full and rich after the lean suggestion of the nose, expansive in fruit and tannins, a cherry pit dryiness to the acidity and then that wisp of smoke and tobacco curls into the finish which is long, the mineral and graphite polish asserting. What a terrific Chianti for drinking now, or cellaring.
(2017) A blend of Grenache blanc, Marsanne, Viognier and Bourboulenc, the nose here is surprisingly delicate, just a touch of white flowers to zesty citrus and apple skins. In the mouth it has the texture and acid grip of so many white Rhône blends, a juicy but taut and pithy lemon character, just a touch of Viognier peachiness softening the edges a touch.
(2017) Though Bindi Segrardi's Chianti Classico Riserva 2014 is a stunner, I really enjoyed the herbal, lighter character of this wine sourced from Bindi Segrardi's vineyards across the Chianti region. The nose has rhubarb, beetroot and basil, giving that vegetal, herby edge to the light tobacco and cherry fruit. On the palate it is medium bodied, with a nice silky texture, and plenty of sweet fruit is underpinned by a roughening edge of tannin, pert acidity and more of that herby character. A classic style, and please watch the video for more information and food matching ideas.