(2018) Nosiola is a native grape of Trentino in the far north of Italy, often harvested late to make sweet Vin Santo wine. But here Bottega Vinai (a brand of the super-coop of the area, Cavit) has made a crisp, fresh and dry Nosiola with broad appeal. The variety takes its name from nocciola, the Italian word for hazelnut, the grape said to have a nutty flavour, and indeed, there is a nuttiness here, as well as firm pear and gentle spices, before the palate reveals its bright, focused and juicy fruit, licked with salts and finishing with a dry lime peel lick of precise acidity. A lovely grown-up wine that has broad sipping and food-matching appeal. Watch the video for more information and food matching ideas.
(2018) From winemaker Hervé Fabré, who has spent decades making Malbec in Argentina before buying this estate in Cahors, in his French homeland. It's a wine that has soaked up its oak barrel-ageing effortlessly, the nose dominated by blueberry and cassis, a dark black plum edge, and lovely notes of Malbec's more floral and feminine side too, elegant, peppery and gently lifted. Like its little brother, the Mission de Picpus, the super-fruity, peachy edge to the palate is delightful, here set against much more substantial tannins, darker, more savoury fruit, and good acid structure, suggesting this will age well for a decade or more.
(2018) It's an interesting 'back to his roots' story for French winemaker Hervé Fabre, synonymous with Malbec from Argentina where has made wine for over 30 years, including his well-known Viñalba label. He has recently taken over an estate in Cahors, the European home of Malbec, and the first two wines from it are now being stocked by the retailer Roberson, an excellent Cahors destined to age labeled Prieuré De Cénac, and this more approachable wine that retails for £5 less. It's a wine that expresses that lovely Malbec 'lift' very well, violet, cassis and even some fragrant peach notes, before a palate that carries through some of that peach juice-edged character in the crisp black fruit, grippy, but fine Cahors tannins and juicy and fresh acidity. Watch the video for more information and food-matching ideas. On offer at £11.99 at time of review.
(2018) A terrific Assyrtiko from the island of Santorini, brimming not just with ozone and saline tang of the sea, but a delicate blossom and lightly herbal character, fresh pea-shoots and lime leaves too. In the mouth it is super-tangy and fresh, riven by its mineral and lemon juice squeeze of acidity, but stone fruits and grapefruit, a fabulous intensity flesh out the mid-palate and give this immense shellfish and seafood appeal, or oily fish and octopus perhaps.
(2018) Though labelled as an IGT Toscana, most of the grapes for this Sangiovese come from Romitorio's own vineyards in the Scansano region of the coastal Maremma. Its a big, warm-hearted Sangiovese that opens with lightly herbaceous notes of earth and twigs, that briary character joined by sweet plum and cherry fruit. In the mouth it is firm and dry, the tannins giving lots of grip, keen cherry-pit dry acidity too adding to the savoury, food-friendly appeal. If it sees oak it must only be in older, larger barrels, as this maintains an edge of sappy freshness and core of fruit through to a dry, nutty finish. Watch the video for more information and food matching ideas, and note that Daily Drinker club members can buy this wine for £11.70
(2018) This wine was the ultimate winner of the Global Pinot Grigio Masters Awards 2018. No, I never knew such awards existed either. It comes from family-owned Slovenian winery, Puklavec, and was vinified in Slavonian oak barrels. It is, I have to say, an excellent Pinot Grigio, brimming with lightly nutty and smoky, but burstingly ripe fruit, before a palate where beautiful nectarine sweet juiciness meets a cool, icy river water clarity. There is texture and slippery weight in the mouth, but dazzling freshness too in this flavour- and personality-packed example. Watch the video for more information and food matching ideas.
(2018) From the same vineyards as 'Pure' this elegantly packaged, pale wine is also a similar blend so presumably a selection of the better plots or tanks. There's a delightful icing sugar-dusted confectionery character, fruity and fresh, with a hint of raspberry and small whitecurrants. In the mouth it's pretty much bone dry again, and once more has that saline lick to the lemony acidity, the fruit quite savoury but hinting at peach and rosy red apple. Handsomely packaged, it's another lovely and delicate wine.
(2018) From the Judean Hills in Israel, a kosher wine made from 100% Cabernet Franc grown at 650 metres altitude. A pale- to medium salmon pink, the nose here is lovely, crammed with crushed rasperberry and redcurrant, rose-hip and tiny floral notes. In the mouth it is bursting with fruit, a peachy sweetness cut by a tang of grapefruit to the acidity. Long and beautifully tangy and fresh. No UK stockist for this 2017 vintage at time of review, so stockist for an earlier vintage shown.
(2018) This rosé is a 'Vin de France', so the Merlot fruit could have come from anywhere, presumably at least some from Bordeaux where the Rothschild brands are based. It has plenty of warming red berries, a fashionably pale colour and a gentle touch of honeysuckle. I found the acidity just a little lemony and tart for my personal rosé taste.
(2018) Composed of 67% Grenache, along with 30% Mourvèdre and 3% Viognier, this rosé comes from vineyards around the Yatir forest in the Judean Hills, and is a kosher wine. Fairly deep pink in colour, aromas are quite delicate, a touch of cherry bubble-gum, then a drier, lightly earthy and small red berry fruit. Very nice fruit in the mouth, with that dry juiciness of cranberries, a hint of sweetness, and a long finish. Rather expensive compared to some better value wines here, but very good. £22.49 if bought by the case.