(2022) Sourced from several South Australian wine-growing regions, this is made with wild fermentation and lees ageing. Very attractive Viognier aromatics, lightly floral and herbal, which gives an attractive edge to the more ripe and tropical fruit. The wild yeast ferment no doubt adding to the quite complex aromatics for a £7.50 wine. In the mouth it is quite oily-textured and weighty, and there is a sour lemony acid that drives the mid-palate and finish. That gives a savoury character, quite orangy, the sweet peach fruit just balanced on the mid-palate.
(2022) Gamay from vineyards in the south of Burgundy and Beaujolais, weighing in with a hefty 14% alcohol. It has a fragrant cherry fruit nose, something a little firm too, like graphite or perhaps a twiggy briar character. The palate has that firm edge too, perhaps the alcohol adding to the slightly firmer nature. For me, the charm of the fruit on the nose just lacks a little on the palate, but especially with food, that structural element comes into its own.
(2022) What a seductively moreish Pinot this is. Pale to medium colour, there's lots of custardy, creamy oak, but matched by a depth of ripe red berries and undertow of truffle and autumnal forest floor. Spices too. In the mouth it is medium-bodied and quite creamy and rich, but retains plenty of sappy, briary character, good cherry-ripe acidity, and a very fine, firm tannin structure. A really lovely wine this from a great year, and the best Cloudy Bay Marlborough Pinot to date in my opinion. Watch the video for more information.
(2022) Made from old vines in the cool and foggy, coastal Casablanca Valley, this has an expressive nose of lychee and rose petals, very aromatic and floral, there's a geranium leaf nuance too. In the mouth, the wine is just off-dry, but it is textured and spicy, exotic and smoky, a terrific rendition of Gewurz that finishes with intense orange peel acidity and zest. Watch the video for more information and food-matching ideas. £7.99 in Scotland and on Majestic's 'mixed six' deal.
(2022) The Criolla grapes of South America are ancestors of the grapes originally introduced by Spanish and other European settlers. This is a lovely expression, relatively pale and translucent in colour, with soft, Pinot-like autumnal aromas, then bright red fruit on the palate, but with an earthy and leafy softness that is attractively mellow and highly quaffable.
(2022) Fans of Whispering Angel will notice a slightly more gastronomic, mineral and meaty character here, Esclans cuvées from this point up seeing some barrrel fermention, of Grenache, Cinsault and Vermentino. Peachy-pink, this is in some ways a sweet spot on price and quality for the whole, impressive range: intense, concentrated peach fruit, but with a keen raspberry edge of mouth-watering tartness, minerals and a touch of savoury tannin into a long, shimmering finish.
(2022) 100% Grenache, this Languedoc pink is Provençal in style, pale and with a delicate peach and blossom aroma. There's a welcome hint of salty minerality too. In the mouth well-balanced and quite substantial: the fruit has a tart edge which is quite gastronomic against some juicier nectarine and the acidity is fine, again hinting at that touch of saline character. £8.99 on a mixed-six deal.
(2022) Coral pink, this Grenache and Cinsault wine is a Vin de France, grapes coming from regions of the South of France. There's a light earthiness to the nose, which is actually quite refreshing among so many cool-ferment fruit bombs. In the mouth a bit of sweetness, red fruits and a fair share of lemon acid towards the finish which does balance. £7.99 mixed-six price.
(2022) Mostly Grenache with Syrah, fruit comes from vineyards at 300-400m altitude, planted on clay and limestone soils. Pale and pretty in colour, there's an aromatic quality to this, a hint of passion fruit and small, sweet red berries. Punchy on the palate, plenty of zing and verve between raspberry fruit and its fine line of acidity. At time of review £5.50 discount to £11.99 on one of Majestic's scarcely realistic 'mix six' deals, oy by the bottle in Scotland. That price is good value - £17.49 less so.
(2022) This relatively pale, peachy-coured wine is from the Chilean outpost of New Zealand's Mud House. It is an unusual blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, small red berries on the nose not showing too much Sauvignon character, though there is a definite zip to the palate that cuts across the ripe berry fruits.