(2022) I loved the 2020 vintage of this wine and made it my Wine of the Week, but this 2021 ramps up the zing and intensity to a remarkable new level. From the Adriatic coast and vineyards in the foothills of the Apennine mountains, cool conditions and a 55-year-old vineyard combine to make a wine of tremendous natural concentration. The theoretical cross of a peach, lime and mandarin orange, it bursts across the palate with such verve, with a pink grapefruit tang of zesty acidity flowing through the finish. Fabulous stuff.
(2022) A Provence-esque rosé from the nearby Languedoc, this is made from 60% Grenache and 40% Cinsault. Perhaps the most striking aspect, however, is its elegant, frosted glass bottle. Its delicate and yet flavourful, raspberry and cherry lips fruit aromas lead on to a palate that balances a bit of red berry depth with peachy lusciousness, and then a lemon rind suggestion of firm waxiness to the acidity. Available by the six-bottle case at £12.67 per bottle equivalent, it's a keen price too. Watch the video for more information.
(2022) Around 65% Able clone in this vintage, more than in other years, as one block - Block F - suffered in the cool summer and did not produce the quality of fruit required. Aromatic like the A2, more cinammon and clove notes here perhaps, but a similar bowl of exotic spices, flowers and bold and succulent red fruits. There is maybe an extra layer of depth here - not exactly depth but a dark compote character, creamy and almost like a spiced plum pudding. Once again, there is a base of espresso and that hessian quality that is savoury. Very firm fruit on the palate, edged by liquorice and a depth of dark plum skins giving grip that the charming A2 doesn't quite possess. This is a structured Pinot, built for ageing I'd say, with a more rugged overall character, but the balance of taut tannins, acid and that brooding depth of fruit all in place. Price quoted below is per bottle equivalent when buying a case of 6 or 12.
(2022) Matelica is a DOC in the Marche region of Italy, specifically for the Verdicchio grape variety. On the Adriatic coast east of Tuscany, vineyards are set among the Apennine mountains, ensuring cool conditions and significant diurnal temperature shift. Here, Stefano Zoli hand-crafts this wine from a 55-year-old vineyard, five months on the lees adding a yeasty, lightly bready and salty aspect to the aroma which is otherwise pristine with lemon and yellow apple fruit. There's a surprising intensity and fruit sweetness on the palate, quite a rich texture too from that lees ageing. Orange and pink grapefruit dominate the flavours, with delicate but insistent acidity. A delightful wine of considerable length. Available by the six-bottle case priced £86 in-bond. Approximate per bottle price quoted.
(2022) From the Cadillac region of Entre-Deux-Mers, this 2016 is majority Merlot. It is worthy of note that Patrick Leon (ex-technical director of Mouton-Rothschild 1984-2004) was consultant here from the family’s first vintage in 2007 and, apparently, he twice tried to buy the property. It is a plush and svelte Bordeaux, with a graphite edge to plum and blackcurrant on the nose. There's a cool sense of elegance and controlled power on the palate: the fruit remains plush and deep, but it is so savoury, the tight, fine-grained tannins and keen edge of juicy acidity giving precision. The edges are barely blurred by softening coffee-ish oak, as crisp acids and bittersweet fruit lingers on the finish. £250 per dozen, in-bond. Approximate per-bottle price quoted.