(2016) What a beautiful organic wine, with no added sulphur, from the always interesting Tulbagh region of South Africa. It has aromatic lift and an essential, ash and mineral brightness, and lovely red berry fruit. Bold and juicy, it has elegance to the tannins and the cherry-fresh acidity. Delightful.
(2016) Ok, hold on to your hats for this 17.5% abv monster. Made by the passito (partially dried grape) method, it has a massively sweet and deep aromatic with a cocoa richness to the plum, prune and cherry fruit. Super-sweet and textured, it is majestic stuff. How to judge it? Tough, as you'll need to like this style, but undeniably well done and for me delicious. - perhaps with chunks of Parmesan or mature cheddar?'
(2016) A big bold wine, loaded with fruit and extract, a deep sinewy mouthfeel and big tannins too. Bold, moreish and very impressive Grenache and Syrah blend from Vacqueyras next door to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, and surely structured to age well for several years.
(2016) I note that one of Vintage Roots' customers describes this as "enjoyably rustic," which is an excellent two-word summary. Vinous, cherry and red plum, medium bodied but good fruit and concentration. A fine little organic Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Merlot and Syrah blend, and très useful.
(2016) Not cheap, but very, very good, this has a big, bloody, ripe, truffle and game nose, with delicious depth and concentration, the mouth-filling mid-palate sweetness and the tannin grip of the finish giving this authority but not losing its innate sexiness. French oak ageing rounds the finish.
(2016) Sicily's Frappato usually delights and so it is with this light, fresh and buoyant red, a touch of ink and earth adding some seriousness, but it's about the wild strawberry lift and freshness. Dry on the palate, there is some intensity here, the finish showing a little more tannin and seriousness than some, but it remains joyous, buoyant and fruit-filled - just as it should be.
(2016) From Tupungato, and made from 100% organic grapes grown at 1,200 metres and aged in oak for 10 months, this is a powerful, concentrated wine with flinty, complex sulphide notes, some buttery weight and decisive fruit, the great palate concentration balanced between opulence and freshness. A fine Argentinean Chardonnay.
(2016) A favourite of mine in previous vintages, this zero dosage organic Franciacorta comes from a single vineyard and spends 60 months on the lees. It's a 50/50 blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, the base wine fermented and aged six months in barriques. Just delicious richness here despite the absence of sugar, the shimmering lemon acidity is superb, just vivacious and sparky, with supreme brightness, the ripeness of fruit balancing the acidity.
(2016) A natural wine with minimal sulphur, long skin contact and closed with a beer bottle-style crown cap. Clear, yellow colour, fresh orchard fruits, clean but not hugely aromatic, still a pleasing orange and sprightly Cox's pippin fruitiness. Long and tangy, this has plenty of crunch and zipping acidity, and is a fine alternative Sav Blanc from New Zealand.
(2016) A wine with no added sulphur from northeastern Spain, this has a fine herb and sharp apple nose. Lots of juicy pear on the palate and really intense, interesting flavours where exotic fruit like juicy nectarine marries to delicious thrust and freshness. 10% Chardonnay joins the Xarel.lo, and I wonder if that component saw a touch oak to add some creaminess?