Vignalta (Italy, Veneto) Colli Euganei Pinot Bianco 1997 – £11.99
Pale straw gold colour. This has good fruit- very clean limpid pear, apple and melon. Palate is clean and quite powerful. There’s plenty of ripe pear fruit, though also an intriguing salts and mineral element. Maybe lacks a little length, but good.
Domaine Cordier (Burgundy) Pouilly-Loché 1998 – £12.49
Light, pale gold. Quite a sweet, confected nose at first. Fine, sweet pear and ripe ogen melon nose and a little buttery richness. On the palate this maintains that ripeness and hint of sweetness and is clean and nicely fruited. Very good, if not terribly profound.
Jayer-Gilles (Burgundy) Hautes-Côtes de Beaune 1997 – £14.99
Pale/medium crimson. Lovely nose, lots of roasted mocha coffee and richly earthy fruit. Hints of berries and spice. On the palate there is great richness again, with a lovely softness to the fruit, and good balance with a little tannic bite and palate refreshing acidity. Forward and very nicely textured, this is a really attractive wine for drinking now or over 3 to 5 years.
The Unison (New Zealand) Selection 1998 – £15.99
Vivid, dark crimson colour. The nose displays an attractive coffee and charcoal oakiness over ripe, sweet black fruit. Quite thick and tarry, but with a core of pure blackcurrant, maybe just a hint of olive and leafiness. Palate is nicely fruited too; dusty tannins and balanced acidity over chocolate, plum and blackcurrant. Quite long but still a little awkward, this should come together nicely over 5 years or more. Impressive.
Coffele (Italy) Recioto di Soave “le Sponde” 1998 – £13.99
I’m a sucker for good Recioto white wines, and this did not let me down. Pale gold in colour, fascinating aromatics with notes of almond, pear-drops, honey, little hints of candied lemon peel and syrup. Beautifully sweet and poised, with honeyed pear fruit. Rich and smooth, there are little tropical nuances hinting at pineapple and sweet mango. Finishes long, pure, glassy and well-balanced. Excellent.