Tom Cannavan picks four of the best wines tasted last month, in four different price bands.
cheap ‘n cheerful
Asda, Wine Atlas Marzemino 2013, Trentino, Italy
As the weather heats up there’s a need for lighter red wines that taste even better when lightly chilled with just 10 minutes or so in the fridge. Here’s a nice little red that’s eminently suitable for serving cool and so perfect from summer. It comes from Trentino in the north of Italy, and is made from the local Marzemino grape. It has a soaring cherry fragrance and a sappy freshness, before delivering more of the same on the palate with a juicy, sweet cherry middle and touches of herbs and chocolate adding light and shade. Watch the Wine of the Week video for my full review of this wine and for food-matching suggestions. 86/100. £5.97, Asda.
under a tenner
Bodegas Juan Gil, ‘4 Meses’ Monastrell 2014, Jumilla, Spain
Juan Gil always delivers great value for money, and there’s no exception here in a wine made from 40-year-old vines and aged in oak for four months. It has a vivid purple density and is immediately intense and concentrated, both deeply plummy and brightly jammy, the palate splendid with its lip-smacking acidity and tannin. Finishing with touches of spice and chocolate, it’s a big, bold and impressive red at the price. 88/100. £8.95, Great Grog, see all stockists on wine-searcher
Chivite, Finca de Villatuerta Chardonnay 2012, Navarra, Spain
This Chardonnay comes from the 500-600m altitude vineyards pf Chivite in Navarra and is fermented partly in stainless steel and partly in French oak barrels (2nd and 3rd use). It is made by Bordeaux white wine superstar Denis Dubourdieu. A lovely cool nose of schist, river stones, flint and complex sulphides, with a fabulously punchy palate, loads of fruit, loads of tangy Seville orange and lime acidity, long and really rather superb in a Chablis mould. Unfortunately it is in only six branches of Waitrose, but it is available from their online store too. 92/100. £14.99, Waitrose.
sky’s the limit
Champagne Krug, Vintage 2000, Champagne, France
A couple of weeks ago, at Gleneagles hotel, Olivier Krug unveiled the newest 2000 vintage of the rare Krug Clos d’Ambonnay single vineyard Champagne. It was astonishingly good, but its £2,000 per bottle price tag might be just a smidgeon too much for most, so how about this for a relative bargain? The regular 2000 vintage Krug has a wonderful freshness and a subtle, tight character, with biscuit and brioche, but a delightful floral and soft herb quality giving layered complexity. Fabulous orange and lime sweetness and intensity on the palate, real mid-palate concentration and weight. The cream and gentle almond richness rounds out the finish, the salt and minerals and the juice of the lime acidity into the finish is marvellous, in a wine that has obvious cellaring potential for a decade and more – probably much more. 97/100. Around £180, see all stockists on wine-searcher