These might be wines that have been reviewed during the month on wine-pages, or have appeared in my magazine column or TV show, or they may be wines from a recent tasting that hasn’t yet been written-up in a full-length report.
under six pounds
Señorio del Aguila, Gran Reserva Cariñena 2001, Spain
Composed of 60% Tempranillo, 20% Garnacha and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and aged in oak barrels for 2 years (70% French and 30% American) this has a classical nose, beautifully pitched with some cedar and pencil-shaving finesse, tobacco and warm, spicy autumnal fruit. The palate has more of the same, but some elegant brightenss in the finish. 87/100. A real bargain at £5.99 until end of October 2011 (down from £7.49) in Majestic.
under a tenner
Iona, Sauvignon Blanc 2010, South Africa
From the very cool, apple-growing Elgin Valley, Iona is one of the best producers and their Sauvgnon Blanc consistently shows fantastic intensity, but mineral purity and precision too. This has herbal and gooseberry punch and vivacity, but it has a great steeliness too, the palate showcasing plenty of sweet, ripe fruit, but all draped around a fabulous core of mouth-watering acidity. 91/100. £9.99 on offer at Majestic until end of October 2011 (normally £12.49), or £10.99 in Waitrose (N.B. rumour has it that one of Waitrose’s 25% off all wines promotions will kick off mid October 2011).
Domaine de la Boissonneuse, Chablis 2008, France
The Boissonneuse vineyard is tended organically by Julien Brocard (son of Marc Brocard). This has very fine notes of minerals and salts joining classic lemon and crunchy apple aromas. The palate has quite a full, concentrated charcter: this is a Chablis with real bite and real intensity, that sea-shell lick of saltiness very obvious in the long, long finish. 92/100. £13.95, The Wine Society.
sky’s the limit
Henri Boillot, Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2006, France
Boillot’s 2006 is fabulously rich and smoky, with a ripe, sweet fruit and a fantastically oily, hazelnut quality. Masses of fruit here. The oak is still dominant on the nose, but not on the palate where fine, fat lemon fruit is riven with steely, mineral acidity. Long and concentrated and very young. Super-expensive stuff yes, but absolutely thrilling white Burgundy. 95/100.