(2021) Quite a distinctive peach tone to the colour of this certified organic rosé, a blend of Tannat, Pinenc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Small redcurrant aromas are joined by a little pomegranate, before a palate that is bone dry, again focused on those smaller red berries - redcurrants and raspberry - with plenty of pithy, sour orange and lemon acidity.
(2021) A successful Provence style this, from the Southwest of France using local varieties Pinenc and Tannat, as well as the two Cabernets. Small redcurrant fruits and orange on the nose, onto a palate that is limey and fresh, again a little firm red fruit character, but stylish and long, if arguably lacking the final energising shot of typical Provence acidity.
(2021) A 'Sélection de Grains Nobles', made from Botrytis-affected grapes which were hand-picked from vines averaging 40 years of age. A medium- to deep, lightly-burnished gold, the nose has mint and a little honey and glycerine note, lemony but quite subtle. The palate has a delicious hint of tobacco and saffron, lots of apricot and peach fruit and terrific acidity, a streaking and fresh lime juice finish, giving this great balance into a long finish as the sweetness persists. Price for a 50cl bottle.
(2021) A blend of fruit from the Taylor family's vineyards in the Clare Valley and from the Limestone Coast. There's a plummy character on the nose, a little wisp of something herby and lifted too. The full-on sweetness and chocolate density of the wine surprises as it hits the palate, a mocha coffee raft of black fruit flavours, super-ripe and mouth-filling. Plush is the word for this wine, with its creamy and generous tannins and acids, it's for immediate pleasure I'd say, as long as you like that uncompromisingly ripe and large-scaled style.
(2021) The name of this wine translates to 'Stony Hill', the grapes coming from the rockiest slopes on the Banfi estate in Tuscany. Currants and fresh red berries on the nose, little oak influence if any, just a touch of dusty green olive from the Cabernet component. Plenty of cherry-ripe sweetness on the palate, blackberries too, combining some fruit depth with fresher, lightly herbal notes. Plenty of creamy sweetness here with a sour tang of orange to the acidity.
(2021) A really nicely made Viognier this, from Viu Manent's Colchagua estate, 13.5% and well balanced. The nose offers precise pear and light peach fruit aromas, a hint of vanilla in there too. On the palate the fruit is ripe and sweet0edged, more peach and flirting with mango and tropical notes, but very good, dry, slightly salty lemon acidity pushes out the finish. Quite a concentrated style, but well done.
(2021) It's so easy to overlook the very familiar brands, on the basis that by their very nature they are consistent, so tasting vintage after vintage is a bit of a waste of time. Indeed I see from my database that the last vintage I reviewed of the Sauvignon Blanc from Oxford Landing was 2001. I don't recall it having only 10.5% alcohol, so without a doubt the recipe has changed in 20 years. It's a wine with very decent southern hemisphere Sauvignon characteristics, but is basically like quaffing lemonade: very light, passion fruit and tropical notes and a clean finish, but nothing by the way of texture or acidity to disrupt the quaffing picture. Though a very commercially 'constructed' commodity wine, it does a good job and with its low alcohol might just be a useful summer in the garden picnic or party standby. Watch the video for more information.
(2021) From the super-Cooperative cellar, CAVIT, a range-topping Pinot Grigio cropped very low (45hl/ha) from high altitude vines with an average age of 15- to 30-years. It's an elegant and yet concentrated wine, unoaked, and showing a distinct salts and minerals edge to ripe pear fruit - not pear drops, but fully ripe fruit. In the mouth it has texture and a little sense of grippiness, very dry, a nice bitter endive twist to the finish where good acidity also pushes through.
(2021) This blingy Prosecco comes in a metallic gold bottle, and while that may or may not appeal, I have to say the wine inside is a very nice, dry expression of a vintage-dated Prosecco. Extremely pale in colour, the mousse is foamy and fresh and the aromas are very summery: crisp pears and apples, but a little leafy, herbal hedgerow element too. In the mouth it is light and refreshing, with very good, crisp lemony acidity and a decent length too. Actually rather superior stuff, bling or not.
(2021) While searching online for clues to the producer I found a few reviews mentioning the classic descriptors for Pouilly Fumé, like 'flint' and 'smoke'. I have to say I found very little of that character in a wine that majors much more on its succulent fruit, with plenty of ripe pear and apple, maybe just a touch of green herbs. Zippy acidity offsets quite sweet, quite concentrated white fruits in the mouth, for a very pleasing white with good fruit, body and balance. Part of Lidl's summer 'Wine Tour'.