Deep salmon hued, this dry Côtes de Provence is a blend of Syrah, Grenache, Carignan and Cinsault. Grapes came from numerous clay and limestone studded plots in the heart of the Var, clustered within the communes of Cabasse sur Issole and Flassans sur Issole. Gently pressed, cool and in stainless (the typical Provencal formula), this is juicy, bright cherry, pomegranate, raspberry and orange on a crunchy frame. The attack is a bit punchy and the finish short, though is a worthy, refreshing pour this summer. Try with lightly spiced curry or aioli dipped seafood.
Nice to see the new (current) vintage on our shelves already of this likeable Savoie rosé, an expression of Gamay from limestone and clay. Also happy to see that the 2017 is back to the balanced loveliness of the 2015, with its lean, salted, fresh, herbal allure. A short time on skins lends the pale, pretty hue, while a slight time on lees comforts the palate. Lovely, elegant expression that could make a regular nightly experience at your dinner table (as it will mine).
Pale pink in colour with a bluish tint, this wine has a nose of pomegranate and red currants. Its medium-bodied, dry, pomegranate flavour is carried on lemony acidity with just a touch of residual sugar on the finish.
Pale salmon pink. Fresh fruity nose of crushed strawberry, light candy notes. Soft on the palate, tender acidity, clean fruity taste and a pleasantly round finish. Enjoy now. Good buy.
One of Southern France's most exciting natural and biodynamic wineries, overseen by winemaker Gérard Gauby, who found these abandoned vines in the late 1990s. This extended-skin contact blend of Vermentino and Macabeo is from 20-to-24-year-old vines on decomposed granite and gneiss, around 500 m altitude in the Fenouillèdes region (the French word for fennel). This is macerated on skins for 15 days before pressing and native fermented, spending a year in oak before bottling unfined and unfiltered. A dusky orange hue, this firm wine is edgy with tangerine pith, bergamot and, aptly, wild fennel. There's a lovely wisp of citrus oil perfumes and a heightened, almost nervous acidity to lift, but this wine is led and structured through the grippy tannins. Haunting mineral salts and a wild scrubby mint linger on the lingering finish.
This wine is made by the son of founders/owners Catherine and Pierre Brenton, organic champions who farm 11 hectares of vines just east of Bourgueil in the village of Restigné. Their eldest 20-something son Paul has joined the generations and made this singular Chenin from the tiny lieu-dit of Pierre Rousses in Vouvray, named for the red rocks covering the surface of the limestone undercover. Give this ample airtime to allow the exceptional layers of crushed stone, earthy pear, wild clover, key lime, honeysuckle, white pepper, ample crushed sea salts, to emerge and pulse along the confidently lackadaisical palate. After native fermentation in 1-to-2-year-old barrique, this ages in barrique for 7 months, sans MLF.
Domaine Rolet was founded in the 1940s and has remained family run ever since. With 58 hectares of vines in Arbois, Côte du Jura and L’Etoile, they are the second largest wine growing estate in Jura, working only with estate fruit. Unlike many Jura whites, L’Etoile Chardonnay was fermented in barrique, where it aged for over a year. There is a swell of flint and wood upon opening, yielding to allow the crisp and mineral white to emerge. Tight white fruit, white florals, light hazelnuts, meadow grass, dried green apples and a hum of stones, this is reminiscent of Chablis (their soils are similarly studded with marine fossils). Amplify the slight earthiness woven through here with brown buttered scallops or potent Gruyère.