Recommended in: David Williams: ‘Grilling stuff: southern French red wines for barbecues‘ The Guardian, 13 August, 2023.
What he says: ‘ Much of the best grenache in southern France, meanwhile, is found in the Pyrenean lands of the Roussillon towards the border with Spain, a part of France with a strong Catalan feel, hence the name of the gorgeous grenache that is Altre Cami (which means ‘another path’ in Catalan), a pure, polished, fragrant expression in both the 2020 and (just released) 2021 vintages..’
Recommended in: Fiona Beckett: ‘French Wines for less than a tenner‘ The Guardian, 14 July, 2023.
What she says: ‘ Absolutely classic muscadet – pure, crisp and clean. Bring on the oysters.’
PLEASE NOTE: The 2021 vintage, reviewed above, is currently out of stock. The link will take to you to the current vintage, the 2022, at £11.00
Recommended in: Sarah Jane Evens: ‘Rioja gran reserva: my top 20‘ Decanter, 15 February, 2023.
What she says: ‘Take time to appreciate its qualities in the glass: the youthful aspect; the medium body; the layers of red fruits and mature tannins.’
Recommended in: Fiona Beckett: ‘It’s time to rediscover chardonnay. You may like it …,‘ The Guardian, 7 October, 2022.
What she says: ‘Lovely, creamy chardonnay with that seductive, smoky, “struck-match” character.’
Awarded: ‘Decanter World Wine Awards 2022 Best in Show 97/100’
What they say: ‘Drunk as long ago as the thirteenth century (by Emperor Frederic II) yet abandoned and almost extinct by the 1970s, the Campanian variety Fiano’s story prefigures that of the Northern Rhone’s Viognier. There’s a similarity in profile, too, notably the variety’s captivating scent, which is much in evidence in the irresistably floral aromas of this Value Best in Show from Siciliy. In the mouth, though, Fiano often has an acidic poise and freshness all of its own, combined with haunting flavours of citrus, nougat and grenadine — and more of those fresh aromatic flowers. All of those notes are packed exuberantly into this energetic young wine. Submissive and shy it isn’t — but there’s Italian class here too.’
Mentioned: On JancisRobinson.com ‘Lampyres, a Vin de France trio from Roussillon‘
What they say: ‘Each of the three was, for me, a coup de coeur. … There are so many reasons why. For one, they sum up the essence of Roussillon. Slightly wild, defiantly fresh, edgy, Catalan, windswept, resilient: wines of stone, sun and relentless winds and utterly themselves. But it is also the complexity of the wines, the endless length, the vibrating terroir transmission, the interesting artisan/garagiste honesty of them, the intensity of the fruit. The fruit… oh the fruit. .’ (Tamlyn Curry)