Carchelo: two modern Spanish reds from Jumilla
I've been trying quite a few Oddbins wines of late. My impression is that the buying is pretty good across the board now - before, Oddbins did well in the new world, but was a bit of a shocker when it came to France. Now even France seems to be improving. Here's a pair of modern Spanish reds from Bodegas Carchelo, that, refreshingly, are fruit driven and unspoiled by too much oak. The packaging is distinctive, too. Don't cellar for too long: these are sealed with white plastic corks.
Bodegas Carchelo Altico Syrah 2007 Jumilla, Spain
Very sweet, almost liqueur-like blackberry, dark cherry and blackcurrant nose with subtly cedary, earthy notes. The palate is sweet and lush with ripe, soft, jammy fruit and a subtle earthiness in the background. The oak (4 months in French) is in the background. While it's a very ripe, almost late-harvest style, there's still some freshness. Quite delicious, although it is super-ripe. 89/100 (£10.99 Oddbins)
Bodegas Carchelo 'Carchelo' 2008 Jumilla, Spain
A blend of 40% Monastrell, 40% Tempranillo, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. Sweet herby, minerally, spicy edge to the lush, sweet raspberry and cherry fruit nose Very seductive. The palate shows lovely spicy, minerally definition to the sweet fruit. Lovely purity of fruit, unencumbered by oak (it spends just 2 months in French oak). 89/100 (£8.99 Oddbins)