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Six wines from Transitvin.com
Wineanorak sponsor Transitvin.com is a UK mail-order-only merchant based in France, specializing in lesser-known properties that they consider to be Bordeaux's best-kept secrets. Here are my notes on half a dozen wines they recently sent me for evaluation. With one exception, I thought these were pretty good: my favourites were the Lavergne, Brandeau and Saule. After the hype of the 2000 en primeur campaign, it's nice to the other side of Bordeaux: tasty, digestible reds at affordable prices.

Château Peyanché Blanc, Côtes de Francs, Elévé en fût de chêne
A slightly old-fashioned style of white, the nose shows lemony fruit with honey and toasty notes, and a touch of vanilla. The palate is quite dense, herby and waxy. There's good balance, some complexity and a hint of oxidation, so drink up fairly soon. Quite woody. Good/very good 05/01 (£6.75)

Vieux Château Renaissance 2000 Sauvignon AOC Bordeaux
Nice leafy nose showing grapefruity fruit with a touch of gooseberry. The palate shows crisp clean fruit. Archetypal Sauvignon. Good/very good 05/01 (£5.99)

Château Brandeau 1998 Côtes de Castillon
An organic wine, this has a bright red/purple colour. It's a medium bodied red with a nose showing attractive leafy, cedary blackcurrant fruit. The rounded palate is dominated by ripe berry fruit, with a touch of spicy tannin. It's not a big, concentrated effort but it's a nice, well balanced, digestable Bordeaux. Very good 05/01 (£6.79)

Château Vieux Saule 1997, Côtes de Francs
Lovely, open, leafy, cedary nose with some smoky, mineral notes. There are some slightly green notes the blackcurrant fruit on the palate, and there are some spicy, stalky tannins. There's a lovely, savoury character. The next day a delicious minerally character emerges that remains me of wet pavements. Very good 05/01 (£5.75)

Château Lavergne Cuvée Prestige 1998, Côtes de Castillon
An oak aged wine, this is a medium bodied red/purple with a sweet nose of leafy/herbaceous fruit (blackcurrant and raspberry), and some smoky notes. It's not particularly concentrated on the palate, but there's a sweet core to the fruit and it's showing good balance. The next day it has opened out nicely. An attractive, digestible wine for current consumption. Very good+ 05/01 (£6.99)

Château Montpezat Côtes de Castillon 1996
Bright red colour with a bricking rim. The nose is slightly green and a little bit volatile. On the palate it is a bit fruitless with tart acidity. In danger of becoming a bit plonkish. Drinkable with food. OK/Good 05/01 (£6.99)

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