A brilliant white Beaujolais

Beaujolais is becoming a very interesting wine region. Most of it is red, of course, but here’s a great white example that offers amazing value for money.

Jean-Paul Brun Chardonnay Classic Terres Dorees 2011 Beaujolais, France
12% alcohol. Complex, rounded, nutty and toasty with mineral notes as well as apple and pear fruit on the nose. The [...]

A tasty Malbec from the Loire

I was interested by this wine. Really modern packaging, and use of the variety name Malbec rather than the normal Touraine name for this grape, Cot. It’s riper than the average Loire red, a category of wines that I’m unusually drawn to.

Jean Francois Merieau Malbec Cent Visages 2009 Touraine, Loire
12% alcohol. Very modern packaing with an [...]

Julien Sunier Fleurie 2010, a delicious, serious Beaujolais

This is a really good example of how Beaujolais is becoming SERIOUS.

It’s naturally made, from organically (in conversion) farmed vineyards. It is from vineyards at almost 500 m in elevation, on a south-facing plt on pink granite, planted at high density from 50 year old vines (10 000 vines per hectare).

Julien Sunier Fleurie 2010 Beaujolais, France
12.5% [...]

Bordeaux 2010, expert opinion from first tasting of bottled wines

Along with a good portion of the wine trade, today I attended the Union des Grands Crus 2010 tasting at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. This is a very popular tasting because it is the first time most people will have seen the final bottled wines from the new vintage.

I asked some experts their [...]

Dinner at Bistrot Le Cuisinier, Blois (Loire)

I’m currently in the Loire for a quick visit to give a talk about the science of Sauvignon, with my buddy Sam Harrop who for the last few years has been involved in a very interesting Sauvignon project with InterLoire.

Last night we had a lovely dinner at Bistrot Le Cuisinier, in the pretty town of [...]

A brilliant, affordable Languedoc Syrah

Love this wine. Affordable but with some complexity. Fun yet a bit serious. Chunky but not inelegant. Ripe yet savoury. A perfect house red for autumn/winter.

Domaine Coudoulet Syrah 2011 Pays d’Oc IGP, France
14.5% alcohol. Fresh, vivid black cherry and blackberry nose, which is rich but defined with sweetness and some floral, peppery notes. The palate [...]

A great day of rugby and Rhone wines

Continuing a rather sporty weekend, on Saturday I was a guest of InterRhone at the Twickenham double header.

Two games of premiership rugby and a feed, with good company and some nice wines. What’s not to like?

The Laithwaites contingent: Becca Reeves on her phone, and Tom and Henry Laithwaite

I even took some notes of the [...]

A lovely Bordeaux, for just £8

The other day I was in a convenience store over the road, under instructions to buy some Chewits Extreme for younger son, when a couple of bottles of wine caught my eye. Along with the usual brands, there were two bottles of Caronne Ste Gemme 2004, unpriced.

I asked, and after about 5 minutes, they figured [...]

Abbe Rous Cornet et Cie Collioure Blanc, a mini vertical

Does it count as a vertical when you taste just two vintages of the same wine? Not sure. But I enjoyed opening two consecutive vintages of this lovely white wine from the Roussillon. It’s made by Banyuls producer Abbe Rous, and it’s largely old vine Grenache Gris and Blanc, with some Marsanne, Roussanne and Vermentino [...]

Northern Rhone series 26, Jean-Luc Colombo Les Fees Brunes Crozes 2009

Cornas-based winegrower and negociant Jean-Luc Colombo divides opinion. To some, he’s too modern – and I have had mixed experiences with his wines, finding some a little oak influenced, and perhaps too polished. But I have had some really nice wines from him, too, like this superb and very typical Crozes Hermitage.

Jean-Luc Colombo ‘Les Fees [...]