Champagne R&L Legras Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru

I’m getting into grower Champagne at the moment. Some stunning wines, often at very good prices. This lovely: it’s from R&L Legras in Chouilly, the most northerly village in the Cotes des Blancs, and it’s the same price as a Grand Marque NV. Which is nuts. I’ve reviewed wines before from them here, here, here [...]

Domaine Jamet Côtes du Rhône 2008

This is the sort of wine I just love, even though it’s one that probably needs to be drunk up now. It’s inexpensive but it’s authentic. It tastes of where it comes from: the northern Rhône, interpreted through the lens of Syrah. It’s not trying to be anything other than what it is, and I [...]

Three Jura wines: Lucien Aviet Trousseau, Domaine Labet Poulsard and Jacques Puffeney Chardonnay

At Daniel Primack’s home we consumed a number of wine wines yesterday, including this triplet from the Jura. The first two were from Daniel’s cellar; the third was brought by fellow wine writer Matt Walls. I think I love the Jura.

Lucien Aviet et Fils Caveau de Bacchus Réserve Cuvée des Géologues 2012 Jura, France
13% alcohol. [...]

Gamay focus, 10 - Puy de Dôme Gamay 2013 from the Auvergne

I recently wrote about the wines from Caves Saint Vernay in France’s Auvergne, a volcanic terroir in the south of the Loire. Well, next stop on my Gamay journey is the Auvergne, and their varietal Gamay. Reds here are typically a blend of Gamay and Pinot Noir, but on its own, the Gamay really shines. [...]

A great lunch at Social Wine and Tapas, with Savart and Pignan

Charles Spence, the noted red-trousered Professor of Experimental Psychology at Oxford University wrote one of my favourite books of late, titled The Perfect Meal. I think I had a lunch today that would get pretty close, at Social Wine and Tapas with Dan Keeling of Noble Rot.

Of course, I was primed to like it. Our [...]

Champagne Lallier's new R.012

I was intrigued by this new wine. It’s a non-vintage Champagne from Lallier, but it’s particularly honest about its component parts. Francis Tribaut, the owner/winemaker at Lallier has decided to label it R.012, indicating that it’s mostly from the 2012 vintage. But by using reserve wines – in this case 19% of the blend is [...]

Gamay focus, 8 - Domaine Sérol Les Originelles 2014 Côte Roannaise

Once again, in my pursuit of Gamay, I am stepping outside of Beaujolais, this time to Côte Roannaise in the south of the Loire. I’m also finding this adventure a relatively affordable one, because Gamay is rarely expensive. I think this will change in time: in 20 years time, might Gamay be highly sought after? [...]

Gamay focus, 7 - Domaine des Hauts de Chasselay Coteaux du Lyonnais

So, in the next episode of my quest to explore Gamay, I’m heading just south of Beaujolais to the Coteaux du Lyonnais, a small appellation of 370 hectares of vines to the west of Lyon. It’s a little known AOP, which works in favour of the consumer because the prices are modest. Indeed, this is [...]

Two lovely volcanic wines from the Cotes d'Auvergne

Cave St Verny make some lovely wines, from the Côtes d’Auvergne, a really interesting but obscure wine region pretty much in the middle of France, which is counted as part of the Loire. It’s based around a volcano,  Puy de Dôme, at the edge of the Massif Central, which makes for some interesting terroirs. The [...]

Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhône Blanc 2009

Found this in my brother-in-law’s fridge when I popped round to see some of my family who were pug-sitting (he wasn’t there), so cracked it open with lunch. I thought it might be a bit past it, but it was definitely still full of life. Maybe it’s the 30% Picpoul de Pinet that Louis Barruol blends [...]