Eyrie Original Vines Pinot Gris, and a synaesthetic label

This is a remarkable wine on two counts. First of all, it’s a superb Pinot Gris, made without the use of any sulfites. Secondly, the label, which is synaesthetic. Winegrower Jason Lett has painted the wine. That is, he has represented the flavour of the wine visually in a painting that forms the label. In [...]

Three amazing natural wines from Mas Coutelou

These are lovely, lovely wines. I followed them over the course of a few days, so I’m fairly confident in my recommendations, too. They are made by Jeff Coutelou, in France’s Languedoc. Jeff works naturally, using very little sulfur dioxide at all. All are young, dense and grippy, and I think that you’d be safe [...]

G Descombes Regnie 2011, a serious Beaujolais

I just love this wine.

I know that’s not very profound, but it’s utterly delicious. It’s one of the naturally made new wave Beaujolais wines, and it’s just so good.

G Descombes Régnié 2011 Beaujolais, France
12% alcohol. Quite deep in colour. Brilliant, fresh, bloody, a bit meaty and really mineral, with some iron notes as well as [...]

Lapierre Morgon 2010

Marcel Lapierre, who died in October 2010, was a leading light in the dynamic natural wine movement in Beaujolais. He took over running the family domaine in 1973, and in 1981 – inspired by Jules Chauvet – began vinifying his wines with no added sulfur dioxide.

This wine, made by his son Mathieu, was the first post-Marcel wine (Marcel [...]

Natural wine, a primer

One of the hot topics of the wine world is the concept of ‘Natural Wine.’

Travel to Paris, and you will find lots of bars that specialize in vins natruels. It’s a hipster movement, and it’s beginning to catch on elsewhere. London has at least four natural wine bars at present, and this year there were [...]

A brilliant, affordable natural Salice Salentino

Come with me to the south of Italy, and to a winery who I know very little about, and about whom there is very little on the internet. This is a natural wine, made with no added sulfur dioxide, and it’s deliciously open and drinkable. It’s not expensive (I can’t find a UK stockist, but [...]

Presenting natural wines to a curious audience

Just finished a tasting for the Oxford Wine Club. I presented nine natural wines, all sourced from Les Caves de Pyrene. I knew it would be a challenge, because some of these wines were taking people well out of their comfort zone.

In some cases, these are the strong, smelly cheeses of the wine world. In [...]

A brilliant, but rather different, Argentine Malbec

I’ve been following this wine over the course of a couple of days. It’s an Argentine Malbec, but not as you know it.

It is made by Vincent Wallard, a former wine bar owner, and Emile Heredia, a natural winegrower from the Vendomois in France. According to the blog of Les Caves de Pyrene, the UK importers, [...]

Natural wine is an unnecessarily divisive subject

Natural wine is a divisive subject.

It needn’t be.

I enjoy many natural wines. I like to drink them. So do many others. They bring me great pleasure.

I don’t really mind that there is no strict definition for ‘natural wine’. If someone wants to call their wine natural then that’s fine. It is a useful banner under [...]

Naturae wines from Gerard Bertrand, made with no added sulfur dioxide

Very interested to try this pair of wines made by Gerard Bertrand, and stocked by UK retailer Marks & Spencer. They’re not what you would associate with the natural wine movement (Bertrand is a conventional producer making some very smart commercial Languedoc wines), but they are both made without any added sulfur dioxide, or indeed [...]