I can't believe I'm turning my back on white Burgundy, but I’ll never forget the first time I tried one of Italy’s greatest white wines of all, Valentini’s Trebbiano d’Abruzzo. This fabulous organic Trebbiano from Modigliana reminds me of that wine in a way, and I just love how it encapsulates everything about its region’s extraordinary terroir, with its nuances of the surrounding forests, the ancient seashell and fossil packed soils, and its high elevation conferring wonderful, nervy freshness. I know it will only get better with time in bottle, but I can’t wait to drink it with our traditional Christmas eve fish feast. I’ll be pairing it with sashimi and ponzu and other delicious fishy bites.
Perfect to impress the wine buffs or geeks you know, this is a wine I’ve shared with several winemakers over the last few months, with each of them in raptures over. Produced from 5 remote plots of 80+ year old vines on the banks of the Bibei river by a legendary Spanish winemaker, it’s a homage to Valdeorras reds of the past: a blend of Mencia, Merenzao and Brancellao. The aromatics are utterly beautiful, but it’s got real backbone too, and definitely benefits from decanting. It was amazing serving with iberico secreto, and would be great with any pork dish, or perhaps hake and mushrooms.
I love a lightly chilled red, and after all the heavy meals of Xmas, they’re more welcome than ever. Pierre’s Pinot Noir is everything you could want and more, and most importantly, is both delicious on its own and v food friendly. Cold slices of glazed ham? Check. Leftover pigs in blankets dipped in cranberry sauce? Check. Turkey sandwiches or curry? Check. Terrible Xmas TV and a mid-afternoon slump whilst being sipped from a toothmug? Check.
Lemon sherbet, crunchy green apple and a hint of graphite encircle a wonderful drying, leesy and textured core. So pithy, but so expressive. Some of the lime-y savoury profile of good Cava with that fine-tuned linearity and weight of a killer Blanc de Blancs. Classy as anything, but effortlessly fun at the same time. Humble enough to open spontaneously with no regrets, high quality enough to pore over and luxuriate with. What a winner.
2019 Burgundy is all about gushing, fruit-forward openness – and this provides that in spades. Coming from the cooler village of St Romain behind the traditional slopes of the Cote d’Or, you wouldn’t know it at all! Throbbing, opulent fruit flowing along its ripe reverberating length, the edges are nevertheless clean and refined. Put this in a massive glass, chilled just a little so you can get the benefit of that fruit, and bathe in its warmth.
All the appeal that the mish-mash of indigenous Douro varieties offers is here. Florals, red and black berries are the name of the game here, offset by an almost minty-cool rocky freshness. Douro reds always balance themselves out in this way, which is why they’re always so fruity but so refreshing at the same time. You can do anything you want this and it’ll keep giving pleasure. A wine that feels like home.
Peiter’s second only release of his ultra-classy Chardonnay, I absolutely love this wine. With Luuks roughly translating to ‘Lux’ / ‘Luxury’ it sums this wine up perfectly. Overflowing with blooming white Frangipani, baked apple oat crumble nose , balancing out on the palate to become a glass that you will find incredibly hard to put down – it also has a long life ahead of itself.
As an Aussie wine fanatic I always have a bottle of Curly Flat close to hand, a country I called home for many years, this decadent Pinot takes me home in a sniff. A blend of red berries, eucalyptus, touch of cedar and all coming to life in that first sip. Soft mouthfeel, showing layers of promise and a subtle richness – delicious!
It’s not just the incredible story that elevates this wine, it is the powerful lift of precision that keeps developing in the glass that captures, demands attention. Packed full of baked spices, red and black fruits, a subtle touch of Christmas cinnamon that comes through and a finish that doesn’t seem to stop!
A stunning Chardonnay, rich, toasty and very classy. From a tiny 1.5 ha vineyard and star winemaker.
Utterly charming and effortless. Vibrant with notes of red currant and wood spice. Very silky and long. A red burgundy which is the ultimate crowd pleaser.
A rich, fruit laden red from the southern Rhone, perfect for fireside sipping, paired with a cheese board.