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21 June 2022

June wines of the moment

A mixed baker's dozen (plus) of wines worth taking bad photos of...
M&S 'Found' Weißburgunder 2021, Pfalz Germany (12.5% abv): Or Pinot Blanc to use its more familiar French name (Pinot Bianco in Italy). This juicy zesty pear and nectarine tinged dry white is from talented winemaker Gerd Stepp, who's made other tasty 'modern' German wines for Marks including delicious Riesling and Pinot Noir. Resembles Alsace Pinot Blanc in style but with more flavour. £9.50

27 May 2022

Irish craft beer: 'Belgian Style' Saison & Foxes Rock

The Crafty Brewing Co
 label is an 'exclusive' range brewed by the Rye River Brewing Company in Co. Kildare for Lidl Ireland. Their deliciously refreshing Belgian Style Saison (4.8% abv), whatever that means, is very aromatic and crisp while full-flavoured. The brewery's (edited) tasting note says it all (and much more...): 'Hazy and unfiltered with a stiff rocky foam that exudes an aroma of fruits, spice, bubblegum and herbs... (and) subtle notes of Sauvignon Blanc (it really does) from a late hop addition finishing dry.' Good with Thai green curry. €1.99 (500ml).

15 May 2022

More Chardonnay: France, Spain, Chile.


Following on from my '50 years of Chardonnay' in Australia feature, five other gratuitous Chardies enjoyed recently include:
Le Stopgap Chardonnay 2021 Vin de France, Jacques Depagneux (13% abv): 'Much of the blend comes from Limoux with a little from the central Languedoc and essential dash from the Mâconnais...'

12 May 2022

Australia: 50 years of Chardonnay.

Indeed, fifty years young. As Wine Australia put it in the intro to a recent celebratory tasting: "With the first varietally-labelled Chardonnay produced in Australia in 1972, now is the perfect time to revisit the story of Australia’s most iconic white wine. From the first vine cuttings in the 1830s to the big buttery wines of the 1990s, to today’s regionally distinct refined styles, Australian Chardonnay has come a long way."
(Tyrrell's, Leeuwin, Forest Hill, Penfolds, Moorooduc, Giant Steps, Shaw&Smith, Tolpuddle. And a wine geek warning!)

02 May 2022

Spain: Cava Cabré & Sabaté.

Cabré & Sabaté is yet another packaging guise created by bespoke-label Cava maestro Jaume Serra for Mercadona and other supermarkets in Spain; this impressive winery also produces very good fizz for several UK retailers (Asda, Aldi, Morrison's...).

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