The Sour Grape

Tag: Single Varietal Wine

Leeuwenkuil Bushvine Cinsault 2016

Cinsault is a grape that tends to be resigned to blends in France as it softens out tannic grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon etc. But it can make fantastic lighter wines all by itself if given the opportunity and right conditions. In Swartland – South Africa, the grape has found something of home away from home…

Fresquito Montilla-Moriles PX 2014

This is an unusual wine by any stretch of the imagination. The producer had effectively made an amontillado style sherry using the ‘Pedro Ximénez’ grape variety (PX)… and instead of stopping the fermentation early by adding brandy (which is what usually happens with Sherry), they’ve allowed it to ferment the ‘usual way’. I won’t bore…

Barahonda Monastrell 2014

Monastrell (Mourvedre) is a grape that seems to have found a new identity for itself in southern Spain, in much the same way as Malbec has in Argentina. For a long time Rioja and it’s signature grape variety ‘Tempranillo’ defined Spanish wine in almost every way, but there’s a lot more the country has to…

M&S Barbera D’Asti 2013

This is a good value Italian wine from the northwest of the country will make a cracking mid-week pasta wine. In the glass it has a medium ruby colour with a pink rim and black cherry, black currant, blackberry fruit aroma with soft vanilla and a violet floral note. On the palate there’s a fresh…

The Society’s Exhibition Crozes-Hermitage 2013

The Rhone in France is divided into Northern and Southern wine regions and most of what we see on our shelves in the UK comes from the South… Grenache dominant blends with Syrah and Mourvèdre amongst other varieties; wines like ‘Cote du Rhone’, ‘Chateauneuf Du Pape’, ‘Vacqueyras’ etc. The red wines from the North (with…

Greco Sannio 2014

When it comes to un-oaked white wines, hard as it may be to believe, there’s a whole world of incredible options out there that have nothing to do Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio and Italy’s literally bursting at seams with them. Two of my favorite varieties from the sun soaked south of the country are…

Pisano Cisplatino Tannat 2014

Looks like M&S has a couple more Tannat based wines for us to enjoy! The last wine was from Argentina and this next one is another South American export, this time from Uruguay. In the glass it has a deep purple black colour with a medium intensity aroma of earthy yet ripe black & red…

El Esteco Tannat 2014

As much as I like Tannat, you don’t often see much of it around as it’s among the more obscure grape varieties to have originated in Bordeaux, but it is making something of comeback. Not only have the big French strongholds of the grape (Madiran, Saint Mont) in the south west of the country, been…

Castel Firmian Teroldego di Rotaliano Riserva 2012

Trentino in north-eastern Italy is an area mostly renowned for unleashing ‘Pinot Grigio’ on an unsuspecting world. However, it’s also the heartland for the ‘Teroldego’ grape variety, which makes dangerously moreish fruity wines. In the glass this has a deep ruby with purple rim, black cherry (Morello), Blackcurrant and purple flower (Violets) aroma. On the…

Finca Carelio Tempranillo Castilla y Leon 2011

The Spanish wine region of ‘Castilla y Leon’ is fast becoming one of my favourite go-to areas for good quality/value inventive wines. Technically it covers most of north western Spain including ‘Ribera Del Duero’ and ‘Toro’, but wine makers are able to use the wider ‘Castilla y Leon’ region to label wines made outside of…

Bodega Atamisque Catalpa Chardonnay Uco Valley 2012

Argentina, heartland for the Malbec revolution, has one aspect going for it above all other new world wine regions, altitude… lots and lots variable altitude. As a country, Argentina’s on the smoking hot side of the Andes, whereas Chile gets all the cooling ocean influence on the other. However, what Argentina has going for it…

The Society’s White Burgundy 2014

This great value un-oaked Chardonnay from southern Burgundy’s Macon region is something of a calling card for The Wine Society. Each year one of their wine experienced wine buyers travels down to the region to oversee the selection of wines and the overall blending process that goes into creating this classic icon of their range.…

Bouchard Aine & Fils Pinot Noir Vin de France 2013

Sometimes French Pinot Noir, especially from Burgundy can be designed to accompany food so much they become tangy by themselves… thankfully not so with this one! Pale ruby colour and a garnet rim full of red cherry, strawberry, Raspberry compote and soft vanilla aromas that join with the faintest hint of earthiness developing. On the…

Montes Alpha Chardonnay 2012

The Montes Alpha Chardonnay is great example of oaked chardonnay from Chile. Tropical banana, pineapple, apricot and butter cream aroma. On the palate lemon and mango fruit are balanced with butter, hazelnut and almond that build as the finish lengthens. This is a fresh balanced wine that nonetheless, that stays with you long after each…

Tesco Finest Gewürztraminer Alsace 2013

This Tesco Finest wine is a solid example of Gewürztraminer (Girdle-Trimmer), full of personality and closer to ‘dry’ than ‘off dry’. Pale straw coloured with intense rose petal, lychee and pineapple aroma. The palate is full of peach, apricot, pineapple and lychee with a viscose lees aided texture and a long Rose Turkish delight finish.…

Les Jamelles Reserve Mourvèdre Pays d’Oc 2013

This Pays d’Oc is more complex and layered than a wine of this price range has any reason to be. Consistently award winning year on year, this is a must try for anyone visiting the mighty Co-Op. Deep purple black colour with concentrated black fruits (Blackcurrant, black cherry), mingling with licorice, herbs and a hint…