Today’s selections are from two of the larger and well-established names in their respective countries.
Kleine Zalze was created in its current form almost 30 years ago and is situated close to South Africa’s celebrated Stellenbosch wine region.
Grapes have been grown on the site for over 300 years.
However, it is the current owners that have structured the wines produced there into a hierarchy of impressively high-quality brands.
In Spain, the Campo Viejo operation started in 1959 and is currently one of Rioja’s leading brands.
Now part of the Pernod Ricard organisation, it produces classic Rioja blends but also has a deserved reputation for the type of varietal featured here.
I think you will enjoy both wines but do note how prices are creeping up for all the reasons I warned about recently.
As is normal here, pictures and hyperlinks are provided where possible to guide you straight to the right wine on shelf or web page.
Garnacha goes it alone here.
2021 Campo Viejo Garnacha (£7.50 – instead of £8.75 until 5 September – at Sainsbury’s and 13.5% abv):
Blending garnacha (grenache in French) and tempranillo is, of course, an important part of the wines of Rioja.
However, excellent single-varietal versions of garnacha from there (like this one) are increasingly common now.
Dark with eucalyptus aromas and soft tannin, it is centred around velvet smooth cherry and damson flavours.
That foundation is neatly coupled with suggestions of vanilla and aniseed and is given verve by firm orange peel acidity too.
Impressive Chenin Blanc.
2022 Zalze Bush Vine Chenin Blanc (£7 – down from £7.75 until 5 September – at Morrisons and 13%):
The second and third words in this South African wine’s name do have significance.
Bush vine cultivation (rather than trellised) usually means fewer grape clusters and, therefore, more concentrated and intensely flavoured fruit.
True to form, this example does indeed have pronounced flavours – red apple and melon influences in this case.
These are accompanied by lemon and tangerine acidity, a smooth peach influenced texture and attractive honey aromas.
After today’s focus on wines on promotion, I take a broad look at a grape variety that is often misunderstood these days – chardonnay – when we meet again on Thursday.
Subscribe for FREE!
Do you want every review I write, direct to your inbox, absolutely free?