Since few things standstill, it is always nice to sample innovations in the world of wine, as elsewhere.
Some great options are deservedly gaining traction and remind us not to get too hidebound by what we have always enjoyed.
Whites from South West France and pinot noir from Romania are but two examples of impressive (relative) newcomers.
Nevertheless, there is still room for a decent drop of something reassuringly familiar.
If you find that suggestion vaguely comforting, today’s selections should certainly contain something for you.
They range from a great example of the muscadet revival to the instantly recognisable Casillero del Diablo label.
The route from one of those to the other also takes in the perpetually dependable garnacha (grenache) grape of Spain and France.
Enjoy them all.
Adopting my traditional format, images and, where possible, hyperlinks accompany the assessments of the wines.
Another terrific Muscadet
2021 Chateau de la Petite Giraudiere Muscadet (£7.75 at the Co-op and 12% abv):
I have recommended modern Muscadet before and here is a superb example of its attractiveness.
It is “Sur Lie” which means that the wine was aged on its lees (a sediment of expired yeast) after fermentation to enhance its depth and complexity.
Perfumed but with a pleasing richness, the result here has textured apple, orange and pear flavours.
Those foundations are given verve by grapefruit acidity and a finish that combines saline hints and garrigue influences.
NB: The price in store may differ from the one quoted on the website.
Garnacha going it alone in Spain.
2021 Taste the Difference Campo de Borja Garnacha (£8 in Scotland – but 25% off when you buy three elsewhere until 25 July – at Sainsbury’s and 14.5%):
The coy aromas of this exclusively garnacha (grenache) Spanish red from Rioja’s neighbour are misleading.
Its bold, juicy loganberry, damson and blackcurrant flavours are far from bashful.
In addition, within its medium bodied structure there are also chocolate and vanilla touches with lively acidity, but only limited tannin.
I think I am right in saying that this is made for Sainsbury’s by the talented Norrel Robertson MW but it's certainly a classy garnacha that, this time, is not blended with anything else.
And here’s a back-up red – if you are quick
2021 Casillero del Diablo Cabernet Sauvignon (£6.50 – instead of £7.50 for Tesco Clubcard holders until 17 July – and 13.5%):
In case you cannot get to that Sainsbury’s multi-buy option, this red is currently on promotion – but only until midnight tonight.
It seems to be developing nicely with soft, medium bodied plum and cherry flavours and only modest tannin.
While the raspberry acidity and toffee elements I detected the last time I tasted it, persist they are joined now by a twist of gravel savouriness and espresso hints.
The next post (on Thursday) reveals my suggestions for whites to enjoy during the summer – to complement my BBQ reds post a week or so ago.
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