91

2023 Mythral Côtes de Provence Rosé, Provence

( £11.99, 12.5%, Majestic )

Good value by the standards of some Provence rosés – surely one of the most profitable wine styles in the world – this is an appealingly packaged, lip-smacking pink from Les Grands Chais de France. Based on Grenache, with the remaining 40% made up of six other red and white grapes, it has good focus and intensity, redcurrant, watermelon and rosehip flavours and a refreshing, chalky finish.

BuyDrinking window: 2024-25Similar Wines: £10-15, 90-94, France, Rose, Carignan, Cinsault, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah, Rolle, Ugni Blanc

By The Book?

by Margaret Rand
Can winemakers still be self-taught? Or must they, in this technocratic age, be able to sport some letters after their name? When I asked Peter Hall, the arch-maverick of Breaky...
93

2022 Laurent Miquel Lieu-Dit La Vérité Viognier, Pays d'Oc

( £19.99, 14.5%, Waitrose Cellar )

I have to admit that I often find Viognier a one glass wine, but Laurent Miquel’s La Vérité from a special parcel on one of his Languedoc estates is the kind of thing I could drink by the case. Intense, textured, creamy, yet refreshing, it has aromas of honeysuckle and vanilla, a toasty top note from ageing in new French barrels, layers of peach, citrus zest and apricot and enough acidity to keep the palate barrelling along.

BuyDrinking window: 2024-27Similar Wines: £15-20, 90-94, France, White, Viognier

Having Fun With Wine

by Tim Atkin
At first sight, it looked like a PR disaster. Sir Ed Davey, leader of the Liberal Democrats, was filmed falling off a paddleboard into Lake Windermere five times. He’s a...
90

2022 Taste the Difference Côtes du Rhône White, Rhône Valley

( £9, 12.5%, Sainbury's )

Who needs to age a white wine in oak when it has as much flavour as this southern Rhône blend of Grenache Blanc, 20% Viognier, 12% Roussanne and 10% Marsanne? Honeysuckle, jasmine and ginger aromas segue into a palate that’s light, zesty and refreshing, with peach, lemongrass and wild mountain herb flavours and a bright, appealingly tangy finish.

BuyDrinking window: 2024-27Similar Wines: £5-£10, 90-94, France, White, Grenache Bland, Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier

Dorothy Parker Wines

by Harry Eyres
For the past three years I’ve been serving on the committee of my local tennis club in west London. Calling it a tennis club is accurate up to a point;...

Just Another Luxury Product?

by Andy Neather
This year’s Bordeaux En Primeur campaign has attracted much controversy over release prices. But while a number of leading châteaux have made substantial cuts on what they charged for the...

The Weight Of Wine

by Margaret Rand
What constitutes high alcohol now? In table wines, I mean; fortifieds haven’t changed. But I recall the horror when reds started hitting 14%. Then 14.5%. And now? 14% seems quite...

A Classic In The Making?

by Rod Smith MW
After the excessive heat of 2022, the vintage 2023 marks a return to normality for Bordeaux. Had this vintage happened 30, or even 20, years ago, it would have gone...

Wines To Drink On A Date

by Cong Cong Bo
On a cold, bright Saturday afternoon in January, a student couple entered my Cambridge wine shop-bar, Amphora. It was early and the venue was empty. After glancing at the extensive...

Vintage Intrigue

by Charlie Leary
One-time Deputy Paymaster to the British Forces, Richard Hill (1655-1727) had an honest soul and functioned as a forthright servant of His Majesty’s Government. For although he loved wine, perhaps...
91

2022 The Society's Chinon, The Loire Valley

( £9.99, 13%, The Wine Society )

Partly inspired by a line in Peter Pharos’ latest column, I’ve decided to feature a Chinon as my wine of the week. The Loire Valley is one of those under-rated French regions  that consistently delivers great value for money, especially for Cabernet Franc and Chenin Blanc lovers. This is a gloriously scented, leafy, unwooded example of the former grape from Famille Bougrier, with crunchy acidity, raspberry and black cherry flavours and top notes of graphite and green herbs. Appealingly juicy.

BuyDrinking window: 2024-30Similar Wines: £5-£10, 90-94, France, Red, Cabernet Franc