91

2009 Château Ksara, Clos St Alphonse, Bekaa Valley

( £9.49, 13%, Marks & Spencer )

It’s great to see a few Lebanese wines breaking into the retail mainstream, especially at a price and quality level such as this. It’s a blend of mostly Syrah with 30% Cabernet Franc and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and it underlines the country’s potential with Bordeaux-meets-the-Rhône-Valley style blends. Elegant, sweetly oaked stuff with restrained alcohol for the Bekaa Valley, some spice and an undertone of green pepper. A very modern wine from Lebanon’s oldest winery. 

BuyDrinking window: 2012-15Similar Wines: £5-£10, 91-95, Lebanon, Red, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah/Shiraz

Argentina: full speed ahead?

by Tim Atkin
The recent arrival of HMS Dauntless in the south Atlantic, complete with Prince William in his role as a search and rescue helicopter pilot, hasn’t done much for Anglo-Argentine relations....

My Dream Cellar

by Tim Atkin
Imagine, just for one minute, that you were richer than Bill Gates: more loaded than a Hollywood film star, Warren Buffett and a Russian oligarch put together. Which wines would...
91

2008 Domaine des Rochelles Anjou Villages-Brissac La Croix de La Mission

( £16.25, 14%, Haynes, Hanson & Clark )

Unusually for the Loire, which generally struggles to ripen the grape, this wine is made predominantly from Cabernet Sauvignon, blended with 10% Cabernet Franc. The result is delicious, with aromas of green pepper and graphite, supple fruit flavours and a creamy, smooth texture. In style, it’s mid-way between a claret and Bierzo red, but with a freshness and elegance which is typical of the Loire.

BuySimilar Wines: £10-£20, 91-95, France, Red, Cabernet Franc

My top dozen wines from the Biodyvin tasting

by Tim Atkin
2007 Domaine Bott-Geyl Gewurztraminer d’Alsace Grand Cru Sonnenglantz (available from OW Loeb)One of a series of stunning wines from this outstanding Colmar-based domaine. Spicy and complex, with real intenstity and...

2007 Bordeaux revisited

by Tim Atkin
We Brits aren’t very good at scrums, but that’s what the annual Institute of Masters of Wine claret tasting resembles at times, especially around the more popular wines. It’s all...

The pick of Waitrose’s wine range

by Tim Atkin
RED 2010 Saumur, Les Nivières (£7.49, 13%) Essence of Loire Cabernet Franc, this unoaked red is a delight: soft and grassy with fresh acidity, no oak and pure blackcurrant and...

Reds to help you chill out this summer

by Tim Atkin
The sommelier’s eyebrows arched like circumflex accents as he spat the words back at me, Gallic steam hissing from his ears. “Vous voulez un seau à glace?” he demanded incredulously,...

Eating out? Please bring a bottle

by Tim Atkin
How do you spend $47,221.09 on lunch for six people? Assuming your credit card company will authorise the transaction, it’s surprisingly easy if you’re a billionaire. To paraphrase Withnail in...