2008 The Society’s Exhibition Tasmanian Chardonnay
I meant to recommend this in the autumn, but it slipped off the radar and it’s now £1 more expensive. But who cares? It’s well worth the higher price and, as my tasting note ended with the comment ‘probably even better in 2010 and 2011’, now is the time. It’s rich and creamy in taste and texture, but off-set by intense lemon-peel acidity, together with a lovely nutty flavour and real depth and complexity. It’s made by the Freycinet winery and beats many a Côte d’Or burgundy for the money. 13.5% abv.
£12.95, The Wine Society
2008 Seresin Leah Pinot Noir, Marlborough
Very pure, very impressive and still young. This is fragrant with roses and summer berries and has a palate of sweet red fruits, savoury mineral flavours, polished oak, a fine acid structure, length and intensity. The hand on the label signifies hand-grown, hand-picked and hand-made (which includes wild yeast fermentation and 11 months maturation in French oak barrels). Drink over the next four years. Gives red burgundy a run for its money. 14% abv.
£18.99, Armit (sold by the 6-bottle case).
2007 Agricola Punica, Montessu, IGT Isola dei Nuraghi
Deep-coloured, full-bodied Sardinian red with a lush aroma of ripe raspberries and a generous, fleshy palate with spicy, liquoricy, black-fruit flavours, hints of fresh herbs and the grip of gently chewy tannins and acidity. It’s 60% carignano with 10% each of syrah, the two cabernets and merlot and it was aged in French barriques. Agricola Punica is a new agency for Armit; both sides must be feeling pretty chuffed. 14.5% abv.
£15.90, Armit (sold by the 6-bottle case).