Wines of the Week 22 October 2010
Three wines from Waitrose, none of which, as it happens, is being shown at the Wine Gang Christmas Fair on 6 November at Vinopolis in London, but Waitrose has got a cracking line up for the Fair. Here's where you get tickets: TicketSoup . End of this week's shameless plug.
2007 Vincent de Vignaud Pouilly-Vinzelles
Unoaked white burgundy of impressive purity. Nutty, creamy, lightly buttery and honeyed flavours around a core of freshness and – courtesy of six months lees ageing and stirring – a fine, silky texture. The vines (chardonnay) average 25 years and are on clay and limestone. 13% abv.
2008 Château de Bouissel Fronton Classic
Good on Waitrose for introducing a Fronton, one of the many fascinating wines from southwest France that are hard to find in the UK. This is a red (there’s no white Fronton, but there is rosé ) made from 50% of the local négrette, the minimum required by the appellation, and 25% each of syrah and malbec. It’s the négrette that gives the deep, inky colour, together with red berry and tobacco aromas and a chewy, medium-full palate with cherry fruit, hints of spice, leather and charcoal and some lightly grainy tannin. It’s unoaked, unfiltered and unfined, so you’re getting an authentic taste of Fronton terroir. 13% abv. I once had dinner with a group of Fronton producers in a local fish restaurant. Their choice. No idea why. Red Fronton doesn’t go with fish, but it does go well with red meat.
£8.99, Waitrose (about 60% of branches) and waitrosewine.com
2008 La Bastide Blanche Bandol, Provence
Another imaginative red from Waitrose. It’s very young for Bandol and deserves to be put away for anything from two to eight years, but it’s certainly drinkable now if you don’t mind a bit of chunky tannin and some acidity alongside the smoky, rich cassis fruit, spicy nutmeg and black tapenade flavours. Aged in oak barrels (small and large), but there’s too much else going on for the oak to intrude. 14% abv. Good with powerful meat and game.
£12.99, Waitrose and waitrosewine.com