Not many new wines at the autumn M & S tasting, but some good stuff all the same.
Okhre Natur Cava Brut, Penedès
Bone-dry cava made from the indigenous varieties xarel-lo, macabeo and parellada grown at 700 meters. That trio of grape varieties can so easily be a recipe for terminal dullness, but this is crisp and vivid with rich and lasting apple and pear flavours. 12% abv. Great value.
£9.99, Marks & Spencer.
2009 Craggy Range Te Muna Pinot Noir, Martinborough
Beautifully aromatic – roses and jasmine with a hint of bergamot and spice; fresh, pure raspberry and cherry fruit, with oak in the background giving polished smoothness and extra depth; clean, positively bright finish. 14.5% abv.
£13.49, Marks & Spencer.
2009 Popolino Rosso, Sicilia
You can’t complain at anything that tastes half-decent at this price. Easygoing, cheap pizza red, though it doesn’t actually need food. Fresh and soft with earthy cherry fruit and a food-friendly dryness. If you’re counting, it’s made from 70% nero d’avola and 30% sangiovese and is 13% abv.
£4.99, Marks & Spencer