A Christmassy trio from Flint Wines, following a tasting of their wines in London last month at which I was mightily impressed, as I was last year by one of their Spanish whites, Viña Somoza Sobre Lias (Classico), a godello from Valdeorras (recommended here on 18 Sept 09).
Doyard Cuvée Vendémiaire Champagne NV
It’s always a treat to find a new grower’s champagne to recommend – new to me anyway. This is a Blanc de Blancs from five grands crus, together with the premier cru Vertus where Doyard is based, and it’s a blend of 2001, 2002 and 2004, half barrel-fermented. The oak gives a touch of straw and honey to the aromatic, fresh apple and pear flavours and a sleekness and roundness to the texture. Fine and long. 12.5% abv.
£27.95, Flint Wines
2007 Domaine André Kientzler Pinot Blanc, Alsace
More expensive than most Alsace Pinot Blanc, but well worth it – this is a very sophisticated example. Fragrant, fresh and floral, with taut, nicely concentrated apple and apricot fruit and a touch of cream. Silky textured and perfectly balanced. 12.5% abv.
£11.50, Flint Wines
2007 Cristom Vineyards Mount Jefferson Pinot Noir, Willamette, Oregon
It’s a bit contrary to choose this when Flint is known for its burgundies and showed a fistful of good ones, but this is so delicious and seductive – fleshier and a little less savoury than red burgundy. Very aromatic and sweet-scented, but fresh and pure at the same time, with succulent red berry fruit, supple oak and a hint of fragrant herbs. Not too alcoholic either: 13.5% abv.£24.99, Flint Wines