Grüner Silvaner – The Hipster Grape!

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2018-gruener-silvaner-gutswein-qba-weingut-juergen-hofmann-dfbGrüner Silvaner is making a comeback. Best known as a component of Liebfraumilch and production boomed in the 1970s to the detriment of quality. But now its on the way back like vinyl and vintage clothing. he white variety is amongst the oldest cultivated vines in Europe, and is known as the Sylvaner in Austria and Switzerland, and Silvaner in Germany. The crossing is Traminer x Österreichisch Weiß, and is often called the ‘Österreicher’, or Austrian. Yields neutral to fruity wines. Aged versions usually show an expression of gooseberry.

 

The Hofmann Grüner Silvaner 2018 offers fresh notes of citrus fruits, herbs and a touch of spice lead to a bright and zesty palate with lots of orchard fruit flavours. Green pear and crunchy red apple notes are perceived before a crisp and dry finish. A zesty and aromatic white that is excellent with fresh fish dishes and also vegetarian cheese quiches. 

Available here for €16.95

 

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Some new reds from Domaine Chamfort

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Vasco Perdigao, born in Paris of Portuguese parents, bought this winery in Sablet in 2007 with his wife, Sonia, after having left his parents’ hotel business in Paris and having worked in Condrieu and Gigondas. Working in Organic viticulture, he makes three major Cotes du Rhone Villages wines and an exceptional red Vin de Pays. His first fully completed vintage – 2010 – earned him high points from Robert Parker and Jancis Robinson MW for his excellent Vacqueryas, some of which we still have.  Old vines, maniacal vineyard hygiene, obsessive ground toiling. Cool, sandy soil for Grenache in Sablet, large rolled quartz pebbles and limestone for Rasteau, heavy quartz for Vacqueryas contribute to stunning reds.

Rasteau is an Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée for wine in the southern Rhône wine region of France, covering both fortified and unfortified wines. The sweet fortified wines (Vin Doux Naturel, VDN) can be red, rosé or white, and have long been produced under the Rasteau AOC. In 2010 dry red wines (unfortified) were also added to the appellation, effective from the 2009 vintage. Domaine Chamfort’s holding in Rasteau is at an altitude of 300m and overlooks the village itself. At this altitude it benefits from bright sunny days and cool nights along with the mix of pebbles and brown clay to produce a full fruit driven and velvety wine.

The 2012 is a blend of 70% Grenache Noir and 30% Syrah. Deep rich red colour with a bright fruit driven nose of mature red fruits and ripe plummy spice. The palate is silky smooth with intensity and intertwined fruit and mineral notes. Serve with grilled meats. This beautiful wine is normally €19.95 but is currently on sale at 25% OFF until Friday 23rd of January.

Located at the northern borders of the renowned vintage and Gigondas with south southwest exposure, Chamfort’s vineyards located in Sablet, on gravelly and sandy plains village produce a classy fruit driven Cotes du Rhone Red. The 2012 is a blend of 60% Grenache and 40% Syrah although in some vintages they add some Cinsault. The nose is delicate, beautiful red fruit, with floral and spicy notes. On the palate, the tannins are smooth and a little tight. This Côtes du Rhône has a very nice volume, a lot of sweetness in the final a beautiful extension reveals notes of candied fruit, finesse.

Only the strongest survive, Tierra Fuerte

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We have stocked the wonderful Toro wines of winemaker Beatriz Paniagua, Eternum Viti and Los Colmillos, for nearly 5 and were intrigued when we discovered she had a new offering made from 100% Graciano. This is a grape we have not really seen by itself, normally it is blended with others. We had to try it and boy are we glad we did. Deep ruby-red with violet rim in colour. Mature red fruit and liquorice with an elegant mineral touch with spice and toastiness on the nose. The palate is fruity and balanced, with good structure, sweet but firm tannins and a spicy note on the finish. Making a spicy lamb Tagine then this would be the perfect partner. It is an immensely enjoyable wine, full of concentration and big, bold fruit. Tierra Fuerte (Strong Land) aptly describes this region south of
Madrid, Méntrida,  where the earth yields little and the climate is extreme. Only the brave survive!

Méntrida is a DO in the northeast corner of the province of Toledo (Castile-La Mancha, Spain).  Méntrida produces mainly red wines as the red grape variety Garnacha represents over 80% of the grapes planted. The is made up of Cencibel (local name for Tempranillo), Graciano and the usual international varieties Cab. Sauv. Shiraz etc. There is also a very small amount of white produced. Graciano is a native Spanish variety, planted in very small amounts all over Spain due to its low yields. It is used in small amounts in  Rioja to add deeper aromatics and compliment the ageing qualities of Tempranillo.  Wines of 100% Graciano tend to have spicy liquorice notes with good structure and body.