Raise a glass to spring
23rd May 2016 by
Heavy wines to the back of the cellar, spring is here. Time to bring forth the light, crisp varieties that go hand in hand with the warmer weather. We are not suggesting you need to drink your way through the new season, but we do recommend you try a selection of our favourites. After all, our spring-cleaned cellar is sure to have something to whet your appetite…
Unoaked or lightly oaked Chardonnay
In my mind, Chardonnay is a good place to start – versatile, food-friendly or enjoyable on its own. If you like a lighter, crisper style, then Barons de Rothschild’s Las Huertas Chardonnay is sure to please. Straight from the Colchagua Valley in Chile, this wine is fermented and aged in such a way that it sees no oak at all. The result is a well-balanced wine with flavours of tropical fruit that compliment our Seared Scottish Scallops to perfection.
Hen & Chicken Chardonnay is another well-adjusted variety, this time from Australia’s award winning Larry Cherubino. This bold wine has plenty of vigour but its subtle oak treatment results in a surprisingly light wine – the perfect accompaniment to our Lobster & Crayfish Risotto.
Young Pinot Noir
Cruel Mistress Pinot Noir, distinctive by name and distinctive by nature, is another wine from Larry Cherubino’s Ad Hoc range. Fun, softly textured, fresh & vibrant, this pinot is made for immediate pleasure and displays ripe, intense fruits along with hints of sandalwood & liquorice. What’s more, we love the simplicity of Larry’s winemaking philosophy. He believes in spending time in the vineyard tending to the grapes, and most importantly, picking at the right time with minimal interference to what is essentially a natural process.
An equally great find is the Santenay Rouge 2014, from one of most southerly villages in the Côte de Beaune. With its ruby red hue and garnet-red lights, this particular Santenay reveals delicate aromas of berries and cherry. Supple tannins make this a very welcome addition to our Aberdeen Angus Rib of Beef.
Flowers Vineyards & Winery are also producers of first class Pinot Noir, located along the Sonoma Coast high above the Pacific. The Flowers family have adopted organic and biodynamic farming methods, thus allowing the vines and terroir to speak for themselves. The coastal minerality gives rise to flavours of cherry, raspberry & pomegranate, framed by fine-grained tannins & a bright acidity that culminates in a lengthy finish. The prince of pinot, some might say.
Authentic Chablis is all about freshness, elegance and purity – perfect for the time of year. New on the block is the Petit Chablis ‘Special Cuvée’ from Domaine Jean Goulley, which oozes style & finesse. Domaine Jean Goulley was formed in 1986 when Jean, already an owner of 6 hectares of vineyards, swapped his career in the motor trade in order to fulfil his dream to make wine. 30 years on, Jean has remained true to his passion for organic agricultural methods and needless to say, there is nothing ‘petit’ about his wine. I will be enjoying each mouth-watering sip on the terrace – glass in one hand, Pink Peppercorn Squid in the other.
Cabernet Sauvignon can fairly claim to be the noblest of the noble grape varieties and Domaine de Saissac Cabernet Sauvignon is a fine example. It displays a richness and appetising freshness that has become the hallmark of one of the oldest-established and most quality-focused wineries in France’s warm, sunny Languedoc region – Celliers Jean d’Alibert. This particular variety boasts delicious flavours of blackcurrant and its light tannins make this the perfect aperitif on a sunny evening. Try it, you will not be disappointed.