Friday, 19 August 2011

A lovely Friday Burgundy

Something to spice up a Friday evening from the cellar. The supper was only a simple pasta, yet I did not feel like a Rhone or Italian wine. I came across a single bottle of Chorey Les Beaune 2006, Tollot-Beaut, that I think I got from a mixed case from the wine society. I first tried the 2002 of this wine with David Allen, at the Rose Bowl, and so I was pleasantly inclined to this wine. And so it proved to be. Chorey Les Beaune is definitely one of the 'less-well known' parts of Burgundy, and certainly a place for the value seeker who finds a producer committed to quality.  Frequently the wine is simply called Côte de Beaune Villages as that is what customers recognise. It was just what I was looking for on this sort of a night.
The bottle itself is a marvel, with a very thin, swan-like neck, and I have not seen any other producers using a similar one.

Anyway, the wine was just right. Slightly smoky on the nose (curious?) and with good strawberry fruit flavours. On the palate it had weight, structure, length, and that ripeness from Pinot Noir that has been well cared for. Deep, comforting, and with a bit of crunchy tannin. All told, though this is a very enjoyable Burgundy for, what, about £15 I guess?? 

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Refreshing Vinho Verde

What a great wine for a summer's evening. A good vinho verde such as this one, Quinta de Azevedo  2010 (£6.99, Waitrose), is fresh, crisp, light and totally refreshing. It partners any light chicken or fish dish so well, and, being only 11.5% alcohol, doesn't give you a head the next morning! It is slightly chalky in style, and its youth shows in a bit of spritz.

Vinho Verde is Portuguese, from the Minho region in the far north of the country, and  the name literally means "Green Wine" (red or white), referring to its youthful freshness.  The region is characterized by its many small growers, so the wine offered above is from Sogrape, the large wine producer. So, it is unique, a protected denomination, and you get a chance to talk about obscure grape varieties such as Loureiro and Arinto...

The 2010 in particular has received good press, and won a number of medals, so I cannot claim an original find. That said, it is still worthy of a recommendation in anyone's book.

Much to be enjoyed here!