Sancerre Les Sentiers
Ten generations of family expertise are packed into this delicious, fruity Sancerre. It has all the tang and vibrancy of Sancerre, with a lime and yellow plum fruit. Goat’s Cheese, fish and even lightly spiced chicken dishes are great matches.
Santa Rita Secret Reserve Carmenere
“What Merlot lovers drank next” would be the title for a film about Carmenere. More redcurrant, spice and lift give this wine real character. It’s from one of Chile’s most historic producers and a brilliant discovery on The Wine Show
Louis Jadot Bourgogne Pinot Noir
In Louis Jadot cellars is a barrel of The Wine Show’s wine. This is their classic though, a raspberry and cherry-scented Pinot Noir. Soft, supple and fresh, perfectly ever-so-lightly chilled (even as a red) and incredibly versatile.
CUNE Rioja Reserva
There’s a winter ramble of flavours here. Leather, bramble, spice, coffee and caramel. The ultimate partner to lamb, it’s also perfectly matched with a night in front of a classic movie or box set. From one of Rioja’s most celebrated family producers.
Villa Maria Bin Sauvignon Blanc
There are lots of Sauvignon Blancs, but few count as classics. This is a go-to wine for Kiwi Sauvignon lovers like us. Gooseberries, lime and tropical fruit, it’s a juicy, fruity wine for drinks with friends and a perfect partner for Pacific Rim spiced dishes.
Laurent Perrier La Cuvee Brut Champagne
The mark of great Champagne is the ‘mouth-filling perfume’ that lingers on your palate. You’ll find it here, with a sleek, elegant freshness followed by a long and floral complexity. A perfect wine for lovers of lift, grace and harmony.
Laurent Perrier Cuvee Rose Champagne
The wine that caused a revolution. Not only because of the sweep of berries, cherry and currants. Or the freshness and precision that marks the palate. But also the elegant, historic presentation and vibrant salmon-pink colour. It’s lovely with pink food. Think salmon and prawn.
Abbaye De Lerins Saint-Pierre
Along with the partner red, this was a huge surprise when it arrived, fresh from an Island off the coast near Cannes. The monks make the most of a particularly good soil and cool, fresh coastal breezes to keep the freshness in the grapes. They also cleverly lift the peachy aromas of Chardonnay with the zest of Clairette, a local grape more suited to the warm climate.
Olivier Horiot 5 Sens
Against a backdrop of established producers, Olivier Horiot only began making Champagne in 2004 (still wines in 2000). This quirky, fruity blend is has the classic tio of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, as well as Arbanne and Pinot Blanc. It’s fragrant and brisk and deliciously different too.
Hirsch Vineyards West Ridge Estate Pinot Noir
I have no doubt lives have been changed by this wine. Hirsch are among the most lauded California producers by Pinotphiles. Intense and complex, this is an expression of California as much as Pinot Noir. There’s inviting richness but also delicacy. Truffles and earth, but a New World heart of vibrant berry fruit.
Conti Costanti Brunello di Montalcino
A “must try” for lovers of Brunello and great Italian reds, Andrea Costanti has worked tirelessly to make this one of the greatest Brunellos. Rich morello cherry, a clearly-defined spine from high-altitude sub-plots, spices and lingering, seamlessly integrated oak that leaves a hint of aniseed and liquorice. Utterly delicious.
Francois Chidaine Montlouis-sur-Loire Les Choisilles
There’s a reason sommeliers love Chenin from the classic appellations of the Loire. It’s in the tension and fruit purity. There’s a smokiness (notionally from “Les Choisilles” – black flint) too, and it all combines into a fabulous food matching style. It’s a great foil to the sort of complex, poised, thoughful food you find in the finest restaurants.
Gabrio Bini Serragghia Zibibbo Secco
A wine that defies tasting notes – it’s an “amber” or orange wine, so you have the detailed structure of a red, with complex, surprising, fascinating aromas that you don’t expect constantly popping on your palate’s timeline. Beguiling. At times bizzare. Whatever you do, dont’ drink this wine without looking up winemaker Gabrio Bini and his remarkable vineyards on Pantelleria.
Monte Cascas Malvasia de Colares
Here is a massive insider tip. It’s going to be harder to buy Chablis for the next few years as the harvests have been tough. But switch to Colares Malvasia like this gorgeous wine and you’ll have plenty of intense, minerally, slightly iodine tang fun in the same style. Awesome with shellfish, gorgeous with hake.
Hambledon Classic Cuvee
This isn’t just great sparkling wine. It’s not just great English sparkling wine. This is a historic wine, from one of the most important estates in the development of English fizz. The dried and fresh fruit character, the toasty brioche, the succulent fizz on the palate; it’s delicious. It’s also a seriously classy wine, rivalling the greatest sparklers from around the world.