Is this the world’s most dangerous wine? A curious blend of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc from Mount Bargylus near the Roman city of Antioch in Syria. For the taste, thing of a broader version of white Bordeaux (oak, citrus, stone fruit) and a minerally, salty tang. For winemaking though, think ISIS artillery shells blowing up vines and firefights 100m away. A remarkable story, and astonishing wine.
You may not see a Zilavka for a year, or several years. But keep it in mind. This refreshing, citrusy, ripe white is the future of wine from Bosnia-Herzegovina. Not complex, but we can’t all drink Montrachet every day. But great value, attractively bright, distinctive and characterful. It’s also generally good – we tasted lots and they were all lovely. If you see Zilavka like this appear on shelves, buy it.
This is the sort of wine that makes people realise Canada is playing with the big boys now. Rich, complex, multi-dimensional wine that lingers on the palate. It’s a new world-style Chardonnay with baked pastry and spice over fleshy fruit. But seamless in the glass. Turbot, Halibut or Monkfish are the perfect matches while in time it will become more complex and is clearly meant to become a benchmark for the region’s top wines.
Named after the owls that burrow in Prairie Dog holes, this is the kind of Chardonnay that gets you excited about Canada. And we’re excited. The 2014 was a ripe, nectarine-scented vintage, while others have had more cool-climate restraint. It’s made using all the classic techniques of barrel-fermentation and gentle handling and it shows. Put Canada – East and West Coast – on your drinking “to do list” this year.
Honeysuckle aromas in wine are always a good sign. This has them in spades, along with a spiced melon ripeness that you’ll love. It’s bone dry and utterly fascinating. Rkatsiteli can be dull and flat, but not here where it’s been crafted into a delicious, Friday-night wine par excellence. Georgians eat richly flavoured dishes with lots of cheese and sauces. Do the same and this wine will be your friend.
The Valley Project’s tasting room in Santa Barbara’s “Funk Zone” was the brainchild of renowned winemaker Seth Kunin. Tragically we heard he died in his sleep a few months after we visited. He was an inspiration behind the sense of adventure and exploration with varieties like this Grenache Blanc. Finding the perfect sites for this fleshy, dill-scented, attractive wine.
Some of us like something sweeter. Softer. Richer. But it’s so hard to find. So, when you come across wines like this with its lightly-sweet style and sweet peach and lightly-honeyed style, hold them dear. Sweeter wines make wonderful companions to spicier dishes. But also this is gorgeous to sip through the evening. It’s aromatic, fragrant with a beautiful balance of lifted citrus freshness.
The curious geography of California’s Central Coast lets winemakers experiment. To make the most of little valleys to bring out different styles. It’s the extremes of warm days that flesh out the pear fruit. And cold nights that keep tangy, crisp apple that make this distinctive. It’s oaky with baked pastry and made for roasted chicken, turkey, corn and pies.
Smart enough to share with friends. Friendly enough to drink with anything. This has the class of Chardonnay with the yuzu lemon lift of Vermentino. And on The Wine Show we love Vermentino. Oak-fermented for integrated, toasty complexity, it packs in the sunshine of the southern Rhone, lifted by cool night-time breezes from the coast. Drink with poultry and a good time.
A hidden secret in the cool hills inland from most of Provence. The coolness lifts the wines and gives them an elegant freshness so you’ll find there’s more bright fruit and less herbal weight. Perfect with the rich flavours of Provence, the wines are hard to find outside, mostly sold in restaurants along the coast. But look for Rolle on labels – it’s what Italians call Vermentino and keeps a zest in the sun.
Markus Huber was born in 1979, and received his education in viniculture and oenology in Klosterneuburg, Austria. After visits abroad in South Africa in the year 2000, he began to gradually expand his small, more than 250 year old family-owned winery into an internationally recognised, leading Austrian company. His goal is the production of white wines of the highest quality among many awards at home and abroad, Markus Huber was elected Austria’s “Falstaff Winemaker of the Year 2015”.
This wine is entirely made from the most important grape variety in Austria, Grüner Veltliner, which achieved worldwide awareness and popularity at the end of the last century. A complex and elegant wine with aromas of herbs and yellow fruit. A wine which is characterised by its precision and fine mineralogy, with a striking potential for ageing!
The Chateau Dereszla is one of the wineries with the richest history in the Tokaj wine region. It has records of its winemaking dating back to the 1450’s. Today it is owned by the d’Aulan family, originally from Champagne. They arrived in 2000 and have truly revived this winery which had seen years of neglect. While this region might be world renown for its sweet wines, the dry version of Tokaji can also be fantastic as you can see with this wine.
A fantastic wine! We have a wine that has great freshness, zingyness but it is wonderfully balanced by a rich texture, and mouthfeel. No doubt a fine wine in our eyes; it really oozes class and elegance. Enjoy!
The Domaine is situated in the North of Burgundy, near the appellation of Chablis. Ghislaine and Jean-Hugues run the family estate that can trace its history back to the 14th Century. They produce pure wines biodynamically, with the upmost respect for the environment and of course, the wines.
Made entirely from Aligoté, the lesser known grape variety of Burgundy, this is a wine full of character and when you really look though, you will find a wine that has a fair bit of complexity.
Feudi di San Gregorio is one of the leading estates in Campania (the region of Naples) in the South of Italy. Wine makers here are renowned for their Greco di Tufo, Fiano di Avellino and of course Falanghina. The winery is only 30 years old but it is no doubt producing some of the most exciting wines in South of Italy.
Such a great little wine… wonderful fruitiness and roundness. It’s just a wine you want to go back to on a warm summer afternoon whether with some food or as an aperitif. It is a perfect example to show you how Southern Italian wines can also be of great quality.
Located in the far north of Argentina, Salta is home to some of the world’s most extreme vineyards, taht sit at both lower and higher altitudes than anywhere else in the world.
Torrontes is the signature white wine of Argentina. Torrontes grapes typically produce a light, refreshing white wine with jasmine and orange blossom tones.
Colome Torrontes is a very pale bright yellow. It’s pure and delicate with hints of rose petal and dusty brown spices. This is a great example of a serious yet seductive Torronte!
La Guardiense is a co-operative near Benevento in Campania. In 2006, they revolutionised their winemaking and cellarage with the arrival of celebrated oenologist Riccardo Cottarella and are now producing some of the best white wines in the region. They are clearly one to watch in the next few years!
Guardiene’s Greco is a stunning example of why Southern Italy is slowly making a name for itself among the world’s great whites. It’s everything you want from a Mediterranean white: wonderful expressive aromas with floral and white fruit notes. On the palate, good roundness but also brilliant freshness.. How could you say no to a glass of this on a hot summer day?
California is the largest and most important wine region in the United States. Occupying the southern two-thirds of the country’s west coast, it spans almost ten degrees of latitude and 850 miles of coastline. With mountains, valleys, plains and plateaux, the state’s topography is as complex as its climate, offering winegrowers a bewildering choice of terroir.
Hand crafting wine is something Bogle winemakers have done for nearly 40 years now. With passion for both the art and science of making wine, Bogle create delicious wines to grace your table. The Bogle family takes advantage of many unique growing regions across the state of California, Clarksburg and Lodi being the most famous. These fields are tended under Bogle’s watchful eye and the fruit harvested from them adds diverse and complex flavours to their wines.
Clarksburg is the AVA that Bogle calls home, farming there for over 100 years. The combination of the fertile clay and pea soil, coupled with warm days and cooling breezes from the San Francisco Bay, this is a wonderful growing region for many varietals including Merlot, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Petite Sirah and Riesling.
Clarksburg Chardonnay’s signature apple and pear notes flourish in the incredible aromas and first sips of this wine. The rich, round entry is full of fruit, including touches of tropical pineapple and guava. The elegant and creamy mouthfeel wraps around the fruit and leads to spicy notes of nutmeg and toasty vanilla, left behind by over 8 months of gaining in American oak. There is perfectly-balanced acidity, which makes sure that it finishes clean and fresh, making you ready for another sip. It’s a superb wine!
This Chardonnay comes from the Caves du Sieur d’Arques cooperative based in Limoux, just South of Carcassonne, in the Aude region of the Languedoc. The ‘Toques et Clochers’ Chardonnay was first produced in 1989 and takes its name from a dinner held every year. Each year, this charity dinner is cooked by a different celebrity chef (hence the chef’s hat – ‘toque’ in French) whilst the wine is auctioned and the proceeds used to restore the church bells of a different wine village (hence the ‘clochers’ which means church bell in French).
Limoux is a relatively new appellation (created in 2003), for red and white wines from the area around the town of Limoux, in the Pyrenean foothills of southern France. Historically this area has been better known for its sparkling wines, which are produced and sold under the Blanquette de Limouxand Cremant de Limoux appellation titles.
The Chardonnay “Toques et Clochers” is often called a baby Meursault.. And it’s no surprise: It’s a big, round Chardonnay with bright freshness that’s been aged in new oak barrels bearing many of the hallmarks of a lighter white Burgundy. Not really a wine to drink by itself.. this is a big, big wine to be enjoyed with food.
The Pieropan family has been producing wines in Soave since the 1860s. Indeed, they were the first to bottle a wine with the name Soave on the label, in the early 1930s.
The Soave Blend is arguably one of Italy’s most famous white wines. This crisp and fruity white wine, made mostly in the Venetian hills near Verona, is now enjoyed around the world, offering a simple and refreshing wine experience.
Calvarino takes its name, ‘little Calvary’, from the steepness of the slope and the difficulty this presents in working the vineyard. It has the basalt soil that is classic in this part of Soave and is planted with Garganega and Trebbiano di Soave. The Garganega gives structure and acidity to the wines, the Trebbiano di Soave perfume and richness of flavour. There are usually at least two harvests to ensure the grapes are picked at the best possible stage of ripeness. The vineyards are farmed organically. The vines are between 30 and 60 years old and are planted 200 to 300m above sea level, at a density of 3000 vines per hectare.
A pale straw yellow and restrained wine that surprises you with its almond blossom scents, and persistent fruit. The palate is dry, well balance and elegant, with tremendous length and finesse.
On the west side of Devon’s beautiful Exe Estuary, nestling in the foothills of the Haldon Hills, lies Kenton Vineyard. Planted in 2003 on an old farm, the south-facing slopes and sandy soil, together with the mild and sunny climate are ideal for growing vines and ripening grapes for wine production. This small, family-owned, boutique winery produces wines that sell out fast with every vintage release.
Bacchus is a German white grape variety that is perhaps most notable for the production of crisp white wines in England. It is a crossing of Müller-Thurgau and Silvaner, though some experts suggest that the cross included Riesling. Bacchus wines are fresh and aromatic, showing grapey, citrus characters. The cross was obtained in Pfalz, Germany in the 1930s, although was not sanctioned for use in commercial wines until the 1970s. Although it is most famous for its use in England, Bacchus is still planted in volume in Rheinhessen and Franken, where it occupies vineyards in locations which are too cold for the ubiquitous Riesling.
England produces some of the best expressions of Bacchus with the better results coming from cooler vineyards where yields are tightly controlled. Most growers aim for medium-sized yields, as Bacchus can overwhelm the palate if the grape’s flavour is too concentrated. Due to its herbaceous nature, the variety has been touted as England’s Sauvignon Blanc.
This is a highly aromatic, slightly off dry wine with classic Bacchus elderflower notes. Who knew England could produce such a fantastic white wine!