Louis Latour Pinot Noir 'Valmoissine' 2015

Pinot Noir Domaine de Valmoissine Louis Latour There are two theories regarding the ‘Pinot’ name. One is that it came about because their bunches are similar in shape to a pine cone (pinot in French). It may derive, however, from a place name in France such as Pinos or Pignols from where cuttings were obtained….

Fortnum & Mason Brut Reserve Vintage Champagne

Britain’s ‘prosecco boom’ could be over. Sales of sparkling wine in the UK have fallen for the first time since 2012, according to new figures. New sales numbers from the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, reported by the Financial Times, show sparkling wine sales in Britain fell by 5% in 2019. The drop is equivalent…

Laurent-Perrier Grand Siecle Champagne

Laurent-Perrier Grand Siecle is a blend of three different vintages of premier cru champagnes – it is classified as NV as a result but it’s so much more than that. The magic here is in the winemaking; the blending of different vintages to create something which is greater than the sum of its parts. I…

Picpoul de Pinet ‘La Font Française’ Ormarine 2017

Picpoul used to be cheap, and unusual to find outside France until a few years ago when it cropped up more frequently, particularly on gastro-pub wine lists. Prices rose as it became more popular. My most read article of all time with hundreds of views, is Sainsbury’s Baron de Guers Picpoul de Pinet which is…

Chablis Vielles Vignes, Closerie des Alisieres

Chablis Vielles Vignes, Closerie des Alisieres is good wine from a respected producer. Good value for money, Auchan have a magnum of this at €17.99 – which is a bit of a steal, and almost makes a trip to France worth it. Tasting notes: Crisp Chablis with flavours of citrus, white peach and some minerality. Wine…

Gevrey-Chambertin, Les Sentiers de Belene

Gevrey-Chambertin is one of the most prestigious and revered names in Burgundy, often referred to as ‘the king of Burgundy’. The appellation is entirely for red wine specifically my favourite red wine grape: Pinot Noir, and boasts 9 Grand crus, the most of any Cote d’Or communes; it also has 26 Premier crus vineyards. It…

Cuvee Royale Crémant de Limoux, Waitrose

How does Waitrose Crémant de Limoux compare with other fizz at similar price points?  Sparkling wines from Limoux, nestling in the foothills of the Pyrenees are said to pre-date champagne. In 1990 the term Crémant was introduced for non-Champagne sparkling wines in France, an AOC for more “modern” or internationally-styled sparkling wines. AOC regulations dictate…

Languedoc, Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference

  I have been looking at how Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range (which teams up with good producers and releases own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced) compares with Sainsbury’s ‘Premium’, Taste the Difference range. As a punter, it pays to seek out the maker’s name. Few winemakers are more consistent than Paul Mas. My…

Saint Mont – Tesco Finest

More from Tesco’s ‘Finest’ range of interesting and reasonably priced wine. My three journeys through and around France so far this year have taken me far and wide and reminded me of the vast difference in hospitality that this country offers. From jovial bonhomie to total hostility: I’ve had it all. Often in the same…

Cotes de Gascogne – Tesco Finest

Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range is doing a good job of teaming up with good producers and releasing own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced.  good wine. Tasting notes: From the ‘Cotes de Gascogne’ region of South West France. Crisp, fresh flavours of green apple & citrus. Dry and faintly aromatic. Good value for money….

Gaillac – Tesco Finest

I’ve been working my way through the Tesco ‘finest’ range for the last few months and am reaching the conclusion that they are generally very good; a well thought out, appealing range of wines from decent producers at reasonable prices. Tasting notes: Gaillac is from the South West of France. Crisp, fresh flavours of citrus,…

Paul Mas Sparkling Picpoul Chardonnay

When he started out in the late 1990s, Mas set out to make wines to export: “Selling wines to the French is like trying to sell hamburgers to the Americans.”  Consequently, he exports, to 58 countries, 97 per cent of the 20 million bottles he produces annually. An alternative to Prosecco, this wine appeals because of…