The final part covers the Alianca wines from Portugal, a tempting Tempranillo and massive Malbec from Argentina, a stunning Kiwi dry Riesling, unctuous French Viognier and Greek Agiorgitiko red....
|Alabastro, Alianca Alentejano||This reasonably priced Portuguese wine is made in the Alentejano region, which covers almost a third of the country. The wine is made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Aragonez and Trincadeira Preta, some of which you may be familiar with. It offers a ruby colour, with and intense but youthful fragrance. The mouth leads on to blueberries and hedgerow fruit, with a residual smoothness from the oak ageing. Pairs well with grilled meat, codfish and fresh cheeses.||£8.02|
|Reserva Tinto, Alianca Bairrada||This wine is made in the central region of Portugal, which offers a climate that is located near the Atlantic, this offers a moderating effect on the temperature and region as a whole. Viticulture has existed since at least the 10th Century, and used to be blended with the port wines of the Douro. This wine offers a firm structure made of local grape varieties, its strong tannins and spicy nature blend well with meat dishes, such as stew or lamb.||£7.61|
|Bramare, Malbec||Their winery is situated in the upper Mendoza Valley, where the river is half-way through its journey from the Andes mountains to the eastern plains at altitudes of between 800m and 1,100 m which is ideal for growing Malbec. After visiting Argentina in 1989, Californian trail-blazer Paul Hobbs became deeply interested in both the terroir and Argentine culture, noticing the unique potential for Malbec and other varietals in the region. After meeting two kindred spirits, Andrea Marchiori and Luis Barraud, they founded Viña Cobos in 1997 and since then there has been no looking back. Utilising gnarly old vines, careful vineyard selection, very low yields and an unerring empathy for the raw materials, Viña Cobos craft intense yet balanced wines that showcase the elegance and beauty of this region. The wines from Cobos have branched into four different brands – Felino, Bramare appellation, Bramare Single Vineyard and the super premium Cobos. Binding all of the wines from Viña Cobos is the true identity of each variety and the unique terroir of Mendoza, truly world class wines from a world class producer. In brief, the 2010 grape harvest in Mendoza was characterized by a decrease in volume, lower alcohol potential and higher acidity, if compared to the previous one. Overall, a dry year with very healthy grapes. Inky, dense violet in colour, this Malbec offers a fine balance of poise and power. The nose brims with raspberries, anise, cherries and black pepper notes, while on the palate, the full-bodied impression carries flavours of cassis, red liquorice, figs and hints of smoke. A long finish leaves the mouth enveloped in big, chewy tannins. This wine goes like a stunningly with slow-roasted leg of lamb.||£27.11|
|Tempranillo, Zuccardi, Mendoza||Familia Zuccardi combines forward thinking with a deeply rooted wine culture to craft wines of unique quality and identity. Innovation is their trademark and Sebastian Zuccardi, the 3rd generation of the family, is leading the way. New plantings are vital to their quest for quality and the Uco Valley is the focus for the future. Already these high altitude plantings have proven their worth with Familia Zuccardi's Q Malbec coming top of the list of renowned Argentinian wine critic Fabricio Portelli's Top 100 Best Wines from Argentina. This is one of the mist exciting producers to work with and the wines are reaching new heights with every vintage. The hand picked grapes arrive at the winery towards the end of March. They are destemmed and a part of the production is crushed with majority remaining as whole berries. There is a pre-fermentation cold maceration followed by fermentation at a controlled temperature of 25- 28 C and a classic maceration for 20 days with daily remontage and delestage. A stunning example that will worry those greedy Riojan’s! Dark and concentrated with silky strawberry and violet fruit character, soft tannins and nice charred oak. Supple tannins and vibrant acidity complete the picture. At its best with lamb. At its best with lamb or consider pairing with tapas, pork, grilled or roasted entrees.||£17.11|
|Pegasus Bay, Bel Canto Dry Riesling||Established in 1970, Pegasus Bay is still a family run operation in the Wairapaira area of New Zealand. The Bel Canto Riesling is something a bit special: 40% of the grapes used have botrytis, but the wine is fermented in barrel back to dryness. The end result is 14% abv, but full of punchy lime aromas with a rich stone fruit and citrus mouth feel. A little different, but oh so lovely…||£17.08|
|Mont Rocher Viognier||Southern France, with its multifarious regions, indigenous grapes, cultures and traditions is home to some of the most exciting, characterful wines in the world at present. Mont Rocher is a collection of wines produced from indigenous varieties, produced in a style that lets them clearly express their varietal typicity and sense of place. Pure, authoritative packaging that lets the wines do the talking meets delicious, well balanced wines that offer a taste of the real France. The Languedoc grape harvest of 2012 was a record-breaker: with crops down worldwide this year, the southern French region's estimated 11.7 million hectolitres (figures from October 1, 2012) was an all-time low. Picked at optimum ripeness at night to preserve the fresh aromas. A haunting honeysuckle and apricot aroma and rich, almost unctuous palate that is somehow still dry, tangy and refreshing. Matches well with pasta and fruit de mer.||£7.92|
|Boutari Nemea||A classical style of wine from the appellation of Nemea in southern Greece. This lovely medium bodied wine is produced from the famed red grape, Agiorgitiko (St.George). This wine is ruby with touches of tawny in colour, and offers an approachable nose. The palate offers plum, dark red fruit and cinnamon and has a velvety mouth feel. This wine has won numerous international awards and is well matched with red meat and full fat cheeses.||£9.07|