Wines of the week: Old Vines Carignan 2008; Domaine de L'Espigouette Plan de Dieu Cotes Du Rhone Villages 2009; Saint Mont Le Passé Authentique 2010
Terry Kirby selects the best bottles to buy
Sunday 29 April 2012
Old Vines Carignan 2008
Yet another example of how New World growers can create something different from workhorse European grapes, this comes from vines of around 70 years old in Chile's Maule Valley. But this is no single varietal blockbuster – it has subtle depth of flavour, with tastes of dark chocolate and baked fruits such as plums. Ageing in French oak barrels adds complexity and the smoothly harmonious whole would be fine with any roasted meats or a big casserole. £11.99, Marks & Spencer
Domaine de L'Espigouette Plan de Dieu Cotes Du Rhone Villages 2009
Plan de Dieu is a relatively new appellation in the southern Rhône, close to the superstar areas of Gigondas and Vacqueyras. This blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mouvèdre shares many of their esteemed qualities – herby aromas, rich and concentrated flavour on the palate, with a spicy finish – but at a slightly more sensible price. Very good with any tomato-based Mediterranean dishes or grilled lamb. £9.75, goedhuis.com (min purchase 12 bottles)
Saint Mont Le Passé Authentique 2010
The Saint Mont co-operative in south-west France is rightly concerned about the preservation of obscure and indigenous grape varieties such as Gros Manseng, Petit Courbu and Arrufiac which make up this lovely blend specially produced for Waitrose. Like all their whites, it is refreshing, crisply drinkable with almost any fish dishes and delivers a fascinating and very distinctive combination of citrus and tropical fruit flavours. £7.11 (until May 8; normally £9.99), waitrose.com
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