January is always a busy time in the tasting calendar and this year seems especially frantic – I went to three very different events yesterday.
The major one was the New Zealand Annual Trade Tasting at Lords and it was an excellent tasting, offering some 700 wines to try.
The standard, as you might expect, was very high with excellent wines from a wide array of grape varieties and regions. I will mention some of the more interesting over the next few weeks, so keep coming back.
However, three white wines stuck out as being especially enjoyable and delicious and I thought I would share those with you straight away.
Firstly a wonderful wine from a producer that I have written about before:
Craggy Range Te Muna Road Vineyard Riesling 2008
A captivating wine that is amazingly attractive and alluring from the first sniff of the lime drenched, floral aromas.
The palate is fresh, zesty, pure and refreshing with taut lime citrus mingling with a softer tangerine character.
The minerality and clean acidity provides a backbone making this a beautifully elegant wine that has a long and thrilling finish.
I cannot wait to try it with some Thai food – 92 points.
Around £12.99 – for stockists contact Louis Latour.
Visit Craggy Range here.
Secondly two Sauvignon Blancs from a producer that I do some work for, but this is my genuine and unsolicited opinion:
Villa Maria Clifford Bay Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2009
An incredibly concentrated and powerful Sauvignon – not for the fainthearted.
The aromas are of rich, ripe passionfruit and green pepper with little flourishes of lime and white pepper spice.
The palate is similarly rich with an almost creamy ripe texture balanced by the underlying clean, fresh citrus acidity. The ripeness makes it feel soft rather than crisp which makes for a delicious, incredibly drinkable and hedonistic wine.
This won the popular vote on the night for the wine of the show – 92 points.
Available from Oddbins and Sainsburys at £12.99.
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Sauvignon Blanc 2009
If you have found some Kiwi Sauvignons to lack a bit of their former zing of late, then this wine is for you.
The aromas are bright and fresh passionfruit, lime and green capsicum with tropical guava-like touches.
The palate is also fresh and zesty with a little softness making it just off-crisp. This is very stylish and joyous drinking with or without food.
This won the Sauvignon Blanc Trophy at the International Wine & Spirits Competition 2009 – 90 points.
Available from Tesco and Majestic at £9.99.
Visit Villa Maria here.