A Very Wine Weekend
Reds to the Fore
Straccali Chianti Classico, Riserva 2004, 13.5%, €24.40 Karwig Wines
This ruby red gem is 90% Sangiovese with intense aromas. Easy drinking and Very Highly Recommended. Fruity for sure but very well balanced indeed, excellent matching acidity. Sip it on its own or with food (stews, pastas, poultry and fred meats are all recommended). A very generous wine, elegant and palate friendly with a long finish.
Nugan Alfredo Dried Grape Shiraz 2012 (Australia), 14.5%, €19.99, SuperValu
This is a highly rated wine, made in Amarone style from partially dried grapes and has spent 12 months in French and US oak. Darkly coloured it has very inviting fruit aromas. No shortage of fruit on the palate, some spice too; rich, with good depth of flavour, and quite intense; it is full bodied, very well balanced and dry to extra dry; tannins are refined and it has a long finish. Very Highly Recommended.
Stellar Winery Merlot 2013, South Africa, 13.5%, €15.00 Bradley’s, North Main Street, Cork
You immediately notice the healthy sheen on this ruby coloured wine and the nose has pretty simple direct fruit aromas. Medium bodied with lovely fruit flavours, soft and juicy and tannins have a slight grip. This is a really well balanced wine with a long dry finish. Highly Recommended.
Stellar, in the Western Cape. produce organic fair-trade wines with no added sulphites, vegan friendly too. The Indian Rubber ducks, featured on the front label, form “a highly efficient pest-control squad”. Pairing recommendations: pasta, lamb, beef.
Chateau Respide Medeville 2011, (Graves, France), 13.5%, €15.30 in Graves.
According to Hugh Johnson, this is one of the better producers in Graves for both red and white. The blend here is Cabernet Sauvignon (60%) and Merlot, all hand-picked. A surprising nose here, hints of spice and vanilla, even traces of anise, and that lively red fruit is also prominent on the palate. It is quite complex with great depth of flavour and a long dry finish. Glad I bought more than one of these last June while visiting the local Maison des Vins. Not sure you can get this in Ireland but Very Highly Recommended if you do come across it.