EASTER RED WINES

EASTER RED WINES image

By Rose Murray Brown MW    Published in The Scotsman 8 April 2017

 

Top Twelve red wines from around the world for serving this Easter - to suit all budgets (under £10, £15 & £25).

 

UNDER £10

Swartland, South Africa:  LEEUWENKUIL BUSHVINE CINSAULT 2016 (£8 reduced from £10 in April Marks & Spencer)
Winemaker Pieter Carsten shows us the wild side of the Cape with this cherry-fruited, very spicy Cinsault made from unirrigated dry-farmed old bush vines in up-and-coming Swartland region north of Cape Town.  If you normally drink Cotes du Rhone, you will enjoy this great value red at its offer price: 12.5%


Aldi Pinot Noir reviewed by Rose Murray Brown MWCentral Otago, New Zealand:  TE HAUPAPA PINOT NOIR 2016 (£8.99 Aldi)
***STAR VALUE BUY***

By far the best value Kiwi Pinot in our tasting – and it is rare to see Otago wines at under a tenner.  It is not typical of Otago Pinots, definitely on the light side, but its ripe cherry and strawberry aromas, soft elegant palate would make it a convincing match with Easter lamb: 14%    


Carinena, Spain:  PANIZA GRAN RESERVA 2009 (£9.99 Virgin Wines www.virginwines.co.uk)
Little known Carinena region in Aragon (just southeast of Rioja) is home to this international blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha and Tempranillo.  With 24 months in oak and five years bottle age, this is a serious mature blend now drinking at its peak with a soft approachable palate and succulent fruits.  Good value if you are used to paying Rioja prices:  13.5%


Aldi Pata Negra wine review by Rose Murray Brown MWValdepenas, Spain:  PATA NEGRA GRAN RESERVA 2008 Bodegas Las Llanos (£5.99 Aldi)
Same grape as Rioja, but in Valdepenas in central Spain the climate is harsher and Tempranillo tends to be a bit more rustic and less elegant.  Expect spicy smoky aromas, robust sturdy palate, vanilla notes from extended oak ageing – suit anyone looking for a cheap oaky red to serve with roast lamb: 13%                 


Puglia, Southern Italy:  NEGROAMARO 2015 (£8 Marks & Spencer)
***STAR BUY***

Proof of what value you can get from Puglia.  This juicy unoaked red made from 20 year old local Negroamaro vines has very intense plummy chocolate aromas, blackcurranty flavours with spicy undertones.  Mouthfilling powerful – so much fruit for your money.  It was bottled unfiltered, so I recommend decanting it to show it at its best: 13.5%


Lidl Primitivo Puglia Italy wine review by Rose Murray Brown MWPuglia, Southern Italy: PRIMITIVO MASSERIA METRANO 2014 (£7.99 Lidl)
We tasted our way through six Primitivos under £10 in this tasting and Lidl’s example was scored as offering best value.  So damsony and plummy, it almost smells like a port blend, but it has a very baked raisiny palate so typical of Puglia: 14%


UNDER £15
                              

Victoria, Australia:  INNOCENT BYSTANDER SYRAH 2015 (£14.99 www.rannochscott.co.uk; www.thewinereserve.co.uk; Fine Wine Company; Cornelius Wine, Edinburgh)
Violets, raspberries and white pepper undertones, this Yarra Valley Shiraz has a dose of white Viognier added to lift the scents, a practice they use in Rhone’s Cote Rotie appellation.  This is punchy and weighty, but our tasters thought it a ‘very elegant Rhone-like Syrah’: 14%

                                                 
Chateau Moulin du Bourg The Wine Society reviewed by Rose Murray Brown MWBordeaux, France:  CHATEAU MOULIN DU BOURG 2012 (£11.75 www.thewinesociety.com)
This Listrac-based Medoc chateau was once known as Fourcas Dumont, renamed by its new owners the famous Borie family, who have renovated vineyards and are making beautifully elegant classic claret.  Plummy, smooth and soft from its mainly Merlot-base with a little Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot adding spicy undertones.  Good value: 13.5%


Umbria, Italy:  MONTEFALCO ROSSO 2012 Scacciadiavoli (£11.50 www.thewinesociety.com)
Named ‘cast out the devils’ after a C19 exorcist who lived near this vineyard.  This unusual Perugian red would suit anyone who usually drinks Chianti as it has a large dose of Sangiovese grape, blended alongside local Sagrantino and Merlot.  Loved the cherry and blackberry aromas, soft oaking, but the firm tannins mean it should be matched with roast beef or a well-hung steak: 14.5%


UNDER £25

Geographe, Western Australia:  MAZZA CINQUE 2009 (£22.50 Berry Bros & Rudd www.bbr.com)
Very popular at our recent tasting – damson, plum aromas and a soft smoky palate ideal for serving with lamb.  This clever blend of three Portuguese grapes (Touriga Nacional, Sousao, Tinta Cao) and two Spanish (Tempranillo, Graciano) grown in Geographe’s Mediterranean climate near the Indian Ocean is made by Mazza, a small family winery with a very unusual range of wines for Australia: 14%


Nero di Troia Valvona & Crolla reviewed by Rose Murray Brown MWMount Barker, Western Australia:  PLANTAGENET MOUNT BARKER CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2012 (£19.50 www.thewinesociety.com)
Combines the intense rich ripe blackcurranty fruit you expect from Australia with a lovely elegance.  Cabernet grown on gravelly Marri soils, named after the famous Marri red gum trees which grow in this cooler inland region.  Minty eucalyptus undertones with smooth fine tannins.  Superb: 14%


Puglia, Southern Italy:  NERO DI TROIA CANACE 2013 Cantina Diomede (£21.95 Valvona & Crolla www.valvonacrolla.co.uk)
***STAR BUY***

Uva di Troia is Puglia’s third most planted grape after Primitivo and Negroamaro.  This is a stunning example of Troia’s grape made near Bari from partial drying on the vine, followed by French oak maturation with 15% Aglianico blended it to add acid.  Soft velvety, coffee & liquorice, powerful intense and spicy: 13.5%.


Join Rose’s Alsace & Baden wine tasting in Edinburgh Tuesday 25 April £42 www.rosemurraybrown.com