Once considered to be one of the four leading wine regions of Tuscany, this is a rare gem, with only 500 cases produced annually. Selvapiana is better known
for its superb Chianti Rufina and extra virgin olive oil, but they lease six hectares of vines in the foothills of the Apennines to make this predominantly from Sangiovese, with some Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. This wine was a revelation — beautifully balanced, smooth and completely ready to drink. A bargain at this price.
To call Moulin-à-Vent Beaujolais is about as helpful as describing white truffles as fungus — this is the grandest and most prestigious part of the region. With vines averaging 50 years, this vintage is one of the best in recent times, with lots of freshness, precision and focus. It has been under new ownership for the past decade and the new proprietors are aiming to become the very best in this classification. The Gamay grape becomes more like Burgundy the longer it is kept but this bottle can be enjoyed now or in a decade’s time.
Despite its exuberant label, this is a seriously exciting wine. With hints of spice
and sharp apples, it has remarkable depth with a tiny spritz at the end. It is no surprise this wine is popular in Michelin restaurants around the globe. Perhaps it is that combination of intense flavour, which is still refreshing, that makes it so delicious. Ideal with seafood or oysters.
One of the few Châteaux that can claim Joan of Arc once stayed there, Chinon has made a comeback in recent years, with a more robust style replacing the earlier lighter version. Under new ownership since 2005, this is definitely one of the rising stars of the appellation and also possesses one of the finest chateau hotels (Hotel du Coudray) in the region. The Loire is one of the only regions where Cabernet Franc comprises up to 100% of the grape variety used. This example has far more depth than usual, with its customary “lead pencil” flavour. Ideal for early drinking with powerful stews or red meat.