Made from younger vines, this is the second wine from Cakebread, one of the greatest Californian chardonnays. Located in the coastal region near the Napa Valley, this has more richness than the traditionally leaner white Burgundies of France but is in no way cloying or heavy. Aged in French oak, and less than half the price of its grander relative, it is a perfect introduction to the joys of New World Chardonnay.
This family-owned estate is from Friuli in north east Italy, near the border with Slovenia and Austria. Made exclusively from the Pinot Noir grape, it is delightfully fresh with a lovely clean texture – more like a high quality Beaujolais than red Burgundy. This is an exceptionally good price for such a well-made low yield wine with its unobtrusive structure. It would be ideal to drink with any light food or simply by itself.
Manoella is an exciting dry red blend of four different local grape varieties grown in the Pinhão Valley of the Douro, which is also the heart of Port production in Portugal. Owned by Jorge Serôdio Borges and his wife Sandra Tavares, Jorge is the fifth generation of his family to make wine in this location. They are complex and robust wines, which have hints of fruitcake flavours and are made for equally hearty foods. Although ready to drink now, they have sufficient structure to last for many years. Ideal if you like well-structured southern Rhône wines.
This Northern Rhone style red is from an award-winning family run vineyard in the Paarl district of South Africa’s Cape region. The balance and purity of the fruit is remarkable; it has more complexity than many other New World versions. Corney & Barrow are exclusive importers of Nelson wines in the UK. It has broad shoulders but is absolutely delicious.