Curious Case December 2022 - Reveal

Medium

The Curious Case is a 'mystery' case that changes every month whereby you find out what is in it when you receive it! Could be red, white, rosé, orange or sparkling from a classic region or a boutique producer in some remote far-flung region using indigenous rare varieties.

Christmas is the time of year when choices of wine tend to veer towards the traditional - Claret and Burgundy, Champagne and Port. Well, for this year's seasonal Curious Case we're definitely going with this sort of thing, but with our own characteristic twist. We've chosen traditional Christmas favourites but (with one notable exception) from areas you might not immediately think of. Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile? Pinot Noir from the Languedoc? A Sparkler from Oregon? A sticky from off the beaten track? A Vin Doux Naturel instead of Port? That's what we've put together. If you like traditional Christmas drinking, but are prepared to go a bit off-piste you won't be disappointed with this lot. They come with our wholehearted recommendation.

As always with our Curious Cases this is just a snapshot aimed to showcase some good quality, well-priced wines on the theme in question. We certainly hope it piques your interest because there's plenty more to explore in this vein.

£90.00 per case
free delivery, or collect from the shop.

What's in it?
As always with our Curious Case we don't reveal the content's until the end of the month, but here are a few clues to give you an idea about what's in store. Are you curious?

Medium



Wine #1 - A lively and charming, organic sparkler from near the Oregon coast in the USA.

Wine #2 - A sweet, luscious and crisp dessert wine from the Perigord region of South West France.

Wine #3 - A rich yet clean red Vin Doux Naturel made from Grenache around the French Mediterranean town of Banyuls, right on the Spanish border.

Wine #4 - A brilliantly inexpensive Languedoc Pinot Noir from an iconic producer.

Wine #5 - A fruit driven, but rounded Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon from the Colchagua Valley.

Wine #6 - Fresh, minerally and rounded Bourgogne Blanc from respected Côte de Beaune producer.

Bourgogne Blanc 'Terroir Noble', Vincent Girardin 2020

In a nutshell:
Fresh, minerally and rounded Bourgogne Blanc from respected producer Vincent Girardin.

The lowdown:
Named 'Terroir Noble' for a reason as the fruit for this approachable and well-made Bourgogne Blanc comes from the top communes of Meursault, Puligny and Chassagne-Montrachet. Along with some great fruit winemaker Eric Germain's philosophy is all about less intervention and producing wines with tension and elegance. Maturation is done in mostly used larger barrels so while there is some softness and slight oaky touches to the wine the freshness and purity of fruit stand out. Ripe citrus, stone fruit and flinty, minerally aromas lead onto a clean and elegant palate with softened edges and a creamy richness and buttery finish.

When to drink:
Perfect with seafood in a butter sauce, seared scallops, also works well with white meat and poultry or mushroom risotto.

Moulin de Gassac Pinot Noir 2021

In a nutshell:
A brilliantly inexpensive Languedoc Pinot Noir from an iconic producer.

The lowdown:
The warm climate of the Languedoc might not be the natural home of Pinot Noir, but in the hands of Mas de Daumas Gassac such concerns have been successfully put aside. This is light and fresh easy drinking, but with dark cherry and vegetal notes that mark out a good example of this grape. It certainly matches up to the producer's hallowed reputation.

When to drink:
This is a Pinot Noir that's great if slightly chilled. It's a good food pairing with poultry dishes that aren't too rich.

Organic

Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

In a nutshell:
A fruit driven, but rounded Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon from the Colchagua Valley.

The lowdown:
Chile's Colchagua valley, about 100 miles or so south of the capital Santiago is where some of the country's best Cabernet Sauvignons come from. And for this wine Montes' vineyards in the Apalta and Marchigüe areas are the source of the fruit. After fermentation in stainless steel just over half was aged in a mix of new and used oak barrels for a period of 12 months with the aim of giving the right balance between fruit driven approachability and a rounded, mature structure. There are plenty of ripe black fruit aromas on the nose with a few richer notes such as figs and cassis. In addition a layer of spiciness of dark chocolate on the palate makes it a very satisfying mouthful.

When to drink:
With plenty of upfront fruit it makes great drinking by itself. For food pairings lamb, rich game and ripe cheeses are brought to mind here.

Suitable for Vegans

Sokol Blosser Evolution Sparkling Brut NV

In a nutshell:
A lively and charming, organic sparkler from near the Oregon coast in north western USA.

The lowdown:
Alex and Alison Sokol Blosser are passionate about making their wines in a sustainable way and all of their cuvées amply demonstrate this approach. Their Evolution Sparkling is a blend of several grape varieties led by Muller-Thurgau, Semillon and Riesling which might not be the usual suspects in a sparkling wine but is certainly none the worse for that. It's made in the traditional method from a different vintages and wines with different levels of malolactic fermentation and oak treatments. The result of this is a wine, which while nicely dry and vibrant on the tongue, has a delightful fragrance and citrus aromatics. Zesty citrus, pear, white peach and green apple aromas are followed by a mineral and subtly creamy dry palate.

When to drink:
Clean and crisp, it's perfect on its own, as an apertif with canapes and even fruit based desserts.

Organic

Banyuls, Bila-Haut, M. Chapoutier - 50cl 2018

In a nutshell:
A rich yet clean red Vin Doux Naturel made from Grenache around the French Mediterranean town of Banyuls, right on the Spanish border.

The lowdown:
A speciality of southern France Vins Doux Naturel are fortified sweet wines and if you think along lines of Port with these you'll be heading in the right sort of area. Made from 100% Grenache which has been aged in vat for eight months after vinification and fortification this sumptuous red is more of a dessert wine in style. The aromas have a freshness and subtlety about them with a touch of cocoa sitting among the rich, ripe black fruits and stewed fruits. The fine tannins give it a silky feel in the mouth while the well judged acidity leaves it clean and fresh and it moves to the lingering finish.

When to drink:
With an opulent feel it's the sort of thing that rounds off a meal really well alongide things like blue cheese, chocolate fondant desserts, or rich fruit cake.

Domaine de Grange Neuve Monbazillac - 50cl 2018

In a nutshell:
A sweet, luscious and crisp dessert wine from the Perigord region of South West France.

The lowdown:
Monbazillac is a small town south of Bergerac in the Dordogne which has a long history of producing sweet wines. They bear similarities with the wines of Sauternes which is not too far away both in the grape varieties used and the way the wines are made, but don't, on the whole, carry the same price tag. Made from 80% Semillon with a little Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle the grapes are hand harvested at a late stage of maturity, in three successive 'triage', to ensure that only the most mature grapes are picked and after fermentation the wine is matured for 24 months. It makes a fabulous, sweet and luscious wine, the nose is fresh with classic botrytis marmalade and ripe nectarine. The flavours on the palate are richer and nicely honeyed with a finishing twist of bitter orange. It has a great backbone of fine acidity leading to a pleasingly clean finish.

When to drink:
In France it would be served as an apéritif but it's also really good with paté or blue cheeses such as Roquefort.

Suitable for Vegans

Curious Case December 2022 - Christmas Curiosities

Mixed Cases (53)

Thumb

Curious case february 2023 - reveal

Thumb

Curious case march 2023 - reveal

Thumb

Curious case january 2023 - reveal

Thumb

Curious case december 2022 - reveal