February's Recommendations


We rate our wines out of a 100-points scale.
Our reviews and recommendations are completely independent and we do not have any commercial affiliation with the importers and/or retailers listed.
Please note that prices are correct at the time of our tastings/reviews but are subject to change without us being notified.


Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage Blanc 2009 - 95pts

Champagne, France, Sparkling White, 12.5% abv, natural cork closure
50% Pinot Noir, 36% Chardonnay and 14% Meunier
Pairs nicely with: Oysters, dim-sum and sushi.
2009, after a cold start, ended up being an excellent vintage with the Pinot Noir proving to be the jewel in the crown and thus 50% of the wine is made from Pinot Noir, evident in the breadth and depth of the wine. Extraordinarily elegant and autolytic with notes of brioche, redcurrant and grilled nuts. A remarkable wine that demands reflection and demonstrates just how good this house can be.
£45 available from Tesco

Goring Estate Brut Rosé NV - 94pts

Sussex, England, Sparkling White, 12% abv, natural cork closure
96% Chardonnay, 4% Pinot Noir
Pairs nicely with: Aperitif, sushi, seafood.
The Goring wines are made by legendary winemaker Dermot Sugrue whose assured touch is present here; from the attractive, vibrant depth of colour on this wine to the layered aromas of redcurrant, rhubarb, custard and Pink Lady apples all held together by tight, elegant acidity. Long, focused and memorable.
£29.21 available from Strictly Wine

Sugrue The Trouble with Dreams Brut 2014 - 95 pts

Sussex, England, Sparkling White, 12% abv, natural cork closure
60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir
Pairs nicely with: Aperitif, nuts, cheese, seafood.
Sugrue is the personal project of Dermot Sugrue, the Wiston Estate winemaker who’s also behind a number of top English sparkling wines. This English fizz is an appealing light golden colour with evident bottle age and reveals lots of complexity and layers of stewed apple and spice on the nose and palate. There is a saline edge to the wine and a really pleasing structure and mouthfeel with a grilled nuts finish. An assured wine to linger over.
£38.19 available from Strictly Wine

Dry White

Greywacke Riesling 2017 - 89pts

Marlborough, New Zealand, Dry White, 12% alc, screwcap
100% Riesling
Pairs nicely with: Spicy food, especially Thai and Indian food.
Made by Kevin Judd (who used to be the winemaker at Cloudy Bay), this is an off-dry style of Riesling with 16g/l RS which is evident on the finish but well-balanced by crisp citrus acidity. The wine is full of crab apples, honeysuckle, apricot and tangerine with a long, almost savoury finish.
£18.00 available from The Wine Society

Viajero Sauvignon Blanc 2016 - 87pts

Chile, Dry White,
100% Sauvignon Blanc
Pairs nicely with: Goat’s cheese or just drink chilled as an aperitif
From Chile’s ocean-conditioned Leyda Valley, this new vintage Sauvignon has all the right varietal credentials: herb and capsicum aromas and a juicy, full-flavoured green bean quality on the palate finishing with a mouth-wateringly zesty twist of citrus. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.
£7.99 available Lidl

Lidl Winemakers Selection Pinot Gris 2017 - 87pts

Gisborne, New Zealand, Dry White
100% Pinot Gris
Pairs nicely with: Tapas, pizza and smoked salmon
From Gisborne on the eastern shores of New Zealand’s North Island, this is attractively fresh with an apple and pear ripeness on the mid-palate and an acidity that brings freshness and balance to the finish. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.
£5.79 available from Lidl

Outlook Bay Chardonnay 2017 - 86pts

Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand
100% Chardonnay
Pairs nicely with: White fish, moule marinières, dressed crab
Interestingly this Kiwi Chardonnay contains 10% Pinot Gris for extra texture, tempering the pineappley zing of the Chardonnay for a well-rounded, moreish and versatile style of dry white. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.
£6.99 available from Lidl

Terre Siciliane Grecanico 2014 - 85pts

Sicily, Italy, Dry White
100% Grecanico
Pairs nicely with: White fish, sashimi
Mainly made from Sicily’s Grecanico grape (with 15% other unspecified grape varieties), this is like a fresh, liquid fruit salad, a classically Mediterranean dry white with a hint of nuttiness behind it and an undertone of pine resin to boot. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.
£5.99 available from Lidl

Corte Alle Mura Vernaccia Di San Gimignano 2017 - 85pts

Tuscany, Italy
100% Vernaccia Di San Gimignano
Pairs nicely with: Shellfish, white fish, crab.
A poet once said that Tuscany’s Vernaccia Di San Gimignano kisses, licks, bites and stings. We’re not sure that we’d be that lyrical but it does have an appealing lick of freshness, a kiss of juicy appley fruit and a bite of refreshing dry acidity on the finish.  Who said The Wine Gang can’t wax lyrical? Part of the recently released New World wine tour.  
£6.99 available from Lidl

Dry Red

Value choice of the Month

Sir Ian Botham Wines The All-Rounder Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 - 88 pts

SEA, Australia, Dry Red, 13.5% alc, screwcap
100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Pairs nicely with: Lamb chops, rich ragu sauces or pizza.
From renowned English cricketer, Sir Ian Botham, comes this very juicy, deeply-coloured, soft and succulent red made from Cabernet Sauvignon. Full of ripe black fruits such as blackberry, bramble and cherry this is easy-drinking and joyful. Very good value too.
£8.49 available from The Pip Stop

Leconfield Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 - 90pts

Coonawarra, Australia, Dry Red, 14.5% alc, screwcap
100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Pairs nicely with: Roast lamb, sausages, game or beef Wellington.
Situated in the heart of the Coonawarra; famous for its red Terra Rossa soil is Leconfield, established in 1974. This is an elegant example of a Coonawarra Cab that boasts the beautiful notes of cassis and pepper that one expects along with finely grained tannins and a sprinkling of spice on the finish from 18 months spent maturing in oak (92% of which is French). A modern classic.
£17.00 available from The Wine Society

Marcel Lapierre Raisins Gaulois 2017 - 91 pts

Vin de France, Beaujolais, France, Dry Red, 12.5% alc, screwcap
100% Gamay
Pairs nicely with: Charcuterie and cheese.
This is a natural wine made from organic grapes by the acclaimed Beaujolais family; one of the pioneers of natural wine. Low intervention, minimal use of sulphur and natural yeasts result in a wine of quite breathtaking purity of red berry fruit, helped by the use of carbonic maceration. This is young, juicy, lively and utterly enjoyable with low alcohol to boot. A conversation starter.
£14.50 available from Buon Vino

Wine of the Month!!

Wine of the Month!!

Château de Chamilly Mercurey Clos la Perrière 2016 - 95 pts

Burgundy, France,13% alc, natural cork
100% Pinot Noir
Pairs nicely with: 1Game, duck or coq au vin.
The vineyard is managed following the principles of lutte raisonée, or sustainable viticulture, using organic preparations, which might in part be responsible for the incredible freshness of the fruit in this wine, as well as the fact that it is from the fabulous 2016 vintage. The nose is just ‘Wow’ with amazing purity of red berry fruits. This is long, elegant and lovely with fine tannins and subtle spice that embrace that surprisingly succulent red fruit. Excellent.
£28.72 available from Great Wines Direct and/or Strictly Wines

Berton Vineyard Shiraz Cabernet ‘Bonsai’ 2016 - 90 pts

High Eden, South Australia,14.5% alc, screwcap
84% Shiraz, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon
Pairs nicely with: Lamb, pulled beef or BBQ.
Bob Berton is both a fantastic winemaker and one of the nicest! Both his warmth and his passion run through his wines and they are all generously fruited yet well-balanced with well-judged tannins and oak use. This deep purple, youthful wine is not for the faint hearted but is full of luscious black fruit and perky cassis with vanilla and spice on the finish. A perfect wine for a winter’s day if you want to bring a smile to your face.  
£25.06 available from Great Wines Direct and/or Strictly Wines

Château de Ribautes Corbières 2016 - 86 pts

Corbières, Languedoc, France
Syrah, Grenache
Pairs nicely with: Sausages, grills, casseroles.
There’s an attractive spicy note in the aroma of this blend of 60% Syrah and 40% Grenache from the South of France, and the dark berry fruit is supple on the mid-palate, all the while tapering to a robust finish of firm acidity and gutsy tannins, making it the perfect partner for casseroles. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.  
£7.99 available from Lidl

Purple Heron Malbec 2013 - 87 pts

Coastal Region, South Africa
100% Malbec
Pairs nicely with: Barbecues (if you’re in South Africa), otherwise grills, pasta
This Cape Malbec has a distinctly perfumed, almost floral note on the nose, while the primary dark cherry fruit of the Malbec grape, also with a hint of Turkish Delight about it, finishes with a supple, almost glossy flourish. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.  
£7.99 available from Lidl

Value choice of the Month

Luna de Finca La Anita 2017 - 87 pts

Agrelo, Argentina
Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Alicante Bouschet
Pairs nicely with: Roast lamb with garlic and rosemary, duck breast
Still youthful, but nicely proportioned at a relatively modest 13% alcohol for Argentina, this Cabernet blend  shows good concentrated cassis flavours with a touch of bitter chocolate while its firm spine of acidity and muscular tannins demand tannin-soaking meat to absorb those tannins. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.  
£7.99 available from Lidl

Wine of the Month!!

Wine of the Month!!

The Second Fleet Shiraz 2017 - 87 pts

McLaren Vale, Australia
100% Shiraz
Pairs nicely with: Boeuf en daube, kebabs, sausages.
This is a no-holds-barred, full-throttle Aussie Shiraz that does what it says on the tin, i.e. delivers rich blackberry-scented fruit and vanilla oak in a concentrated, voluptuous package of powerful black fruit flavours, just about managing to hold the disparate elements together in a seamless whole. Part of the recently released New World wine tour.  
£9.99 available from Lidl

Sweet & Fortified

Michele Chiarlo Moscato d’Asti ‘Nivole’ 2018 - 90pts

Piedmont, Italy, Fortified, 5% ABC, screwcap
100% Moscato
Pairs nicely with: Fruit based puddings, tarte tatin.
Such a pretty wine with notes of ripe pear, tinned pear juice and apricot with sweetness and acidity well-balanced and an impressive length. A fantastic example of a Moscato d’Asti.  
£8.83 (35.5cl) available from Strictly Wine