For some reason, all orders received today have been for Italian wines. Very strange. All the reds have sold one way or another and I even had an enquiry about a wine I haven't stocked for some time. Having tasted most of the Italian range quite recently, I realised there was one I hadn't: Marco Maci's Copertino 2001 "Duca d'Antene". A recent bottle of the 2004 "Fra Diavolo" was big with sweet, slightly raisined fruit, exactly what I want from a Primitivo (or, come to that, a Zinfandel) but the 100% Negroamaro "Duca" should offer something quite different. Time to pull the cork? Actually it's only ten past five so I am getting ahead of myself! In the words of an indifferent Hollywood actor, I'll be back.
The moratorium is over. Decanter’s December issue has been published and I can announce our successes in the recent tasting undertaken by their Rhône expert, Matt Walls who has recently returned from a year and a half in the region. If you look on Decanter.com today (November 2020), you will see a link to ‘Top Côtes du Rhône wines under £20’. What the article doesn’t tell you is that the brief of its writer was to taste and rate wines from across the valley in that price range and that the top scoring white wine was actually a Ventoux. No prizes for guessing that it was Château Juvenal’s 2019 ‘Ribes de Vallat’ Blanc , awarded 91 points, which, at £12.60 is also the best value of any of the white wines on the list: 'From 30- to 40-year-old vines grown on granite south-facing slopes; half of the wine is matured for six months in demi-muid leaving no overt oakiness to the aromatics. Full-bodied, rich and opulent style, very ripe and fulsome. Some mango and pineapple juice. Unmist