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Wine Reviews

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Terra Serena – Piu Rabosello.

Jamie guzzled on the bottle of nearly flat sparkling water, the heat on the midday sun having a massive effect on his thirst.

Mark threw him a basket of strawberries, some with earthy dirt still clinging to the sides.

Jamie attacked the red fruit with aplomb, devouring three in one bite, replete with the calyxes still attached.

“I need the roughage too. Haven’t pooed in the guts of a week,” Jamie offered.

The first live interview of ‘I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here’ got off to a rocky start.

Wine Description.

This is light bubbles in a glass! Fresh, light and easy on the eye. It has bubbles but they don’t hit your nose as you sample it from the glass. The colour is strawberry, and darker than I thought it would be initially. Taste wise it is unassuming and subtle – there is a minerality in the aftertaste that leaves you wanting more!

For food pairings, I would recommend going with something spicy as a compliment to its freshness.

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Oliver and Greg’s Zinfandel Rose Review.

The empty bottle told its own tale. Tanya had guzzled it in her thirst for fulfillment.

Crossing the desert, she looked exhausted.

“How did you manage it on your own? With those strawberry jam shoes on?” asked Jack, her concerned father reeking of sweet plum.

“Crossing the Connemara desert in the midday Irish sun was tough,” she admitted.

“I was being sarcastic honey,” he replied. “It’s only a kilometre where you crossed.”

Wine Description.

Strawberry, strawberry, strawberry! Beautiful red fruit off the nose, mixed with a smoothness I did not expect from a Rose. It mellows like a red wine in the finish, bringing hints of jam and honey through. It also has rounds of plum, not only in the colour, but in the initial bursts of fruit on first sip. A delightful wine to chill with.

I would recommend pairing this with red meat dishes, complimenting the sweet and smoothness of the wine. This might be contradictory to some people’s palate, but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. It truly is an extraordinary mix.

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Havalos Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 Review.

Nadine looked luciously upon the bowl of dried raisins, cranberries and smoke fuelled pepper lemon fruit.

This was dangled in front of her after 37 hours of TV deprived starvation of 12 contestants.

Only two remained.

Lucy sat back, comfortable knowing she was going to win.

Nadine was weak and teetering with fragility.

Until she tipped the bowl over Lucy’s head. And she gorged on the grub on her face.

Wine Description.

This wine is unassuming and unpretentious. It says hello, you say hello back and an hour later you realise that this is something that packs a punch without being loud.

The wine is bold yet light in colour. It is dry on the finish, lingering long on the sides of your palate ten seconds after consumption.

It has light tastes of lemon and orange peel, but the dominant taste is of cranberry, blackberry and pepper.

It is beautifully subtle.

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Dragonfly – Chenin Blanc 2019

Olivia grasped the metallic handle, carefully tipping the popcorn, sprinkled lightly with butter, into the large lemon coloured bowl.
She had tried something experimental in the heats, mixing honey into in the hot oil. This had infused a spectacular corn, winning over the judges thus far.
But now, she had added a final ingredient. Elderflower.
The judges weren’t smiling like before, but were running for buckets.

Wine Description. 

This is a delicate wine with light fruits, that I was not expecting to enjoy so much. This was chilled nicely and was a cooling tonic after a warm mug of tea. What dominated this wine for me, was the lingering sense of butter mixed with lemon in the aftertaste. All I could think about was going for a bag of popcorn to compliment it! It is certainly moreish. As you have a second glass, you find more balance and stability in the aftertaste.

Pair this wine with cheeses or even a curry.

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Principato – Pinot Grigio 2019

Agnes pronounced the list in front of her, carefully taking her time with the “ch” and “ck” sounds of peach and apricot.
Her Mum Dorothy, tapped her foot on the oak floor, sucking on a lemon and lime sweet.
Agnes was learning new words from her 11-year-old peers, and Dorothy wanted to teach her how to speak properly to them.
Her teacher, Malachy, wasn’t convinced that these sounds were the best ones to start with.
“I want her to be able to say Cooking Itch!”
“Why Dorothy?” asked Malachy.

Wine Description.

This is a playful and easy drinking Pinot Grigio. It has an initial drying taste of lime and oak, that lingers and mellows. In the aftertaste you get stone fruit, such as peach and apricot. This could be easily enjoyed whilst cooking and even afterwards too.I would suggest pairing this with salmon, oily fish or shellfish.

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Viento Norte – Sauvignon Blanc 2018.

Fernando picked up his shotgun from the earthy soil, his haze blurred by hours of supping
homemade hooch. Getting hit by fruit at 3am on the bonce wasn’t normal.
He swore that he saw the horse flinging a lemon, the pig throw a grapefruit and the donkey
thrusting a melon. It was dark though and he was unsteady on his feet.
Making his way indoors, he heard movement by the barn. Sheila, the gnarly chicken, had a
green apple in her mouth.
This was Animal Farm, Spanish style

Wine Description.

This is a simple yet elegant Chilean Sauvignon Blanc, that packs a punch with multiple subtle flavours and minerality. First, off the nose are the hints of melon and grapefruit, quickly followed by mild green apple and it has a lingering finish of an earthy texture. This wine is far too easy to drink as you try to figure out its complexities and what flavours everyone else gets. My wife got

I would recommend pairing this wine with seafood or a mild curry.

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Santa Luz – Alba Sauvignon Blanc 2020.

Niamh steadied her hand holding the lemon, waiting for the hooter to go off.

Making an alternative mojito in world record time, she had to be quicker than the previous record of 31.4 seconds.

She scraped lemon peel, squashed sugar syrup, green apple, melon pieces and white rum and shook it like a mad yoke. Pouring it, she was conscious of the clock.

A passing seagull ruined it, dropping a stolen bit of cheese onto her arm, knocking the glass from her hand. Game over.

Until, she could try again in 5.

Wine Description.

This is pale, straw coloured Sauvignon Blanc that is bright, crisp and drying on the palate. It bursts on the tongue with green apple, infused with pear and citrus flavours such as lemon peel. It mellows as it goes down, making it a perfect companion for lunch or a summer’s day on a deck. It also has a slight buttery aftertaste which does make it enticing to open another!

I would recommend pairing this dish with soft cheeses or simply cooked shellfish.

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Mar de Vinas – Albarino 2019.

“Stay still for fecks sake Ruben,” Ellie warned.

Ruben had fallen into a cactus patch, losing his footing during the ‘Californian Colour Run.’

This involved people throwing colour bombs at you, as you ran.

Ellie squeezed out a vanilla one, next a green apple, followed by pale green pear and finally the light suppleness of a gooseberry coloured spike.

Clearly, Ruben had avoided most colours other than green.

Wine Description.

This is a light and refreshing white wine, which is slightly drying on the palate but not overly so. It has strong hints of pear, green apple and gooseberry on initial taste and is quite subtle on the nose. There are slight hues of vanilla and earthy notes in the aftertaste, but they’re not too obvious. We drank this on its own but should have consumed this with food.

I would pair this wine with tomato sauce-based pasta dishes and lean fish.

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Costa Cruz – Tempranillo / Shiraz 2019.

It swirled and spilled over, the fluid pancake mix rocking under the vibes and momentum of the minor earthquake.

Cherry, raisin and pomegranate along with the mix flowed over the edges of the table, with Edgar and Emma underneath.

“The prance horses are gonna be annoyed that there’s no pancakes for tea,” she uttered.

“Fecking primadonnas,” muttered Edgar.

The door was hammered open by hooves. And snarling, hungry, flaring nostrils 15 hands tall.

Wine Description.

This is a delicate red wine, something you rarely find. It isn’t an assault on the nose, being quite neutral initially, but upon tasting strong notes of pepper and cherry come through. I also tasted light notes of sweet raisin and pomegranate as the wine slipped down easily. It does have a drying aftertaste but that’s certainly not off-putting.

I would recommend pairing this wine with beef or gamey meats.

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Martoccia Chianti 2013 Review.

Jack checked the horizon line, peering over no-man’s land.

The scrubland was littered with raspberry bushes in season, a fine waste of fruit amongst gunfire.

Gunter was well camouflaged on the far side, hidden amongst the smoke of battle. He thought that one shot would rattle Jack, knocking his coffee cup off the shelf from 200 feet away.

But Gunter wasn’t the best shot in the world, his bullet hitting a wet earthy mound six feet to Jack’s left.

This row over a fence was getting serious.

Wine Description.

Open this wine for an hour before indulging is the first piece of advice I’d impart.

It is light and youthful on first taste, atypical of a Chianti, but develops beautifully as air passes through it.

This isn’t a full bodied wine, yet isn’t utterly see-through in colour and structure. 

It has strong notes of raspberry and plum, with the aftertaste of smoke on the finish.

It is well balanced and when you finish the bottle, you will want another!

 

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Vignoble Muret – Picpoul de Pinet 2018

Bernard shaved the sour lime, carefully not exposing the raw fruit underneath. Pouring sparkling soda water and a dash of double cream into a bowl, he squeezed the fruit and quickly whisked the mixture. Adding peach schnapps gave it a kick. The acid and dairy put up a fight but submitted to his dexterity. Ms Shaw noted his ability. Being able to make desserts in the jungle was impressive. Especially wearing a loincloth.

Wine Description.

This is a white wine that even totalitarian, austere red wine drinkers will like. It is neither sweet nor drying. It is subtle and unassuming, whilst having tones of sour lime, honey and cream. In fact my wife, who rarely drinks white wine, said that it wasn’t bad and reminded her of younger days when she drank cream soda. It is pale straw yellow in colour and extremely drinkable.

I would recommend this wine with vegetarian cuisine, such as quinoa. It could go very well with lean fish too.

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Tola – Nero d”Avola 2018

Hector would have to clean like a man possessed.

The stains remaining from Pat’s hungry wolfing of the cupboards and fridge, left the kitchen in absolute disarray.

Pat sat in his ill-fitting nappy, belly full and snoozing against the cupboard under the sink. Blackberry stain on the cream presses, cherry spludge on the floor tiles, milk chocolate smeared everywhere and an odd stick of vanilla in between his fingers, like a cigar.

Pat’s stag night wouldn’t be easily forgotten.

Wine Description.

This is a wine that dark chocolate lovers will gorge on. It is full of dark fruit but doesn’t assault you on the nose. It is bold yet subtle, with strong hues of blackcurrant, cherry and vanilla. There is the undertone of chocolate and raisin in the finish, and it is slightly drying. It is a bottle of wine that you don’t want to end or empty.

This would go well with red meat, particularly beef. Try it with pizza too.

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Dominique Baud – Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Arlene was trying to impress her new boss, Ewan.

She cut his morning grapefruit into perfect segments, poured his Arabian coffee with hot milk and drizzled sour honey over his wholegrain toast. He sniffed some sort of appreciation, flicking his silk robe behind him as he sat down.
The seven year old son of a billionaire was hard to impress.

Wine Description. 

The spice on her tongue led Megan to fly out of the damp oakwood door, and dive into the exclusively sparkling water fountain.
“Drama queen, ” uttered Sam, the fashion journalist, within earshot.
The splashing water flew high, splashing on the thick brambles of blackberry and dry gooseberry. Megan kicked out, stubbing her toe but not wanting Sam to be right.
“And who’s wet now Sam?” retorted Megan. Her toe was most likely broken.

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100 Hectares – Curtimenta Branco 2018.

The spice on her tongue led Megan to fly out of the damp oakwood door, and dive into the exclusively sparkling water fountain.
“Drama queen, ” uttered Sam, the fashion journalist, within earshot.
The splashing water flew high, splashing on the thick brambles of blackberry and dry gooseberry. Megan kicked out, stubbing her toe but not wanting Sam to be right.
“And who’s wet now Sam?” retorted Megan. Her toe was most likely broken.

Wine Description.

This is a complex wine with plenty of drama and lots of fruit. It is dry on the aftertaste with honey mixed in for smoothness. There is a hint of spice on initial tasting which mellows once the fruit hits the back of your tongue. It is a wine best savoured once opened for at least an hour.
As a food pairing, this could be easily be served with cheese or oily fish. Or this could as easily be served prior to dinner – or after.

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Quinta da Lixa – Pouco-Comum Alvarinho 2019.

Terri supped her green apple infused chamomile tea, staring out at the slowly lapping waves
of the Pacific ocean. She felt Zen. Until she heard the familiar spurt and hiss of her sister-in-law’s dirty cream coloured 1985 Peugeot. Irene could spoil any gathering on her own. Irene didn’t like stairs though. And she would have to walk up those steps that straddled the
water.

Wine Description.

This is a light and supple wine, well balanced and easily drinkable. There are short bursts of dry citrus and honey on the nose, with longer lingering green apple on the finish. It is fresh and has hints of tropical fruit, and I think I got a slight taste of pineapple and cream.
Pair this with shellfish, lean fish or cured meats.

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Chukkers – Malbec 2015.

Chris looked down from the mountain, spotting frozen blackberry bushes along the trail downhill. A snowball hit him on the left side of the face, his horse Jacoby recoiled from the assault. He knew it was Alison. Her subtle hint of mint and cherry wafted on the wind. She was devious and suggestive. More than just a half-sister.

Wine Description.

This is a bold wine that oozes blackberry straight from the bottle. It is rich and smooth, with undertones of mint, vanilla and some cherry. This could be easily drank on its own. We did accidentally chill this wine slightly, by leaving it on a shelf beside a cold window and it tasted lovely.
Pair this with beef or chicken to bring out its richness.
 

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Dragonfly – Chenin Blanc 2011.

Olivia grasped the metallic handle, carefully tipping the popcorn, sprinkled lightly with butter, into the large lemon coloured bowl. She had tried something experimental in the heats, mixing honey into the hot oil. This had infused a spectacular corn, winning over the judges thus far. But now, she has added a final ingredient. Elderflower. The judges weren’t smiling like before, but were running for buckets.

Wine Description.

This is a delicate wine with light fruits, that I was not expecting to enjoy so much. This was chilled nicely and was a cooling tonic after a warm mug of tea. What dominated this wine for me, was the lingering sense of butter mixed with lemon in the aftertaste. All I could think about was going for a bag of popcorn to compliment it! It is certainly moreish.
Pair this wine with cheeses or even a curry.

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Passo Antico – Coltivate Con Passione Rosso 2018.

Percy didn’t like bacon or milk chocolate messes. Especially when they were mixed. Solly agreed, spooning several scoops of vanilla ice cream into his gluttonous gob. Neither of the well-heeled, poorly dressed mock-aristocrats realised they were being filmed, and live streamed. To a Mexican boot polisher. With castanets. And no clothes on.

Wine Description.

This is one full-bodied red wine. It catches your nose, palate and aftertaste with beautiful notes. First off you have the fresh cherry and milk chocolate assaulting your senses. Then you have vanilla and a hint of woodiness in the tasting. And deep in the after taste, you have liquorice and a slight hint of bacon. It is a rollercoaster of a wine, but bloody hell, it is worth it!
Pair this with lamb, beef or strong cheeses.

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Sabatacha – Petit Verdot 2016

Nina thought about cream, then about goats cheese. Both would offset the spice and light pepper of the meal, disguising the main intention. She didn’t want to draw attention, especially since she hated her father-in-law. Instead she made a big deal of the $100 whiskey, distracting the fecker. If he drank enough of it, he would eat anything. Her goats would laugh at the irony of being involved. “

Wine Description.

This is great wine with food. The initial glass I had was before dinner, and although it tasted good, it opened up far better with, funnily enough, goat’s cheese and plum tomatoes. You get the creamy, dairy mix in the initial sampling, with warm after taste, like you might with a whiskey. It is drying on the palate, but not overly so. It is a wonderful and smooth wine to relax with.
Pair this with pasta or starters, like I did.

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Dois Terroirs Tinto 2015 Review.

Robbie didn’t have to think twice about leaving.

Folding and ironing his jocks and telling him she’d done so in front of his mates, was tough to take.

Camping out in the back garden amongst the oak trees, he gawked at the rations he’d managed to snag before absconding.

Vanilla soaked strawberries, a large bar of milk chocolate and a green apple were all he could grab in his twelve year old rage.

This standoff might last an hour or so.

Wine Description.

This a wine which is excellent value for money. It has similar structure to many Malbec wines, and opens well straight from the bottle being uncorked.

The colour of the wine is purple/red under light and is amazingly easy to drink.

It goes very well with dinner and would pair excellently with steak. The contrast of the woodiness, sweetness of the wine and the meat explodes in your mouth.

One wine I hope to revisit for another tasting soon. I rarely wishlist many wines but this is worthy.

An excellent Portuguese wine.

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Amarelo Albarino.

Gary squirmed on the stool.

Ian shook his head.

Alan scratched his balding bonce.

Never had three alpha males felt so ill at ease. They had to make their own perfume, live on TV, in the reality show, Out Of Their Depth.

Ian had crushed fresh green apple.

Gary used the tips of his fingers to crunch elderflower stems.

Alan smashed his head into a chopped grapefruit, remaining still, hoping this was all just a bad dream.

He didn’t move.

Wine Description.

Anyone who knows me, will tell you that I am not a big fan of white wine. This, however, I will exception for every day of the week!

It is light and refreshing, drying on the tongue without being off-putting.

It has strong hues of green apple and lemon, giving you that lightness and suplleness.

It also has a minerality and likability that I didn’t expect, being served nicely chilled for a few hours.

This is an excellent white Albarino, one that I hope to sample over the summer months.

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Eira Sao Miguel Tinto 2017 Review.

Jerry asked for a refill of black coffee, 3am on a Saturday morning, sitting alone at the counter of Eddie’s 24 hour diner.

“Give me 3 pancakes filled with black cherry, plum and top them off with cranberry sauce Rita,” he oozed. “And don’t be shy with the cream on the side either!”

Rita stood still, mouth agape, wondering why an eight year old, in full school uniform was in her diner, ordering food.

With no parents.

His smile was so disarming though.

Wine Description.

This wine is a pleasure to sample whilst cooking or prepping dinner or Sunday lunch.

It is also fantastic with food and if you have some left over once the dishes are done, goes down easily if you’re sitting down relaxing.

It is deep in black cherry and blackcurrant colour. The flavour of dark fruit, in particular cherry, comes through on the nose.

It is drying on the tongue but lingers nicely, giving a creamy, peppery finish.

I smelled mere hints of coffee yet my wife got tobacco, something I didn’t pick up on – but that’s individual noses for you!

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Finca del Alta Malbec  Review

Chuck chucked his food into his own gob far too quickly.

It wasn’t long before the acidity in his stomach grew.

Sipping pepper mint tea and guzzling Pepto Bismal, Chuck soon started to discolour from a plum coloured face to a more normal one.

Until his body thought otherwise when he started inhaling blackcurrant pie.

Then the Numbskulls took over and pressed the big red button. This fecker needed a heart attack for him to cop on.

He was 53 years old and was acting like a teenager

 

Wine Description.

This is a complex wine, not too fruity on the nose but bursting with blackcurrant flavour on the tongue.

It’s slightly acidic and has hints of plum and mint.

A really tasty wine that would go well with beef.

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When we Dance Chianti Review.

The pot boiled, then simmered, letting the aromas ooze through the contents.

Terri lifted the lid, assaulted by cherry, milk chocolate and upon tasting, the lingering taste of metal on the edges of her tongue.

“Get away from me pot of stew!” shouted an irritated Victor, clutching his ruby coloured walking stick, waving it threateningly.

“Grandad, it’s me, Terri. Sit your ass down for lunch.”

Donald, the golden retriever, barked in assent with Terri.

Victor listened.

Wine Description.

This a slow burner that opens up with the warmth of your hand and being uncorked and left to breathe.

It tastes light, a little playful, with a slight metallic taste on the edges of your tongue.

It does linger, with strong flavours of cherry and hints of milk chocolate. The ruby colour is see-through with little complexity.

It is a beautiful wine, simple and elegant.

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100 Hectares Red (Douro) 2018  Review.

The spice on her tongue led Megan to fly out of the damp oakwood door, and dive into the exclusively sparkling water fountain.

“Drama queen, ” uttered Sam, the fashion journalist, within earshot.

 The splashing water flew high, splashing on the thick brambles of blackberry and dry gooseberry. Megan kicked out, stubbing her toe but not wanting Sam to be right.

 “And who’s wet now Sam?” retorted Megan. Her toe was most likely broken.

Wine Description.

This is a complex wine with plenty of drama and lots of fruit. It is dry on the aftertaste with honey mixed in for smoothness. There is a hint of spice on initial tasting which mellows once the fruit hits the back of your tongue. It is a wine best savoured once opened for at least an hour.

 

 

As a food pairing, this could be easily be served with cheese or oily fish. Or this could as easily be served prior to dinner – or after.

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Duchess De Berry Bordeaux 2017.

The Peugeot hire car stalled, and eventually stopped, leaving Laura stuck by the side of a country road in misty September rain.

Her French was terrible but her plum umbrella was strong. Help would arrive in thirty minutes.

Venturing out onto the verge, she saw blackcurrants and blackberries still growing on the ditches. Alone with her thoughts, she came to a metal fence.

George didn’t see or hear her approach.

He pooped and mooed at the same time. Shock, pure shock enveloped him.

Wine Description.

This is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot grapes and is slightly tannic, yet warm on the tongue. It has strong tones of deep black fruit, blackcurrant and plum most notable. It is ruby red in colour under light yet packs more punch than you think it might.

 

As a food pairing, it is quite versatile. You could have chicken with this wine, or I could see it being an excellent accompaniment with a cheeseboard.

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Elisabeth French wine blend 2015.

Anne fell out of her cream hammock, face first into the sand.

Derek, her oblivious husband, was on his phone six feet away with his gut hanging out facing the sea.

She brushed off her clothes, thirsty to quell the hot Caribbean sun.

The figure of a Greek God appeared at the bar, shaking his coconuts.

Manuel shook his shaker, twirling it high.

“Let me fix you something Ms Anne,” he purred. He prepared a cocktail of green apple, passion fruit and vodka.

“You had me at passion Manuel.”

Wine Description.

I am predominantly a red wine drinker, but upon my brother’s educated guidance, I am slowly changing my palate and patterns. This is an excellent wine in so many ways. It is supple and slightly oily in the aftertaste, oily in such a way that is moreish.

 

It has fruit bounding out of the glass before you taste with tropical fruit such as lychee and passion fruit assaulting you before you taste green apple and gooseberry notes. Then you have a light cream finish of peach. It is simply fantastic.

 

For a food pairing, I would recommend fish such as salmon or tuna, as a great contrast to each other.

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Oliver and Gregs Merlot.

Fiachra recoiled, surprised initially by the acidity of the lemon infused dessert.

The mellowness that followed led him to investigate further.

He took another bite, wedging the fork into the second piece, tasting mild hints of strawberry jam in the middle of the thin layers.

This was getting better with each mouthful.

This was a good cake for a seven year old boy called Adam. Who smiled through missing front teeth.

Wine Description.

This is a highly drinkable Spanish Merlot that is slightly tannic but not off-puttingly so. It mellows once opened and goes best with food. It has mild fruity tastes that are not powerful, such as lemon and strawberry.

 

For a food pairing, I would recommend drinking this with veal or beef.

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Domaine Passion des Dames Cotes Du Rhone.

Johnny licked his lips, tasting the faint undertone of plum lip gloss.

Kim left him thinking, as she walked away winking.

“One kiss and I have that impact near your eh, pockets?” she asked.

“Eh, no, love. It’s a bag of mushrooms. I was out sticking me fingers in the earthy soil earlier.”

“Ooh, baby, talk dirty to me.”

“Okay so. Oil. Muck.”

Wine Description.

This a bold wine with strong aromas of dark fruit, plum in particular. It is drying in the aftertaste, but not overly so. It is extremely smooth and even. We drank it after food, watching television, relaxing and it disappeared quickly. There are some hints of earthy undertones. It is subtle and very drinkable.

 

For a food pairing, this would go excellently with a meat such as beef or lamb.