Friday, 10 June 2011

Not wines for alfresco dining

Back in the heady days of May, when we were having a summer, I was sent some samples of wines for alfresco dining.  What a ridiculous idea that sounds now, when I sit nursing a cup of coffee to keep my fingers from freezing and realise the foolishness of wearing Birkenstocks when I know what I really need is a pair of woolly socks and some boots.

No-one wants to contemplate the delights of a chilled skinny white wine in such weather and you would justifiably think I had lost my mind if I recommended anything that might need chilling. 

Instead, grab yourself a bottle of Clos de los Siete 2008, £12.99 at Waitrose and Majestic.

This is a Matthew Pinsent of a wine.  Pretty supersized, but undoubtedly toned and muscular and never simply fat or out of proportion.  An Argentinian take on the classic Bordeaux blend, made by Mondovino pantomime baddy Michel Rolland, it's a blend of Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot (and some Syrah).  The fruit is plush and fragrant, but deep and dark and the tannins are pretty assertive, so I'd recommend this with something meaty.  Argentinians are famous connoisseurs of steak, so it's a fair bet that this would make a happy companion to sirloin or rump.  Or it would be a naughty luxury treat with a lamb chop.

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