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Ian's top picks for Spring 2022!
Domaine Thillardon Chénas 'Les Carrieres', Beaujolais, France 2019 €29
Paul-Henri and his brother Charles run this incredibly exciting Domain in Chenas, the smallest of the Beaujolais Crus. Farming the estate as naturally as possible, their wines are refined and poised, yet individual and expressive, with a genuine sense of place. Les Carrieres is as pure an expression of Gamay as you are likely to find, with raspberry and red cherry fruit, a fine seam of acidity and a satisfyingly stony, mineral grip.
Brovia ‘Sori del Drago’ Barbera d’Alba, Piedmont, Italy 2019 €33
The Brovia family first established their winery in Castiglione Falletto in 1863, and it is currently run by 4th generation Elena Brovia, and her husband Alex, who continue the traditions and ethos of her ancestors- organically farmed vineyards, minimum intervention winemaking, and long, slow fermentations – all of which Brovia have been doing long before it was cool. Their Barolos are legendary, but they have always shown due respect to the Barbera grape too, a variety which has long lived in the shadow of Nebbiolo, and is often relegated to lesser vineyards. But Brovia show, with care, attention and the right site, Barbera is capable of producing wonderfully expressive, focused and characterful wines.
Sori del Drago is deep purple in colour, with raspberry, sour cherry, violet, nutmeg and dried herb flavours. Vibrant acidity gives a burst of juiciness on the palate, and an intense minerality provides a wonderfully satisfying impression.