On the Wine Shelf...

Marques de Casa Concha Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 (Independents €14.99 )

From the alluvial stony soil of the Puente Alto vineyard in Chile’s Maipo Valley this is mostly Cabernet Sauvignon (90 per cent ) with slight additions of Cabernet Franc, (six per cent ), Carmenère (three per cent ), and Petit Verdot (one per cent ). On the nose there is lots of black ripe fruit that moves from cherry to blackcurrant with hints of cedar and smoke. On the palate it’s just as tight and impressive with all those rich ripe fruits not shy of telling you they’re there along with some firm tannins. That said, there is still a smoothness in evidence to go with a long heart-warming finish. Overall, a real hearty, well-priced wine that needs the company of a meaty dish with a rich luscious tomato sauce or such like for it to be really loved.

Pieropan Soave DOC 2010 (Independents €16 )

If you’re ever wondered what really stunning Soave from Italy’s Veneto should taste like, or have been put off by many of the awful ones over the years, this is the one that will definitely enlighten you and put you back on track. The last couple of vintages have been stunning and this particular delight is along the same lines. Made from Garganega (90 per cent ) and Trebbiano di Soave (10 per cent ), on the nose it’s got a slight nutty flavour wrapped in under-ripe green apples and white flowers. On the palate it’s a master class in Soave with ever so delicate lemony flavours mixing with almonds and pears that are so easy to drink to a long finish. In essence, a beautifully textured wine that is a joy to sip as an aperitif or over a longer evening.

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