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Time to travel

February 17, 2022

Time to travel

The wonderful South America Wine Guide, brightening an otherwise wet and miserable February morning.

With travel back on this year, you can finally plan your dream trip. And if you’re thinking of South America, grab a copy of this incredible book by Amanda Barnes,

Flicking through this morning, I stopped at Patagonia, Argentina’s most southerly wine producing region. From glaciers, lakes and fjords in the west to deserts in the east, it’s a destination for the adventurer, and most definitely the wine enthusiast.

Its vineyards are located between 300 and 500 meters above sea level and the climate is continental, warm and semi arid, with less than 200mm of annual rainfall. The region’s warm days and cold nights suits the production of elegant wines, where varietals like Pinot Noir are thriving. The region is also producing some world-class Malbecs, which tend to be fresh, expressive and packed full of juicy red fruits.

We’re steadily building our range of wines from Patagonia and currently looking to source some whites. Aromatic varieties such as Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Gris are looking exciting, so that will be our focus. In the meantime, we have some cracking reds from Bodega Del Rio Elorza and Aniello to start you on your Patagonian journey. We've popped below some recommendations and you can save 5% on any mixed six bottles by entering SAVE5 into the discount box at checkout.

Verum Pinot Noir - £13.99

An elegant Pinot Noir from the cooler climate region of Patagonia. Oz Clarke loved the 2017 vintage and the 2020 is just as good. Packed full of juicy ripe red berries and a hint of spice, it's medium bodied with soft tannins.

Verum Cabernet Franc - £17.99

Oz Clarke tasting note...

'Blistering desert sands to the north, the endless storm-swept stony waste of Patagonia to the south; and yet here, where the mighty Rio Negro surges from the Andes to the Atlantic, a little verdant paradise for just a few miles each side of the bustling waters of the river. Vines were planted here long ago, lots of types, but for me the joy lies in this Cabernet Franc. It isn't a well-known grape, but some say it might prove to be the best grape in all Argentina.

'Well, planted in the bright sunshine of Argentina's far south, with chilly nights checking the rush to ripeness of the grapes and allowing them to hold on to their perfume and crisp juiciness - they might be right. This Cabernet Franc, with such an alluring raspberry flavour - pips and all - that I wonder - is it like shop-bought raspberry jam or could it be good enough to be my mum's home-made? - and this is wrapped in black chocolate sauce and sprinkled with the warm dry dust of a summer country lane ..... Yes, perhaps Cabernet Franc could be Argentina's greatest grape.'

Aniello Malbec - £14.99

The vineyards in Rio Negro flourish in the warm sun, yet the grapes are kept cool from winds that flow down from the Andes. These conditions produce some of the best Malbec in Argentina. The Aniello 006 is all about the red fruits, with aromas of cherries and raspberries, along with lavender and earthy minerals. Ripe tannins and enhanced minerality give this wine a beautiful structure and finish.

Aniello Pinot Noir - £14.99 

The Aniello 006 Pinot Noir has all the classic red fruit character you'd expect from a top notch Pinot, so plenty of strawberry and cranberry, but it's full of character, with earthy notes, minerality and a good dash of acidity. Lovely with a bit of lamb.