12 wines of Christmas – part 2

Brewery Hill Chardonnay Viognier 2009, Australia
nakedwines £8.99

More flavour than the Pinot Grigio, this went well with both sausages and cheese-and-onion tarts. Interesting enough, it gained a lot of admiration from assorted guests, but I think it’s a little much for what it is, maybe £8 is more realistic. We’ll certainly be enjoying the remaining two bottles in the case though.

La Croix du Chene Syrah-Grenache 2007, Rhone, France
nakedwines £8.99

A very pleasant and fairly light red, though clearly more to it than the Pinot Noir, this accompanied the cheese tarts very well, and kept itself together over the next two days as well. It was nice enough on its own too. Another one where the second bottle is eagerly anticipated, but I’d choose the Buxynoise Pinot Noir over this, or the Brewery Hill Shiraz (see below).

Brewery Hill Shiraz 2008, Australia
nakedwines £8.99

As people who’ve seen me at tastings will know, I tend to prefer stronger-flavoured wines over weaker versions of the same grapes. This was most obviously shown when I tried the Heartlands Director’s Cut Shiraz, something which blew too strong for most people. This is nothing like as full-on as that was, but still shows a noticeable change from the French alternative. The Brewery Hill Shiraz is yet another £8.99-er from nakedwines, I get the feeling that they tend to price almost everything around this much, and worked well on its own as an afternoon-drink as well as with dinner. Barbecues would clearly suit this down to the ground, but cold afternoons round the table playing board games was just fine too.

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