Mother’s Day wine: Choices for mum’s special day

SOME people can’t  stand Mother’s Day. I  mean they love their mum,  but they can’t stand leaving the house for the so-called  “treat”. Over-booked  restaurants, under-cooked  food and poor old mum  trying to pretend it’s the  best time she‘s had since the grand final of The X  Factor.

The alternative is staying  in –  cook a lovely Mother’s Day lunch and  break out a really nice  bottle of wine.

Research for the Big Day next week led to several  wines, with mixed results.  The Exquisite Collection  South Australia Shiraz  2012  which Aldi, ever  cost-conscious, is  selling at just £5.99.

Now Shiraz can be  confrontational; the  sort of wine that sits  there and says “I’m big and I’m gutsy so don’t come near unless a gulp of aggression is what you’re  prepared for”.

I found it resin-y, oily, and  tannins  overpowered the “ripe  black plum fruits,  blackberries and succulent black cherries” the label proclaimed.

However, saying  that, this wine won three awards  last year.  A silver  at the Decanter  World Wine  Awards; commended at the International wine  Challenge. It also won a  What Food What Wine  challenge  as a   match for  lamb rogan josh.  To be fair,  a day after opening, and poured alongside a Thai supper with a spicy punch  worthy of  Tony The Bomber Bellew, the wine was a  worthy opponent.

Morrisons Signature  Chablis (RRP £9.99 at   Morrisons stores,  www.morrisonscellar.com).  How does that joke go. “I  don’t like chardonnay but I  love Chablis.” If you didn’t  know, Chablis is 100%  chardonnay. The label  declares this has crisp green  apples and soft banana  flavours.  I definitely got the  apples, but the bananas  were off my radar. Taut sharp green apples on the  nose, but to taste it wasn’t  as crisp and linear as I’d  like.

Rosé Royal Pinot Noir Spumante, Giacomo Montresor mothers' day wine

Rosé Royal Pinot Noir  Spumante, Giacomo  Montresor (£9.45,  www.allaboutwine.co.uk).   Lovely bottle, makes me  feel all special and would be a perfect treat for Mother’s Day. It is  a pale  pink sparkling wine from  pinot noir grapes. The wine is kept on the lees for four months, adding complexity.  Fresh bread aromas mingle with  dried strawberries  and cherries. There’s  a nose-tickling  sparkle with cherries to taste.

The Society’s  Celebration Crémant de  Loire (www.thewinesociety.com, £11.50, or   £9.50 equivalent if you buy  six up to March 30). Loire  producer  Gratien & Meyer   this year celebrates its  150th anniversary and it is  the society’s longest  continuous supplier – since 1906 in fact. The blend is exclusive to the society,  with chardonnay, chenin,  cabernet franc and pinot  noir.  On the nose, bright  fresh apple after an April shower; squeezy fresh to  taste with an huzzah of apple bite freshness and  lemon.

Canard-Duchêne  Authentic Réserve  Brut  (RRP£26.99,  Waitrose and www.waitrosedirect.com). Now  don’t be shocked. I had this Champagne with a  curry takeaway  and it was  bloomin’ perfect. Of course  I professionally “tasted” it  first for  your benefit. But  then for my benefit I shared  an aubergine side dish, melting Bombay potatoes  and a lamb dupiaza. With  Champagne? It was heavenly. Aged for three years, it has intensity to  counteract spice; freshness to liven the palate; dried  apples and stone fruits  bring  a livening lift.

Published in the saturday extra magazine March 22, 2014

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