Alistair Gibson: Dear sons, some Father's Day hints for you
Recommending wines for Valentine's Day is relatively straightforward '“ it's going to be sparkling and probably pink.
But when it comes to suggesting something for Father’s Day, its not quite so simple. It depends what the dad in your life enjoys. So this is almost a personal message to my sons: if you are reading boys, any of these would do just fine...
Mâcon Villages from the deep south of the chardonnay heartland of Burgundy is one of those white wines that seems to have fallen out of fashion, which is a shame as there are some lovely, food-friendly wines produced here.
Mâcon Villages Chapelle aux Loups 2014, Louis Jadot (Waitrose £11.99) is made by one of Burgundy’s best-known and most consistent producers.
There are notes of melon, citrus and a little honey followed by a really well-balanced palate with soft creamy fruit and lively acidity. Try this with a roast chicken or a simple fish dish.
One of my favourite Australian regions is the Margaret River and I have very happy memories of visiting Vasse Felix a few years ago, one of the area’s original wineries, and it is their chardonnays that really sing.
Vasse Felix Filius Chardonnay 2014, Margaret River (Waitrose £9.99 down from £12.99 until June 28) is a lovely introduction to just what this region can do with this grape.
This is really focused wine which has had just a little oak maturation. There is lemon, a touch of orange zest and pineapple on the nose before a very elegant mouth feel with bright acidity and a long, dry clean finish. Great with seafood.
When it comes to reds, one of the wines I’ve enjoyed most in the past month is Errazuriz Max Reserva Carmenere 2014, Aconcagua (winedirect.co.uk £13.50, Amazon £14.50, Asda online £12.47).
Produced by one of Chile’s most forward-thinking producers, a firm still family-owned, this has smoky cherries, mulberries, mocha and some spice. It’s full-bodied but very well-balanced, with ripe tannins and a very long, spice finish.
This would work with a rare steak or a slow-roasted shoulder of lamb. When it comes to a tasty, midweek red, The Society’s Sicilian Reserve Red 2013 (Wine Society £7.50) really over-delivers.
Sicily is increasingly becoming a source for great value reds made from local, indigenous grape varieties. This is made from Nero d’Avola from the south coast of the island.
It’s smooth and generous with dark red fruits and spicy, savoury notes and some earthiness on the finish. Try with a tomato-based pasta dish or rustic pizza. Delicious.