A refreshing way to end my dry run

A refreshing way to end my dry run

The chance to try two tempting wines gives the CBI’s regional director Dianne Sharp the excuse she needs to call time on a month of abstinence

There was much anticipation in our house for ‘Wine Wednesday’ not least because this review was the perfect excuse to end our dry January a few days early.

As we were preparing one of my favourite home cooked fast foods – mussels, then the Chateau du Cleray, seemed the perfect first choice. In less than 30 minutes after walking in the front door you can have prepared fresh steaming bowls of goodness that just need some tasty bread on the side - or ‘frites’ (posh word for chips when you are trying to be healthy), if you are my husband.

The recipe also called for 150ml of dry white wine, preferably Muscadet, which allowed us to kid ourselves that we didn’t drink the whole bottle…….! And a most enjoyable drink it was. Zingy with citrus fruits, it has a light initial taste but carries through to show real depth. I thought there was also some slight, almost saltiness, to it, before combining with the mussels. I clearly take my cooking inspiration from Keith Floyd on Wednesdays. It was dry and refreshing, not at all what I was expecting. It would be a perfect accompaniment to any fish dish, and is a great bottle for the price.

Dry January now being completely forgotten, Friday night was steak night and time to break open the Finca Resalso. The smell took me immediately back to my ‘70’s childhood due to the cherry rich black forest gateaux aroma. I wasn’t the cook tonight as my husband makes a peppercorn sauce that can’t be beaten, though I suspect that the recipe is never quite the same twice. So as the steaks sizzled I enjoyed a first taste of this surprisingly fresh glass.

Very smooth and full of forest fruits, there is also a spicy note too. It is a deep cherry red colour and is perfect for a cold, Friday, January evening. It was a great accompaniment to the steak and peppercorn sauce, but I can also imagine it going well with good quality bangers and mash. Any robust, even spicy meat would work well.

This bottle was so popular in our house it was photographed as a reminder for our next wine shopping trip to Majestic, and named as a must buy. Whilst at the top end of what we would spend on an everyday bottle (not literally I hasten to add), we will be ensuring that a few more bottles make it home. After all I need to try and pick up the liquorice flavour that my husband said he could taste.

Finca ResaloChâteau du Cléray Muscadet de Sévre at Maine Sur Lie 2013, Sauvion
Origin: Château du Cléray have 30 hectares of vineyards which stand on the characteristic sandy soil of the commune of Vallet. The estate has been run by the Sauvion family since
1935, and is today run by winemaker Pierre Sauvion, graduate in oenology at Bordeaux University.
Grape: Melon de Bourgogne.
Taste: Steely and focused, this shows its class from the very first aromas of well defined citrus and stone fruit, flowing seamlessly into notes of wet stone. Dry and incisive on the palate, with great length.
Enjoy: A must with haddock, crusted sardines and other fresh classic fish dishes.

ResaloFinca Resalso 2013, Emilio Moro, Ribera del Duero
Origin: Finca Resalso is a collection of vineyards ranging from 5-15 years of age; the youngest vines in the Emilio Moro estate. The wine is a lighter alternative to their signature wine, still of 100% ‘Tinto Fino’, having undergone less extraction and oak ageing.
Grape: Tempranillo
Taste: Dominated by primary fruit character, combining ripe mulberry and cherry with forest fruit characters. Subtle notes of liqourice and spice add a hint of savoury depth.
Enjoy: Perfect with grilled merquez or other spicy, smoky meats.

The wines Dianne sampled were Finca Resalso Emilio Moro, £11.99, or £8.99 each when you buy two. 3 February - 27 April 2015.
Chateau du Cleray Muscadet, £9.99, or £8.49 each when you buy 2. 3rd February - 27th April 2015. Wine supplied by Majestic Wine Warehouse, Gosforth.