This is some text inside of a div block.
95
★★★★★

2012 La Pèira en Damaisela Terrasses du Larzac, A$217

From one of the top producers in the Languedoc and the revered appellation of Terrasses du Larzac comes this aged red at the peak of its powers made from syrah and grenache. It is showing its bottle age with a slightly faded colour, and the cherry compote fruits are now equally matched to baked earth, white pepper and old leather aromas. The palate is fleshy and more in the tobacco, charcuterie and earthy flavour spectrum with the tannins fully resolved on a long and supple finish.

94
★★★★

2017 Zélige Caravent Velvet Syrah Grenache, A$86

A fascinating version of biodynamic old-vine syrah, with a dash of cinsault, grown on steep gravel soils near the town of Pic St Loup. Deeply coloured, this is a brooding and savoury style with blackberry and mineral fruits plus an attractive side serve of black olive tapenade and olive leaf. It’s juicy in the mouth with a strong core of fruit pastille flavours and an edge of meat and spice. There is good structure, too, so don’t be in any hurry with this one.

93
★★★★

2020 Château La Négly La Brise Marine La Clape Blanc, A$35

This was one of the picks from the tasting where a blend of varieties with high-quality winemaking has made for a delicious example of what the Languedoc can do in the right hands. Pale straw in colour, it charms with melon, floral and citrus fruits, a touch of barrel spice plus a rich vein of savoury, pithy complexity. Great energy in the mouth and brightness of concentrated fruit driven by tangy acidity. There is excellent balance, too, with a long finish to top it off.

93
★★★★

2017 Domaine de l’Ausseil Vent dans les Plumes, A$58

The carignan grape gets a bit of a bad rap. However wines from low-yielding old vines in the Côtes-du-Roussillon such as this, which was made without fining, filtration or sulphites at bottling, can be a revelation with their powerful savoury fruits. Deeply coloured and flavoured, there is a superb array of aromas from blackberry compote through to liquorice allsorts, tar and baked earth, old oak adding a rustic edge. Fruit is bright with balanced tannins providing a decent backbone.

92
★★★★

2020 Domaine Félines Jourdan Picpoul de Pinet, A$24

A very good-value wine and an example of that salty tang and smell of the sea displayed in the best picpoul. Bright light straw in colour, it’s expressive but also reserved, with melon and citrus fruit aromas plus a strong saline edge. The palate is juicy, bright and concentrated, with spicy and citrus flavours. Elegant yet lightweight, it finishes surprisingly long. A super introduction to the style.

92
★★★★

2020 Selon Létang Cinsault, A$26

A very stylish, modern interpretation of cinsault that will please Beaujolais fans with its juicy, casual style – but it also carries with it plenty of complexity. Mid-ruby in colour, the aromas are punchy and engaging: liquorice, fruit pastilles and dried herbs with great purity and youthful vitality thanks to no oak used in the winemaking process. A nice acid bite and 11.5% alcohol plus supple tannins support more redcurrant fruits, with herbal and earthy notes adding depth and interest.

91
★★★★

2019 Domaine Ribiera Tintorela Blanc, A$44

A unique blend of malvasia and grenache blanc that shows the versatility across Southern France with its range of grape varieties. The wine opens with expressive and vibrant aromas of exotic tropical fruits with lifted floral and blossom complexity. The palate is then more savoury yet retains its energetic feel with more citrus fruits topped by nougat and oak spice. A super lunch wine.

91
★★★★

2020 Fontanet Les Terrasses Blanc, A$20

A good introduction to the modern Southern French wine style with an attractive blend of grenache blanc, sauvignon blanc and colombard. Not your traditional mix but it works. Melon and citrus aromas to start before a dusting of dried apricot fruits plus a nice touch of nougat leesy complexity. The palate then shows a good mixture of crisp acidity and textural richness before a drying savoury finish. Good price, too.

90
★★★★

2020 Château Martinolles Vieilles Vignes Limoux Chardonnay, A$22

Limoux is best known as home to many excellent sparkling wines but here we have a chardonnay that is made to please. It has generous sweet fruits for a French chardonnay, in the peach skin and nectarine spectrum with a good dash of sweet oak. On the palate there is an attractive mix of tangy acidity, thanks to the cool Limoux climate, supporting mouthfilling fruit and spicy oak, with a creamy, textural and supple finish.

90
★★★★

2019 L’Artisan Le Grenache Noir, A$20

A very modern French style of grenache with a good mix of sweet fruit with a savoury heart. Deeply coloured, it has chunky aromas of blackberry, dark earth, spice and slate with some sweet oak to back it all up. Dark fruits dominate on the mid-weight palate with sandy tannins providing a good backbone before earthy/tobacco flavours come through on a slightly rustic finish.

88
★★★

2020 Clomarin Picpoul de Pinet, A$25

Pale in colour, this is very typical of classic picpoul styles found around the world. The vivacious, youthful fruit has good aromatic precision with just-picked melon and citrus fruits plus a very gentle salty tang. That fruit is more delicate and understated on the palate, with reasonable concentration and length.

88
★★★

2018 Domaine Anne Gros & Jean-Paul Tollot La Vermentino, A$45

From two well-known names in Burgundy comes this vermentino made with Burgundian flair. Pale straw in colour there are citrus and honeydew melon fruit aromas lifted by quite subtle spicy barrel and some leesy elements. There are also aged honeyed elements that add a bit more interest. The palate is soft and understated with a slightly salty tang before a silky finish.