Irish Times top 100 wines for 2011

Three of our wines are featured in the Irish Times `Top 100` this year: Sparklings of the Year `Star Buy`: Crémant d’Alsace Brut Extra NV, Domaine Meyer-Fonné, 12%: Alsace produces some excellent sparkling wine, made by the traditional Champagne method. This wine, made from a blend of pinot blanc, chardonnay and pinot noir is bone dry with just two grammes of residual sugar. It is a very stylish wine, with a lightly bready nose, wonderful clean crisp citrus acidity, balanced perfectly by some lovely ripe fruit. It is streets ahead of most Champagne at this price. Stockists: Redmonds of Ranelagh; Fallon Byrne, Exchequer Street; Le Caveau, Kilkenny, Red wines of the Year: Familia Cecchin, Malbec Mendoza 2008, 13.5%: A natural wine, made without the addition of sulphur, and also without the lavish use of new oak. Medium-bodied, with delicious pure damson and savoury dark berry fruits, this would make perfect barbecue fare for red meats. Stockists: Le Caveau Kilkenny. White wines of the Year: Vouvray La Dilettante 2009 Catherine and Pierre Breton, 12%, €17.95 Catherine and Pierre Breton, leading producers in Bourgueil, also produce this fascinating dry(ish) Chenin Blanc, made by biodynamic methods. It has wonderful rich, luscious pineapple and peach fruits, seemingly low acidity, yet retains plenty of life. At a mere 12% alcohol, it is light, yet juicy. Try it with scallops or prawns. Stockist: Le Caveau, Kilkenny Irish Times, John Wilson`s Wimnes of the Year - Friday, December 2nd 2011
Pascal Rossignol

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