March 5, 2024

John Wilson: Three great-value warming reds from O’Briens’ Christmas line-up


Wines for the Weekend: This trio are rich and hearty but also have a touch of elegance

As the cold weather creeps in we begin to look for more substantial red wines. I have avoided swarthy, overly alcoholic reds; the three warming wines below are from regions capable of producing rich, hearty wines that will keep the winter chill away, but all have a touch of elegance that makes them even more welcoming, as do the very keen prices: the are great value for money. All are part of O’Briens’ Christmas promotion.

Laurent Miquel Heritage Vineyards Syrah 2020, IGP d’Oc, France, 14%, €10 (down from €14.95)
Laurent Miquel consistently produces some of the best-value wines in Languedoc, and this one is no exception. Smooth, supple, rounded ripe dark forest fruits with a touch of spice. Hard to beat at the promotional price. A good all-rounder with herby pork chops, or an Irish stew.

Marques de Borba Colheita 2019 JP Ramos, Alentejo, Portugal, 14%, €12.95 (down from €17.95)
João Portugal Ramos is one of the leading winemakers in Portugal, fashioning a range of well-made wines from various parts of the country. From Alentejo, in the baking-hot interior, this a lovely warming wine with herbal aromas and soft, easy ripe dark fruits. Perfect with a roast of pork or a herby lamb casserole.

Norton Luján de Cuyo Malbec 2018, Argentina, 14.5%, €12.95 (down from €18.95)
Rich and harmonious, with silky-smooth loganberry and blackcurrant fruits, overlaid with spice. A seductive mix of power and elegance. Serve alongside a steak, a roast of beef or a rich casserole.

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