What to drink this week

House red wines

Country Life Every Week - - Town & Country Notebook -

The con­cept of the house wine is usu­ally as­so­ci­ated with restau­rants, which donõt al­ways hon­our it by choos­ing ex­am­ples of lower-priced reds and whites that en­hance the rep­u­ta­tion of the cui­sine with real qual­ity and typ­ic­ity. All too of­ten, restau­rant house wines are bland quaf­fers bought sim­ply on price, then sub­jected to a hefty mark-up. It does­nõt have to be like thatñand the con­cept of house wine can ex­tend use­fully to the home.

Harry Eyres

Why you should be drink­ing them

Ev­ery well-stocked cel­lar should have some hearty ev­ery­day drink­ing winesñ­for medium-sized in­for­mal gath­er­ings, per­haps, or to ac­com­pany low-key kitchen sup­pers. They will prob­a­bly be on the ro­bust side (espe­cially the reds) and not espe­cially sub­tle, but then, itõs not ev­ery evening that you want to be un­pick­ing the se­crets and nu­ances of a grand cru Bur­gundy.

What to drink

Iõve se­lected some very good value south­ern French reds from the Bunch, the group of independent mer­chants that cham­pi­ons Ôthe causes of in­di­vid­u­al­ity and di­ver­si­tyõ. Costi•res de N”mes Do­maine de la Cadenette 2015 (be­low, £7.99; www.ad­nams.co.uk) is pur­plish in colour with vel­vety depth and spice: itõs ex­cel­lent value. For some­thing slightly wilder, with the gar­rigue qual­ity of the high Min­er­vois coun­try, try L'os­tal del Sou­quet Carig­nan Vieilles Vignes IGP Coteaux de Peyr­iac 2015 (£8.50; www.cor­ney and­bar­row.com). Show­ing re­mark­able class for the price is Le Mas, Do­maine de Clavel, C™teaux du Langue­doc 2015 (£9.50; www.tan­ners-wines.co.uk): mostly Gre­nache, but with some spicy Syrah, this has sur­pris­ing el­e­gance.

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