It is too early to know what the disruption of the last couple of years will mean for the wine world but I’m certain that online wine shopping will continue. We have all gotten so used to ordering from the Internet, and with Amazon due to open an Irish warehouse I don’t see the move to online slowing down — especially for more left-of-centre wines.
Boujee Booze (boujee-booze.com) is the newest entrant — created during lockdown by friends Michael O’Donoghue and Simon O’Connor their site offers a subscription service and a bit more than just wine with recipes, pairing suggestions, hampers and more on the way, including beer. Wines are sourced from smaller family-owned vineyards and there is a noticeable emphasis on natural and organic wines but with many classic regions also covered — mainly France and Italy.
By the way the word ‘Boujee’ is a corruption of ‘bourgeois’ and is a slang term for something or someone aspirational (I confess I had to look it up in the Urban Dictionary!). The lads sent me four wines and I feature two here. The four they sent me were natural ‘Glou-Glou’ style wines but I see on their site they also stock some more traditional wines from the likes of JL Chave, Moulin de Gassac and Famille Perrin. Glou-Glou translates as glug-glug and denotes the easy drinking ‘vin de soif’ wines served in the wine bars around Oberkampf and Rue St Maur in Paris’s 11th Arrondissement and in the natural winebars of Amsterdam.
From the new to the old — my other selections here are from Wines Direct which began as a wine mail order service in pre-internet days. You’ll find them on many a restaurant wine list and they are well represented in Munster thanks to Fionnuala Harkin — check out her Instagram @Wineshedwestcork for tastings and informative wine chat. You can find some of their wines offline in independents such as Matsons, Lettercollum Kitchen Project, Organico, Urru and Gearoidins in Clonakilty — a former café that is now a lovely little wine and food store (thanks to lockdown).
Wines Direct has upped its game in recent with many more low intervention and organic wines and new regions including Greece, Slovenia and Romania. They work exclusively with independent family-run vineyards, following the ethos of their much-missed creator Paddy Keogh — he’d be proud of how his family have built the business since his death. Also featured here is a bargain Roussanne that you need to try.
Wines Under €15
Aldi Specially Selected Roussanne IGP 2020, Pays d’Oc, France — €8.99
Roussanne is native to the North Rhône where it is blended with Marsanne in Hermitage and St Joseph: its racy aromatic intensity also helps lift Grenache Blanc blends further south. It is rare to find it as a single varietal at such a good price — this has floral stone fruit aromas and delightful weight and texture and balancing citrus zing on the finish. Thanks to ML for suggesting it!
Le Petit Courselle ‘Les Copains’ 2020, Vin de France — €15.75
Stockists: Wines Direct Mullingar & Arnotts winesdirect.ie,
Made by two sisters, Sylvie and Marie Courselle, as a side project to their main job running the family Bordeaux estate of Château Thieuley in Entre-Deux-Mers. This is a fun blend of Merlot, Cab Franc and Syrah: minty dark fruit aromas with a touch of green pepper, concentrated and ripe with blackcurrants and crunchy dark fruits. Try with something meaty or spicy.
Di Filippo Grechetto, Umbria IGT, Italy — €15.70-€17.50
Stockists: Wines Direct Mullingar & Arnotts winesdirect.ie, Little Cheese Shop Dingle, Matsons,
This organic white is a bit of a find. Grechetto is the best grape of the Umbrian wine region Orvieto (a DOC much improved these days), and not a grape you often see on a label. Pear, almond and herbal aromas: textured and lively on the palate with peach hints and a pleasing citrus crispness on the finish.
Wines Over €15
Chat Fou par Éric Texier 2020, Côtes du Rhône, France — €26.50
Stockists: Boujee Booze boujee-booze.ie, Green Man, 64 Wines, Pinto Wines, Lilith Stoneybatter.
Éric Texier is a darling of the natural wine world and his peaches-n-cream Adèle has also featured here — €28 from Boujee. This is mostly Grenache (+10% white grapes) and pours a dark garnet colour with crushed berry aromas, ripe red/black fruits on the palate with spice accents: it finishes with the same tang found in a mouthful of fresh-picked Irish raspberries. Delicious.
Domaine de l’Ecu ‘Nobis’, Love & Grapes 2020, Rhône, France — €22
Stockists: Boujee Booze boujee-booze.ie, Sheridans Cheesemeongers.
An organic biodynamic ‘Vin de France’ Syrah from declassified Châteauneuf-du-Pape vineyards in the Southern Rhône. This pours a vibrant purple with ripe berry and violet scents, fruity, juicy and lively with some pepper and spice notes to add interest. This is a classic ‘glou-glou’ gluggable wine and a good match for anything from Pizza to Peking Duck.
La Sapata Aligoté, Podgoria Sarica Niculitel DOC, Romania — €17.25-18.90
Stockists: Wines Direct Mullingar & Arnotts winesdirect.ie
This wine has the same owner/winemaker as the Di Filippo Grechetto feature here and from a region I’m fairly sure I’ve never mentioned before in western Romania near the Black Sea. Probably my first non-Burgundian taste of Aligoté, this could easily have come from Bouzeron — herbal, confit pear aromas: sappy and textured with rounded yellow apple fruits and balancing freshness.
Gin of the Week