We've chosen six bottles for your delectation and delight this month. Fizz, white, rosé and red. Something for every occasion. Here are the wines:
Crémant de Limoux, J. Laurens
We couldn't do our first mixed box without our popular Languedoc fizz. As a Crémant rather than the original Blanquette style, the wine is Chardonnay-based with added Chenin Blanc, Pinot Noir and a soupçon of the indigenous Malbec grape. If you think it tastes like a good Champagne you'd be right. The secondary fermentation in the bottle confers complexity and the Chardonnay gives lovely biscuity aromas so common in good Chardonnay-based Champagnes. Not too dry, not too sweet. Everyone loves it!
Domaine la Croix belle, Caringole Blanc 2019
A really fresh blend of Chardonnay and Sauvignon. This wine is super fruity but the Sauvignon gives a good blast of soft acidity which lightens everything up. From the respected Croix Belle domain in Puissalicon, this is a white wine which will work well as an apéritif, but ideally will go with fishy tapas or grilled fish.
Domaine des Trinités, L'Imaginaire 2019, 100% Roussanne
The joker in the pack in this mixed six. Roussanne is a hugely interesting grape which has a great future in the higher up areas of the Languedoc. This wine has loads of complex fresh and exotic fruit flavours, plus the unique aromas of Roussanne. Being produced naturally, the wine develops different facets with each opening. But every bottle that we've tried has been superb. Maybe a little too complex to drink on its own, this is made for fish and cooked seafood dishes and lighter white meats. Stunning.
Domaine la Grangette, Piquepoul Rosé 2019. 100% Piquepoul Noir.
The white Piquepoul grape (aka Picpoul) has two cousins: one grey and one black. The black grape is one of the range of grapes authorised in the blend of Châteauneuf du Pape and has been around for centuries. At Grangette they produce a lovely red with the grape and this rosé which has been a great hit this hot summer. It is light (only 12% abv) and has a lovely freshness to it, with strawberry and black cherry aromas. Great as an aperitif or with any fish or lighter meats off the barbecue.
Domaine St Georges d'Ibry, Excellence Rouge 2019.
Saint Georges d'Ibry is one of our favourite domains. Their wines are always good, they are incredibly consistent, and the packaging is good. A retailer's dream! This medal-winning Excellence is a well-structured blend of Merlot, Syrah and cabernet Sauvignon. The Cab and Syrah offer plenty of backbone and dark fruit, whilst the merlot lends a suppleness to the blend. Plenty of jammy fruit too. A perfect accompaniment for your red meat dishes and many cheeses.
Château de Nouvelles, 100% Carignan 2019.
Relatively young vines for Caignan (30 years old), but the winemaker has managed to temper the tannic and astringent properties of this grape variety. By using Carbonic Maceration (covering whole bunches with CO2 to create an anaerobic environment which leads to a gentle intracellular fermentation in the grape itself) at the start of the fermentation process, the winemaker can encourage the production of soft fruit aromas and flavours, dampen down the harshest of the tannins and reduce astringency. This Carignan is grown in the Fitou area in a harsh, dry and windy microclimate. The flavours are intense but it is still a lighter style of red wine, bursting with black fruit. Drink ideally very lightly chilled at 14-16°C.