It looks like the British summer of 2019 is going out with a bang rather than a whimper, so here’s another warm-weather wine for you. Only this time, it’s a red.
For some reason, I’ve been drinking a lot of red this summer, but this G18 Grenache, by Australian producer Robert Oatley, is the only one I’ve actually had chilled. Because Grenache, alongside grapes like Gamay and some Pinot Noirs, is one of those lighter reds that benefits from being served at slightly cooler temperatures — especially when it’s used as a single varietal, rather than in a blend.
Aussie wines can conjure up dreams of beefy Shiraz and strong, oaky Chardonnay. But this one, from McLaren Vale near Adelaide, stands in contrast to those images with its deft touch of red berry fruits, and a background of herbal notes. It’s light to the point of being “thin”, with somewhat sharp tannins that should appeal to fans of Beaujolais.
Paradoxically, its suitability for chilling is both its main strength and its principal drawback because, perhaps inevitability, it’s not going to win any prizes against similarly-priced wines at room temperature.
So if you’re after body, depth and complexity then look elsewhere, but for red-wine purists who want a cool, bright and fruity outdoors drop, this’ll do nicely.
4 NINJA STARS
Robert Oatley Signature Series G-18 McLaren Vale Grenache: RRP: £13.95. Stockists: The Old Bridge Wine Shop, Bon Coeur Fine Wines, Hunstbridge, Cambridge Wine Merchants