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Natasha Heard’s guide to the best wines for spring and early summer drinking

We have all the bases covered with some tasty reds, fruity rosés, lip-smackingly good whites and glorious sparkling wines to stock up on this spring.

By Natasha Heard  |  April 13, 2022
bottle of wine

The spring season is an interesting one when it comes to wines with the odd, unexpected bursts of delightful sunny weather resulting in cravings for light whites and rosés, interspersed with cold snaps and Easter lamb meals calling for luscious reds. And of course, there will be a need for a celebratory fizz or two this year with the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations taking place, so it’s important to be stocked up with a great selection of winning wines to tuck into when the time calls.

We have all the bases covered with some tasty reds, fruity rosés, lip-smackingly good whites and glorious sparkling wines to stock up on this spring.

Red

Beefsteak Club Malbec, Mendoza Argentina

All-round crowd-pleaser Beefsteak Club Malbec is a smooth, rich and unoaked red wine perfect for complementing the wide range of meats and grilled food on offer at a barbecue. With a smooth palate and notes of ripe black fruits and plums, Beefsteak Club Malbec works beautifully well with any sticky sauces or glazes of choice.

A dish like this spiced duck is smoky and intense, and will benefit from a rich, smooth wine to accompany it. Beefsteak Club Malbec has a rich and layered mouthfeel with soft tannins and a long, smooth finish that will go well with and enhance the five spice and richness of the duck meat.

Price: £8
Where to buy: All major retailers including Tesco and Waitrose

Montaia Sangiovese IGP Rubicone

Montaia Sangiovese IGP Rubicone

A DOC wine, Sangiovese IGP Rubicone is only produced in the provinces of Forli-Cesena, Ravenna and Rimini and in seven municipalities in the province of Bologna. An elegant ruby red, the fragrance is of dark berry fruits, cherries and freshly picked strawberries.

Tangy with a subtle edge of tannin, it’s an extremely versatile wine and magnificent paired with red meats including salamis and prosciutto, hard and soft cheeses as well as light pasta dishes. Why not chill, to bring out its succulent fruitiness and sip during hot summer weather?

Price: £9.99
Where to buy: wickhamwine.co.uk

DV Catena Tinto Historico Malbec

DV Catena Tinto Historico Malbec

This Argentinian Malbec comes from Mendoza, and is produced by family-owned Catena Zapata. This wine is made using various techniques to help enhance the extract of aromas. It is fermented using wild yeasts to increase the complexity of the finished wine before spending 12 months in oak barrels. This delicious red displays gorgeous aromas of rich black and red berries, with a lengthy mid-palate and ripe silky finish.

Price: £12
Where to buy: Tesco

Leyda Reserva Pinot Noir

Leyda Reserva Pinot Noir

Bright ruby in colour, this Chilean Pinot Noir from the Leyda Valley offers a fruity nose of red berries and wild herb notes. On the palate, there are flavours of ripe berries, with a hint of minerality and a refreshing finish. Serve alongside a grilled vegetable salad or salmon for the ultimate pairing.

Price: £12
Where to buy: Tesco

Viñalba Gran Reservado Malbec 

Viñalba Gran Reservado Malbec 

This Gran Reservado Malbec is the flagship wine of Argentinian producer Viñalba, showcasing the stunning quality of Argentinian Malbec. Aged in new French oak barrels, this smooth red has notes of ripe black cherry and hints of violet and liquorice on the nose. On the palate, this wine boasts a smooth and rich feel, with plenty of dark fruit, soft oak and some lighter floral notes.

Price: £16
Where to buy: Tesco

Errazuriz Aconcagua Costa Pinot Noir 2020

Errazuriz Aconcagua Costa Pinot Noir 2020

Limpid ruby red colour with beautiful violets flashes, on the nose, this Pinot Noir from Aconcagua Costa in Chile is very intense, showing red fruits as raspberries, accompanied by floral notes that remind of rosehip, all framed by spices and a smoky note. Enjoy along with your first barbecue of the year or pair with the likes of a seared tuna steak.

Price: £18
Where to buy: The Oxford Wine Company

The Clarendelle Bordeaux Rouge 2016

This Bordeaux Rouge forms part of the Clarendelle family of wines, inspired by iconic Haut-Brion estate. The Bordeaux Rouge 2016 is a perfectly aged, fine blended wine that offers an authentic reflection of the Bordeaux terroir with consistency, quality and complexity. It’s new production method using regulated power from solar panels is a nod to the responsible winemaking procedure Domaine Clarence Dillon is so keen to make.

Clarendelle Bordeaux Rouge is fruity with aromas of red fruit and blackcurrant, a direct reflection of the warm days and rain in 2016. This wine is a great aperitif or the perfect elegant partner for a lunch and dinner in the coming spring.

Price: £19.80
Where to buy: Hedonism Wines

Chateau Malartic-Lagraviere 2016

Chateau Malartic-Lagraviere 2016

This red wine and vintage is the result of extremes in Bordeaux, France in 2016 – a particularly wet winter and spring, followed by one of the hottest and driest summers of the decade.

The biodiverse vineyards and 18th century Malartic-Lagraviere estate are run on the most sustainable farming methods, sheltering a diverse range of flora and fauna, with no use of herbicides. Grapes are harvested by hand in small batches and are individually inspected before selection.

Made from a blend of four grape varieties (Cabernet-Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet-Franc and Petit-Verdot) to create stunning and complex flavours and aromas, the wine is matured in temperature-controlled cellars in French oak barrels for 15-18 months.

This Bordeaux wine has a beautiful deep ruby hue, and has a dense, juicy attack that is clean and silky in texture. Expect aromas of red and dark fruits such as black cherry and blackcurrant, as well as a hint of spice, mocha-chocolate and smokiness.

Price: £50
Where to buy: Berry Bros & Rudd, vivino.com

White

Three Choirs Vineyard, May Hill

A medium sweet wine with distinct grapefruit on the nose and ripe citrus fruits on the palate with honeyed notes. This wine is full and well balanced, with the sweetness combining with fresh acidity to leave a clean, mouth-watering finish.

Price: £11.50
Where to buy: three-choirs-vineyards.co.uk

Journey’s End Winemaker’s Reserve Chardonnay 2021

Journey’s End Winemaker’s Reserve Chardonnay 2021

This Chardonnay is grown on the cool coastal vineyards of Stellenbosch, close to the ocean. Carefully ageing the wine for eight months in French oak, the winemaker brings subtle complexity to this rich but refreshing wine. This South African Chardonnay has the ability to pair with a range of dishes, including pork, richer fish like salmon or tuna, vegetarian meals and poultry.

Price: £12.50
Where to buy: Ocado

Montaia Pignoletto DOC Vino Frizzante

Montaia Pignoletto DOC Vino Frizzante

Montaia’s exquisite semi-sparkling dry white Pignoletto DOC Vino Frizzante is produced using solely pignoletto grapes grown in the Imola hills, a grape variety grown in the region since the Roman Empire. 

Produced using the cryomaceration technique with a secondary fermentation using the ‘Metodo Martinotti’ or ‘Charmat’ method, Montaia’s Pignoletto is sophisticated with a bright straw colour and delicate initial fragrance of yellow fruits and citrus. With flavours of fresh pears and red apples, this elegant white is delightful served with all white meats, fish, risotto and cheeses.

Price: £13.50
Where to buy: wickhamwine.co.uk

Tesco Finest Sancerre

Made from Sauvignon Blanc grapes produced in the famous vineyards of Sancerre. This dry, crisp wine has intense flavours of citrus and tropical fruit with a long creamy finish, making it a great match for goats’ cheese and salads.

Price: £14 
Where to buy: Tesco 

Denbies Chardonnay

Denbies Chardonnay

The 2019 Chardonnay was produced in a sterling year as part of the Denbies ‘Vineyard Select’ range by John Worontshak, their Australian-born chief winemaker. The grapes were handpicked over three days in late Autumn before being carefully pressed. After a slow, cool fermentation, the wine was gravity fed to oak barrels where it matured for nine months prior to bottling in 2020.

Upon pouring, the sophisticated nose entwines ripe lemon with delicate oak, while the palate is generous, with reams of nutmegged apple flavours. Pair this delicious wine with seafood and vegetable risotto.

Price: £23.99
Where to buy: ticketisland.azurewebsites.net

Hattingley Valley Reserve STILL Chardonnay

Hattingley Valley Reserve STILL Chardonnay

For a bright and balanced wine that is perfect for spring and summer supping, the Reserve STILL Chardonnay 2020 is made from 100% Chardonnay grapes and is pale gold in colour. Bursting with pronounced aromas of ripe orchard fruits and perfectly balanced by a creamy oak texture, this recent addition to the Hattingley Valley collection is offset with a natural bright acidity that leaves a rich mouthfeel and long, dry finish.

The buttery texture of camembert is lovely with the creamy, soft texture of chardonnay which cuts through the rich creaminess of the cheese due to the acidity. 

Price: £25
Where to buy: hattingleyvalley.com

Penfolds Bin 311 Chardonnay 2020

Penfolds Bin 311 Chardonnay 2020

Bin 311 Chardonnay truly reflects the winemakers’ mantra of going where the fruit grows best and where it best suits style. In true Bin 311 style, it exhibits lemon/lime aromas and a mineral acid backbone, with fleshy white peach and a spray of spring blossom. These elegant fruit flavours are complemented by barrel fermentation and maturation in mostly seasoned oak.

Price: £30
Where to buy: Harvey Nichols

Rosé

Three Choirs Vineyard, English Rosé

Three Choirs is one of the oldest and largest English vineyards, located midway between the Cotswolds and Forest of Dean. Its vines drape across 75 acres of south-facing slopes, with the hills creating a perfect micro-climate for growing flavoursome grapes. Unlike most English vineyards, Three Choirs grow and produce both high quality still and sparkling wines, with its very own winery on site. 

A fresh, refreshing rosé with subtle berry fruit aromas. An off-dry palate has classic English summer fruit and hints of summer hedgerow and a crisp, fresh finish make this ideal summer drinking as an aperitif or with fish dishes and barbecues.

Price: £12.99
Available to buy: three-choirs-vineyards.co.uk

Mediterranée Rosé 2020, IGP, Figuière, France

Mediterranée Rosé 2020, IGP, Figuière, France

Expect a deliciously fresh, crisp and dry rosé made in the Provencal style, from one of the top estates in the region. A salmon pink wine with a bouquet of citrus and exotic fruits, this is clean on the palate with flavours of kumquat and notes of yellow fruit ranging from peach to nectarine. Enjoy with charcuterie, salads and barbecue foods.

Price: £14.99
Where to buy: Jascots at Home

Roseline Prestige Côtes de Provence Rosé

Roseline Prestige Côtes de Provence Rosé

This delicious Provençal rosé is the perfect pink bottle to treat yourself and your guests this spring. With notes of yellow peach, and citrus on the nose, and a long, elegant finish, serve chilled alongside chicken Caesar salad or a light spring vegetable risotto.

Price: £15
Where to buy: Tesco

Sparkling

Mirabeau La Folie Sparkling Rosé

Mirabeau La Folie Sparkling Rosé

This beautiful sparkling rosé from renowned producer Mirabeau is the perfect addition to your spring dinner table. It boasts fruity aromas of apricot, yellow peach and passionfruit, with a creamy and white fruit palate. Serve with grilled chicken or a creamy asparagus risotto.

Price: £14
Where to buy: Tesco

Three Choirs Vineyard, Classic Cuvee

Three Choirs Vineyard, Classic Cuvee

This Classic Cuvee is a traditional bottle fermented English sparkling wine. The hints of crisp green apple and stone fruits on the palate are complemented by classic biscuit and brioche character typical of extended bottle maturation on the lees. This sparkling is everything you would expect of any superior sparkling wine; fresh, rich, rounded and full of complexity.

Price: £18.99
Where to buy: three-choirs-vineyards.co.uk

Chapel Down Rosé Brut

Chapel Down Rosé Brut

Made from 100% Pinot Noir and paired to perfection with fruit-based desserts, Chapel Down’s Rosé Brut bestows aromas of fresh strawberries, cherries, and redcurrants with background notes of warming toasted shortbread. Offering great balance and purity of character, delight in its crisp and fresh palate and light and effortless style.

Price: £26.99 for a 70cl bottle or £150 for a case of 6
Where to buy: Chapel Down (for the case) and Waitrose for individual bottles 

Chapel Down English Rose NV

Chapel Down English Rose NV

A classic blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Blanc, this rosé sparkling wine has aromas of redcurrant, strawberry and rosehip. A delicate rose petal pink, the fine and persistent bubbles within pair wonderfully with light canapés to kick off any special Easter celebrations.

Price: £29 for a 70cl bottle or £135 for a case of 6
Where to buy: Chapel Down (for the case) Ocado for individual bottles

Ridgeview Cavendish NV

Ridgeview Cavendish NV

Ridgeview, the pioneers of exceptional English sparkling wine for over 25 years, made in the heart of Sussex, offer a range of exceptional sparkling wines to bring all of your Easter celebrations to life. The traditional blend Cavendish is a rich golden colour with exceptionally fine bubbles and hints of delicious red fruits. The great acidity complements dishes with salmon and goats’ cheese beautifully.

Price £30
Where to buy: Harvey Nichols, Butler’s Wine

Hattingley Valley Classic Reserve

Hattingley Valley Classic Reserve
Image credit: The Electric Eye Photography

For something a little special this spring, opt for a bottle of Classic Reserve by award-winning Hattingley Valley. Pale gold in colour with delicate and fine long-lasting bubbles, the beautifully complex bouquet combines aromas of green apples with creamy nougat, freshly baked brioche and delicate toasted notes from ageing in bottle.

On the palate, the complexity continues with notes of soft lemon sherbet, biscuit and a subtle oak character. Refreshing and perfectly balanced, with a delightfully long finish, it’s the perfect pick to toast this spring.

Price: £32
Where to buy: hattingleyvalley.com

Ridgeview Fitzrovia Rosé

Ridgeview Fitzrovia Rosé

The Fitzrovia Rosé is a delicate pink colour with an abundance of fine bubbles and a fresh fruit finish. Serve as a refreshing aperitif or it will pair beautifully with roast lamb, smoked salmon dishes, while also being ideal to end some post roast celebrations to match with raspberry pavlova or fresh English strawberries for dessert.

Price £36
Where to buy: Waitrose, Harvey Nichols, Fenwick

Ridgeview Blanc de Noirs

Ridgeview Blanc de Noirs

The Blanc de Noirs is only made in the best vintages with a combination of the estate’s finest pinot grapes. The richest, fullest style of wine that Ridgeview produces, this is a unique gift worth being the table centrepiece during Easter. 

A deep golden colour with rich, earthy red fruit aromas, an abundance of red berry flavours makes this wine a fabulous partner for your classic Easter Sunday meal. The delicate spice and fuller body of this wine also complements dishes including light game, fowl, meatier fish or truffle.

Price £50
Where to buy: Fenwick, The Wine Society, Vinvm

Taittinger Prélude Grands Crus NV

Taittinger Prélude Grands Crus NV

The colour is a brilliant, pale yellow with silvery highlights, reflective of the high proportion of Chardonnay, while the bubbles are fine and form a lasting and delicately creamy mousse. The nose is subtle and fresh, and the initial mineral aromas quickly develop into green, floral scents with hints of elderflower and spicy cinnamon overtones.

Flavours are dominated by intense fresh citrus fruit which then give way to a much fuller, well-bodied and mellow taste with flavours reminiscent of white peaches in syrup. The finish is long, rich and extremely expressive, and this wine can be enjoyed as an aperitif but has the structure to match grilled fish and seafood.

Price: £56
Where to buy: Harrods  

Prices correct at time of publication