A friend popped round unexpectedly at 9.30pm the other day, just as I was getting a lasagne out of the oven, tired, whole day of work, and I’d forgotten to eat. There were a lot of bottles of wine open. Most of them curled and pinched and pippy and blurry and mean.
I poured us each a glass of the least bad option, one that wasn’t pinched but wasn’t quite making my recommendations list.
It was sangiovese.
I love sangiovese but it was sangiovese from South Africa – big, rich, intense and FULL ON, without the gentle riffs of truffles, dust and mushrooms you find in Italy.
But what it was was clean and clear, like a night when you look at the sky and the moon is just there, crisply outlined.
It was also very thick, a bit like dark red and black berries, and a touch smoky.
“This is like drinking red wine and smoking fags in between,” I said to my friend. “That’s my tasting note.”
“I hate you,” he said. “Because I don’t know anything about wine but you’re right.”
We finished the bottle.
Here’s the wine. It’s from the Co-op.
(And here’s my Telegraph piece on Co-op wines in general. Check out the Villa Cafaggio Chianti while it’s on offer)