A Cretan Wine Amongst Five of the Best Wines You’ve Never Heard Of

Given the global age we live in, it should come as no surprise that there are literally thousands of different wines out there that deserve to be sniffed, sipped and slurped. And yet most of us, I suspect, fall into the trap of only ever drinking our tried and tested favorites, whether New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs or Napa Cabernets. This spring I’ve attempted to break the cycle and find wines that, stylistically, are both perfect for this time of year and highly unusual. Here are five springtime wines you’ve probably never heard of.

2014 Juanicó Benteveo Chardonnay | £7 or €8

When you think of Chardonnay, your first thought is probably Burgundy, Australia or California. But this ubiquitous grape has found a good home in Uruguay. What’s so unusual about Uruguay wines is that they have a much more European style than any of their South American neighbors. Boy does this impress! Unoaked, it’s lively and fresh, with crunchy white fruit and plenty of vitality. An absolute bargain Alcohol: 12.5%

2011 Edoardo Miroglio Soli Pinot Noir | £10 or €14

OK, we’ve all heard of Pinot Noir, but grown in Bulgaria? Those who were regularly buying value wine in the 1970s may have picked up a bottle of Bulgarian Cabernet Sauvignon, but Pinot? Well, it’s actually really rather good for the money. Edoardo Miroglio’s wine is fresh with pretty red fruit that really wouldn’t look out of place in a lineup of entry-level Burgundy. Alcohol: 13.5%

2013 Frittmann Cserszegi Füszeres | £11 or €15

Hands up if you’ve heard of the Cserszegi Füszeres grape variety? No, me neither. I was introduced to this Hungarian wine by British importer Caspar Bowes and it’s nice alternative to Sauvignon Blanc. Aromatic with a fresh, fruity and rhubarb nose, it finishes with a dry streak that imparts a little kick. A bracing aperitif. Alcohol: 12%

2014 Karavitakis Vidiano Klima | £10 or €14

Crete may be the largest wine producer of the Greek islands, but it’s still home to some little-known indigenous grape varieties. This wine is made by Nikos Karavitakis, who is the fourth generation to work the land here. It has an intriguing nose of baked apples and dried almonds, with a hint of lime on the finish. Alcohol: 13%

2013 Stobi Žilavka | £10 or €14

Made from the little-known Žilavka grape variety, this wine is an absolute delight. Pale with a nice clear straw color, it hails from the Republic of Macedonia. It has a lovely perfumed nose, with notes of quince, ripe peaches and lemon. Once sipped, it’s juicy and light with a slight pepperiness. A great match with spicy food. Alcohol: 12%

Wall Street Journal

You may also like...