This is the very first time I've tasted anything made from the Frappato grape, and it's a revelation. COS is a fully biodynamic, "natural" wine producer in Sicily, named after the surnames of the three founders, friends Giambattista Cilia, Giusto Occhipinti and Pinuccia Strano, launched in 1980. It is "pregno" with plush raspberry, cherry, dried herb and blackcurrant leaf loveliness. Just the right amount of furriness in the tannins too.
Sip with: fish baked with tomatoes, parsley and black olives.
Meyer-Nakel Illusion Blanc de Noir AHR 2015 $49
A wine I'd never heard of until this month is now one of my favourite things in the world. Located in the Ahr Valley, one of Germany's oldest, northernmost and smallest wine regions, Nakel are pinot specialists growing on a tiny 18ha site on steep, south-facing slopes of greywacke and weathered slate - so this is a rare wine indeed. Peaches, baked berries and cream, roast nectarine, vibrant minerality and citrus permeate the palate.
Sip with: smoked eel.
Crown Range Cellar China Girl Central Otago Pinot Noir 2014 $64.90
Handpicked fruit from the Chinamans' Terrace Vineyard in Bendigo has been crafted by pinot-guru Grant Taylor into a delicate and highly floral wine with clove and cherry characters on the nose and a rich, juicy and youthful palate boasting hints of dried herbs and charred tree bark on the finish. Created to celebrate the hardworking spirit of the 2000 Chinese miners who flocked to central Otago in the late-1800s seeking riches from the "new gold mountain".
Sip with: rosemary-studded roast lamb.
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