Lifestyle

Discovering Delicious Wines from 8Wines Christmas Tasting Case

02/01/2023

When falling into the comfort of winter, it’s easy to also fall into the same familiar wines. For me, that’s is a Primitivo, Riesling, or a Prosecco if I’m feeling fancy! But if the pandemic taught me anything is that there’s no point waiting for a special occasion to pop open that bottle of good quality wine we save for special occasions.  I say cheers to treating ourselves with a great selection of wines in the new year!

Christmas Pack with white, red and sparkling wine bottles by 8wines

Christmas Premium Tasting Case

I recently received a lovely trio of wines as a gift from 8wines. While Christmas is past now, the wines they provided from their “Christmas Premium” tasting case still cover all the bases for any winter feast.

The special selection comprised a sparkling rosé from Alsace, a bold red in the form of Châteauneuf-du-Pape in France, and an elegant Chardonnay from Western Australia. All three French wines were outstanding and unique in their own way! The wine tasting cases by 8wines offer great selection to make your food and wine pairings easy!

A classic Bosquet des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape Tradition 2020 red wine from France

Domaine Allimant Laugner Cremant d’Alsace Rosé

The sparkling rosé is from Domain Allimant-Laugner, a joint venture of two great Alsatian wine-making houses. The winemakers own a modest 12 hectares of vineyards around the village of Orschwiller, which is situated between Strasbourg and Colmar, close to the Swiss border.

Domaine Allimant Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Rosé wine from France

The wine mousse is an appetising pink, and the extra bit of bottle fermentation is evident in the wine’s considerable body and smooth texture. This Domaine Allimant Laugner Cremant d’Alsace Rosé has a generous nose of aromatic flowers and red fruits, with those classic hints of strawberry and cherry.

Domaine Allimant Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Rosé wine from France

On the palate, the fruit is utterly pure and bright- strong red fruit flavours backed up by spirited acidity. This clean character continues into the finish. Despite the feeling of novelty that comes with a bottle of sparkling rosé, this is a very good wine. It is well deserving of its 92 points!

Domaine Allimant Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Rosé wine from France

Cremant d’Alsace Rosé is perfect as an aperitif and to make a toast for the new year, even beating my favourite Prosecco from Valdobbiadene in my personal list!

Domaine Allimant Laugner Cremant d'Alsace Rosé wine from France

Moving on from sparkling wine to red, an ideal accompanying to a roast dinner or cheese board is the GSM blend from Bosquet des Papes. There is a lot to be said for saving Châteauneuf-du-Pape for the winter season – those “garrigue” notes are so warming.

Bosquet des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape Tradition 2020

Bosquet des Papes red wine, part of Christmas Pack of wine bottles by 8wines

This one is Bosquet des Papes’ flagship, named “Tradition”. It’s a classic Bosquet des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape Tradition 2020 made mostly from Grenache. Châteauneuf-du-Pape is an Appellation d’origine contrôlée (AOC) located in the Rhône wine region in southeastern France.

This red leans towards the full-bodied side, with its intense fruits and lush tannins. Although the fruits were sourced from all over Châteauneuf-du-Pape (Bosquet des Papes own about 40 vineyard parcels), it doesn’t lose any concentration. It captures a lot of the complexity you can find within the appellation, without being overwhelming.

This wine was given 93 points, and that seems fair. It shows a nose full of black fruits, some cassis, some plum, and underneath there are wonderful earthy hints of cigar and leather. Bosquet des Papes make their wines for ageing and this one can probably be laid down for another 6 or 7 years, giving it time to develop some gamier flavours.

A classic Bosquet des Papes Chateauneuf Du Pape Tradition 2020 red wine from France

Finally, 8wines also sent over a New World Chardonnay. This one can fit into this winter dinner narrative as an alternative pairing for some lighter winter dishes, like roasted pumpkin or squash, or as a pairing for post-dinner cheese snacks.

Red, white and sparkling wine bottled as part of Christmas tasting case by 8wines

Fraser Gallop Estate Parterre Chardonnay 2020

The Chardonnay is from Margaret River in Western Australia, so it’s safe to expect good things from this Chardonnay. There is a fun fact associated with Margaret River: the excellent quality of wine here is attributed to the “Gingin” clone, which made its way here from California. That’s also why there are some similarities in character between Chardonnays from Western Australia and Western USA, and it’s unlike any of the Australian white wines I tasted before.

Red, white and sparkling wine bottled as part of Christmas tasting case by 8wines

Chardonnay is also (more than any other grape) subject to the whim of the winemaker. Fraser Gallop Estate aspires to make Chardonnay in the French style. The Fraser Gallop Estate Parterre Chardonnay 2020 is an elegant and compelling wine, deserving of its 95 points from 8wines. The estate’s proximity to the ocean gives the grapes a longer ripening season and a delightfully refreshing and aromatic character. On the nose, there are definite notes of citrus fruit and white-fleshed peach. The ageing influence is more subtle, but notions of toast and vanilla are there – it spent 9 months in oak before release.

The yeasty element from fermentation is more apparent on the palate. It has a rich, creamy texture, which is complemented by a tightrope walker feel of wiry acidity. There are hints of tropical pineapple and melon, but the palate is dominated by bright citrus fruits.

Conclusion

All in all, this is a great selection of wines for the winter months, toeing the line between accessibility and high quality. The Margaret River Chardonnay is particularly noteworthy and well worth picking up on its own because the price is fantastic.

8Wines, the ultimate destination for wine lovers across Europe. Their team of wine specialists scours the globe to bring you the finest wines from France, Moldova, Croatia, and beyond. If you’re ordering wines within the European Union, do have a look at what 8wines has to offer! Their tasting cases are sure to impress even the most discerning of palates.

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