The ultimate gift for your palate this Christmas season

This is one of the few English white wines that can stand shoulder to shoulder with elite-class white Burgundies.

2018 Blackbook, Pygmalion chardonnay, England
2018 Blackbook, Pygmalion chardonnay, England

£25, blackbookwinery.com The Battersea-based Blackbook “urban winery” is run by the mercurially talented husband and wife team Sergio and Lynsey Verrillo. I popped into their brilliant set-up, based in an old British Rail arch not far from Battersea Park, the other day and found no less than four wines which I wanted to alert you to immediately. These wines will recalibrate your palates for what we all hope will be a far happier year next year.

Pygmalion is sourced from the Greyfriars Vineyard in the North Downs of the Surrey hills. The grapes are whole-bunch pressed into Burgundy barrels where they undergo natural fermentation using indigenous yeast. The wine then stays in these barrels for a further 20 months and the results are nothing short of sublime. The 2018 was a relatively warm vintage so there is extraordinary flavour and also finesse here. Sergio is a master at barrel selection and so the balance and class are unmistakable, making this one of the only white wines in the country which can truly stand shoulder to shoulder with elite-class white Burgundies.

In addition, 2019 Painter of Light chardonnay (£19) is a crystalline, tangy, energetic wine with a chablis-shaped attack; 2019 Nightjar pinot noir (£19) is tremulous, hedgerow-soaked and plum and cranberry-smooched; and 2019 The Mix Up Vol II (£17.50) is a zany chardonnay/pinot gris mash-up which leaves you gasping with joy. Grab The Lock-in Case: 2 (£110) and get a bottle of each of my tips and a couple more beauties besides. This is the ultimate gift for your palate this season!

Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (matthewjukes.com)

Recommended

China’s economy is heading for a sharp slowdown
Chinese economy

China’s economy is heading for a sharp slowdown

With a slowing property market, Covid lockdowns sapping growth and the CSI 300 stock index down by 22% this year, China’s economy is in trouble.
6 Oct 2022
5 of the world's best stocks
Share tips

5 of the world's best stocks

Concentrating on a few highly profitable companies that excel in their fields can reduce the overall risk in your portfolio, says Rupert Hargreaves. H…
6 Oct 2022
The dangers of derivatives as the “Goldilocks era” ends
Investment strategy

The dangers of derivatives as the “Goldilocks era” ends

That this is no longer a benign environment for investors, says Andrew Van Sickle. But – as the recent pension-fund derivatives blow-up shows – not ev…
6 Oct 2022
There’s still time to submit your energy meter reading to avoid a higher charge
Personal finance

There’s still time to submit your energy meter reading to avoid a higher charge

You need to submit your gas and electricity readings as soon as possible to avoid overpaying after the October energy price increase.
6 Oct 2022

Most Popular

Should you take a 25% tax-free pension lump sum in instalments?
Pensions

Should you take a 25% tax-free pension lump sum in instalments?

Taking out a 25% tax-free lump sum sounds appealing but it might not be the best way to manage your pension
30 Sep 2022
Markets may have bounced, but this is not the end of the bear market
Stockmarkets

Markets may have bounced, but this is not the end of the bear market

Stocks are back on the rise, commodities and precious metals prices are up – even the pound has rebounded. But none of this is typical of bull markets…
5 Oct 2022
October’s Premium Bonds: how to check if you are a winner
Savings

October’s Premium Bonds: how to check if you are a winner

NS&I has added almost 110,000 more prizes to October’s Premium Bond draw – are you a winner?
4 Oct 2022