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The Liberator, Francophile, Wood Winters £11
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Are you a red in winter, white in summer kind of drinker? Struggling a bit with the current in-betweeny season?  You need the wine answer to scarf and sunglasses weather, which frankly in Scotland is quite a lot of the time…

There are many options for a scarf and sunglass wine, and one of my go-to ‘mid-season’ wines is Chenin Blanc, especially one that has been near a barrel. Chenin is one of the most versatile grapes, it can be made into fizzy, super crisp and dry, creamy and rich, off-dry and sweet wines and does them all well. When they are barrel fermented, which is a bit of a South African speciality (amongst other things), you get a depth to the wine that really is like popping on your favourite cashmere scarf, without losing any of the snappy crispness of the apple, citrus and peach flavours synonymous with the grape.

Not only are these wines deliciously satisfying, without being over heavy, they are also superb for eating with. They are a bit goldilocks, not too heavy but not too light with a combination of acidity and body that makes them extremely versatile. You could have them with most white meat, fish or vegetarian dishes and they’d go well. Just nothing too light and subtle or the wines will overpower the food.

The Liberator, Francophile is a great example of one of these wines; it’s on the lighter end of the oak scale but is naturally fermented and allowed to sit on its lees, a winemaking process where the yeast from the fermentation sits in the wine for a few months, adding a bit more texture. This process creates a wine that is fresh and refreshing but that won’t make your mouth pucker. The flavours are subtle, ripe apple, citrus with a deeper savoury note and the tiniest suggestion of honey but they linger in a way that sends you back for another sip.

The Liberator is a slightly unusual set up, they ‘liberate’ parcels of wines from vineyards meaning they get to play around with the styles of wine they make designing each as an ‘episode’ with video, comic strips… not bog standard, just like their wines. (N. Welch)

Previous wines recommended for the month of April here 

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