2018 Domaine Cauhapé ‘Geyser’, 14.5%vol, (£13.95; Wine Society)
Jurancon in the foothills of the Pyrenees, SW France, is famed for its luscious sweet wines. Less celebrated, bizarrely, are its dry wines of which this, from Henri Ranonteu, is a glorious example. A blend of Gros & Petit Manseng, Camarelet, Courbu and Lauzet, it’s fresh, creamy, toasty and although hinting at sweetness, deliciously dry on the finish, making it a delectable and quirky aperitif.
2018 Domaine Paul Blanck Gewurztraminer, 13%vol, (£14.99; Waitrose)
They’ve been making wine at Domaine Paul Blanck & Fils in Kientzheim, Alsace, since the Renaissance and their wines grace the tables of France’s grandest restaurants. This fine Gewurz explains why. Spicy, aromatic and crammed with exuberant lychees and honeysuckle, it explodes in the mouth before finishing crisply dry. I can’t get enough of it.
2016 Boutinot ‘Les Six’ Cairanne, 14.5%vol (£13.15; All About Wine)
Cairanne is the newest AOC in the Southern Rhône, having previously been part of the Côtes du Rhône Villages appellation and I love its wines. This, a blend of Grenache (mainly), Mourvèdre, Syrah, Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise, much of it co-fermented in 6000 litre oak vats, is vibrantly fresh, complex and stylish. It’s hearty fare, too, with ripe dark fruit and plenty of rich, peppery spice.