Fathers’ Day will be different this year but it presents a poignant opportunity to share the love—

Fathers’ Day will be different this year. While we’ve been parted from our loved ones, it presents a poignant opportunity to share the love by sending a terrific gift to make your Dad’s day.

With English Wine Week kicking off this week, one option is to buy local – and my pick from Aldi comes from the scrumptious 2018 vintage which was our best homegrown crop to date.

If you want a rare trophy to pour and your pockets are deep, Champagne Gosset have just released their “12 ans Brut”, a sparkling wine of such dazzling complexity that it feels like you’ve simultaneously swallowed a torch and a dictionary.

Seriously, I loved it, sipping with Cellar Master Odilon de Varine via Zoom this week, his philosophy that “Champagne is not only bubbles, it is wine first” shows the care and treatment he gives to his work.

Based on the 2006 vintage with around 8% blended in from reserve wines governed by style rather than vineyard or vintage, this 12 year old sparkler is built for the long haul yet is also tasting delicious right now, especially if you decant a small amount into a carafe and then into a glass as you sip it to unleash its full depth of deliciousness.

With only 12,000 bottles produced, it is rare indeed and expected to sell for around £92 via Fine + Rare releasing imminently.

For a great value range of European wines, M&S have just launched their “Classics” range which prides the wines on being typical of their grape variety and place – and they’ve nailed it.

I’ve picked just one out to recommend this week as a great value option to share with Dad (and because my dear Dad loves Rioja so much!) but dive into this carefully curated range all between £8-£12 and taste for yourself.

For something more quirky and off the beaten track, Waitrose have Atma Assyrtiko, a lovely white Greek gem from one of my favourite winemakers, Apostolos Thymiopoulos which at £11.99 is a powerhouse of vim and verve.

As for me, I’d settle for a pint of Harvey’s Best Bitter – and I cannot wait to enjoy the experience of sipping it in the pub once more.

This week’s guest on Olly’s podcast is Tamzin Outhwaite, tune in at www.aglasswith.com. From Monday 22nd, Dan Snow joins Olly for the next episode. And remember to grab the offer to buy 3 or more bottles of Babylonstoren’s 2020 Mouvèdre Rosé and get a 500ml tin of their Extra Virgin Olive Oil as a gift. Simply visit www.thenewt.co.uk/aglasswith

OLLY’S PICK OF THE BUNCH

“Classics” Rioja Reserva 2014 (14%) £9 M&S. I have a feeling the little red capsule on top of this new Classics range will become a badge of trust. Decent quality here from the Rioja in the range, with richness and lively grip after a 24 months soak in barrel and a further year in bottle – all for under a tenner. Get your roast lamb on and serve this to your father!

Exquisite Collection Lyme Block 2018 (12%) £9.99 Aldi. Glorious white with stacks of scent and piercing refreshment. An ambassador for English quality to pour for English wine week and great to give as a gift.

Macon-Lugny, Les Genievres 2018 (13%) £13.90 tanners-wines.co.uk. Poise and delicacy along with a fruity flourish sets this classic white Burgundy apart and for the price is a little bit of lockdown luxury to treat your Dad with.

1000 Stories Zinfandel 2017 (14.5%) from £14.99 Majestic. Boom! This is as deep and fruity as the Mariana Trench stuffed with giant blueberries. Expect a velvet plush massive wine with huge power and exuberance. A tasty treat to delight your Dad.

WINE OF THE WEEK

Summer Road Old Vine Grenache 2019 (14.5%) Waitrose £7.49*. What a star red wine! This leapt out at a recent tasting and has glorious aromatic crunchy fruit and feels surprisingly light on its feet. Vibrant with beautiful intensity, it’s steal of the century at the this price. *down from £8.49 until 30th June.

This column was originally published in EVENT for the Mail on Sunday, Sunday 21st June 2020

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