We want our selection of reds to challenge your perceptions and taste buds. These wines range from delicate, fragrant and poised through to muscular and intense. Some of the most well-known varieties are listed separately including Pinot and Syrah (including Shiraz), the others are listed by family and style:
Merlot and Cabernet are most often used in blends, thus it makes more sense to list Merlot alongside blends and its good friends Malbec and Carmenere which it has many similarities with. Likewise, as well as Cabernet Sauvignon, this category also includes blends, its more floral sister Cabernet Franc and its broody, masculine cousin Petit Verdot.
Our favourite category is 'Fruity Forward', a bit like us. The core of this category is Gamay - whether it is from a Beaujolais Cru or from Hawkes Bay or Central Otago. As well as Gamay we also include similar, vibrant, light-weight blends and alpine varieties such as Frappato, Lagrein, St Lauren, Ploussard and more.
Likewise, Rhone Reds features all the other autochthonous red varieties of the Northern and Southern Rhone. Starting with Grenache but including Cinsault, Mourvedre, Clairette, Carignan and others of the seemingly infinite list of grapes grown in the Rhone.
The wines of Italy and the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal) are listed in two separate sections which we admit, cannot do justice to the depth and complexity of the country. We list both native examples and new-world expressions of these varieties together. These are such interesting, diverse regions that we cannot specialize in either, instead of trying to offer a selection of the most exciting, diverse wines we can find from each.
Finally, that brings us to everything else: 'Other Varieties'. As we have covered off the lighter, fruity styles these tend to be more masculine, powerful expressions including the Austrians Zweigelt and Blaufrnkish, Californian Zinfandel, other native reds and more bigger blends that don't fit in anywhere else. Don't overlook these wines, they are delicious.