Southern Rhone, France, $138, cork seal
The air pollution in Hong Kong has been absolutely foul over the last couple of weeks. In the picture - behind the bottle and my village - you should be able to see the bright lights of Shenzhen; instead all you get is heavy grey filth. I grabbed this from Le Vin Rouge, Yuen Long's newest wine shop, on the recommendation of owner Thomas. It's made by Domaine du Pegau, who have a reputation for producing excellent Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The Grenache, Syrah and Merlot fruit that make up the wine come from de-classified Châteauneuf-du-Pape grapes and two vineyards that fall just outside this appellation. As it's classed as a vin-de-table there's unfortunately no vintage date.
It's a deep purple black colour, with a hint of crimson. The nose is pleasant affair, full of ripe red fruits: cherry, raspberry and plum. There's also a little sprinkling of Mediterranean herbs around the edge. The palate has a lovely savoury tartness and bright red fruit flavours; cranberries stand out. It's got a beautiful feel in the mouth, with lingering chalky tannins creating texture and interest. The Rhone is one of my favourite wine producing areas and this brings a bit of its magic at a decent price. Plan Pegau is certainly worth trying and certainly a lot better than air pollution.
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