£13.75, or £12.50 in any 12-bottle mix, Lea & Sandeman
This is one of the most unusual and delicious wines I’ve come across in ages (quirky wines can be more challenging than delicious). It’s named Orange because of its colour, but it’s not one of the so-called orange wines that have a bit of a cult following in fashionable London restaurants: those are made from white grapes where the juice, skins and pips have been fermented all together instead of just fermenting the clear juice. This wine is essentially a rosé, a pretty tawny pink made from red Pinot Noir grapes – and, yes, made in the Czech Republic, in Moravia to be precise. It has lovely summer-pudding fruitiness and a texture as smooth as silk. Drink it chilled (not too heavily) as an aperitif, or serve with fish or lightly cured and smoked meats. Keep it in mind for summer weddings or garden parties. The trio behind Stapleton & Springer are two American brothers, one of whom, Craig Stapleton, is a former American ambassador to the Czech Republic, and a Czech winemaker – obviously a talented one because there are also two very good red Pinot Noirs in the range.
Stapleton & Springer Orange Pinot Noir 2014, Moravia, Czech Republic
£12.50, or £13.75 in any 12-bottle mix, Lea & Sandeman shops and leaandsandeman.com