£8.50–£9.99, Lekker Wines, The Solent Cellar, Twisted Cellar, Noble Green Wines and others*
The eye-catching label is a word-free zone, so I've given the name the producer Philip Cox of Cramele Recas uses, but the back label calls it Solara Glou Glou Natural Red. A glou glou in Romania is a fruity, young wine to drink chilled, like a French vin de soif, and this is exactly that: a bundle of bouncy, fruity, unoaked freshness that cries out to be lightly chilled. But there's a bit more to it than that. The juicy raspberry fruit is cut by refreshing cranberry bite and acidity, there's a streak of green capsicum and spice and light tannins grip the velvet softness.
Merlot is the mainstay, but 25% Cabernet Sauvignon makes its presence felt, and although there's no vintage on the label it's 2019. The vintage can't be stated because the wine is sold as the equivalent of Vin de Table (no mention of grape varieties or appellation) and that's dictated by the absence of added sulphur dioxide (there's a regulatory minimum for DOC and IGT wines in Romania ). The grapes come from Panciu in Vrancea in the east of the country.
Even with a bit more stuffing than many a vin de soif, this is a wine to enjoy cool with the likes of pasta, pizza, aubergine parmigiana, shepherd's pie, lamb cutlets or smoked, spicy or cured sausages. 13.5%
Solara Natural Organic Red Wine, Romania
*£8.50, Lekker Wines; £8.99, The Solent Cellar; £9, Twisted Cellar; £9.50 (mix 6 price), Noble Green Wines; £9.95, The Stroud Wine Co; £9.99, The Whalley Wine Shop; Cheers Wine Merchants; £10.60, Turton Wines; 10.95, Seven Cellars; Tivoli Wines; £47.94 (+ £7.47 shipping) for 6, Iconic Wines