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WINE OF THE WEEK: The Society's Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon 2018, Maipo, Chile

£7.50, The Wine Society

In a tasting of 20-plus wines from The Wine Society that included, among others, an excellent Brézème rouge, Barolo, Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir (the two latter in the Exhibition range) and Shaw & Smith Adelaide Hills Shiraz, I wasn't expecting to be bowled over by the £7.50 Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon. But I was. Yes, bowled over. I'm not remotely suggesting it's on a par with those other four reds (variously priced between £16 and £26), but for sheer value this is very hard to beat, especially as you could cellar it for a couple of years.

The nose takes you straight into a core of deep, ripe, crunchy blackcurrant fruit, suffused with cedary spice, smoky chocolate oak and earthy minerals, and the palate supports it with pebble-smooth, firm tannins and a streak of herbal freshness. The excellent 2018 vintage has done its bit, but all credit to the Society's buyer for Chile, Toby Morrhall, and the giant Concha Y Toro who produced it, including ageing it in French oak barrels. All in all, an inviting, powerful wine with more intensity and class than we have a right to expect at this price.

Now for food: perfect for braised lamb shanks, rich stews (meat or vegetarian), including with a bit of chilli, winter roasts, proper bolognese ragù, or aged hard cheese. 14.5%.

The Society's Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon 2018, Maipo, Chile


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