JWL Issue #126: 3 Chenins to Try

January 27, 2021

It's a big day at Wine List HQ. Yesterday our surplus stock arrived from our old supplier. And this week our February wines arrive. We will be shipping all orders in-house now.

I'm reminded of the Tony Hseish quote 'never outsource your core competency.'

While logistics and fulfilment won't ever be our corest of core competencies, if there's one thing I've learnt over the last year – it's that people expect deliveries to be on-time and flawless. We've let you down so far, but we are now taking our biggest step to change that.

We've not completed our stock check yet but we've already spotted some bottles we previously thought were out of stock. Watch out for incoming orders soon.

Our JANUARY10 discount is still running throughout all of January.

Dry January

According to our recent poll on Instagram, 15% of you are doing Dry Jan this year. We tasted a couple of low & no alcohol winese from Co-Op on our YouTube channel, which you can rewatch here. If you're already thinking forward to Feb, head to the surplus store now.

Instagram polls

It wasn't only Dry Jan we've been polling you on. 44% told us they research supermarket wines before buying them. Despite that, 54% of you write down wine notes on your first tastes at home. If you're not yet following us on Instagram, follow us now.

Watch the January tasting

Last Wednesday, head of wine Isabelle Lynch led you through Le Merle & Gavi. We seem to be pretty evenly split on favourites of these two. If you missed the tasting live, fear not - you can rewatch it here.


A chenin kick

I've been on a bit of a chenin kick recently. I fell in love after tasting Mick Kraven's 2018 Karibib (£21.5 from BBR). This was peachy, waxy, rich, with a creme bruleé character and a salty finish. For anyone wanting to explore top-quality chenin, this is a great place to start. Don't forget South Africa.

Meanwhile, Tesco Finest Chenin Blanc (currently £6) is a steal. Rich pear, vanilla, and a touch of spice make this punch well above its weight.

Finally, those lucky enough to have a Booth's (or Amazon) near you, their own brand Vouvray is very good at £9.99. Off-dry, aromatic, and full of peaches, baked apples, and light white pepper.


How do you choose wine in a restaurant?

Another reader question. We've been exploring this in a multi-part series on Instagram, but in addition that we've shared a couple of pointers here.

This is an age-old question, and there's always a few different ways to do it. We polled our team internally for a few different routes you can take.

"I always choose the weirdest one" – says head of wine Isabelle. "The well known wines always get marked up a little bit more – whereas the cheaper, weirder ones have to be worth it to stay on there."

I usually do something similar, picking the thing I've not heard of. But, that said, if you have an idea of the type of wine you want, I'll ask quite directly "I want something that tastes a bit peachy, floral, and textural, and costs under £50" usually helps steer things in the right direction.

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