Tesco Beaujolais Rouge 2020
France (12.5%, Tesco, £5)
Ridiculously good for a fiver, this light-bodied red is lively and bright with a smooth rush of red berry-scented fruit and a tinge of graphite. The family of Charlotte Lemoine, the Tesco buyer, are from Beaujolais: perhaps that’s why she knows how to find such good wine?
La Marinière Muscadet 2020
France (11.5%, Waitrose, £6.49)
Muscadet fell out of fashion as white wine drinkers who like this bone dry, marine style flocked instead to picpoul. But as this wine proves, muscadet is now looking much better value. This one’s like soft clouds of lemon with a salty lift.
Domaine de Mandeville Viognier 2020
Languedoc-Roussillon, France (13%, M&S, £7.50)
One of the most charming whites (and most unattractive labels) on the M&S shelves, this marries a delightful, subtle peach and jasmine perfume with a clean and citrussy vibe. Absolutely not a heavy or sluggish viognier, it’s dewy and fresh.
Domaine du Cros Lo Sang del Pais 2019
Marcillac, France (13%, The Wine Society, £9.50)
A distinctive, lightish red made in south-west France from the fer servadou grape, this is a red with the bloody tang of iron and it’s superb with lamb kebabs, steak-frites, green salad with a very mustardy dressing or cheesy pasta.
STAR BUY Daniel Dampt Petit Chablis 2019
France (12%, Haynes, Hanson & Clark, £15.95)
I know what you’re thinking: “That’s an expensive Petit Chablis.” But it’s a brilliant one, like lemon blossom with cool, wet stone and an unexpected complexity. Honestly, superb. You’ll want to buy it by the case, at which point it gets cheaper (£14.20 a bottle).
Gilles Bonnefoy La Madone Gamay sur Volcan 2020
Côtes du Forez, France (13%, Haynes, Hanson & Clark, £16)
A gamay that is not from Beaujolais but the old volcanic terrain of the Côtes du Forez, an appellation in central France close to the source of the Loire. Smooth, almost impossibly juicy and brimful with the flavours of squished berries.
Domaine Catherine & Pierre Breton Trinch Bourgueil 2019
Loire, France (13.5%, thesourcingtable.com, £18)
Loire cabernet franc that’s suggestive of the shimmer of new leaves, of summer berries and the grain of dry soil. It’s biodynamically produced in the region of Bourgueil and is fantastic with pink lamb or duck.
Daniel Chotard Sancerre 2019
France (13.5%, Berry Bros & Rudd, £19.95)
A Sancerre that’s in a warm and waxy rather than a flinty and grassy register, this is all orange and lemon blossom and yellow stone fruit. Jancis Robinson has already pointed out that it has characteristics reminiscent of a Cotat Sancerre and I agree.
STAR BUY Domaine de la Taille aux Loups Montlouis-sur-Loire Rémus 2019
Loire, France (13%, Lay & Wheeler, £20.68)
From a fabled domaine, here’s a dry Loire chenin blanc that is mouth-wateringly tart, with classic flavours of Bramley and floral quince yet also something else. An elemental wine that manages to be precise and ethereal.