Francois Lurton from Chile and Argentina
Stylistically, Francois Lurton's wines evoke his bordelais background - they are a blend of new world ripeness with an old world love of structure in general and acidity in particular.
If you think South American wines are no more than cheap-and-cheerful fruit-forward crowd-pleasers, think again.
Humo Blanco Sauvignon Blanc 2016 (£12.99) barrel-fermented, more textured than expressive; full waxy and rich
Clos de Lolol 2015 (£17.40) SB/Ch textured, rounded and long. Good.
Humo Blanco Cabernet Franc 2015 (£13.99) ripe, supple, deft clean and pure
Clos de Lolol Red 2013 (£17.40) Syrah blend, spicy with grilled notes, soft and supple
Gran Araucano Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 (£24) Bordelais-style spice and leather with new world fruit; very clean, pure and precise. Long supple and harmonious. Good.
Alka 2014 (£49.95) Carmenere, complex with pure blueberry fruit and varietal soy and coffee; deft, long and supple with gently assertive tannins. Very Good.
Bodega Piedra Negra
Gran Lurton Blanco 2014 (£16.99) Sauvignon Vert, oak fermented, textured leesy and long. Good.
Gran Lurton Red 2011 (£16.99) CS blend, bramble fruit with grilled, spicy notes; fresh, supple, long and adept. Good.
Gran Malbec 2011 (£22) blowsy yet complex blockbusting 15.8% Malbec; black and sour cherries, spice; long and supple with a warming, grippy finish.
Chacayes 2013 (£49.95) Malbec blend, impressively big spicy, ripe and supple wine with dark fruit and grip. Good - needs further aging.
Dinner - the taste-off
Over our Peruvian dinner, we paired off some museum pieces from both estates' collections.
Gran Araucano Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 vs Gran Lurton 2005 (CS blend) the fruit in both is starting to dry out a little, the Araucano is Medoc-esque with capsicum and tobacco leaf, the Lurton is more Rhone-like with dark fruit, spice and a custardy texture.
Alka 2003 (Carmenere) vs Chacayes 2003 (Malbec blend) the Chacayes is the clear winner here; it shows beautifully, with complex peppery-minty dark bramble fuits and an harmonious structre; Very Good. The Alka feels more evolved and dried out, but the acidity is still fresh and the texture supple.
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Francois Lurton Dinner