Our Own Selection: six of the best


Our Wine Director Mark Pardoe MW picks six of his favourites from our own-label range

Almost every wine in our Own Selection range has a back-story – an event, opportunity or style that sets it apart, giving the wine its individuality. Here are some of my favourites, and why.

Meursault: Burgundy’s restricted size and complexity of vineyard organisation and ownership make it very hard to find a wine of this quality in sufficient quantity. So Meursault grower Patrick Javillier comes to the rescue, and we tap into his knowledge of local growers capable of providing the quality we need. Patrick’s family business does all the élevage for us, so it carries his house style of creamy opulence, but also with his hallmark of lemony acidity. (£43.00)

Old-Blocks Chenin Blanc: I have been very fortunate to stay with Shelley Sandell at her remote farmhouse in the lee of the starkly beautifully Piekenierskloof mountains, where leopards roam. The oldest Chenin Blanc vines on her farm are now 40 years old and, when we found she had made a separate cuvée from them, it was a perfect addition to the range. This is the second vintage of this grapefruit and quince-scented wine, with a hint of the buchu herb which grows wild on the estate. (£14.50)

Good Ordinary White: Good Ordinary Claret’s less famous little brother – think Harpo to Groucho. In its own way, this is just an equally rewarding wine, concentrating on Sauvignon Blanc and its affinity to certain soil types to accentuate a mineral and gourmand style. It’s more akin to a Sancerre than a New Zealand Sauvignon, yet still juicy enough to be a real thirst-quencher. (£10.95)

Côte d’Or Bourgogne Rouge: Bourgogne Rouge can be made from any of Burgundy’s Pinot Noir vineyards, from around Chablis, through to the south around Mâconnais and all points in between, so when a new appellation was created in 2017 to showcase a blend from the region’s finest vineyards of the Côte d’Or, that sounded like a good idea. We approached Ben Leroux who unearthed this jewel which, in the end, was not even a blend, but from declassified energetic pure and joyous Chorey-lès-Beaune. (£23.50)

Côtes du Rhône: To my palate, there are two types of Côtes du Rhône: the widely enjoyed solid, spicy and big-hearted red, and then the more lissom, expressive, garrigue and herb-scented style. The latter is certainly my personal favourite. It is harder to find, yet – when done well, as in this example made for us by Rémi Pouizin from organic and biodynamic fruit – there is a visceral energy that refreshes and satisfies in equal measure. (£11.95)

Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon: Chile’s red wines made their name on easy-drinking Merlot but, for brothers Sebastian and Marco De Martino, it is with Cabernet Sauvignon that the country’s potential for finesse exists. They work exceedingly hard on, and are exceptionally proud of, their Cabernet – and with good reason. Behind the subtle cassis notes, there is a line of graphite and crunchy freshness in this wine that will more than satisfy lovers of Bordeaux. (£9.95)

Shop our Own Selection range on bbr.com