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Magazine / Seven wines you'll love this lockdown.

Seven wines you’ll love this lockdown.


For those of you who have been doing Dry January, the time has come to raise a glass again.

We asked wine aficionado and the man in charge of Balans’ wine lists, Kieran Crosby, our Head of Operations & Finance for his tips on brilliant bottles to break Dry January with this February. Here are Kieran’s recommendations below and if you click the link you’ll be able to find where to buy them.

Blanco Sobre Lías Care (available here)

This one is a lesser known blend from Carinena in Spain.

If you love a crisp white then you’ll enjoy this one. It’s a blend of Chardonnay, Garnacha Blanc and Macabeo and will remind you of green fruits but also a hint of pineapple, owing to the climate.

If you’re having some pork belly or roast salmon, you can’t go far wrong drinking this with it.

Psssst, insider knowledge, this could be our new house white…

The FMC, Chenin Blanc Ken Forrester Wines (available here)

Chenin Blanc simply doesn’t get much better than this. The winemaker, Ken Forrester, is known as the ‘King of Chenin’ and this wine shows why.

From the Western Cape in South Africa, the winemaker is widely accepted as putting South African Chenin on the map.

I could describe it as liquid gold, you get flavours of apricot and peach, but there’s a depth of luscious honey

Personally I would drink with anything, but this would be a good match to a shellfish curry.

It’s not the cheapest wine, but if you’ve gone a month without drinking, trust me, this will be worth it!!

Allegedly FMC stands for F*****g Marvellous Chenin, I’m sure you’ll agree!

Albariño DO Rías Baixas Mar de Frades (available here)

This one is an easy drinking, dry white, made to go with shellfish, from Galicia in Spain.

If you love Albarino then this is one is bursting with citrus fruit and if you’ve saved money by not drinking during dry Jan then this one is a treat to maybe have on Valentines Day with someone.



Rosé Sicilia DOC Planeta (available here)

When most people think of rose, certain things spring to mind, Provence, Pinot Grigio Blush or god forbid White Zinfandel!

This is a bit different and comes from a winery in the shadows of Mount Etna, Sicily and the predominant grapes are Syrah and Nero d’Avola

It gives flavours of strawberry and pomegranate along with some hints of citrus and slips down very easily

As the weather eventually gets better, you cant go wrong drinking this as the sun goes down



Tinto Sobre Lías Care (available here)

This one is a lesser known blend from Carinena in Spain.

If you like a hearty red, you’ll enjoy this. It’s a blend of Syrah and Garnacha so you will taste plums and blackcurrant with a hint of cherry in there too

If you’re having some pasta with a tomato based sauce, this’ll really go well with it

Psssst, insider knowledge, this could be our new house red…..



Rioja Crianza Ramon Bilbao (available here)

Who doesn’t love Rioja? This red wine made from the Tempranillo grape in the Rioja region of North Eastern Spain.

Ramon Bilbao has been making wine since 1924 in a small town called Haro. Crianza means it’s been aged for one year in oak barrels and one year in the bottle.

This gives it the unmistakable taste of blackcurrant and blackberry, with hints of oak and vanilla.

If you’re having steak, this will be an ideal match.



Frankland River Syrah Swinney Vineyards (available here)

Western Australia is really on the map now as a high quality wine region. Frankland River isn’t as well known as maybe Margaret River but the region is starting to produce some fantastic wines.

This is a big, bold red that’s pure Syrah. It hits you with blackberry and blueberry but there’s also a layer of earthiness and spice

The tannins in this means it’ll complement a piece of venison or lamb perfectly

If you’ve gone a month without drinking red, you won’t be disappointed if this is your first one in February

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