Eco friendly wines

by Tim Atkin on Thursday, 31 July 2008

Woman and Home's wine expert Tim Atkin chooses some of the top ethical, organic, Fairtrade and eco wines for you to enjoy

2007 Los Robles Fairtrade Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon, Curico Valley (£4.99, Marks & Spencer)
This screw-capped blend of Sauvignon Blanc with 30% Semillon is a crisp, grapefruity, pleasantly herbal white with no oak to interfere with the fruit flavours.

2007 Fairhills Cabernet/Shiraz, Western Cape (£5.19, Tesco)
Blending Cabernet Sauvignon with Shiraz is a new development in the Cape, but it’s one I’d like to see more of. This youthful, smoky red is smooth, spicy and sweetly oaked.

2006 Fairtrade Maara Chardonnay, Western Cape (£5.49, Marks & Spencer)
The grapes for this impressive Fairtrade white come from the cooler slopes of the Citrusdal Mountains, which explains the crisp acidity underlying its tropical fruit flavours.

2007 Fairtrade Stellar Organics Pinotage, Western Cape (£5.13, Asda)
South Africa’s most distinctive red grape is not to everyone’s taste, but when it’s as soft, juicy and violet-scented as this example, it deserves a wide audience.

2007 Los Robles Fairtrade Carmenère, Curico Valley (£5.19, Waitrose)
One of my favourite Fairtrade wines, this lightly oaked Chilean red, made from a grape variety that is something of a local speciality, is grassy, yet full-flavoured, with notes of blackcurrant and chocolate.

3 of the best eco-packaged wines
La Baume Cabernet Sauvignon, Vin de Pays (£6.99 per litre, Waitrose)
As easy on the palate as it is on the conscience, this Cabernet has soft, grainy tannins, sweetish mulberry and cassis fruit, and a hint of spice.

Co-op Fairtrade Chilean Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot, Curico Valley (£14.99 for 3 litres)
A blend of three grape varieties from the southern half of Chile’s central valley, this deeply coloured, aromatic red is just the ticket. It’s soft and fruity, with a spicy twist.

Sainsbury’s Salento Rosé (£4.99 for two recyclable glasses, equivalent to half a bottle)
Made in southern Italy from native Negroamaro grapes, this is a medium-bodied, quaffing rosato with cherry and raspberry notes, a nip of tannin, and a soft, easy-drinking finish.

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