Wines We Love – a Decanter Saturday star!

The Laughing Magpie 2010, d’Arenburg, McLaren Vale, Australia.

Working in hospitality generally comes with the pleasure of being on shift for at least some of the weekend and, true to form, I do work most Saturdays. For some it’s a chore but luckily enough for me it has its perks in the form of Decanter Saturday. Yep, every Saturday I have to go through the arduous task of scouring the shelves to pick a wine, get all creative and stuff taking photos of it for social media and then (the really tough bit!) taste it! It’s harder than you think…

There was one particular #DecanterSaturday recently that reallylaughing-magpie stood out for me. It was on one of my favourite days of the year, Bonfire Night, and I was looking to find something that would represent everything I love about the celebration; the building excitement as you get wrapped up in your warmest clothes, groups of friends full of chatter and anticipation, warming flames dancing in the cold breeze, sounds of sizzling sausages and the waft of sweet toffee apples before the night sky erupts in a rainbow canopy of sparkles and light, leaving you in awe and with a happy feeling inside.

D’Arenberg’s ‘The Laughing Magpie’ is a blend of Shiraz and Viognier. I was intrigued to see what effect the Viognier had on the peppery, spicy qualities of Shiraz and the name of the wine instantly made me happy so I figured it had to be worth a try. Anyway, long story short, I LOVED it! With juicy brambly black fruit and savoury notes it’s a warming winter red for sure. It’s not overly big and hearty though, it’s actually really approachable with a nice freshness to it, robust but with an underlying minerality. The peppery spice is apparent but so nicely integrated amongst the fruit. It’s smooth, intense and has a pretty impressive length with silky tannins to boot. The Viognier seems to lift the wine in terms of perfume and colour, with a vibrant deep purple hue and a hint of ripe peach amongst the dark fruits, it’s a grape match made in heaven.

The wine does benefit from a little air but Kate and I couldn’t fill the decanter quick enough that Saturday and it was still going down a treat! Hearty enough to pair with a slow cooked beef casserole but also the perfect weight to match with lamb too – try it with apricot stuffing. Divine!

£19.50 or just £17.55 to wine club members.  BUY NOW