By Lorcan O'Brien | Wine Content Specialist
The highly anticipated O'Briens Fine Wine Sale starts today! Featuring over 30 fine and iconic wines, there are incredible offers on some of the world's classic wine styles, such as Burgundy, Barolo, Rioja and Châteauneuf-du-Pape. And this year, to ensure you find that perfect bottle, we have taken 20% off our entire Bordeaux selection!
To help you with your choices this year, our Wine Team take a look at 5 of their top picks. But hurry, stocks are strictly limited, so to avoid disappointment pop into your local O'Briens store or shop online before this vintage is gone.
Brunello di Montalcino, Italy
RRP: €47.00, NOW: €37.00, Save €10
The Italian Job
Brunello di Montalcino is a true aristocrat of Italian wine, producing some of the finest examples of Sangiovese in the world. Campogiovanni’s vineyards are sited on the iconic Montalcino hill, and is made in a very classic style. The wine is aged for three years in Slavonian oak casks and a further twelve months in bottle before release.
Expect complex layers of vibrant flavour: wild hedgerow fruit, plum, cedar wood, tobacco leaf and tanned leather, the palate is generous with rich fruit and fine-grained tannins developing into a long, persistent and fruit-filled finish.
Brunello can age incredibly well, so if well-cellared this will continue to develop for a further decade or more. San Felice Campogiovanni would make a wonderfully thoughtful gift for the Italian wine lover in you life this Christmas.
THE GRAPE PRESS:
"Very dark ruby with some maturity to the rim. Smoky blackberry and liquorice nose with notes of bark and tobacco. Very rich, full and densely textured, though with some freshness of fruit still. Drinking Window 2022 - 2032"
- 96/100 Points, Decanter Wine Magazine
Châteauneuf du Pape, Rhône Valley, France
RRP: €43.95, NOW: €29.95, Save €14
Châteauneuf-du-Pape is one of the most popular fine wine styles of the world. With their elegantly embossed bottles and exotic name, it is the perfect centre piece for the Christmas dinner table. The name comes from a division in the Catholic church in the 14th century that saw the seat of the papacy located in nearby Avignon.
This example comes from the Château Lynch-Bages owned 14th-century Domaine des Sénéchaux, and is among Châteauneuf-du-Pape's oldest wineries. It is layered with sweet ripe fruit, tremendous structure, fine oak and good acidity. Most importantly, it is perfectly balanced.
THE GRAPE PRESS:
"Owned by the Cazes family of Château Lynch-Bages which has spent serious money improving the wines and restoring the old estate. The blanc version is one of my favourites and the red is exactly what you want from Châteauneuf- silky and ripe with layers of sweet, spicy red and black fruits that linger and linger."
- Leslie Williams, The Irish Examiner
RRP: €34.95, NOW: €24.95, Save €10
Amarone is another classic wine style of the world. It is made using grapes that have been semi-dried in temperature controlled drying cellars (known as fruttaio). As the grapes lose water weight their skins, the sugars and flavours left behind are concentrated, resulting in a richly flavoured and concentrated wine.
3 Cru Amarone is made by Count Giuseppe Rizzardi at his historic family Guerrieri-Rizzardi estate in Italy's Veneto. The grapes come from 3 of their top vineyards. It offers a rich, silky palate and full bodied structure. Expect bold flavours of plum and blackberry fruits, and alluring raisin and fig notes, all framed by the elegance and freshness typical to all Rizzardi wines.
THE GRAPE PRESS:
"Rizzardi makes excellent Amarones, and you could pay well in excess of this elsewhere and get little more than on offer here.
-Martin Moran, The Sunday Times
Wine cellar Guerrieri-Rizzardi estate
Classic Christmas Cracker
RRP: €35.95, NOW: €25.95, Save €10
Domaine Chanson is a historic Burgudian estate, dating back to 1750. In 1999, it was bought by Champagne Bollinger, who invested heavily in the vineyards and cellar to ensure the very best quality fruit is harvested from their 43 hectares of vines.
This elegant Premier Cru Chablis is made from Chardonnay grown on the top quality Montmains Premier Cru vineyard. It has all the hallmarks expected of Chablis at this level with restrained fruit, a mineral note and a lingering and intense finish.
The steely minerality and good acidity of Chablis makes it a classic match for a Christmas roast turkey with all the trimmings.
Pauillac Bordeaux, France
RRP: €42.00, NOW: €31.95, Save €10.05
This classic Pauillac is made by the Cazes family, who also own Château Lynch-Bages, so exquisite quality is assured. The same attention to winemaking detail is maintained, and with true Pauillac characteristics, this is an affordable way to experience some of the nuances and quality of this famous commune. Led by Cabernet Sauvignon this is a deep and brooding wine with ripe dark blackcurrant fruit and spice flavours before a fine and lingering finish.
A richly flavoured and textured Pauillac is a great choice for quality Irish beef. From a classic roast, to a well-aged Sirloin steak, this is the perfect Bordeaux to have in the wine rack over the Festive period.
Lorcan is O’Briens Wine Content Specialist, charged with spreading the wine word and keeping our customers and staff up to date with news of our wines and winemakers through his dedicated and passionate writing. Previously an O’Briens store Manager, Lorcan has written about wine in Ireland and Spain and is currently studying for the WSET Diploma. In his spare time Lorcan hosts wine tastings, blogs about wine and judges in wine competitions.
*Pricing correct at time of publishing. For the most up to date prices see our stores or website.