Jonathan Ray Jonathan Ray

Wine Club 21 August

I keep pinching myself. After the misery of the last 18 months, things really do seem to be on the up. Everyone I know is double-jabbed, they’re all desperate to carouse and I’ve been out on the toot five nights (and three lunches) on the bounce. Spurs beat mighty Man City in their season opener (fnarr, fnarr), Joe Root got 180 at Lord’s (I was there), no. 2 son nailed his A-levels, I got a parking ticket overturned and — saving the best for last — Tanners of Shrewsbury are back in the warm embrace of the Spectator Wine Club. Landlord, drinks all round!

Family-owned and run since 1842, Tanners are one of the UK’s leading independent merchants and it has been too long since we joined forces. I’m thrilled they’re back. And with generations-long relationships with growers and producers, nothing shows what Tanners are about better than their formidable house range, highlights of which we offer here. It was certainly a brow-furrowing task narrowing the selection down.

The 2020 Tanners Gascony Dry White (1), made by the Béraut family of Domaine de Pellehaut (of Armagnac fame), is a real snip. Complex it ain’t, but charming it is, full of fresh lively, lemony, dry to off-dry exotic fruit. £8.50 down from £8.80.

It was certainly a brow-furrowing task narrowing the selection down

The 2020 Tanners Sauvignon Blanc (2) is made expressly for Tanners by Francois Lurton, no less, in the Languedoc. Crisp, clean and dry with hints of cut grass and gooseberries, it makes a wonderfully uncomplicated yet satisfying aperitif. £9.00 down from £9.50.

The 2020 Tanners White Burgundy (3) comes from the much-lauded, century-old Cave de Viré co-operative near Mâcon. You might know them for their stunning sparkling Crémant de Bourgogne and this is similarly tasty and well-crafted.

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