The Wine Guy, Eddie McDougall: Springtime wines for under $250

Our resident wine expert selects some excellent seasonal wines that don’t cost the Earth

Illustration: Cat O’Neil

There’s as much seasonality in wine drinking as there is in the way we approach our wardrobe throughout the year. Now that winter is nearing an end, it’s time to start putting your bold reds back into the wine fridge and to start keeping an eye out for some fresh and vibrant springtime drops. To help get you started, I’ve selected a collection of affordable and awesome wines that you must try, which are perfect for the incoming season.

Foss Marai, Native Prosecco Extra Dry NV DOCG, Strada di Guia 109 Valdobbiadene, Italy
A winemaker who has been specialising in prosecco since the early 20th century. Foss Marai grapes are grown on a steep hill, giving the vines plenty of sunshine, which means lots of flavour. This soft, bubbly wine is floral and wonderfully seductive. Its slightly sweeter profile should turn any spritzer into a winner. $131. Available at The Flying Winemaker.

Paddy Borthwick, Sauvignon Blanc, 2017, Wairarapa, New Zealand

A quirky wine producer based out of New Zealand’s North Island that’s been steadily picking up great reviews and ratings from international critics. This sauvignon blanc is not the conventional type you taste out of South Island but a wine with much greater complexity and generosity on the mouthfeel with hints of gooseberries, guava and pomello. Pair this with a large Italian anti-pasti plate. $150. Available at Victoria Wines.

Bonny Doon, Le Cigare Blanc (Grenache Blanc & Roussanne), Arroyo Seco, 2011, California, USA
One of the most innovative producers in all America, Bonny Doon has been bending all the rules in the winemaking text books while still adhering to the spiritual aspects of biodynamic viticulture. The blend is pale gold in the glass while its flavours are stacked with melons, peaches and ruby grapefruit notes. A wine with textural sensations that work wonders with Cantonese dishes. $248. Available at Continental Wines.

Pio Cesare, Dolcetto d’Alba DOC, 2015, Alba, Italy
This producer needs little introduction for wine geeks, but anyone new to Pio Cesare ought to know they have 135 years of winemaking experience. From the home of white truffles, Alba, this icon’s dolcetto is fragrant, juicy, full of redcurrant flavours and elegant. I suggest serving it slightly chilled with your next barbecue. $244. Available at Jebsen Fine Wines.

Eddie McDougall

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