The Edit, February 2023 edition.

The Edit, February 2023 edition.

 The Edit is our monthly selection of what's exciting and drinking well, chosen by Robin, founder of Iron & Rose and still a wine obsessive. The three bottles selected change each month to reflect the season, the food we're enjoying, and often to introduce new arrivals. 

For February Robin has chosen three wines that will be delicious to drink as we look forward to spring but can still expect some cold evenings when a good bottle of red will be required!

This box set contains three bottles, one of each of the following wines, made by inspirational producers, the kind of wines which inspired Robin to start Iron & Rose back in 2016. Buy it online in our webshop or in our shop in Shrewsbury Market Hall. You ca also subscribe to the Edit and our other monthly changing cases to ensure a regular supply of naturally delicious wine!

Le Cartel, Alicante-Henri-Bouschet, Languedoc, France -  

Fredi Torres makes some of the Spanish wines we get really excited about - Lectores Vini Priorat Classic for one - and is busy with many projects there so hadn't really meant to get involved in something else but... when his friend Jean-Remi Mourad persuaded him to have a look at some old vineyards over the border in France he saw the extraordinary potential and couldn't help but get involved. 

This red is made from very old Alicante Bouschet vines growing on the hillsides of the Massif de la Clape, just north of the town of Gruissan, close to the Mediterranean coast. A very arid climate and poor, thin, stony, limestone soils give the wines a racy, focused style. And Fredi's careful, sensitive winemaking coaxes amazing complexity and almost delicacy from a grape variety that can produce wines that are more than a touch overpowering!

Great to drink with some typically Mediterranean style food - herb aromatic stews, grilled vegetables or meat, or some great charcuterie.

Producer          - Le Cartel (Fredi Torres and Jean-Remi Mourad)
Country            - France
Region              - Gruissan, Languedoc
Variety / Blend - Alicante Bouschet
Wine Style       - Red Wine
Farming            - Organic

Valdibella, Ninfa, Sicily, Italy -

Valdibella is a cooperative mixed farm which, as well as being organic and promoting environmental biodiversity, through the 'Jonathan' project reaches out to help disadvantaged members of the community. They now produce wine, wheat and pasta, almonds and oil, vegetables and legumes, grown on hillsides around Camporeale, 35km southwest of Palermo. 

Ninfa is a delicious, accessible orange, made from Catarratto Lucido (a mutation of Catarratto with slightly thinner, almost transparent skins) with 10 days skin contact during fermentation. An amazing hazy burnt orange colour it has aromas of mandarin, ginger and citrus. On the palate it has the classic orange edge but lovely roundness which makes it great for those new to skin contact wines or who are not their biggest fans! 

‘Ninfa’ or ‘Nymph’ comes from ancient Greek folklore. The Nymphs presided over various natural phenomena and were responsible for the care of the plants and animals of their domain. In this instance, it is meant to represent this sort of ‘harmony’ in the wine itself and the vineyard where these grapes were grown. 

Delicious to drink with, for example, a casserole of leeks, root veg, chicken and pearl barley. (Check out the Nigella Lawson recipe in January 2022’s Observer Food Monthly.)

Producer - Valdibella
Country - Italy
Region -   Sicily
Appellation  - Camporeale
Variety / Blend -  Catarratto
Wine Style - Orange Wine
Farming   - Organic    


L'Equinox Wines, To Maike and the Rest, Swartland, South Africa -

The name ‘To Maike and the Rest’ was inspired by the loss of a friend named Maike, though generally it is a tribute to those who are no longer with us, or the losses of friendships one goes through in life. 

L’Equinox is a young project created by MC Stander who, after a decade working for wineries across South Africa, decided to start his own project sourcing grapes from organic and biodynamic growers in Swartland, a region which is a lot less pretty than Stellenbosch or Franschoek but IMHO making many of South Africa’s most beautiful wines. He has always been drawn to a fresher style of winemaking, favouring lighter extractions, light skin contact on the whites, and a less-is-more approach and the mediterranean climate helps produce grapes that are perfect for this approach.

This is an old vine Chenin with a brief amount of skin contact. This explodes out of the glass with plenty of fruit, flint, spice, and layers of goodness. A white that is at once edgy yet serious. It has a Loire Chenin vibe, textural, honeyed and glycerol / slippery. Brilliant with some fresh water fish or a young cow or goat cheese. 

Country - South Africa
Region - Swartland
Variety / Blend - Chenin 
Wine Style - White Wine
Farming - Biodynamic