Of all the columns I’ve written this year, this one should have been the easiest to write: open my tasting notes file, sort by year 2021, sort by score, select the top ten highest scoring wines, copy and paste. Go to the pub.
But it’s not that simple. Some wines are technically perfect and undeniably excellent, wines I respect greatly that deserve their high scores – but on a personal level, they leave me a little cold.
Scroll down to see tasting notes and scores for Matt Walls’ top 10 Rhône wines of 2021
There are others, however, that – despite their flaws, eccentricities or peculiarities – have made an indelible mark, a vivid memory that raises a smile.
Clearly these are the wines that mattered most to me this year, so that’s why they feature on this list.
Far from being a quick piece to rattle off at the end of the year, I luxuriated in recalling each wine as I looked over my notes.
It’s a task, like tidying old photographs, that always takes much longer than it strictly needs to.