It's difficult to judge a vin primeur by looking at the wine through its bottle, so look at the label and cap-seal instead. Look for the words vigneron indépendant (independent winemaker). Independent winemakers make vins primeurs to attract your attention, build customer loyalty, and get some quick cash flowing from the vintage. Of course, cooperatives do the same, but not always with the same passion. You'll be paying € 4-something, not € 3-something, for a Primeur from an independent, but go the extra Euro. Look for a mention of grape variety, too. If you like Merlot, buy a Merlot Primeur. When it's in your glass the colour should be clear and sustained all the way to the rim, not watery. It should have a simple, fruity appeal on the nose. When it's in your mouth, feel for flavour, body, balance, and length. But remember, these are easy-drinking, uncomplicated wines, they shouldn't have you reaching for your thesaurus, or doing a Jilly Goolden!
First published in P-O Life. Download the issue: vroom vroom !