|Tom Cannavan's wine-pages.com|
fat, spicy, verdant, principally verdejo-based Spanish white2006 Palacio del Marques Tempranillo-Syrah, M&S £2.99 until Oct 1
lifted by a splash of syrah to deliver ripe, plummy, exotic fruit2004 Wild Rock Gravel Pit Red, NZ, Waitrose £7.49 until Sep 30
smoky scent, sweet, grainy red fruits and ripe velvety finish2005 Errazuriz Estate Sangiovese, Waitrose, £5.24 until Sep 30
glorious, fine, fat, violet-scented briary red2005 Bourgogne Cuvée Oligocène, Javillier, Lay & Wheeler £14.49
oozes elegant, scented, steely, hazelnut, lemon and glacé fruit spice2006 Langhe Arneis, Bricco Cappellina, Voerzio, Lay & Wheeler, £12
nutty, stone fruit-layered complexity from the arneis grape
Fresh, grapefruity, softly nutty and creamy. Drink within a year2005 Bourgogne Chardonnay, Marc Colin, £9.89 A&B Vintners
Honeyed, spicy, mineral. Delicious now and for at least two years2005 Sasso, Aglianico del Vulture, £6.99 Selected Waitrose
Distinctive Italian red: earthy cherry and dark chocolate flavours
vivid, spicy blackberry-fruit flavours; long-lasting impression2007 Cono Sur Riesling Reserve, Chile. £5.24, Waitrose, to 30 Sep
scented, crisp dry riesling.2005 Loma Larga Syrah, Chile. £12.10, Justerini & Brooks
aromatic, peppery red, with intense black fruits and supple tannins
Spicy, meaty2004 St Joseph, Cuvée Prestige, Cave St Désirat (£9.99, Waitrose)
elegant, peppery2006 Excelsior Paddock Shiraz, Robertson (£5.99, Tesco)
richer style; rich, chocolatey2002 Tatachilla Foundation Shiraz, (2 @£9.99 Majestic)
powerful, densely fruity
Argentina (50-1) Its rugby team is getting better and better, as are its wines. Grab some peachy, citrussy Torrontés, Argentina's "signature" grape, or some beefy Malbecs or Syrahs and watch the Pumas confound the critics.
Australia (12-1) Trays of Castlemaine, Fosters, Coopers and Tooheys are flying off the shelves, but since the Wallabies could go all the way you will need to be well stocked with wine, too. For the quarter-finals put the Yellow Tail Bubbles on ice; for the semis Green Point Brut and, for the final, Clover Hill Brut.
Canada (5,000-1) Forget dreary Molson and Labatt lager and grab some Canadian wine. A soft, mellow red or aromatic white from British Columbia should help ease the pain of defeat. Save the nectar that is Inniskillin's sparkling Icewine for when Canada reach the final. Ha!
England (25-1) In the event of victory a fine sparkler such as Nyetimber, Chapel Down, RidgeView or Balfour Brut Rosé will be needed. In the event of defeat lots of London dry gin or copious quantities of fine English bitter.
Fiji (1,000-1) Mouth-numbing Yaqona, aka Kava (see Samoa and Tonga). Etiquette demands that on drinking it one should clap hands once and down it in one, after which everyone else claps three times and laughs uproariously at your folly.
France (10-1) So much to choose from (see venue guide, below) but in the event of the hosts doing well, it has to be the finest Champagne.
makes its presence felt; reminds you that champagne is a wineSaam Chenin Blanc 2006, South Africa, £5.95, Bibendum
warm ripeness of cooked pears; crisp, clean finishBorgo Salcetino Chianti Classico 2005, Italy, £7.99, Waitrose
robust, blood-and-guts warmth. Drinking, more than thinking wineLa Segreta Bianco 2006, Italy, £8.85, Carluccio's
Very aromatic; lively citrus with some florality and a richer undertow