Crozes Hermitage – Club des Sommeliers

The Cotes du Rhone appellation is one of the world’s largest wine-producing regions. The variety of grapes is amazing. Crozes-Hermitage is the largest appellation in the northern Rhône . I had a strategy of buying wines from the less highly regarded appellations neighbouring  the very expensive ones which I can rarely afford to drink –…

Villa Maria Chardonnay

New Zealand is associated (in my mind at least) chiefly with Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. This chardonnay is from the warmer North Island. At £9 a bottle I’m beginning to have expectations of a wine – and one of my aims is to factor in an element of ‘value for money’ to a wine’s…

The Wild Peacock, Chardonnay

An unoaked Chardonnay from the warmth of South Africa; this wine would be better if it carried some kind of endorsement of Fairtrade – for which I’m afraid I must deduct points. In the news this week, ‘land grabs’ are beginning to occur in South Africa – I hope that the companies which engage &…

Albariño, Vinas de Rey, Tesco Finest

Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range is doing a good job of teaming up with good producers and releasing own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced. As I’m off to Spain shortly I thought I’d get in the mood by trying another of Tesco’s (so far) interesting, well chosen ‘Finest’ range of wines. In recent years Albariño attracted…

Most Wanted Chardonnay

Clem Yates is a Master of Wine (MW) – one of only about 300 or so, and is also a graduate chemist – so she is well qualified to be a winemaker! She used to work for Sainsbury’s wine before leaving to branch out. She is Australian too, so this wine is in good hands!…

Pinot Pinot, Pinot Grigio

I’ve written elsewhere about the insipid nature of so many Pinot Grigios, however this is good wine and is currently at a fair price point. I’m regularly finding that Australian and Argentinian pinot grigios are more interesting than Italian wines; perhaps Italian winemakers have become complacent because their wine sells so well… Tasting notes: This…

Cuchillo Malbec

We visited Mendoza in Autumn 2016 and spent 5 days tasting a range of wine. Located in the eastern foothills of the Andes, in the shadow of Mount Aconcagua, vineyards are planted at some of the highest altitudes in the world – with the average site located 600-1,100 meters above sea level. The principal wine-producing…

Languedoc, Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference

  I have been looking at how Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range (which teams up with good producers and releases own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced) compares with Sainsbury’s ‘Premium’, Taste the Difference range. As a punter, it pays to seek out the maker’s name. Few winemakers are more consistent than Paul Mas. My…

Cremant de Loire – Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference

Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range is doing a good job of teaming up with good producers and releasing own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced – but how does Sainsbury’s ‘Premium’, Taste the Difference range compare? For this fizz they have teamed up with my favourite Loire Valley cremant producer, Bouvet Ladubay. They are one…

Saint Mont – Tesco Finest

More from Tesco’s ‘Finest’ range of interesting and reasonably priced wine. My three journeys through and around France so far this year have taken me far and wide and reminded me of the vast difference in hospitality that this country offers. From jovial bonhomie to total hostility: I’ve had it all. Often in the same…

Chenin Blanc – Tesco Finest

Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range is doing a good job of teaming up with good producers and releasing own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced – and this hits the spot again… Chenin Blanc is good everyday wine, and should be relatively inexpensive. If it is from South Africa it should also be fairly traded…

Cotes de Gascogne – Tesco Finest

Tesco’s updated ‘Finest’ range is doing a good job of teaming up with good producers and releasing own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced.  good wine. Tasting notes: From the ‘Cotes de Gascogne’ region of South West France. Crisp, fresh flavours of green apple & citrus. Dry and faintly aromatic. Good value for money….