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….

Gaillac – Tesco Finest

I’ve been working my way through the Tesco ‘finest’ range for the last few months and am reaching the conclusion that they are generally very good; a well thought out, appealing range of wines from decent producers at reasonable prices. Tasting notes: Gaillac is from the South West of France. Crisp, fresh flavours of citrus,…

Marks & Spencer Pinot Grigio delle Venezie

I’ve written elsewhere about the insipid nature of so many Pinot Grigios, however this is good wine and is currently at an unbeatable price point. Tasting notes: This Pinot Grigio is from the Venezie region of  North East Italy. Crisp, fresh flavours of citrus. Dry. A little complexity; better than most supermarket offerings, which I…

Brancott Estate Sauvignon Blanc

I thought that this was good Sauvignon Blanc. Very good value at £6.75 at the moment and in my opinion gives The Ned a run for it’s money in this category. This had none of that ‘pissy’ aroma that some prize in Sauvignon Blancs, but which I (understandably, I think) find revolting. Tasting notes: Initially…

Paul Mas Sparkling Picpoul Chardonnay

When he started out in the late 1990s, Mas set out to make wines to export: “Selling wines to the French is like trying to sell hamburgers to the Americans.”  Consequently, he exports, to 58 countries, 97 per cent of the 20 million bottles he produces annually. An alternative to Prosecco, this wine appeals because of…

Marks & Spencer Prosecco

Prosecco sales in the UK went up by 75% in 2014 alone; this year sales overtook champagne and 1 in 3 bottles of sparkling wine sold today will be Prosecco. But will this wine strip your teeth of enamel…? Good prosecco costs a little more, and this is good sparkling wine and good value at…

Codorniu Cava

Codorníu is the world’s oldest and second-largest producer of bottle-fermented sparkling wine, known as cava, made by the traditional champagne method and it was founded in Barcelona, Spain in 1551. I visit the area every year and have been going for there for 20 years (I’m off there again next month). We visited Sant Sadurní…

Villa Bruna Piemonte Cortese

  I’ve had a break from writing for 6 weeks, however I have not been idle. I visited the Aosta Valley for a week and went to France, twice. I drove thousands of miles, in my new car and have many stories to tell! I experienced fantastic food & hospitality in France and Italy and…

Ackerman Cremant de Loire

I visited the Loire Valley and stayed at  La Demeure de la Vignole just outside Saumur (https://www.demeure-vignole.com/). It’s a complex of ‘Troglodite’ caves, once home to a poor community of farmers, now home to a luxury hotel. The two sparkling wines I liked most were Bouvet-Ladubay in central Saumur and this one, towards Turquant where…

M&S Wave Break Pinot Grigio

  An unusual proposition and one I’ve never come across before; American Pinot Grigio. But containing French Colombard. And bottled in Germany. I thought it was good – if rather on the pricey side for Pinot Grigio. Tasting notes: Light, fruity, dry white. Flavours of fresh pear and lime. Wine Colour – White Price –…