Pewley Down English Sparkling Rosé 2016

I’m a great fan of English wine. It’s not cheap however, and for £32.50 I have high hopes indeed. This wine was a bit of a gamble; I was unaware of this Surrey producer. This compares well with other English Sparkling Wines on price and I found it to be a delicious, celebratory wine. Tasting…

Pouilly-Fuissé – Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference 2018

Whilst not cheap this wine is relatively good value. Pouilly-Fuisse is often confused with Pouilly-Fume. This is Chardonnay from a small area of Burgundy in the ‘Macon’ region, south of Chablis. I have had so many disappointingly ‘meh’ Chablis that I avoid buying it, unless I’m in France. This producer (Rodet) is based in Mercurey…

Dog Point Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2018 – Update

This update reflects the 2018 vintage. Dog Point has a characteristic ‘New World’ taste to it – and would definitely appeal to lovers of ‘The Ned’ & Cloudy Bay (one of the winemakers used to work for Cloudy Bay). I guess that the fermentation took place at relatively low temperatures.  The winemakers employed the ‘reductive method’ (very…

Jam Shed Malbec 2019

I have visited the beautiful but edgy town of Mendoza, a few hours flight from Buenos Aires and have tasted a lot of Malbec. I have calibrated my palate to the soft, drying tannins, and the flavours of plum, blackberry, blackcurrant, cherry, violets… All that fruit could be described as ‘jammy’ or even, when combined…

DV Catena Malbec 2017

Malbec is the world’s favourite red wine grape and Catena Zapata won ‘The World’s Most Admired Wine Brand 2020’ from Drinks International. The effects of the pandemic on Argentina’s already fragile economy will be profound and long-lasting. Tesco stocks 29 malbecs and several chardonnays, pinot grigios, torrontes etc. from Argentina. This wine and most of…

Malbec 2019 Tesco Finest

Malbec is the world’s favourite red wine grape and this is down to Argentinian producers like Catena, who produce this good value red for Tesco and their own label DV Catena range which is sold in the UK. Argentina is essentially a developing world country and as such its wines ought to be fairly traded….

St Emilion Grand Cru 2017, Lidl

“If anyone orders merlot, I’m leaving. I am not drinking any f@£$ing Merlot!” The irrational hatred that Paul Giamatti’s character had for merlot in the wine-lovers’ film Sideways had a profound, lasting impact on merlot sales. Bordeaux producers don’t tend to put the grape variety on the label, so St Emilion may have avoided the…

Picpoul de Pinet 2019 – Tesco Finest – UPDATED AGAIN!

I have written before about the ubiquitous nature of supermarket Picpoul de Pinet: ‘ubiquitous’ because they pretty much all stock the identical wine from the same co-operative producer, but with a different label. In April this year I wrote this – Picpoul de Pinet 2019 – Tesco Finest – Update – A Time for Wine….

Ventoux Côtes du Rhône 2018, Sainsbury’s

The Cotes du Rhone appellation is one of the world’s largest wine-producing regions. The variety of grapes is amazing. Sainsbury’s updated ‘Taste The Difference’ range is doing a good job of teaming up with good producers and releasing own-label wines that are interesting and reasonably priced. Ventoux is about 30km from its famous neighbour Chateauneuf du…

Flint Key 2018, The Mount Vineyard, Shoreham Kent

This wine travelled about three miles from the vineyard to my house. I’m a great fan of English wines and this comes from a beautiful spot; Shoreham near Sevenoaks – in the ‘valley of light’ once favoured by artists. The Mount tries to offer a ‘vineyard experience’, with tastings and food. Like most ‘hospitality’ businesses,…

Franciacorta, Castel Faglia, Italy

Italian fizz rose from nowhere about 12 years ago when the prosecco boom began. Demand was huge for cheap fizz, and it was less harsh than Cava. The backlash began a few years ago in response to the acidic, insipid £6 stuff on sale – and it’s image as a drink to get you drunk….

Valiosa Brut NV Spain Laithwaite’s

This Spanish fizz from La Mancha came into being when the opportunist Solis brothers heard that there was a global prosecco shortage a few years ago and decided to try growing Glera grapes in the hot, inland plains south of Madrid. It didn’t work, so they employed similar methods of production (the Charmat or ‘tank’…