Last week I tipped you off about two well-made wines in Tesco's current promotion at under a fiver. But there are other terrific wines (although perhaps a tad dearer) to be snapped up before this round of discounts ends on 15 September.
To keep everything together when you go shopping I have merged this post with the original but retained the usual facility for an enlarged ‘bottle finder' image as a shoppers helper.
Merlot at its softest.
Merlot is one of the world’s workhorse grapes – lots of it is grown and, unsurprisingly, its quality and price varies enormously but here, without spending a fortune, is an excellent example of exactly what the variety does well.
Languedoc's 2014 Louis De Camponac Merlot (£4.99 instead of £9.99) delivers warm but soft plum and mulberry fruit, firm acidity, modest tannin and a spicy roundedness to hold it all together.
The Loire does sauvignon well too!
Although the UK loves Marlborough sauvignon, remember that there are some excellent (and delicate) examples of the variety in the twin giants Pouilly and Sancerre at the eastern end of the Loire.
The bright and crisp 2013 Finest* Pouilly Fume (£8.99 instead of £11.99) has clean and fresh greengage and lime acidity and, best of all, incorporates an enticing savoury edge that approaches the minerality so often claimed – but seldom fully delivered.
Keenly priced but well made Chablis
When lightly oaked – or unoaked – chardonnay became the wine of the moment a year or two back, people seemed to forget that Chablis has been giving us exactly that style for ages.
Enjoy then the well made and great value 2012 Heritiers De La Famille Chablis (£8.99 instead of £12.99) with an appealing suggestion of orange in its sophisticated depth to contrast nicely with its classic, fresh, citrus centred acidity.
Here again are these bargain buys.
Textured but zippy
South West France often blends ugni blanc grapes with colombard but here it has turbo charged the acidity by using sauvignon blanc instead.
Consequently, the light and fresh 2014 Chemins de Gascogne Colombard Sauvignon Blanc (£4.99 instead of £9.99) delivers zippy grapefruit and lemon acidity to counterbalance the region’s typical orange-centred, orchard fruit depth.
A smooth red with lively fruit
Even though this blend of characteristic Rioja grapes is from Carinena, rather than Rioja itself, it has –as a gran reserva – experienced a good deal of aging.
That process has added smoothness, spice and chocolate touches to 2008 Marques De Carano Gran. Reserva (£4.99 instead of £9.99) without dimming its full, cherry and blackcurrant flavours or its emphatic tannic twist.
Next Wednesday sees the start of a new Tesco promotion and my recommendations from that list will be waiting for you here on “launch day” itself. Before that, this Saturday's post will feature unusual wines you can buy with confidence at M&S. Don't miss either of those compelling reviews.
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