I hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year and that 2020 will be a good year for you.
Things on the website have changed a bit although the underlying aims are, of course, unaltered.
In line with most modern websites, each post has now been made shorter and punchier.
Also, rather than consolidate everything into a single (lengthy) “article”, most topics will now have their own post – meaning more concise (but more regular) emails and updates.
Canny Drinker Alerts
January is usually a difficult time for budgets so here are five and a half everyday wines that are tasty, straightforward but inexpensive options to suit all pockets.
The last one is a little bit dearer (hence the “five and a half”) but included because it is excellent wine – and terrific value at its promotion price.
2019 Mountain Vineyards Shiraz (£5 at Tesco):
If you are looking for something knee-deep in substance and texture, this South African red may not be the guy for you.
Nevertheless, it has delightfully attractive but light herbal cherry and bramble fruit nicely supported by good acidity and hints of spice yet only limited tannin.
2018 Mellow and Fruity Spanish Red (£4.99 at Waitrose):
Waitrose may not be the obvious place for inexpensive wine but this terrific value garnacha based red has long been a favourite of mine.
It delivers soft, juicy cherry and raspberry fruit supported by good acidity and light tannin but with a liquorice based savoury undercurrent and hints of allspice.
2013 Baturrica Tarragona Gran Reserva (£4.99 at Lidl):
Also Spanish (but from Catalonia this time), this keenly priced, textured merlot/cabernet blend has a nice bit of aging.
That maturation adds complexity to the wine’s cherry and bramble fruit, good acidity, suggestions of chocolate, pepper and aniseed but still quite firm tannin.
2018 Morrisons Soave (£4.35 at Morrisons):
Today’s post (and this part of our website) is all about low cost everyday wine and this uncomplicated white from Northern Italy fits the bill perfectly.
Unusually at this price point, there is a neat combination of flavours including mellow apple and lemon fruit, vaguely nutty texture but some fresh grapefruit acidity to keep things lively.
2018 Cimarosa Pedro Jimenez (£4.99 at Lidl):
Not to be confused with the similarly named (but only distantly related – if at all) sherry grape, this Pedro Jimenez (sometimes spelled with a G rather than a J) is from northern Chile.
Rather than the opulence of the sweet wine PX can produce in Spain, this guy has green apple and pear fruit, gentle citrus acidity, pithy texture and a surprisingly long finish that embodies unusual saline depth.
2018 Les Dauphins Cȏtes du Rhȏne Blanc (£6.50 – instead of £8 until 20 January – at Tesco):
If there are a few pennies left, head for this fragrant yet nutty blend of grenache blanc (70%) and viognier.
It has textured quince, peach and ripe melon fruit supported by evolving zesty acidity and a savoury herb finish.
Next week: Switching to a more detailed look at a subject, next Wednesday’s post will suggest what to drink for Burns Night (25 January) and why.
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