Promotions sometimes involve prices that set out to be eye catching – yet wines that are anything but.
Not so with Waitrose; the promotion that started yesterday has, for sure, sound basic wines but there are also some unexpected and unorthodox examples that I think will tick a lot of boxes for everyone from the mildly adventurous upwards.
Although these promotions end on 12 May, the judgements on the wines themselves should hold good for at least three months from the time of the post.
Click on any of the bottles shown for an enlarged image to help you pinpoint the wine on a crowded shelf.
First, reliability – not shock
South Africa's Zalze operation often produces reliable, well priced wine like this Southern Hemisphere take on a Rhone blend.
2013 Zalze Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier (£5.99 – instead of £8.29) combines aromatic black cherry and blackberry fruit with raspberry acidity, a spicy savoury edge and pleasingly soft tannins.
Established producer tries something new
Across the Indian Ocean, Yalumba has produces its first organic wine using, predictably for a Barossa outfit, shiraz.
The result – 2013 Yalumba Organic Shiraz (£7.49 – down from £9.99) – is a dark, intense red with floral and fresh cassis flavours, vanilla and cinnamon touches and nicely textured substance.
No – this is not the Surprise
Given the dependability of the Jadot stable, it will not astonished anyone to know that 2013 Louis Jadot Macon Village Chapelle aux Loups (£8.99 instead of £11.99) is a great example of polished yet well priced white Burgundy.
Enjoy in particular its fresh lemon and grapefruit acidity and the smooth pear and peach undertones that give it texture and complexity.
Well I never expected that …..
Since English still wine quality can be patchy, I approached 2012 Wickham Estate Bottled Fumé (£7.83 instead of £9.79) with caution but, boy, was I wrong!
It uses the Bacchus and Reichensteiner grapes (not sauvignon as in American Fumé Blanc) to produce a soft, gentle white with red apple fruit and smooth floral but spicy influences – all enlivened by apple peel acidity. Oak ageing to give balance completes the pictures of a delightful wine.
Or possibly even this…..
Distinctive and pinot grigio are words that seldom appear in the same sentence but 2013 St Michael-Eppan Pinot Grigio Alto Adige (£8.99 instead of £11.99) is impressively sophisticated fare.
It has a faint prickle and a mineral edge to embellish the herbal, greengage fruit and sharp orange-centred acidity; nearer to white Rhone than typical PG.
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