Two months have zipped by and so it is time, once more, for another Lidl Wine Tour promotion.
The customary 30 or so wines appear in the retailer’s displays on the usual “when it’s gone it’s gone” basis.
Mainly European, its offerings extend to a £13 Rhone red that will excite lovers of mineral and liquorice based savouriness.
At the other end of the spectrum, prices start at £5.99 but – reflecting rising prices everywhere – only 4 wines in this Tour are under £6.
So, take a look at my selections and see what takes your fancy.
Once again, pictures and hyperlinks are included where possible to make it easier to track down the wine in question.
Let’s start in Gascogne
2021 Confidence de Gascogne (£5.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 11.5% abv):
South West France triumphs once again with a white that combines value and zing in a way that underlines how that region excels with the humble colombard grape.
It is partnered here with sauvignon blanc to create a wine that, to me, significantly outperforms the 84 points the Lidl website awards it.
With floral fragrance and sherbet lemon components, the result delivers vivid greengage, peach and green apple flavours enlivened by sharp grapefruit acidity and pithy depth.
Speaking of verve and green apples
2021 Riesling Rheingau Trocken (£6.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 11.5%)
Germany’s Rheingau is not only riesling’s original home but was also one major source of the “medium sweet” German wines that poured into the UK 50 or so years ago.
Nowadays, though, over three quarters of the wine produced there is dry and a little over 10% of it is actually red (principally pinot noir).
So, dry with nicely integrated constituents, this example is centred on undemanding green apple, ripe pear and melon flavours.
Those ingredients are given zip by good lime acidity but then everything is boosted by appealing suggestions of mango and peach.
Next comes a 90 pointer
2022 Encostas de Caíz Avesso (£7.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 13%)
I praise Northern Portugal’s little known white grapes regularly so was pleased to see this avesso earning a brilliant 90 points on the Lidl website.
Typically, it has a little of Vinho Verde’s carbonated effervescence to add energy and vitality.
Light bodied and smooth, it exhibits spritzy quince, apple and apricot flavours coupled with lively sherbet lemon acidity.
Hints of the sweeter spices then add sophistication to the package.
Now for the first of the reds
2021 Peuceta Primitivo Puglia (£5.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 13.5%):
It is no accident that primitivo grapes do so well in Italia’s Puglia region.
The long, hot summers there help this sun-loving variety to prosper while the area's moisture retaining soil ensures serious drought conditions are avoided.
Cooling breezes from the Ionian and Adriatic seas also help control the overall heat.
However, judge the quality of the wines it produces for yourself with this nicely crafted but great value offering
Concentrated with a nutty background, it is centred on textured plum, cherry and blackcurrant sauce flavours.
These are complemented by touches of baking spice and ginger and pleasingly modest tannin.
Can’t have value reds without Portugal.
2019 Torre de Ferro Reserva (£6.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 13.5%)
Poor granite based soil can be good for wine production partly because its coarse graining helps provide good drainage – especially if the vineyard slopes steeply.
Portugal’s Dao region has plenty of illustrations of those characteristics.
Incidentally and counter intuitively, poor soil where plants struggle for nutrients, can be a good thing.
Where a vine has to a devote major effort to merely surviving, the berries it produces are often smaller and – here’s the good news – thus contain more concentrated flavours.
Full yet smooth, the wine itself features dense blackberry, loganberry and damson flavours.
Then mocha savouriness, balanced acidity, soft tannin plus black pepper and incense components all join in.
To South America for a beefy blend
2020 CXV Premium Red Blend Argentina (£9.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 14.5%):
Although the label is silent about the contents of this blend, I am guessing it involves two of Argentina’s top three grapes (by volume) – malbec (obviously) and cabernet sauvignon.
The result is big and rounded and very much on the mark for the beef that plays such a prominent part in that country’s cooking.
There is a vague sweetness to the rich flavour range here which includes intense prune, black cherry and mulberry elements along with aniseed, thyme and chocolate influences.
Finally to a giant of the Southern Rhȏne
2020 Vacqueyras (£12.99 at Lidl while stocks last and 14.5%):
Physically close to Chateauneuf du Pape and often so in terms of quality (but seldom in price), Vacqueyras is one of the top level Crus of Southern Rhȏne.
This is a particularly savoury and full example of red Rhone’s but lovers of that style will appreciate that £13 is a great price for a skilfully crafted Rhȏne Cru wine awash with meaty and liquorice components.
Smooth and ebullient, it provides concentrated blackberry and figgy flavours embellished by good acidity (but limited tannin) partnered by tarry sage, cinnamon and black pepper hints.
Note:- Some stores may have the (pictured) 2021 vintage – which I have not tried – so these comments only apply to 2020 versions, which should be widely available.
After today’s review covering £6 to £13 price points, it’s back to concentrating on budget level stars in Monday’s Top Tip selections. Make sure you join the party.
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