Of course, we all love those sensational and brilliant wines that appear several rungs up the price ladder and that grace any occasion however special.
But “special occasion” is a clue here – most days are not like that.
As folk in wine producing countries illustrate perfectly, “normal” days are what the local equivalent of vin ordinaire is all about.
Such wines need be neither expensive nor sophisticated but, in sensible quantities, they significantly upgrade any mealtime.
In essence, they add a molecule of stardust to what might otherwise be just a mundane re-fuelling stop.
It is precisely that sort of wine that is the focus for the red part of today’s Top Tips post.
Its partner is a stylish sauvignon blanc that is a cut above versions normally available at its list price – even before the current £1 discount is applied.
I hope you enjoy them both.
As usual, images and hyperlinks are provided where possible to make buying these wines that little bit easier.
Good informal mealtime drinking
So here is that inexpensive red, which uses the cariñena grape (from the Spanish region of the same name) in a blend that also features garnacha and tempranillo.
While not especially subtle or complex, 2019 Marques de Carano Gran Reserva (£5, instead of £6 until 15 August, with a Tesco Clubcard) is – as I said earlier – an ideal companion to informal midweek mealtimes at home.
Garnet in colour, it has textured, earthy, cherry, plum and smoky tobacco flavours with oaky smoothness, bright acidity and moderate tannin.
South Africa sauvignon to relish
Despite shortages of New Zealand sauvignon blanc, the UK retains its love for that variety.
Chilean versions partly fill any void but, as this excellent example demonstrates, South Africa probably comes closest to matching those vibrant Marlborough qualities.
With a restrained but creamy texture, 2021 Fairtrade Irresistible Sauvignon Blanc (£5.50 – instead of £6.50 until 16 August – at the Co-op) is centred on leafy gooseberry, grapefruit and asparagus flavours.
Those elements are neatly enlivened by a pithy acidity that, in turn, is complemented by a savoury finish containing sage and ginger touches.
Drop by again on Thursday for my regular post on supermarket promotions that also reveals my Friday Treat and Sunday Best recommendations.
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