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value wine archives 1999-2001

Current value wines are here.

white - red

 white wines
 

Monteney (France) Bordeaux Blanc 2000
Wine of the week 16/12/01. Blend of oak-aged Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc. It is fresh and appetising on the nose, with citrus fruit and a little hint of buttery richness. On the palate it is clean and crisp, with a fine sense of purity, but backed up with just a suggestion of creaminess and apple fruit from the Sémillon. With a modest 12% alcohol, this is a lovely wine to drink with fish, seafood or maybe a Caesar salad. £3.99 Aldi.
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Neethlingshof (South Africa) Sauvignon Blanc 2001
Wine of the week 02/12/01. Very fragrant with passion fruit and lush tropical aromatics and a crisp herbal edge. On the palate it is brimming with juicy orange, lemon and grapefruit zestiness in a fairly explosive mix; a great lip-smacking burst of fruit. Dry and nicely balanced, the finish is long and pure. Very good indeed. £5.99 Oddbins.
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Domaine du Pré Baron (France) Touraine Sauvignon Blanc 2000
Wine of the week 25/11/01. Nicely punchy, ripe, gooseberry and herbal nose with vivid aromatics suggesting lychee, ogen melon and nettles. The palate it is quite richly-textured, with elegant, crisp, well-defined citrus fruit, vivacious acidity and a long, sherbetty, minerally finish. Quite stylish, and with good concentration in an easy to drink 12% alcohol format. Delicious stuff. £5.49 Thresher, Wine Rack, Bottoms Up, Victoria Wine.
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Feudi di San Gregorio (Italy) Fiano di Avellino 2000
Wine of the week 04/11/01. Crystalline purity on the nose; luscious notes of pear, almond, beeswax and honeysuckle. Cool, melony fruit on the palate, but rich texture and hints of honeyed, exotic fruit. The fine, long finish shimmers with acidity. This is a delicious unoaked wine of great richness, yet terrific poise. It is available by the case from the other stockists listed. £8.99 Oddbins branches, also Virgin Wines, Everywine.
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Château de la Gravelle (France) Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Sur Lie 2000
Wine of the week 28/10/01. This has a charming, delightfully nutty nose of almond, pear and straw, with just a hint of honey and wild flowers. On the plate a little prickle of sparkle creates a zesty, crisp, wonderfully juicy and fresh impression, with quite fat lemony fruit and more hints of nutty richness. Long and beautifully balanced, this was sensational with moules marinière and crusty bread. £4.99 Safeway.
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Yering Station (Australia) Sauvignon Blanc 2000
Ashanti (South Africa) Reserve Chenin Blanc 1999
Ashanti (South Africa) Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 07/10/01. Three bin-end bargains! The Yering Station Sauvignon is full of passionfruit and gooseberry aromatics, and juicy, rich fruit. The Ashanti Chenin is fermented in French oak barrels, it has a nutty, toasty nose and a palate full of sweet peach and apricot fruit. The Ashanti Chardonnay has a nutty, vanilla and butter character with rich, chewy fruit on the palate. A case made up of these would be a wonderful white selection. £3.99 each
greatgrog.co.uk. Label image.

De Bortoli (Australia) Semillon/Chardonnay 1999
Wine of the week 30/09/01. Elegantly-oaked, creamy ripe melon and pear-fruited nose. The palate is well-balanced at only 12.5% alcohol, with buttery, rounded fruit and mouthfeel, plenty of crunch from apple and pear acidity, and just hints of rich, more tropical fruit. That deft sheen of oak warms the finish and makes for a balanced, easy drinking white with some real style. £4.49 SPAR stores.
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Weingut Hiedler (Austria) Grüner Veltliner 2000
Wine of the week 16/09/01. Fine but quite powerful nose of white pepper, pear and melon, and delicately exotic nuances. On the palate it is quite full with a wonderfully authoritative spine of mineral acidity, but plenty of ripe asian pear and crisp apple fruit, again a lively peppery quality and a long, dry finish. Wonderfully different and delicious stuff, that will also age well if cellared.
Berry Brothers and Rudd £7.95. Label image.

Terrazze della Luna (Italy) Pinot Grigio 2000
Wine of the week 26/08/01. This has a peachy, nutty, aromatic nose that fairly explodes in the mouth with sweet-edged nectarine and ripe pear fruit. The silky texture adds to a rich impression, with a lovely buttery character, then good acidity makes for a powerful, balanced finish. Bottoms Up, Wine Rack £5.99
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Fire Mountain (Germany) Riesling 2000
Wine of the week 12/08/01. Juicy ripe pear and lime fruit on the nose and lush, full clean apple pear and citrus flavours on the palate. Just a hint of being off-dry before tangy sherbet lemon and grapefruit acidity firms up the finish. Sainsbury £3.99
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35 South (Chile) Chardonnay 2000
Wine of the week 05/08/01. The nose offer plenty of ripe pear fruit and a touch of apricot, with an overlay of creamy, butterscotchy oak and a zesty hint of citrus. On the palate it is medium-bodied and translucent, with crystal-clear pear and peach fruit, a little honeyed nuance and plenty of vanillin oak warming up the finish. £4.79 Safeway
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Pecorari (Italy) Pinot Grigio "Lis Neris" 1999
Wine of the week 22/07/01. Sweetly-perfumed nose of honeysuckle, almonds and delicate nectarine fruit. On the palate there's a real impression of sweetness from rich, ripe fruit - like peach juice and pear - with a broad base of acidity and creamy texture leading to a luscious mouthfeel. Succulently packed with fruit, this is as classy as it is delicious. £10.95 (
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Auburn Hills (Australia) Clare Valley Riesling 2000
Wine of the week 08/07/01. Finely perfumed nose with exotic hints of lychee and tropical fruit, blossom and a light waxiness. The palate is weighty with a rich, oily texture and lots of juicy, ripe pear and apple fruit and hints of that luxurious tropical sweetness. £5.99
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Nepenthe Vineyards (Australia) Lenswood Semillon 1998
Wine of the week 24/06/01. Will develop, but hard to resist now for its ripe, honeysuckle and melon aromas tinged with butter and lime, leading on to a smooth, dense, creamy palate. There is white fruit and citrus, vanilla and a gentle, smoky toastiness. Balanced by generous acidity into a long finish. £9.99 Oddbins
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Vergelegen (South Africa) Chardonnay 2000
Wine of the week 17/06/01. Mellow and subtle, with some toasty butteriness on the nose over luxurious peach fruit and some lovely citrus undertones. The palate has a weighty texture and is buttery again, but crammed with summery fruit; lots of slightly sour green apple acidity keeps it fresh and savoury, but crystal-clear fruit and tropical nuances persist. £6.49 Sainsbury's
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Cristoffel Berres (Germany, M-S-R) Urziger Würzgarten Riesling Spätlese 1993
Wine of the week 03/06/01. An outrageous bargain. There's a toast and honey complexity on the nose over a waxy lime fruit and a nutty character. The palate is quite sweet with a nicely herbal quality to ripe peach fruit and good apple acidity. This fine wine is drinking beautifully. Majestic £4.99.
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Fetzer (California) Echo Ridge Viognier 2000
Wine of the week 20/05/01. The nose is the absolute essence of ripe, juicy pears with hints of honeysuckle and the cool, elegant palate has enough zest to lift the plump, weighty pear and peach fruit that shimmers across the palate. £6.99 Tesco, Oddbins, Majestic, Thresher, BU, Waitrose
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Brampton (South Africa) Sauvignon Blanc 2000
Wine of the week 13/05/01. The nose is bursting with tropical fruit, lychee, citrus and a definite new-mown grassy edge. On the palate, a rich, mouthfilling texture has an edge of sweetness to super-ripe pineapple, pear and herbal fruit before bracing, deep lemon and mandarin orange acidity. greatgrog.co.uk £5.69
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Le Vieux Mas (France) Marsanne/Viognier 1998/99
Wine of the week 29/04/01. The nose is buttery and full, with little floral notes and lightly herbal nuances over weighty, peach and apricot fruit. On the palate it is full and powerful, with a chewy texture and plenty of fruit. Bottoms Up, Wine Rack £4.49 Label image.

Danie de Wet (South Africa) Chardonnay 'sur lie' 2000
Wine of the week 08/04/01. A Chardonnay for the 'anything but Chardonnay' club: no sign of blowsy, overripe tropical fruit, no smothering with oaky custard aromas, no overpowering alcoholic soup that tires the senses after a few sips. This has enough creamy, biscuity richness from the lees ageing to counterbalance tingling fresh lemony fruit. The palate broadens but stays sharp, adding a nutty, oatmeally quality. Safeway, £3.99
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Quiltro (Chile) Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 11/03/01. Made in a fresh, tropical sunshine style, the nose offers vibrant citrus fruit aromas, along with an overlay of tropical guava and pineapple sweetness. On the palate it is juicy and uncomplicated, but full of peach and lemon fruit, quite creamy and full, with a really zingy, fruit-burst character. Oddbins £3.99
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Buitenverwachting (South Africa) Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 04/02/01. Heavenly nose of honey, butterscotch, lemon and oatmeal. On the palate it is richly-textured and floods the mouth with ripe, spiced-apple fruit, cream and ground almonds, whilst a steely backbone of lemon and lime gives definition and length. A toasty, spicy layering is very classy and the finish is wonderfully pure and long. Oddbins £8.99
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Clos Petite Bellane (France) Côtes du Rhône Blanc 1999
Wine of the week 28/01/01. A 50/50 blend of Roussanne and Viognier, this richly golden wine has delicious aromas of peaches and butterscotch, with a floral lift and a tantalising glimpse of burnt orange. On the palate it is full, rich and lush with a heady blend of sweet fruits, alcohol, an underlying nuttiness. Oddbins £5.49
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Hilltop (Hungary) "Virgin Vintage" Sauvignon Blanc 1999
Wine of the week 21/01/01. The nose suggests bright, crunchy tropical fruit, with a typical gooseberry and blackcurrant-leaf edge of a more herbal quality. The palate is fresh and medium-bodied with lots of bursting, crunchy fruit, a hint of pineapple sweetness and then freshening citrussy, grapefruit acidity. Safeway £5.99
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Waterside White (South Africa) Chardonnay/Colombard 1999
Wine of the week 03/12/00. A fresh and aromatic white, where the crisp liveliness of the Colombard is given weight and juicy texture by the Chardonnay. The pale straw colour doesn't hint at a powerful (13.5% ABV) wine, and the nose has lots of floral and exotic fruit notes. The palate is rich and full, with buttery citrus flavours and chewy texture. Safeway £4.55, Sainsbury £4.49
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Pirramimma (Australia) Late Harvest Riesling 1998
Wine of the week 19/11/00. Lots of luscious tropical fruit on the nose and palate. Notes of quince, sweet vanilla, marzipan and honey. Orange is the overriding fruit flavour - very marmalady - with peach and lime-jelly fruit and good acidity. Good, pure finish. Excellent dessert wine. Majestic £5.99 (50cl)
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Vergelegen (South Africa) Chardonnay 1998/9
Wine of the week 05/11/00.Beautifully poised and elegant, with a nose of butterscotch, pear and peachy fruit, little nuances of ginger and cinnamon, and a lovely clarity that reminds me of classy white Burgundy. On the palate there's a gorgeous balance of buttery tropical fruit: rich, round pineapple and ripe melon, a certain nutty, savoury quality and lovely citrus acidity. Sainsbury £6.49
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Domaine Kuentz-Bas (Alsace) "Signature" 1998
Wine of the week 15/10/00. The fruit profile here is aromatic on the nose with lots of floral and grapy aromas as well as fresh apple fruit and sweeter, melony notes. The palate is quite full and rich with lots of clean, crisp fruit and a little spicy nuance. Lovely stuff at the price. Unwins, Wine Society, Wimbledon Wine Cellars £4.99.
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Cono Sur (Chile) Gewürztraminer 1999
Wine of the week 01/10/00. Crisp, delightfully perfumed nose of bursting lychee, grapefruit and Turkish delight. The palate has limpid pear and guava fruitiness and bright orange zestiness. It is medium-bodied and beautifully balanced. Majestic / Tesco £4.99
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Inycon (Italy) Chardonnay 1999
Wine of the week 17/09/00. This has a delicate butterscotch richness over orchard fruit and luxuriant tropical nuances. It has a lovely palate displaying just a sheen of custardy vanilla but also layers of deep, ripe juicy fruit. Sainsbury £4.99
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Louis Jadot (Burgundy) St-Veran "Domaine de Curis" 1998 Wine of the week 03/09/00. This has a pale straw colour and a pure, citrus fruit character on the nose with apple and honeysuckle nuances, hints of butterscotch. On the palate it has plenty of fresh acidity and good orchard fruit flavours with medium body and a nutty dryness. Waitrose £7.99
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Domaine de Montahuc "Comte Cathare" 1998
Wine of the week 20/08/00. This gorgeous dessert wine is attractively fresh and flowery on the nose, with a subtle honeyed edge to soft, white pear and peach fruit on the palate. The raised alcohol is barely noticeable into an polished, long, sweet and pure finish. Oddbins £5.99 per 50cl
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Domaine des Fontanelles (France) Viognier 1999
Wine of the week 06/08/00. Hallmark Viognier characteristics of peach, apricot and blossom on the nose with a clean but full-bodied palate of pear and peach and a delightful orangy zestiness. The mouthfilling fruit is nicely balanced by tangy acidity. Majestic £3.99
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Carta Vieja (Chile) Sauvignon Blanc 1999
Wine of the week 23/07/00. This is a cracking Sauvignon. Chill it well and enjoy the essence of crunchy gooseberry and tropical fruit flavours offset against the bracing citrus acidity. Delicious stuff for summer drinking. Oddbins £3.99
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Fetzer (California) Bonterra Muscat 1998
Wine of the week 15/01/00. The nose is sweet and grapy with floral, summery overtones and notes of currants and raisins There are hints of sweet parma violets and old-fashioned love-heart sweets. On the palate it is deliciously honeyed and sweet and reminds me of peach juice. It is quite light-bodied but unctuous and finishes with good acidity. Oddbins £7.99 per half bottle
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Bethany (Australia) Riesling 1998
Wine of the week 09/07/00. The nose is dominated by mineral, white fruit and even salty aromas, but limes and spice are in there too. Cool, classy and eleganty fruited on the palate, this is a very crisp style without any of the waxy, petrolly headiness of some rieslings. Majestic £5.49
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Casablanca (Chile) Santa Isabel Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 25/06/00. Eighty percent of this wine is cool fermented in stainless steel, the remaining 20% is aged in small oak barrels on its lees. This results in a pale golden wine with very fresh aromatics of lemon, melon and pear with a subtle layering of creamy oak beneath, and restrained and cool nuances of sweeter pineapple fruit. Oddbins £6.99
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Vereinigte Hospitien (Germany) "Sanctus Jacobus" Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett 1992
Wine of the week 04/06/00. This has beautiful, delicate waxy lime aromas leading to a perfectly weighted palate with refreshing crunchy green apple fruit, little hints of tropical pineapple sweetness and a shimmering citrus acidity. Gorgeous mature Riesling - and fantastic value. Majestic £4.99
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Domaine Lafage (France) Muscat Sec 1999
Wine of the week 07/05/00. This Vin de Pays d'Oc wine from the South of France celebrates the Muscat's grapy aromatics and fruity flavours, but vinifies these totally dry to give a tangy, refreshing wine. There are orchard fruits on the nose as well as a boiled sweets and a tiny sherbety burst which hints at a gentle pétillance. Safeway £3.99
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Domaine de Raissac (VdP d'Oc) Viognier 1999
Wine of the week 30/04/00. A fine Viognier with a powerful yet flowery, fragrant nose with juicy peach, apricot and tropical fruit aromas. Good acidity keeps it very fresh, but there is abundant peach and melon fruit, full body and good length. Majestic £4.99
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Norton (Argentina) Torrontés 1999
Wine of the week 23/04/00. Intensely perfumed floral nose with hints of confectionery, violets and zingy lime and tropical fruit. The palate is quite light, and those zippy lime and lemon flavours carry through. There's a fine sense of purity and freshness with crisp acidity, but very easy to drink. Oddbins £4.49
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Pewsey Vale (Australia) Eden Valley Riesling 1999
Wine of the week 02/04/00. This has that characteristic nose of zesty lime, wild flowers and a tropical note. There's just a hint of waxiness. On the palate it is quite unctuously textured, but medium-bodied with with very good fruit, a ripe intesity of flavour and crisp, citrus acidity keeping it sharp. Tesco/Oddbins £5.99
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Domaine des Deux Roches (Burgundy) St-Véran 1998
Wine of the week 19/03/00. This outstanding wine has an absolutely typical nose of melon, pear, honeysuckle and a hint of butter. On the palate it is weighty and full-textured with rounded but clean flavours of apple and pear, a certain lusciousness and nuances of brazil nut and cinammon. Acidity is subtle but ample. Berry Bros & Rudd £7.65 (www.bbr.co.uk) (03/00)
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Domaine des Fontanelles (France) Sauvignon Blanc 1999
Wine of the week 12/03/00. This has a very fresh nose with a grassy edge and boiled-sweet aromas. Delicate but pure perfume of pear-drops. The palate is just as fresh: it has lots of citrus and gooseberry fruit that really gives an impression of sweetness, but it finishes dry with plenty of crisp, clean-as-a-whistle acidity. Majestic £3.99 (03/00)
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Marqués de Riscal (Spain) Limousin Reserva 1996
Wine of the week 27/02/00. Aged in top-quality barrels of Limousin oak, the nose is wonderful, with luscious aromas of buttery brazil nuts, melon and honeysuckle, peach and some cinnamon spice. On the palate it is quite full-bodied. The fruit is predominantly apple and melon, but there's that buttressing of creamy, buttery oak and a toasty wrapping of nuts and herbal nuances. AmiVin £7.99 (02/00)
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Dashwood (New Zealand) Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 1999
Wine of the week 13/02/00. From the excellent Vavasour winery, the nose has a beautiful combination of classic leafy gooseberry and nettle aromas with pure, ripe lychee and mango notes. On the palate it is fresh and stacked with zippy apple and lemon flavours along with glimpses of that sweet tropical fruit, but the whole thing punched through with a streak of pure citrus acidity that leaves it tangy and mouthwatering. Thresher £6.99 (02/00)
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Seaview (Australia) Bottled Fermented Brut N.V.
Wine of the week 12/12/99. This has plenty of yeasty, toasty richness on the nose and a palate filled with clean citrus fruit, then rounded-out with more mellow peach and apricot flavours. The mousse is creamy and the wine has a nice balance. A straightforward wine, but one that's absolutely spot on as a party fizz. Majestic £6.49 (12/99)
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Organic Soave Superiore 1998
Wine of the week 26/12/99. The nose displays a lovely honeyed richness and floral edge to ripe pear and citrus fruit. Quite full on the palate, it is limpid and pure, there are layers of peachy fruit and fine acidity. A cracking Soave from certified organic vineyards. Safeway £4.99 (12/99)
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Viña Porta (Chile) Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 28/11/99. This wine has a very flashy nose, with heaps of toasty oak and ripe peach and apricot fruit. There are little hints of sweet tropical pineapple too. The palate is quite succulent and savoury with plenty of gingery spice and an almost spearminty ripeness of fruit. There's a nice depth, with suggestions of bitter-orange and darker flavours. Oddbins £4.99 (11/99)
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Sainsbury's White Bordeaux (France) N.V.
Wine of the week 21/11/99. Nose of lemon and peach, with a slightly grassy note. The palate is balanced and fresh with plenty of citrus fruit, but also a buttery softness in the mouth that makes it very drinkable on its own, or with fish or maybe Chinese food. Exemplary cheap wine. Sainsbury £3.29 (11/99)
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Montana (NZ) Marlborough Reserve Chardonnay1996
Wine of the week 24/10/99. Fine, aromatic nose of limes and unctuous, buttery tropical fruit. There are limpid notes of pineapple and even coconut, and just a little enhancement from charry oak. On the palate it is poised and elegant, with a wonderful purity of fruit, great balance and a long, long finish. Victoria Wine/Thresher/Bottoms Up £7.99 (10/99)
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Three Valley Select (California) Muscat 1995
Wine of the week 10/10/99. This Muscat is made from late harvested grapes and qualifies as off-dry. The nose has fresh aromas of grapes and ripe melon with pretty floral nuances. On the palate there's an intense burst of sweetness before broad, juicy, peachy fruit fills the palate and some lemon and lime acidity kicks in to leave the finish quite dry and savoury. Oddbins £3.49. (10/99)
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Lagar de Cervera (Spain, Rías Baixas) Albariño 1997
Wine of the week 19/09/99. Nose of flowers, minerals and salts with a citrus tang, but also an oatmeally, almost buttery note. Palate is quite rich and alcoholic with fine pear, peach and lime fruit and a hint of sweetness. Good balance and length. Sainsbury, £6.99 (09/99)
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Hardys (Australia) Banrock Station Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 05/09/99. This wine has a delightful nose of powdered ginger, cinnamon and wax over buttery fruit. On the palate the fruit is quite cool and lemony, with fresh melon and apple notes, the edges softened by a little sheen of vanilla from moderate exposure to oak. Sainsbury £3.99 (09/99)
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Fox Wood (France) Reserve Chardonnay 1997
Wine of the week 22/08/99. This Chardonnay displays a grown-up marriage of ripe, tasty fruit and some serious Old World structure. The nose has buttery oak and the palate combines peachy fruit with gentle acidity and a savoury, spicy, food-friendly character. £6.49 Internet retailer Amivin (08/99)
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Neszmély (Hungary) "Hilltop" Gewürztraminer 1997
Not so overtly perfumed as typical Alsace examples, the nose has developing aromas of lychee and tropical fruit. The palate is spicy and full-flavoured, with quite tart raspberry fruit, plenty of alcohol and body and a powerful finish (07/99) Thresher £4.69.
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Garden Valley (France) Chardonnay VdP du Jardin de la France 1997
Lightly-oaked sappy, honeysuckle aromas with notes of pear and melon. It is fresh with good acidity, a creamy mouthfeel and more of that white fruit character. Savoury and good both on its own or with food. Thresher, Victoria Wine £4.49 (07/99).
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Domaine de Raissac (VdP d'Oc) "C.V.M." 1998
Nose of cinammon, cloves and ginger with vanilla and peach. On the palate it is savoury and spicy with powerful peach fruit, a nicely sour plummy edge and good acidity. (06/99) Majestic, £4.99.
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Banrock Station (Australia) Chenin Blanc/Semillon/Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 27/06/99. Nose of spice, wax, wool and notes of cinammon and cloves. The palate is full, flavoursome and smoothly-textured with buttery citrus fruit, excellent balance and good length. (06/99) Sainsbury, Safeway £3.49.
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Newlands Field (South Africa) First Release Colombard 1999
Wine of the week 06/06/99. Delicately perfumed and flavoured crisp white with subtle tropical fruit and tangy acidity. It is refreshing and summery and slips down a treat. Asda £2.29 (06/99)
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Ca' del Solo (California) "Bloody Good White" 1997
Wine of the week 23/05/99. Oxidised aromas of over-ripe melon, sweet nectarine and rancid butter. The palate is oily and dense, with great buttery layers of fruit, fine citrus acidity and hints of spice and herbs. It is mouthfilling and luscious with a long finish. Oddbins £6.49 (05/99)
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State Domain Trier (M-S-R) Serriger Heiligenborn Riesling Spätlese 1990
Beautiful aromatics of flowers, limes, petrol and unctuous guava and pear, all tinged with honey. The palate is opulent with sweet peach and tropical fruit, but a beautifully pure core of acidity that keeps it balanced and sharp through a long, fruit-laden finish. Majestic £4.99 (05/99)
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Cave de Turckheim (Alsace) Pinot Blanc 1997
Wine of the week 16/05/99. The nose is nicely waxy and honeyed with tropical hints on top of melon fruit. The palate is quite full and lush with ripe pear and melon flavours and notes of spice. A good all-round food wine. Oddbins £4.99 (05/99)
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Santa Carolina (Chile) Chardonnay 1998
Wine of the week 02/05/99. Creamy, nutty nose and hints of butterscotch, tropical fruit and warm toast. Medium bodied, the plate has excellent balance with fine, ripe but restrained tropical fruit flavours, lovely lime-fresh acidity and moderate toasty oak in the finish. Oddbins £4.49 (05/99)
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Verdicchio Classico dei Castelli di Jesi 1997
Lemon-scented wine with a fragrant, herbal nose and lots of cool melon and citrus fruit. Medium-bodied, it is beautifully fruity and really quite elegant. This wine has far more character than most Italian whites in the sub £5 category. Tesco £3.99 (04/99)

Matra Mountain (Hungary) Pinot Grigio 1997
Wine of the week 14/03/99. The nose has nettles, crisp green apples and citrus fruit. The palate has a real lemony freshness, with some nice pear-drop fruitiness and an almond note. Pure, nicely made and cheap. £3.79, Safeway (03/99)
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Domaine Gerovassiliou (Greece) Chardonnay 1996
Wine of the week 28/02/99. Hugely oaky, charred, burnt, buttery toast aromas at first seem overwhelming, but the full-bodied palate has beautiful definition with fruit of lemons and cool melons, plenty of hazelnut and butter richness and unusual, herbal nuances. The finish is long and spicy. Oddbins, £6.49 (02/99)
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 red wines
 

Estancia (California) Pinnacles Pinot Noir 2000
Wine of the week 30/12/01. The 2000 vintage saw a more "hand-crafted" approach to Pinot Noir at Estancia which has paid off handsomely. It has an appealing nose of vanilla, crushed red berries and gentle earthy, truffly warmth. The palate is doused in a big mouthful of sweet strawberry fruit, with a nicely silky texture and a lingering smoke and tobacco note. Decent value at £9.99, but with £3 off it is a top buy. Safeway £6.99 until 05/01.
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Château Fontenil (France) Fronsac 1998
Wine of the week 23/12/01. Dense, plummy, blackcurranty nose that is very deep, with nuances of cedar. It is driven along by dense black fruit that adds a chocolaty richness to the palate, with some plum-skin roughness and plenty of depth. There are ripe tannins and this finishes with class and length. Very good indeed in a powerful style. £12.99 Oddbins.
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Infierno (Spain) Monastrell/Merlot 1999
Wine of the week 09/12/01. The nose is brimming with sweet, spicy berry fruit, with a little undertow of creamy vanilla, prune and crunchy pepper. On the palate there's a wonderful bitter dark chocolate edge to juicy blue/black fruit that is succulent and savoury with lip-smacking tannins and a warm, coffee-bean finish. Very highly recommended. £4.99 Safeway.
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Accademia del Sole (Italy) Sangiovese/Negroamaro 2000
Wine of the week 18/11/01. The nose is hugely inviting, with deep, creamy tobacco-tinged fruit, plum, berries and a hint of sweet molasses. On the palate there's a lovely scented cherry sweetness with fine, medium-bodied texture and a broad, gentle acidity. Mellow tannins give a savoury appeal, and this has good length and a smoky, vanilla-edged sweetness on the finish. Safeway £5.49.
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Rio Itata (Chile) Carmenère 2000
Wine of the week 11/11/01. The nose is filled with creamy black plum, hints of chocolate and a cedary nuance. On the palate that sumptuous ripe fruit floods across the tongue with a little cherry edge of acidity and a background of tannin to keep it sharp. Opulent, sweet and beautifully focused.
Was £5.69, now £3.99 (bin-end) from
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Heritage Vineyards (California) Red 1999
Wine of the week 21/10/01. Big, inviting, opulent nose of sweet vanilla, spice and lush blackberry and plum fruit. On the palate it is chewy and densely-fruited with a chocolaty depth of sweet, ripe and juicy fruit. There's that slick of spicy oak and just a little tannic bite keeping it fresh enough. Nothing complex here, but your dinner party guests won't know this fruit and character-packed red comes at such a keen price. Terrific stuff. £3.99 SPAR branches.
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Primi (Spain) Rioja 2000
Wine of the week 14/10/01. This is the very modern face of Riojan wine, a vibrant, discreetly-oaked red wine designed for today's tastes and today's market. It has plenty of sweet cherry fruit on the nose, and a dry, savoury palate that displays more cherry and plum fruit and a chewy, gently tannic core with good acidity. Balanced and refined, this is a fruity and food-friendly red of some style. £4.99 Safeway, Somerfield, Tesco, Bibendum.
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Domaine des Lauriers (France) Faugères 1998
Wine of the week 23/09/01. Wonderfully deep, polished, creamy nose that is not too flashy, allowing dark, glossy blackberry and blackcurrant fruit to shine through. On the palate it is dramatically rich and powerful, with full body and sweet, sweet blackcurrant and plum fruit that is terrifically ripe and generous. Silky tannins bolster the finish, and the wine has impeccable balance. Long and fantastic stuff. Selected Safeway £5.99.
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Bodegas Castaño (Spain) Hécula 1999
Wine of the week 09/09/01. This wine benefits from subtle oak ageing to present a nose of sour cherries, spice and stewed fruit compote, buttressed by silky sweet vanilla. On the palate it is poised and elegant, belying its 14% alcohol. The medium-bodied wine fills the mouth with sweet-edged blackberry and plum fruit, again a warm clove spice note, and generous slightly coffee-flavoured oaky finish.
ChateauOnline.co.uk £6.99. Label image.

Santa Julia (Argentina) Tempranillo 2000
Wine of the week 02/09/01. This has a deep and sumptuous nose that belies a £4.49 price tag, with tobacco, clove and cinammon spice intertwined around rich berry fruit. The palate is packed with sweet, fat cherry and and ripe strawberry fruit that has a dark, fudge-like, warming background of tannins, lowish acidity and a long, fruity finish. Undeniably classy red wine at the price. Sainsbury's £4.49
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Normans (Australia) Cabernet Sauvignon/Cabernet Franc 1997
Wine of the week 19/08/01. Densely crammed with succulent raspberry fruit. Beneath, a solid, deep, briarwood, tobacco and almost punch-like mulberry character displays cinammon spice and nutmeg. On the palate it is warm and chewy, with full body and silky texture to deep, savoury blackcurrant and raspberry fruit and fine, chocolaty tannins. Safeway £7.99
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Borie de Maurel (France) Rêve de Carignan 2000
Wine of the week 29/07/01. Dense, dark, liquorice and black cherry nose, with hints of sweet violet and blackcurrant. On the palate it maintains a firm, tight, forceful character, but with no lack of juicy black fruit and a creamy texture. Oddbins £7.49
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Domaine Laporte (France) 'Ruscino' 2000
Wine of the week 16/07/01. Big, sweet, tarry and smoky nose of leather and cherries. The palate has an instantly dry and savoury appeal with mouth-coating tannins and loads of damson and black plum fruit. Medium bodied and well-balanced, this has a bit of structure too. £5.99 Oddbins
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Antinori (Italy) Chianti Classico Riserva 1997
Wine of the week 01/07/01. A beautifully elegant with a nose of leafy cedarwood, tobacco, plum and a hint of roasted meat. There's a soft, spicy layer of sweet vanilla and some bright redcurrant fruit nuances. On the palate the acidity is forceful and gives the wine definition and clarity, whilst cherry and sharp damson-skin fruit tingles on the palate. A little creamy oak adds weight to the finish. £8.99 Safeway
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Four Vines (California) Zinfandel 1997
Wine of the week 11/06/01. Highly aromatic nose of cedarwood, burning embers, pepper and exotic spices with a bright, berry fruitiness. The palate is creamily-textured and ripe, filled with sweet, jammy blackcurrant fruit, still fragrant and exotic, with a deeper suggestion of sweet plums. The tannins and acidity brace the finish. £9.99 Sainsbury's
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Cosme Palacio y Hermanos (Rioja) 1998
Wine of the week 28/05/01. The nose is softly layered with sweet summer berry and plummy fruits, wrapped in a cloak of spicy, mellow, tobacco and vanilla. On the palate it has a warming core of fine tannins and gutsy ripe fruit, but there is also a medium-bodied elegance and savoury, moreish sweet fruit-cakey mid-palate. £6.99 Safeway, Oddbins
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Picajuan Peak (Argentina) Malbec 2000
Wine of the week 05/05/01. Wonderfully spice-dusted nose of black fruit and a hint of sweet, chocolaty darkness. On the palate it is grippy, with fine tannins, but a weight of supple, savoury dark fruits and a little creaminess to the body before that shot of tannin. Tesco £3.89
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Château Sérigeau (France) Bordeaux 1999
Wine of the week 22/04/01. This has leafy, earthy, soft red fruits on the nose with a sweet, minty ripeness suggesting cassis. The palate is pleasing, with cherry and redcurrant fruit, a nice tobacco-tinged softness, little tannin but good acidity. ChateauOnline £3.99 Label image.

Domaine de Tudery (France) Saint-Chinian Vieilles Vignes 1998
Wine of the week 15/04/01. Powerfully spiced and lushly fruited wine with dark damson aromas and a liquoricy depth. On the palate this is juicy, supple stuff with good acidity and drying tannins, a definite meatiness about the palate and plenty of rich spiciness in the finish. Safeway £5.99.
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Château de Sours (Bordeaux) Rosé 2000
Wine of the week 01/04/01. This wine has a gorgeous deep, vibrant pink colour and an immediately appealing nose, redolent of roses, violets and ripe, sweet summer berry fruits. Those crisp, fruity flavours continue, joined by a yeasty, almost Champagne-like quality to the fruit and a delicious, raspberry tart freshness. This wine really is like a breath of fresh, fruit-filled, air. Majestic, Corney & Barrow, ItsWine.com £6.99
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Château Mansenoble (France) 1999
Wine of the week 25/03/01. The nose is powerful and tight, with aromas of cedar, cherry and damson plums and juicy blackcurrant with a wonderfully clean, unoaked freshness. On the palate the fruit is framed by savoury tannins and a tough sheen of tightly-focused, chewy bittersweet fruit and acidity. Nicely textured, this is the kind of wine that reveals itself slowly as the sheer depth and quality of fruit emerges. Chandos Deli £5.99
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Casa Lapostolle (Chile) Merlot 1999
Wine of the week 18/03/01. Cedary, cigar-box aromas, cherry and blackcurrant fruit, some hints of chocolate and a bittersweet note. On the palate it has juicy acidity and firm, ripe tannins as well as plenty of sweet but savoury black plum fruit. Thresher, Bottoms Up, Oddbins,
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CrownCap (Italy) 1998
Wine of the week 04/03/01. This has an expressive nose of juicy unoaked summer berry fruit, dusted with spice and enlivened on the palate by a juicy edge of acidity. There's a little rum-soaked raisin darkness, but this is fruity, warming, lip-smacking wine. ChateauOnline £4.29
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Haselgrove (Australia) Bentwing Shiraz 1998
Wine of the week 18/02/01. Lovely stuff with brightly-focused nose of peppery black fruits and a raspberry sweetness. There's just a hint of that typically Australian eucalyptus and mint quality. On the palate it is medium-bodied and easy to drink with relatively low tannins. Safeway £7.99
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Gracia de Chile 'Pasajero' Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Wine of the week 11/02/01. Six months maturing in French oak barrels has given a subtle toasty complexity on the nose. The wine also displays beautiful cherry and blackcurrant fruit and there is more of that bittersweet cherry fruit flooding the palate. Although there's a plummy depth of flavour to this wine, it is brightly styled, with juicy acidity and tannins. Oddbins, Virginwines.com, Co-op £5.99
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Bela Fonte (Portugal) Jaen 1998
Wine of the week 07/01/01. Rich and dark, full of creamy cherry fruit and dark, spicy tobacco and plum. This is delicious wine that could well be the ultimate match for pizza. Safeway £4.99
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Domaine Boyar (Bulgaria) Premium Cuvée Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Wine of the week 31/12/00. Unoaked and fresh in style, this is juicy, blackcurrant and cherry scented Cabernet with a spine of tannins in the mouth and little nuances of plum and chocolate beneath fresh red fruits. Somerfield £3.99
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Fetzer (California) Valley Oaks Zinfandel 1998
Wine of the week 17/12/00. The nose is beautifully deep and spicy, with rich, warm, winter berries and a sweet jamminess of fruit. On the palate it is very punchy and fresh, notes of blackberry, raspberry and a peppery edge. There is good ripeness and a lovely support from integrated oak adding cream to the texture and a tobacco spice to the finish. Majestic/Oddbins/Safeway/Thresher £6.99
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Santa Julia (Argentina) Bonarda/Sangiovese 2000
Wine of the week 10/12/00. The colour is a fresh ruby and the nose has soft tobacco scents, with a briary quality and some earthy bramble fruit. On the palate there is lots of tart, crisp cherry fruit from the Sangiovese, but then that tobacco, cigar-like, smoky softness rolls back in. Morrison's/Sainsbury/Waitrose £3.99-£4.49
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Domaine de Contenson (France) Merlot 1999
Wine of the week 26/11/00. The nose is crammed with summer berry fruit, spice and a little hint of vanilla. On the palate this has plenty of attack and grip, with concentrated red fruit flavours that are ripe and juicy, but given lots of backbone through solid tannins and plenty of acidity. Safeway £4.49
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Normans (Australia) Old Vine Grenache 1998
Wine of the week 12/11/00. This blends a wonderful nose of juicy, full blackberries and rich chocolate and plum with a gorgeously spicy but subtle oak. The beautifully-honed palate is just like biting into ripe, crunchy raspberries and blackberries with bittersweet fruit flooding the mouth and again that warming, deep, velvety depth of fruit and silky, ripe tannins endowing the wine with a sumptuous quality. Safeway £7.99
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Bethany (Australia) Grenache 1999
Wine of the week 29/10/00. Bright, focused, crunchily aromatic fruit on the nose with suggestions of pepper, mulled spices and sweet cassis, berries and a very ripe character. Medium to full-bodied, there's a real creaminess to the texture and plenty of sweet, juicy berry fruit and a little tart red cherry note. Majestic £6.49
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Zuccardi (Argentina) "Q" Tempranillo 1998
Wine of the week 08/10/00. Though glazed with sweet, custardy oak, there are layers of bursting berry fruits, cinammon, tobacco and fudge. On the palate the ripeness of fruit carries through. It is dry and dusty, with a jammier edge that just suggests sweetness, but then ripe, silky tannins kick-in and an infusion of aromatic spice and herbs reappears in a long finish. Tesco/Bottoms Up/Selected Wine Racks £7.99
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Alteza (Spain) "600" Old Vines Garnacha
Wine of the week 24/09/00. The nose is layered with really sweet, distinctly egg-custardy oak over spicy bramble and berry fruit. On the palate it is soft and mellow with uncomplicated juicy fruit that is medium-bodied and freshened by soft tannins and moderate acidity. Sainsbury £4.99
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Tesco Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 1999
Plum, chocolate and ripe, sweet blackcurrant fruit of the nose. The palate offers a very concentrated but seamless picture of sweet black fruits melded to silky tannins and low to moderate acidity. The picture is one of plush, smooth fruit, but there's enough bittersweet bite. Tesco £4.99
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Bodegas Esmeralda (Argentina) "Argento" Malbec 1999
Wine of the week 13/08/00. This has a vivid purple colour and a nose that wafts crunchy berry and plum, gravel and earth, and a smouldering oakiness. On the palate the wine is impressively concentrated with a viscous, almost syrupy mouthfeel, but then smooth tannins bite and the bittersweet edge of chocolaty dark fruit grips the mouth. Wonderfully lush. Thresher/Wine rack/Bottoms Up £4.99
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Borie de Maurel (France) Minervois "Spirit d'Automne" 1999
Wine of the week 30/07/00. This is a lovely wine, with fruit, suppleness and a bittersweet nose of chocolate and plum. On the palate it is full bodied and chewy textured with a depth of ripe plum and cherry fruit and a nice liquorice edge that combines with fine tannins to add a savoury complexity. Oddbins £5.99
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Martins (Argentina) Andino Malbec/Bonarda
Wine of the week 16/07/00. Spice-laden aromas give way to earthy plum and berry-scented fruit with a little tobacco note. On the palate it is full of soft, gluggable bramble fruit, little bitter cherry notes and plenty of dark, earthy, spice and cedarwood. Thresher/Victoria Wine £3.99 Label image.

Safeway Australian Ruby Cabernet/Shiraz 1999
Wine of the week 02/07/00. Possibly the barbecue wine to end all barbecue wines. It has a bright crimson colour and the nose displays a floral edge to extremely spicy cinnamon, nutmeg and mint-leaf aromatics. It is genuinely like taking the lid off a jar of mixed spices. Safeway £3.99
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Marietta Cellars (California) Old Vines Red Lot 23
Wine of the week 11/06/00.This strapping wine is a deep crimson/black and has lovely nose of creamy blackberry, ripe jammy fruits and mint humbugs. Firm, juicy and structured on the palate, there is a liquorice edge to blueberry and blackcurrant fruit and a long, spicy and smoky finish. Oddbins £7.99
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Deakin Estate (Australia) Shiraz 1999
Wine of the week 28/05/00. On the nose it is sumptuous, with dark chocolate, spice and ripe plum notes. Little highlights of pepper and much jammier raspberry fruit give it an edge. On the palate loads of juicy blackcurrant and plum fruit, a slick of vanillin oak and lots of fireworks from pepper, spice, nutmeg and charcoal. Tannins are quite soft and acidity is moderate. Oddbins £5.49
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Trulli (Italy) Primitivo Salento 1997
Wine of the week 21/05/00. Syrupy, dense, jammy fruit character on the nose and the palate has plenty of sweet and sour cherry fruit with nuances of leather and game. Nice lemony acidity lifts the finish, which is moderately long. Oddbins/Victoria Wine £4.49
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Valdivieso (Chile) Barrel Selection Malbec 1999
Wine of the week 14/05/00. New Worldy ripeness of minty blackberry and dusty blueberry fruit. It has an immediate sweet-edged attack on the palate with succulent black fruits, good tannins and a lovely juicy ripeness and purity. Majestic £5.99
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Brown Brothers (Australia) Barbera 1996
Wine of the week 30/04/00. Dark, dense crimson robe and a sweetly aromatic nose of blue/black fruits. There is a minty ripeness and lovely support from vanilla fudge-like oak. The palate is chocolaty and dense with plenty of oomph and a very attractive profile of that creamy oak merged with sour plum fruit and firm cherry-skin acidic bite. Peckham's/Oddbins/Waitrose £6.99-£7.99
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Andrew Quady (California) Elysium 1997
Wine of the week 16/04/00. The aromas are fresh and exotic, with floral, old rose nuances as well as a hint of tea, plum and chocolate. On the palate it is sweet and quite refined, with no harsh elements, and a fairly simple but delicious set of ripe fruit flavours. Majestic £6.49 (04/00)
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Domaine de la Rocalière (Rhône) Lirac 1997
Wine of the week 09/04/00. The nose is at first a little jammy, but it goes on to reveal charcoaly, earthy baked plum fruit. The palate is smooth and medium-bodied with round, juicy flavours of plum, blackcurrant and berries. Majestic £6.99 (04/00)
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Caliterra (Chile) Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
Wine of the week 26/03/00. The wine has a gorgeous nose displaying lush plum aromas, creamy vanilla and a terrific darkness of chocolate and mint. On the palate it is smooth and medium to full bodied, with plenty of plum and blackcurrant fruit. There is a nice framework of tannin and a low acidity. Thresher/Wine Rack £4.49 (04/00)
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Pepperwood Grove (California) Zinfandel 1997
Wine of the week 12/03/00. The nose has a mass of cream and berries, a touch of pepper. The palate displays good fruit with a dark plum and plum-skin bitterness, cherry and a grippy tannic edge. This has some real substance and is filled out with a deft layer of oak. Wine Challenge. Victoria Wine, Peckham.s (Scotland) £5.99 (03/00)
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Les Vignerons à Tain l'Hermitage (Rhône) Crozes Hermitage 1998
Wine of the week 20/02/00. The nose is very attractive with a gamy, charcoaly edge to light raspberry fruit and a little creamy note. On the palate the wine is juicy and chewy, with lean tannins and acidity keeping it quite edgy, but with lots of dusty, peppery black fruit and tart raspberry endowing it with a savoury character. Sainsbury £5.99 (02/00)
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Domaine Spiropoulos (Greece) Porfyros Dry Red Wine 1997
Wine of the week 06/02/00. The nose is very soft with cedary, tobacco aromas overlaid on spicy red berry fruit. On the palate it is medium-bodied and nicely balanced with a core of earthy berry fruit, a nice support from gentle toasty oak and fine tannins and acidity. Oddbins £5.99 (02/00)
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Sainsbury Costières de Nîmes (France) 1997
Bargain blend of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre from the southern outskirts of the Rhône valley at a clearance price of £2.99. Nose of crushed berries and cream with some pepper and spice. Palate of sour cherry and blackcurrant fruit. Sainsbury £2.99 (01/00)
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Weingut Gröhl (Germany, Rheinhessen) Dornfelder Rotwein Trocken 1998
Wine of the week 23/01/00. Beautifully aromatic with jammy, sweet, summer berry fruits on the nose and confectionery hints of parma violets and cherries. On the palate it has good fruit - again sweet berries and a plummy note - but there is also a backbone of tannins and acidity. Theredandwhitewine.co.uk £6.15 (01/00)
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Terra Viva (Italy) Vino Rosso
Wine of the week 09/01/00. Soft, subdued and summery with aromas of sweet currants and red cherries. The palate too is soft, with a dense, mellow mouthful of berry fruits and again that little bitter cherry note adding interest. Tesco £3.99 (01/00) .
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San Vito (Italy, Tuscany) Chianti 1997
Wine of the week 19/12/99. The gorgeous nose is crammed with juicy black cherries, nutmeg, tobacco and polished-wood aromas. These lead on to a palate brimming with succulent, crunchy black fruits, mouth-watering blackberries and sour cherries. Safeway £6.49 (12/99)
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Oxford Landing (Australia) Merlot 1998
Wine of the week 05/12/99. This wine has a fragrant, powerfully fruity nose of plum, blackcurrant and raspberry which wafts from the glass. There is a chunky black chocolate depth too and some underpinning spice from American oak. On the palate it is silky and mouth-pleasing with a hint of sweetness, but a rugged fruitiness too. Thresher £5.49 (12/99)
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Zagara (Italy) Nero D'Avola/Sangiovese 1998
Wine of the week 14/11/99. From Sicily comes this beautifully made inexpensive red, brimming with fruit yet savoury and food-friendly. The nose has cherries, vanilla and hints of aromatic violets. The palate is medium-bodied and again there's a lovely ripeness of cherry and raspberry fruit. Sainsbury £3.99 (11/99)
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Fontein (South Africa) Cinsaut/Merlot 1998
Wine of the week 31/10/99. This attractive wine has light raspberry fruit on the nose that is jammy and ripe, yet there's a spiciness and darker hints of earthiness that add a lot of interest. On the palate it is quite firm, with some tannins and moderate oak. Oddbins £4.49 (10/99)
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Dom Ferraz (Portugal) Dão 1997
Wine of the week 17/10/99. This is an absolutely brilliant wine for a fiver. The nose has gorgeous aromas of juicy black fruits, smoke and earthy truffles, the whole picture rounded out with subtle, sweet and spicy oak. The palate is just as winning, with chewy bramble fruit, great depth of flavour and a lovely savoury, spicy finish. Tesco £4.99 (10/99)
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J.Vidal-Fleury (France) Côtes-du-Ventoux
Wine of the week 03/10/99. This spicy, syrah-based wine has a charcoaly, burning embers quality on the nose, with crisp black fruit and a touch of white pepper. The palate is very dry with moderate tannins, alcohol and acidity. There is good creamy berry fruit. Majestic £4.99 (10/99)
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Tesco "Prestige" (France) Grenache 1997
Wine of the week 26/09/99. Sweet raspberry jam, liquorice and pepper on the nose, little hints of tree bark and cherry. Palate has earthy fruit that is quite concentrated and spicy. Tesco, £3.69 (09/99)
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Temple Bruer (Australia, Langhorne Creek) Shiraz/Malbec 1996
Wine of the week 12/09/99.A dark chocolate, mulberry and eucalyptus nose immediately suggests Australia. Masses of sweet, ripe, Porty fruit and a treacle note. The palate is more serious and tannic than the nose suggests, with plenty of acidity. It is long, savoury, dark and tannic into the finish. Tesco, £6.99 (09/99)
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Von Ortloff (South Africa) "No 7" Merlot 1997
Wine of the week 29/08/99.Deep, baked-plum, tobacco and chocolate nose. The fruit has a serious, firm edge. Quite old world in style (Pomerol), the wine is creamy and savoury with a leathery quality, but lots of rich dark fruit and oak too. Oddbins £6.99 (08/99)
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Yalumba (Australia) Oxford Landing Merlot 1997
A very appealing, easy drinking wine full of tobacco, spice, chocolate and plummy fruit. There's a really rich and ripe character to this wine which has dark, bitter-sweet damson and blueberry fruit. Tesco £5.99 and widely available (08/99)
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Fox Wood (France) Old Bush Vine Syrah 1998
Wine of the week 15/08/99.Smooth, pepper, raspberry and garrigue nose (little scents of herbs and wild flowers). The palate too is smoothly-textured and refined with a charcoal edge to sweet black fruits, a black pepper note and a long, pure finish. £5.99 Majestic (08/99)
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d'Arenberg (Australia) "d'Arry's Original" Shiraz/Grenache 1996
Wine of the week 08/08/99. Juicy, super-ripe nose of sweet cherries, vanilla and cinnamon. The palate is quite firm, with blueberry fruit, big mouth-drying tannins and well-judged lemony acidity. Oddbins £6.99 (08/99)
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Les Caves des Hautes-Côtes (Burgundy) Hautes-Côtes de Nuits 1996
Wine of the week 01/08/99.Sweet cherry fruit and aromas of fresh, damp earth dominate the nose, with a sheen of smoky oak. On the palate the wine is soft, silky and caresses the mouth with red fruits and spice. The moderate finish is elegant and nicely supported by fine tannins and balanced acidity. Tesco £5.99 (08/99)
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Domaine Madelon (France) Corbières 1998
Wine of the week 18/07/99. Packed with creamy berry fruit on nose and has little hints of pepper and earth. This has a chocolate richness on the palate with sweet blackcurrant fruit. Spicy, peppery oak and a tannic backbone add depth. Majestic £3.99 (07/99)
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Berberana (Spain) Rioja Tempranillo 1997
This has a bright, fruity, cherry nose with some vanilla and a hint of dark chocolate. There are firm tannins on the palate, but also good berry fruit, spice and a toffee note. Savoury and juicy, this would be great with red meats or pasta. Majestic £4.99 (07/99)
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Icardi (Italy) Barbera d'Asti 1997
Wine of the week 04/07/99. Smoky and sweet on the nose, with juicy cherry fruit and notes of dark chocolate and almonds. On the palate, a nicely sour set of flavours: cherry again and lemony acidity, spices and earthy fruit. Oddbins £5.99 (07/99).
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Icardi (Italy) Tre Uve Ultima 1997
Wine of the week 20/06/99. Structured, serious black-cherry nose with notes of tobacco and herbs. On the palate it is dense, with big drying tannins and a chewy texture. It has masses of lush fruit, yet earth, spice and balancing acidity add backbone. Oddbins £5.99 (06/99)
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Conde de Siruela (Spain) Ribera del Duero 1995
Wine of the week 30/05/99. The nose is creamy and dense with blackcurrant, mint and liquorice aromas. There is plenty of tannin over a core of smoky plum and blackberry fruit. A wine that is structured and serious enough to benefit from 3 to 5 years cellaring. Sainsbury £7.49 (05/99)
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Celler de Capçanes (Spain) Mas Collet 1997
Wine of the week 09/05/99. A blend of several grapes, this has creamy aromas on the nose with forest berries, vanilla and spice. On the palate it is dense, earthy and meaty with fine tannins and a notable lemony acidity in the finish. Majestic £5.49 (05/99)
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Señorio de los Llanos (Spain) Valdepeñas Gran Reserva 1990
Wine of the week 04/04/99. This wine is very reminiscent of old-fashioned Rioja Gran Reserva at around half the price. It has a wonderfully sumptuous nose of vanilla with hints of spice and berry fruit. On the palate it is dry and velvety-soft, but there is some decent strawberry and darker, elderberry fruit. Majestic, £4.99 (04/99)
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Abbotts (Minervois, France) "Cumulus" Shiraz 1997
Wine of the week 28/03/99. a delightfully aromatic wine with sweet berry aromas suggesting dusty, peppery, blackberry fruit. Quite fat and mouth-filling with lots of ripe fruit. Creamily-textured and really quite a chocolaty depth of flavour. £4.99, Victoria Wine (03/99)
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Caballo de Plata (Argentina) Bonarda/Barbera 1998
Wine of the week 21/03/99. Subdued aromas of soft, jammy, black fruits. On the palate, plenty of damson and other stone-fruit flavours, spicy with a soft tannic structure and good acidity. Fruit is warm, crunchy and juicy, with lighter cherry flavours emerging. £3.49, Safeway (03/99).
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Talus (California) Zinfandel 1995
Wine of the week 07/02/99. There are super-ripe berry fruits - loganberries, blackberries - on the nose and cool, peppery, fruit flavours on the palate. It has a creamy texture and the finish is quite long with some oak and well integrated acidity. Bottoms Up, £5.99.
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Ironstone Vineyards (Australia) Grenache/Shiraz 1996
The nose is like a sweet cherry pie, with underpinning notes of bramble fruit and black pepper. On the palate a lush, rich mouthful of chewy fruit. There are notes of cinammon spice. Tannins are quite firm and suggest good ageing potential. Majestic, £6.49 (02/99)
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