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value wine archives 2010-2011

Current value wines are here. Link to older archives at bottom of page.

white - red - rosé - sparkling - sweet

 white wines
 

Esk Valley, Marlborough Dry Riesling 2010, New Zealand
Wine of the week 04/12/11. This has a salty lick of minerals on the nose, over lemon and apple fruit, with a complex but discreet appeal. On the palate it bursts into juicy life, with a great weight of sweet fruit and texture, and a perhaps just, just off-dry style. It fills the mouth with ripe, almost tropical fruit and its weighty personality, but then a lovely core of juicy lemon and grapefruit pulls everything tightly together in the finish. £10.45, Cambridge Wine Merchants, WoodWinters, Slurp.co.uk.
(see full video review)

Viognier de Pennauitier 2010, France
Wine of the week 09/10/11. Excellent Viognier character with peachy apricot fruit and pear, a touch of floral, honeysuckle personality and a hint of nutty richness. On the palate that full fruitiness is immediately restrained and the 13% alcohol suggests it was picked early, which also means acidity is good and the wine has a tautness that keeps it fresh and interesting well into a second delicious glass. £7.25,
Berry Bros & Rudd (£6.52 by the case). (see full video review)

Iona Sauvignon Blanc 2010, South Africa
Wine of the week 25/09/11. Iona is one of the best producers in Elgin, their Sauvgnon Blanc consistently showing fantastic intensity, but mineral purity and precision too. This has herbal and gooseberry punch and vivacity, but it has a great steeliness too, the palate showcasing plenty of sweet, ripe fruit, but all draped around a fabulous core of mouth-watering acidity. £10.99, Majestic and Waitrose. See all UK stockists on
wine-searcher. (see full video review)

Turckheim, Alsace Riesling 2009, France
Wine of the week 11/09/11. Resolutely crisp and sharp, perhaps with something in kin with the Clare Valley style. It is flooded with citrus on the nose and just a tiny hint of waxiness, before an enormous rush of grapefruit on the palate. This is all about that mouth-watering citrus verve and push, and though a fairly simple style, it has great food-matching capabilities - more details and specific food matching suggestions in the video. £7.99, Majestic.
(see full video review)

Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc 2011, New Zealand
Wine of the week 04/09/11. Powerful, vivacious and classic nose of gooseberry with green beans and passionfruit and more exotic mango and lychee notes. The palate is burstingly fresh, with those tropical notes draped over tight apple and citrus, and a long, dry and food-friendly finish. More details and food matching suggestions in the video. Widely available at around £9.99.
(see full video review)

Rocca Vecchia, Falanghina 2010, Italy
Wine of the week 14/08/11. Nose of melon rind and apple skins, suggesting fruitiness but also a certain waxy grippiness. There are tiny notes of nuts and herbs too. On the palate it bursts with flavour: lots of ripe, juicy melon again, and of ripe pear and apple, before a decisive core of lemony acidity. It finishes with a real squirt of fresh lemon and grapefruit that is tart and lip-smacking. More information and food match suggestions in the video. £5.99, The Co-operative.
(see full video review)

Marks & Spencer's Pecorino 2010, Italy
Wine of the week 07/08/11. Deliciously mineral, concentrated nose like walking through a lemon grove, with little salty and nutty nuances. On the palate there's a fine core of apple and citrus fruit, those nutty tones again and a great sense of mid-palate concentration. The finish is long in a taut, food-friendly and relatively subtle wine of great precision. More information and food match suggestions in the video. £9.99, Marks & Spencer.
(see full video review)

Marks & Spencer, Gascogne Blanc Cuvée Spéciale 2010, France
Wine of the week 24/07/11. With just 11.5% alcohol this is ideal for sipping in the garden or with light lunches and salads. The nose has gooseberry, elderflower and a touch of something tropical like lychee or mango: a panoply of summery aromas. The palate has ripe peach and pear fruit, with a zesty lemon profile to the acidity that gives perfect balance to a zingy, versatile and delicious mid-summer sipper. £5.99, Marks & Spencer.
(see full video review)

Tesco, Picpoul de Pinet 2010, France
Wine of the week 19/06/11. Fabulously intense, fabulously fresh noseful of apple and lemon zest, and a palate giving a tang of herbs and salts, of gravelly wet stones and that riveting, streaking freshness that races across the tongue. With 12.5% alcohol and bottled under a screwcap, this is a banker for seafood and shellfish, and is dry and utterly delicious. £7.29, Tesco.
(see full video review)

La Metropole, Cuvée Classique 2010, France
Wine of the week 12/06/11. Little custard notes on the nose join apricot and peach, with a nutty undertone. On the palate there is plenty of sweet stone fruit, but a broad, expansive texture and a finish that verges on a touch of astringency - but that acid and grippy character also means this easy-drinking wine has the clout to be a good and versatile food wine. More info and food matching suggestions in the video. £6.99, The Cooperative.
(see full video review)

Tons de Duorum 2010 white & 2008 red, Portugal
Wine of the week 29/05/11. A pair of wines from a new producer in Portugal's Douro Valley, the white is a blend of local grapes, it has punchy, Sauvignon-like aromas with a touch of herbs and a lime and melon-skin character. The red is another blend of Douro grapes and brims with berry fruit and floral nuances, before a palate packed with berries and some rustic tannic charm. For stockists, full reviews and more information, watch the video. Around £8.49, see stockists at
wine-searcher. (see full video review)

Torres, Santa Digna Gewürztraminer 2010, Chile
Wine of the week 22/05/11. Rose petal and exotic mango and lychee fruit and floral perfume, but there's a baked apple pie quality too that makes it very inviting. It hints at being off-dry, but there's so much orange and grapefruit acidity that wooshes across the tongue that it is absolutely fresh in the finish. For more thoughts, information, current stockists and food matches, see the full video review. £7.99 from a variety of independent wine merchants. See stockists at
wine-searcher. (see full video review)

Cuvée de Richard, VdP Comte Tolosan 2010, France
Wine of the week 01/05/11. A real Sauvingon Blanc-like herbal lift, as well as a blast of lemony fruit. On the palate that mouth-watering zestiness continues, but there's enough peachy, soft, ripe fruit to ensure there's nothing tart or thin here: just a fresh, punchy and deliciously gluggable wine - especially at that price, and with a picnic-friendly 11.5% alcohol. More information and food matching ideas in the video. £4.79, Majestic.
(see full video review)

SPAR Australian Chardonnay Reserve
Wine of the week 24/04/11. At its regular price of £5.99 this would not get my vote, but on offer it might make it a handy white wine standby. It is lightly oaked, with a pleasantly vanilla-touched nose giving some oatmeal to tropical, ripe melon and mango fruit. On the palate it is full-bodied, with sweet fruit and nothing challenging, the gentle acidity and creamy touch of oak making it quaffable and food friendly. Food match ideas in the video. £4.49, SPAR.
(see full video review)

Tahbilk, Marsanne 2007, Australia
Wine of the week 03/04/11. This slowly maturing 2007 has aromas of honey and honeysuckle, lemon zest and apricot. On the palate the full texture and fine, racy fruit is sliced through by decisive citrus and apple acidity to juicy, savoury effect. Watch the video for more information. From £8.99, see all stockists on
wine-searcher. (see full video review)

d'Arenberg, The Stump Jump 2009, Australia
Wine of the week 27/03/11. Searingly fresh aromas of lime cordial, blossom and then ripe, sweet melon fruit, it hits the palate with quite a broad texture thanks to the Marsanne, but then that beautiful clarity of citrus and stone fruits. It is very ripe, very fruity, but the shimmering acidity of the finish and modest 12.5% alcohol gives it elegance. Watch the video for more information and food-match suggestions. £8.35, Slurp.co.uk.
(see full video review)

Blind River, Sauvignon Blanc 2010, New Zealand
Wine of the week 13/03/11. A touch of barrel ageing has added a little smoky, creamy influence but which is really all about classically punchy, vivacious and vibrant leafy green notes and succulent fruit. Long, tantalising and tinglingly fresh, it has a white fruit raciness, those leafy green herb notes and a touch of mid-palate creaminess adding contrast and texture to the pithy grapefruit finish. Mid-way between Sancerre and full-on Marlborough style. £12.99, Oddbins or £10.39 as part of a mixed half dozen.
(see full video review)

Seven Springs, Sauvignon Blanc 2010, South Africa
Wine of the week 27/02/11. The nose is not flashy or showy, with intense green fruit, a light seasoning of nettles, and plenty of lemony and mineral cut. On the palate this is mouth-wateringly lucid and dry, the fresh green apple and lemon zest fruit just betraying hints of a more luscious, more peachy character beneath, and the texture filling out slightly on the mid-palate thanks to some ageing on the lees. Finishing with food-friendly freshness and a dry elegance, this is a terrific first effort. Around £10 from barwines.co.uk, underwoodwines.co.uk, proteaswines.co.uk.
(see full video review)

Bellingham, Bernard Series Chenin Blanc 2009, South Africa
Wine of the week 13/02/11. Ripe, gently honeyed intensity with hints of smokiness, hints of vanilla, and a very creamy, oatmeally luxury. But there is masses of apple ripe pear fruit too, and onto the palate a glorious freshness and vitality with a great blast of citrus, and a long, long finish with a swirling, mineral smokiness amongst the sweet fruit and orangy tang of the acidity. Terrific stuff. £10.99 in Majestic, but £8.79 until May 2011.
(see full video review)

Yali, National Reserve Viognier 2010, Chile
Wine of the week 30/01/11. Soft, downy peach and ripe mango aromatics and a palate that just explodes with fruit cocktail flavours that flood across the mouth. But there is a central core to this wine too, of lemon and lime acidity off of which those more luscious, tropical flavours hang into a long, balanced finish. £7.99, but £6.39 on offer when you buy two, Majestic.
(see full video review)

Milton Vineyard, Riverpoint Viognier 2009, New Zealand
Wine of the week 16/01/11. The nose is lusciously honeyed and peachy, with a touch of toffee and savoury honeysuckle character. On the palate it floods across the tongue, the slick, almost oily texture filled with almost meaty flavours, the savoury density adding to that impression, though really sweet-toned, apricot and peach fruit asserts on the mid-palate. Wow, this is a big wine, but it never overbalances as a core of tight, white fruit and mineral acidity is always part of the picture. £11.75, Vintage Roots.
(see full video review)

Tamellini, Soave 2008, Italy
Wine of the week 02/01/11. A lovely hint of honey and nutty, seedy character on the nose as well as Cox's Pippin and lemon fruit in a layered, complex profile. On the palate there's a touch of oiliness to the texture, and that delicious combination of freshness and richness, with some real minerality and lots of waxy lemon fruit. It is a lovely, savoury, quite serious wine that is drinking beautifully. £10.99,
Cadman Fine Wine. (see full video review)

Greywacke, Sauvignon Blanc 2010, New Zealand
Wine of the week 12/12/10. A terrific expression of Marlborough Sauvignon, with huge intesity on the nose and palate. Aromas of fresh cut limes and leafy green herbs precede a palate that is hugely concentrated, with a deal of mid-palate weight and texture, but the vibrantly expressive flavours powering through. Acidity is intense too, leaving this clean and dry and with real persistence. Food matching ideas and a list of independent stockists in the video. Around £13 - £15, see all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

French Quarter, Sauvignon Blanc 2009, France
Wine of the week 28/11/10. Very fresh, with that bright fruit and herbal edge that is very expressive and a little bit 'New Worldy', but then the very light, crisp, dry palate with its lemon and herb flavours is much more true to its European roots. It is a touch dilute - being picked early to acheive those aromatics means it has only 11% alcohol. Not worth its supposed 'usual price' but a decent buy on the current offer. £6.97, Asda.
(see full video review)

Errazuriz, Chardonnay 2009, Chile
Wine of the week 17/10/10. Crushed oatmeal, almond and a creaminess rather than too much toast, the ripe but clean pear and melon fruit beneath being allowed to breathe. On the palate it has crisp orchard fruits and plenty of zippy lemon notes and acidity, that little nutty, oatmeally plushness just filling out the finish. balanced and delcious for sipping, and versatile with fish, schiken and creamy sauces. RRP is £7.99 at Majestic, Sainsbury's, Asda, Booths and Peckhams, See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Pewsey Vale, Eden Valley Riesling 2009, Australia
Wine of the week 26/09/10. The nose has very attactive, lightly smoky and mineral notes over waxy, lime and lemon rind fruit. On the palate it is bone dry. It slices through the mouth with rapier-like acidity, but it is far from thin: the pristine, lemon and lime fruit powers through and this has such lovely balance and finesse that it will age beautifully over 10 years. £10.99, Oddbins. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Secano, Sauvignon Gris 2009, Chile
Wine of the week 12/09/10. Terrific nose, punching though with Granny Smith apples, ripe, pungent pea-pod notes suggestions of a mineral, salty quality too. On the palate it is fabulously vivacious stuff, with loads of intense, dry, apple and scything citrus fruit, but it has roundness and charm, and though the acidity is razor sharp, a fruity sense of bonhomie too. £7.49, Marks & Spencer.
(see full video review)

Asda Extra Special Chilean Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Wine of the week 29/08/10. This bursts with exuberant, youthful fruit on the nose, with a pea-pod crunch and lots of lemon and gooseberry. On the palate there's a herby character, a little dill-like quality, as well as copious sweet fruit and a great tang of citrus acidity. It is fresh and delicious and a great way to kick off the wines of the 2010 vintage. £6.36, Asda.
(see full video review)

Domaine du Bois-Malinge, Muscadet Sèvre-et-Main Sur Lie, 2009
Wine of the week 22/08/10. On the palate this has lots of vibrant lemon and cool, green apple fruit, but also a salty, seashell note (that is very typical) and just a hint of oatmeal in the background. On the palate that fresh, pithy, mouth-watering style continues but again just broadening slightly into a food-friendly dry finish thanks to that lees ageing. A lovely example and only 12% alcohol. £5.99, Morrisons. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Anakena, Single Vineyard Viognier 2009, Chile
Wine of the week 08/08/10. Glorious nose offering a heady melange of powdered ginger, flowers and the downy skins of ripe peaches. On the palate a massive burst of flavour, with apricot and tangy orange flooding across the palate. Delicious aperitif wine, but match it to Thai or Chinese food, creamy risottos or pastas. £7.99, Halifax Wine Company, Hawkshead Wines. Note too that this is the same wine sold by Marks & Spencer online wine store as the 'DOMA' Viognier at £8.99. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Philippe Zinck, 'Portrait' Riesling 2008, Alsace
Wine of the week 01/08/10. Typcial mineral and citrus nose, with a touch of waxiness. On the palate it is deliciously weighty and creamy, but the lemon and lime, succulent fruit drives through, just hinting at something more peachy and ripe. The finish is perhaps just off dry, but it it both sippable and Asian food-friendly. £7.99, Majestic. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Yealands Estate, Pinot Gris 2009, New Zealand
Wine of the week 25/07/10. Appealing nose with lots of ripe pear, juicy Ogen melon and a hint of nuttiness. There's a certain exoticism to some little notes of papaya and pineapple too. On the palate this has a rich, creamy, mouth-filling texture with lots of fruity weight and density, and a sense of concentration. There is ample acidity to freshen the finish, in a deliciously gluggable wine. Available at £8.85 - £9.95, see all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Blind River, Sauvignon Blanc 2009, New Zealand
Wine of the week 04/07/10. Classic, deep-set aromas of elderflower and mango, with a cut of vivid asparagus greenness and plenty of aromatic fireworks to go round. On the palate this is a decisive wine, with good concentration of those punchy, vibrant, tropical fruit flavours and a piercing clarity. Pithy lemon and grapefruit acidity is nicely integrated, in one of the best New Zealand Sauvignons I've tasted from this vintage. £12.99 (£10.39 as part of a mixed case), Oddbins. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Sonoma-Cutrer, Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2006, California
Wine of the week 27/06/10. Delightfully fresh, hazelnut character over crisp, juicy apple fruit. The palate has more of that nuttiness and a slight underpinning honey, but the focus is on fresh fruit and an elegant lemony acidity that has lots of finesse. This is a sophisticated, beautifully balanced Chardonnay of great style. £14.99, Waitrose, Majestic, Booths. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Averys, Pioneer Range Eden Valley Riesling 2009, Australia
Wine of the week 20/06/10. Crystal clear aromas of fresh cut lemon and limes, a touch of grassiness and an ozoney, mineral quality. The palate offers lots of rich texture, a touch of waxiness and that drive of fresh-squeezed lime fruit and acidity. A dry, fish and seafood-friendly wine and marvellously thirst quenching. £8.99, Averys.
(see full video review)

De Grendel, Winifred 2009, South Africa
Wine of the week 06/06/10. This blend of Viognier, Semillon and Chardonnay is a compelling wine that was fermented and aged in French oak, adding loads of character to the nose with buttery Brazil nut aromas over sweet nectarine fruit. On the palate it has ripeness and fullness, but not at the expense of precision as the juicy, butterscotch richness is tempered by firm acidity. Fabulous. £9.99, Oddbins. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Church Mouse, Falanghina 2008, Italy
Wine of the week 16/05/10. Attractive aromas of juicy pear and lemon, but also a hint of crushed oatmeal and fresh straw. On the palate the wine has a mouth-filling weight and texture, with masses of the ripe, juicy pear fruit again before the big, waxy, lemony core powers through. It is a subtle wine in some ways, but powerful too, with a hint of honey in the finish. Click the image above for the full video review. £6.98, Selected Asda.
(see full video review)

Loimer, Grüner Veltliner 2009, Austria
Wine of the week 02/05/10. There is pepper and spice on the nose, a touch of floral character, but lots of crunchy apple and lemon fruit. The palate has a mouth-filling texture and merest hint of sweetness, but the lovely crisp fruit and acidity romps through. £12.99, Rannoch Scott Wines, but note the 2008 vintage at £11.99 is available from Stainton Wines, Christopher Piper and The Fine Wine Co. in Scotland.
(see full video review)

Barone Pizzini, Pievalta Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi 2008, Italy
Wine of the week 11/04/10. Typically nutty character with hints of flowers, herbs and honey, with layers of delicate complexity. In the mouth a ripe, golden, juicy apple crunch and vivid lemon, with that long, nutty mineral finish. £8.99,
Vintage Roots. (see full video review)

 red wines
 

Berry Bros & Rudd, Chianti 2010, Italy
Wine of the week 27/11/11. Made by the organic estate of Badia a Coltibuono. Wonderfully fresh and vibrant, zinging with raspberry crunch on the nose edged with tobacco and earthiness, but really it is all about fruit. On the palate it is light to medium-bodied and has that terrific crunch of raspberry again, with a twist of bitter cherry and a smoothing touch of oak. Fantastic gastronomic stuff. Watch the video for more background and food matches. £10.95,
Berry Bros & Rudd. (see full video review).

Ogier, Lirac 2010, France
Wine of the week 13/11/11. The nose offers a pure black fruit expression, but it is subtle and has a little pepper too. On the palate it is just a very intelligent wine with good balance and not too much of anything - tannin, acid, fruit or sweetness - and that makes it both versatile and very approachable, and with a couple of quid off it's a pretty good buy too. There are food matching suggestions in the video. £8.99, The Cooperative.
(see full video review).

Piccini Memoro NV, Italy
Wine of the week 06/11/11. A dead ringer for a Port with aromas of cherries and chocolate, woodsmoke and flowers, and a beguiling creaminess. On the palate the unsual Port-like impression continues powerfully, with a slippery, silky texture, quite a lot of sweetness and abundant fruit. It is not fortified like Port, but the flavour and aromatic profile is so reminiscent. There is good acidity and a bit of tannin too, but this really needs some food to stand up to the onslaught of flavour and body. More details of this highly unusual wine and food matching suggestions in the video. £9.49, Tesco.
(see full video review).

Battlefield Wines Cabernet Shiraz 2011 & Sauvignon Blanc 2011, South Africa
Wine of the week 24/10/11. Some wines are not only about the quality of the stuff in the bottle. Purchases of these special release will generate money for UK armed forces charities and British servicemen and women. 100% of post-tax profits go to a range of forces charities including the Royal British Legion, Help for Heroes and the Gurkha Welfare Trust. The wines would not normally be 'wine of the week' material at £10, but each is easy-going, fruity and enjoyable and their purchase generates a substantial donation to the charities. £9.99, Sainsbury's.
(see full video review).

Avery's Project Winemaker Mourvèdre 2010, South Africa
Wine of the week 16/10/11. Classically meaty and deep, with plenty of dark bramble fruit but some spices, leather, old polished wood and little floral nuances too in a quite complex profile. The palate delivers a big, substantially meaty and full mouthful, with a stripe of grippy tannin and a little softening edge from ageing in large oak barrels. Robust, chewy, but not without sweet fruit ripeness and charm, it's a lovely wine priced at £8.99 from Avery's (averys.co.uk).
(see full video review).

Castelmaure Corbières 2009, France
Wine of the week 02/10/11. Forward, creamy fruit lift on the nose, but hints of the aniseed and floral garrigue of the south. On the palate there is a bit of grip and liquoricy, endive-like edge that adds lots of savoury structure and interest to the creamy, quite plush berry fruit with that soft approachability. An easy drinker, but with a bit of a dark side. More details and food-matching ideas in the video. £6.99, Morrisons.
(see full video review).

Montgravet, Pays d'Oc Cabernet Merlot 2010, France
Wine of the week 18/09/11. The nose has creamy black fruit to spare, but there's a rhubarb or beetroot-like edge of vegatility that suggests a slightly cooler climate and which is a characteristic of many Bordeaux-style blends. In the mouth the fruit is sweet and creamy, with a little oak underpinning and more of that herby, savoury green cut making this slightly better than your average fruit-forward quaffer. More details and food-matching ideas in the video. £4.99, Waitrose.
(see full video review).

Domaine de Cabrials Pinot Noir 2010, France
Wine of the week 28/08/11. Domaine de Cabrials seems not to be trying too hard and has produced an elegant, unoaked Pinot with a direct cherry fruitiness, a sappy, Beaujolais-like charm and lovely energy in the mouth. This fruity, brightly-focused Pinot may not be complex or ageworthy but it is a lovely, unforced example of the grape. More details and food matching suggestions in the video. £9.40,
bancroftwines.com. (see full video review).

Pitchfork Margaret River Shiraz 2008, Australia
Wine of the week 31/07/11. Good fruit on the nose, an unoaked wine that still has a chocolate and spice depth, with plenty of black berries and a hint of cool climate pepper and gravel. On the palate there is plenty of savoury stuff going on: leather, tobacco, spice and black olive, but the blackberry fruit and juiciness of the acidity gives life and food-friendly appeal. Nice, mellow but supportive tannins complete an attractive picture. More information and food match suggestions in the video. £12.70,
Bancroft Wines. (see full video review).

Marmesa Vineyards, Cabrillo Peak Pinot Noir 2007
Wine of the week 17/07/11. At seven quid in the Bibendum sale this becomes a bargain: there's fresh, sappy Pinot fruit, truffle and coffee on the nose before a light and slightly herbal palate, but the fruit comes through and the charry oak adds some depth and power to the finish. Not the most elegant example, but genuine Pinot character and seriously nice drinking at the sale price. £7.20 from 19th July, bibendum-wine.co.uk.
(see full video review).

Olivara, M.O. de Olivara Toro 2006, Spain
Wine of the week 10/07/11. Having picked up a Decanter Awards gold, it is interesting to the price of this wine slashed from £13.49. The nose brims with deep-set, juicy black fruit, framed by some classy oak and a nicely earthy and gamey spiciness too. On the palate it is deeply fruited, a tight, blue-black seam of fruit and the tannins giving some plum-skin bite to make it savoury and structured. A lot of wine for the money this I have to say. Five years in the cellar will do it no harm at all. £8.99,
winedeal.co.uk. (see full video review).

Pasqua, Passimento 2009, Italy
Wine of the week 26/06/11. The nose has dried cherry and cranberry, and also a little note of herbs and flowers, as well as a background touch of older, tobbacoey oak. On the palate it is smooth and rich, with a certain curranty intensity. It's quite a big wine with 14% alcohol, and although it is not a particularly complex wine and nor is it particularly long, it does have authentic Amarone-like flavours and a bit of style and substance. Watch the video for more information and food-matching suggestions. £7.99, The Co-operative.
(see full video review).

Clos de los Siete 2008, Argentina
Wine of the week 05/06/11. Beguiling nose of pencil-shavings and herbs, with a touch of floral character adding lighter notes to solid black fruit. On the palate this really, really is just like biting in to a ripe, juicy black plum, through the bittersweet skin and into the juicy flesh. All of those flavours are there, along with a touch of smokiness and spice into a long, balanced finish. £12.99, Majestic & Waitrose. See stockists at
wine-searcher. (see full video review).

Ronan by Clinet, Bordeaux 2009, France
Wine of the week 08/05/11. 100% Merlot made by the winemaking team at the famous Pomerol château Clinet, led by Michel Rolland. But this is not from Pomerol, and so carries a price of less than £10. It is flooded with plump, silky, sweet and rich plum and red fruit, just gently layered with smoky oak. On the palate it has that plumpness and richness, but a fine edge of tannin and mineral acidity too. £9.95,
FromVineyardsDirect. (see full video review).

Taste the Difference, Priorat 2007, Spain
Wine of the week 10/03/11. Unashamedly big, ripe and jammy, with a nose flooded with bramble and cassis fruit, plenty of cedar and chocolate oak and a touch of background earthiness. On the palate a great, thick smear of blackcurrant jam crosses the tongue, with abundant ripeness and sweetness, and plenty of oaky depth too. The tannins and acidity do enough to give this balance, but it remains a straightforward, big and very plushly modern example. Watch the video for more information and food matching advice. £9.99, Sainsbury's.
(see full video review).

Château de Pennautier, Terroirs d'Altitude 2008, France
Wine of the week 27/03/11. Vinous nose: the aromas are dark and savoury, of vine fruits, cedar and meatiness, with spices and little cherry notes coming through. It smells deep, serious and savoury. On the palate it has a fleshy depth of sinewy black fruit and tannin, rounding out with oak, and with a keen cherry acidity to keep it fresh. This is a serious style of wine that will cellar nicely for five years or more. £9.99, Majestic.
(see full video review).

Averys Project Winemaker, Carignan 2009, France
Wine of the week 06/03/11. The fruit on the nose has a lovely lifted 'garrigue' note of herbs and wild flowers, some gamey underpinnings and a solid core of ripe black fruit. On the palate the sweetness and ripeness of that fleshy bramble and black plum fruit comes through, with gentle support from the oak and that sinewy, gamey character, and the acidity nice and brightly focused. A lovely wine with complexity and savoury depth. An interesting project indeed. £9.99 Averys.
(see full video review).

Domaine du Pech Rome, Tempranillo 2009, France
Wine of the week 20/02/11. Beautifully clean, graphite-touched nose of juicy blackberries. On the palate there's a creaminess to the texture that is very alluring, the richness of the fruit is concentrated and coats the tongue, and hints of tobacco and subtle spices marry with the ripe tannins in the finish. Really very stylish stuff. Until the 18th of March 2011,10% of the price of the wine goes directly to the Wine Relief charity. £7.99 in Majestic.
(see full video review).

Mont Tauch, Les Garrigues Grenache Noir 2010
Wine of the week 06/02/11. A touch of plum jam richness sprinkled with a little cedar in the background from some oak ageing in older barrels. The fruit on the palate has that same plum and black fruit juiciness, a bite of plum skin and cherry skin tartness and supportive tannins that make it savoury and firm, whilst being juicily easy to drink. £8.99, Sainsbury's.
(see full video review).

Waipara Hills, Pinot Noir 2008, New Zealand
Wine of the week 23/01/11. Fine Pinot nose with earthy and truffly nuances to redcurrant and cherry fruit, underpinned by a little pillow of mellow oak. On the palate the fruit is really quite explosively bright, filling the mouth with quite luscious red berry flavours, but with a sappy, herby energy too and a nice line of tannin and acidity. Dry, savoury but clear and bountiful, it is a lovely Pinot. £12.99, Sainsbury's.
(see full video review).

Ravenswood, Vintners Blend Zinfandel 2007, California
Wine of the week 09/01/11. Majestic has just secured a parcel of wines, this offered at just £4.99. It has a juicy black fruit and cherry nose with some pepper and spice, a background of soft oak and a bit of earthy substance. On the palate plenty of sweet, focused fruit, but enough softening vanilla and a bit of freshening acidity and spice to make it food friendly. The video includes mini-reviews of a couple of other wines from the parcel, and there's a list of what's available at the end. £4.99 whislt stocks last, Majestic.
(see full video review).

Ogier Côtes du Rhône Heritages 2009, France
Wine of the week 19/12/10. This wine brims with vanilla-licked, creamy black fruits with hints of chocolate and pepper on the nose. On the palate the flood of creamy, dense fruit is pulled along by silky tannins to give structure, whilst the wine majors on that savoury but sweet flesh of the fruit. £7.99, Morrisons.
(see full video review).

Bodegas Muriel Rioja Reserva 2004, Spain
Wine of the week 05/12/10. Appealing mocha and vanilla nose, with a plush plummy fruit quality, but also a savoury, gamey edge that is inviting. On the palate there's plenty more of that chocolate and vanilla smoothness, but the deep-set fruit is plush and mouthfilling in a modern style. The edge of juicy cherry and fine tannins make this an adaptable, delicious and food-friendly wine. Food matching tips in the video. £9.99, Majestic.
(see full video review).

Marks & Spencer, Beaujolais Nouveau 2010, France
Wine of the week 14/11/10. Though the heady days of the 'Beaujolais run' are long gone, it is still fun to celebrate this bit of frivolous wine history each year. This example is typically cherry and watercolour paint-box scented stuff, with a sappy freshness. On the palate it is juicy, racy and filled with easy cherry and berry fruit for glugging without too much concern over the ultimate seriousness of the wine. Great fun, and there is more information and some food matching ideas in the video. £6.99, Marks & Spencer.
(see full video review).

Duque de Castilla, Tempranillo Crianza 2006, Spain
Wine of the week 07/11/10. I was half expecting a rather tired, over-wooded and old-fashioned wine, in fact I was pleasantly surprised by the ripe, juicy plum and black berry fruit on the nose, with just smoky whisp of tobaccoey oak. On the palate it is firm and juicy too, the tight tannins and crisp acidity giving a nice food-friendly edge, and the spice and hint of chocolate from the barrels just filling in on the end. It is perhaps a shade lean on the mid-palate, but still it is a very attractive bottle at £4.99. £9.99, SPAR.
(see full video review).

Rosedale, Barossa Shiraz 2008, Australia
Wine of the week 24/10/10. Like a bowl of liquidised black cherries and blackcurrants, with a hint of earthiness and pepper, and a chocolate and toasty depth from just a few months in mostly French oak. The palate heaves with that same silky fruit, the sweetness of the fruit filling the mouth, but all the time creamy tannins and modest but adequate acidity giving length and balance. £7.99, Luvians, The Sampler, Halifax Wine Co. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review).

Wrattonbully Vineyards, Tempranillo 2009, Australia
Wine of the week 10/10/10. This wine brims with plum and raspberry fruit, offset by lovely spice and a sweet underpinning of tobacoo and vanilla from a few months in oak. On the palate it is deliciously easy to drink, that solid, ripe red fruit filling the mouth, but the layering effect of plush tannins, that creamy hint of oak and bright cherry acidity all combining in a stylish, lamb-friendly wine of terrific style. £8.99, Marks & Spencer.
(see full video review)

Torres, Rioja Crianza Ibéricos 2006, Spain
Wine of the week 03/10/10. Lots of vanilla and spice, but sumptuous and luxurious with lots of deep, mulberry and plum fruit. On the palate there is a certain freshness and brightness, the fruit bold and juicy with a creamy texture. Delicious stuff and there are food matches, more background information and detailed comments in the video. £8.99 - £10.99, see all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Tahbilk, Shiraz 2006, Australia
Wine of the week 19/09/10. Rather a lot of oak gives a slightly resinous feel, but the oak is of excellent quality and there is terrific fruit beneath as well as plenty of Shiraz pepper. I am certain it will meld together a little more with time, and indeed this is a wine that will age. In the mouth it is very harmonious, the fruit staying pure and focused and the structure beneath the fruit - the tannins and acid framework - suggesting several years of cellaring potential. About £11.99, see all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Trenel, Chiroubles 2009, France
Wine of the week 05/09/10. Complex aromas with cherry and kirsch, some little red liquorice notes, leafy, brackeny qualities and an earthy freshness. On the palate it is smooth and dry, with that elegant and slightly tart cherry and plum-skin fruit playing against some real fruit sweetness, a hint of chocolaty depth and that fresh, mouth-watering core of acidity and sappy, lightly herbal flavour. Delicious and expressive Gamay. £9.50, The Wine Society. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Viñalba, Malbec Reserva 2008, Argentina
Wine of the week 15/08/10. Beautifully deep but composed, with fine, tightly-wound aromas of black plum and cherry, little smoky and gamy nuances and a lift of violet. On the palate it is dense, rich and chewy, with that firm central core of fruit, wrapped in some chunky, very grippy tannins and the spice of the grapes and oak adding more structure to the finish along with tangy cherry acidity. A big mouthful this, and I think it will be smoother and even better in a year or two. £9.99, Majestic. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

La Chapelle du Marin, Côtes Du Rhône 2007, France
Wine of the week 18/07/10. An unoaked blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre is typically creamy and sweet on the nose, with plenty of blackberry fruit and a little raspberry lift and brightness. The palate delivers more of that full, ripe, berry fruit but it has some structure too with elegant tannins and good acdity to balance. Delicious now but will cellar for a few years. £5.99, findwine.co.uk. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Château de Pennautier, Cabardès 2008, France
Wine of the week 11/07/10. Pure, creamy cassis fruit just touched by cedarwood and graphite. On the palate, this is a very refined, silky wine with nothing showy, but also nothing mean or watery: it has a lovely fruit purity with those gentley earthy and spicy tones pushing through in a pretty long finish. £6.99 Majestic. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Chapoutier, Domaine Tournon Shiraz or Syrah 2008, Australia
Wine of the week 13/06/10. Beautifully graphite-like lift on the nose, with a delicate smokiness, some floral notes and a clear balckcurrant fruit. The wine is unoaked, allowing the fruit to sing through on the palate, where it is medium-bodied and savoury, with the juicy, tart quality of biting into a fresh plum or black cherries, and a fresh, food-friendly finish. £14.49, Oddbins or £10.39 as part of a mixed dozen. See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Jean Bousquet, Malbec 2007, Argentina
Wine of the week 24/05/10. This fabulous wine offers fantastic value for money with its floral-edged, spicy and kirsch-like nose, underpinned by sweet, dark plum fruit and classy French oak. The palate has great balance of depth, power and chewy richness with supple, refined tannins and balanced acidity. A beautifully made wine this. £7.95, Vintage Roots. See all stockists on
wine-searcher. (see full video review)

Henry Fessy, Brouilly 2008, France
Wine of the week 10/05/10. Robust, tight, powerful aromas of dark cherries and spice, and a touch of earthy grip. On the palate there's a depth of black fruit here, with a realy focus of cherry and a backbone of tight, savoury tannins. This is a real food wine, which would be good with duck and wild mushroom dishes, as well as hard cheeses. £8.99-£9.99, Waitrose, plus independent merchants: see all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

 ros
 

Famille Negrel Rosé de Provence 2010, France
Wine of the week 06/11/11. Opens with notes of dry reducrrant and cranberry fruit, with lemon peel notes too. On the palate it has plenty of acidity that is quite mineral, but has the character of raspberry and lemon too, though it is not without fruit ripeness on the mid-palate. November may seem like an odd time to recommend a wine that we think of as the ultimate summertime style, but I picked up some interesting food-matching ideas in Provence too that proved to me that these are versatile food wines given half a chance - there are suggestions in the video. £9.99, Majestic.
(see full video review)

Domain Houchart Provence Rosé, France
Wine of the week 15/05/11. This has a lovely herbal and cherry freshness on the nose, with imediately delicate notes hinting at flowers. The palate is fresh as a daisy, but fruity and with a certain mouth-filling creaminess too. More information and food match suggestions in the video. £6.95, The Wine Society.
(see full video review)

Explorers Vineyard Rosé 2009, New Zealand
Wine of the week 31/10/10. Made by blending Riesling and Pinot Noir, this fresh, breezy and unusual pink is delicious. the soft, summery red berry fruit of the Pinot set against the herbal and citrus notes of the Riesling, to give complex aromatics and a crisp, focused palate with lime freshness and that sweeter berry and earthy quality sneaking in. It is off-dry, but finishes with excellent balance. The video also includes some food match suggestions. £7.49, The Co-operative.
(see full video review)

 sparkling
 

Elio Perrone, Moscato d'Asti 2010, Italy
Wine of the week 03/07/11. This has beautiful floral and herb notes on the nose, a palate filled with sweet, peach down fruit and a refreshing element of acidity that whilst playing second fiddle to the sweetness, does enough to keep this elegant and very fresh. A joyuous summer in the garden tipple, and there are more details and some interesting food-matching ideas on the video. £6.75, The Wine Society.
(see full video review)

Fresita, Sparkling wine with Patagonian Strawberries, Chile
Wine of the week 30/05/10. Made with an all-natural infusion of Patagonian strawberries in a sparkling base of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Moscatel, this has lifted aromas of strawberry and a touch of patchouli, leading onto a palate where the strawberry flavour persists but sits nicely within quite a crisp, elegant acidity, the wine staying fresh to the finish. £7.49 - £8.99, See all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

 sweet wines
 

Blandy's Alvada 5-Year-Old Madeira, Portugal
Wine of the week 11/12/11. Notes of walnut, prune and rum-soaked raisins are joined by a twist of Seville orange. On the palate this has tea-stewed fruit compote richness and sweetness, with notes of chocolate and fudge, but again that thrilling tang of orange gives this real lift and real energy. More information on both wines and food matching suggestions in the video. The Alvada is £12.99 in Waitrose. Blandy's Duke of Clarence is £10.99-£11.99, see all stockists on
wine-searcher.com. (see full video review)

Lions de Suduirat, Sauternes 2009, France
Wine of the week 20/11/11. The nose is classic Sauternes with honey and glycerine, and beautiful barley sugar and fig, with fresh apricots too. On the palate it is absolutely delicious: it has weight and viscous texture, real sweetness but a lightness and finesse that finishes with dazzling agility. Food matching info and more background to this fascinating wine in the video. £14.99, Avery's.
(see full video review)

Torrebreva, Manzanilla Sherry, Spain
Wine of the week 21/08/11. Typically tangy, salt and ozone nose with ravishing freshness, some apple, citrus and dry, nut husk character. On the palate the texture is quite oily rich, but this has such precision of citrus and minerals that streaks across the palate with great intensity and length, that nutty richness just adding some breadth. Arresting and delicious stuff and what a handy half-bottle size too. More information and food match suggestions in the video. £6.95,
FromVineyardsDirect.com. (see full video review)

Value Wine Archives 2008-2009
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