Frappato Syrah Terre Siciliane 2018

Passo Mastro Frappato Syrah Terre Siciliane 2018, 14%, Italy (£6.99, Lidl, *from 21st November 2019) This cheery, upbeat Italian red is a blend of Frappato with Syrah from Sicily. It was one of the better value wines on show among the 30-odd Lidl wines at this tasting – though...

Ventoux 2017 Remy Ferbras

Ventoux 2017 Rémy Ferbras, France, 14% (£8.79, Waitrose) How’s about this, then? A mini Châteauneuf-du-Pape under a tenner. A fine way to warm the cockles and delight the taste buds during the winter season ahead. It’s a blend of mainly Grenache with 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, grown on...

Chateau Tayet 2015 magnum

Château Tayet Cuvée Prestige Bordeaux Supérieur 2015, France (£38.50, Private Cellar) Last week saw The Bunch’s annual tasting at which Private Cellar (new to the group) showed this magnum of Château Tayet. It's a blend of 55% Merlot with 25% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Petit Verdot, described as...

Salicornia Dao Reserva 2016

Salicornia Dão Reserva 2016, 13%, Portugal (£6.99, Aldi) This was my pick of the bunch from a recent Aldi tasting (Sept 2019). As the nights draw in and we all start to crave characterful, comforting reds to sink into, this one ticks all the boxes.  It’s Portuguese (made from...

Louis Guntrum Pinot Noir 2017

Louis Guntrum Pinot Noir 2017, 13.5%, Rheinhessen, Germany (£13.99 down to £10.49 until 16.7.2019, Waitrose Cellar) Is Pinot Noir the wine lover's ultimate grape?  And, if so, where do you find great value bottles of the same? A short while ago, I posed these questions on social media.  In answer...

Nero Oro Appassimento 2017

Nero Oro Appassimento 2017, 14%, Sicily, Italy (£8.99, Majestic) For those who like their reds a bit smoother and richer, this is for you. It makes a really versatile drinking partner for many dishes – partly because the appassimento (drying the grapes) gives a bit of richness and...

Naoussa Single Vineyard Xinomavro 2016

Naoussa Single Vineyard Xinomavro 2016, Apostolos Thymiopolous 13.5%, Greece (£15.50, The Wine Society) The Greek grape variety Xinomavro literally translates as ‘sour black’. So this gives you some idea of the kind of punch it can pack. (Susie describes it as, ‘like Nebbiolo on speed’.) This rendition is pretty...

Mas Martinet Bru 2016

Mas Martinet Bru 2016, 14.5%, Priorato, Spain ($39, €18-22, £18.68 Justerini & Brooks) Catalonia is one of our favourite wine regions on the planet. It’s such a beautiful part of the world. Amazing food and wine. Wonderful people. A Mediterranean coastline that veers from the tourisy to the...

Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1976

Robert Mondavi Winery Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1976, Oakville, California, 13% (Not commercially available) California’s Mondavi Winery is owned by Constellation Brands, a principal supporter of the Institute of Masters of Wine and sponsor of the IMW’s Robert Mondavi Winery Award. This award is given each year to...