Tuesday, 23 September 2014

A Pair of Bargains or Not?

I was reading an article the other day about the state of the UK wine trade and one of the stats which still amazes me is that the average bottle price in the UK is £5.27, which once you've take the VAT and duty out of the price, the cost of the wine, bottle, shipping, labelling and retailer profit is £2.34. This to me is just amazing, the once you take out the other costs, the wine inside the bottle is costing you anywhere between 50 - 60 pence, which when you think about it is not a lot, and also makes me wonder is it any good?

So with this in mind I popped down to my local supermarket to see what they had around this price, also remembering about the articles earlier this year with regards to so called special offer wines, that aren't really that good an offer! And I found quite a few around this price from all over the world, but decided on two a Tempranillo/Grenache blend from Spain and a Petit Verdot from South Australia;

2007 Marques de Carano Gran Reserva

Having a quick scan of the back label the first bit of information you see is that this wine hails from the Carinena region in north west Spain. Carinena is one of the oldest protected DO's (Denominacion de Origen) and was created in 1932, it is also acknowledged as the source of the French Carignan grape, which is still grown in the region and is better known as Mazuelo. The other bit of useful information apart from some information about the region is that it is aged for at least 24 months in American oak. Adding in the age I was expecting quite a lot from this wine, even more so as it's original price was £10.99 but it was on a better than half price offer for £5.

In the glass it had a deep inky purple colour, with pronounced aromas of dark fruit, cherries blackberries with a touch of sweet spice namely clove and cinnamon. On the palate you got the fruit and spice coming through, unfortunately it had a large amount of bitter, green tannins which were not enjoyable and made this a very disappointing glass of wine, and one I wouldn't recommend.

2013 Wine Makers Selection Petit Verdot by Sainsbury's

Petit Verdot is not something you tend to see a lot of as a single varietal, it's mainly used in blends and originates from Bordeaux in France, the grapes for this wine come from south Australia.

In the glass it had a bright ruby red colour, with aromas of red berries, predominately cherry with a touch of graphite (pencil lead) and violet hue's coming through, these all came through on the palate and combined with plenty of soft juicy tannins. It had a refreshing acidity which bought the flavours and tannins together perfectly. Again this bottle cost me £5 and I really enjoyed it, and would definitely recommend it even more so when you consider the price.

Considering what I was looking for when I purchased these two bottles, I don't think I did too badly, yes one I wouldn't recommend and but one I definitely would!

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