Mostly wine but occasionally beer, whisky, gin and other drinks that I think represent really good value. Sometimes because they're on promotion, at other times because they're exceptional quality.
Since we’re incarcerated for the forseeable future with only a daily walk as light relief it struck me we need to go back to the days when people carried a hipflask of something warm and sustaining, particularly given the current icy conditions.
I was recently sent six festive bottles that Asda has on promotion at the moment - well known classics at substantial reductions with some medal-winners among them (though it’s not clear whether these awards apply to the current vintage).
Sainsbury’s hasn’t held a press tasting this year so I’m not totally up to speed on their range but here are some wines I’ve enjoyed in the past and which are currently on a 25% off six bottles deal until tomorrow night (December 13th 2020)
Waitrose is running its annual 10 wines under £10 offer until December 16th. All are good reductions but, in my view, having tasted them, some are better than others. Here’s what I’d go for, assuming they’re in stock - some are already out of stock online
Tesco has 25% off six bottles of wine running through until December 1st 2020, a deal it would be worth taking advantage of if you’re stocking up for Christmas. (Note though that the offer does not apply to Tesco Express or branches in Scotland so check the exclusions - and the vintages. I'm only recommending ones I've recently tasted.)
You may remember a while back I recommended a couple of wines from Berkmann Cellars who were selling wine to raise money for the hospitality industry. Well, they’re doing it again during the current lockdown and sent me a couple of wines from their range to try.
Waitrose has got one of its 25% off 6 bottle deals - probably the last before Christmas. While it’s not somewhere you would automatically head for a bargain it does bring a substantial amount of their range down under £10 (though I’ve included one that’s just over)
Finding bottles of sparkling wine under £10 that are not prosecco is increasingly hard so snap up this very attractive Pere Ventura Cava which Waitrose is selling (In larger stores and online) at an introductory price of £9.69 until next Tuesday instead of its regular price of £12.99.
Aldi held their (socially distanced) autumn wine tasting in London the other week. As usual there were some really good buys, mostly under £7 with a couple of more expensive ones that are well worth the money. These were my standout buys.
Marks & Spencer might not be the first place you think of looking for a wine bargain but their Terrenal garnacha from the Cariñena region of Spain is an absolute steal.
What to make of Heston’s Lazy Sunshine Gin, his latest collaboration with Waitrose?
The Languedoc probably isn’t the first place you think to look for malbec and if you’re in love with the seductively, lush Argentinian style you may even be a touch disappointed but as someone who sometimes finds new world malbec a bit too full on this Malbec d'Hervé is right up my street.
It’s always a thrill to come across a grape variety you don’t know, especially from an area with which you’re fairly familiar and when it adds another dimension to the wines already on offer there.
The South African wine industry has had a torrid 2020 so far with a ban on exports back in April and now a ban for the second time on domestic sales, citing the pressure that hospitals are under dealing with the high levels of alcohol abuse on top of the COVID crisis.
If you're looking for a crisp dry wine to drink with seafood muscadet fits the bill perfectly.
There’s so much English fizz around now it takes something special to make them stand out. These two All Angels wines, have the advantage, for a start, of coming from Berkshire, a county which is not as well known for its wines as more southerly counties such as Hampshire, Sussex and Kent.
It may be so-called flaming June but the weather is anything but summery this weekend so I’m abandoning rosé for the time being and thinking about red.
Anyone who doubts the value of being on Twitter - as I do myself from time to time - should factor in the bonus of having access to insider knowledge.
As I'm sure you know the hospitality industry - i.e. restaurants, pubs and hotels - is in dire straits with no clear idea when businesses can reopen or even if they’ll be viable if they do.
With VE day coming up on Friday you may have already made plans for what you’re going to eat and drink which could well be home-grown, UK produced, wine, beer or cider.