From the archives
My 25 top picks from Sainsbury’s current 25% off deal (May 2016)
The run up to the spring bank holiday is always a good time to buy wine with supermarkets intent on getting us to stock up for our summer drinking.
Sainsbury’s and Tesco are first off the block this week with Sainsbury’s having the better selection at the moment. (Tesco didn’t even have a press tasting this spring)
Usual rules and warnings: you have to buy six bottles, the deal doesn’t apply in Scotland, check the vintages which may not be the same as the ones I’m recommending and not all branches will carry all wines.
The offer lasts until Sunday June 5th.
Taste the Difference Godello 2015 on offer at £7 so down to £5.25 on this deal STAR BUY
Godello is the new …. chardonnay/albarino/takeyourpick. It’s made up in the north of Spain in the Bierzo region and is a really delicious lush but not too overpowering white. Would be lovely with salmon.
Picpoul l’Ormarine 2015 £8 down to £6
There’s a lot of Picpoul around, not all of it good but this is a personal favourite I often buy when I’m down in the Languedoc. Fresh, crisp and dry it’s a perfect match for fresh shellfish like oysters and crab.
Taste the Difference Pouilly-Fumé 2015 £12 down to £9
Pouilly Fumé is always a pound or two cheaper than Sancerre but every bit as good, if not better. This is drinking well now but will be even better in 3-4 months. Again shellfish would be a good pairing
Taste the Difference Languedoc Blanc 2015 On offer at £6 so down £4.50 on this deal
I invariably include this full-flavoured white from Jean-Claude Mas in my selection - it’s just so reliable. Think roast or grilled chicken and pork
Elegant Frog Viognier 2015 on offer at £6.50 so down to £4.88 on this deal.
Hate the name and the label but you can’t fault the contents - a really pukka creamy viognier that would be perfect with a korma or other gently spiced Indian food
Taste the Difference Verdicchio Classico 2015 on offer at £6 so down to £4.50 on this deal
Ignore the slightly naff, curvy (but traditional) bottle, this is much more interesting than most Italian whites and will go with all kinds of Italian veggie and seafood dishes
Taste the Difference Gruner Veltliner 2015 £8 down to £6
Another reliable stalwart this peppery white is a really versatile match with everything from smoked fish to Vietnamese food
Zalze Reserve Chenin Blanc 2015 on offer at £7.50 and down to £5.63 on this deal
If you like oaked chardonnays you’ll love this lush, chenin blanc which will work with similar dishes (i.e. chicken, creamy sauces etc). I wouldn’t pay £10 (the normal price) for it but it’s terrific value at £5.63
Sainsbury’s has got a massive push on rosé at the moment - and an above average range from which I’d pick these:
Taste the Difference Vinedos Barrihuelo Rioja Rosado 2015 on offer at £6, so down to £4.50 on this deal STAR BUY
Darker and stronger than most of the baby-pink rosés around but none the worse for that. A great barbecue rosé
Taste the Difference Bordeaux Rosé 2015 on offer at £6 so down to £4.50 on this deal
Made in the Provence style - pale and pretty. Good summer evening drinking with a plate of nibbles
Baron Gassier Sainte Victoire 2015 £10 down to £7.50
Pale, elegant and creamy (it contains 18% white wine grapes) this is a really smart Provencal rosé. Perfect for a posh picnic
Taste the Difference Conegliano Prosecco Superiore 2015 already on promotion at £7.50 so £5.62 on this offer
One of the best supermarket proseccos. If you’re a fan you’d be mad not to snap it up
Cordoniu Cuvée Barcelona Brut on offer at £10 so down to £7.50 on this deal STAR BUY
Much, much better than most sub-£10 proseccos, including the one above. Lovely bottle too. Good bet for a wedding.
Winemakers’ Selection Blanc de Blancs Brut £20 down to £15
Always a good buy, especially at this price. Made by the very competent house of Duval-Leroy. (The Blanc de Noirs is cheaper currently but not showing particularly well the other day I thought)
Winemakers’ Selection Brut Rosé £23 down to £17.25
Very pretty pale delicate rosé champagne. Not cheap but good value
Bouchard Ainé et Fils Pinot Noir £7.50 down to £5.63.
Impressive pinot from well known negociant unusually sourced from fruit from all over France. Better than most cheap red burgundy. Serve with usual pinot noir suspects
Taste the Difference Languedoc Red 2015 £7 down to £5.25
The red counterpart of the white above. Generous, beefy but not over-extracted. Perfect for sausages with lentils, beef stews or even a BBQ
Taste the Difference Gigondas 2013 £13 down to £9.75 STAR BUY
If you like Chateauneuf-du-Pape you’ll love this very similar but better-priced red from the nearby appellation of Gigondas. Absolutely looks the part too. Think beef.
Taste the Difference Graciano 2014 on offer at £6 so down to £4.50 with this deal
This looks - and tastes - like a young rioja but in fact comes from the less prestigious area of La Mancha which makes it woefully underpriced. Take advantage and drink with roast or grilled lamb. Or even a barbecue
Taste the Difference Douro 2014 £8 down to £6
A big rich spicy red made from the same grape varieties as port. Drink with big beefy dishes including steak.
Taste the Difference Aconcagua Chilean Pinot Noir 2015 on offer at £7 so down to £5.25 on this deal
Another wine I always seem to end up recommending - a really delicious silky, raspberry-scented pinot at a silly price. A winner with duck.
L’Avenir Pinotage 2015 on offer at £6.50 so down to £4.88 on this deal
Surprisingly elegant for pinotage which can be a bit of a bruiser this shows more of its pinot roots. Not too wimpy to serve with a barbecue though - would be good with grilled lamb or tuna
Graffigna Centenario Reserve Malbec 2014 on offer at £7.50 so down to £5.63 on this deal
If you like big lush ripe malbecs this has your name ALL over it. Steak, obviously.
Taste the Difference Fino Sherry £8 down to £6 for 50cl
Sainsbury’s TTD sherries are made by the respected house of Lustau and are top class. This is a searingly dry fino that needs food (especially jamon) to show at its best. Pop it in the fridge before drinking.
Taste the Difference 12 y.o. Amontillado Sherry £8 down to 6 for 50cl
Even more delicious, if anything. Gorgeously rich and nutty. Very good with cheese
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