I was surprised and very honoured to be chosen as Tesco Wine Community's Member of the Month. The Wine Community is a great place where I have discovered new wines; found out interesting and important 'wine facts'; and chatted with like-minded wine lovers. I certainly have many more wines on my ‘to taste’ list now and more seem to be on there every day.
My case of new wines arrived home for me and hubby (well two palettes are better than one) to smell, taste and opinionate over. It was quite a challenge - but we did our best. Our Tesco case was the Fine Dining Dozen, a mixed case containing:
Hubby and I settled down after dinner for this one; note book at the ready. We were very methodical looking at the colour – dark solid red, nose – fruity, dark cherries with a hint of spice, and finally taste – medium bodied with plums, light tannin with a spicy end. It lingered long in the mouth.
Just for fun we then checked the back of the bottle – ‘aroma of dark berry fruits combined with ripe plum flavours, touch of spice, subtle hint of oak and a smooth lingering finish’. Matched !!
We enjoyed this unaccompanied for a cosy night in and we were very chuffed both with the wine and our tasting ability – so which one next!
A totally opposite tasting moment for this – before dinner on Mothering Sunday. We were actually watching the 6 Nations, I’m not sure it fits the rugby image but it is a very good sparkler and a perfect treat for ‘Mum’.
The glass was filled with an array of small bubbles; I was transfixed watching their rapid ascent. The wine had a golden colour with bright yellow flashes catching the light. Its warming biscuit nose was not at all overpowering and lead to a very light fruit taste – white grapes, honeydew melons. This sparkler was not at all acidy or gaseous; the crisp finish was not too dry. It could have been a little heavier in taste but all told a very enjoyable fizz.
Stellenbosch 2012 Sauvignon Blanc (South Africa
We probably broke all the rules with this one – although we did chill it first. We did pair it with a meal – chip shop fish and chips!
I love sauvignon blanc so from the case this was one I was looking forward to. It’s clear pale colour in the glass lead to the recognisable kiwi, melon, gooseberry fragrance of SB. It had a young taste of sharp gooseberries which were crisp but a little dry with slight undertone bubbles. Its finish was quite dry and tangy for an SB...
... but with the oily fish and chips it was delicious. I’m not sure I would drink this unaccompanied as it is a little dry as a sauvignon blanc but my last glass did help me finish my March project!
Gloriosa Rioja 2007 (Spain)
This one filled me with dread – mine and hubby’s previous experiences with rioja have lead us to decide they are not for us. However if a job has to be done!
I cooked a Mexcian meal to accompany the Gloriosa – spicy chicken fajitas, refried beans, guacamole, nachos with cheese... and it was amazing. We were both very, very surprised and loved this deep rich red wine; the colour was so deep you couldn’t see through the glass.
Its nose was quite light, nothing really noticeable but its taste was superb; a deep red berry taste without being fruity, a hint of vanilla and maybe cinnamon. It was lightly oaked which explained the lightness of tannin (our usual put off in rioja). One thing for sure it definitely warmed our insides on the way down and was a superb match to our spicy dinner.
This wine totally changed our opinion of rioja, and will be on our wine list for future enjoyment – maybe unaccompanied next time on a summer’s evening in the garden.
Sister's Run 2008 Merlot (Australia)
Hubby was really looking forward to this as merlot is one of his favourite grape varieties having many holidays in the Languedoc area of France. However an Australian merlot was a newbie for us, we usually choose a shiraz from Oz.
This time I cooked a chicken and chorizo pasta dish – not sure how that fits with Oz but it certainly matched the wine. The Sister’s Run nose was very full – plums, log fires, rubber, tarmac, even hints of whisky – with a dark red colour with scarlet highlights.
Warm black cherries, plums and grapes filled our mouths with a slight hint of oak, followed by a light spice and a very nice warming feeling. Our smiles said it all – we were back in France (sorry Oz) but this Sister’s Run brought back many warm sunny memories. It’s a glorious wine which is now also in our wine list.
... and so finally to our last bottle of the Fine Dining Dozen and I have just realised we didn’t really match it to fine dining. It is a great collection though giving so much variety that there is a wine for dinner or not!
Mar del Sur 2011 Sauvignon Blanc (Chile)
This is another sauvignon blanc, a perfect final bottle for me. We had the wine chill not with a main meal but with some brie and white grapes.
It had a very crisp look in the glass with a pale cream colour. A rush of sweet apple blossoms and melons hit our noses as this wine was very fragranced. The apples were the main fruit of its delicious taste with slight bubbles in the after taste. It is a crisp sauvignon blanc with a hint of lemon in the after taste.
This is my style of sauvignon blanc and although we chose the wine in no particular order it was the perfect finish for me.
All the Fine Dining Dozen were great wines – we didn’t dislike any although we did have two favourites, Glorisa and Mar del Sur. It’s been great fun being Member of the Month and I hope our wine adventure has given you some ideas – our wine list certainly has some new additions.