Had a nice time at the Waitrose (UK supermarket) press tasting today, held at their cookery school adjoining the Finchley Road branch. I’m always glad to come away with a sheath of recommendations for my Sunday Express column.
Waitrose have some fabulous wines. They also have a few shockers, but I guess this is driven by their commercial need to supply familiar brands along with more interesting wines. What were they showing the Mondavi Woodbridge wines for? Or the Kumala red? But I mustn’t be too critical: their range knocks the other supermarkets into touch.
Now I didn’t taste as many of the wines as I’d have liked. I was under time constraints, and their were 240 wines on show. But I tasted plenty of good-uns. Very interested to see the wonderful Clonakilla Hilltops Shiraz 2009 (£17.99) which I’m strongly tempted to buy. I also liked the biodynamic Moonvine red from Walter Clappis in the McLaren Vale, which overdelivers for £9.99. Other highlights include the Rustenberg Chardonnay (£12.49), and the wonderful Schubert Pinot Noir Block B from New Zealand’s Martinborough region (£29.50).
At the value end, I really liked the Zalze Shiraz/Mourvedre/Viognier 2010 from South Africa – yours for just £6.99.