Money’s tight for most of us at the moment, with many people choosing to stay in rather than spending money in bars and restaurants at the weekend.
Even supermarket wine can be on the pricey side, though, and it’s not much fun sipping a mediocre £7 bottle of wine and feeling you’ve been short-changed when you’re already trying to be thrifty.
Like many people, I’ve thus far pretty much ignored my local Aldi. Yeah, sometimes I pop in for the odd good-value store-cupboard buy, but I’ve never even looked at the wine aisle until now.
Last week, I realised I’ve been a bit of a div. A quick glance at the wine cellar section of the Aldi website shows you they have IWC/Decanter Awards medal-winners galore on their shelves, and at less than a fiver for most bottles it’s well worth a try.
Here are our picks of the range. In honour of the Olympics, we’re going to award them medals in ascending order…
Bronze: Toro Loco Rosé,
£3.59 per bottle
A bronze winner at this year’s IWSC, we were pretty hopeful about this one. Unfortunately, it didn’t really live up to expectations – it was alright, but nothing great. It had a slight metally finish and not much going on, but there were some pleasant cherry whiffs and flavours. Not bad for the price, and greatly improved after twenty minutes in the air (why not try one of the decanters we found?)
Silver: Vina Decana Crianza,
£4.19 per bottle
Another big winner, this is a Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon blend. Again, this benefited from some oxygen, but once opened up it was decidedly moreish: sweet spice and red fruit flavour make this a warming treat. Excellent value.
Gold: Henri di Lorgere Macon Villages,
£4.99 per bottle
One of the most heavily-awarded wines in the range, it’s simply astounding this is less than a fiver. We found this pleasant immediately as you open the bottle, but like the others it flowered with some time to breath. Crisp, pear-driven and round, this also has great minerality and a hint of oak. A great level of complexity for the price, and a pleasant food accompaniment too. You could easily pay £3 more for something similar in other supermarkets.