IT’S Easter, time to relax. Four days off – and I’m ducking airborne corks flying at me from those of you still working.
Sorry and all that. For the rest of us, what shall we do with our time? Well this wine column isn’t called a wine column for nothing – here’s ideas from around some of the supermarkets to suit the four-day break. (Oops, I’m sidestepping hurtling corks again).
Good Friday. A day for wine with fish
Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Albarino (£7.99) is a white wine from the north west coast of Spain. Albarino – have I said this before? – is one of my favourite grapes at the moment. It has a natural high acidity, is peachy-perfect and works brilliantly with fish.
Château de la Gravelle Muscadet Sévre et Maine sur Lie 2011, (Marks & Spencer, £7.99) sets off fish perfectly. It comes from the Loire near to the Atlantic and is bottled straight off its lees. This adds subtle creaminess to grapey-freshness. It has nuttiness on the nose and I came down in favour of a newly-cracked brazil nut.
From the other end of the Loire valley comes Calvet Sancerre (on offer for £9.99 from £12.99 at Morrisons). If you don’t know, then it’s worth knowing, that Sancerre is made from sauvignon blanc. If you like SB, then why not ring the changes.
Saturday: White wine with friends
For a crowd pleaser, think bubbles. Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Prosecco 75cl is reduced from £9.99 down to £7.49 (until April 9) and at Tesco, Finest Vintage Cava 2010 is reduced to £7.49 (until April 23).
If you want a white with a little pear and peachy depth then head back to north west Spain for Mara Martin Godello (Morrisons, RRP £10.99).
But for a crisper white, and something lighter on the pocket, then Asda’s Wine Selection Margaret River Semillon Sauvignon Blanc is reduced to £4.48. It might not over-excite the tastebuds, but this blend is an uncomplicated citrus affair with “caught you out” 12.5% abv.
Easter Sunday: Red wine for a meal with family
Asda’s Extra Special Pinot Noir (£10.48) is light ruby with aromas of cherries and herbal earthiness; it has low tannins with a taste of “medicine-bottle” cherries and pepper pecks with a lift of acidity.
Also from Asda is Extra Special Vignes Citadelle Cotes du Bourg a Bordeaux wine which has soft, supple, red fruits tempting on the nose and in the mouth. A good buy for £7.25.
Marquès del Romeral Reserva Rioja 2007, (M&S, £10.99) would be a perfect match for lamb. Tempranillo leads the way in a three-grape blend in this delightful rioja. Fruit tempts, while both vanilla and a hint of toast tease. If you don’t have lamb, just have the wine.
Easter Monday: A low alcohol treat as it’s back to work next day
A few columns ago I mentioned Brachetto d’Acqui, a sparkling red from Italy – Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Brachetto d’Acqui DOCG (£6.20) is a fruity treat at just 5% alcohol. Love it.
Jacob’s Creek Sparkling Moscato White (9%) is £6 in Asda and has strong tropical aromas though one honeysuckled glass is usually enough for me. From M&S, Giardini Veneto Tai Pinot Grigio 2011, £6.49 (9.5%) is what it says on the vin – a pinot grigio. It’s pleasant and lemony light for a quiet evening ahead of an early morning start.
This column first appeared in the Liverpool Post on March 30 2013