I’m on one of those diets that allows you to eat lots of meat, pasta and rice. I’m also allowed limited ‘treats’ and mine’s a four letter word. Wine. A wine diet.
I’m not really on a wine diet. I’m on a diet with glasses of wine. But I guess you know what I mean. Dieting and wine isn’t the best combo, but on our mutual journey of discovering wine I still have to be a passenger information service. It’s my duty to keep on trucking.
Now then, if you’re calorie conscious, here’s a thought.
A large glass of 13% abv wine (250ml) could be as much as 228 calories. If you can’t visualise 250ml, it’s a third of a bottle. That’s an eek! and worth remembering when you glug wine into a glass after a long day at work.
Think on. The NHS says the average wine drinker takes in about 2,000 calories in alcohol a month; and drinking five pints of beer a week adds up to 44,2000 calories a year. To check out calories of your favourite tipple, the NHS has some basic guidance here.
Here’s some wines I sampled with my diet meals. They’re NOT low-calorie wines. I refuse to drink faddy low-calorie wines.
My heart sinks. Where’s the ‘treat’ in that? Enjoy nice wines, I say, just enjoy them with one sensible eye on the calories.
My wine diet reds:
Château Lalande AOP Cabardès 2013 (13% abv £6.99 selected Co-op stores) This red from the south of France is a blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, syrah and grenache. On the nose there’s plum and cherry fruits, a brush of lavender, a dabble with kirsch. Vanilla? Yes lots of it. It’s a nice drop of red but the aromas win out as in the mouth the spice and acidity zip past the fruit flavours.
(My slimmie wine-match meal was schezuan pepper steak with couscous – pictured at the top of this blog with baked sweet potato strips.)
Château Pey la Tour Réserve, Bordeaux Supérieur (14% abv, £11.50 www.thewinesociety.com) A deep ruby red wine from Entre Deuxs Mers, it’s a typical Bordeaux blend, with merlot leading from the front with a small amount of cabernet franc and cabernet sauvignon. This réserve wine is aged in oak for 12 months, some of it new, which adds to the flavour intensity. Aromas of fresh plums, splintered wood and vanilla don’t dilly and dally; they have you hooked from the off, before leading you into soft flavours of ripe fruits with spicy flecks.
(My slimmie wine-match meal was lamb, baked with garlic, rosemary, leek and potatoes.)
My wine diet whites:
Reuilly Cuvée Nathalie 2014 (12.5% abv Majestic, £11.99 or £9.99 in a Buy Six deal) I just so loved this wine. This is a sauvignon blanc from Reuilly in the Loire and is made by Nathalie Lafond who took over the vineyard from her father. Sauvignon blanc sings here, but it’s not belting out signature tunes on full blast like some New World sauv blancs. The wine has lime and citrus oozing out of the glass, with a peep of apricots. Crisp citrus fruits water the palate with an upright backbone of minerality. Delicious.
(My slimmie wine-match meal was baked cod with pea risotto.)
Most Wanted Sauvignon Blanc (12% abv RRP £8.99, Nisa, Booths, McColls and www.tesco.com) The team from Most Wanted has a vision to “get everyone to enjoy the world’s most wanted wines” at decent prices. This sauvignon blanc is from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, and zipped and zinged as these NZ sauv blancs tend to do, with tropical fruits weaving in and out of the senses alongside citrus. It’s not an in-your-face sauv blanc which is good if you don’t like your wines like that.
(My slimmie wine-match meal was spicy marinaded chicken with salad.)
Wine reviews first published in Raise a Glass, Trinity Mirror regionals September 2016