This Week's Wine - No.1

Le Fleur Bleu from M&S

Wine 1

Le Fleur Bleu 1.5L 12% abv  £11  Bag

The packaging, simplicity of use and convenience of this product, for that is what it is, is to be commended. Light and easy to carry for picnics, festivals and the Tour de France!

The contents are however less exciting. A blend of Grenache Blanc and Clairette, it is low on fruit, acidity and freshness, in fact it has no discernible character and should be consumed exceedingly well chilled.

Should one do this, it is acceptable plonk, not for the discerning, my recommendation would be to add cassis!

STAR RATING out of 10

Quality  3     Value 5


Other reviews in This Week's Wine series here.



This Week's Wine - No.5

Walter 2012 Riesling Trocken

Walter Riesling

Reasons for Riesling

In the UK, despite numerous promotions, tastings and festivals, Riesling, from where ever it originates, is still a tough sell.  

The pioneer and still the best source of dry German Rieslings is The Winery, 4 Clifton Road, Maida Vale, London W91SS whence this wine originates.

This 2012 Walter Mosel Riesling Trocken  is vibrant, zesty, citrussy and pure.  Slightly atypical of Mosel Riesling, in that it packs quite a punch making it suitable for a variety of oily fish and creamy dishes. Gratin Dauphinoise with a green salad a la Rick Stein appeals to me right now!  

Vital Statistics
Price £9.99
Alcohol  12%
RDC rating
Quality 8
Value 9

Other reviews in This Week's Wine series here.



This Week's Wine - No.4

La Gitana Manzanilla from Waitrose

La Gitana

LA GITANA MANZANILLA - Waitrose 15% abv £8.50

Those of us of a certain age may remember the slogan for a certain low alcohol beverage being “so light, so dry, so buy some!"
Waitrose are offering 75cl of La Gitana Manzanilla at a spankingly good £8.50 from £10 and I recommend that you do!

Manzanilla is a Fino Sherry that comes from the village of Sanlucar de Barrameda.  It has a fresh apple skin, salty aroma, clean as a whistle, dry and sappy.  At 15% abv, low for a sherry, don’t think of it as only an aperitif. Though it does that job admirably, try drinking it throughout the meal with some poached fish or chicken.



Other reviews in the This Week's Wine series here


This Week's Wine - No.3

Manz Platonico from Oddbins


Portuguese MANZ PLATONICO - Oddbins  13% alc. £10.00


On opening, crunchy, vibrant cherry fruit , tangy, blood orange mouth watering fruit.  Returning to it an hour later softer aromas of mulberries, violets and cocoa, warm, rich and elegant on the palate. Take your pick, but either way, very good indeed.

Refreshingly, exactly £10, certainly an excellent autumn buy.



Other reviews in the This Week's Wine series here


This Week's Wine - No.6

Rudolph's Red

Petri Pinot Noir

Petri Pinot Noir


A light and bright in colour German Pinot Noir, initially with an attractive slight spritz. Vibrant, fresh and balanced red fruits and acidity. A lovely alternative to red burgundy for Christmas Fayre and as I was drinking it, I was thinking how great this would be with left overs, always the best part of Christmas!


£10.95 Lea & Sandeman.


Other reviews in This Week's Wine series here.



This Week's Wine - No.2

Waitrose Chilean Sauvignon Blanc Reserva 2013

Waitrose Sauvignon Blanc

Waitrose Chilean Sauvignon Blanc Reserva 2013 £7.99

Distinctly indistinctive  

If I had tasted this wine blind, I think I would have been able to pick it out as Sauvignon Blanc, but only just.  Formulaic, green apples, clean with a gentle tropical, sugary finish, therefore, easy to drink well chilled. Nothing for New Zealand to worry about here!

Score out of 10

Quality  5
Value  6.5


Other reviews in the This Week's Wine series here.



From the back of the shelf: Cookbook Quote No. 3


Stretching a point, whilst this isn't a cookbook quote, it is an ode to wine and so falls into our wider sphere of interest…

For 50p I picked up this slim volume, The Taste of Kinloch,  commemorating a century of trading in wines and spirits of Messrs Charles Kinloch (1861-1961).  A little googling reveals that Charles Kinloch merged with Courage in 1957:

"One of the largest wines and spirits businesses in Britain, Charles Kinloch & Company Limited, joined the Courage Group in 1957 bringing with it a history of wine trading going back 100 years. This firm was stocking some 4,000 lines of wines and spirits, and, apart from its wholesale and retail trade, supplied outlets throughout Britain"

Now, here's the funny thing:  nowhere have I found a mention of the delightful rhyming Foreword by Sir Alan Herbert (aka A.P. Herbert, 1890-1971, humorist, author, MP and law reform activist).   Here it is.


Please send in any suggestions for a quote to add to this embryonic collection, using the comments or emailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Come on, you must have something from the back of the shelf!


This Week's Wine - No.7

Chilean Dessert Wine

Chilean Dessert Wine

Sainsbury's Mayu Reserva Syrah 2009

Despite being on the southern edge of the Atacama, 530km north of Santiago,  the Valle de Elqui is a refreshingly “cool climate” region, benefitting from the steep slopes of the Andes and the cooling Pacific breezes.  They say on the Wines of Chile website, the region is perfect for Syrah and on this evidence,  I concur.
Sainsbury’s MAYU RESERVA SYRAH 2009 is packed with vibrant damson fruit that is spicy, peppery and rich. It has freshness, length and some bottle age complexity. A lot of bang for your peso!

Vital statistics

Alcohol 14%
Price  £10.00 on offer £8.50
Value  9
RDC rating 8.5



Another Glass, Please - no. 2


Court Garden

Court Garden


 It wasn’t my intention to review another sparkling wine quite so soon but when something so special, so impressive and, frankly, so much of the moment comes along it would be a crime to let it pass....

Read on

A new series by Richard Dudley Craig

Another Glass, Please - no. 4


Vouvray-Sec-2016 main

Richard Dudley Craig declares this Vouvray Sec to be a "smashing summer wine". 

Read on...