Summer whites – If we ever get a summer !

Lasmoras&BonterraA nice chilled glass of white wine sitting outside enjoying the sunshine, not quite, this is England remember. In between dodging showers or being blown away in a mini hurricane we Brits brave the elements at any cost, it’s coming up to the middle of July and the weather still shows no sign of improving.

Two recent whites I’ve had on the rare good days are the Surprisingly good ‘Finca las Moras’ Pinot Grigio 2015 from the Co op and a Californian ‘Bonterra’ Chardonnay 2013 bought on offer from Waitrose.

Let me say I’m a big fan of wines from the Co op even my smaller local store has a fantastic selection often discounted and occasionally finding a real gem.

First the Argentinian  ‘Las Moras’, although far from being a gem it’s still a pretty good Pinot Grigio and I can’t remember the last time I said that even though I don’t generally drink a lot of it. Bought for £6.99 (regular price) from my local Co op, light golden straw colour in the glass with pronounced aromas of pears and tropical fruits. Pears again dominant in the taste with a hint of oranges and peaches, dry with a slightly sweet finish and utterly delicious.

A Californian Chardonnay next but a little bit more disappointing than the Pinot Grigio. Rich golden colour with an intense nose of Lemon curd and apple pie. On first sip it had a fairly creamy texture bit like vanilla custard, pineapple evident with a hefty dose of oak but the finish was slightly on the harsh side. I was a little let down by this it just seemed a bit unbalanced but by no means bad.

Left a little of the Chardonnay to taste 24hrs later and  it was much more approachable with that harshness on the finish softening giving a much better mouth-feel.

Looking out of the window as I’m typing this, yes, it’s still raining and blowing a gale.

7.5corks

Las Moras Pinot Grigio

My Rating 7.5/10 Corks

 

6corks

Bonterra Chardonnay

My Rating 6/10 Corks

Stonehaven Sauvignon Blanc 2015

Stonehaven SBSouth Africa 12.5%

I do enjoy Sauvignon Blanc although not as much as my wife and daughter and I do enjoy the zippy intense flavours of a New Zealand Marlborough ‘Sovee Bee’ (as my daughter calls it) but occasionally I just want something a bit less in your face.

I picked up this Stonehaven 2015 in my local Co op, any regular readers will know I’ve bought quite a few bottles of wine recently from this store and on the whole they have all been very good and this is no exception.

This bottle is from Cape point vineyards and made by Duncan Savage ( a Sauvignon Blanc specialist) situated near Cape town in South Africa.

In the glass, don’t expect aromas to leap out, this is fairly subdued although there is some grassiness. The taste is where this shines, it has an elegance about it, dry and crisp with grapefruit and limes but with  maybe a touch of mango but it’s that tropical edge that makes it shine and stand out as something slightly different.

For £5.99 (currently on offer from £8.99) this is a steal and I have since been back for more. If you have a Co op near you and you are into Sauvignon Blanc try it, for not a lot of money you may be pleasantly surprised.

8corks

 

My Rating 8/10 Corks

Co op £5.99 on offer (usually £8.99)

 

Your wine friendly local Co op

Linda Mora MalbecThe local Co op, great if you need a quick loaf of bread, some milk or butter but what about a nice red, a chilled white or a celebratory fizz. It may not be everyone’s first stop when looking for a bottle of wine although judging on what I have bought recently maybe it should be.

I regularly use my local Co op for those forgotten essentials and I regularly find myself heading down their wine aisle. It’s not a big shop by any means but it does have a brilliant selection of wines, anything from a cheap midweek quaffer’s to premium fine wines.

The other day I popped in for a French stick and came out with an Argentinian Malbec. It was the strangely named ‘Linda Mora’ which sounds more like a singer songwriter. The multiple award stickers plastered over the bottom of the bottle may have swayed my choice but as it turned out it was inspired and at a reasonably priced £6.99 a bottle.

Vibrant cherry red colour in the glass with heady aromas of ripe, rich dark plums, raspberries vanilla and smoke. On first sip it was quite sweet bordering on being jammy with the dark plummy fruits dominant, there was a touch of cinnamon and vanilla. There were tannins but fairly mild and a lovely smokiness about it.

Maybe be a bit of a fruit bomb to some but I really enjoyed it with my burger and chips and for £6.99 I would say good value, they also had a Linda Mora Shiraz which I will be going back for at some time.

Coop wines1Check back to one of my previous posts about another couple of delicious Co op reds which I thoroughly enjoyed on the recommendation of Wine Writer Jamie Goode…Co op Double

So next time you need some butter or a loaf of bread and you have a Co op near you grab a bottle as well you may be pleasantly surprised.

7.5corks

 

My rating 7.5/10 corks

 

Fantastic Co-op double

Coop wines1We have a small store close by which we use for bread, milk and the odd things we forgot in our main weekly shop. I always wander down their wine section  and occasionally buy the odd bottle of wine which on the whole, so far, have all been pretty good.

I used to get some nice bargains in my local Co op on some of the better quality wines sometimes even getting them for less than half price but recently they seemed to have become a little more savvy in their pricing now only offering one or two pounds discount, still a discount is a discount.

Spotted these two wines after a little prompt on Wine writer Jamie Goode’s blog in his article about the latest Co op press tasting where he listed around 7, in his words ‘Nice affordable wines’.

Firstly the Cotes du Rhone ‘La Grange St. Martin’ 2014. This had a fairly muted nose but there was some berries and a hint of smoke. The taste is where this really shone, fresh cherries, bramble fruit, bright acidity, ash, white peppery spice and a savoury finish. Held up well on second day showing more savouriness, an altogether delicious bottle for £6.99.

Secondly the Trapiche Pure Malbec 2014, this is an unoaked Malbec hence ‘Pure’ on the label. Shared this bottle with family and friend. Very dark in colour, blackberries, blackcurrants and dark cherries on the nose. The first sip hits you like a sledgehammer, intense fruit, dry, mild dusty tannins but it’s the cherries that really come through and caused one of our tasters to cry out ‘Wow ! that’s really fruity, very nice !’ and it was, hence the bottle emptied pretty quickly. A little more expensive at £8.99 but worth every penny.

La Grange St. Martin – Cotes du Rhone 2014

8corks

My Rating 8/10 Corks    Co op £6.99

 

Trapiche Pure Malbec 2014

8corks

My Rating 8/10 Corks    Co op £8.99