Looking like a bottle found under a park bench this unusually packaged wine is certainly quirky and definitely stands out on the supermarket shelf but is it any good?
As some of my regular readers may know I belong to a small wine circle called Cuvée Reserve where once a month one of our members select a wine of the month which is easily accessible and under £10 for us all to review. This particular bottle is our March selection and is currently priced at £5.50 from Asda.
Farmers of wine is from the Puglia Region of Italy, a blend of Negroamaro, Zinfandel, locally known as Primitivo, Merlot and Nero d’Avola.
Ok, going back to my first question, is it any good?, for me for the price it’s a resounding yes!
This comes with a cork and has a very intense dark garnet like colour when poured. The nose is fairly muted although there is a hint of ripe dark plums and cherries. The first mouthful has those plums and cherries bursting with juiciness followed by a little dark chocolate. Slightly on the jammy side but not over the top, subtle tannins and a hit of pepper comes through on the finish. Left in the glass for a while everything softens ending up with a very drinkable Italian for not a lot of money.
I was a little bit sceptical when I saw the gimmicky bottle but rest assured there is nothing gimmicky about the wine, this is a very quaffable mid week drink with Pizza 🍕 or pasta 🍝 I enjoyed it and would probably buy again.
My Rating 8/10 Corks
If you’re looking for a reasonably priced Primitivo (Aka Zinfandel) and you enjoy the big hitting Zins from California look no further than this beauty from the very heel of boot in South east Italy’s Puglia region.
When I picked this up I was amazed at how heavy this bottle was and it just said quality to me and as you will read I wasn’t wrong. An impressive inky purple colour in the glass, with pronounced aromas of blackcurrants, ripe plums, sweet fruitcake, raisins and earthy spices.
After the first mouthful you begin to realise how impressive this wine is, sweet dark fruits, blackcurrants again this time with cherries. There was an earthiness about it and a fairly big hit of oak (6 months in French oak barriques), liquorice is also noticeable along with sweet candied fruit and a shot of expresso coffee.
For the price this is a fabulous Italian Stallion of a wine and although there was lots going on it still tasted smooth and easy to drink despite its hefty 14.5% which I didn’t really notice. I got this on offer for around £7.99 (great value) but I would be quite happy to pay the full price of £10.99
My Rating 8.5/10 Corks
Haunting words of Edgar Allan Poe’s Poem ‘The Raven’, the film of the same name starring Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff and the American late 60’s rock band Creedance Clearwater Revivals hit called ‘Lodi’ all have nothing to do with wine but whenever I see this bottle with its name and label these thoughts spring to mind.
The great looking , if slightly gothic bottle is a Californian ‘Ravenswood Lodi Old Vines Zinfandel 2011’ and if you’re looking for a big wine with lots of flavour this might fit the bill.
The dark brooding bottle held a surprisingly lighter coloured wine than I expected, with aromas of candied fruit, including cherries, plums and raspberries. Slightly smokey, slightly earthy with a sugary undertone.
On first sip I found it bursting with Juicy fruit including strawberries, blueberries although sweet there was a little tangy tartness about it. Lots of peppery spice , sweet buttery vanilla with a little heat at the back of the throat from the big 14.5% ABV.
This was a big wine with big flavours, pretty much what I expected from a Californian Zin. Nice looking bottle, pretty good for the price especially when on offer. Great with hearty food but could be easily drunk on its own.
Overall, a touch too tannic perhaps and a touch too sweet for my taste but I’m sure a lot of people will love it.
My Rating 7.5/10 Corks
Various around £7.99 – £9.99