Wine Note -January 22

Bottle of red wine

Wine Note 2020 Specially Selected Vacqueyras

(Aldi £11.99)

The first words on the label are “Chassaux et fils”. A long-established French wine company passing from father to son since the revolution you might think.

Think again – there’s no such producer; Chassaux et fils is an Aldi trademark. If you check their shelves, you’ll see it on wines from the Rhône, Burgundy and Alsace. The labelling is legal of course but feels slightly sneaky.

Vacqueyras is in the south of the Rhône valley and has been rising (slowly) through the leagues of French wine: Côtes du Rhône (1937), Côtes du Rhône Villages (1955), Côtes du Rhône Villages Vacqueyras (1967) and Vacqueyras (1990).

It’s a typical blend of Grenache and Syrah, spicy and dark fruited. As it’s from 2020, there’s plenty of refreshing acidity. It’s from the warm south so the alcohol level is high too, at 14.5%.

The Specially Selected brand was introduced to offer Aldi customers “Gourmet foods at everyday low prices”. In the case of this wine, that’s fair enough. Not sneaky at all.

John Freeland  (u3a Wine Tasting Group)