Thursday, April 26, 2018


So I grab a range of random reds from our first Lidl we visit in Italy. You've got to start somewhere so I chose price points.  From left to right these cost 1.69, 2.99, 4.99 and 13.99 euro . Alcohol levels seemed to go up with price. Once again left to right: 12%, 13%, 13.5% and an absurd 15.5%.

Sadly there's not much else to report. We opened the bottles and tasted them over three days. Nothing happened. The two innocuous cheaper wines stayed that way. The Valpolicella Ripasso stayed a charry unbalanced beast and the |Amarone remained a weird bottle of over extractive fruit.

It's sad when a retailer I enjoy gets it so wrong. In the absence of any on floor advice you run the risk of being very disappointed. Lidl also have their own label Barolo which I've found very disappointing.

A 2/5 rating is probably harsh on the cheaper two but generous for the others. Impossible to recommend any of these.


For the last five months of our travels we've found it impossible to beat the German riesling that's on the Aldi shelves [until we arrive] in Spain. But we're now a long way from Spain and as the weather warms up in Italy this looks like being our sitting in the sun everyday quaffer. This is a beautiful crisp dry aromatic white. Lemon is the dominant fruit character on a delicate yet surprisingly assertive palate. Impossible to recommend highly enough
This is a Lidl "own brand" that translates to "farmhouse in the country". As opposed to farmhouse in the city I guess.

REGION: Veneto/Friulli, Italy
A/V: 12% 
PRICE: 3.49 euro 
FROM: Lidl, Italy
RATING: 5/5 from me 

Thursday, April 12, 2018


Lucky enough to be in France's vastly underrated Languedoc region, lucky enough to read an article recommending a visit to Chateau le Bouis and lucky enough to have a range of outstanding wines shown to us by the charming, knowledgeable Audrey. We've lost count of the number of Cellar Doors we've visited around the world but this experience, thanks to Audrey and the wines, was up there with the best.

In a truly impressive line up these four impressed us most. If we lived in Europe we'd be buyng dozens of them. As it is we're enquiring about shipping costs to Australia.  But for the time being we just bought a few bottles of each for some upcoming tastings we have planned.

All wines scored 5/5 from me. They're all quite different in their style with a variety of winemaking techniques applied to different combinations of varieties. This is reflected in their labelling which unusually lacks any common cotporate branding theme. 

2014 Cuvee R ... a blend of Grenache, Carignan and Shiraz [14% a/v] 9.95 euro
2014 Cuvee Zoe ... mostly Carignan that's gone through carbonic maceration [14.5% a/v] 12.70 euro
2011 Cuvee Arthur ... mostly Shiraz with 12% from old Carignan vines [14% a/v] 15.50 euro
2011 Cuvee K ... mostly Shiraz with 6% Carignan [15% a/v] 25 euro

You may struggle to find these anywhere but from the winery:
Chateau le Bouis
Route Bleue, 11430 Gruissan 
ph 04 68 75 25 25