Wines of the week: Les Pionniers NV Champagne; Casa Silva Reserva Carmenère 2009; Banfi Mandrielle Sangiovese 2009
Terry Kirby selects the best bottles to buy
Sunday 01 January 2012
New Year's aperitif
Les Pionniers NV Champagne
If you are planning on celebrating the New Year and need to stock up on fizz, this sparkler from a retailer whose stores are mostly open today was recently rated a Best Buy by Which? in a test of supermarket champagnes for less than £35. It's not difficult to see why – light, crisply refreshing and with a nice long finish, it would be great for gatherings or as an aperitif with canapés and fishy starters. £17.99, Co-operative stores
New Year's lunch
Casa Silva Reserva Carmenère 2009
A wonderfully soft and smooth Carmenère from one of Chile's most reliable producers. Great aromas of ripe fruits and spices give way to rich, mouth-filling flavours of juicy blackberries, some chocolate and coffee, together with a balancing touch of oak. A great bottle for any roast meats, particularly chicken, and capable of handling Middle Eastern-style dishes. Wine Rack stores are also open today. £9.99, Wine Rack; £8.99, averys.com; £9, michaeljoblingwines.com (2007/08; minimum purchase 12 bottles)
Banfi Mandrielle Sangiovese 2009
Need a little Mediterranean cuisine to make a change from all that seasonal food over the past week or so? And are budgets tight after present-buying splurges? This wine fits both requirements – a good price for a robust, juicy, medium-bodied, straightforward bottle that is perfect for a pizza or a bowl of pasta with tomato-based sauces. £5.99 (each for two bottles, if bought as part of six-bottle minimum purchase; normally £8.99), majestic.co.uk
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