A monthly review of an easily obtainable wine that’s had a recommendation somewhere in a National newspaper. Usually posted just before the usual monthly theme, this may be the latest post for only a few days, but this month it may last some time….


Tesco Finest Côtes de Gascogne IGP 2014 – 12% – £8
I was drawn to this wine, a blend of Gros Manseng and Suavignon Blanc, having tasted the Jurancon Sec (Castera) (which is all Gros Manseng) at the last Sock Club tasting. [See previous, August 28th, post].

This example had a press reviews emphasising summer freshness, whereas the Castera – much older – was all sap and nuts and herbs… This has a very grassy first nose, with the SB really prominent with light floral (elderflower?) hints – more GM peach and grapefruit develops later.

The palate has startling acidity – very lemon with a richer warmth from the GM. Later a grainy, even nutty, textured finish showing a slightly bitter-sweet grapefruit edge – making it very refreshing.

Later the nose gains more fruit along the peach-mango line, with the GM gaining more influence, With food (roast pork in a fennel-apple-cream sauce) the acidity was very good with a lighter grapefruit frame emerging from the complementation, the wine then shows a sappy textured finish.

The wine puts two grapes together that are a slightly unusual pair, and initially aren’t integrated, a year in the cellar or better an hour breathing and warming gently might help. Still: refreshing, unusual, interesting, useful and very good value!

Quality: 13.5/20   Value: 16/20

I’m off on holiday to the Mosel and Burgundy now for a while so, unless I’m moved to post by the wines I encounter there, you will not here from me until towards the end of the month. So … happy imbibing in the meantime…