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Friday 30 March 2012

Weekly Wine: Easter Treats

Easter - and that magical long weekend - is swooping ever closer. And it's definitely going to be sunny the whole weekend. GOT THAT, WEATHER GODS? IT IS GOING TO BE NON-STOP SUNSHINE.

Right, now we've got that sorted, you just have to work out how you're going to spend those four heavenly days off. I recommend eating lots of chocolate that's been moulded into the shape of adorable animals. Oh, and some wine. A good few glasses of wine with all that delicious Eastery food.

Here are some bottles that will be perfect to while away hours in all the (AHEM) brilliant outdoorsy weather.


I can't think of a more ideal time to crack open the first of the year's rosé. If you've not delved far into the world of rosé yet, all I can ask is that you please steer clear of the big brand names. They tend to be sugary and underwhelming, and you can get so much more for around the same price.

For instance: Tesco Finest Navarra Garnacha Rosé is a measly £6.99 but has won awards for its aceness. It's a cool all-rounder with food but it's balanced red-fruit flavour is great to serve chilled even on its own.

If you prefer your rosé a little more delicate, then you can't go wrong with one from Provence. You can pick up a bottle of this fresh, herby, exquisite style of rosé pretty much anywhere, but they tend to be a little pricier. Majestic, however, have one of their marvellous offers on: pick up two bottles of the Chateau Saint Roch-les-Vignes Cotes du Provence and you can have them for £6.99 each.


Obviously, lamb is generally the dish of the day on Easter Sunday, and it's one of the easiest wine matches I know.

Cabernet Sauvignon is roast lamb's bestie, and I don't think you can beat a good Left Bank Bordeaux. They can be pricey, but surprise, surprise: Majestic have a cracking offer on again. The Chateau Romefort 2006 Haut-Medoc is £7.99 if you buy two bottles (£9.99 normally) and is from super vineyards. It's got a nice dollop of Merlot to soften the Cabernet, making this perfect for Sunday lunch, and most red meat dishes actually.

The other traditional lamb match is Rioja, but again you can easily pay too much without realising it. If you want a classic example, then this Marques del Romeral Reserva Rioja 2005 from M&S hits all the right buttons. A stonkingly good year, the extra credit of the Reserva status, and just £9.99 from M&S - I think this is a real treat.

If your budget doesn't stretch that far, try Epoto Tempranillo from The Wine Society for £5.75. Same grape, same country, and a whole lot of care has gone into the production of this, making it a perfect spicy, fruity lamb match, but good for evening quaffing too.


If you've decided on lighter fare for your Easter munching, such as fish, crisp salads and lighter chicken dishes, or if you just want something to lazily pour into your glass in the garden, then you need a refreshing bottle of white.

Sainsbury's Taste the Difference range have done well recently, and their Taste the Difference Gavi (£8.49 a bottle) won Gold at the International Wine Challenge. The Italians know how to do outdoorsy wine: it's vibrant and minerally and sumptuous with or without food.

Easter started early for me last night at a delightful garden party, and I fell in love with the Quinta da Lagoalva from The Wine Society. It's a Portuguese white with effortless fragrance and charm - not bad for £6.75.

What are your top Easter wine picks? Tell us all about it in the comments or on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

Image taken from Matthiasson Wine's photostream under the Creative Commons License.

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