pound coinsThe £5 and under wine category has expanded rapidly this year now that retailers have finally realised consumer spending habits have changed irrevocably due to the recession. Waitrose added its own value range in October, while Tesco and Sainsbury’s enhanced and expanded their existing cheaper wine ranges. But Aldi still holds the top spot for the supermarket with the most consistently drinkable value wines. And that’s why six of its wines fill this year’s Top Ten Wines Under A Fiver.

After removing the merely alright or just okay from the list, the final ten are all not only great value but taste fab too. So expect fruity, long lasting flavours that offer a high class balance between sweetness and acidity and are a great match to everyday foods or the richer fayre that’ll be passing our lips in a month’s time.

So here they in order of stonking value, with the top spot being filled by a wine that if you were told it cost six times as much you wouldn’t bat an eyelid and going down in order to the merely very, very good.

PG’s Top Ten Wines Under A Fiver

Aldi Danti1

Aldi Danti Pinot Grigio Sparkling Brut

£4.99

A complex sparkling that knocks spots off many champagnes selling at six times the price. Fresh aromas of grass, lemons, pears and apples followed by flavours of creamy gooseberry and almond biscuits. Lightly sparkling so the bubbles won’t get up your nose.

2

Aldi Italian Pinot Noir 2011

£4.19

Pinot Noirs are often expensive, hail from the Burgundy region of France and taste of cherries. This Italian version only meets the latter criteria, and it does it very well. Light cherry flavours initially with intense darker cherry flesh nuances coming through on top – it’s like biting through the flesh of a cherry that’s been sprinkled with cocoa. Very good indeed.

Tesco Simply Chenin3

Tesco Simply South African Chenin Blanc

£4.39

This is the first of the amply stocked Simply wine range that rates above alright and gets into the nicely balanced category. A creamy dried banana edge and a lemony beginning. Lots of long, balanced flavours.

4

Aldi Budavar Hungarian Chardonnay 2010

£3.39

Really good flavours at a really good price. Classic Chardonnay that tastes of a mixture of apple, pear, sweet melon and a touch of bubblegum.

5

Aldi Italian Moscato Sparkling

£4.79

This low alcohol sweet fizz was a Seasonal Special on sale during October so there may not be many bottles still around, but if you do spot one then buy it. This pleasant lightly sparkling wine comes into its own if left open for a day and the air is allowed to perform miracles – turning grape flavoured wine into an intense marmalade and rose tasting dessert wine that still retains a slight sparkle.

6

Aldi Italian Pinot Grigio

£3.99

Medium sweet flavours of apple, pear and bubblegum but with a lemon zest ending that means it’s not too sweet to go with food. Very good.

Asda Rioja7

Asda Marques del Norte Rioja 2010

£4.68

An elegant wine in an elegant bottle: Morello cherry and dark chocolate.

8

Tesco Simply Chilean Sauvignon Blanc

£4.79

Zingy gooseberry and lemon with a creamy passion fruit ending.

Tesco Simply Cab Sauv9

Tesco Simply Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon

£4.79

You really can’t go wrong with a Chilean Cabernet and this one packs in blackcurrant, marzipan and dark chocolate flavours.

10

Aldi La Tinta Spanish Shiraz 2011

£3.49

Dessert cherry with a hint of milk chocolate and spice. Smooth.

Who said you can’t get decent wine for under a fiver?

Related articles: Tesco Simply wine range reviewed, £2.99 wine: it's death is greatly exaggerated

This article has also appeared as Paula's Wines of the Week on MatureTimes.co.uk