Lidl new summer wine selection review

Lidl logoLaunched into store at the end of last week, Lidl's 40 new additions to its Wine Cellar range make tasty and affordable accompaniments to any meal. Ranging in price from £4.79 to £16.99 these new wines hail from the well-known wine regions of Spain, Germany, France, Portugal, Italy and Chile but boast some lesser-known grape varieties. But how good are they? I tasted eight of the new range, all priced under £8.99, and the results varied from the out right spectacular to the alright.

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What is champagne?

bread slicesChampagne is often described as smelling and tasting like a freshly risen loaf. That's because a double dose of yeast is added to give this famous wine its fizz and in doing so leaves a trace of its creamy flavours behind: méthode champenoise turns a very dry French white wine into a sweeter and more expensive sparkling version.

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Wine quiz

WritingYou've read the columns, bought the bottles and drunk the wine. But how much do you really know about wine? A lot? A little? Dunno? Then why not find out with this ten question wine quiz. The answers are at the bottom of the page – so no peeking until you've at least had go or passed this quiz along to someone else. Here we go:

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Corner shop wine

Wine aisleThere's no wine in the house and with only ten minutes to go before the food is ready what can you do? Buying the meal-matching wine from the local village shop or corner convenience store is the best strategy when time is limited.

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Wine tasting sheet

Tasting sheetIf these weekly columns have inspired you to organise your own wine tasting at home, then you'll need to get some kit together. Buy yourself some large wine glasses (cheap supermarket ones will do) for capturing any wine aromas released when the wine is swirled prior to sniffing and tasting. And to help you keep track of all the wines you taste why not use my free wine tasting sheet available from goddard wine tasting sheet.pdf

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Average wine

coins£5.43 is the average-spend on a bottle of supermarket wine. And with the recession predicted to carry on until goodness knows when that amount isn’t likely to increase any time soon - unless our Chancellor of the Exchequer decides to put up alcohol excise duty yet again. And he might - but until that time comes what exactly does an average-priced bottle of wine taste like?

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Sauternes for pancakes

pancakes with icecreamAs you squeeze the lemon juice over your pancakes tomorrow will you be contemplating an accompanying glass of wine or a nice cup of tea? Wine isn’t the natural partner of choice for the traditional Shrove Tuesday meal because lemon and the necessary lashings of sugar will almost stop the taste buds registering anything – unless the wine is even sweeter or more acidic than each of the pancake toppings. So what wine, if any, matches these criteria?

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Turn your loved one's knees to jelly

heart wine glassSchmoozing with booze this Valentine's Day is a sure-fire way of turning your loved one's knees to jelly. Start by whipping out a bottle of vintage Dom Perignon chilled to 38 degrees Fahrenheit from the fridge, open it (without taking your eye out with the flying cork) before pouring it into elegant champagne flutes.

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What to do with the Christmas sherry

Christmas baublesFive weeks on from Christmas I'm still left with several partially completed bottles of sherry. So just to help clear away a space on the front room mantelpiece I finished off the contents of the Amontillado and sloshed the sweet into a trifle. Their flavours still hit the spot but they didn't seem quite as fresh as they were when first opened.

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Online wine class with Twitter

Twitter logo on wine glass‘So what do you think the wine tastes of?’ is one of the one of the most frightening questions to be asked during an evening class in wine appreciation. Because not only is your ability to pronounce waffle being judged but also how well you’ve got the whole body language thing under control. Because bum shuffling and mumbling gets ‘nul points’ when you’re face-to-face with teacher. But what if all that could be avoided? It can if your wine class meets online through Twitter.

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