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 http://paulagoddard.com/images/stories/wines/paula goddard wine tasting sheet.pdf

Co-op three winesThere’s space to record the wine colour (red, white or rosé) as well as where you bought it and for how much. It’s also useful to keep a note of what the bottle label says so that if you like the wine you’ll have a good chance of finding exactly the same, or a similar type, again.

The tasting sheet also has space to record the grape varieties used in the wine – these will be displayed on the label, unless it's French, when these will be hidden from you, because you shouldn't need to ask should you? A white Burgundy will be made from Chardonnay grapes, a red Burgundy from Pinot Noir, and Bordeaux reds (or as we English like to call them, Clarets), will be a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes.

Once you’ve written all that down you’ll finally pour the wine. Give it a sniff so you can make a note of its aroma and then sip and taste. There are no right or wrong words for the aroma and taste – write down whatever you think the wine smells and tastes of even if that's home-made custard or Persil washing up liquid.

Not sure what wines to get for the tasting? Then try these aroma-friendly and slurpable bargains.

PG Wine Reviews

Aldi rossoAldi Andarra Chilean Sauvignon Blanc 2013

£3.99 Aldi

Great value fruity white that tastes of creamy grapefruit and pineapple.

Aldi Domain Roussellet French Malbec

£4.39 Aldi

Damson and cream flavours.

Tesco French Corbières

£4.69 Tesco

Juicy flavours of blackberry, cherry and damson.

Co-op Fairtrade Argentinean Bonarda Shiraz 2013

£4.99 Co-op

Lighter flavours than the slightly meaty aroma leads you to expect – so get down those creamy cherry flavours.

Co-op Fairtrade Argentinean Torrontés Chardonnay 2014

£4.99 Co-op

Fruity and refreshing flavours of orange, lemon and apple.

McGuigan The Shortlist Australian Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

£13. 97 Asda, £14.99 Majestic

Rich and chewy red with flavours of blackcurrant, liquorice and plum.

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

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?

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?

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.