Aldi Wine ClubFree wine in return for writing 140 characters – that’s what the discount supermarket Aldi are offering to ten wine enthusiasts. Their new Aldi Wine Club initiative is offering two free bottles of wine a month in return for a short and snappy wine review appearing on the social media network Twitter.

To be in with a chance of being one of the lucky ten all you have to do is explain in 150 words or less why you should receive this free wine and then email your short competition essay entry to by 2 June.

Twitter logoSo if you win, how do you go about explaining your enjoyment and taste sensations of each wine in approximately ten words? Remember that’s all you’re allowed in the condensed writing format of Twitter.

Aldi labelsWell you’ll need to start with the basics, the name of the wine and its price, plus where you can buy it from – which in the first instance will be Aldi. And you can do that by using the hashtag #AldiWineClub.

Twitter allows its users to include hashtags (typed as #) within their 140 character typing limit as an easy way for fellow enthusiasts to follow a topic. So by including #AldiWineClub in your bi-monthly Aldi wine reviews you’ll not only allow the other competition winners to see what you are doing (and vice versa) but also allow wine writers and journos to read your reviews, share them with other wine enthusiasts, and also cadge some ideas. Because us wine writers don’t have the monopoly on expertise in online wine reviews.

To get the most from the Twitter medium succinctness is all. So to help you get started here are a few examples of standard wine reviews transformed into Twitter-friendly wine thoughts.

PG Wine Reviews

Standard Review

Aldi Venturer Italian Vermentino 2012

£4.99 Aldi

An uncomplicated wine that tastes of apple and baked pineapple. A bit overpriced.

Aldi tweetTwitter Review

Aldi Venturer Italian Vermentino 2012 £4.99: uncomplicated wine tasting of apple & baked pineapple. Bit overpriced. #AldiWineClub

Standard Review

Aldi Venturer Sicilian Nero D’Avola 2013

£4.99 Aldi

Dark aromas of choc, cherry and raisins are followed with lighter flavours of plum and apple. Drink with lighter-flavoured pizzas or chicken dishes.

Twitter Review

Aldi Venturer Sicilian Nero D'Avola 2013 £4.99: Flavours of plum & apple. Drink with lighter-flavoured pizza or chicken dishes #AldiWineClub

Standard Review

Quinta de Azevedo Portuguese Vinho Verde 2013

£8.22 Majestic, £8.29 Waitrose

Light lemony and apple spritz with a hint of creaminess.

Twitter Review

Quinta de Azevedo Portuguese Vinho Verde 2013 £8.22 Majestic, £8.29 Waitrose: Light lemony and apple spritz with a hint of creaminess

Standard Review

Tesco Italia Rosso

£3.99 Tesco

Needs decanting into a jug to lose the preservative sulphite smell but after 15 mins you’ll enjoy a nice fruity red with hints of choc. Excellent value but needs food.

Twitter Review

Tesco Italia Rosso £3.99: Needs decanting but after 15 mins enjoy a nice fruity red with hints of choc. Excellent value but needs food.

Got the idea? Good luck and remember the Aldi competition closes on 2nd June.

This article also appeared as Paula's Wines of the Week on

tongueHowever tempting the wine label’s proclamation of ‘aromas of wild summer berries’ and ‘flavours of red fruits...with a refreshing finish’ my own senses found a smell reminiscent of rubbery elderberry and a smoky tart taste with a hint of chocolate – in fact the overwhelming impression of the £3.99 Sicilian Rosso was that it had been poured from the end of a very oxidised barrel. So who was right – me or the label?

trophyWhen was the last time you didn't have to pay for your wine? Some ago I'll bet. Wine lovers often get given bottles of wine as presents but as these are usually something top-notch and expensive it doesn’t make financial sense to replace them using your own money. But there is a way of boosting the wine rack contents for free - entering competitions with wine prizes.

rumMix yourself a Rum and Coke cocktail using a dash of dark rum and a classic cola then watch a harmless frothy scum form around the added ice cubes. Then mix another Rum and Coke but using pale rum (Barcardi is suitable but a supermarket own-label will be just as good at two-thirds the price). No dirty looking froth forms this time, but why is that?