autumn treesIt’s official, summer is now over. How do I know this for sure? Because not only are the leaves on the trees changing colour but the supermarkets are now having ‘Autumn’ wine festivals and bargain events. And they’re all at it: Tesco and the Co-op start their autumn offers on Wednesday while Asda has ‘Rollback’ and 3 for £12 offers.

Coop 3Starting Wednesday 8th, the Co-op is offering half-price deals on red, white and rosé trios from the Spanish Castillo Murviedro winery; Bulgarian Silver Rock Limited Release; plus a 3 for £11 offer on Hungarian Vantage Point Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir Merlot Rosé – all ending September 28th.

I hope you’ve still got space on your wine rack for Tesco’s Autumn Wine Festival which also starts Wednesday with many half-price and 25% off bargains. And it’s all included, everyday reds and whites through to champagne and many of their ‘Finest’ range.

Morrisons is already underway with its festival offers. Look out for their South African wine promotion running until September 26 and their heavily advertised New Zealand Crux Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc down from £9.99 to £3.99 (maximum 6 bottles per customer).

SantaForgive the use of the ‘C’ word but now would be a good time to stock up for Christmas.

PG Wine Tips

£3.99 and under

There are still some good bottles to be found that cost the same as a couple of National Lottery tickets.

Sainsbury’s Chilean Merlot
£3.31 Sainsbury’s

Fruity red with cherry, blackcurrant and blackberry flavours. Hint of spice adds warmth.

£5.99 and under

There are a few fruity, slurpable wines among the forgettable masses.

Spar Italian Valpolicella
£4.49 Spar (down from £5.69 until September 15th)

Old Spice aroma mixed with plum and cherry. Flavours of blackberry.

Arniston Bay South African Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2009
£4.79 Morrisons (down from £6.29 until September 26th)

Deep flavours of chocolate and burnt toast, lightened with overtones of raspberry. A good match to almost anything.

Sainsbury’s Californian White Wine
£4.89 Sainsbury’s

Sweet and sour blend of tart apple and lemon with a background of creamy lemon. Flavours to match lighter vegetarian dishes.

Shelter Bay New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc
£5.99 Sainsbury’s (down from £9.99 until September 14th)

Fresh but not tart flavours of gooseberry, butter and lemon. A balanced and versatile wine.

Costs a bit more, but tastes great

Sometimes a bottle of wine tastes so fab it's still a bargain whatever it costs.

Tesco Finest Italian Bonotto Raboso 2000
£6.99 Tesco

Complex red wine with aromas ranging from violet sweets to gravy, and red fruit flavours mixed with smoke, black pepper and spice.

Wolf Blass Australian Silver Label Shiraz Cabernet
£9.99 Morrisons (down from £12.99 until October 3rd)

Blackcurrant and coffee mix, with a cocoa edge.

This article has appeared as Paula's Wines of the Week on Mature Times

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man on mobile12Supermarket wine aisles can be lonely places. And pretty intimidating too when you’re the only person there, which seems so often the case. So when you need some wine and food matching advice who you gonna call? Not Dan Ackroyd in a 1980s film with a catch phrase that won’t leave the head, but Tesco’s free wine app on your mobile phone.

Freshcase wineboxesNew Year, new wine gadgets – that’s how the wine industry likes to keep our attention during the post-Christmas slow down. And this year it’s the turn of the Australian wine producer Hardys with their innovative winebox The Freshcase. Because Freshcase isn’t your bog-standard winebox, its sleek design knocks spots of the usual cardboard 3-litre nasties. And what’s even better is that someone’s finally sat down and ironed out all those irritating design features that made pouring wine from a winebox less than a pleasure.