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Thursday 21 February 2013

Tavernello Wines from Morrisons

Tavernello is an Italian branded wine now available in the UK at Morrisons.

It is, in fact, Italy's top branded wine - whether or not that's a good thing is something of a moot point.

The main facts of interest are that there is a range of three wines all at £3.99, significantly below the national average, and that they are generally rather good for the price.

There are some - perhaps many - wine writers who argue that decent wine cannot be had for under a fiver, after you've taken duty, mark-up and production costs into account.

Well, they're wrong - drinkable wine does exist below a fiver, just as unpleasant wines exist above that price point.

True, the odds are stacked against a sub-£4 wine being decent, but that just means you need to be selective, or take good advice.

Garganega Pinot Grigio 2011 from Triveneto in north east Italy, it is a sandy yellow in the glass. There is an odd and not entirely pleasant aroma of wet straw or wheat beer on the nose. I'm not sure this is intentional and, as the bottle is screw-capped, I think this must be a tank fault rather than a bottle fault.

The wheat-beery aromas persist on the palate, but there is pleasant acidity and some ripe orchard fruit.

Reasonable palate length and finish with a touch of persistence, so all in order except for that oxidative thing.

I return to it about half-an-hour later and the wet-straw aromas seem to have largely mitigated, leaving a more conventional and pleasant wine that is what was intended, I think.

Trebbiano Chardonnay Rubicone IGT 2012 from Emilia-Romagna, this is a blend of Italy's workhorse Trebbiano grape with the better-known and more noble Chardonnay.

Pale in the glass, this is another light quaffer or aperitif wine; there are ripe apples and pears fruit, good mouthwatering acidity and, most interestingly, a touch of yeasty pear skin.

There is some persistence on the finish: very good for the money.

Sangiovese Rubicone IGT 2012 from one of northern Italy's signature red grapes, this is bright cherry red in the glass.

There are some interesting, Pinot-esque aromas of cherry fruit, spice, smokiness and musky, woodsy undergrowth on the nose.

On the palate, there is more ripe red fruit, a soft texture, good acidity, some vanilla sweetness and a touch of smokey spice.

It is quite mouthfilling with a touch of very gentle grip developing on the finish.

Setting aside the oddness of the Garganega Pinot Grigio, these are light, easy-drinking, entirely pleasant, well-priced, everyday wines.

For me, the best overall is the Sangiovese.

Tavernello wines are £3.99 from Morrisons; provided for review.

Other related articles
Tesco Ogio Pinot Grigio
Chateau David 2010 Bordeaux Superieur
Co-op Fairtrade Wines

Morrisons - website, twitter
Tavernello - website

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