You’d be surprised what R40 can get you these days. Loitering around supermarket aisles in Johannesburg this week (as you do), I was impressed to find lots of bargains of cheap and cheery wines to choose. Here are 6 that I thought worth sharing to keep the cold out this winter. Many of these wines are available at all multiple retailers so prices are just for a guide.
The Wolftrap Red 2012 R39.99
Pints and pints of this were quaffed last week at the Steakhouse Awards lunch where the Local Grill from Johannesburg triumphed over Cape Town and Durban. Part of the prize was a year’s supply of this wine which would have been enough for me to grab my apron and my grill and get going for the following year. A savoury and toothsome blend of Shiraz with Mourvedre and Viognier, this is a wonderful winter warmer with any slow-cooked dish or fine steak.
Chateau Libertas 2011 R29.99
How could any budget list miss out Libertas?? This is a cheery, life-saving stalwart which never goes out of fashion, even though the label design might lead you to think otherwise. What’s in it? Who knows these days – possibly not as much Cinsault as in previous years (alas) – but it’s a happy, friendly, gluggable glass which doesn’t have any problems in any company and with any food. And at this price (found in Pick n Pay at Brightwater Commons) it’s a bargain indeed.
Glen Carlou Tortoise Hill Red 2012 R39.99
Oh, how I love second labels of good wineries! This is a great example why – it’s a juicy blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, has clean, simple labels and comes at a price that makes not buying 2 bottles seem stupid. It’s not often you can get a classic Bordeaux-blend for 40 bucks and winemaker Arco Laarman has ensured that you get plenty of value for money, lots of dark berries and good length here.
Du Toitskloof Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 R36.99
Such good value from over the mountain! Year after year, Du Toitskloof churn out inexpensive, well-made, totally-correct wines which hit the spot in so many more ways than one. This is a great example – but I could have also chosen the Merlot, the Pinotage, the Shiraz, let alone started on the whites as well. Savour this with a nice piece of steak or even after dinner with some fine, mature Cheddar cheese.
Obikwa Pinotage 2012 R29.99
A new cheap and friendly release from the big bird of Obikwa and it’s another goodie. The Shiraz is still basking in the glow of doing extraordinarily well in competitions – the Shiraz SA event is being judged as I type so who knows what will happen this year? – and this pinotage is a worthy member of this good-value family. Lots of cherries and a hint of chocolate and coffee but not too much, it’s a very pleasant quaffer and I enjoyed it.
Leeuwenkuil Shiraz 2011 R35.99
If I only had to buy one wine on this list, this would probably be it. A Swartland Shiraz with all the pedigree that entails for under R40 – you’re having a larffff, as we might say in the UK. This really is a delicious wine (the Chenin that goes with it, is equally good if you want a white wine) with lots of smoky, peppery perfume and some yummy biltong and meaty flavours sweeping up the rear. Buy a case for winter – you’ll thank me for it.
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