Top Ten Red Wines of 2018 this week. Majestic are putting up a good show with the Co-op making its return for another year. Tesco has stormed in with several wines after upgrading its wine selection earlier this year.
So what’s the best way to serve these wines? Their complexity often gets better if you decant the wine – just open the bottle and pour the wine into a jug or a decanter if you have one (I use a decanter emblazoned with ‘Stowells of Chelsea’ which I bought at a charity shop years ago) and let it sit there for half an hour or so while you rustle up the evening meal.
This action of pouring the wine and leaving it in a wide brimmed vessel allows for a tiny amount of aeration – just enough to get the molecules mingling in the wine and uncovering the juicy, enjoyable flavours that can stay hidden if the red is left in the bottle.
Well here they are in ascending order of price.
Top Ten Reds of 2018
1. Tesco Spanish Vina Del Cura Rioja Crianza 2015
Flavours of dark cherry and violet cream chocolates with a hint of black pepper. Simple but effective wine.
2. Oxford Landing Australian Merlot 2016
Plums, violets, cherry, coffee and a touch of earthiness. A nice range of flavours.
3. Running With Bulls Australian Tempranillo 2014
Cherry with a chocolate cake edge. Sophisticated flavours that aren’t sweet and obvious. A very nice wine.
4. Tesco Finest French Minervois La Liviniere 2015
Plum with a hint of black olive and liquorice.
5. Reserve Pizay 2017, French Beaujolais-Villages
£8 Co-op (or 2 for £15 until January 3)
Light, fresh and fruity. A nice red wine.
6. Pulpito 2016, Spanish Tempranillo
Velvety flavours of chocolate and violets. Scrummy.
7. El Esteco Don David Malbec-Malbec 2016, Argentina
Smoky ham and damson aromas with a liquorice and mint flavours.
8. Vina Alarde Spanish Rioja Reserva 2012
The connoisseurs choice with flavours of raspberry, chocolate and violets.
9. S&R Douro Red 2016, Portugal
Coffee, cherry and barley sugar flavours. Good looking bottle too.
10. Baron de Ley Spanish Rioja Reserva 2013
£12 Tesco and Waitrose
Complex flavours of dark chocolate, cherry and raisin that manage to be quite light in the mouth.