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Dare to try the unusual – safely

India and Brazil are great cricketing and footballing nations, but wine producers? Surely not! ……….. If you think so too, be prepared for a surprise.

The wine world is getting smaller but some exotic newcomers are underwhelming rather than exciting; here, then, is a selection that – my taste drive suggests – carry little risk of disappointment.

All form part of the M&S promotions that started on Tuesday but, because my recent posts have been red wine dominated, the focus this time is wholly on white wines.

These specific promotions expire on 3 August but my judgements on the wines themselves should hold good for at least three months from the date of the post.

Click on any of the bottles shown for an enlarged image to help you pinpoint the wine on a crowded shelf.

Sauvignon full of eastern promise

Gooseberries with an exotic edge
Gooseberries with an exotic edge

Although several oriental producers have tried to crack the UK market, most of their wines – put kindly – are “work in progress”; this is different.


While 2014 Nasik Sauvignon (down from £7 to “two for £12” – or £5 a bottle in Scotland) from the hills of Western India has few sauvignon aromas, it has impressive gooseberry and lemon flavours with underlying hints of something more exotic.

Keep going east

Unlike any PG you know
Unlike any PG you know

Orthodox by comparison, yet different in its own way, is this New Zealand white that flies under the pinot grigio flag – rather than the slightly posher pinot gris equivalent.

In truth, though, 2012 Seifried Estate Nelson Pinot Grigio (£8 – instead of £10) is more like traditional pinot gris with clear-cut, fresh lemon centred acidity, pear and herbal texture but touches of orange and apricot too.

Or perhaps stay here in Europe

White peaches and lime
White peaches and lime

This absolute gem will pose a challenge for all those riesling phobics out there. So, are you self-confident enough to put quality German wine like this on your dinner table?

With none of the grape variety’s occasional hints of kerosene, the fresh and complex 2014 Mineralstein Riesling (£8 – instead of £10) brings you delightful white peach influenced depth with vibrant apple and lime acidity and a long, slightly flinty, finish.

But let’s end with a sparkle

Bold acidity but Brazilian nuts too
Bold acidity but Brazilian nuts too

Brazil is acquiring a growing reputation for good quality sparkling wines and this one is not only great drinking but brilliantly priced too.

Rounded but uncomplicated, Coconova Brut (£7 – instead of £9) uses sauvignon, chenin and verdejo grapes to deliver red apple and tropical fruit flavours, bold acidity, creamy texture and a savoury nuttiness on the finish.


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2 Responses

  1. Roy ….Most M&S Stores will have a selection of the wines on offer shown here or, alternatively, try their online facility ……… Brian

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