I was underwhelmed by two recently tasted, fairly pricey Costco-procured wines, so thought for my next adventure into supermarketland I’d try Aldi, another import into the UK. At £5.99, this Rioja Reserva was the most expensive wine on offer at the Chester-le-Street branch of this brutally efficient supermarket chain.
While not a £50 wine in disguise, this drinks very well and in most respects was more enjoyable than either Costco wine. The aroma is settled and integrated, with calm notes of spice, strawberry, vanilla oak, savoury fruits and some bacon fat. It is expressive and well balanced, showing enough complexity to satisfy without being overtly challenging.
More of the same on the palate, showing a very clean flavour profile and firm acid. The interplay of sweet and savoury is especially enjoyable here, with fruit pulling in both directions, playing out primarily on the middle palate. Despite the interest in its fruit, it’s not a fruit-forward wine, and there’s pleasing restraint in all respects here. The downside of this is an intensity of flavour that could be greater. Other flavours, including a nice snapped twig note, continue on to a finish that is lightly touched by fine tannins.
For the price, this is quite excellent and a wine I’d be happy to buy again.