A few wine reviews today from three bottles we tried earlier this month.
Kicking us off is the 2015 Recchia Red Bardolino from Waitrose that comes in at 12.5%. The label is minimalist yet stylish and the aromas from the wine are light berries, particularly sharp blackberries. Tasting without food it is a very nice and drinkable wine, almost refreshing and very summery. We then had the wine with some Greek salad and Lamb and it was just as good. Overall it is a lovely wine to drink on its own or with food and also very reasonably priced at £7.99.
Next up is Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference White Gavi from 2016 and at 12.5%. It has a classy label and lovely aromas of elderflower and peach. The taste without food was dry but also refereeing with low acidity and overall very easy to drink. We then had the wine with roast chicken and the flavours really burst forth and improved the wine immeasurably. Overall it is a good wine to have with the appropriate food and not badly priced at £8.
Last and unfortunately least is another Sainsbury’s wine, the Marques de Montino Rioja from 2015 at 13%. It has a nice traditional label and a light aroma of strawberries. The taste without food was slightly sharp but quite well rounded. We then had the wine alongside the pasta and it softened the taste a bit but there was no measurable improvement. Overall the wine is fine and reasonably priced at £5.50 but I did expect better and I won’t be buying again.
Pitlochry is a special place for me, having been there numerous times during my childhood and when I lived in Scotland a couple of year ago. Although special to me for nostalgic reasons, it is also an excellent place to visit in its own right. If you do decide to go to Pitlochry it is worth going for a long weekend, or if you are exploring the wider area it might be worth using it as a base for a week.
Pitlochry is in the heart of Scotland, just before you reach the Highlands. It is in North Perthsire, approximately a 1hr 40min drive from Edinburgh and Glasgow. You can also reach it by train from Edinburgh.
Part of what makes Pitlochry such a good place to visit is what it is nearby:
The Cairngorms are just to the North
Perth is only 45 mins away
Blair Atholl is 15 mins away with attractions including a castle, working mill and the excellent House of Bruar
The lovely town of Aberfeldy is 25 mins away
Loch Tummel is just to the West with some excellent views and walks
Pitlochry isn’t a huge town but it has enough to keep anyone entertained and well-fed for a while. The high street has numerous shops and restaurants as well as more mundane (but essential) facilities such as good car parking, a post office and a petrol station.
Shopping highlights on my last trip there (early 2016) included:
As for accomodation, the one place I can recommend is where we stayed on our last overnight trip – Craigatin House B&B. It is easily one of the best B&Bs I’ve every stayed in, with excellent rooms and fantastic breakfasts. The owners and staff were also very helpful and friendly. Highly recommended
What to Do
As noted above there are lots of places near Pitlochry to do things but there are also plenty of places you can walk to in and very near the Town. My favourites are
Black Spout Wood and Waterfall – we had a lovely walk round here in the autumn and the waterfall was amazing.
Blair Athol Distillery – the home of Bells Whisky. We had a great guided tour round here with an excellent guide. Worth checking out the single malt of Blair Athol whilst you are here.
My Wife and I took to drinking a lot of Red Wine in a rainy spring until the English Summer finally got round to appearing. During that time we had three excellent and highly recommended red wines.
The first was the excellent 2015 Cabalie from France at 13%. It has a stylish label and has a lovely aroma of fruits, particularly blackcurrants. The taste both with and without food was fruity and peppery and just a very pleasant drink. It is one of the few red wines I would buy simply to drink on its own.
Next up is The Holdings 2015 Syrah Malbec; a lovely 13% red from Argentina. The label is a bit of an odd one but I think it works in its own way. The aroma is of strong red fruits and the taste was dry, lightly fruity but also slightly sharp. We had the wine with a steak and it went really well with it. I would buy again to have alongside red meat.
Last but by no means least, the 2014 El Bombero; a 15% red from Spain. The label screams Spanish at you and the aroma is juicy berries and vanilla. Both with and without food it is smooth, rich and a little bit spicy. It is though very easy to drink and I would buy again to drink for any meal appropriate to have red wine alongside.
Every now and again my wife and I decide to try some wines from Aldi or Lidl and unfortunately we usually end up being disappointed. We tried against last month with the 2015; a rose at 12.5%.
The label is no frills and basic and the smell is lightly floral and red berries. So far so good but it all falls apart with the taste. I expect to be able to drink a rose on its own quite happily but unfortunately the acidity of the wine overpowered all other tastes. On a second taste it was slightly better but no a drink I would choose optionally.
We then had the wine alongside some pesto chicken and Mediterranean roasted vegetables; unfortunately the wine now tastes like cheap perfume. In conclusion I have to say this is a no recommendation!