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Jan 24

Aldi Does Sell Wines and they’re a Great Purchase

by Angela

A couple of weeks ago Cresta shared with us that Aldi Grocery stores sell wines. I thought I would check it out, and what I found was a pretty great deal. I purchased 4 different bottles of wines from Aldi all priced under $7; none of the other wines were over $9. Here’s my reviews of the 4 wines I purchased.

  • Landshut Riesling $5.99 – Had a wonderful floral bouquet with tastes of honey and sweet melon. I would have to agree with Cresta that this is a very sweet Riesling but this would be perfect if your having asian spicy foods. This wine would pair with spicy Thai foods, hearty seafood stew, or served as a great desert wine.
  • Villa Malizia Pinot Grigio $5.99 – A very light and crisp Pinot Grigio that had tastes of citrus and pear. It actually tasted better after it warmed up a little. (I decided stop chilling and drink it at room temperature.) This is a great summer wine that you can pair with salads, fish dishes, and light pasta dishes. I really enjoyed this Pinot Grigio.
  • Gonfalone Chianti $6.79 – This is not your typical Chianti, it was very light but with some tannins and had tastes of smoke and leather. It was light like a Pinot Noir but had some characteristics of a Syrah. I personally didn’t enjoy it BUT if you are into a light Pinot Noir then this is your bottle to buy.
  • Toca Diamonte Malbec $5.99 – This by far was my favorite one. The bouquet was black cherry and a hint of floral and tastes of clove, oak, berry, and black cherry. I really enjoyed this wine, I wanted to grill a steak after having a few sips of the wine. This would definitely compliment a great steak, hearty pasta dishes, or just drank alone with friends. If you’re into big hearty wines this is a great one for the price.

I can’t wait to go back and try other wines that Aldi has to offer. If you have an Aldi Grocery store in your neighborhood just remember you can pick up some wine for dinner while you’re grocery shopping.

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Jul 23

Recession Wines: Tips and Tricks (Repost)

In honor of BlogHer and the Food (and Wine) Blogging in a Recession panel, I'm re-posting my original Recession Wine Tips & Tricks – originally from the end of 2008. Cheers!

WinesaleAdmit it folks, the economy has got you down. Here we are, moving into
a new year, and all they can talk about on the news is war and
depression. It's enough to send you into a bottle – but those bottles
are expensive! Oh what to do?

Fear not, Wine-Girl is coming to the rescue. At
the beginning of 2009, we'll be launching a new occasional series called Recession Wines.

Every so often, we'll review a low-cost wine – preferably under $10, but definitely under $15. Remember my $10 and Under
post from October? You had some great suggestions for us in those
comments. I would love it if you'd add even more to this post. (Or
email me. I know, you all are tentative about comments but you love the

In the meantime, I want to offer out two different tips for drinking wine when the money is tight:

  • Enjoy those wine tastings. As I often say, wine tastings in
    Kentucky are free. In Ohio, they are generally less than $5, usually
    around $1. Heck, Bigg's Skytop offers a gourmet meal of samples as well
    as full pours of 5-6 wines each week for only $10. And you can split a
    tasting with someone else. Tastings are a great way to get to know what
    wines you like. In many cases, they will be low-cost wines anyway. In
    other cases, you'll be getting to try wines you might never afford in
    other circumstances. So go out there and enjoy the tastings!  Don't
    forget to take notes so that you can buy those wines later, when a
    paycheck is just burning a hole in your purse.
  • Closeouts. Oh, what a spectacular deal are closeouts! At
    Liquor Direct, they have an entire wall of closeouts – 2 for $10, 3 for
    $20. At Party Source, just ask someone. They will show you excitedly
    what is on closeout. You see, closeouts aren't necessarily bad wine or
    old wine. In many cases, closeouts are when a winery is redesigning a
    label or when a distributor is dropping a wine. Jump on these. Don't be
    afraid to ask at your local wine shop. In my experience, the retailers
    are just as excited about the closeouts as you are, and eager to share.
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Posted by Michelle at 2:00 pm in Recession Wine | Permalink | Comments ()
Feb 19

A Passion for Piedmont, Part 1 (Recession Wine!)

This post is a little late, but for Wine Blogging Wednesday the theme was Passionate Piedmont – wines from the Piedmont area of Italy. This is the first of two entries. (The other will go up rather late this evening.)

Beni di Batasiolo 2006 Barbera d'Alba

We started out with a Barbera, a very common grape in Piedmont. The Beni di Batasiolo is a 100% Barbera wine from the Alba area in Piedmont. I think I paid $8.99 (on sale from $9.99) for this bottle at Liqour Direct. For an $8.99 bottle, it's our Recession Wine of the week.

The color is a nice dark ruby. On the nose, we got a lot of blackberry. Kevin also got cedar, and I agree. I also got some cinnamon on there. These scents carried through on the tongue too. There was a lot of wood – but not really oak: more cedar and hickory. Those woody flavors were intermingled with dark berries, including a bit of sour blackberry on the finish. (That tastes better than it sounds.) I also found a lot of fun spices, first some cinnamon, but then a bit of oriental-style spices as well. Finally, there were nice, gentle tannins and as the wine opened up a bit, I even got a bit of chocolate in there.

For less than $10, this is a nice full red – I'd call it a steal.

Our rating:

Thanks to McDuff's Food & Wine Trail for hosting this edition of Wine Blogging Wednesday!

Part 2: Once Upon a Time (Principessa Gavia Gavi)

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Posted by Michelle at 5:24 pm in Recession Wine, Tastings, WBW, Wine Notes | Permalink | Comments (1)
Feb 12

Think Pink / Recession Wine: 2007 La Vieille Ferme Rosé

All this week, we'll be reviewing rosés in honor of Valentine's
Day. I consider rosé a misunderstood wine that can be excellent. Sadly,
too many
rosés are still sugary sweet. Rosé is more than white zinfandel or cheap blush, but a full-fledged wine style in itself. This week, we'll explore dry rosé, one of my favorite types of wine. All the wines in this series are under $15, most are under $10.


I love a great rosé. I love one more when it's just an everyday, affordable table wine. La Vieille Ferme (translates to "the old farm") 2007 Rosé is just that. I paid $7.59 at Liqour Direct for this one. I always call it the "chicken wine" because of the chicken and rooster on the label. This isn't the first time I've tried this rosé, and liked it, but it is the first time for this vintage. 

This rosé is has a nice color that reminds me of a watermelon. It's a combination of 40% grenache, 10% syrah, and 50% cinsault. Cinsault? It's a hardy, and popular red grape in France. It's often used in blends, as it is here. This particular wine is from the Côtes du Ventoux region of the Rhône Valley.

The nose is full of fun berries and flowers. In particular, I smelled roses. I hate when I smell roses in rosé, as it seems like a cliche. But they're in there, I swear.

I really liked this wine. It's well balanced and well structured. It actually takes up space in your mouth and announces it's arrival with an explosion of berries. Which ones? Well, it's like someone took a bunch of fun red berries – strawberries, definitely cranberries, cherries, and maybe a few raspberries – and then blended them all together in a food processor. But there's also a nice tartness and good acidity to cut through all that berry goodness. In fact, it's a rather crisp wine. I even got a bit of spice on the midpalate – I think it might have been black licorice. Finally, this wine has a nice, relaxing finish of melon.

If you're tentative about rosé, or you're convinced it's all sickeningly sweet or, heaven forbid, white zinfandel, then try this one. You'll be out less than $10 and you might just enjoy it. It's dry without the tannins and fruity without the sugar. You might be surprised that you, too, can think pink.

At less than $8, this is our recession wine of the week.


Think Pink Rosé Series

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Posted by Michelle at 8:33 am in Recession Wine, Tastings, Wine Notes | Permalink | Comments (2)
Jan 29

Recession Tip: Staff Favorites Tasting, Liquor Direct

This weekend there are some nifty Staff Favorites tastings occurring at both Liquor Direct locations. I got this email from their "wine guy" Kevin Keith:

So far, we’ve got heavy
hitters from Jorge Ordonez, Torbreck, Orin Swift and Hendry.  The staff’s
limitations are the best wine they can find under $50, already in our store,
and in good supply.  We invite everyone to come check these out – after all,
it’s free.

Staff Favorite tastings are always a great way to try some higher-end wines that you might not always get to taste. Hey!  That makes these tastings Recession Tips! Go try expensive wines for free! 

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Posted by Michelle at 7:40 am in Recession Wine, Tastings, Wine Shops | Permalink | Comments ()

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