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best Sainsbury’s wines Best Sainsbury’s wines to try – Decanter

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A recent tasting of wines from Sainsbury’s spring/summer 2024 selection showcased bottles that are ideal for warmer days and alfresco socialising. They range from crisp, fresh whites such as Albariño and Picpoul de Pinet to rosés and light reds that can be chilled. You’ll also find food-friendly bottles that are ideal for barbecues or perfect for a picnic.

As usual, the supermarket’s own-label Taste the Difference range does a great job of covering many classic regions and styles at affordable prices. The buying team has curated a selection that includes a ripe, fruity Chilean Pinot Noir and an elegant Muscadet from France’s Loire Valley – great with seafood and fish. Grab a bottle of the Taste the Difference Mâcon-Villages Vielles Vignes 2022 if you see it in store – a great value Burgundy for just £17 (see below for tasting notes).

‘Burgundy is a region not usually known for good value wines, however this really delivers due to sourcing from old vine plots only, and offers superior quality compared to many named village wines at this price point,’ says Richard Maltby, winemaker for Sainsbury’s.

Discover something different…

Meanwhile the sixth Discovery Collection offers more hidden gems and interesting bottles for wine lovers to explore. This more adventurous, limited-edition range is always worth buying – even if you haven’t tried the wine style before. My highlight this year was the new Discovery Collection Luberon 2023 from southeastern Rhône Valley (see below for tasting note). A Rhône blend that includes Vermentino, Grenache Blanc and Ugni Blanc, it’s a steal at £12 and will certainly be found in my fridge door this summer.

I’ll also be making space for the Discovery Collection Natu’roque Bandol Rosé 2022 (£16). ‘Bandol is the jewel in the Provence crown,’ declares wine buyer Sam Glanfield. ‘Elegant in style, with a bit of age, this gastronoic rosé offers customers something quite grown-up within the category.’ If you like rosés that have more depth and flavour, this is definitely one for you (see below for tasting note).

Stars buys and value picks

The Sainsbury’s Italian range is usually strong – and this year is no exception. A new Taste the Difference Sicilian Nero d’Avola 2022 is a delightful little fruit bomb for £8.75 (see below for tasting note). ‘This Nero d’Avola is a fresh, fruity style of wine, with just a touch of Syrah blended in for richness,’ says winemaker Lisa Rogerson. ‘We have worked with Mezzacorona on this wine, which is a great addition to our Taste the Difference range and showcases the best of modern Sicilian winemaking.’

The Terre di Faiano Organic Nero di Troia 2022 (£9.50) is another new Italian red that’s worth seeking out. There’s also a new vintage of Taste the Difference Marzemino Trentino (£9.75), a wine I’ve recommended in the past. At 12% abv it’s a lighter style that you can enjoy slightly chilled this summer.

Meanwhile Sainsbury’s is competing comfortably with budget supermarkets Aldi and Lidl thanks to its value range of ‘by Sainsbury’s’ bottles. The by Sainsbury’s House Soave 2023 is a steal at £4.75 (see below for tasting note). Or try the by Sainsbury’s House Pinot Noir (£5.50) with burgers and bangers at your next barbecue.

Lower alcohol and sparkling

Both the House Soave and House Pinot Noir are 11% abv, examples of the continuing trend for low alcohol wines. Anyone watching their alcohol intake should look out for the ‘Mid-Strength’ labels that Sainsbury’s introduced last autumn. ‘We’ve led the market since the launch of our Mid-Strength range in September 2023 and we’re continuing to see an increased growth within the lower-abv category,’ says Sophie Hogg, category director for beers, wines and spirits at Sainsbury’s.

Two new own-label wines have joined the Mid-Strength range this spring. There’s a Taste the Difference Mid-Strength Val de Loire 2023 at 8.5% (£8) and a Taste the Difference Mid-Strength Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2023 at 9.5% (£7.50) made for Sainsbury’s by Yealands Estate (see below for tasting note).

Finally, if you have something to celebrate this summer, Sainsbury’s has some great fizz at prices to suit all pockets. Value choices include organic Prosecco and a vintage Taste the Difference Cava Brut 2020, that’s a gem for £8.75. But if you’re bored of Prosecco, I’d recommend its Italian cousin Pignoletto from Emilia-Romagna. Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Pignoletto NV is a top pick at just £8 (see below for tasting note).

If only Champagne will do, you can choose from big names or take a punt on Sainsbury’s reliable own-label Taste the Difference Champagne Brut NV (£22 – tasting note below). I’m a particular fan of wallet-friendly regional French crémants as well – the two bottles recommended below, from the Loire and Burgundy, are really enjoyable good value options.

Now we just have to hope that the British weather adds some sparkle to summer…


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Best Sainsbury’s wines

Tasting notes come from the Sainsbury’s spring/summer 2024 tasting. Wines from older tastings have also been included if the wine is still available in store or online. All bottle prices are correct at time of publication. 

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