M&S launches £5 wine range... maybe lockdown isn't so bad after all?
The new range is aimed at new wine fans who want to try all the classics
M&S has released a range of 15 wines, including spicy reds, blushing roses and tropical whites, and almost every bottle costs just a fiver.
This is perfect for those long, lockdown evenings, when one glass quickly becomes two, and subsequently four... or five. When you're working on that kind of volume, at a certain point economy has to become a factor.
I jest, of course. In fact, the range is aimed not at functioning alcoholics, but at new wine fans. Each new wine showcases popular styles and grape varieties, so they are ideal for people getting into wine who are looking to taste a range of classics on a tight budget.
The range is created by M&S winemakers, led by Belinda Kleinig, and has been named 'This Is'. The bold and clear name is intended to reflect the educative approach; these aren't 'modern twists' or 'exciting new varieties' – they're the classics, done properly, for cheap.
The labelling on the bottles is designed to show exactly what kind of wine they contain, meaning folks who can't tell their Rioja from their Merlot don't need to resort to picking the fanciest looking label. Instead, they can read the guidance on taste, styles and grape varieties.
So what's in the collection?
Here's the full roster:
This Is French White, 2019, £5
This Is Italian Pinot Grigio, 2019, £5
This Is Italian Red, 2019, £5
This Is Fruity White, 2019, £5
This Is Spanish Red, 2019, £5
This Is Chile Sauvignon Blanc, 2019, £5
This Is Chile Cabernet Sauvignon, 2019, £5
This Is Chile Merlot, 2019, £5
This Is Argentina Chardonnay, 2019, £5
This Is Argentina Malbec, 2019, £5
This Is Australia Shiraz, 2019, £5
This Is South Africa Chenin Blanc, 2019, £5
This Is Spanish Rose, 2019, £5
This Is Italian Sparkling , NV, £6
This Is Italian Sparkling Rose, NV, £6
As you can see, these are mainly a fiver, which is remarkably good. Cheap wine is no new thing, but the company's approach towards this release suggests that these are good value wines, and not just bottom shelf plonk. It's long been said that own-brand wine is the best way to go if you're after the cheap stuff, so it seems likely that these will be a great choice.
There's a couple of £6 bottles, if you want to push the boat out. These include a crisp Italian sparkling wine with floral notes and hints of pear. Sounds delicious, but it's a bit of a shame they haven't managed to get some proper DOC Prosecco, considering it's often available for £6-8 in other supermarkets.
You can pick up these new wines at M&S Foodhalls, which are still open during lockdown.