With aspirational thrift the name of the game among UK winos, it’s worthwhile checking out Ned Halley’s supermarket wine guide called the Best Wines in the Supermarkets 2009 (£8). Is this the same Ned Halley who penned the Complete Prophesies of Nostradamus (Wordsworth Reference Library, 1999)? I do hope so! Anyway, of the 2000 wines evaluated, 27 rate 10/10 and of these two hail from South Africa and both are Fairtrade wines.
You’ll search Platter in vain for Marks & Spencer’s Fairtrade Maara Shiraz 2007. “At last a Fairtrade wine about which I can rave objectively. This has a direct, briary fruit without a hint of the sunburnt rubberiness that ruins too many budget Cape reds, and long, consistent flavours with 14 per cent alcohol. Exemplary in every way.” A steal at £5.49.
Even cheaper at £5.15 is the So Organic Fairtrade South African Cabernet Sauvignon 2007. “Deep-purple colour, whiff of caramel, softly ripe cassis fruit, long and mellow, clean, lipsmacking finish. All this and its also Fairtrade, organic and made without added sulphur products (very rare). A thoroughly modern wine, a great pleasure to drink and a true bargain.” This wine is so rare, it’s not even listed on Ned’s online notes www.askdaisy.net/bestwinesuk. Both of these gems are rated “a perfect 10.”
21 SA wines in total get the nod from Ned and they’re mostly brands you’ve never heard of like Houdamond, Lions Hill and Darracott.