Sunday, 30 August 2015

Drinking Like Common People - Part One - The Whites

"I want to live like common people, I want to do whatever common people do"

Not my favourite kind of music, but this song is good. And it fits to this little experiment.

Every year the state monopoly publish statistics about the sales over the past year.
I have taken the 10 most sold white and red wines of 2014, bought the ones that are sold in regular bottles or, sadly, in plastic containers, but omitted the ones that only are sold in bag-in-box (3 liters) - there are some limits to how much wine I will pour down the drain...

I will start with the whites. The list is from last year so I guess that the vintage was 2013 then, but I don´t think that the difference is that large.
Here they are in backward order from number ten.

2014 Chardonnay, Robertson Winery
Number 10 on the list and 1.765.220 bottles were sold last year of this disaster. What have people done with their tasting buds? The nose is little and lightly smoky with some lemon peels. Dull but reasonable ok. But after only 30 minutes in the glass it is a complete mess with rotten cigarettes and the scent of garbage in a distance, really nice...
The taste is dry and hollow with artificial acidity and notes of cigarettes and unripe lemons. For the chain smoking crowd, I guess...
60p   (tasted 2015(08)

2014 Lindeman´s Chardonnay
This will not make my most memorable list this year, but it is actually ok. The nose is cool and somewhat anonymous with notes of grey pears, flowers and wet stones. After a while in the glass it loses some of its freshness, but it doesn´t collapse as the wine (!) above.
The taste is cool and dry with some lemon and gravel notes. Doesn´t have much character but it is sound and drinkable. Number 9 on the list and 1.839.020 bottles sold.
75p   (tasted 2015/08)

2014 Rhine Riesling/Sauvignon Blanc, Chapel Hill
Well, well, it actually gets better. Number 7 on the list and 2.135.032 bottles sold. The nose is light and spicy with notes of nettles, gooseberries and crushed rocks. A touch of smoke. Good. Keeps well in the glass.
The taste is very tight and dry with notes of lemon peel and unripe pears. A very high acidity that feels manipulated. The finish feels like chewing on blotting paper. The nose is good but the taste is strange.
77p   (tasted 2015/08)

2014 Les Fumées Blanc, Francois Lurton
Number 5 on the list is a odd one. All the other wines are cheap, but this cost 9 Euro. Not much for us hard core nerds, but the drinking common people usually scorns wine that cost that much. Lets find out what makes it so popular. The nose is a very typical Sauvignon Blanc with lots of fresh grass, red apples. gooseberries and even some cat pee. This is the only wine that gets better with the 30 minutes I gave them in the glass. Good.
The taste is dry and fresh with notes of sweet minerals. oyster shells, grass and white currants. A good acidity. Very nice. The finish is a tad short, but this I could drink. 2.639.107 bottles sold.
84p   (tasted 2015/08)

NV Castillo de Gredos
Number 3 on the list. It is sold in a one liter plastic container and 2.364.278 (equals 3.152.371 75cl bottles) were sold. Are people mad? This is not even wine. The nose smells like a blend of pear juice (the one that contains 1% pears...), soap and paint remover. There isn´t a hint of grapes here. Hideous!
The taste gives me the shills, and not the nice ones. It taste like the blend above but if you add some hair spray you get the whole mix. The worst wine (!) I have tasted for about 15 years, since a friend brought home a Cabernet from Egypt, say no more. The people responsible for this abomination should be dragged into the streets and publicly whipped.
50p   (tasted 2015/08)

2014 Foot of Africa Chenin Blanc
We have come to the end - thankfully! Number 2 on the list and 3.748.229 bottles sold. This wine is a unique one, it doesn´t have an aroma. However vigorous you swirl the glass - nothing. Even after the 30 minutes it doesn´t emerge one scent. Water smells more.
I wish that the taste would be the same, but no. It is dry and hollow with notes of unripe lemons, rotten grass and decaying flowers. The acidity is added and of the charts. Why? The finish is long and not in a good way.
61p   (tasted 2015/008)

The next post will be on the reds, and already I fear for my health...

I got to open something REALLY nice now!


  1. That was a fun initiative...! :-)

    Remember, the monopoly has the best supply of quality wine in the world.

    1. Fun maybe, but not for my intestines...:-)

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. That Castello di Gredos is not considered a weapon of mass destruction is still a mystery, it was a shock five years ago and still is:

    Les Fumées Blanc however has some qualities, I have used it as the sauce-wine of choice for years. It's perfect as a basis for shellfish soup and/or moules.

    1. "weapon of mass destruction" - good call :-) And now the NSA probably have found us when they scan the web...:-)

  4. Tanka for a good laugh! I have a 2006 Blossa Grande Année in my cellar, maybe it is possible to get below 50 points? ;-)

    1. Thanks! You can´t get below Castillo de Gredos...

  5. Hey what is going on there....??
    With the money you spend on this mouth could buy a very nice Barolo !!

    1. Expanding one´s boundaries... Not to worry, I buy Barolo too :-)

  6. Late to the party, seems I haven't missed too much.
    But, are these wines sold anywhere else in the world. I think I've seen or two on ferries that traffic Germany and/or Finland and I can imagine Lindeman's and Lurton being sold somewhere else, but are these made specially for SB? As a friend says occasionally, you would find better balance and cleaner taste in mixing Absolut with marmelade or jelly ...

    1. That sounds like a better, and cleaner blend... Don't know it they are sold outside Sweden, I hope not...