Lidl Wines for Easter [Wine Review]

This Easter, Lidl Ireland is releasing some special seasonal wines from Argentina and Germany; three whites, a rosé, a sparkling rosé and a red. I recently tried six with the assistance of two old friends:

Suelo Argentino Sauvignon Blanc 2022

Suelo Argentino Sauvignon Blanc 2022 bottle shot

The twin reference points of Marlborough and Sancerre are far away from Argentina, and this example of the grape doesn’t ape either style. SB from Chile is more well known here, and although there’s a bloomin’ big mountain range between the two countries, there are considerable similarities in the wines.

On the nose this is intensely fruity, with almost confected fruits like fruit polos (do they still exist?). Those notes also appear on the palate, with juicy melon also apparent. High acidity keeps everything fresh and makes this a great wine for sipping in the sun, if we get any this Easter.

  • ABV: 12.0%
  • RRP: €9.99
  • Source: sample
  • Stockists: Lidl Ireland stores

Markus Molitor Mosel Sauvignon Blanc 2022

Markus Molitor Mosel Sauvignon Blanc 2022 bottle shot

Sauvignon from Germany, Austria and further east is rarely seen here in Ireland, but I have found a recognisable style amongst those that have made it to these ahores: dry, herbal and savoury. This effort from high end producer Markus Molitor certainly fits that bill, though the nose and the first sip have a Riesling-like quality to them. While that’s no bad thing in my book, could it be due to the Mosel’s famous slate soils?

I’m not sure if this wine would be loved by the casual Sauvignon drinker, but it’s very interesting and certainly a different take on the grape. For me it would be best with a light salad, though I’m sure cheese fans would also recommend a goat’s cheese tart.

  • ABV: 12.0%
  • RRP: €13.99
  • Source: sample
  • Stockists: Lidl Ireland stores

Markus Molitor Mosel Riesling Feinherb 2022

Markus Molitor Mosel Riesling Feinherb 2022 bottle shot

So now we have the real deal, Mosel Riesling, but Riesling with a decent whack of residual sugar, signaled by the “Feinherb” designatation in the name. Of course, the measured RS in grams per litre only tells part of the story: acidity is the other part. So important is acidity in apparent sweetness, that some German labelling regulations – such as “Halbtrocken” – have different RS maxima for low, medium and high acidity wines. Feinherb escapes such prescriptions, but is usually used for wines a little sweeter than Halbtrocken.

Judicious sweetness like this comes across much more as fruitiness than as sugary sweetness: balance is the key. The nose is awesomely aromatic, as a good Riesling should be, with floral and lime notes. This is a tasty wine; just ensure that it’s kept well chilled.

  • ABV: 10.5%
  • RRP: €12.99
  • Source: sample
  • Stockists: Lidl Ireland stores

Suelo Argentino Malbec Rosé 2022

Suelo Argentinian Malbec Rosé 2022 bottle shot

It might seem a waste to make rosé with Malbec, but as the red wines are on the lighter side (see below) it isn’t a huge leap to making a pink wine. This rosé has a little more colour than Provence-style rosés which are en vogue these days, but that’s fine with me. It’s a cheerful, fun wine with dark red fruits and a dry finish. It’s fairly straight forward, but for a tenner in Ireland it’s good value for money.

  • ABV: 13.0%
  • RRP: €9.99
  • Source: sample
  • Stockists: Lidl Ireland stores

Suelo Argentino Malbec 2022

Suelo Argentinian Malbec 2022 bottle shot

Malbec is of course Argentia’s signature black grape, but this is a slightly different style from the Malbecs that we have come to expect. Don’t get me wrong, there isn’t a single type of Argentinian Malbec, but if tasted blind I would have guessed that this came from the Loire Valley rather than South America.

The nose shows bright red fruits – raspberry, redcurrant and cherry – which continue through onto the palate. Thsi wine is only medium in body at most, but the prominent acidity makes it fresh and easy drinking. A dusting of tannins on the finish rounds it off well. Perfect for parties and barbecues.

  • ABV: 13.0%
  • RRP: €9.99
  • Source: sample
  • Stockists: Lidl Ireland stores

Deutsche Sekt Brut Rosé NV

Deutsche Sekt Brut Rosé NV bottle shot

As befitting its German origins, this is a premium German (“Deutsche”) sparkling wine (“Sekt”) made in the traditional method from German-grown grapes. It’s fully sparkling and has a cork with a cage, covered in foil, just like Champagne and Crémant from France. The front label states that it has spent 15 months on the lees, the minimum requirement for Champagne (and I’m sure that’s no coincidence.)

With no further information, it fell to my senses to ascertain its qualities. It pops just like a bottle of posh French fizz, and shows a nice mousse in the glass. The nose is an explosion of strawberries, making me think that this is predominantly Pinot Noir-based. The strawberries continue onto the palate, joined by light, creamy lees goodness. The acidity is strong – as it should be – and stops the wine running away with itself.

This isn’t a particularly complex wine, but it’s well made and downright delicious.

  • ABV: 12.5%
  • RRP: €24.99
  • Source: sample
  • Stockists: Lidl Ireland stores


These are all wines that I would happily drink myself, and will probably pick up a few when they are in store. Trying the two contrasting Sauvignons together would make for an interesting evening, and the Riesling would be cracking with a Thai red curry, but for sheer enjoyment the sparkling is the one that I would make a trip to pick up.


Five Festive Flagons

As we roll on towards the festive season, despite the pandemic. many of us are starting to plan which wines we want to have in stock for drinking over the Christmas period (Christmas don’t care ’bout Covid!)  Here are five wines that you should consider this Yule:

Disclosure: bottles were kindly sent as samples, but opinions remain my own

Perelada Cava Reserva Brut

I reviewed this wine just over three years ago and the salient points of that article remain valid:

  • There’s a lot of very ordinary Cava out there, at very low prices (often €12 or less)
  • Small-scale, renowned producers such as Llopart and Raventos i Blanc are available from around €30 upwards in Ireland (and are usually better than any Champagnes down at that price)
  • That leaves a big gap in the market between the two price points which is neatly filled by Perelada

This Reserva Brut bottling is made from the traditional three Cava grapes: Macabeo (30%), Xarel·lo (45%) and Parellada (25%) with 15 months maturation on the lees – significantly more than the nine months minimum for Cava.  It’s highly aromatic, just a delight to sniff, but very attractive on the palate with apple, pear and citrus notes.  The finish is crisp, perhaps a little dry for some tastes (though not mine).

When to drink: This would be a great start to Xmas morning, good enough to sip on its own, with nibbles or even a smoked salmon starter.

  • ABV: 11.5%
  • RRP: €20
  • Stockists: The Drink Store, Stoneybatter D7 / Higgins Off Licence, Clonskeagh / Jus de Vine, Portmarnock, Fine Wines O/L Group.

Fontanafredda Gavi di Gavi 2019

Amongst a group of my friends we have a running joke that one (Gosia) would often select Gavi di Gavi from a wine list when there were other, more interesting, options available.  This wine shows that joke to be hollow as it’s a cracking wine, full of flowers and spicy pear on the nose, sensual texture on the palate and soft stone fruit flavours.  There’s a racy acidity to the wine but it isn’t lean, just refreshing.

When to drink: With shellfish, white fish or even lighter poultry.

  • ABV: 14.5%
  • RRP: €20 – €21
  • Stockists: Redmonds of Ranelagh; Martins Off Licence, Fairview; D-SIX Wines, Harolds Cross

Trapiche Malbec Reserva Malbec 2019

Trapiche have several different quality levels within their line-up, including the excellent Terroir Series Ambrosia Single Vineyard Malbec which I reviewed here.  This Reserva is a more of an everyday wine, but is true to its variety with bold plum and blackberry fruits and a touch of vanilla.  It’s an easy-going red that doesn’t hit the heights but hits the spot with a steak.

When to drink: With red meat or just with your feet up in front of the TV

  • ABV: 13.5%
  • RRP: €13 – €15
  • Stockists: Dunnes Stores; Nolans Supermarket, Clontarf

Mommessin Domaine de la Presle Fleurie 2018

Fleurie is Ireland’s favourite Beaujolais Cru by some distance, perhaps helped by the easily pronounceable name.  It’s a relatively light Cru so sits as a happy medium in depth of colour.  The nose shows a variety of cherries, blueberries and red table grape skins.  On the palate we find freshly-made home-made jam from a variety of red and black fruits, a little garden thyme and pencil shavings.  On it’s own I thought it a good but not great wine, but when my wife tried it with extra mature cheddar she though it magnificent – the fruit of the wine counters the saltiness of the cheese and the cheese softens the acidity of the wine.  As a non-cheese eater I will take her word for it!

When to drink: With hard cheese, charcuterie, wild boar sausages, venison, duck, or nut roast

  • ABV: 13.0%
  • RRP: €18 – €20
  • Stockists: Fine Wines Off Licence; The Drink Store, Stoneybatter; Nolans Supermarket, Clontarf; Kellers Carry Out, Nenagh.

Boutinot La Côte Sauvage Cairanne 2017

Cairanne only became a named village or Cru in its own right a few years ago, though 20% of the land was effectively demoted at the same time (1,088 hectares of the original 1,350 survived the increased standards).  Being in the Southern Rhône this is a GSM blend, consisting of Grenache Noir (60%), Syrah (20%), Mourvèdre (10%) and Carignan (10%).  The minor grapes add considerable colour as the wine is darker than many Grenache based wines.  Their influence is felt on the nose, too, which has rich black fruit and spice, something like blackberry crumble in a glass.  These notes continue through to the palate which is velvety and powerful.  This is heady stuff, perfect for Xmas or winter celebrations.

When to drink: With friends, family, or on your own.  Treat yourself!

  • ABV: 14.5%
  • RRP: €23
  • Stockists: Jus de Vine, Portmarnock; La Touche Wines, Greystones; Martins, Fairview; The Drink Store, Stoneybatter; Fine Wines O/L Group