By Theo Thimou, clarkhoward.com
When you think of fine wines, you probably don’t think of Walmart. But maybe you should!
Despite its down market reputation, the world’s largest retailer was just honored with a prestigious wine award that is the envy of every other vintner.
Walmart wine’s big win
La Moneda Reserva Malbec is a house brand sold by Walmart’s U.K. grocery chainAsda. This tasty merlot sells for the equivalent of around $6.20.
You might think this vino would be a real stinker, but La Moneda Reserva Malbec actually won Platinum Best in Show honors at the Decanter World Wine Awards.
Asda’s website says that, “This Malbec has a deep purple colour with violet tints, rounded and velvety tannins, complex plum, fig, strawberry, spices flavours and excellent length.”
According to London’s Daily Mirror newspaper, the merlot beat out 16,000 other wines in a blind taste test that involved 240 international wine experts!
Judges raved about the taste of “freshly crushed black fruit, creamy vanilla yoghurt and pepper spice,” and they praised its “succulent juicy berries on the palate.”
They also noted the “excellent freshness” with a zing that was “full of energy with a great price point” and called it “an absolute crowd pleaser.”
Now for the bad news: Even though Asda will sell you the wine direct from their website, they’re all sold out right now. So keep checking back!
Here are some other cheap wines that get high marks
If you can’t get your hands on a bottle of La Moneda Reserva Malbec, there are a lot of other great choices out there that are available domestically and won’t bust your budget.
Two Buck Chuck – $2.49
Also known as Charles Shaw wine, this super cheap yet tasty vino was introduced in 2002 and customers were immediately smitten by the $1.99 price point and quality.
As for the taste? Of Two Buck Chuck merlot, one sommelier noted the following:
“This one has just a little more intensity to the color for me. When I smell it I also start to introduce the idea of ground black pepper. When you smell it, you should think about it like nestling your nose in a furry chinchilla…If I hadn’t seen the labels of all eight beforehand, I’d take this for a cheap impersonation of a Loire Cabernet Franc.”
Of course, today Two Buck Chuck is no longer $1.99. Now it sells for anywhere from $2.49 to $3.79, depending on location. “Two” bad, right?!
Spring Creek – $3.50ish
Dollar General has its own house brand of wine called Spring Creek. While it’s not quite as cheap as Trader Joe’s Two Buck Chuck, the reviews are pretty good!
“Even my wine snob friends who have been to Napa were shocked. My family tasted wine across Italy and thought it was very good. My faves are the Merlot and Riesling. The Pink Moscato is sweet, but very nice.” – Mary
“The texture of this wine is about the same as grape juice so it’s highly drinkable. I’m guessing it has a very low alcohol content, but I don’t know for sure, so don’t knock it back like it’s actually grape juice.” – Savanah Mandeville of the Wine Pursuit