At £6 a bottle, this Portuguese red from the Lisbon region isn't bargain basement, I know, but it's here for a reason. Which is that it marks a change of direction for the 37 remaining branches of Oddbins which went belly up earlier this year.
It used to sell for £6.75 which, since duty and VAT as well as other costs have gone up in the meantime, reflects a significant reduction. No longer are Oddbins going to base their pricing on the fact that you get 20% off if you buy six bottles, I was told by the temporary manager of our local store in Bristol. And there are to be no weaselly 99p's hence it being priced at a clear and honest £6.
The wine, which is made from local Portuguese grape varieties - a blend of Castelão, Camarale, Tinta Miuda and Touriga Nacional, since you ask - is soft, appealing and brambly, a good wine to have around for the autumn days ahead. It would be good with sausage and mash, stronger cheeses like cheddars and blues and even a meat curry like a rogan josh, I suspect.
If you've got an Oddbins nearby (you can find the list of branches here) it's a good value option. Oddbins is a pale shadow of its former self but at least it's around in some shape or form rather than leaving us entirely at the mercy of the supermarkets.