£3.59 Aldi wine thumps £30 competition

How can a £3.59 bottle of wine out-taste other wines that sell for £30 plus? All hail the Spanish Toro Loco Tempranillo 2011, an own label red from German discount supermarket Aldi.

This unassuming red beat several French Grand Crus in taste tests at the International Wine & Spirit Competition. You'll need to race to a store to snap up as demand is likely to be huge.

Corking value

If you find the shelves empty, despair not. That's because the German supermarket bagged several other awards at the competition - "an unprecedented haul of 18 medals at the awards, which are recognised as being some of the toughest in the wine industry calendar," Aldi said in a press statement.

The full list - a mixture of bronze and silver awards, including a 2010 Shiraz for £3.49, a Cava Brut for £4.48 and a £6.99 Prosecco - is below. Aldi is increasingly making sales ripples in the UK as consumer unhappiness with larger chains such as Morrisons and Tesco grows.

Sour grapes for competition?

This is reflected in the latest Kantar Worldpanel sales figures, revealed this week. Aldi saw 25.4% market growth in the 12 weeks up to 13 May 2012, achieving a total market share of 2.8% (a record); Lidl saw 11.3% growth, enabling it to hang onto its existing market share, also 2.8%. Both Tesco and Morrisons saw their share of the market dip.

This isn't the first time Aldi has made waves in terms of sales of alcohol. Last year Aldi caused a stir when it sold a 40-year single malt for under £50 - a limited edition Speyside scotch from an unnamed Scottish distillery.

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£3.59 Aldi wine thumps £30 competition

This takes time, but once you know the cost of a phone call, putting the dryer on, or a bag of potatoes, it enables you to judge far better how much you can afford to consume.

Once you know the base price, you are in a position to keep your eyes open for a better offer. If you see a discount you can judge for yourself whether it actually constitutes a bargain. For bigger things like utilities it enables you to do a proper price comparison and see if you can cut your bills.

Don't just assume that the premium range is better, try the every-day brand, or even the basic version and see if you spot the difference. Likewise, consider trading down your supermarket from one of the big players to local markets or discounters like Aldi.

If you plan what you buy to match what you actually cook and eat then not only will you be able to budget far more effectively, but you'll also waste much less and find your money goes further without you having to try.

If you can't think of a way to get your meat for less, consider a vegetarian day once a week. If you can't find petrol any cheaper, then work on making your driving as efficient as possible. The more you can think of clever alternatives the less you will have to make painful cuts to make ends meet.


Silver Awards

International Wine & Spirit Competition 2012
Toro Loco Tempranillo 2011 (£3.59) – Silver
Amador Cava Brut NV (£4.48) – Silver
Cantina Colli Valdobbiadene Prosecco Spumante DOCG Extra Dry NV (£6.99) – Silver
Philippe Michel Crémant du Jura Chardonnay 2009 (£6.99) – Silver

Bronze Awards

Grapevine Merlot 2011 (£2.99) – Bronze
Budávar Chardonnay 2011 (£3.29) – Bronze
Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC 2011 (£3.49) – Bronze
La Tinta Shiraz 2010 (£3.49) – Bronze
Côtes du Rhône 2011 (£3.57) – Bronze
Toro Loco Rosé 2011 (£3.59) – Bronze
Bordeaux Blanc 2011 (£4.19) – Bronze
Viña Decana Crianza 2009 (£4.19) – Bronze
Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2006 (£5.99) – Bronze
Champagne Philizot Brut Numéro 3 (£12.99) – Bronze

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