The only word I understand in the title is “Asti“, but I suppose that’s all one needs to know.
Being on a need-to-know basis with a wine has its benefits, especially an Italian wine, where there’s often so much to no, but so little to gain by knowing it.
As a clue, the word “sweet” features prominently on the bottle.
I was hoping this would be sweet or fizzy. For under £5 it seemed almost unreasonable to expect both, no matter what expectations I’d developed from a sip of Asti during my WSET course last year and the numerous recommendations I’d read over the festive period for drinking it with Christmas pudding (and other festive foodstuffs).
As it happened I was very pleased with this “Asti”, even though I couldn’t wait till puddings were served to open it.
It smelled of little but lemons, and gave me a wet nose from its explosive fizziness. The colour was a pale straw(ish), and it was very noisy.
That this light, sweet and frivolous slip of a thing can be called “wine”, alongside austere Burgundy, formidable Port and serious Sancerre almost seems a crime against good sense and good taste. But what it lacks in complexity it makes up for in sheer exuberance – and it’s not sickly, which is merciful indeed, because at such a low level of alcohol content it would be in danger of tasting like a can of Sprite if it hadn’t the subtle edges of yeasty dryness in among the juicy citrus and grape middleground.
It’s nicer than the Tesco Asti I had in my WSET class, which is the only other one I’ve ever tried. Outside that single experience, it’s so different from most other sparkling wines I’ve tried – let alone other wines – that there’s hardly a reference point.
In conclusion, this is jolly fine, damn cheap and would make a lovely glugging wine or kooky dessert wine.
Don’t serve it at weddings though – it would be far too sweet for a lot of people’s tastes.
Available from FindWine.co.uk.