There has been some news recently about two $2AUD cleanskin wines being offered by a major supermarket chain here in Australia.
I decided to see what a $2 wine tastes like and to put it into a blind test against another wine. My girlfriend Anjuli poured the $2 wine and a $15 wine in another room and brought me the glasses.
The $15 wine was purchased last year and is a 2001 Cabernet Merlot from Margaret River, the $2 wine was purchased this week and is a 2006 Cabernet Merlot South East Australian blend with code WE3. Despite the difference in age, I still feel it is a valid comparison of two wines that you can walk into a store and buy at similar periods of time at the different price points.
Both wines bottled under screwcap and both tasted from Riedel 'O' Series Cabernet/Merlot glasses. The $15 wine is 14.5% alcohol and the $2 wine is 13.5%.
This really smells like Cabernet - tobacco, briar, blackcurrant, black olives, liquorice and well integrated dusty and cedary French oak. In a totally different flavour spectrum to sample B, much more savoury black fruits showing through. A balanced palate that has good texture, firm tannins and very good length. I think this is probably the $15 wine and for my taste it is streets ahead of the cleanskin with much greater depth and interest. 90/100
A bright, fresh fruit driven nose of dominant apricots as well as cherry and plum. The palate is driven almost entirely by juicy fruit sweetness, it is of medium length and it offers no depth of flavour, it is very linear right across the palate. Tastes like a "Generic Medium Bodied Red Wine", but it is without major faults and pretty easy to drink if you don't want to think about it. I am sure that this is the cleanskin and I've had worse wines that have cost $100, let alone $2. 85/100
Anjuli unveiled the bottles and Sample A was the $15 wine and Sample B was the $2. As I expected, but the $2 wine put up a decent enough fight and I'm sure some people (though not on this forum I expect) would prefer it.