How the supermarket wine reviews stacked up last year

Article date: 15 January 2016

Magnifying glass over supermarket wine

It was another good year for English wine. Recommendations were up three-fold, 80 percent of which were for sparkling. And it’s a trend set to continue this year as more English wines are stocked by more superamarkets.

French wine got the most reviews – more than double the next most popular country, Spain. New countries included Uruguay and Canada.

Aldi and Lidl didn’t improve on the number of recommendations from 2014. But both out-performed Morrisons (one of the “big four”). Lidl focused on French classics (Bordeaux and Burgundy), which met with a lot of favourable press attention. Aldi’s range is more like other supermarkets, with its own label offering also getting good reviews. The question a lot of people are asking: will either of them bring out an online service this year?

Majestic changed its buying model again. Instead of asking customer to buy at least two of the same to get the best price, customers only have to buy a minimum of six – any six – to get the deal. It had a better than expected Christmas – sales were up 12%, but thanks largely to beer and gin sales. So it will be interesting to see how the mix-six strategy performs this year.

Tesco, still the largest wine retailer in the UK, didn’t get the most recommendations. That accolade fell to Waitrose: 142 recommendations, just beating M&S on 137. Those two supermarkets in particular appear to have upped their game in recent years with more diversity and better quality. In the own-label category, Asda’s Wine Atlas range did consistently well in reviews.

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