Wine of the Week: Aldi's £5.99 Beachfront Pinot Noir 2016 - WineUncorked: Wine Reviews and Tips

The classic flavour combination of creamy cherry with Bovril indicates a high-quality red wine made with the Pinot Noir grape variety. Which is what makes this wine stand out from the other nine wines in Aldi's Californian Beachfront range.

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Designed to be similar in looks and flavour to Barefoot's range of slightly sweet wines made to be 'enjoyed by everyone from first-time wine consumers to hard-core aficionados', Aldi's Beachfront range too are made from well-known grape varieties that have a slightly sweet edge that makes them easy to like - particularly with a bottle price of under £5.

Except the Pinot Noir. This one stands out not only with its higher price of £5.99 but also because the label shows that this wine is a vintage - that is a wine made from grapes picked in one year (2016) rather than a blend of wines of various years (non-vintage) where no year is shown on the label.

While non-vintage wines tend to be cheaper and more consistent in flavour a wine showing a vintage date varies in flavour because what the weather did that year can affect the flavour and quality of the picked grapes.

The Beachfront Pinot Noir is made with grapes picked and made into wine in 2016 - which is great news as Californian vineyards that year saw a bumper crop of high-quality grapes that produced wines capable of ageing.

So, what can you expect from the Beachfront Pinot Noir 2016 if you keep it in a consistently cool place for another 5 years?

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You can get an idea of how the flavour might change by analysing what it tastes like now at 5 years-old - the initial fresh fruity flavours have started to taste more intense and creamy while extra meaty (Bovril) notes have appeared. At ten years of age the fresh fruity flavours will have completely disappeared and be replaced with a raisin taste while the Bovril bit will have been added to with mushroom, vegetable and possibly even earthy flavours that some liken to manure.

This may not be a flavour you want to drink yourself but plenty of wine connoisseurs do - and are willing to pay for it. Similar wines are currently selling at up to £55 a bottle.

The Beachfront Pinot Noir 2016 is a Limited Edition meaning you'll need to get it while you can. But if you can't there a few other supermarket Pinot Noirs worthy of checking out.

Pinot Noir recommended by

Aldi's Beachfront Pinot Noir 2016

£5.99 Aldi

four stars


The classic flavour combination of creamy cherry with Bovril indicates a high-quality red wine made with the Pinot Noir grape variety. Capable of ageing another five years.


Co-op Irresistible 30 degree Chilean Pinot Noir 2019

£7 Co-op

four stars


All the classic Pinot Noir flavours are here - fresh cherry, chocolate and coffee with a touch of spicy liquorice. There's enough mouth-watering acidity and oakiness to make this a good food match.


Doudet-Naudin French Pinot Noir 2018

£7.25 Co-op

four stars


This tasty red smells of smoky blackberry and cherry but is light in the mouth with a tinge of Marmite.


Sainsbury's Taste The Difference Chilean Pinot Noir 2019

£7.50 Sainsbury's

five stars


A great wine with flavours of cherry and plum followed by darker nuances of coffee and rosemary.


Morrisons The Best Wild Ferment Single Vineyard Chilean Pinot Noir 2019

£8 Morrisons

four stars


Underneath the Morrisons label is the top Chilean winery Errazuriz - making this a great value example at £8. The 'wild ferment' description tells us that the wine was fermented not with the usual commercially bought yeast but rather wild strains of yeast brought in from the vineyard and shown as a dusty bloom on the grapes. These wild yeasts can be tricky to control and the resulting wine can either be yuk or great. This one is great. Flavours of strawberry and raspberry along with deeper notes of burnt toast, chocolate and cherry.


M&S Pheasant Gully Pinot Noir 2020

£7 M&S

three stars


This Australian Pinot Noir won't suit everyone's taste as there's quite a strong black coffee bitter flavour with added burnt toast. There is fruity strawberry jam and a herby note. If you like cool climate French red Burgundy that's also made with Pinot Noir then you'll like this too.


The Wine Society's Chilean Pinot Noir 2020

£7.95 The Wine Society

three stars


Aromas and flavours of cherry with an earthy background plus a touch of gravy. A classic Pinot Noir.



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About WineUncorked and its editor, Paula Goddard Read more