MOVIES & BOOZE: Fancy a glass of wine this weekend?

Wine expert Jean Smullen joins Sean Moncrieff...

Today in Killarney we’re going to play the Wine Generation Game by featuring two white wines that hold much appeal for different generations.

Today the business world  like to demographically  categorise people in based on their date of birth.  The Baby Boomers are the generation  born from the mid 1940’s to the mid 1960’s.  Generation X  (Gen X) are those born from the mid 1960’s to the mid 1970’s.  Generation Y (or Millennials) are those born from mid 1970’s to mid 1990’s and Generation Z are the generation from 1995 to the present day.   

Why does this relate to our wine feature today?  Well its simple,  we’re looking at wine styles that they love!   Baby Boomers and Gen X are HUGE fans of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.. so we’ve got Ireland’s  biggest selling New Zealand Savvy for our group to taste today.

Gen Y/Millennials want something new… they want to experience new flavour profiles and so they like to look for less well know grape varieties… Grillo or Aglianico or Gruner Veltliner … anything that is not typically main stream.  For them.. our grape today is Cortese!

Today because it is now officially summer, we are going to taste two lovely fresh zesty wine styles that are enormously popular.   


2016 Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc €14.99

Stockists: SuperValu, Centra, Dunnes, Tesco, Carry Out, Londis, Spar, & Independent Off licence, nationwide

We’ll start with New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc,  Villa Maria is Ireland’s biggest selling New Zealand Savvy.  Villa Maria  is an enormously popular  especially when it is on offer, as this one currently is for €12.00.   

Sir George Fistonich founded Villa Maria in 1961 when he was 21 and 56 years later, Villa Maria is exported to 50 countries worldwide.   By virtue of its age, this is the ultimate Baby Boomer wine!

Sauvignon Blanc is New Zealand’s most widely planted grape variety.  The Marlborough region was first planted 142 years ago, yet it is only  a mere 30 years since Cloudy Bay put New Zealand on the global wine map in 1986.   By the early 1990’s Sauvignon Blanc was firmly established as New Zealand’s flagship wine with international demand increasing every year.  Today it accounts for 66% of New Zealand’s total wine production.

Oz Clarke once summed up New Zealand  Sauvignon Blanc  as “the wine,  wine snobs can’t bear”.. Why?  Because this is the wine that a generation of  fans seek out for its ripe distinct flavours and aromas.  The best Sauvignon Blanc does not have to be expensive or complex because the wine entertains with  its attitude!   The appeal of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is its simplicity!


2014 Castel de Serra Gavi DOCG  €7.99 

Stockists:  Lidl, Nationwide

We’re off to Northern Italy to the region of Piedmonte for our next wine.  This part of Italy is best know for big block-buster red wine styles, such as the regal DOCG Barolo and its slightly softer younger brother, DOCG Barbaresco.   Here too you will find one of Italy’s best know sparkling wine styles, Asti Spumante.

Head to the southern border  of  the Piedmonte region and you will find  the region’s best still white wine, made in an area known as  DOCG Gavi from the Cortese grape.

I am an enormous fan of this wine style.  The is a great value version of this  Italian white wine style, easy to drink and perfect for summer barbeques.    Gavi has lots of lovely ripe stone fruit aromas and flavours.  Its easy to drink because of the peach & pear flavours are  backed by a bit of lifting acidity.  For someone who wants to try a different less well known grape variety,  this  one is worth a look.

Lidl have an Italian Wine event  starting on Tuesday 13th June,  2017. It is running alongside their Italiamo Food event and  both will continue in Lidl shops nationwide,  while stocks last.

There  are 19 Italian wines in the promotion; for the whites  I would recommend the Corte Allodola Soave Classico DOC 2015 from the Veneto, or the  Musita Grillo DOC Sicilia 2016 from Sicily.  

If you are an adventurous millenial and  would like to explore unusual grape varieties such as Percorino,  Aglianico, Brindisi, Nero di Troia or Refosco dal Pedununcolo Rosso, then take yourself along to Lidl in a fornight’s time and check out the wine range in their new Italian promotion.

The Gavi featured today  is part of the Lidl core wine range and is always  available.


Lots of interesting consumer events coming up in June.  Look out for the new Campo Viejo Tapas Trail which is launching mid month.   Taste of Dublin returns to the Iveagh Gardens on June 15th for four days.   There is a Gin Tasting in Limerick and a Craft Beer Tasting in Cork,  details are listed on my website.