Every Majestic store has an in-store tasting counter with a variety of wines open to try on a daily basis. We urge our customers to take advantage of the tasting counter in order to ‘try before you buy’ but more importantly to try styles or grape varieties that you would not normally consider.
In addition to this twice a year various stores host customer invite tasting evenings whereby Majestic staff welcome customers to the store on a specified evening to try a selection of specially chosen wines accompanied by nibbles and cheeses…
Regular Majestic customers will be familiar with these social events and this winter 160 stores will be hosting tastings over the next couple of weeks to launch the start of our Christmas promotional campaign showcasing the best deals from our winter edition of Grape to Glass. For those of you that have not been to a Majestic tasting evening I’d urge you to sign up now. Contact your local store for further details.
Southampton Manager, Jamie Baxter, chose a great selection of wines including Veuve Clicquot NV Champagne – which is on a fantastic offer of £27 until 29th November – and Green Point Brut for customers to enjoy on arrival.
Veuve Clicquot NV
Special Offer = £27.00**
Green Point Brut NV
Buy 2 bottles save 25% = £12.48*
Each customer was given a tasting sheet listing the wines to be tasted throughout the evening and a pen for their own tasting notes and comments. We had 3 “stations” set up around the store, each with a few different wines, and customers could mingle around the store to enjoy them at their own pace. First up we had the whites station where Rebecca from our Salisbury store (also giving a helping hand) had 4 different white wines as detailed below.
Domaine de Villargeau 2009 Côteaux du Giennois
£9.99 Buy 2 bottles save £4 = £7.99*
The Parcel Series Sauvignon Semillon 2009 Margaret River
Buy any 2 Australian still wines £5-20 save 20% = £5.99*
Novas Chardonnay Viognier Marsanne 2008 Casablanca Valley
£9.99 Buy any 2 Chilean still wines save 20% = £7.99*
Meursault 2008 Jean Bourguignon
£17.99 Buy 2 bottles save £6 = £14.99*
As you can see there was a fair mix of Old World and New World as well a variety of styles ranging from the light zesty style of the Giennois to the aromatic creamy richness of the Novas. Overall the Giennois was the preferred white and “refreshing” seemed to be the word of choice to describe it.
Next up the reds station. It was here that the general opinion was most divided. Wine tastings are the perfect opportunity to highlight the fact that wine is unique to an individual and everyone has different tastes and preferences… The red wines on offer were:
Domaine de l’Aigle Pinot Noir Gerard Bertrand, PGI Pays d’Oc
£9.99 Buy 2 bottles save £4 = £7.99*
The Parcel Series Shiraz 2008 Margaret River
£7.49 Buy any 2 Australian still wines £5-20 save 20% = £5.99*
Carmen Gran Reserva Carmenère 2008 Apalta
£12.49 Buy any 2 Chilean still wines save 20% = £9.99*
It intrigued me that several people immediately dismissed the Pinot Noir and wanted to jump straight onto the bigger bodied red wines. In true Majestic style we talked about the wine and most of the reluctant few went on to try the Domaine de l’Aigle Pinot Noir – afterall its a free wine tasting – and not surprisingly, a few changed opinions were formed. This is a great wine with more guts than you might imagine from a Pinot Noir – light red fruit flavours and cinnamon and clove-like spice is supported by firm tannins. Despite the change in mindset towards this wine the overall winner would have to be The Parcel Series Shiraz from Margaret River, Western Australia. Superb value for money and bottled exclusively for Majestic. Full of rich berry black fruits and peppery spice this wine is a prime example of why Australian Shiraz is so popular.
Fine Wine, Port & Cheese
Nothing goes better at a wine tasting than cheese, and I think the customers would have to agree! A charcuterie and Artisan cheese platter ordered from Vallebona got almost as much interest as the wine! On the station I was manning, to accompany the devine cheese, I was offering 2007 Pomerol, Château De Sales and Taylor’s 10 year old Tawny Port.
We had a lot of New World big-red wine lovers at the Southampton tasting and it was good to see them getting involved in some classic Right-Bank Bordeaux. Pomerol has many small estates producing supple, approachable wines primarily from Merlot and Château De Sales is an esteemed fine wine popular in the Majestic range. This certainly opened up throughout the evening and worked fantastically well with a bit of meat and cheese! We are able to offer the 2007 vintage at the competitive price of £14.99 (when you buy 2 bottles) primarily due to the château pricing wines too high on their release, thus plenty of stock still available now… See more value 2007 vintage Bordeaux’s in our blog.
Château De Sales 2007 Pomerol
£19.99 Buy 2 bottles save £10 = £14.99*
Taylor’s 10 year old Tawny Port NV
£19.99 Special Offer = £17.99*
These evenings are great for both staff and customers alike as it gives us the opportunity to catch up with our customers, have group discussions about wine and also for me to get back into store!
If you are not already signed up to attend one of our Winter Tastings contact your local store for details.