This wine is one of the first pair I received from Aldi as a panel member of their Wine Club. I was first made aware of this wine around 2012 as a recommendation from a colleague. Back then, I wasn’t really much of a red wine drinker, and was seeking a decent affordable one to try out to see if my tastes had changed. Shortly after trying it, I discovered that the 2011 vintage had been awarded a silver medal by judges at the International Wine and Spirits Awards, beating rivals that cost many times more. Surprisingly, this wine cost a bargain £3.59 back then, and several years later, it costs £3.49! (Price on the Aldi website).
I remember at the time of the International Wine and Spirits Award that the wine went flying off the shelf, but these days, my local stores always seem to have a good supply. I have no idea how they manage to produce such a good wine for under £4 considering UK taxes taking up a good portion of the price, but whatever they’re doing, keep up the good work!
The 2015 Toro Loco (Meaning Crazy Bull in Spanish) comes from the Utiel-Requena region of Spain near Valencia. I think it used to be made from just Tempranillo, the grape best known from its use in Rioja, but this one also includes some Bobal, a local grape which isn’t so widely known. The only other time I’ve sampled it was in an other Aldi Toro Loco wine, their rosé, which is also better than its budget price would suggest.
The wine in the glass is a deep red/purple, and has a fruity aroma of ripe cherries, with a touch of leather. Before being selected for the Aldi Wine Club, I had tried lots of different varietals and known what I liked, but had never really taken much time to think about the individual aromas and flavours. Unfortunately I was suffering from a cold at the time of drinking, so my senses weren’t at their best, but I surprised myself at being able to detect such a non-fruit aroma, even with a partially blocked nose.
The fruitiness continues in the mouth, with strong flavours of cherry and plum, and the savoury note of the leather continuing, with a decent length. The label describes the wine as full bodied, but I’d probably say it is more medium, with a moderate level of tannin, and 12.5% alcohol.
Also keep a look out for their similar Toro Loco Reserva (which has a similarly styled label, but in black and gold) which sometimes appears on their shelves, which has extra oak aging, but still for a very reasonable £4.99.