Food & Drink

Where to Buy Cheap Organic Wine

aldi organic wine

Want to know where to buy cheap organic wine?  Let me share my secrets.

I am not particularly fussy about wine.  If I’m buying wine for myself, either in a shop or bar/restaurant, I will generally always pick either a Chilean red – maybe a Malbec or Merlot – or a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.  However if a friend shows up at my door brandishing a bottle of wine, then I will happily sit and quaff whatever it is.  Red, white or rose, and whatever type whilst we chew the fat.

We popped into Aldi over the weekend to pick up some alcohol for Christmas.  In the absence of an independent bottle shop in our area, we go to Aldi.  They sell lots of beers from smaller independent brewers, such as the relatively local to us Williams Bros, who make some pretty nice beer.  I’ve also found Aldi’s wine is pretty good too.  And I’m not going to lie, the price is pretty good too.

Where to Buy Cheap Organic Wine

Whilst picking up some beers and perusing the wine in Aldi I spotted some intriguing-looking beer bottles.  Or rather, I thought they were beer bottles.  On second look I realised they were actually wines.  And not just wines, but organic wines.  Organic wines at a rather bargainous £2.99 a bottle.  I picked up a bottle of red and a bottle of white, just to see how nice such cheap organic wine could be.

Now the bottles come packaged in beer bottles, crown caps, and all.  And as you can imagine are smaller than a standard wine bottle.  You get 500 ml compared to the standard 750 ml wine bottle size.  However, it does mean that a litre of wine comes in at £5.98, which is pretty good value. Particularly for organic wine.  They are by South African winery – Origin Wines.

But Are They Any Good?

We’ve tried both of Aldi’s cheap organic wines, in the interests of quality control of course.  The red – a South African red – is by far my favourite.  It’s very fruity, very smooth, and not too acidic.  What’s more, it doesn’t leave a bad taste in your mouth, as some cheap reds do.  We drank it on its own of an evening after the kids went to bed, and it went down very very well.  I think it would work well paired with food too though.  We are already planning a return trip to Aldi to buy a few more bottles for over the festive season!

The white isn’t entirely my cup of tea.  It’s perfectly drinkable but felt a little dry for my liking.  Maybe it’s more of a Chardonnay in style.  We managed to drink it all though, so it wasn’t that bad!  You might really like it, so don’t discount it on my advice.

Aldi’s organic wine is cringingly marketed as a “craft wine” in an attempt to tap into the success of the craft beer movement and to entice millennials into buying more wine.  Now, I’m too old to be a millennial and don’t need fancy packaging to get me to buy wine.  I’m also not too sure what craft wine actually means, especially considering Origin Wine says they are one of the top 3 South African wine exporters.  However, if you can get past the gimmicky packaging and the “craft wine” label it’s actually pretty nice organic wine for £2.99, particularly the red.  I’ll raise a glass to it!

Have you tried Aldi’s organic wine?  What did you think of it?  And do check out my ethical wine guide, and my tips on what to do with leftover wine, in case you haven’t been able to finish your wine.

Food & Drink, Kitchen Staples

The Best Organic Food To Eat, And The Ones You Can Avoid

organic food to eat
organic food to eat

Want to know the best organic food to eat, and the food you don’t need to eat if money is tight? Read on!

Organic food has been scientifically cited as being better for you but can be more expensive to buy. Therefore, I’ve been doing a little research into what organic food to eat and which organic food you don’t necessarily need to buy if money is tight.  That research led me to the Pesticide Action Network UK (PAN UK), who published the best and worst food in the UK for pesticide residues.

In my list of organic food to eat, I’ve listed the foods that PAN UK found to have the highest levels of pesticide residues.  These are the ones that are worth spending a little bit more money on for the organic versions.  For example, 90% of pears that PAN UK sampled were found to have pesticide residues, and that figure is 89% for apples and 88% for grapes.

In the list of organic foods you don’t need to buy, I’ve listed the foods that they found to have the lowest levels of pesticide residues.  Here, if your budget is tight then you can save your money and buy the regular non-organic versions.

If you’re a Moral Fibres US reader then do check out the Environmental Working Group Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides for information for your area.

The Organic Food to Eat

These fruit and vegetables tend to have high levels of pesticide use associated with their growth, so these are the foods you should eat organic:

Beans in a Pod
Citrus Fruits
Courgettes & Marrows
Peas in a Pod
Sweet Potatoes

The Ones You Can Give A Miss

These fruit and vegetables tend to have lower levels of pesticide use associated with their growth. Therefore you can buy the non-organic versions if your shopping budget doesn’t stretch as far as the organic versions:

Corn on the Cob
Kiwi Fruit
Star Fruit

I’d always try and buy local (or at least British grown) and seasonal produce though, where possible.

One thought on the list: I’m not sure about fruits with skin on them.  For example, PAN UK found that 100% of soft citrus fruit that they tested had pesticide residue.  I’ve always been of the opinion that as you’re peeling them, and have no intention of zesting them, then you don’t need to buy organic citrus fruit.  Unless you’re making organic marmalade of course. What do you think?