Given that this is turning into something of a anthology, I'll try and keep this a little bit briefer this time and worry about the wine and leave the chat alone! (although there I go!) Palandri Solora Shiraz 2003 is a good honest Aussie Shiraz, at a very decent price (£5.75) and for my money beats most of the competition in that price range that you'll find in the supermarkets. One range up Palandri Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2002 was perhaps not in the class of a Hollick from Coonawarra or a Cape Mentelle but again at £7.35 it was really very decent. All too often at the £4-£10 mark wines on offer fail to live up to much having not had enough care taken over them in the vineyard and winery, but this seemed to me to be made with decent fruit with great care in the winery - though at this price it is understandable that they have not taken the grapes as far as they would go. Trentham Estate Petit Verdot 2003 was an object lesson for me in why the French add a bit to some of their Bordeaux blends, for my taste it was far too full on, but a little dash here and there in another wine would certainly add that little "Je ne sais quoi". Two Portuguese offerings Dao Quinta dos Roques 2003 and Montinho Sao Miguel 2004 skipped delightfully across the palate and reinforced my view that I really need to be drinking more Portuguese wines to discover what is really out there.
By this stage my palate was really suffering, so you'll have to forgive me that my notes became less expressive as I gave I up trying to discern little touches of this or that in a wine with a mouth capable of telling me whether something was nice or not and not a great deal more! However the remaining stand out wines Woodstock Cabernet Sauvignon 2000, Woodstock "Stocks" Shiraz 2001, and Hess Mount Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon 2002 (California) were lovely wines that I could drink any day of the week, if funds allowed. The Woodstock Cabernet at £10.99 I thought represented excellent value for money.