In January’s edition of Chef Tony’s Wine Club, our resident chef, gastronome and purveyor of fine wines casts his expert eye over two delectable red wine selections. Perfect for winding down during these gloomy January evenings.

As the months progress, Chef Tony will continue to bring you his pick of wines from supermarkets, independent retailers and wine clubs.

Sangiovese, Wright Wine Co,Chef Tony says: As it’s winter, we should really talk reds.

Terre Allegre Sangiovese IGT, Wright Wine Co, Skipton (£6)Baracca Fassoldi, M&S

This is an easy drinking fruity red with soft tannins and flavours of cherry and plums. Pair it with cured meat, pizzas, pasta, Italian sausages or grilled meats. And it’s great with Mediterranean style lamb dishes. More commonly used as the main grape in blends of Chianti from Tuscany, Sangiovese as a single varietal is increasingly becoming more popular and featured on more and more Italian menus. 

Baracca and Fassoldi Chianti Riserva, Marks & Spencer (£12)

A classic Chianti from central Tuscany with a blend of Sangiovese, Canaiolo and Cabernet Sauvignon with hints of black cherry and chocolate. Serve with Italian meats and meaty pasta. I chose to pair mine with a spicy fennel-based Italian sausage pasta but rosemary, garlic and thyme-roasted pork would be a perfect match. 

Chef Tony’s verdict: The Sangiovese is hard to beat at that price – but do look out for the Chianti as it’s sometimes on special offer at M&S, down to £6.

By Chef Tony

Main image by Chris Payne


PROPER FOOD FOR PROPER APPETITES Discover recipes to nourish the soul, all compiled and concocted by Chef Tony, a gastronome with 15 years’ of experience cooking across the North West. Chef Tony has worked in some of the region’s best kitchens, including the award-winning Nutters in Rochdale and The Lowry at Salford Quays.