Articles and Reviews

Carta Roja Gran Reserva

Posted by: Dane Brookes

Date: 08-10-2019

A go-to wine for me, with a lip-smacking price tag of £5.50 a bottle, you really can’t go wrong with this. Not sure that Andy agrees…

This is what Sainsbury’s website says:

Carta Roja is made traditionally from Monastrell grapes which produce rich and intense wines. This Grand Reservada is full-bodied with red fruit aromas and intense flavours of ripe plum and vanilla. Aged in vat, American oak barrels and matured in bottle, this wine has soft, smooth tannins.

Here are the vital stats:

  • Alcohol by volume: 13.5%
  • Country: Spain
  • Region of origin: Jumilla
  • Grape variety: Monastrell
  • Producer: BSI – Bodegas San Isidro
  • Winemaker: Inmaculada Perez
  • Wine colour: Red
  • Type of closure: Natural Cork


  • Silver Wine Winner – International Challenge 2016
  • International Wine & Spirit Competition Quality Award – IWSC – Silver 2016

The Babbling Brookes’ verdict

This is one of my favourite wines from Sainsbury’s. At just £5.50, it’s surprisingly good quality. I have been enjoying this wine for a few years now – at least a bottle each month; I’ll rarely visit Sainsbury’s without picking up a couple of bottles. In fact, if it happens to be the 25% off 6 or more bottles offer Sainsbury’s often runs, I’ll always take advantage!

I bought my fellow wine Cretin and co-contributor, Andy, a bottle of this a while ago. I know he drank it, but he hasn’t yet commented on it, so I think it’s probably a thumbs down from him. It’s probably half the price of the cheapest wine Andy will usually buy, so maybe there is something lacking in the quality that I’m not picking up on. After all, Andy is a qualified wine expert and knows much more than me – whereas I just know what I like!

I agree with most of the description on the Sainsbury’s website, but I’m not getting the ripe plum flavour. But oak, vanilla, smooth tannins all the way! The only thing missing from that incredible list of flavours for me is leather.

This is a bottle that goes down well with friends – I often share this with family and visitors to the house and it never disappoints. The average rating on the Sainsbury’s website (though only 18 reviews) is 4.1 out of 5. I’d wholehearted agree with that rating. But try it yourself and let us know what you think…