Fancy a drink? Sam Wylie-Harris raises her glass to the week's best buys
IF YOU'RE dreaming of sunnier climes, a Mediterranean cruise and a lively glass in fantasy ports of call could be just the ticket for armchair travellers.
Grape escapes with some beauties from France, Spain, Italy and Greece are an open invitation to savour the magic of the Med.
Fragrant Provence is a treasure trove of fine wine – but the prices can rack up. Thankfully, your travel wallet can stay fairly intact with this crisp discovery that captures the joys of the South of France.
Try L'Air de Provence 2008, Alpes de Haute Provence VdP (£6.99, www.laithwaites.co.uk), a dry muscat with refreshing citrus flavours and notes of lavender.
Further along the coast, the beautiful Languedoc region produces consistently good quality wine. Try Arrogant Frog Tutti Frutti Rouge 2008 (£5.75, from £6.39, www.dorjes.co.uk) which is one of those delicious reds that's best enjoyed slightly chilled.
Corsica's beautiful beaches and mountain scenery make this French island hideaway a great attraction to holidaymakers, and wine lovers.
If you like the buttery, lemony characteristics of chardonnay, try Terra Vecchia Corsica Reserve 2007 (£5.99, selected Somerfield) a well-balanced glass of tropical fruit with luscious notes of ripe peach.
If the thought of the warm Sicilian sunshine has you lusting after a big, front-loaded red, try Massivo Nero d'Avola 2007, Sicilia IGT
(£7.49, www.laithwaites.co.uk). Seductively smooth with gently-spiced dark berry fruits.