THE EXPERT Sally Easton Master of Wine and wine buyer for Berry Brothers and Rudd This has some attractive ruby and crimson tones suggestive of a fruity wine. The nose is muted and uninspiring with hints of slightly unclean old wood. The palate is hot and spicy and lacks any recognisable fruit character or intensity, making the wine unbalanced. With the age and Reserva categorisation, I expect some mature, ripe fruit and spicy oak tones, but these are lacking. The packaging is traditionally smart and with a £4.99 price tag probably quite a few people will try it. Utiel-Requena is gaining some acceptance at least at trade level but this bottle disappointed. Success rating out of 25 ­ 5 THE DESIGNER Graham Shearsby Board creative director, graphics at Design Bridge At first glance this looks like a run of the mill Rioja, with the hallmark wire net. Further inspection reveals it is from Utiel-Requena, a hitherto unknown area to me. Apart from the initial quality expectation hinted at by the gold wire, the rest of the package lacks any appeal or charm. This is a kit of parts, complete with token sketch of the bodega and a heavy dose of gold foiling. Shame really, as a reasonably priced Reserva from a potentially interesting region should have more to say than the usual generic cues. In a marketplace so crowded, a new name on the block has to be more inspiring. Success rating out of 25 ­ 10 The buyer Steve Mayes Category controller at Landmark An undistinguished wine. It doesn't really stimulate anything positive or negative. The appearance is a lovely ruby red but the nose doesn't back up the anticipation of cherry fruits and oak. On the palate the taste is bland with a little fruit on the finish but fairly hard tannins. This is certainly not what you'd expect from a '94 Reserva because it is too lightweight. It's not awful but there are far better wines around at £4.99. The packaging is fairly innocuous, too, and this is all too indicative of Spanish wines in general. They desperately need a renaissance. Success rating out of 25 ­ 12 Total score out of 100 - 38 {{DRINKS }}