Thursday, May 30, 2013

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  • Thursday, May 30, 2013

Beaujolais BBQ at Acadia Restaurant



Trio of Beaujolais Wines I attended an exclusive tasting of Beaujolais wines paired with items off the BBQ. This event was done in advance of a special promotion that will be out soon at the LCBO, just in time for the upcoming - or finally arrived? - BBQ season. The luncheon was hosted at Acadia Restaurant in Little Italy, with the food items prepared by chef Patrick Kriss. Leading the tasting was head of marketing of Inter Beaujolais - Anthony Collet. The twitter tag for this event was #BeaujolaisBBQ.

We started off the event with a Chardonnay from the region's most widespread appellation - Beaujolais AOC (yes, there is a Beaujolais appellation within the Beaujolais region). Chardonnay makes up less than 1% of all production within Beaujolais (the region), so it was a nice treat to sample something we probably wouldn't get a chance to taste, and a nice starter before getting into 11 straight Gamay Noirs.

CHÂTEAU DES JACQUES BEAUJOLAIS GRAND CLOS DE LOYSE 2010 (#11094399) (XD) - $19.75
Served as an apertif. This Chardonnay has medium-intensity aromas of orchard fruit, citrus and smoke. Lime and citrus on the palate with refreshing acidity. Finish was medium-long. It's available at the SAQ in Québec. Score: 87 pts

Next up were a couple of light, easy-drinking reds to be paired with Creole Shrimp and handpicked Anson Mills Grits. Porridge immediately came to mind when diving into this dish.

Creole Shrimp and handpicked Anson Mills Grits

GEORGES DUBOEUF BEAUJOLAIS FUN 2009 - (#228155) (XD) - $10.95
This red wine is fruit forward with low- to medium-intensity cran-cherry and strawberry aromas. Bitter cranberry, sour cherry and fruity flavour profile. Good acidity, slightly hot finish. Easy drinking, good BBQ wine. Would probably have been more "fun" last year. Still managed to pair well with the shrimp dish, as grits provided good texture balance. Score: 86 pts

LOUIS JADOT BEAUJOLAIS-VILLAGES COMBE AUX JACQUES 2011 - (#365924) (D) - $17.95
Medium-intensity strawberry and cranberry aromas. Spice, cranberry and slightly chalky tannins on the palate. Good acidity for pairing with food. Clean and smooth medium-length finish. A bit too big and sweet for the Creole Shrimp. Score: 87 pts

The 2nd course on this lovely afternoon was Piri Piri Chicken Leg with Yogurt that was topped with a Pickled Anaheim Chilly. The piri piri sauce was a lot milder than I am accustomed too, and worked well with a couple of the wines for this pairing.

Beaujolais and Sweet Corn Bread

Joseph Burrier Saint-Amour Côte de BessetPiri Piri Chicken Leg with Yogurt and Pickled Anaheim Chilly

BOUCHARD AÎNÉ & FILS BEAUJOLAIS SUPÉRIEUR 2011 - (#009431) (XD) - $11.95
Not very aromatic, but shows some sour cherry, strawberry and oak aromas. Spice, cranberry and black fruits on the palate. Good acidity and a lingering finish. Spice from wine paired really well with the mildly-spiced Piri Piri Chicken. My favourite pairing! Score: 86 pts

JACQUES DÉPAGNEUX CÔTE DU PY MORGON 2011 - (#299925) (XD) - $18.95
Low intensity aromas of cherry, strawberry and mild spice. Light- to medium-bodied with pleasant aroma replays. Balanced overall with integrated tannins and a medium-long finish. Could be cellared 1-2 years, but enjoyable now. Tannins and spice were a bit much for the Piri-Piri Chicken. Score: 87+ pts

JOSEPH BURRIER SAINT-AMOUR CÔTE DE BESSET 2009 - (#11154419) (XD) - $25.85
Fresh, ripe cherry, raspberry, strawberry and plum aromas. Spicy red and black fruits on the palate, with some oak showing through as well. Good acidity and quite complex. Good pairing flavour-wise with the Piri-Piri Chicken, but alcohol (14%) shows through on the medium-length finish. Score: 88 pts

Up next was a Grilled Eggplant that was placed on top of a Peanut, Coconut & Curry Condiment that reminded me a lot of a South Asian happy hour snack called chevdo. As we move further along in this tasting, the wines are getting bigger, with more tannins that require more substance in your meal to balance out the tannin. I must say, I was caught off-guard a bit as I had not tasted anything from Beaujolais in many years.

Grilled Eggplant with Peanut, Coconut & Curry Condiment

CHÂTEAU DE PIERREUX BROUILLY 2011 - (#005496) (XD) - $18.95
Medium intensity violet and floral aromas. Black fruits, currant and violet flavours, with spice kicking in mid-palate, and finally giving way to dark fruits on the medium-length finish. Good tannins, could reward ageing 1-2 years. Score: 87 pts

VILLA PONCIAGO FLEURIE LA RÉSERVE 2011 - (#299917) (XD) - $21.95
Highly expressive aromas of ripe red fruits, cherry and blueberry. Medium-bodied with chalky tannins, flavour profile consists of blueberries and red currants. Well-balanced with good acidity and a medium-long finish. Delicious. Score: 88+ pts

GEORGES DUBOEUF BEAUJOLAIS-VILLAGES 2010 - (#122077) (XD) - $12.95
Aromas are very fruit forward and of medium-high intensity - bing cherry and strawberry come to mind. More red fruits on the soft palate. Medium-level tannins and balanced overall with hints of spice on the finish. Score: 86 pts

The previous flight of wines raised my expectations for this final flight. All 3 wines in this flight were big Gamays, with good acidity, lots of tannin, and could have been opened now or enjoyed in a couple of years. Perhaps it's no surprise given that these 3 wines hail from three neighbouring Cru Beaujolais appellations - Moulin-à-Vent, Chénas, and Juliénas - all of which reside in the northern part of Beaujolias, where the soil is mostly granite. These wines were paired with Korean Short Rib and encrusted with Crispy Rice, Sesame & Chili. Red meat and big wines are a natural pairing.

Korean Short Rib Encrusted with Crispy Rice, Sesame & Chili

DOMAINE MANOIR DU CARRA JULIÉNAS 2010 - (#290981) (D) - $19.95
Medium-intensity aromas of oak, blackberry and currant in this red wine. Medium-full bodied with flavours of black fruits, cedar, currant and cinnamon. Mouth-watering acidity and a medium-long finish. Chalky tannins will allow cellaring for 2+ years. This is a big Gamay. Score: 88 pts

DOMAINE DU VISSOUX MOULIN À VENT LES TROIS ROCHES 2010 - (#11154427) (XD) - $24.75
Medium-intensity fruit forward aromas of sour cherry along with some steely notes. Medium-chalky tannins and woody, red fruit flavour palate. Balanced with a medium-length finish. Age-worthy wine - could be cellared 2 years. Score: 88+ pts

DOMAINE PIRON-LAMELOISE CHÉNAS QUARTZ 2009 - (#240481) (XD) - $22.50
Nose seemed rather closed but shows black fruits and violet aromas. Medium-bodied with flavours of red fruits, cranberry and sour cherry. Finish is short-medium in length. Structured, big tannins will reward ageing 1-2 years. Score: 88 pts

And last, but not least, we had a scrumptious dessert. No wine pairing was offered for the Dark Chocolate Ganache with Chantilly Cream & Caramel Popcorn dessert. Might I suggest, if it exists, a Late Harvest Gamay?

Dark Chocolate Ganache with Chantilly Cream & Caramel Popcorn

Anthony Collet, Inter Beaujolais

Our table at #BeaujolaisBBQ


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

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  • Tuesday, May 21, 2013

May 25 Wine Picks: Pinot Noir + German Riesling

The next LCBO Vintages wine release will be on . The major focus on this release is on Pinot Noirs that show a sense of place. Most of this feature is quite disappointing. However, if you're heart is set on the heart-break grape, check out the version from Lailey that's from our own backyard.

The secondary feature is on German Rieslings. This noble white grape is very versatile and can range in style from bone-dry to very sweet (i.e. Eiswein). In all, there are only 5 wines from this feature and, unfortunately, no Eisweins (again!). In general, German Rieslings offer excellent value considering the superior quality that's in the bottle. I am sure I will be adding a couple of these Rieslings to my collection.

Daniel Vollenweider has 2 wines in this Vintages release. His Wolfer Riesling has a classic Mosel profile and is just slightly off-dry. Going up a notch in the sweetness level, and yet another classically styled Mosel Kab, is the Studert-Prüm Riesling Kabinett.

Last, and definitely not the least, is the 2005 Riesling Auslese from Dr. Hermann. Auslese wines take the sweetness levels further up the scale. The Dr. Herman hails from Ürziger Würzgarten (in Mosel), where the terroir consists of red sandstone and slate soil, helping create wines with a unique character. At 8-years-old, the Dr. Hermann is ageing gracefully and drinking beautifully now. A trademark of German Rieslings is their high acidity combined with low-alcohol levels. Both the Studert-Prüm and the Dr. Hermann follow this path, with just 8% alcohol/volume.

From the rest of the release, in white wine, the Malivoire Musqué Spritz is made from the clone 809 Chardonnay Musqué. From the red wines in this release, the Château le Grande de Bessan is a blend of about 70% Cab Sauv and 30% Merlot. The Château Rozier is also a blend, consisting of mostly Merlot, some Cab Franc, and trace amounts of Cab Sauv. And finally, the Rivera Il Falcone is a blend consisting of 70% Nero di Troia and 30% Montepulciano.

Enjoy my Vintages recommendations for this week. New wines will be on shelves this Saturday. Let me know if you buy and taste anything from my wine picks below. Enjoy!


Red Wine:
  • IN SITU WINEMAKER’S SELECTION CARMENÈRE 2010 - Aconcagua Valley, Chile (#037952) (XD) - $13.95
  • TERRAZAS DE LOS ANDES RESERVA MALBEC 2010 - Mendoza, Argentina (#029280) (XD) - $17.95
  • EVANS & TATE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2008 - Margaret River, Western Australia (#327411) (XD) - $18.95
  • BASTIDE MIRAFLORS VIEILLES VIGNES SYRAH/GRENACHE 2011 - IGP Côtes Catalanes, Midi, France (#320499) (D) - $18.95
  • CHÂTEAU LA GRANGE DE BESSAN 2009 - AC Médoc, Bordeaux, France (#321331) (XD) - $19.95
  • RIVERA IL FALCONE RISERVA 2007 - DOC Castel del Monte, Puglia, Italy (#177295) (XD) - $22.95
  • LAILEY VINEYARD PINOT NOIR 2011 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#591404) (XD) - $24.95
  • CHÂTEAU ROZIER 2010 - AC Saint-Émilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux, France (#024539) (XD) - $28.95

White Wine:
  • HENRI POIRON FIEF GIRAUD MUSCADET SÈVRE & MAINE SUR LIE 2011 - AC, Loire, France (#327726) (XD) - $14.95
  • VOLLENWEIDER WOLFER RIESLING 2011 - Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#324335) (D) - $19.95
  • STUDERT-PRÜM GRAACHER HIMMELREICH RIESLING KABINETT 2011 - Gutsabfüllung, Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#160853) (M) - $19.95
  • DOMAINES SCHLUMBERGER LES PRINCES ABBÉS PINOT GRIS 2010 - AC Alsace, France (#021253) (XD) - $19.95
  • MALIVOIRE MUSQUÉ SPRITZ 2012 - VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#189670) (MS) - $19.95
  • DR. HERMANN ÜRZIGER WÜRZGARTEN RIESLING AUSLESE 2005 - Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#324285) (MS) - $21.95
  • SIGALAS SANTORINI ASSYRTIKO 2011 - AP, Greece (#074781) (XD) - $21.95
  • SAINT CLAIR PIONEER BLOCK 10 CHARDONNAY 2010 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#317651) (XD) - $25.95
  • DOMAINE ZIND-HUMBRECHT CALCAIRE GEWÜRZTRAMINER 2009 - AC Alsace, France (#320481) (S) - $29.95
  • SAINTSBURY CHARDONNAY 2010 - Unfiltered, Carneros, Napa Valley, California, USA (#359281) (XD) - $29.95

Rosé Wine:
  • DOMAINE DES CARTERESSES TAVEL ROSÉ 2012 - AC, Rhône, France (#739474) (XD) - $16.95


The rest of the wines from this release can be found here.


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

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  • Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Lomond Syrah 2008 (South Africa) - Wine Review

This red wine is from last November's Vintages release. I hope you picked up a bottle or two of this when I recommended it last November, as, understandably, there are only 2 bottles available in all of Ontario.

Lomond practices sustainable farming throughout all of their vineyards, and the grapes for this wine hail from the southernmost point of Africa.

LOMOND SYRAH 2008 - WO Cape Agulhas, South Africa (#146464) (XD) - $18.95

2008 Lomond Syrah label photo
Tasting Note:
Violet and black fruit aromas from the cork. Crushed black fruits, red currant, prune, all surrounded by forest floor/earthy aromas. Medium-full bodied and complex with more dark fruits, prune, and pepper that give way to vanilla and hints of black licorice and milk chocolate on palate. Very good acidity. Light spice on smooth, long finish. Dusty tannins will still evolve for another 2 years, but drinking great right now. Highly recommended and a steal, if you can get your hands on it. Enjoyed with Chicken Korma.


Saturday, May 11, 2013

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  • Saturday, May 11, 2013

Wine Reviews: 2013 Niagara Icewine Festival

After much delay, my wine reviews from the 2013 Niagara Wine Festival are finally posted. There were lots of delicious red wines, white wines, and, of course, Icewines tasted over the 2 days. Also check out my full review of the Festival. I hope you can join us next year!

Wine reviews from the Peller Estates dinner can be found here.

Tasting Notes:
NCT DEAN'S LIST CABERNET FRANC ICEWINE 2010 - Donald Ziraldo Vineyard, St. Davids Bench, Niagara Peninsula (#) (S) (200 mL) - $29.95
Ripe, plummy fruit, honey and caramel aromas. Medium-bodied with jammy core of red fruits, strawberry and a tinge of caramel on palate. Well-balanced and long finish. Cheesecake softened the bright acidity very nicely. Score: 90 pts

NCT DEAN'S LIST PINOT NOIR 2009 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake (#) (XD) - $27.95
Quite aromatic with smoky beetroot aromas. Light-bodied with more beetroot, raspberry and mushroom on palate. Light, integrated tannins with cedar and smoke notes on the finish. Has very good acidity. Score: 89 pts

NCT DEAN'S LIST CABERNET FRANC DESSICATO (NV?) - (#) (XD) $47.95
Dried fruit, herbal, tea leaf and green aromas. Medium-bodied and quite smooth with dark fruit flavours on the palate. Also plummy and jammy. Mouth-watering acidity and a finish that is a bit short. Score: 88 pts

NCT DEAN'S LIST PRODIGY 2010 - (#) (S) (200 mL) - $37.95
Blend of white grapes that offer honey and apricot aromas, with some lemon in the background. Aroma replays on palate with touch of beeswax on the medium-length finish. Full-bodied, rich and creamy, and almost syrupy mouthfeel. Good acidity. Score: 89 pts

CHÂTEAU DES CHARMES SAUVIGNON BLANC 2011 - VQA St. David's Bench, Niagara Peninsula (#391300) (XD) - $14.95
Grass, herbal, floral, and white peach aromas. On the palate, there are balanced flavours of cat pee, citrus, lime. Crisp acidity and very dry. Score: 87 pts

CHÂTEAU DES CHARMES 'OLD VINES' CABERNET/MERLOT 2007 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake (#222372) (XD) - $19.95
Sweet cedar, vanilla and dark fruit aromas. Has luscious flavours of coconut, cedar and currants. Very nice, integrated tannins in this full-bodied red wine. Score: 88 pts

JACKSON-TRIGGS DELAINE VINEYARD SYRAH 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#086553) (XD) - $32.95
Low intensity aromas of ripe dark fruits, oak, and some spice. Medium-bodied with currant and minty notes on palate. Mouth-watering acidity and quite smooth, integrated tannins throughout. Score: 88 pts

JACKSON-TRIGGS PROPRIETORS' GRAND RESERVE RIESLING ICEWINE 2008 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (S) (375 mL) - $59.95
Very nice, clear honey and peach aromas. Medium-bodied and sweet with nice aromas replays. Has good acidity, but a syrupy, highly-viscous mouthfeel. Nice, long finish. Score: 89 pts

JACKSON-TRIGGS PROPRIETORS' RESERVE VIDAL ICEWINE 1996 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#594010) (S) (375 mL) - $49.95
Burnt sugar and molasses aromas. Rich mouthfeel and creamy with nice aroma replays and touch of orange citrus on palate. A Vintages Essentials product, but you will likely only find the current vintage on LCBO shelves. Score: 88-89 pts

COLANERI PROFONDO AUMENTO 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (MS) (375 mL) - $19.95
Made from 100% Chenin Blanc, this Recioto-style (i.e. Appassimento) features crisp citrus, lemon and orange and pineapple aromas with lovely replays on palate. Some oak and soft tartness on finish. Easy drinking. Would make a good apertif. Score: 88 pts

COLANERI PROFONDO FUMOSO BIANCO 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (MS) (375 mL) - $19.95
Also made in the Recioto-style, this is 100% Sauvignon Blanc. Very nice guava and passion fruit aromas. Medium-sweet with guava dominating the palate, but also has grapefruit and tropical fruit flavours. Quite pleasurable. Score: 89 pts


SOUTHBROOK VIDAL ICEWINE 2005 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake (#) (S) (375 mL) - $29.95
Organically grown. Peach, burnt sugar, caramel and molasses aromas with nice replays on the palate. Medium-bodied with a syrupy feel. Seems to be past its prime. Score: 89 pts

SMALL TALK ANYONE VIDAL 2009 - (#) (MS) (200 mL) - $20
Peach, honey, and touch of floral rose aromas. Palate consists of peach and floral. Very short finish. Score: 86 pts

COYOTE'S RUN BLACK PAW VINEYARD CHARDONNAY 2010 - VQA Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula (#049775) (XD) - $21.95
Was in Vintages last June. Very elegant buttery and apple aromas. Medium-full bodied with a crisp mouthfeel and bright acidity. Palate shows apple, butter, citrus and minerality. Good balance, with a finish that is a touch hot. Score: 90 pts

COYOTE'S RUN RED PAW VINEYARD CABERNET FRANC 2010 - VQA Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula (#003060) (XD) - $24.95
"Red Paw" is named for the distinctively red Trafalgar clay loam from which these grapes come from. This soil is quite scarce for the Niagara-on-the-Lake region and is approx 450 million years old, stony and rich in iron. This red wine has aromas of red fruits, mineral, and red currant. Very fruit forward with red currant flavours on palate. Medium-full bodied with smooth, integrated tannins and a good, crisp finish. Score: 89 pts


COYOTE'S RUN BLACK PAW VINEYARD CABERNET FRANC 2010 - VQA Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula (#050450) (XD) - $24.95
"Black Paw" vineyard is named for it's heavier, dark Toledo clay loam from which these grapes come from. This soil is rather new - 15,000 years old - and contains more organic matter than the Trafalgar gray, resulting in soil that holds more water and has higher heat retention. This wine has intense dark fruit aromas with some smokiness on display. Dark fruit, smoke and spice flavours on palate. Full-bodied with mouth-watering acidity. Score: 89 pts

COYOTE'S RUN RARE VINTAGE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2010 - VQA Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula (#) (XD) - $39.95
The "Rare Vintage" line is only made during exceptional vintages, and 2010 was an exceptional vintage in Niagara. Smoky, black currant and cassis aromas. Big, juicy tannins that could use another 2 years in bottle. Very good acidity, is touch spicy on mid-palate and finishes a little hot. Score: 90 pts

COYOTE'S RUN RIESLING/VIDAL ICEWINE 2009 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (S) (375 mL) - $49.95
Very nice peach and honey aromas. Syrupy mouthfeel with very nice aroma replays, plus hints of melon. Finish is spicy. Score: 89 pts

STREWN SELECT LATE HARVEST VIDAL 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#107219) (MS) (375 mL) - $16.10
Peach, honey, lemon tart aromas. Medium-bodied with burnt sugar and caramel on palate. Alcohol shows on medium-length finish. Score: 87 pts

STREWN SELECT LATE HARVEST CABERNET 2011 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (MS) (375 mL) - $19.05
Made from Cabernet Franc, this late harvest shows raspberry, strawberry and sweet cherry aromas with nice flavour replays. Finish is a bit hot. Score: 87 pts


RIVERVIEW VIDAL SELECT LATE HARVEST 2011 - VQA Niagara River (#) (MS) (375 mL) - $19.95
Light pear, peach and honey aromas. Sweet pear and light peach flavours, hints of orange. Good acidity with a short finish. Score: 87 pts

RIVERVIEW VIDAL ICEWINE 2011 - VQA Niagara River (#) (S) (375 mL) - $49.95
Very intense peach and honey aromas, with pronounced aromas replays on the palate. High acidity balances the sweetness very well. Very balanced throughout and finishes long. Score: 91 pts

RIVERVIEW RIESLING ICEWINE 2009 - VQA Niagara River (#) (S) (375 mL) - $65
Medley of citrus fruit aromas, plus petrol and mineral aromas. Lots of canned peach flavours on palate. Very bright acidity and long, long finish. Good balance, finishing slightly hot. Yum! Score: 91+ pts

RIVERVIEW CABERNET FRANC ICEWINE 2010 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake (#) (S) (375 mL) - $59.95
Lovely strawberry-cranberry jam, and cherry aromas. Very syrupy viscosity with more strawberry and sweet cranberry flavours. Finish is long and smooth. Delicious. Score: 90 pts

RIVERVIEW SALVATORE'S RESERVE CABERNET FRANC 2010 - (#) (XD) - $34.95 (gone up?)
Intense smokiness, berry jam aromas. Lots of dark fruit, smoke, mocha and coffee notes on palate. Mouth-watering acidity, and a long, smooth finish. Nice! Score: 90+ pts

RIVERVIEW SYRAH 2010 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake (#) (XD) - $29.95
Blackberry, currant, min and vanilla aromas. Full-bodied, big tannins are very well-integrated. Flavour palate consists of peppercorn, currant and mint. Mouth-watering acidity and a lengthy finish. Drinking very well now, could be enjoyed 5 years from now. Score: 91 pts

TAWSE RIESLING 2011 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (D) - $21.95
Smells slightly sweet with melon, citrus and lemon aromas. Flavour profile is similar to aromas, plus some petrol, mineral and beeswax notes. Score: 88 pts

TAWSE RIESLING ICEWINE 2009 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench (#204990) (S) (200 mL) - $34.95
Lovely peach and apricot aromas that follow through on palate, along with citrus notes. Very good acidity and long finish. Score: 91 pts

TAWSE CABERNET FRANC 2010 - VQA Lincoln Lakeshore (#) (XD) - $????
Smoky, blackberry, currant and strawberry aromas. Medium-full bodied with dark fruits and oak showing on palate. Very good acidity, well-balanced and smooth throughout, with a lengthy finish. Score: 89 pts

TAWSE MERLOT/CABERNET 2011 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (XD) - $20.95
Blend of primarily Cab Franc, plus 27% Cab Sauv and 15% Merlot. Fresh berries, raspberry aromas. Dark fruit, dark cherry, mocha and black currant palate. Very good acidity. Good tannins are integrated and will reward 1-2 years cellar time. Score: 89 pts

TAWSE CABERNET SAUVIGNON ICEWINE 2011 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (S) (200 mL) - $34.95
Making Icewine out of Cab Sauv is quite rare. This one has lots of strawberry and blackberry aromas with sweet strawberry flavours on the palate. Ends with a tart, short finish. Score: 88 pts

TAWSE ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2010 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench (#253518) (XD) - $37.95
Blend of grapes from 3 different vineyards that practice organic and biodynamic farming. Intense apple, butter and pear aromas. Light-to-medium bodied with very lively acidity. Apple and pear replays, with under current of minerals and some floral notes. Long finish. Score: 91 pts

TAWSE LAURITZEN VINEYARD PINOT NOIR 2010 - VQA Vinemount Ridge (#) (XD) - $44.95
Red berries and cherry aromas. Beetroot and strawberry flavours showcase fruit really well. Good balance between fruit and oak. Medium-bodied with a medium-long finish. Score: 89 pts

TAWSE LAUNDRY VINEYARD CABERNET FRANC 2010 - VQA Lincoln Lakeshore (#130997) (XD) - $31.95
Organically farmed. Intense crushed red fruit aromas and vanillan. Medium-full bodied with very nicely integrated tannins. Dark fruit, currant and cedar on palate. Oak is very well integrated. Finishes smooth. Will reward 1-2 years in cellar. Score: 90 pts

FIELDING MERLOT 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula (#) (XD) - $30.15
Currant, licorice, and pepper aromas with replays on palate. Spicy pepper notes throughout palate, with hints of mocha. Good tannins, but could use 1-2 years ageing. Medium-bodied and finishing long. Score: 88 pts

FIELDING VIDAL ICEWINE 2010 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake (#086850) (S) (200 mL) - $22.95
Released in Vintages in March. Gorgeous peach, apricot and honey aromas with lovely replays on the palate. Very sweet, but well balanced by acidity. Medium-long finish. Score: 90 pts


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

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  • Tuesday, May 7, 2013

May 11 LCBO Wine Picks: Australia + Rosé

May 11, 2013 LCBO Vintages wine magazine cover
The next batch of wines from LCBO Vintages release will be on shelves on . The major focus of this release is on the "great, powerful and diverse" wines from Australia. However, in my opinion, the majority of these wines are rather uninspiring. So, we'll focus on the secondary feature - Rosé wines that are food-friendly.

Rosé wines are generally blends of various varietals and range from dry to off-dry (i.e. slightly sweet). Which do you prefer? Of the 11 Rosé wines featured, 4 made my list, 3 of which are made in the dry-style.

We'll begin with the dry Muga from Spain, which is made using 60% Garnacha (Grenache), 30% Viura and 10% Tempranillo, and at $12.95, you really can't go wrong with this one.

All wines from the Tavel AOC in southern Rhône are Rosé wines. Tavel is historically famous because the French kings Philippe le Bel and Louis XIV both favoured wines from this region. Grenache and Cinsault are the primary grapes in grown in Tavel. The version from Domaine Maby is dry and made with 57% Grenache Noir and 27% Cinsaut. Seven other varietals make up the rest.

The dry Rosé from Château la Tour de l'Évêque is an organic wine and consists of 46% Cinsault, 25% Mourvèdre, 20% Syrah, 6% Grenache, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Rolle.

And finally, we have a local off-dry Rosé wine from Status Wines called "Wildass". Most Rosé wines are a blend of red grapes only, but the Wildass is a blend of 30% Semillon, 25% Gamay, 22% Syrah, 12% Malbec, and 11% Cab Franc.

Not part of the Rosé wine feature, we also have a Sparkling Rosé Crémant d'Alsace that is dry and consists of 100% Pinot Noir.

From the rest of the release, we have the PI-3.1415 that is made using the local Spanish varietal Concejón (thought to be a clone of Tempranillo) from 80-year-old vines. The Famille Perrin is a red-blend consisting of mostly Grenache, with Mourvèdre and Syrah playing a supporting role. The Château Puech-Haut is a blend of 55% Grenache Noir, 35% Syrah and 10% Carignan.

Enjoy my wine picks for this week! Let me know if you buy and try anything. I'd love to hear from you! Cheers!


Red Wine:
  • BODEGAS LANGA PI-3.1415 CONCEJÓN 2008 - Wine of Aragón, Spain (#313841) (XD) - $17.95
  • CATENA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2010 - Mendoza, Argentina (#985002) (XD) - $19.95
  • DOMAINE LES GRANDS BOIS CUVÉE PHILIPPINE CÔTES DU RHÔNE-VILLAGES 2010 - AC, Rhône, France (#286344) (XD) - $19.95  reviewed here
  • FAMILLE PERRIN LES SINARDS CHÂTEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE 2010 - AC, Rhône, France (#005975) (XD) (375 mL) - $19.95
  • CHÂTEAU VIALLET NOUHANT 2009 - Cru Artisan, AC Haut-Médoc, Bordeaux, France (#321398) (XD) - $21.95
  • CHÂTEAU PUECH-HAUT PRESTIGE SAINT-DRÉZÉRY 2010 - DOP Languedoc, Midi, France (#237289) (XD) - $26.95
  • LADIES WHO SHOOT THEIR LUNCH SHIRAZ 2010 - Strathbogie Ranges, Victoria, Australia (#243592) (D) - $35.95

White Wine:
  • WILLIAM FÈVRE SAUVIGNON BLANC SAINT-BRIS 2011 - AC, Burgundy, France (#626523) (XD) - $17.95
  • TIEFENBRUNNER PINOT GRIGIO 2012 - DOC Südtirol-Alto Adige, Italy (#954024) (XD) - $18.95
  • TYRRELL’S BROOKDALE SEMILLON 2012 - Hunter Valley, New South Wales, Australia (#269316) (D) - $19.95
  • FORREST ESTATE THE DOCTORS’ SAUVIGNON BLANC 2011 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#317842) (XD) - $19.95
  • DOMAINE SERGE DAGUENEAU & FILLES TRADITION POUILLY-FUMÉ 2011 - AC, Loire, France (#323634) (XD) - $28.95
  • DR. PAULY-BERGWEILER BERNKASTELER BADSTUBE RIESLING AUSLESE 2010 - Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#678011) (MS) - $29.95
  • HARTFORD FOUR HEARTS VINEYARDS CHARDONNAY 2010 - Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California, USA (#095919) (D) - $49.95

Rosé Wine:
  • MUGA ROSÉ 2012 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#603795) (XD) - $12.95
  • DOMAINE MABY LA FORCADIÈRE TAVEL ROSÉ 2012 - AC, Rhône, France (#701318) (XD) - $16.95
  • CHÂTEAU LA TOUR DE L’ÉVÊQUE ROSÉ 2012 - Hand Harvested, AC Côtes de Provence, France (#319392) (XD) - $18.95
  • WILDASS ROSÉ 2012 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#071712) (D) - $19.95

Sparkling Wine:
  • DOMAINE ALLIMANT-LAUGNER ROSÉ CRÉMANT D’ALSACE - AC, Alsace, France (#319939) (XD) - $19.95



The rest of the wines from this release can be found here.


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