There is a mini-theme in this release, but it is a rather poor collection of wines from "The Oher Side of Europe". Countries featured include Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Republic of Macedonia, and Romania and are historically significant in the wine world, but are not widely known wine regions.
Back to the main theme of Ontario wines, there are 21 wines featured and 8 are included in my wine picks below. Ontario makes very nice Pinot Noir. Included among my wine picks are two Pinots - one from Niagara and one from Prince Edward County (PEC); both are lovely, but the version from PEC is a world-class wine. Ontario is also making a name for itself with the Gamay Noir grape and one of the versions from 13th Street will be available this Saturday. The other Gamay I have selected is from one of the pioneers of Gamay in Ontario - Château des Charmes. However, this is made using a clone of Gamay that was born in their vineyard in the early 1980's on St. David's Bench and is known as Gamay Noir Droit.
Among Ontario white wines, there are a pair of Rieslings that have a just a kiss of sweetness to them. And of course, no talk about Ontario wine would be complete without a mention of Icewine. Included in this release is a delicious Vidal Icewine from Reif, and a Late Harvest Riesling from Cave Spring.
It's interesting to note that none of the 21 Ontario wines selected was a pure Cabernet Franc. I was also disappointed with the Ontario Chardonnay selection in this release. It seems like a missed opportunity to showcase these two wonderful grapes. Do you enjoy Ontario Cabernet Franc and Chardonnay? Post a comment and let me know.
From the rest of the release, the La Rosa is a blend of Touriga Nacional (30%), Touriga Franca and Tinta Roriz (a.k.a. Tempranillo), while the Rompesedas is a mature Tempranillo that is also one of the Wines of the Month in this release. Lastly, the Taurasi from Italy is made with 100% Aglianico.
In white wines, there are three Viogniers from three different continents to choose from - two at the lower end of the price spectrum, while the third is a Flagship Store Exclusive (FSE) and will be available in small quantities at VINTAGES Flagship Stores. The Atlantis Dry White is a blend of local varietals Assyrtiko (90%), Aidani (5%), and Athiri (5%) from Greece.
For sweet wine lovers, there are the two aforementioned dessert wines from Ontario, and also a German Riesling Spätlese that is an FSE.
Enjoy my wine recommendations from this release! Cheers!
- CHÂTEAU DES CHARMES ST. DAVID’S BENCH VINEYARD GAMAY NOIR DROIT 2012 - VQA St. David’s Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#346742) (XD) - $16.95 reviewed here
- KEINT-HE VOYAGEUR PINOT NOIR 2013 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#373407) (D) - $19.00 reviewed here
- LA ROSA TINTO 2011 - DOC Douro, Portugal (#933101) (XD) - $19.95
- 13TH STREET GAMAY NOIR 2013 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#177824) (D) - $19.95 reviewed here
- ROMPESEDAS 2006 - DO Toro, Spain (#425868) (XD) - $19.95
- TRINITY HILL SYRAH 2013 - Hawkes Bay, North Island, New Zealand (#194274) (XD) - $22.95
- NORMAN HARDIE COUNTY UNFILTERED PINOT NOIR 2013 - VQA Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada (#125310) (XD) - $39.00 reviewed here
- TRAPICHE TERROIR SERIES ORELLANA DE ESCOBAR SINGLE VINEYARD MALBEC 2010 - La Consulta, Mendoza, Argentina (#178145) (D) - $39.95
- CANTINE LONARDO TAURASI RED 2008 - DOCG, Campania, Italy (#418707) (XD) - $44.95 FSE
- AURELIO SETTIMO ROCCHE DELL’ANNUNZIATA BAROLO 2010 - DOCG, Piedmont, Italy (#293761) (XD) - $57.95 reviewed here
- TABALÍ RESERVA VIOGNIER 2013 - Limarí Valley, Chile (#406967) (XD) - $13.95
- DOMINIO DE PUNCTUM VIENTO ALISEO VIOGNIER 2014 - DO La Mancha, Spain (#424713) (XD) - $15.95
- ARGYROS ATLANTIS DRY WHITE 2014 - PGI Cyclades, Santorini, Greece (#371658) (XD) - $17.95
- KEW VINEYARDS ORGANIC RIESLING 2013 - VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#426460) (D) - $18.95
- THIRTY BENCH RIESLING 2013 - VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#024133) (D) - $18.95
- AUNTSFIELD SINGLE VINEYARD SAUVIGNON BLANC 2014 - Southern Valleys, Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#663286) (XD) - $20.95 reviewed here
- BISCHÖFLICHE WEINGÜTER TRIER SCHARZHOFBERGER RIESLING SPÄTLESE 2012 - Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#424721) (S) - $31.95 FSE
- SCHIOPETTO PINOT GRIGIO 2013 - DOC Collio, Friuli, Italy (#234757) (XD) - $32.95 FSE
- STAGS’ LEAP WINERY VIOGNIER 2013 - Napa Valley, California, USA (#597369) (D) - $34.95 FSE
- ANTECH RÉSERVE BRUT BLANQUETTE DE LIMOUX 2012 - AC, Midi, France (#656470) (D) - $16.95
- RENE GEOFFROY EXPRESSION BRUT 1 ER CRU - AC, Champagne, France (#421008) (D) - $49.95
- CAVE SPRING INDIAN SUMMER SELECT LATE HARVEST RIESLING 2013 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#415901) (S) (375 mL) - $24.95
- REIF VIDAL ICEWINE 2013 - VQA Niagara River, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#544791) (S) (200 mL) - $24.95 reviewed here