Showing posts with label fortified. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fortified. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

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  • Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Southbrook Whimsy! The Anniversary (Niagara) - Wine Review



I opened up this delicious Fortified wine to celebrate it's recent Gold Medal at the 2017 National Wine Awards of Canada (NWAC). Looking at the results from this competition, this is the top Fortified wine in Canada!

This wine is produced by Southbrook Vineyards, and is one of many Southbrook wines I've tasted from a winery that is Canada's first certified organic and biodynamic winery. Southbrook has built a solid reputation for its strict adherence to biodynamic and organic winemaking, and more recently, announced that it had cut its electricity consumption by 80% by with the installation of a new photovoltaic field as part of its commitment to sustainability and energy reduction program.

Ann Sperling, Director of Winemaking and Viticulture at Southbrook Vineyards crafted the award-winning wines across several categories, including the Framboise (Fruit Wine category), 2016 Orange Skin Fermented Vidal (White Single Varietal category), and the 2016 Organic Wild Ferment Cider (Cider category). Also an award-winner is the lovely 2013 Southbrook Estate Witness Block (Red Blend category) that I tasted earlier this year. In total, Southbrook garnered five medals across five different categories, showing excellence across a broad range of wines.

This very yummy fortified wine is only available at the winery and can be ordered online through their web store.

Southbrook Whimsy! The Anniversary (91 pts)

Tasting Note:

SOUTHBROOK WHIMSY! THE ANNIVERSARY - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (S) - $29.95
Made with 100% Chardonnay harvested in 2002 (!), then fortified with a neutral grain spirit, which was then followed by extended natural aging without intervention. This was bottled in 2011 and then aged for 2 years prior to release. Enclosed by screw cap. Highly intense aromas with an oxidative character of orange, spice, nutty, dried fig and apricot aromas wafting from the glass. It gives the impression of a very sweet fortified wine, but the medium+ bodied is actually quite dry with just a hint of sweetness. Roasted nuts, dried fig, orange and burnt sugar notes embody the flavour profile. Slightly warming with a very smooth, long finish. Lovely. Very Sherry/Madeira-like. Give it a slight chill and enjoy after dinner. Score: 91 pts


Sunday, July 24, 2016

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  • Sunday, July 24, 2016

Byrrh Grand Quinquina (France) - Review

Here's an interesting wine-based apertif I received to review and is now available at LCBO locations throughout the province.

Byrrh (pronounced "beer") was created in 1866 by brothers Pallade and Simon Violet in the small village of Thuir, France. Initially, it was distributed in pharmacies and appreciated for its medicinal benefits. Over time, Byrrh became a feature in bistros and grew in popularity through the Belle Époque (1890s - 1910s) and the Années folles (1920s). By 1935, Byrrh was the leading apertif brand in France with sales of more than 35 million litres.

The Bryrrh Grand Quinquina original recipe has remained unchanged since 1866 and is amazingly still produced in the original production facility in Thuir that was designed by Gustave Eiffel (of the famed tower) and created in 1873.

It is hand-crafted and produced by the maceration of the mistelles, naturally sweet and fruity wines (Macabeu and Grenache) which are then infused in alcohol with aromatic plants including coffee, bitter orange, colombo, cocoa, and the finest cinchona (quinine) barks. The final blend is then aged several years in one of the world's largest oak vats (1 million litres).

Byrrh Grand Quinquina - Roussillon, France (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

BYRRH GRAND QUINQUINA - Roussillon, France (#440909) (S) - $14.90
Grapey, caramel, nutty, golden raisin aromas, along with hints of sweet spice from the glass. Viscous, silky mouthfeel that's slightly warming with flavours of blackberry, orange peel, raisin, some potpourri and walnut. The palate is initially sweet, but finishes long and on the earthy, nutty side. Ideal as an apertif. I enjoyed this well-chilled, but it can also be mixed into a cocktail. Score: 87 pts

Serving Suggestions:

Byrrh on the Rocks - Served on ice

Byrrh Tonic - 1 part Byrrh Grand Quinquina, 1/2 freshly squeezed Lemon, 1 part Tonic water

Byyrh Blood & Sand - 1 part Byrrh Grand Quinquina, 1 part Te Bheag Scotch Whisky, 1 part freshly squeezed Orange Juice, 1 part Cherry Heering or Filthy Black Cherry


Sunday, April 5, 2015

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  • Sunday, April 5, 2015

Wines from Peloponnese, Greece

Wines of Peloponnese
This is the first post in a series that will feature the wines of Peloponnese to celebrate (April 12th) this year. In addition to the wines, I also received some very nice Greek products that I will be tweeting about over the coming days.

The Peloponnese wine region is located in the southern peninsula of Greece and is (mostly) separated from mainland Greece by the Gulf of Corinth. It is also the largest winemaking area in Greece. This region is home to ancient Olympia, site of the first Olympic Games, and has been producing wine for at least 4,000 years. Popular native grape varieties grown within the Peloponnese are Agiorgitiko, Moschofilero and Mavrodaphne.

Moschofilero (MOH-skoh-FEE-leh-roh) is a fragrant white grape with gray/pink/purple skin that exhibits floral, spice and perfumed characteristics. The wine reviewed below comes from Arcadia, in central Peloponnese, and shows very good typicity for the grape.

Agiorgitiko (ah-yohr-YEE-tee-koh) has to be one of the most difficult-to-pronounce grapes around. Fortunately, it also goes by the name 'St. George'. This black-skinned grape produces red wines that are quite fruity, as in the version below, similar to the Italian Barbera. Agiorgitiko is the second most widely planted red grape in all of Greece.

The last wine reviewed below is a blend using the Mavrodaphne and Black Korinthiaki grapes. The Mavrodaphne varietal is a black wine grape native to the Achaea region in Northern Peloponnese. It is typically used to produce fortified wine, as the Kourtaki is below. It is also typically blended using the solera method, which then produces a non-vintage wine.

The 2013 vintage of the Greek harvest is being hailed as one of the best in recent years, especially for white grapes. It showed in the Moschofilero. All the three wines reviewed below were quite easy drinking, have good crowd-appeal, and come at attractive price points at the LCBO.

Stay with me as I find kefi while taking you through the three remaining wines (two of which are from the 2013 vintage) to celebrate Easter and the wines of Peloponnese.

Tasting Notes:
TROUPIS FTERI MOSCHOFILERO 2013 - IGP Arcadia, Peloponnese, Greece (#392936) (XD) - $15.20
Very pale yellow colour, almost clear white. Fragrant aromatics that show floral, citrus, peach and some lychee and herbal notes as it warms up. The palate is medium-bodied and creamy with balanced acids. Flavour profile consists of floral, white peach and hints of orange. Initial kiss of sweetness tapers off into the dry spectrum. Decent length on the finish. A very good introduction to the grape. Readily available as it's LCBO General List. Score: 87 pts

2013 Troupis Fteri Moschofilero from IGP Arcadia, Peloponnese, Greece (87 pts)

BOUTARI AGIORGITIKO 2013 - PDO Nemea, Peloponnese, Greece (#172148) (XD) - $11.85
Plum and prune aromas from the cork. Medium intensity nose with red cherry, red currant and soft floral aromas. Palate is medium-bodied and dry, with soft, rounded tannins, balanced acids and red currant, cherry and mild spice flavours. Average length finish. Simple, easy drinking red. Readily available as it's LCBO General List. Score: 86 pts

2013 Boutari Agiorgitiko from PDO Nemea, Peloponnese, Greece (86 pts)

KOURTAKI MAVRODAPHNE OF PATRAS - PDO, Peloponnese, Greece (#208413) (S) - $14.95
Blend of Mavrodaphne and Black Korinthiaki. Prune and raisin aromas from the cork. Medium intensity aroams of raisins, dried figs, caramel and dates with medium sweet aroma replays on the palate. Smooth, slightly creamy texture, light-to-mid weight body with good acids. Medium length finish that has notes of semi-sweet milk chocolate from a hot fudge sundae. Serve well-chilled. This fortified wine was recently released into VINTAGES on March 21 and has good inventory levels. Score: 86 pts

Kourtaki Mavrodaphne of Patras from PDO, Peloponnese, Greece (86 pts)


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