Showing posts with label south-africa. Show all posts
Showing posts with label south-africa. Show all posts

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  • Monday, August 5, 2019

Nederburg The Winemasters Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 (South Africa) - Wine Review



Tonight's wine review is this casual, fairly easy-drinking Cabernet Sauvignon from South Africa. It was opened on as the 2017 vintage recently arrived at the LCBO and is widely available throughout Ontario.

The story of Nederburg begins in 1791, when Philippus Wolvaart bought a farm that lay between the Berg and Palmiet rivers for 5600 guilder. Philippus was a man of courage and vision, as well as love for winemaking. With his wife, Margaretha, they nurtured the land together to build a strong foundation on which the success of Nederburg flourished.

Today, Nederburg is one of South Africa’s most awarded wineries, with a prize-winning pedigree that stems from a culture of innovation and disciplined attention to detail. Their portfolio consists of many different lines of wines.

The Winemasters range of wines consist of varietal offerings and named to honour the Paarl winery's long-established tradition of winemaking excellence. These classically styled, food-friendly wines have abundant fruit flavours, elegance and finesse, while treasuring the integrity of the grape in every step of the winegrowing and winemaking process. Every drop aims to demonstrate a commitment to vineyard and cellar skills.

Nederburg The Winemasters Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

NEDERBURG THE WINEMASTERS CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2017 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#111526) (D) - $13.95
The medium intensity nose is herbaceous with green pepper, red and black fruit aromas that are layered on top of cassis, oak spice notes. The medium+ bodied palate has herbally, ripe currant, and dark plum flavours, along with subtle oak spice characters. Acids are balanced while tannins are soft and supple. Finish length is very good. Score: 87 pts


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  • Wednesday, July 31, 2019

August 3, 2019 LCBO VINTAGES Release Wine Picks: Taste Trends + South Africa

LCBO Wine Picks: August 3, 2019 VINTAGES Release
The main theme of the upcoming August 3, 2019 LCBO VINTAGES Release is titled "Taste Trends" and focuses on European wines that represent four current taste trends, while the mini-theme looks at wines from South Africa. All of these wines, plus those from the rest of the Release will arrive on LCBO VINTAGES by this Saturday.

We'll begin with the main theme that looks at four trends among European wines. Of the fifteen wines featured, just two are included among top wine picks and both are from the first trend that states that rosé wines are being enjoyed more and more all-year-round - instead of only during the spring and summer months. I am definitely on-board with this trend and enjoy having rosé during the colder months. Both of these rosés are from Provence and can be enjoyed any time of the year - the first is the Perle de Roseline Rosé, while the second wine is from Château la Tour de l’Évêque and is a blend of eight varietals - 41% Cinsault, 29% Grenache, 18% Syrah, 6% Rolle, 2% Mourvèdre, 2% Ugni Blanc, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Sémillon.

Château la Tour de l’Évêque Rosé 2018 (90 pts)Perle de Roseline Rosé 2018 (89 pts)

The South African mini-theme lists eight wines, of which four are included among my top wine recommendations from South Africa. First up is a Shiraz that was sourced from the southernmost vineyards in Africa. The country is also known for producing quality Chenin Blanc, and the version in this Release is from South Africa's highest altitude vineyards - approximately 1,000 m above sea level. There's also an elegant Chardonnay, while the excellent Cabernet Sauvignon is one of my top wines of the Release.

Spier 21 Gables Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 (92 pts)De Wetshof Lesca Estate Chardonnay 2018 (91 pts)

Cederberg Chenin Blanc 2018 (89 pts)Strandveld First Sighting Shiraz 2016 (88 pts)

From the rest of the Release and among my top red wine picks, the Atemporal from Argentina is a blend of 60% Malbec, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 15% Petit Verdot. From Portugal, the Beira Interior red is a blend of Tinta Roriz, Trincadeira, and Tinta Barroca, while the Dão red consists of Touriga Nacional and Alfrocheiro. Lastly, the baby Ornellaia is a blend of 50% Merlot, 30% Sangiovese, and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, while the lovely Bordeaux red is a blend of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc.

Château Beauséjour 2015 (91 pts)Le Volte dell’Ornellaia 2017 (90 pts)

Insurgente Vinho Tinto 2015 (89 pts)Almeida Garrett Entre Serras 2015 (88 pts)

Among my white wine picks from the rest of the Release, the Bourgogne is made with Chardonnay, while the Lugana from Lombardy is made with Turbiana / Trebbiano di Lugana, also known as Verdicchio. From Loire, the Saumur is actually made with Chenin Blanc, while the Sancerre is, of course, made with Sauvignon Blanc. For those that prefer sweeter wines, you can enjoy the Riesling from Alsace.

Blason de Bourgogne 2016 (88 pts)Château de Montguéret 2017 (88+ pts)

Enjoy my wine recommendations from this Release! Cheers!

Red Wine:

  • ALMEIDA GARRETT ENTRE SERRAS 2015 - DOC Beira Interior, Portugal (#646919) (XD) - $12.95  88 pts  wine review
  • ARGENTO RESERVA CABERNET FRANC 2015 - Mendoza, Argentina (#668335) (XD) - $14.95  88 pts  wine review
  • STRANDVELD FIRST SIGHTING SHIRAZ 2016 - WO Cape South Coast, South Africa (#652693) (XD) - $14.95  88 pts  wine review
  • INSURGENTE VINHO TINTO 2015 - DOC Dão, Portugal (#630947) (XD) - $17.95  89 pts  wine review
  • LAURENT PERRACHON ROCHE BLEUE JULIÉNAS 2016 - AC, Beaujolais, France (#487165) (XD) - $20.95
  • ALTA VISTA ATEMPORAL 2015 - Albaneve Vineyard, Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina (#144352) (XD) - $22.95
  • LE VOLTE DELL’ORNELLAIA 2017 - IGT Toscana, Italy (#964221) (XD) - $29.95  90 pts  wine review
  • CHÂTEAU BEAUSÉJOUR 2015 - AC Puisseguin-Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux, France (#644708) (XD) - $37.95  91 pts  wine review
  • SPIER 21 GABLES CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014 - WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#651810) (XD) - $39.95  92 pts  wine review
  • SILVIO NARDI BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO 2013 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#922054) (XD) - $50.95  92 pts  wine review
Silvio Nardi Brunello di Montalcino 2013 (92 pts)Argento Reserva Cabernet Franc 2015 (88 pts)

White Wine:

  • BLASON DE BOURGOGNE 2016 - AC Mâcon-Villages, Burgundy, France (#648451) (XD) - $17.95  88 pts  wine review
  • CHÂTEAU DE MONTGUÉRET 2017 - AP Saumur, Loire, France (#667527) (XD) - $17.95  88+ pts  wine review
  • CEDERBERG CHENIN BLANC 2018 - WO Cederberg, South Africa (#651711) (XD) - $18.95  89 pts  wine review
  • DELTA ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2017 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#149542) (XD) - $19.95  89 pts  wine review
  • DE WETSHOF LESCA ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2018 - WO Robertson, South Africa (#355438) (XD) - $24.95  91 pts  wine review
  • CHARLES SPARR GRAND CRU SCHOENENBOURG RIESLING 2012 - AC Alsace Grand Cru, France (#667279) (M) - $24.95  FE
  • TENUTA ROVEGLIA VIGNE DI CATULLO RISERVA LUGANA 2014 - VQPRD, DOC, Lombardy, Italy (#437004) (D) - $26.95
  • CLOSSON CHASE VINEYARD CHARDONNAY 2017 - VQA Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada (#148866) (D) - $29.95
  • PASCAL JOLIVET SANCERRE 2018 - AC, Loire, France (#264945) (XD) - $31.95
Delta Estate Chardonnay 2017 (89 pts)

Rosé Wine:

  • CHÂTEAU VAL-JOANIS TRADITION ROSÉ 2018 - AP Luberon, Rhône, France (#707281) (XD) - $16.95
  • MALIVOIRE VIVANT ROSÉ 2018 - VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#498535) (XD) - $19.95  90 pts  wine review
  • PERLE DE ROSELINE ROSÉ 2018 - AP Côtes de Provence, France (#667345) (XD) - $19.95  89 pts  wine review
  • CHÂTEAU LA TOUR DE L’ÉVÊQUE ROSÉ 2018 - AC Côtes de Provence, France (#319392) (XD) - $19.95  90 pts  wine review
  • CHÂTEAU PIGOUDET CLASSIC ROSÉ 2018 - AP Coteaux d'Aix en Provence, France (#668434) (XD) - $24.95  91 pts  wine review
Château Pigoudet Classic Rosé 2018 (91 pts)Malivoire Vivant Rosé 2018 (90 pts)


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  • Saturday, May 25, 2019

Fleur du Cap Essence du Cap Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 (South Africa) - Wine Review

Approximately three years ago, I enjoyed the 2013 Fleur du Cap Cabernet Sauvignon from South Africa. , I am opening the 2016 vintage of this LCBO General List red wine that is readily available across Ontario.

The story of Fleur du Cap wines begins in 1968, shortly after the opening of the famous Die Bergkelder, a cellar that cuts deep into the Papegaaiberg (Parrot Mountain) in Stellenbosch. It was built by Dr. Anton Rupert and was the first underground bottle maturation cellar of its kind in the southern hemisphere. The team at Die Bergkelder were important innovators of the wine industry in South Africa as they played a pivotal role in establishing classic noble grape varieties in the vineyards of the Cape and introduced the maturation of quality wine in small casks of new French oak.

The Essence du Cap range of wines are known for their value and the ability to express their true varietal character. The grapes for this Cabernet Sauvignon were sourced from different blocks in Stellenbosch, with the bulk coming from Stellenbosch Kloof. The vines are between 11 and 22 years of age and were grown according to South Africa's IPW pest and disease control standards - Integrity and Sustainability Certified.

Fleur du Cap Essence du Cap Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

FLEUR DU CAP ESSENCE DU CAP CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#457101) (XD) - $13.00
Medium+ intensity nose leads with wood spice and chocolate, surrounding the core aromas of black cherry, currant, cassis, and touches of green pepper. It is medium-full bodied on the palate with ripe flavoured aroma replays and sweet tannins that have some grip. It has juicy acids and a lingering black cherry, cassis and oak spiced finish. Score: 87 pts


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  • Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Two Oceans Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (South Africa) - Wine Review

wine review is an easy-drinking, mid-week Sauvignon Blanc from South Africa that is a General List product at the LCBO and widely available across Ontario. Looking through my blog, I see that I tasted the 2011 Two Oceans Sauvignon Blanc .

Two Oceans is named after the awe-inspiring view at the southern tip of Africa, where the two powerful forces of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet. The sheer scale and natural grandeur will give you pause and a chance to reflect, leaving you inspired, exhilarated and breathless. The wines of Two Oceans are inspired by this special place, where the elements of climate and natural beauty combine to create wines that are crisp, refreshing and easy drinking.

The grapes for this white wine come from vineyards in Stellenbosch, Paarl, Robertson and Worcester wine regions. The age of the vines ranges between 10 and 18 years of age and are grown in soils ranging from decomposed granite to deep Clovelly and Hutton, and are located 200 metres above sea level.

Two Oceans Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

TWO OCEANS SAUVIGNON BLANC 2018 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#340380) (XD) - $11.00
Screw cap. Pale straw colour. Quite generous and fresh on the nose with tropical fruit, lemon citrus zest, and grapefruit with a tinge of grassy and gooseberry aromas. The medium-bodied palate with fleshy with crisp acidity. Flavours are a touched honeyed with grapefruit and lemon citrus notes. Dry overall with herbal and earthy mineral notes on the finish. Widely appealing wine to chill well and pair with fish or poultry. Score: 87 pts


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  • Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Wine Picks LCBO VINTAGES Release Jan. 19, 2019: Euro + South Africa

LCBO Wine Picks: January 19, 2019 VINTAGES Release
The LCBO VINTAGES Release is the second release of the year and continues the value parade with wines from Europe for Hearty Winter Suppers as the main theme, while the mini-theme highlights wines from South Africa. All of the wines from the two themes, plus many more will be on LCBO VINTAGES shelves across Ontario this .

We'll begin with the main theme that features European wines for Hearty Winter Suppers. There are 12 European wines paired with 6 classically regional dishes. Only 3 of these wines are included among my wine picks - the Scopeto Super Tuscan is a blend of 40% Sangiovese, 20% Syrah, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 20% Merlot, while the Lirac from Rhône is a blend of Syrah and Grenache. The third and final wine is an excellent semi-sweet Riesling from Mosel, Germany.

In the mini-theme, there are 9 wines featured from South Africa, a wine region considered "New World" but has been producing wine since the 17th century. Six wines from South Africa made my list of wine picks, including a Chenin Blanc, an Unoaked Chardonnay, and an excellent white wine blend made with 65% Chenin Blanc, 10% Viognier, 10% Clairette Blanche, 13% Grenache Blanc, and 2% Sémillon Gris. Among the reds, there are single varietal wines made with Grenache and Shiraz, while the sparkling wine is made with 100% Pinot Noir. This is a very nice selection of South Africa wines.

Borgo Scopeto Chianti Classico 2015 (88 pts)

From my top red wine picks of the Release, the Chianti Classico is a blend of 90% Sangiovese, 5% Merlot, and 5% Colorino, while the Gabarda is a blend of 85% Cariñena (Carignan) and 15% Garnacha. The Douro red is a field blend of indigenous varietals, and the Meritage from B.C. is a blend of 35% Cabernet Franc, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot, and 2% Petit Verdot.

Among my top white wine recommendations, the Australian blend has slightly more Semillon (from Hunter Valley) than Sauvignon Blanc (from Orange), while the Venetian is a barely off-dry (i.e. hint of sweetness) blend containing Garganega, Cortese, and Riesling. If you prefer your wines sweet, the Rheingau Riesling, as well as the aforementioned Mosel Riesling from Germany are both lovely!

It was nice to find a quality dry rosé in this Release as well, with a very good wine from Provence that is a blend of 42% Cinsault, 34% Grenache, and 24% Syrah.

Enjoy my wine recommendations from this Release! Cheers!

Red Wine:

  • BORGO SCOPETO CHIANTI CLASSICO 2015 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#023325) (XD) - $16.95  88 pts  wine review
  • SALENTEIN RESERVE MALBEC 2016 - Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina (#640854) (XD) - $17.95
  • BORGO SCOPETO BORGONERO 2015 - IGT Toscana, Italy (#421396) (XD) - $18.95
  • LEEUWENKUIL GRENACHE NOIR 2016 - WO Swartland, South Africa (#630871) (XD) - $19.95
  • GABARDA SELECCIÓN 2015 - DO Cariñena, Spain (#629139) (XD) - $19.95
  • JOURNEY’S END SHIRAZ 2015 - Single vineyard, WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#337642) (XD) - $21.95
  • LUA CHEIA EM VINHAS VELHAS RESERVA ESPECIAL TINTO 2015 - DOC Douro, Portugal (#610287) (XD) - $21.95
  • XAVIER VIGNON LIRAC 2016 - AP, Rhône, France (#636183) (XD) - $22.95
  • EL VALAO PAGO DE VALDONEJE MENCÍA 2015 - DO Bierzo, Spain (#629204) (XD) - $24.95  FE
  • OUTLOT CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014 - Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, California, USA (#633537) (XD) - $29.95
  • MISSION HILL FAMILY ESTATE RESERVE MERITAGE 2016 - VQA Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada (#633628) (XD) - $29.95

White Wine:

  • GORGO SAN MICHELIN CUSTOZA 2017 - DOC, Veneto, Italy (#428045) (D) - $16.95
  • JARDIN INSPECTOR PÉRINGUEY CHENIN BLANC 2016 - WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#443473) (XD) - $17.95
  • SCHLOSS SCHÖNBORN ESTATE RIESLING 2012 - Qualitätswein, Rheingau, Germany (#653535) (MS) - $18.95
  • PEPPER TREE ESTATE GROWN SEMILLON/SAUVIGNON BLANC 2017 - Hunter Valley/Orange, New South Wales, Australia (#632067) (XD) - $19.95
  • ERADUS SAUVIGNON BLANC 2017 - Awatere Valley, Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#225557) (XD) - $19.95
  • DE WETSHOF BON VALLON UNWOODED CHARDONNAY 2017 - WO Robertson, South Africa (#403675) (XD) - $22.95
  • BISCHÖFLICHE WEINGÜTER TRIER PIESPORTER GOLDTROPFCHEN RIESLING KABINETT 2016 - Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#629998) (MS) - $25.95
  • MULLINEUX OLD VINES WHITE 2017 - WO Swartland, South Africa (#556597) (XD) - $37.95
  • JEAN-MARC BROCARD VAU DE VAY CHABLIS 1ER CRU 2015 - AC, Burgundy, France (#159012) (XD) - $39.95

Rosé Wine:

  • CHÂTEAU DE L’AUMÉRADE CUVÉE MARIE-CHRISTINE ROSÉ 2017 - AC Provence, France (#562785) (XD) - $19.95

Sparkling Wine:

  • BON COURAGE JACQUES BRUÉRE CUVÉE ROSÉ BRUT 2011 - Traditional method, WO Robertson, South Africa (#630855) (D) - $24.95

Fortified:

  • SAN LEÓN MANZANILLA - DO Manzanilla Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Spain (#703066) (D) - $21.95


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  • Saturday, December 8, 2018

Gourmet Food & Wine Expo 2018 - Top Wines

2018 Gourmet Food & Wine Expo
On a cold night in November, I attended the 24th annual Gourmet Food & Wine Expo - a 4-day event that ran through . The first night was VIP Preview Night and attendance seemed a bit lighter than previous years. There also seemed to be fewer food and wine booths, but more craft breweries. Since my focus was mostly on the wines, I traversed the floor seeking some of the finest on offer and had a great time chatting with familiar faces en route.

Some of the highlights included wines in the Fine Wine Tasting Lounge, and at the Kolonaki Group booth where they featured many lovely Greek wines. There were also some fine wines at Wines from Spain, Wines of South Africa, Villa Maria Wines of New Zealand, and Grenache Wines booths. Here are some of my favourites from the show. All of these wines are available via the LCBO unless otherwise noted. Thank you Foodies on Foot for the tickets I won through their online contest!


CHAMPAGNE CUVÉE CARBON BRUT - AC, France (XD) - $350  92 pts
The official Champagne of Formula 1. Exclusive bottle wrapped in carbon looks awesome! Available via Bianchi & Nero.

Champagne Cuvée Carbon Brut (92 pts)Vidal Legacy Chardonnay 2016 (93 pts)

VIDAL LEGACY CHARDONNAY 2016 - Hawkes Bay, New Zealand (#570895) (XD) - $60  93 pts

CUNE GRAN RESERVA 2011 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#393553) (XD) - $39.95  92 pts

Cune Gran Reserva 2011 (92 pts)Mega Spileo Grand Cave Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 (91 pts)

MEGA SPILEO GRAND CAVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2011 - PGI Achaia, Greece (#539924) (XD) - $27.95  91 pts
Available via Shop Greek Wine.

MARTIN BERDUGO RESERVA 2010 - DO Ribera del Duero, Spain (#233741) (XD) - $38  91 pts

Martin Berdugo Reserva 2010 (91 pts)Te Awa Left Field Syrah 2015 (90+ pts)

TE AWA LEFT FIELD SYRAH 2015 - Hawkes Bay, North Island, New Zealand (#377837) (XD) - $24.95  90+ pts

ARGYROS ASSYRTIKO 2017 - PDO Santorini, Greece (#387365) (XD) - $32  90+ pts
Available via Shop Greek Wine.

Argyros Assyrtiko 2017 (90+ pts)Ken Forrester Old Vine Reserve Chenin Blanc 2017 (90 pts)

KEN FORRESTER OLD VINE RESERVE CHENIN BLANC 2017 - WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#231282) (XD) - $17.95  90 pts

ONTAÑÓN RESERVA 2010 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#725895) (XD) - $25.95  90 pts

Ontañón Reserva 2010 (90 pts)Gérard Bertrand Grand Terroir Les Aspres Syrah/Mourvèdre/Grenache 2015 (89 pts)

GÉRARD BERTRAND GRAND TERROIR LES ASPRES SYRAH / MOURVÈDRE  / GRENACHE 2015 - AP Côtes du Roussillon Les Aspres, France (#413245) (XD) - $18.95  89 pts

UMBERTO CESARI LIANO SANGIOVESE / CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015 - IGT Rubicone, Emilia-Romagna, Italy (#225086) (D) - $27.95  88 pts

Umberto Cesari Liano Sangiovese/Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 (88 pts)


Champagne Cuvée Carbon Brut
Kolonaki Group - ShopGreekWine.com
Foods & Wine from Spain
Wines of South Africa
Garnacha and Grenache Wines


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  • Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Nederburg Manor House Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 (South Africa) - Wine Review

wine is a companion to the Nederburg Manor House Shiraz that I enjoyed on the. Like it's companion, this red wine is an LCBO VINTAGES product. However, since this Cabernet Sauvignon was released into VINTAGES last , there isn't much inventory available at the moment, but I suspect new stock will arrive in short order.

Produced by Nederburg, one of South Africa's most awarded wineries, the grapes for this wine were sourced from two dryland sites in the Paarl and Groenekloof regions where the soil is red/yellow Tukulu/Clovelly and ideal for root penetration. Both sites are low-yielding and produced small-berried, loose bunches picked at good phenolic ripeness. The Groenekloof fruit provided strong aromatics and dark fruit flavours, while the Paarl fruit contributed red fruit and gooseberry characters. Each block of fruit was vinified separately and matured in a combination of new-, second-, and third-fill French oak barrels for a period of 18 months prior to blending.

Nederburg Manor House Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

NEDERBURG MANOR HOUSE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#068767) (XD) - $16.95
Vague notions of curranty red and black fruit aromas from the cork. The medium intensity nose is ripe, offering aromas of cassis, black currant, dark fruit, grilled pepper and oak, with touches of mint. The medium-full bodied palate has a mix of red & black fruits, cassis, and oak notes on the flavour profile. Lively acids on the mid-palate. Tannins are supple and rounded, but gain some grip on the mid-palate. Woody notes linger on the long, dry finish. Drinking well now and should continue to drink well over the next 2-4 years. Score: 87 pts


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  • Saturday, March 24, 2018

Nederburg Manor House Shiraz 2014 (South Africa) - Wine Review

Shiraz from South Africa was most recently released into LCBO VINTAGES on and featured as part of its main theme on wines from South of the Equator. It is widely available across Ontario.

Nederburg is one of South Africa's most awarded wineries and was most recently named Platter's Winery of the Year in 2017.

The story of Nederburg begins in 1791, when Philippus Wolvaart purchased a farm that lay between the Berg and Palmiet rivers. Together with his wife, Margaretha, they nurtured the land, innovated, and paid close attention to details, all of which helped build a strong foundation on which Nederburg flourishes today.

The Manor House is but one of a few wine labels among the Nederburg portfolio, and is comprised of single varietal wines made from Nederburg's best-of-best fruit. The line is inspired by the Cape Dutch manor house built by Philippus Wolvaart, Nederburg's founder and original wine master, for himself and his wife in 1800.

Nederburg Manor House Shiraz 2014 (88 pts)

Tasting Note:

NEDERBURG MANOR HOUSE SHIRAZ 2014 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#068775) (D) - $16.95
Plummy, blackberry and blueberry aromas from the cork. This has a medium+ intensity nose featuring ripe blackberry and blueberry, along with some minty herbal and meaty notes, all wrapped in vanillan oak. It is full bodied on the palate with suave, well-integrated tannins and crunchy, juicy acids. The palate is sweet-fruited with ripe blackberry, blueberry, pepper, and sweet oak flavours. The finish length is very good. If you like 'Shiraz', you will like this. Score: 88 pts


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  • Sunday, October 15, 2017

Fleur du Cap Chardonnay 2016 (South Africa) - Wine Review

The recent parade of South African wines continues with this Chardonnay from the Western Cape.

Produced by Fleur du Cap, the grapes were sourced from vines planted in 1990 (Stellenbosch) and from 2000-2006 (Somerset West, Elgin and Robertson). Soils varied from Karoo limestone and granite in Stellenbosch, and shale soils in Elgin and Somerset West. Crops in 2016 were the smallest in half a decade, resulting in concentrated, ripe wines. I tasted the 2012 Fleur du Cap Chardonnay and am expecting a similar profile this time around as the vinification techniques used in this vintage are nearly identical to the 2012.

As part of the media package I received, this Chardonnay would pair well with Spanish-Style Brick Turkey (recipe below) that you can make during your holiday celebrations. This turkey recipe was crafted by Chef Nikko Janico and should complement the Fleur du Cap Chardonnay, which is widely available at LCBO outlets across Ontario.

Fleur du Cap Chardonnay Bergkelder Selection 2016 (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

FLEUR DU CAP CHARDONNAY BERGKELDER SELECTION 2016 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#358960) (XD) - $13.10
Screw cap. Ripe buttery aromas with baked apple and subtle hints of coconut, sweet vanillan oak, and minerality. The palate is medium+ bodied with a creamy texture and juicy acids. Flavours consist of butter, lemon citrus, pineapple, butterscotch and a touch of honeyed sweetness. There's a nice touch of smoky minerality mid-palate. Finishes with lemon citrus and mineral notes, with good length. Best with just a slight chill. Score: 87 pts

Spanish-Style Brick Turkey Recipe:

Ingredients:
  • 1 12 lb. turkey, preferably fresh
  • 2 apples, cored and quartered
  • 3 jalapeños, halved
  • 2 yellow onions, quartered
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Vegetable oil

Rub:
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1-1/2 tsp fresh oregano
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 sprig fresh sage, roughly chopped

To Prepare:
In a small bowl combine all ingredients for the rub. Mix with a fork until well incorporated. Set aside. Start by placing the turkey with the breast resting on the cutting board. Using sharp kitchen scissors, cut along both sides of the backbone to remove it. Flip the turkey over and open the cavity so both legs are spread out with the breast facing up. Press down on the breastbone to flatten. Using your fingers, gently separate the skin from the breast muscle. Using your hands, grab small portions of the butter and place between turkey skin and meat. Make sure to evenly spread throughout as this will help with consistent browning. Lather the outside skin as well. Place turkey on a wire rack over top a baking sheet and chill uncovered in the fridge for 6–12 hours.

To Cook:
Remove turkey from the fridge and let stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour. Preheat oven to 450°F. Tuck wings under the breast. Lay apples, jalapeños, yellow onion and garlic on a parchment-lined baking tray and lather with vegetable oil. Place the turkey on top of the ingredients and season the skin with salt. Place in the oven and cook for 20 minutes or until skin starts to darken. Reduce heat to 320°F and cook for another 40 minutes or until the breast reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. When finished, remove from the oven and loosely tent with tin foil. Rest at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.


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  • Friday, October 13, 2017

Goats do Roam Red 2016 (South Africa) - Wine Review

wine is the companion to the 2017 Goats do Roam White that I opened last month. I recall enjoying this wine many, many years ago when I first got into wine, but hadn't tasted it recently. The catchy name, interesting label and low price point is what drew me to this wine many years ago, and if I recall correctly, the price hasn't moved much since that time. I'm curious to see how this wine tastes today.

It is produced by the Fairview Wine Farm, a winery that proudly owns all of their vineyards, with land in Paarl, Darling, Swartland and Stellenbosch. Owner Charles Back has also always been an advocate of social development in the Cape and under Apartheid, he was one of a number of producers who campaigned for and implemented better conditions for farm workers. In 1997, he established the Fair Valley Worker’s Association, which gave his employees a chance to farm their own land.

This dry red wine from South Africa is widely available at LCBO outlets across Ontario, with the 2016 vintage on shelves already or arriving really soon.

Goats do Roam Red 2016 (87 pts)

Tasting Note:

GOATS DO ROAM RED 2016 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#718940) (XD) - $13.00
Blend of 49% Shiraz, 24% Cinsault, 12% Grenache, 11% Mourvèdre, 2% Petite Sirah, and 2% Carignan. Screw cap. This has generous aromas that are soft with plummy, peppery and red cherry notes, along with some meaty and vanillan oak nuances. It's medium-bodied on the dry palate with candied red berry fruit, chocolate oak and resinous flavours with touches of menthol. It has bright and juicy acids, some warmth mid-palate (14% abv), and soft tannins. Finish length is good with earthy-curranty notes. An easy drinking red for current consumption. Score: 87 pts


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  • Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Goats do Roam White 2017 (South Africa) - Wine Review

wine is an easy drinking white wine with a unique/fun name that you may have come across while browsing LCBO shelves as it's been available in our market for quite a few years now.

It is produced by the Fairview Wine Farm in South Africa, and while the name "Goats do Roam" is considered by some to be a play on "Côtes du Rhône" as it contains the same varietals found in Rhône whites, it is in fact (according to the website) from legend.

The story behind the name goes like this: Some errant members of Fairview’s long-established goat herd once escaped from their paddock into the Fairview vineyards after Charles Back’s young son Jason accidentally left the gate open; The little group happily roamed among the vineyards, showing rare discernment by selecting some of the ripest berries from the vines; Those berries were then used to make this white blend.

The 2017 vintage is the latest vintage and packaged in an eco-friendly, lighter-weight bottle. It is widely available (if not already, then really soon) at LCBO outlets across Ontario as it is a General List product.

Goats do Roam White 2017 (86 pts)

Tasting Note:

GOATS DO ROAM WHITE 2017 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#237313) (XD) - $11.95
Bottled under screw cap, this is a traditional Rhône blend of 49% Viognier, 28% Roussanne, and 23% Grenache Blanc. The medium intensity nose offers widely appealing ripe tropical fruit, orange zest, white peach and white floral aromas. On the medium-full bodied palate, it's got zesty acids with more ripe tropical fruit, melon, and orange peel flavours in an essentially dry profile. There's some bitterness on the mid-palate and good length on the finish. Chill well and serve with hearty fish such as Salmon. Score: 86 pts


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  • Monday, August 14, 2017

LCBO VINTAGES August 19, 2017: South of France + South Africa

LCBO Wine Picks: August 19, 2017 VINTAGES Release
New wines from the upcoming LCBO VINTAGES Release on will be on shelves across the province this and features two wine regions known for producing quality wines at very good prices. The main thematic features the wines from the South of France, while the mini-theme features wines from South Africa.

We'll begin with the South of France feature that's titled "Southern Charm". There are 11 wines listed as part of this theme and 4 are included among my top wine picks. The lone white wine is a blend of 55% Vermentino and 45% Viognier that's been partially aged in oak and comes for a region bordering Spain. The Minervois is a blend of 37% Mourvèdre, 28% Grenache, and 25% Syrah and is showing fine maturity, while the La Clape is a blend of rougly 40% Syrah, 30% Carignan, and 30% Mourvèdre. Lastly, the Saint-Chinian is a blend 65% Grenache and 35% Syrah.

Le Secret des Capitelles Saint-Chinian 2014 (88 pts)

South Africa is the mini-theme and features many fine wines on offer as 7 of the 8 wines listed are included on my list of wine recommendations. Among the red wines, there is a Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and an honest Pinotage that doesn't taste like coffee. Among the South African white wines, there is a Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and an unoaked Chardonnay. And last but not least, there is a Vintage Brut Rosé that is a blend of 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay.

Among red wines from the rest of the release, the 2008 La Granja is made with Tempranillo, as is the much younger and more modern Crianza. Both the Beni di Batasiolo and the Barolo are made Nebbiolo, while the Brunello is made with Sangiovese.

Among white wines, there's an Albariño and Falanghina, as well as a 100% Turbiana (a.k.a. Trebbiano) di Lugana from Lombardy. The Hermit Crab from Australia is a blend of 72%Viognier and 28% Marsanne. The oaked La Crema Chardonnay is actually one of the Wines of the Month and will be widely available across the province. For sweet wine lovers, your best bet is the Riesling from Ontario.

La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2015 (89 pts)2027 Cellars Wismer Vineyard Fox Croft Block Riesling 2016 (89 pts)

Enjoy my wine picks from this release! Cheers!

Red Wine:

  • LE SECRET DES CAPITELLES SAINT-CHINIAN 2014 - AP, Languedoc-Roussillon, France (#156299) (XD) - $15.95  reviewed here
  • BENI DI BATASIOLO NEBBIOLO 2015 - DOC Langhe, Italy (#908079) (XD) - $16.95
  • CHÂTEAU DE SÉRAME MINERVOIS 2010 - AC, Languedoc-Roussillon, France (#480889) (XD) - $16.95
  • GÉRARD BERTRAND GRAND TERROIR LA CLAPE SYRAH / CARIGNAN / MOURVÈDRE 2014 - AP Coteaux du Languedoc La Clape, Languedoc, France (#370262) (XD) - $18.95
  • PEREZ CRUZ LIMITED EDITION CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015 - Maipo Andes, Chile (#431015) (XD) - $19.95  reviewed here
  • RUSTENBERG SHIRAZ 2014 - WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#399246) (XD) - $19.95
  • ALEJANDRO FERNÁNDEZ DEHESA LA GRANJA 2008 - Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y León, Spain (#192476) (XD) - $20.95
  • PALACIOS REMONDO LA MONTESA CRIANZA 2014 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#674572) (XD) - $24.95
  • ERNIE ELS CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014 - WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#278358) (XD) - $24.95
  • SOUTHERN RIGHT PINOTAGE 2015 - WO Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, Walker Bay, South Africa (#486167) (XD) - $26.95
  • PODERI COLLA DARDI LE ROSE BUSSIA BAROLO 2011 - DOCG, Piedmont, Italy (#596890) (XD) - $54.95
  • IL GRAPPOLO BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO 2010 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#452151) (XD) - $54.95
Perez Cruz Limited Edition Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 (89 pts)

White Wine:

  • DE WETSHOF LIMESTONE HILL UNWOODED CHARDONNAY 2016 - WO Robertson, South Africa (#419622) (XD) - $16.95
  • TERRE STREGATE SVELATO FALANGHINA DEL SANNIO 2015 - DOP, Campania, Italy (#486076) (XD) - $17.95
  • D’ARENBERG THE HERMIT CRAB VIOGNIER/MARSANNE 2016 - McLaren Vale, South Australia (#662775) (XD) - $17.95
  • PACO & LOLA ALBARIÑO 2016 - DO Rías Baixas, Spain (#350041) (XD) - $18.95
  • LES NEIGES DE L’AGLY VERMENTINO/VIOGNIER 2013 - IGP Côtes Catalanes, Languedoc-Roussillon, France (#512566) (XD) - $19.95
  • SOUTHERN RIGHT SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016 - Walker Bay, WO Western Cape, South Africa (#512277) (XD) - $21.95
  • RAATS ORIGINAL CHENIN BLANC 2016 - Unwooded, WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#651497) (XD) - $21.95
  • 2027 CELLARS WISMER VINEYARD FOX CROFT BLOCK RIESLING 2016 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#225490) (M) - $22.95  FSE  reviewed here
  • TENUTA ROVEGLIA VIGNE DI CATULLO LUGANA RISERVA 2013 - DOC, Lombardy, Italy (#437004) (D) - $24.95
  • LA CREMA SONOMA COAST CHARDONNAY 2015 - Sonoma Coast, California, USA (#962886) (XD) - $29.95  reviewed here

Sparkling Wine:

  • GRAHAM BECK BRUT ROSÉ 2011 - Disgorged March 2017, Méthode Cap Classique, WO Western Cape, South Africa (#004085) (XD) - $21.95
  • DOM PÉRIGNON VINTAGE BRUT ROSÉ CHAMPAGNE 2004 - AC, Champagne, France (#091777) (XD) - $337.95  FSE

Fortified:

  • KOURTAKI MUSCAT OF SAMOS - PDO Samos, Greece (#938407) (S) - $15.95


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