Showing posts with label washington. Show all posts
Showing posts with label washington. Show all posts

Monday, November 19, 2018

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  • Monday, November 19, 2018

Wine Picks LCBO VINTAGES Release Nov. 24, 2018: France + Washington



LCBO Wine Picks: November 24, 2018 VINTAGES Release
The LCBO VINTAGES Release is the second last VINTAGES Release of the year and features French wines in its main theme, while the mini-theme features wines from Washington. All of these wines will be on LCBO VINTAGES shelves across Ontario this .

We'll begin with the main theme that is titled "French Treasures" and lists 14 wines, but only 3 are included among my top wine picks. First up are a pair of whites - a Sauvignon Blanc from Sancerre, and a Chardonnay from Pouilly-Fuissé in Burgundy. The third wine is a Champagne made with 40% Chardonnay, 50% Pinot Noir, and 10% Pinot Meunier. Surprisingly, no reds are included among my wine recommendations from this feature. However, not to worry, as there are some other delightful French red wines to choose from.

The mini-theme features 7 wines from Washington, of which only the Hedges Family Estate Red made my list of wine picks. This red wine hails from the highly-acclaimed Red Mountain AVA and is a blend of 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 4% Malbec, 2% Syrah, and 2% Petit Verdot.

There are lots of lovely red wines to choose from in this Release. We'll begin in France, where the M. Chapoutier wine is a blend of Syrah, Grenache and Carignan, while the Chusclan from the excellent 2015 Rhône vintage is a blend of 60% Grenache, 10% Syrah, and 10% Mourvedre. From Italy, the Losi Querciavalle Chianti Classico is a lovely blend of 90% Sangiovese and 10% Canaiolo, while the Gran Selezione is a blend of 80% Sangiovese, 13% Merlot, and 7% Malvasia Nera. Staying in Italy, the wine from Ornellaia is a blend of Merlot, Sangiovese, and Cabernet Sauvignon. From Ontario, the Hidden Bench red reveals a blend of 36% Cabernet Franc, 34% Merlot, and 24% Malbec, while the Stratus Red is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Malbec.

Stratus Red 2015 (92 pts)

Losi Querciavalle Chianti Classico 2012 (89 pts)Le Volte dell’Ornellaia 2016 (89 pts)

Among my white wine picks, the Bordeaux white is a blend of 57% Sauvignon Blanc and 43% Sémillon, while the white from Veneto is made with 100% Trebbiano di Lugana. The only white with any sweetness is the Organic Riesling from Niagara.

Lastly, from Ontario, the Sparkling Wine is made with Chardonnay in the traditional method, while the Fortified wine is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet, and a hint of Shiraz.

Enjoy my wine recommendations from this Release! Salud!

Red Wine:

  • M. CHAPOUTIER LES VIGNES DE BILA-HAUT CÔTES DU ROUSSILLON-VILLAGES 2017 - AC, Midi, France (#168716) (XD) - $15.95
  • VIÑA TARAPACÁ GRAN RESERVA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016 - DO Maipo Valley, Chile (#018721) (XD) - $17.95  88 pts  wine review
  • CHÂTEAU SIGNAC CHUSCLAN 2015 - AP Côtes du Rhône-Villages, France (#537878) (XD) - $18.95
  • TERRAZAS DE LOS ANDES RESERVA MALBEC 2015 - Mendoza, Argentina (#029280) (XD) - $19.95
  • LOSI QUERCIAVALLE CHIANTI CLASSICO 2012 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#515478) (XD) - $19.95  89 pts  wine review
Viña Tarapacá Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 (88 pts)Lakeview Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 (89 pts)

  • WYNNS COONAWARRA ESTATE SHIRAZ 2016 - Coonawarra, South Australia (#433060) (XD) - $23.95
  • LE VOLTE DELL’ORNELLAIA 2016 - IGT Toscana, Italy (#964221) (XD) - $29.95  89 pts  wine review
  • LAKEVIEW CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#012617) (D) - $29.95  89 pts  wine review
  • SONVIDA RESERVE MALBEC 2015 - Paraje Altmira, Mendoza, Argentina (#458240) (XD) - $29.95
  • HEDGES FAMILY ESTATE RED 2013 - Red Mountain, Columbia Valley, Washington, USA (#001594) (XD) - $38.95

  • HIDDEN BENCH TERROIR CACHÉ 2015 - Unfiltered, VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#505610) (XD) - $44.95
  • STRATUS RED 2015 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada (#131037) (XD) - $48.20
  • DOMAINE DROUHIN OREGON PINOT NOIR 2015 - Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA (#961284) (XD) - $49.95  92 pts  wine review
  • CASTELLO DI AMA SAN LORENZO GRAN SELEZIONE CHIANTI CLASSICO 2014 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#418897) (XD) - $54.95
  • PECCHENINO SAN GIUSEPPE BAROLO 2013 - DOCG, Piedmont, Italy (#181396) (XD) - $59.95
Domaine Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir 2015 (92 pts)

White Wine:

  • SANTA CAROLINA GRAN RESERVA CHARDONNAY 2016 - DO Limarí Valley, Chile (#928580) (XD) - $16.95  88 pts  wine review
  • CHÂTEAU BONNET 2016 - AC Entre-Deux-Mers, Bordeaux, France (#568535) (XD) - $16.95
  • ZENATO SAN BENEDETTO LUGANA 2017 - DOC, Veneto, Italy (#707158) (D) - $18.95
  • CAVE SPRING ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2016 - Cave Spring Vineyard, VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#256552) (XD) - $19.95  88 pts  wine review
  • TIEFENBRUNNER PINOT GRIGIO 2017 - IGT Vigneti delle Dolomiti, Alto Adige, Italy (#474742) (XD) - $19.95
  • SOUTHBROOK TRIOMPHE ORGANIC RIESLING 2016 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#581603) (D) - $22.95
  • DOG POINT SAUVIGNON BLANC 2017 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#677450) (XD) - $26.95
  • SOUMAH CHARDONNAY 2017 - Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia (#609305) (XD) - $27.95
  • CHÂTEAU DE FONTAINE-AUDON SANCERRE 2016 - AP, Loire, France (#745893) (XD) - $32.95
  • J.J. VINCENT MARIE-ANTOINETTE POUILLY-FUISSÉ 2016 - AC, Burgundy, France (#525113) (XD) - $37.95
Santa Carolina Gran Reserva Chardonnay 2016 (88 pts)Cave Spring Estate Chardonnay 2016 (88 pts)

Sparkling Wine:

  • FLAT ROCK RIDDLED SPARKLING 2011 - Traditional method, VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#383315) (D) - $34.95
  • BOIZEL GRAND VINTAGE BRUT CHAMPAGNE 2007 - AC, France (#484071) (XD) - $94.95

Fortified:

  • UNION FORTÉ 2012 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#361758) (S) (500 mL) - $17.95


Monday, April 23, 2018

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  • Monday, April 23, 2018

VINTAGES Release April 28, 2018: Pacific Northwest + Germany

LCBO Wine Picks: April 28, 2018 VINTAGES Release
The upcoming LCBO VINTAGES Release features as the main theme the cool-climate regions of the Pacific Northwest, which includes British Columbia, Oregon, and Washington. The mini-theme features the wines from Germany. All of these wines will be on LCBO VINTAGES shelves across Ontario this .

We'll begin with the main theme that features the wines from British Columbia, Oregon, and Washington, commonly grouped together as the Pacific Northwest. None of the five wines listed from Oregon and eight wines listed from Washington are included among my wine picks. British Columbia seemed to get shortchanged (again?) with just three wines listed. However, the Osoyoos Larose Le Grand Vin is the only wine among my top wine recommendations from the Pacific Northwest; it is always a classy wine and for the 2014 vintage is a blend of 68% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot and 5% Malbec.

The mini-feature on German wines is also rather weak, with six wines listed and just one included among my top wine picks. My lone pick from the German feature is a dry Riesling that's also known as Riesling Trocken. As part of the Flagship Store Exclusives (FSE) at the back of the magazine is a very sweet Riesling Spätlese and is one of the top wines of the Release.

From my top red wine picks, the Saint-Roch is a blend of approximately equal parts Syrah and Grenache, while the Vacqueyras is an organic wine from the excellent 2015 vintage made with Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre. The Douro red wine from Portugal is made with Touriga Nacional. Lastly, the Rioja is a blend of 89% Tempranillo, 9% Graciano, and 2% Garnacha.

Roda Reserva 2012 (91 pts)

Among my white wine picks, the Soave wine is made with 100% Garganega from vines that range between 10-50 years old. The Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand is an organic wine. For sweet wine lovers, in order of least sweet to most sweet, there is the Hidden Bench Riesling (organic), Megalomaniac Riesling, and the Gewürztraminer, as well as the aforementioned Riesling Spätlese. For fans looking for lusciously sweet wines, the Tawse Chardonnay Icewine is also worth seeking.

Hidden Bench Estate Riesling 2016 (90+ pts)Tawse Chardonnay Icewine 2013 (92 pts)

As the weather gets warmer, Rosé wines return with more frequency at the LCBO. One of the first to arrive is the Miraval Rosé, with vines coming from an average of 1,200 feet above sea level and made using a blend of Cinsault, Grenache, Syrah, and Rolle. This wine is also featured as the Wine of the Month and will be available at just about every LCBO outlet.

Enjoy my wine recommendations from this Release! Cheers!

Red Wine:

  • SAINT-ROCH VIEILLES VIGNES SYRAH/GRENACHE 2015 - AP Côtes du Roussillon, France (#195107) (XD) - $16.95
  • MORANDÉ GRAN RESERVA CARMENÈRE 2014 - Single vineyard, Maipo Valley, Chile (#371112) (XD) - $17.00
  • QUINTA DAS CARVALHAS TINTO 2013 - DOC Douro, Portugal (#523647) (XD) - $17.95
  • BISQUERTT ECOS DE RULO CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015 - Single vineyard, Colchagua Valley, Chile (#546515) (XD) - $18.95
  • ROCKCLIFFE THIRD REEF SHIRAZ 2015 - Great Southern, Western Australia (#453209) (XD) - $19.95
  • CASAR DE BURBIA MENCÍA 2014 - DO Bierzo, Spain (#392530) (XD) - $19.95
  • TENUTA DI RENIERI CHIANTI CLASSICO 2013 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#540849) (XD) - $22.95  89 pts  wine review
  • DOMAINE DE L’OISELET VACQUEYRAS 2015 - AP, Rhône, France (#537951) (XD) - $27.95
  • FLAT ROCK GRAVITY PINOT NOIR 2014 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#001560) (XD) - $34.95
  • KENWOOD JACK LONDON VINEYARD CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014 - Sonoma Mountain, Sonoma County, California, USA (#944843) (XD) - $39.95
  • OSOYOOS LAROSE LE GRAND VIN 2014 - VQA Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada (#626325) (XD) - $47.95
  • RODA RESERVA 2012 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#664557) (XD) - $52.95  FSE  91 pts  wine review
  • BREZZA SARMASSA BAROLO 2013 - DOCG, Piedmont, Italy (#999730) (D) - $87.95  FSE
Tenuta di Renieri Chianti Classico 2013 (89 pts)

White Wine:

  • INDOMITA GRAN RESERVA SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016 - Casablanca Valley, Chile (#544213) (XD) - $16.95
  • MEGALOMANIAC NARCISSIST RIESLING 2017 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#067587) (D) - $18.95
  • FLAT ROCK CHARDONNAY 2016 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#286278) (D) - $19.95  88+ pts  wine review
  • WEINGUT TINA PFAFFMANN T NO. 9 RIESLING TROCKEN 2016 - Qualitätswein, Pfalz, Germany (#549774) (XD) - $19.95
  • MOMO SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#009167) (XD) - $19.95
  • HIDDEN BENCH ESTATE RIESLING 2016 - VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#183491) (D) - $23.95  90+ pts  wine review
  • PIERRE SPARR MAMBOURG GEWURZTRAMINER 2015 - AC Alsace Grand Cru, France (#915157) (M) - $26.95
  • CAVE SPRING CSV CHARDONNAY 2015 - VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#529941) (XD) - $29.95  91 pts  wine review
  • PIEROPAN LA ROCCA SOAVE CLASSICO 2015 - DOC, Veneto, Italy (#092437) (D) - $39.95
  • BRAUNEBERGER JUFFER-SONNENUHR RIESLING SPÄTLESE 2014 - Prädikatswein, Mosel, Germany (#298182) (S) - $40.95  FSE
  • FESS PARKER BIEN NACIDO VINEYARD CHARDONNAY 2015 - Santa Maria Valley, Santa Barbara County, California, USA (#547158) (XD) - $44.95
Cave Spring CSV Chardonnay 2015 (91 pts)Flat Rock Chardonnay 2016 (88+ pts)

Rosé Wine:

  • MIRAVAL ROSÉ 2017 - AP Côtes de Provence, France (#342584) (XD) - $23.95

Dessert Wine:

  • TAWSE CHARDONNAY ICEWINE 2013 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#443739) (200 mL) (S) - $35.95  92 pts  wine review


Monday, April 24, 2017

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  • Monday, April 24, 2017

VINTAGES Release April 29, 2017: Oregon + Washington + Germany + Rosé

LCBO Wine Picks from April 29, 2017 VINTAGES Release
The upcoming LCBO VINTAGES Release on will be on shelves this coming and features the wines from Washington and Oregon as its main theme. The mini-themes highlight the wines from Germany, as well as a fresh crop of Rosé wines for Spring sipping.

We'll begin with the feature on wines from the U.S. Pacific Northwest States of Oregon and Washington. For some odd reason, only 5 wines were listed from Oregon, whereas Washington received double the amount with 10 wines listed. From Oregon, only the (dry) Pinot Gris from Willamette Valley made my list of wine picks - I suppose all the great Willamette Pinot Noir is being saved for the Fall/Holiday Releases. From Washington, there is an aromatic Viognier and an off-dry (i.e. slightly sweet) Riesling, both from Columbia Valley.

Elk Cove Pinot Gris 2015 (89 pts)Reichsgraf Von Kesselstatt Kaseler Nies’chen Riesling Kabinett 2014 (91 pts)

The mini-theme from Germany is also rather small, listing just 4 wines to showcase the different styles of wines that are produced by this country. The main attraction though is the varied styles of Riesling, ranging from dry to sweet. Two of the three Rieslings are listed among my wine recommendations, and both on the sweeter side - a Riesling Kabinett and even more sweeter Riesling Spätlese.

The last thematic features 11 Rosé wines, and 2 are included among my wine picks. Both of these Rosés are dry (i.e. not sweet) in style and are made with Pinot Noir.

Jean-Max Roger La Grange Dimière Sancerre Rosé 2016 (90 pts)Marqués de Cáceres Gran Reserva 2009 (90 pts)

From the rest of the release, in red wines, the Quinta de Cabriz is a blend of 40% Alfrocheiro, 40% Tinta Roriz, and 20% Touriga Nacional, while the Spanish Rioja is a blend of 85% Tempranillo, 10% Garnacha and 5% Graciano. From France, the Chinon is 100% Cabernet Franc, while the Cave de Roquebrun is a blend of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre. For 2013, The Hess Colletion's 19 Block Mountain Cuvee is a Malbec-heavy (61%) blend that also contains 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot/Syrah.

In whites wines, the Burgundy is Chardonnay, while the Sancerre is a Sauvignon Blanc.

Enjoy my top wine picks from this release! Cheers!

Red Wine:

  • QUINTA DE CABRIZ COLHEITA SELECCIONADA 2014 - DOC Dão, Portugal (#247973) (D) - $13.95
  • TOURNON MATHILDA CHAPOUTIER SHIRAZ 2013 - Victoria, Australia (#336966) (XD) - $17.95
  • CAVE DE ROQUEBRUN LA GRANGE DES COMBES SAINT-CHINIAN-ROQUEBRUN 2014 - AC, Midi, France (#155804) (D) - $18.95
  • SERGE & BRUNO SOURDAIS LE LOGIS DE LA BOUCHARDIÈRE CHINON 2015 - AC, Loire, France (#490375) (XD) - $18.95
  • PENLEY ESTATE HYLAND SHIRAZ 2014 - Coonawarra, South Australia (#409078) (XD) - $18.95
  • ZUCCARDI APELACIÓN VISTA FLORES MALBEC 2014 - Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina (#482760) (XD) - $24.95
  • MITCHELL SEVENHILL VINEYARD CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2008 - Clare Valley, South Australia (#673129) (XD) - $24.95
  • MARQUÉS DE CÁCERES GRAN RESERVA 2009 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#976670) (XD) - $29.95  reviewed here
  • BURROWING OWL SYRAH 2014 - VQA Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada (#073072) (XD) - $40.95
  • THE HESS COLLECTION 19 BLOCK MOUNTAIN CUVÉE 2013 - Mount Veeder/Napa Valley, California, USA (#018879) (XD) - $49.95
  • BUON TEMPO ALTA BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO 2010 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#483784) (XD) - $69.95  FSE

White Wine:

  • HOGUE RIESLING 2014 - Columbia Valley, Washington, USA (#363291) (D) - $15.95
  • ERNIE ELS SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#455907) (XD) - $16.95
  • FLAT ROCK CHARDONNAY 2015 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada (#286278) (D) - $18.95  reviewed here
  • POWERS COLUMBIA VALLEY VIOGNIER 2015 - Talcott Vineyard, Wahluke Slope, Columbia Valley, Washington, USA (#486993) (XD) - $18.95
  • MOMO PINOT GRIS 2015 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#163535) (D) - $19.95
  • ELK COVE PINOT GRIS 2015 - Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA (#955906) (XD) - $24.95  reviewed here
  • REICHSGRAF VON KESSELSTATT KASELER NIES’CHEN RIESLING KABINETT 2014 - VDP Grosse Lage, Pradikätswein, Mosel, Germany (#940809) (MS) - $24.95  reviewed here
  • DOMAINE DE LA DENANTE LES MAILLETTES SAINT-VÉRAN 2014 - AC, Burgundy, France (#491738) (XD) - $26.95
  • PASCAL JOLIVET SANCERRE 2016 - AC, Loire, France (#264945) (XD) - $29.95
  • SCHLOSS VOLLRADS RIESLING SPÄTLESE 2014 - Pradikätswein, Rheingau, Germany (#101972) (M) - $34.95

Rosé Wine:

  • THE KING’S DESIRE PINOT ROSÉ 2016 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#492926) (XD) - $19.95
  • JEAN-MAX ROGER LA GRANGE DIMIÈRE SANCERRE ROSÉ 2016 - AC, Loire, France (#490813) (XD) - $25.95  reviewed here


Monday, April 25, 2016

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  • Monday, April 25, 2016

April 30 VINTAGES Release: Pacific Northwest + Aussie Whites + Rosé

LCBO Wine Picks from April 30, 2016 VINTAGES Release
The upcoming LCBO VINTAGES Release will be on shelves this coming Saturday and features wines from the Pacific Northwest as its main thematic - although noticeably absent this time around is the omission of British Columbia. There are two mini-themes in this release - great Australian white wines and some very fine rosés - both arriving just in time for warmer weather.

From the major theme of the release, the 8 wines from Washington are mostly a disappointment with only a dry Riesling making my list of wine picks. Meanwhile, the Oregon portion of the Pacific Northwest feature was only 6 wines, but 2 (of 4) Oregon Pinot Noirs are included among my wine picks. The Pinot from Two Messengers is a very big Pinot, but will also likely arrive late to shelves.

The first mini-theme is on great Australian whites and highlights 6 wines for your pleasure this Spring. Of the 6 wines, fully half are included among my wine recommendations. First up is an Organic Viognier from Australia's oldest family-owned winery. There's also an off-dry (i.e. slightly sweet) Riesling, and from Western Australia an off-dry blend of 60% Sauvignon Blanc and 40% Semillon.

A rather large selection of 12 rosé wines yielded 4 fine wines, all of which are blends from the 2015 vintage from France. From Tavel, Rhône, is the Domaine Maby rosé that is a blend of 74% Grenache Noir with the balance made up of at least 5 other grapes, while the Gabriel Meffre rose is primarily Grenache with Syrah and Cinsault added in support. Lastly, the Château La Tour de l’Évêque is a blend primarily of Cinsault (40%), Grenache (35%), and Syrah (12%), with the balance made up of 5 other varietals.

In red wines from the rest of the release, the Bordeaux red is a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, while the Wildass Red is a Meritage type of blend. In white wines, the Spanish white is mostly Albariño.

Enjoy my wine picks for this week. Cheers!

Rendola Brunello di Montalcino 2004 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (91 pts)Pascual Toso Barrancas Vineyards Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 - Mendoza, Argentina (90 pts)

Red Wine:

  • CHÂTEAU DES DEMOISELLES 2011 - AC Côtes de Bordeaux – Castillon, France (#348755) (XD) - $17.95
  • TABALÍ RESERVA ESPECIAL SYRAH 2012 - Limarí Valley, Chile (#213538) (XD) - $17.95
  • WILDASS RED 2012 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada (#086363) (XD) - $19.95
  • ERRAZURIZ ACONCAGUA ALTO CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2013 - Aconcagua Valley, Chile (#203364) (XD) - $19.95
  • PASCUAL TOSO BARRANCAS VINEYARDS RESERVA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2013 - Mendoza, Argentina (#083337) (XD) - $19.95  reviewed here
  • SOLÉNA DOMAINE DANIELLE LAURENT PINOT NOIR 2012 - Yamhill-Carlton, Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA (#446112) (XD) - $35.95
  • RENDOLA BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO 2004 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#181412) (XD) - $39.95  reviewed here
  • TRAPICHE TERROIR SERIES FINCA AMBROSIA SINGLE VINEYARD MALBEC 2010 - Gualtallary, Mendoza, Argentina (#402941) (XD) - $39.95  FSE
  • MAISON L’ENVOYÉ TWO MESSENGERS PINOT NOIR 2013 - Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA (#453357) (XD) - $41.95  late arrival
  • SORDO GIOVANNI ROCCHE DI CASTIGLIONE RISERVA BAROLO 2008 - DOCG, Piedmont, Italy (#442004) (XD) - $49.95
  • FERRARI-CARANO RESERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2010 - Mountain Vineyards, Alexander Valley, Sonoma, California, USA (#450429) (XD) - $74.95

White Wine:

  • FEATHERSTONE BLACK SHEEP RIESLING 2015 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#080234) (M) - $16.95
  • CHÂTEAU DE TRÉVIAC 2014 - AP Corbières, Midi, France (#438747) (XD) - $17.95
  • YALUMBA ORGANIC VIOGNIER 2015 - South Australia (#288217) (XD) - $17.95
  • SKUTTLEBUTT SAUVIGNON BLANC/SEMILLON 2014 - Margaret River, Western Australia (#047621) (D) - $18.95
  • JOEL GOTT RIESLING 2012 - Columbia Valley, Washington, USA (#443143) (XD) - $19.95
  • PIKES TRADITIONALE RIESLING 2015 - Clare Valley, South Australia (#066894) (D) - $23.95
  • QUINTA DE COUSELO O ROSAL 2014 - DO Rías Baixas, Spain (#440362) (XD) - $23.95
  • VINCENT MOTHE CHABLIS 2014 - AC, Burgundy, France (#390468) (XD) - $26.95
  • NORMAN HARDIE UNFILTERED CHARDONNAY 2014 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#184432) (XD) - $39.00

Rosé Wine:

  • DOMAINE MABY LA FORCADIÈRE TAVEL ROSÉ 2015 - AC, Rhône, France (#701318) (XD) - $18.95
  • GABRIEL MEFFRE SAINT FERRÉOL TAVEL ROSÉ 2015 - AP, Rhône, France (#450866) (D) - $19.95
  • CHÂTEAU LA TOUR DE L’ÉVÊQUE ROSÉ 2015 - Harvested by hand, AC Côtes de Provence, France (#319392) (XD) - $19.95
  • SAINT AIX ROSÉ 2015 - AP Coteaux d’Aix en Provence, France (#451906) (XD) - $22.95

Dessert Wine:

  • PUKLUS PINCÉSZET SZAMORODNI SWEET TOKAJI 2009 - Hungary (#179374) (S) (500 mL) - $18.95
  • HENRY OF PELHAM CABERNET ICEWINE 2013 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#672402) (S) (200 mL) - $39.95

Cider:

  • DOMAINE FÉLIBRE GIVRÉ ICE CIDER 2014 - Product of Quebec, Canada (#393611) (S) (375 mL) - $21.95  reviewed here
Domaine Félibre Givré Ice Cider 2014 - Product of Quebec, Canada


Wednesday, August 5, 2015

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  • Wednesday, August 5, 2015

LCBO VINTAGES Release August 8: Oregon + Washington + B.C. + Loire

LCBO Wine Picks from August 8, 2015 VINTAGES Release
The LCBO VINTAGES Release on will be on shelves this Saturday and highlights 23 wines from The Great Northwest, while the mini-feature displays 7 Summery wines from Loire Valley.

The Great Northwest thematic highlights wines from Oregon and Washington in the U.S.A., and wines from Canada's British Columbia. Unfortunately, only one wine - a Cabernet Sauvignon from B.C. - is among my wine picks. There's also a Pinot Noir from Oregon found in the back of the magazine, but it's a Flagship Store Exclusive (FSE) and only available at select VINTAGES outlets. Disappointed with the lack of selection from those three wine regions again. Was there nothing else that could have been brought in?

Furthermore, just one wine from Loire made my list of wine picks - a Pouilly-Fumé that is 100% Sauvignon Blanc.

From the rest of the release, there is a nice Rasteau from Rhône that's blended using 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, and an 80/20 Syrah-Grenache blend from Midi. Also from France is a 70/20/10 blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon & Petit Verdot from Bordeaux, and a Pinot Noir from Burgundy. The majority of dry table red wines from Portugal are blends, including the version from Ramos Pinto in this release that is primarily Touriga Nacional (43%) and Touriga Franca (37%), and the final 20% is a blend of 6 other local Douro grape varieties.

In white wines, the Domaine Lafage is an interesting blend of 50% Grenache Blanc, 30% Chardonnay, and 20% Marsanne. Lastly, the Grecomusc' is the local name of the Rovello grape which offers alluring floral aromas in a dry style of wine.

For sweet wine lovers, you'll want to pick up either the Pinot Gris from Alsace or the much sweeter Riesling from Germany.

Enjoy my LCBO wine recommendations from this release. Cheers!

Red Wine:

  • ESPELT VITICULTORS OLD VINES GARNACHA 2013 - DO Empordà, Spain (#422469) (XD) - $14.95
  • ORTAS CAVE DE RASTEAU LA DOMELIÈRE RASTEAU 2013 - AC, Rhône, France (#222927) (XD) - $15.95
  • CHÂTEAU DE TREVIAC 2012 - AP Corbières, Midi, France (#670505) (XD) - $16.95  reviewed here
  • RAMOS PINTO DUAS QUINTAS 2013 - DOC Douro, Portugal (#359893) (D) - $17.95
  • CHÂTEAU PLAISANCE 2009 - AC Bordeaux Supérieur, France (#404285) (XD) - $19.95
  • MISSION HILL RESERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2012 - BC VQA Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada (#553321) (XD) - $26.95  reviewed here
  • VICCHIOMAGGIO AGOSTINO PETRI RISERVA CHIANTI CLASSICO 2010 - DOCG, Tuscany, Italy (#993360) (XD) - $29.95
  • PAOLO CONTERNO RIVA DEL BRIC BAROLO 2010 - Unfiltered, DOCG, Piedmont, Italy (#172783) (XD) - $39.95
  • DOMAINE DROUHIN PINOT NOIR 2012 - Dundee Hills, Oregon, USA (#961284) (XD) - $49.95  FSE
  • DOMAINE PAVELOT SAVIGNY-LES-BEAUNE AUX GRAVAINS 1ER CRU 2012 - AC, Burgundy, France (#206136) (XD) - $53.95  FSE
Château de Treviac 2012 - AP Corbières, Midi, France (89 pts)

White Wine:

  • VICENTE GANDÍA NEBLA VERDEJO 2014 - DO Rueda, Spain (#422048) (XD) - $14.95
  • DOMAINE LAFAGE CÔTÉ EST 2013 - IGP Côtes Catalanes, Midi, France (#179838) (XD) - $14.95
  • YALUMBA THE Y SERIES VIOGNIER 2014 - South Australia (#624502) (D) - $16.95
  • WEGELER SWEET RIESLING 2012 - VDP Gutswein, Mosel, Germany (#409672) (MS) - $19.95  reviewed here
  • CHÂTEAU FAVRAY POUILLY-FUMÉ 2014 - AC, Loire, France (#323642) (XD) - $21.95
  • RIEFLÉ STEINERT PINOT GRIS 2010 - AC Alsace Grand Cru, France (#408229) (M) - $24.95
  • CONTRADE DI TAURASI GRECOMUSC’ 2012 - IGT Campania Bianco, Italy (#418715) (XD) - $32.95
Wegeler Sweet Riesling 2012 - VDP Gutswein, Mosel, Germany (89 pts)

Rosé Wine:

  • CHÂTEAU VAL JOANIS TRADITION ROSÉ 2014 - AP Luberon, Rhône, France (#707281) (XD) - $15.95

Sparkling Wine:

  • PIPER-HEIDSIECK BRUT CHAMPAGNE 2006 - AC, France (#409326) (XD) - $79.95


The rest of the wines from the August 8 VINTAGES release can be found here.


Monday, October 21, 2013

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  • Monday, October 21, 2013

Oct. 26 Wine Picks: 2010 Bordeaux + Oregon + Washington

LCBO Vintages Recommendations from October 26, 2013 Release
The next LCBO Vintages release will be on shelves across Ontario on . The main focus of this release is the much heralded 2010 Bordeaux vintage - often described as the "vintage of the decade" and "one of the best ever".

However, looking at the majority of 17 wines that are featured, one might wonder what is so special about the 2010 vintage. Well, to sum it up - the 2010s are robust and very age-worthy, and should be aged a number of years before they will reach their prime drinking window. The extreme weather conditions, including dehydration, from El Niño forced winemakers to wait to pick their grapes, which resulted in slightly shrivelled (raisined) grapes, which meant less juice and more skin (i.e. tannin) per grape. The fruit is strong enough to hold up to the tannins. The cooler-than-normal Autumn temperatures also helped produce wines with higher acidity and alcohols. Personally, I think I prefer the 2009s over the 2010s.

Just one of the 2010 Bordeauxs made my list of wine picks - the Chateau de Maison Neuve that is 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon that you may want to cellar for a few years before imbibing. Suffice it to say, the selection featured in this release doesn't provide a full spectrum of the 2010s, as it's missing many of the higher-end wines that I would have liked to see. The LCBO's minimum case requirement and cost may have been a barrier.

The secondary feature in this release is a small one (just 6 wines) and highlights the Western USA states of Oregon and Washington. I'm a big fan of wines from both of these states, but just one of the 6 wines intrigued me - the Elk Cove Pinot Gris. It's made in a extra dry style and has a slight spritz. In Oregon, Pinot Noir is the most widely planted varietal, while Pinot Gris is second most.

From the rest of the release, there are a couple of wines from the Iberian Peninsula worth your consideration. Age for a couple of years the Portuguese Quinta do Portal, which is made using 50% Touriga Nacional, 40% Touriga Roriz, and 10% Touriga Franca. From Spain is the Coto de Imaz, which is 100% Tempranillo and can be enjoyed now or in a few years. And finally, the Vacqueyras from Rhone is a GSM-blend (70% Grenache, 15% Syrah and 15% Mourvedre) that can be enjoyed now or in 4 years.

Enjoy my Vintages wine recommendations for this week. Cheers!


Red Wine:
  • ZOLO RESERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2010 - Mendoza, Argentina (#054098) (XD) - $17.00
  • SMALL GULLY MR BLACK’S LITTLE BOOK SHIRAZ 2010 - Barossa Valley, South Australia (#287979) (XD) - $17.95
  • VINOS SIN LEY “M” OLD VINE MONASTRELL 2011 - DO Yecla, Spain (#344226) (D) - $18.95
  • CHÂTEAU DE MAISON NEUVE 2010 - AC Montagne Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux, France (#351965) (D) - $19.95
  • JOURNEY’S END SHIRAZ 2007 - Single Vineyard, WO Stellenbosch, South Africa (#337642) (XD) - $19.95
  • COTO DE IMAZ RESERVA 2005 - DOCa Rioja, Spain (#023762) (XD) - $20.95
  • CHÂTEAU DES ROQUES VACQUEYRAS 2009 - AC, Rhône, France (#352039) (XD) - $21.95
  • QUINTA DO PORTAL RESERVA 2009 - DOC Douro, Portugal (#280578) (XD) - $21.95
  • REDEMPTION ZIN ZINFANDEL 2009 - Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, USA (#224147) (XD) - $26.95
  • STAGS’ LEAP WINERY MERLOT 2010 - Napa Valley, California, USA (#655399) (XD) - $39.95

White Wine:
  • QU CHARDONNAY 2011 - Curicó, Chile (#357392) (XD) - $15.95
  • MOMO SAUVIGNON BLANC 2012 - Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand (#009167) (XD) - $17.95
  • FIELDING ESTATE RIESLING 2012 - Estate Bottled, VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#251439) (M) - $18.95
  • BOLLIG-LEHNERT DHRONER HOFBERGER RIESLING SPÄTLESE 2011 - Prädikatswein, Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany (#339945) (XD) - $21.95  reviewed here
  • D’ARENBERG THE MONEY SPIDER ROUSSANNE 2011 - McLaren Vale, South Australia (#656710) (XD) - $21.95
  • WILLIAM FÈVRE CHABLIS 2011 - AC, Burgundy, France (#124578) (XD) - $24.95
  • ELK COVE PINOT GRIS 2012 - Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA (#955906) (XD) - $24.95

Dessert Wine:
  • KONZELMANN VIDAL ICEWINE 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#167866) (S) (200 mL) - $25.10


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


Thursday, August 16, 2012

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  • Thursday, August 16, 2012

Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 (Washington) - Wine Review

Purchased this red wine earlier this year from the March 17 Vintages release and was re-released in the upcoming August 18 release as part of the mini-feature on wines from the Pacific Northwest. It's a beauty!

COLUMBIA CREST H3 CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2009 - Horse Heaven Hills, Washington, USA (#210047) (XD) - $19.95

Bottle photo of 2009 Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasting Note:
Currants, cassis, cedar and mint aromas with some earthy & herbal aromas at the tail end. Currant and dark fruits lead to dark chocolate and coffee on the palate. Good acidity with well-integrated tannins, full-bodied. Quite smooth. Oven-roasted chicken would go very nicely with this. Recommended.


Thursday, July 21, 2011

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  • Thursday, July 21, 2011

2009 Château Ste. Michelle Chardonnay (Washington) - Wine Review

I've always been a fan of wines from Washington State. It's a shame we don't get many more offerings from Washington here in Ontario. This fine wine was purchased last month.

CHATEAU STE. MICHELLE CHARDONNAY 2009 - Columbia Valley, Washington, USA (#232439) - $17.95
Tasting Note:
Grapefruit, lemon, herbal, mineral/stone aromas. Buttered popcorn, green apple flavours. Oak evident, but definitely in the background. Medium-bodied. Quality Chard that's well-made. Due to the power outage, I almost had grilled salmon on the BBQ. Instead, I will be having this with pan-fried salmon dusted with cajun. I think it will pair well. ;)


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