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  • Date publishedSunday, December 25, 2011

2009 Maipe Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (Argentina) - Wine Review

Purchased this Argentinian Cabernet Sauvignon from the November 12 Vintages release, and probably should've held on to this red wine a bit longer as the tannins needed more time to develop.

MAIPE RESERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2009 - Mendoza, Argentina (#246116) (D) - $17.95

Tasting Note:
Cherry aromas from the cork. Earth, currant and cassis aromas in the glass, and follow through on the palate with herbal spiciness and espresso. I knew I should've waited opening this one, as tannins need more time (1-2 years) to settle down. It went well with homemade Christmas fruit cake.

Chocolate and espresso flavours come to the fore on the second day. This is tasting MUCH better tonight. Try an aerator or decant if opening in the near future. This should pair well with oven-roasted whole chicken, with garlic mash potatoes.

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  • Date publishedSaturday, December 24, 2011

2008 Chateau des Charmes Vidal Icewine (Ontario) - Wine Review

Got this one specifically for the #winechat on Icewine that took place on Twitter on . And wow - was it ever a GREAT choice.

CHÂTEAU DES CHARMES VIDAL ICEWINE 2008 - VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada (#565861) (S) (200mL) - $25.95

Tasting Note:
Icewine goodness from the cork - apricot, honey aromas. Peach and honey aromas from the glass. Syrupy mouthfeel with notes of peach, burnt honey, apricot and red apple. Absolutely delicious! If you've never tried an Icewine or are craving some, this is one that will fulfill your taste buds and won't hurt your wallet too much! I wish there was a 375mL version.

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  • Date publishedFriday, December 16, 2011

Red Shot Lane Pinot Noir 2009 (Oregon) - Wine Review

Purchased this red wine from the Sept. 17 Vintages Release which compared Burgundy and Oregon Pinot Noir. I went with the Oregon version, as we do not get enough wines from that region here in Ontario. Willamette Valley is a region widely becoming known for their first class Pinots that rival Burgundy.

RED SHOT LANE PINOT NOIR 2009 - Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA (#242560) (XD) - $18.95
Tasting Note:
Not a fan of plastic corks, but good aromas emanating from it. Freshly tilled earth is the first thing you will notice, followed by cherry, toast, and smoke aromas in the glass. Strawberry, cherry, and some light spiciness at mid-length on the palate. A classic Pinot, but with a little weight added to this light- to medium-bodied red wine and slightly chewy tannins on the medium-long finish. Enjoying this right now with Chardonnay Wine Biscuits, followed by a Canadian classic - Swiss Chalet. This one is yummy and highly recommended.

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  • Date publishedMonday, December 12, 2011

2009 Flagstone Writer's Block Pinotage (South Africa) - Wine Review

Purchased this red wine from the November 26th Vintages release and decided to open it now instead of hanging on to it for another 12-24 months.

FLAGSTONE WRITER’S BLOCK PINOTAGE 2009 - WO Western Cape, South Africa (#243337) (XD) - $19.95

Tasting Note:
Earthy, currant, cassis and oak aromas from the glass with more currant/cassis, and black fruit notes on the medium-full bodied palate. A touch of spiciness at mid-length. Tannins would allow ageing another 2 years or so, but drinking well right now. Quite good. It's pairing nicely with Dofino Jalapeno Havarti cheese.

Flagstone makes really good wine. This is the 3rd wine I've tasted from this winery, and I have not been disappointed even once. I reviewed their Music Room Cabernet Sauvignon last May.

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  • Date publishedMonday, December 5, 2011

Holiday Cheer Wine Picks: Dec. 10 LCBO Vintages Release

The next LCBO Vintages release is nearly upon us, and just in time for the holidays. The new release of wines will be in stores on . To get ready for the holiday season, which typically means at least few get-togethers with friends & family, I have chosen something from each of the 5 major types  of wine - red, white, icewine, sparkling wine, and even a rosé.

Among the reds, two Malbecs from Argentina stand out. In white, the Pinot Gris from Alsace is off-dry. If you prefer something a bit sweeter and different, try Musqué Spritz from our local Malivoire Wines.

Want something even sweeter? Try the Stoney Ridge Vidal Icewine or the Sparkling Vidal Icewine from Inniskillin.

Enjoy my picks this week as you celebrate the holidays with your friends and family!

Red Wine
  • MAIPE RESERVE MALBEC 2009 - Mendoza, Argentina (#247320) (XD) - $17.95
  • FINCA EL ORIGEN GRAN RESERVA MALBEC 2009 - Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina (#065425) (XD) - $19.95
  • LES HAUTS DE CASTELLAS VACQUEYRAS 2009 - AC, Rhône, France (#177634) (XD) - $19.95
  • MONTES ALPHA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2009 - Apalta Vineyard, Colchagua Valley, Chile (#322586) (XD) - $19.95
  • RAMON RAMOS MONTE TORO ROBLE 2008 - DO Toro, Spain (#247783) (XD) - $14.95

White Wine:
  • ANNE BOECKLIN PINOT GRIS RÉSERVE 2008 - AC Alsace, France (#106831) (D) - $18.95
  • MALIVOIRE MUSQUÉ SPRITZ 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#189670) (M) - $19.95

Rosé Wine:
  • DOMAINE DE RIMAURESQ ROSÉ Cru Classé 2010 - AC Côtes de Provence, France (#226647) (XD) - $18.95

  • STONEY RIDGE VIDAL ICEWINE 2007 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#337402) (MS) 375 mL - $34.95

Sparkling Wine:
  • FLAT ROCK RIDDLED SPARKLING Méthode Classique 2008 - VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#187377) (D) - $29.95
  • INNISKILLIN SPARKLING VIDAL ICEWINE 2010 - VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada (#560367) (MS) 375 mL - $69.95
  • FOSS MARAI EXTRA DRY PROSECCO - DOC Treviso, Veneto, Italy (#729392) (D) - $18.95

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  • Date publishedFriday, December 2, 2011

2009 MezzoMondo Sangiovese Merlot (Puglia) - Wine Review

The roof of my mouth is slightly burnt from today's lunch, so this red wine may feel a little spicier than it really is. I received this one as a gift and having looked through my database, I found that I had tasted the 2008 version last year. Let's see how this vintage compares...

MEZZOMONDO SANGIOVESE MERLOT 2009 - IGT Daunia, Puglia, Italy (#079327) (D)

Tasting Note:
Aromas of crushed red berries, black fruits, herbal notes and touch of barnyard. Replays of red fruits on the light- to medium-bodied palate. Ripe fruit and is ready to drink now. A good, quaffable wine that can satisfy many palates at family gatherings. Will be enjoying the rest of this with KFC!

The 2008 was rated as follows:
Lots of red fruit aromas, candied berries. Red fruit, licorice, herb, menthol flavours.

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