2012 Benzinger Chard mini review

Pale in color with a lovely varietal chard nose. Lots of pear/apple. On the mid palate the wine displays some beautiful fruit to match the nose, nice pear and apple coming through. On the medium length finish the wine is smooth displaying lots of nice vanilla notes. I would give it a solid 89. A very nice chard! The LCBO say full bodied and rich, I would agree!

From the LCBO web site:
Benziger Chardonnay 2012 – VINTAGES#: 34777
STYLE – Full-bodied & Rich
Juicy, bright Chardonnay with notions of peach, pear, and lemon meringe pie with an intriguing flint-smoke quality. A good choice for roast chicken. (VINTAGES panel, Aug. 2014) $19.95

Release Date:October 11, 2014
Alcohol/Vol 13.5% Made in: California, USA By: Kobrand Corporation Sugar Content:4 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Full-bodied & Rich

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2003 Devil’s Lair Red

This wine is Bordeaux style blend of 67% Cab Sauv, 25% Merlot and 8% cab franc. Dark in color with a nice mild nose of red berries. On the mid palate the wine displays red cherries and Cassis to match the nose along with some hints of plum and some lovely cab franc notes. Even at only 8% the cab franc is noticeable. On a medium length finish the wine displays some firm tannins and acidity on first opening that pass quickly and leave some nice tannins and smooth dryness. Interestingly I would say this wine still has some life to it, but I wouldn’t wait a whole lot longer or your won’t be appreciating the fruit. I would give it a solid 90. We paired it with a filet mignon and it went very well indeed. Yumm. I’ve had this one in my cellar since 2006 when it was given to me as a gift! So sadly not currently in the LCBO :(

From the LCBO web site at the time:
Full of powerful cassis-like fruit. Very good wine. Raw, floral, semi-sweet, a healthy squeeze of tannin and a reach of chocolate. Lots of ripe fruit, but balanced… Impressive. Drink: 2010-2016. Score – 92 (Campbell Mattinson, www.winefrontmonthly.com.au, 2006) $49.95

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Ruppertsberger 2012 Pinot Noir

I had the pleasure of attending a Next Generation Germany wine event last night and learned lots. As well as the usual assortments of Riesling and Gewurztraminer they had a number of Pinot Noirs there. I had never had a German Pinot so I was anxious to try them. The German name for them is Spätburgunder. This particular one is garnet in color with lovely rustic nose along with a hint of sweetness. On the mid palate the wine is an absolutely varietal Pinot displaying lovely rustic notes to match the nose along with some soft red berries, raspberries and the like. And then come the finish … this one is medium in length and packs a punch showing rich firm tannins, firm acidity and even some peppery notes. The alcohol was noticeable but not offensive. The complexity in the finish was really impressive. This is definitely a big edgy pinot. If your looking for a fruit bomb this sure aint it :) I would give it a solid 89. Sadly not in the LCBO $35 a bottle. Yumm. Probably one of my favorites of the evening! So much so I went back for seconds!

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Francis Ford Coppola 2013 Cab Sauv mini review

Dark in color with a lovely red cherry nose. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with some nice red cherries and cassis. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice acidity and tannins along with some nice dryness that linger in the mouth. A lovely fruit forward Cali cab sauv. Sadly not in the LCBO right now. $23.95 a bottle. I would give it an 88-89.

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Kacaba 2013 Barrel fermented Chardonnay

Golden in color with a lovely nose of pear and vanilla. On the mid palate the wine displays pear and vanilla to match the nose. The wine is a well made California style chard. On the medium length finish the wine is smooth and lingers nicely in the mouth. We paired it with pan fried scallops and it went very well. Yumm. I would give it a solid 90. Sadly not in the Lcbo and sold out at the winery. It was $39.95.

From the winery’s web site:
BARREL FERMENTED CHARDONNAY 2013
Details

A limited production wine sure to sell out quickly. A small batch wine with a projected bottling of 120 cases.

The Kacaba 2013 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay was barrel fermented using exclusively new French oak, which gives it its rich golden color and great texture. Aromas of honeyed apple, nuts, lemon-lime, and oak spices complement the full flavored palate of silky, buttercream flavors with hints of toasted bread and oak. This 2013 Chardonnay is nicely balanced, full bodied, and ends with a clean, elegant finish. Enjoy this wine on its own or match with poultry, creamy dishes, salmon or lobster.

Kacaba Vineyards Winery’s previous Barrel Fermented Chardonnay vintages have garnered ratings as high as 92 Points and are always impressive values.

Alcohol Level 13.00%
Residual Sugar (g/l) 4.7
Tasting Notes
The Kacaba 2013 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay was barrel fermented using exclusively new French oak, which gives it its rich golden color and great texture. Aromas of honeyed apple, nuts, lemon-lime, and oak spices complement the full flavored palate of silky, buttercream flavors with hints of toasted bread and oak. This 2013 Chardonnay is nicely balanced, full bodied, and ends with a clean, elegant finish. Kacaba Vineyards Winery’s previous Barrel Fermented Chardonnay vintages have garnered ratings as high as 92 Points and are always impressive values.

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2012 Murphy Goode Pinot Noir mini review

Garnet in color with a beautiful soft light red berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays soft light red berries to match the nose. Strawberries and raspberries along with some nice rustic notes. There’s a hint of sweetness. I would give it an 88-89 or so. Not in the LCBO but $22.98 available from Wine-wire.

From the winery’s web site:
We sourced our 2013 Pinot Noir from the cool, windswept regions this varietal likes best. From Mendocino to Monterey, we chose coastal vineyards that ripen grapes to vibrant black cherry character and bring out the hints of dried sage this wine reveals under the right conditions. Aging in both French and American oak contributed subtle notes of vanilla. No one can resist a darn Goode Pinot—try this one with coastal fare like cedar plank salmon or pair with your favorite pulled pork sandwich.

APPELLATION:California COMPOSITION:100% Pinot Noir T.A.:0.55g/100mL BOTTLE SIZE:750 ml pH:3.8 ALC. BY VOL.:13.5%

Our 2013 Pinot Noir comes from vineyards up and down the coast of California, including Monterey, Santa Barbara and Mendocino. Cool conditions in these prime growing spots keep grapes at a perfect balance between vibrant dark fruit character and bright acidity. Notes of vanilla from aging in French and American oak add complexity to the intense black cherry aromas and flavors.

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Ca’ Momi Chardonnay 2013

Pale in color with a mild nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some apple along with some honeysuckle and a bit of sweetness. Think almost Riesling like. On the medium length finish the wine displays some spicy notes along with some acidity. Not a fabulous chard. I would give it an 87-88. If I had more … I’d take them back. I actually poured the rest of the bottle down the drain :( Sorry fishies.

From the LCBO web site:
Ca’ Momi Chardonnay 2013 — VINTAGES#: 361972
STYLE – Full-bodied & Rich $19.95

Release Date:April 4, 2015
Alcohol/Vol 13.9% Made in: California, USA By: Ca’Momi Sugar Content:6 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:D – Dry Style:Full-bodied & Rich Description The name ‘Ca’ Momi’ means ‘house of Momi’ and refers to Momi dea Bionda, a fastidious vineyard keeper in Veneto, the region from whence the three proprietors of this winery hail. This big, delightfully palate-whomping Napa Chardonnay serves up ripe pineapple, peach nectar, melon and apple sauce with a wisp of smoke. It’s a great choice for barbecued pork.

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Zenato San Benedetto Lugana 2013

Pale in color with a mild nose with some peach coming through. On the mid palate the wine displays some strong peach notes along with some nice acidity and minerality. On the medium length finish the wine displays some firm acidity which lingers nicely in the mouth. This is a very food friendly wine. I would give it an 88 or so.

From the LCBO web site:
Zenato San Benedetto Lugana 2013
Trebbiano — VINTAGES#: 707158
STYLE – Full-bodied & Rich
Seductively demure aromas of orchard blossoms, freshly cut hay, and apple-peach cobbler. There’s a suggestion of sweetness and plenty of flavour on the palate, with applesauce on the outset leading to crunchy, crisp apple riding the knife-edge acidity of the tangy finish. (VINTAGES panel, Feb. 2015)
$16.95
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Managing your cellar

If you are going to start keeping a cellar you need the right tools. It is important to keep information about the wines in your cellar. Tasting notes, when you bought it, how much you paid, when it should be drunk by etc. Trying to remember a couple years later the details is difficult at best, impossible as your cellar get’s larger. And having an expensive bottle of wine spoil because you didn’t drink it soon enough is a very disappointing occurrence. For a number of years I have managed my own cellar database. It was so time consuming that I didn’t do it often, leading to my database being inaccurate.

I found a good article on Five steps in deciding how long to age a wine. So I thought I would pass it along. Cellaring a wine can be done for convenience or ageing. Some wines are meant to be drank now, some will keep for a while and still others actually improve with time. With the LCBO controlling our wine market (we all know what the C in LCBO stands for) wines can come into our market and not return for quite some time. So when you find something you like you may want to grab some extra to have on hand. All this leads to the desire to have a wine cellar.

I have tried a few other wine cellar databases like Natalie MacClean’s but couldn’t find a way to import my existing cellar. I did like that she had all the (or most of) Ontario wines in her database. The Android app runs well but is a little slow to start. I also tried Vivino whose app is really well done. Again no way to import an existing cellar (that I could see). And of course there is no interoperability between these offerings that might allow you to take a cellar or an already entered wine from one to the other …

Then Mr CWG put me onto Cellar Tracker. Funny I’ve had an account on cellar tracker for forever and looked at it originally but since I had my own database discounted it. But given Brett’s recommendation I decided to take another look. They have a very good web site, and a great Android app. The app works well on my Android phone and Android tablet. It includes a bar code scanner to make adding new wine and consuming wine as trouble free as it can be. If the wine is already in the extensive database, then adding it is easy, otherwise it’s a bit time consuming. They will even (somewhat manually) import your existing cellar. You send them a excel or access data base and they do the import. Anywhere there are questions as to which wine matches your bottle you manually go through and decide which one is the best fit, or add your own. One of the things I found most impressive is that they will spend a lot of time with you all without any cash up front. You get to try it as long as you like and contribute when you see fit and how much you see fit. You will need to manually enter the amount you pay for a wine since they of course have no idea how much you paid when their customers can come from anywhere in the world. And you can even print labels for the bottle using this links instructions.

I was impressed with Cellar Tracker. So much so, I have migrated off my own database, and have given a payment to them. If you have a cellar give Cellar Tracker a look. (By the way, I am in no way associated with Cellar tracker, nor have they paid me in anyway, in case you wonder.)

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Seresin Sauvignon Blanc 2013

Pale in color with a mild nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some lovely grassy notes along with some citrus and minerality. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice food friendly acidity and citrus notes. I would give it an 88-89.

From the LCBO web site:
Seresin Sauvignon Blanc 2013 — VINTAGES#: 735043
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
Grassy-great and herbal with crisp, ultra dry refreshment. Limes and lemons dance in delight across your palate. This medium-bodied white wine works as both an aperitif or companion to many dishes. A nice snap of refreshment on the finish. Complex and dry. Perfect for fresh seafood. Signature Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand’s Marlborough region. Seresin uses bio-dynamic farming principles, wild yeast for fermentation and the principles expounded on in 1924 by Rudolph Steiner. Try it with a fresh field greens salad or clams. Drink: 2013-2016. Score – 92. (Natalie MacLean, nataliemaclean.com, April 28, 2014) $21.95
Release Date:September 13, 2014 Alcohol/Vol 13.5% Made in: Marlborough, New Zealand By: Seresin Estates Ltd Sugar Content:2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Aromatic & Flavourful

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2011 Pearl Morissette Cabernet Franc Cuvée Persephone mini review

Dark in color with a nice smooth varietal cab franc nose of dark berries. On the mid palate the wine displays lovely cab franc dark berries to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice smooth tannins and dryness along with a hint of mint. This is a smooth, well made, easily approachable cab franc even now. I would give it an 88+. Sadly not in the LCBO so you will have to take a trip out to the winery (and make an appointment) where it is $38 a bottle or from 3050 Imports. I had not had a wine from these guys before so I was happy to hear their story. They are in Jordan and run a small winery open for tours by appointment. There apparently isn’t even a sign which would explain why I hadn’t noticed them before.

From the winery’s web site:
In vinification, we guide our carefully hand sorted grapes through the sole use of indigenous yeasts with no added sugars, tannins or acids. Minute sulphur additions, if any, are added before bottling without fining or filtration.

Date of harvest: October 29th, 31 November 2nd, 2011 Average° Brix at harvest: 21.7°

Vinification:
The fruit for the 2011 Cabernet Franc Cuvée Persephone was harvested by hand on three separate selective picking dates based on skin maturity. The first two pickings were sorted prior to destemming, followed by final selection of individual berries into 1-ton bins. The final harvest was sorted and transferred into oak fermentation vats as 100% whole cluster. The fruit was warmed to 20°C, at which point, indigenous yeast began fermentation.Gentle punch downs and pump-overs allowed for phenolic extraction from grape skins.
Fermentation temperature reached a maximum of 33°C, taking 22 days to complete sugar consumption. Post fermentation maceration lasted only three additional days due to issues with Brettanomyces on the rachis of the fruit. The wine was pressed early to stainless steel tank for stabilization before transfer to barrel.

Élevage:
The wine was left to sediment at 5°C over the winter. It was suggested by one of the leading oenology labs that cold temperature would effectively halt the progression of Brettanomyces yeast, and the cells would sediment out in the lees. After 5 months of sedimentation, the wine was racked off the faulty lees and transferred to neural French oak barrels. The wine was then treated with the clean lees of the 2010 Cabernet Franc and left to age and evolve in barrels for 8 months. The wine was racked to stainless steel tanks on January 23, 2013 to allow for settling before bottling. An extended clarification period eliminated the need for the addition of fining agents. The Pearl Morissette 2011 Cabernet Franc Cuvée Persephone was bottled unfiltered on April 18th, 2013.

Specifications at Bottling:
pH: 3.63
Total Acidity: 5.62 g tartaric acid/L
FSO2: 10 mg/L at bottling
TSO2: 44mg/L
Alcohol: 13.0%/vol
Residual Sugar: 0.31 g/L
Total Production: 598 cases of 12

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Sister’s Run Epiphany Shiraz 2012

Inky dark in color with a lovely nose of dark berries. On the mid palate the wine displays some lovely rich blackberries to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displays some acidity, alcohol and tannins. They ease nicely leaving a smooth finish. The wine is a bit young and tight. I would give it a solid 89. Which for the price is a great deal. A little bit of breathing or aging and you will be rewarded!

From the LCBO web site:
Sister’s Run Epiphany Shiraz 2012 — VINTAGES#: 269464
STYLE – Full-bodied & Smooth $15.95
Release Date:April 18, 2015
Alcohol/Vol 14.0% Made in: South Australia, Australia By: Sister’S Run Sugar Content:7 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style: Full-bodied & Smooth

DescriptionThe 2011 vintage of the Sister’s Run Epiphany Shiraz earned 90 points from Lisa Perrotti-Brown, MW, of erobertparker.com, and though this version is not yet reviewed, you can expect even more of the concentration that so impressed in the 2011 from the stellar 2012 vintage – considered the best vintage in 20 years by the likes of noted Australian wine critic James Halliday. For those who like to debate the veracity of New World vintage variation, this wine could be the Epiphany you’ve been searching for.

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Nobilo Regional Collection 2014 Sauv Blanc mini review

Pale in color with a nice smooth nose of grapefruit. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with some nice smooth grapefruit and citrus notes coming through. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice crisp acidity along with citrus lingering nicely in the mouth. A very nice food friendly wine. I would give it an 88+. Sadly not in the LCBO, $16.95 a bottle.

From the winery’s web site:
VINIFICATION
Grapes were selected from a wide variety of our Wairau and Awatere vineyards in Marlborough to ensure a complex and harmonious flavour profile.

The grapes were harvested at night, when the temperatures are cool, to preserve the vibrant fruit flavours and pressed immediately with minimal skin contact into stainless steel tanks. Fermentations were carried out at cool temperatures to retain the fresh fruit flavours. Each vineyard block was kept separate throughout the various stages of the winemaking process, allowing different parcels to blend into the Nobilo signature style that’s consistent year-on-year.

COLOUR: Pale yellow with brilliant clarity.
AROMA: Aromas of tropical fruit including pineapple, passion fruit, and guava. Flinty minerality with herbal notes of nettles and freshly cut tomato plant.
PALATE: Fresh, crisp and clean with zesty flavours of ripe tropical fruits, especially passionfruit and pineapple with subtle hints of nettle. The wine has excellent presence and mouthfeel, with balanced acidity and a generous finish.

FOOD PAIRING: Enjoyable on its own as an apéritif, or pairs well with any lighter seafood dish, lemon herb chicken, or summer salads.
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Dierberg 2012 Pinot noir mini review

Garnet in color with a lovely rustic nose varietal for a pinot. On the mid palate the wine displays some lovely fruit forward rustic notes and strawberry to match the nose. On the finish the wine is a smooth pinot with the rustic notes lingering nicely. This is a varietal well made wine. I would give it a solid 89. Sadly not in the LCBO but $59.95 a bottle.

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Ara Pathway 2014 Sauv Blanc

I love Sauv Blancs, so food friendly and versatile. Great and refreshing in the summer, goes great in the winter. This one is pale in color with an expressive nose that leaps up at you when you first pour it. Loads of fresh grapefruit on the nose. This gives you a hint of what’s to come … On the mid palate the wine displays edgy grapefruit to match the nose. On the long finish the wine displays lovely citrus notes, some crisp acidity as well as some subtle green notes. This is definitely a lively sauv blanc. If you like yours smooth and subtle, this sure isn’t the wine for you, but I enjoyed it. I would give it an 88-89, which for $14.95 is a great deal. Sadly not available in the LCBO, but you can buy it by the case from Charton and Hobbs. This was one of the first wines I tasted at the recent New Zealand wine Sauv blanc event where they paired it with Oysters at John and Sons Oyster House, and it went very well with the oysters. Yumm! As always, it’s a great day to be on this side of the food chain :)

From the winery’s web site:
Tasting Notes
The 2013 Pathway Sauvignon Blanc is a classic expression of Marlborough from Ara. Fully flavoured Sauvignon Blanc with lively citrus and tropical fruit aromas, delivered with a clean refreshing finish. This wonderful Sauvignon Blanc can be enjoyed immediately upon release or enjoy for up to 2 years.

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Marietta Christo Lot 2 NV mini review

This wine is Non-Vintage meaning that they blend grapes from different years to hand craft the taste of the wine. This particular wine is 69% Syrah 18% Grenache 12% Petite Sirah 1% Viognier according to the Lifford listing for it. Dark in color with a nice nose of dark berries. On the mid palate the wine displays loads of rick black berries to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice tannins, acidity, peppery notes and some nice dryness that lingers in the mouth. This is a lovely complex wine. I would give it an 88+. Not in the LCBO but available from Lifford in cases of 12 at $34.99 a bottle.

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Asylum 2012 Zinfandel mini review

Lots of people only know Zinfandel as the pink inexpensive summer sippers, but Zinfandels can also be nice fruit forward wines (think Merlot like, sorta kinda not really) or even big wines. In Italy the same grape is called the Primitivo. In California where most Zinfandels come from the wines are field blends. Which means interspersed within a field are a variety of different grapes. Because of this Zinfandels can vary wildly year to year. This particular wine is Zinfandel 92%, Carmenere 3%, Barbera 2.5%, and Petite Sirah 2.5%. Dark in color with a light red berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays fruit forward red berries to match the nose, raspberries and the like. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice dryness, and tannins. The red berry fruits linger nicely in the mouth. A very nice Zinf. I would give it an 88+. Not in the LCBO $24.95 a bottle.

From the winery:
The 2012 Asylum Zinfandel exudes vibrant colors of aubergine and dark raspberry. Dried red roses, all spice, coffee toasted walnuts and crushed cranberry resurrects your senses. Succulent blackberry, dark cranberry, dried underbrush and tobacco spill out of the glass. Firm, yet smooth integrated tannins with lush acidity are found on the lengthy finish.

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De Loach Russian River 2012 Pinot Noir mini review

Garnet in color with a lovely inviting nose of light red berries. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with lovely light red berries, strawberries and the like along with some nice classic rustic notes. This is a classic fruit forward yummy Pinot. On the lighter side of medium in length the wine displays some nice dryness and acidity. I would give it a solid 89. Sadly not in the LCBO but available from Lifford for $30 a bottle.

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Tools to take wine tasting notes with

While not a tasting note for wine, I thought this blog post might be useful to some folks.

For years I attended wine events, structured tasting and the like and taken paper notes. I have a drawer of them. They were less than useful after I got home. To put things in perspective at the recent California Wine fair in Toronto I managed to taste 50 wines in 3 hours and came out with detailed reviews on them all! My attention eventually went to looking for ways to take digital notes. But taking a laptop with a keyboard to an event just seemed impractical (not to mention looking like an uber geek, which I am :)). Even a netbook is just too big for walk around tastings. And without notes I found it hard to remember all the subtle nuances of the wines from the event to be able to write them up. (Click on the links for my detailed reviews on the devices) My attention first went to Samsung note 8 Android tablet which uses a Wacom digitized pen to allow accurate digital notes. The 8″ size is perfect for tastings. I replaced the stock pen with an upgraded pen that felt more like a real pen in the hand and even includes an eraser on the end. I quickly ran into a need to find a better program to take the notes in. The built in Samsung app, while good, lacked a lot of features like hand writing to text, searchable hand writing and the like. I went through a detailed review of apps to take digital notes and landed on Microsoft One Note (which is free by the way). One Note is cross platform (Android, Windows, Web portal and Apple) It includes features like convert hand writing to text, convert image to text (OCR), notes are searchable, can back end upload your notes to the cloud (to make them available on multiple devices anywhere) and many other features. Sadly the Android version of One Note on eventually discovered is severely handicapped in what it can do. I then found an Asus VivoTab Note 8 Windows tablet. I bought one on ebay inexpensively ($200) and was able to use my upgraded pen. This device is perfect. Great size and weight, reasonable battery life, great pen experience, and since it is on real Windows has all the One note features. This device is great and has truly revolutionized how I take my wine notes.

There are other pen enabled devices like the Microsoft Surface. The Surface is pricey, and too large for walk around tastings but the pen experience seems very good (I haven’t spent much time with one at this point). There’s also the Dell Venue 10 which also has an excellent pen, but again is a bit too large for walk around tastings.

So now you my readers can get more and more reviews, with more accuracy. Since starting to take notes this way I have had so many people come up to me faced with the same challenge. I hope you’ve enjoyed this post. It’s a short version of what has take me on a 2 year journey, a quest!
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Fielding Estate Bottled Chardonnay 2012

I’ve written up a number of Fielding wines in the past and enjoy them. The are great wines at reasonable prices. I often stop by Fieling when in Niagara. This one is pale in color with a lovely, varietal milder nose. On the mid palate there is nothing mild about this wine. Lot of varietal chard notes to match the nose. Think apple and pear along with some lovely vanilla notes, as well as some butter. The wine is slightly creamy in texture. On the medium length finish the wine displays some lovely pear/apple as well as some nice acidity. This is a beautifully made California style chard with lot of fruit coming through. I enjoyed this wine. We paired it with pan fried scallops along with alfredo sauce and it went very well. I would give this wine an 89-90 which for the price is a bargoon. I see the 2013 is now in the LCBO. I haven’t had that one yet but the description seems similar. Niagara chards can vary a whole lot year to year.

From the LCBO web site (for a different year):
Fielding Estate Bottled Chardonnay 2013 — VINTAGES#: 355842
Style – Full-bodied & Rich  ›
Toasty, buttery notes and a hint of caramel are balanced here by crisp apple fruit, good acid cut, and a mineral quality. It’s a Chardonnay that stylistically has one foot in big and rich, and the other in lean and focused. It’ll be very food-flexible – try it with crab cakes, roast chicken, or pork chops. (VINTAGES panel, May 2014) $17.75

Release Date:November 22, 2014 Alcohol/Vol 13.0% Made in:Ontario, Canada By:Fielding Estate Winery Sugar Content:2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry
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Duck Pond Cellars Pinot Gris 2013

Pale in color with a nice crisp nose of minerality and citrus notes. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice peach notes along with some minerality to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice crisp acidity with the citrus notes lingering nicely. This is a lighter, crisp pinot gris. I would give it an 88-89 or so. Very food friendly.

From the LCBO web site:
Duck Pond Cellars Pinot Gris 2013 — VINTAGES#: 333286 | 750 mL bottle
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
This long time Dundee Hills winery excels at crafting delicious wines. This Pinot Gris offers aromas of Asian pear, white peach and minerality, followed by flavors of pear, Golden Delicious apple and an alluring dusty quality, all backed with just a kiss of sweetness. (Andy Perdue & Eric Degerman, Wine Press Northwest, May 27, 2014) $19.95

Release Date:March 7, 2015
Alcohol/Vol 12.5% Made in:Oregon, USA By:Fries Family Cellars Sugar Content:7 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry
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2013 The Show Cab Sauv

I last reviewed the 2011 release of this wine and enjoyed it, so when I saw this one I grabbed it. Dark in color with a nice nose of black berries. On the mid palate the wine displays some lovely bold black cherries to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displayed some nice tannins, some oak and acidity with the black cherries lingering nicely. I would give this an 89. It is a lovely varietal fruit forward cab sauv. We paired it with a BBQ strip loin steak and it went very nicely. And of course, chocolate brownie for dinner! Yumm … And on sale right now for $2 off.

The Show Cabernet Sauvignon — LCBO#: 383885
STYLE – Full-bodied & Smooth
Medium ruby in colour; aromas of plum, raspberry, black currant, white pepper and vanilla; the palate is dry and full body with flavours of rich black fruit, spice and a touch of vanilla. WAS $17.95 $15.95 SAVE $2.00

Alcohol/Vol 13.9% Made in: California, USA By: Sutter Home Winery Sugar Content:9 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: D – Dry
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Vistalba Corte Malbec/Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Dark in color with a nice nose of dark berries. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with dark berries coming through in spades. The wine is medium in length with some nice firm tannins and some nice complex dryness coming through. This is a lovely varietal Malbec. I would give it a solid 89 which for the price is a good deal!

From the LCBO web site:
Vistalba Corte Malbec/Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 —VINTAGES#: 398818
Shows good balance to the crushed red plum and raspberry flavors, matched to firm mineral and graphite notes. The supple finish of chocolate and spice lingers with creamy accents. Drink now. Score – 89. (Kim Marcus, winespectator.com, June 15, 2014) $14.95

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Nk’Mip Qwam Qwmt Chardonnay 2012

Hot on the heals of the tremendous Cab sauv from this winery I decided to take a flyer and buy the chard. Pale in color with a lovely rich varietal chard nose that jumps up at you from the glass. There’s nothing subtle about this one. On the mid palate the wine displays lovely green apple and pear along with some nice buttery and vanilla notes. The LCBO style puts it as Full bodied and rich and they really mean it. The wine is medium in length on the finish with some nice minerality hanging around. We paired it with BBQ lobster and it went like a charm. I would give this wine a solid 90. This is a well made wine. Yumm, another hit from Okanagan!

From the LCBO web site:
Nk’Mip Qwam Qwmt Chardonnay 2011 —VINTAGES#: 391813
STYLE – Full-bodied & Rich $22.95
Alcohol/Vol 13.5% Made in: British Columbia, Canada By: Nk’Mip Cellars Sugar Content:5 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra Dry Style:Full-bodied & Rich

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2012 Simi Cabernet Sauvignon

Dark in color with a mild red berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some mild cherry notes. On the medium length finish the wine displays some tannins and dryness most noticeable without food. This is a softer more subtle cab. I would give it an 88 or so.

From the LCBO web site:
Simi Cabernet Sauvignon — VINTAGES#: 25221
Grown in the cooler-climate Alexander Valley, this is an excellently structured and balanced Cabernet brimming with juicy cassis and fresh blackcurrant fruit backed by toasty oak. This is big enough for flavourful cuts of meat or aged cheeses and has the poise to cellar for 5+ years. (VINTAGES panel, Oct. 2014) $22.95
Release Date:February 21, 2015
Alcohol/Vol 13.5% Made in: California, USA By:Constellation Brands Inc. (Us) Sugar Content: 6 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry
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