Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc 2016

Pale in color with a mild citrus nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice subtle citrus notes to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice acidity and dryness. The minerality comes through nicely. This is a softer, more elegant style of sauv blanc so be careful what you pair it with because it can easily be overcome. To my tastes this is not quite what I look for in a sauv blanc, especially given the price. I would give it an 88-

From the LCBO web site Check LCBO stock:
Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc 2016 — VINTAGES#: 191593
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
Silky and elegant, with crisp Key lime, Meyer lemon and fresh herbal shadings on a light, refreshing body. Shows plenty of persistence on the finish. Drink now. Best Values. Score – 89. (MaryAnn Worobiec, winespectator.com, Oct. 31, 2017) $19.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:October 27, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.9% Made in: California, USA By: Sutter Home Winery Sugar Content:4 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Aromatic & Flavourful

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Alta Vista Premium Cabernet Franc 2016

This one caught my eye in that I think it’s the first time I’ve seen what appears to be a 100% cab franc from Argentina so I wondered what it would be like. Inky dark in color with a nice black berry nose. On the mid palate the wine does not disappoint with nice black berries to match the nose along with some nice mocha. With food this is an approach now food friendly cab franc. On it’s own and you get to appreciate the rich palate coating tannins that build nicely in the mouth, lively acidity and beautiful dryness that this wine has to offer. Quite and impressive in it’s complexity given it’s humble price. It can easily keep a couple of years. I would give it a solid 88+ which given the price is a great deal. Quite a varietal spot on Cab franc.

From the LCBO web site Check stock:
Alta Vista Premium Cabernet Franc 2016 — VINTAGES#: 609081
STYLE – Medium-bodied & Fruity
Dried red plums, redcurrants, vanilla and lots of nutmeg. Full body, ripe, bold tannins, some juicy acidity and a fruit-forward finish. Not the most subtle wine, but this remains very drinkable. Score – 91. (James Suckling, jamessuckling.com, April 5, 2018) $17.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:October 27, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.9% Made in: Mendoza, Argentina By:La Casa Del Rey S.A. Sugar Content: 2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Medium-bodied & Fruity

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Lenz Moser Prestige Grüner Veltliner 2016

I’m a big Grüner fan. This one is pale in color with a mild nose. With food the wine was quite light and non-descript. I served it with Mac and cheese and my gf had a cabbage role, and both us found the food overwhelmed the wine. Which is odd given that neither is all that big in flavors. Once we were finished the meal we sipped the wine and got some nice citrus and minerality. There’s a slight hint of effervescence on the tongue. It builds nicely in the mouth, albeit subtle. I would give it an 87-88, only because I look for more in a wine.

From the LCBO web site Check stock:
Lenz Moser Prestige Grüner Veltliner 2016 — VINTAGES#: 71233
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
Pale yellow straw color. Tropical aromas and flavors of pineapple, passion fruit, and honeydew melon with a satiny, vibrant, dryish light body and a medium-length quartz and lime finish with fine, silky, fruit tannins. A zippy and fruity Grüner for hot summer nights and grilled fish dinners. Highly Recommended. Best Buy. Score – 89. (tastings.com, June 20, 2017) $16.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:October 27, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 12.5% Made in: Niederösterreich, Austria By: Lenz Moser Gesselschaft M.B.H.Sugar Content: 5 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style

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2015 Franciscan Chard

Slightly golden in color with a nice pear/apple nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some rich pear and apple. On the medium length finish the wine displays lovely vanilla, butter and some butterscotch along with some nice dryness and acidity. The wine has some nice creamyness to the texture. This is definitely a well oaked chard, which won’t be to some people’s tastes, but is right up my alley. It’s not over baked, just right. I would give it an 88+ which for the price is a great deal. We paired it with pan fried lake perch in panko bread crumps and it went well, but was a little overpowering for the perch. The LCBO say full bodied and rich … hell ya!

From the LCBO web site Check stock:
Franciscan Chardonnay 2015 — VINTAGES#: 496125
STYLE – Full-bodied & Rich
Franciscan Estate was established in 1973 and began producing wines in 1975. This beautiful Chardonnay brings complex notions of rich vanilla, spices, apple butter, tropical fruit and lemon. Pair with pork-belly hoagies and grilled pineapple salad. (Vintages panel, July 2017) $19.75
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:March 17, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.5% Made in:California, USA By: Constellation Brands Inc. (Us) Sugar Content:5 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra

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2017 Rocca Delle Macie Moonlite (mini review)

I recently had the pleasure of attending the Italian Consulate wine tasting at Roy Thompson hall in Toronto. This is only the second time I’ve attended … it’s positively overwhelming. Over 127 tables of wines being poured. So your looking at over 600 wines being poured. Amazing event, and of course, lots of great food to boot. This year I decided on a different approach. Focus on whites. Italy has a ton of unique varietals that have even been proven genetically to be unique! With that … on with the review. Pale in color with a mild nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice crisp dry minerality, some green apple and pear. The wine is subtle at first and it builds very nicely in the mouth. It’s quite complex but you can easily overlook it. I’m not sure how it would hold up to food but I was quite impressed with this wine. I would give it an 88 or so. Sadly not in the LCBO, available from Profile Wine group for $17.95 a bottle in cases of 6. I wish more suppliers would offer cases of 6!

From the winery’s web site:
MOONLITE Toscana IGT
Grape varietals: Chardonnay 35%, Vermentino 30%, Pinot Grigio 20%, Trebbiano 15%
Production Technique
The grapes involved in the Moonlite blend come from selected vineyards in Maremma Area. The wine is produced following the most
advanced fermentation techniques for white wines.
Wine description
Color: straw-yellow with green reflections
Bouquet: intense aromas of white flowers with hints of flint.
Taste: Fresh mineral notes (from the Vermentino) blend perfectly with toast and citrus notes(from the Chardonnay).
Winemaker’s recommendations
Excellent alone, and particularly well-suited to light appetizers, seafood, soft cheeses and white meat dishes. Serve chilled.

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2017 Grayson cellar Cab sauv

We had this at Red’s Midtown off their by the glass menu … Dark in color with a rich vibrant nose that just jumps out at you. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with lovely bold rich dark cherries. On the medium length finish the wine displays nice smooth tannins and nice acidity. This is a beautiful fruit forward Cali style of cab. Right to my tastes. I would give it an 89 or so. Yummy. This is more of a drink now style of wine, but should easily last a year. It’s very food friendly. I paired it with a cheese ravioli in red sauce and it went perfectly.

At Red’s it was ~16 a glass. It’s not in the LCBO, but available for $21.95 a bottle in cases of 12 from Rogers and Company. This is one of those usual tricks restaurants love to do which is pour by the glass wines that are not in the LCBO in hope you don’t know how much they have marked it up … In this case 3X …

From the Rogers web site:
The 2017 Grayson Cabernet Sauvignon shows a dark ruby colour with a rich nose of blackberry, raspberry, and a hint of black pepper. This is an intense Cabernet with a round mouth feel and soft, lingering finish. The palate is full of rich fruit and a soft note of toasted French oak.

This vintage is a new release that has yet to be submitted to press, but the previous vintage, 2016, was awarded a Double Gold Medal for having earned 99 points in the 2018 California State Fair’s Wine Competition. This made Grayson Cabernet Sauvignon the “Best of Class” California Cabernet in a field of over 450 wines!

“A frequent entry into these best buy pages, winemaker Larry Levin knows how to fashion flavorful, authentic tasting whites and reds at bargain-basement prices.”

Robert Parker on Grayson Cellars, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Nov 2014

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2017 Silverpoint Sauv Blanc

I recently noticed this one in the general list section and hadn’t tried it, so gave it a whirl. I’m always looking for my next new fav daily wine, and at this price it was worth a flyer! Pale in color with a nice citrus and grassy nose. On the mid palate the wine spot on matches the nose with nice zesty citrus notes. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice grassy notes and the citrus lingers nice. It’s got some lovely lively acidity and nice dryness. It coats the palate. The complexity of this wine belies it’s bargain price. Grab some before they figure it out. I would give an 88+. A perfect match for so many foods! The LCBO say aromatic and flavorful which is a perfect description of this wine!

From the LCBO web site Check stock
Silver Point Sauvignon Blanc — LCBO#: 187013
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
Pale straw colour; grassy, gooseberry and grapefruit aromas; medium body; nice core of rich fruit flavours with good acidity, yet still elegant; long strong finish $13.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:April 25, 2012
Alcohol/Vol 12.5% Made in: New ZealandBy: Cooper’s Creek Vineyard Ltd. Sugar Content: 5 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Aromatic & Flavourful

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2017 Burnt Ship Bay Sauv blanc

Pale in color with nice citrus, minerally nose. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with citrus, and minerality coming through. This is a smoother, milder sauv blanc, but spot on varietal. Medium in length on the finish the citrus notes and acidity are notable. It’s nice and dry! This is definitely a milder sauv blanc up front, so be sure and pair it with something not too lively or you wont be tasting the wine. I paired it with a cajun catfish and honestly, it was slightly over powered. It could easily be sipped on the patio in the summer. The wine builds nicely in the mouth especially without food. I would give it an 88-. Not bad at all for the price. I emailed the winery and was told “the vines are from our (Burnt Ship Bay) own vineyard. They are now 5 years old. The vineyard is in the border of the Four Mile Creek and Lakeshore sub-appellations. Great spot for this varietal!”

from the LCBO web site Check stock:
Burnt Ship Bay Estate Sauvignon Blanc — LCBO#: 517185
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
Sited in historic Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Burnt Ship Bay Estate Winery is making delicious wines for all palates. Expect aromas and flavours of grapefruit, gooseberry, lemon, pepper and freshly cut grass. Light and refreshing this is a perfect match for grilled salmon with rosemary potatoes and grilled vegetables. $15.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 25, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 12.0% Made in:Ontario, Canada By: Burnt Ship Bay Estate Winery Ltd. Sugar Content: 2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra Dry Style: Aromatic & Flavourful Varietal: Sauvignon Blanc This is a VQA wine

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Clos de los Siete 2014

This is a wine that has been consistently good over a lot of years, and spoiler alert … still is. Inky dark in color with a nice dark berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice dark berries to match the nose along with some nice complexity. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice dryness, smooth tannins and some nice peppery notes. I would give it an 88+ Very nice! The LCBO say full bodied and smooth and I highly agree!

From the LCBO web site (check stock):
Clos de los Siete 2014 — VINTAGES#: 622571
STYLE – Full-bodied & Smooth
Every bit as good as the stellar 2009, this is an outstanding release from Michel Rolland’s Vista Flores project. Combining Malbec, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon with a dash of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, it’s nuanced, refreshing and harmonious, with subtle oak integration, very fine tannins and bright, aromatic fruit. Drink Date: 2017-24. Score – 93. (Tim Atkin, MW, timatkin.com, Argentina Special Report 2017) $23.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:October 13, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 14.5% Made in: Mendoza, Argentina By: Michel Rolland Sugar Content:4 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry

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2017 Nobilo Sauv Blanc

Pale in color with a nice citrus and grassy nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice tart citrus notes, grapefruit and grassyness. This is a nice edgy bold sauv blanc that can hold up really well to spicy food. On the medium length finish the wine has some nice mouth grip with the citrus and minerality living on nicely in the mouth. It’s nice and dry! I would give it an 88+. This wine is in the general list and is my new goto for sauv blanc. Exactly what I enjoy! New bottle, new look, even bolder this year!

From the LCBO web site (Check stock):
Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough — LCBO#: 415745
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
The Regional Collection sauvignon blanc showcases the best of Marlborough with classic and fresh flavours. The nose is youthful with grapefruit, pineapple, lemongrass and lime; on the palate it is dry with high acidity and zingy citrus fruit leading the way along with classic gooseberry flavour. $16.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:May 2, 2017
Alcohol/Vol 12.0% Made in: Marlborough, New Zealand By: Nobilo Vintners Sugar Content:5 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry

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Eidosela Albariño 2017

Slightly golden in color with a mild citrus nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice crisp dry minerality with a hint of honeysuckle, almost reminiscent of a super dry riesling. On the medium length finish the wine has some mild acidity and citrus notes. You can taste the honey suckle a tad as well. This was a good wine, but not what I expected. I would give it an 87-88. Make sure you have this with something mild as it’s not that bold or long on the finish. We paired it with a Shrimp fettucine alfredo and it went fine.

From the LCBO web site Check stock:
Eidosela Albariño 2017 — VINTAGES#: 336271
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
Lemon and lime scented with a concentrated mid-palate of apricot and grapefruit compote. Long grapefruit finish. Score – 87. (Decanter World Wine Awards, 2018) $18.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 29, 2018
750 mL bottleAlcohol/Vol 13.0% Made in: Rias Baixas, Spain By: Interbev Gmbh Sugar Content:4 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra Dry Style:Aromatic & Flavourful

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2017 Conte D’Attimis Maniago sauv blanc mini review

I love my sauv blancs, so food friendly and versatile. And nice to sip on their own too! This one is pale in color with a mild nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice, crisp, dry, citrus notes along with some nice green grassyness. The wine has some lovely mouth grip and the dryness lingers beautifully. I quite enjoyed this one. Available on private order from Heirloon Vine Imports for $27.10 a bottle, by the case. I would give it an 88 or so.

From the winery’s web site:
Sauvignon 2017
WHITE WINE | D.O.C. Friuli Colli Orientali VINEYARD.

Grapes used: Sauvignon blanc grapes from Italian and French clones. This is a vine of French origin, grown in the Eastern Hills of Friuli region since the nineteenth century where it has found the ideal environment to best express the elegant aroma typical of this wine variety.

Position: the hills of the Sottomonte Estate in the municipality of Buttrio (Udine), with their fantastic landscape, provide an ideal wine country for excellent wine making. The C.D.O. (controlled denomination of origin) area is the Colli Orientali del Friuli (Eastern Hills of Friuli). Exposure is north.

Terrain: hill and foothill area, soil composed of marl and sandstone with a predominantly clayey component.

Training system: Sylvotz and double bending canes (called cappuccina).

Traditional training techniques in Friuli, optimised for quality production through reduced vine vigour and a lower number of buds.

Phytosanitary crop protection: low environmental impact focussing on traditional products with a short persistence, distributed according to the agroalimentary programme for crop protection.

CELLAR:
Harvesting: manual harvesting by a qualified, suitably trained workforce from the second ten days in September with selection of the best grapes in the field and fast transfer to the cellar.

Vinification method: white wine fermentation (without skins) with gentle pressing at low temperature under immobile covering to protect the potential quality of the grapes from oxidisation. Low temperature fermentation (14-17 °C) to help develop andpreserve the most characteristic aromas of this grape variety.

Maturation and ageing: first in a “sur lies” tank and in the bottle, stored horizontally in our sixteenth century underground cellar for at least four weeks after bottling.

WINE:
Sensory characteristics: straw yellow colour. The intense and elegant bouquet offers a wide range of sensations, from white fleshed and citrus fruits to typical bell peppers and tomato leaves, with delicate hints of elderberry and vanilla, emerging after maturation.Fine and aromatic, flavourful and velvety, the soft taste structure suggests great potential development. The persistent aftertaste features warm and balanced aromatic undertones.

Food and wine pairings: excellent served as an aperitif, with light hors d’oeuvres and first courses. Superb accompaniment to “noble” seafood such as lobster, crayfish, salmon or salty fish. Ideal with thick and thin soups, white meats and delicate cheeses.

Longevity: reaches maximum aromatic expression of the vine already in the first year and then develops with great elegance for a period of time that can easily exceed four years in the bottle.

Service: best served chilled (12 °C)

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2014 Castello Di Roncade Raboso Dell’Arnasa mini review

I had the pleasure of being invited to Heirloom Vine imports first tasting. They are a newish wine importer in Ontario. The tasting had some super unique wines, and this was one of them. It is a grape I had never heard of before, which is always an interesting experience. Having never had one before I had no expectations. I was warned up front that this was a bigger, bolder wine … Dark in color with a nice dark berry nose. Knowing this wine has bigger I held it in the mouth a little longer than usual. There’s some nice dark berry flavors and some pepper coming right into the top of the mouth. And then … bam, the finish. And this is where this wine lives where it displays some nice big firm tannins, lively acidity, and nice dryness. If you like your wines smooth and elegant … choose something else, wimps need not apply 🙂 In some ways this wine reminds me of some big bold tempranillos that also live primarily in the finish, which for my tastes is pretty good company. If your going to enjoy it now, I highly recommend something that can hold up to it, like a big steak or lamb. I can only imagine this wine will easily hold up for another 5 years or more, where the finish will soften and you can enjoy the fruit more. At $25.50 a bottle available by private order by the case from Heirloom. Very nice, and a unique experience! I would give it an 88 or so.

From the winery’s web site:
Native to the Treviso wine region this variety was already well established in the times of the Venetian Serenissima Republic as a vin da viajo, which broadly translates from the local dialect into “suitable for travel”. It is a robust wine with firm tannins and refreshing acidity.

Colour: Deep ruby red with garnet highlights

Nose: Vibrant and vinous with lots of ripe black cherry

Palate: Savoury, full-bodied and very pleasant, it is both plush and vibrant. Slight hints of wood

Food pairing: Flavourful red meat dishes and hearty fat-rich food

Ageing: 36 months in oak barrels

Alcohol: 13% min.
Residual sugar: < 3 g/l
Total acidity: 6,00 g/l
Serving temperature: 20° C

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Altos De Torona O Rosal 2015 mini review

This is one of the wines of the world program’s offerings. Slightly golden in color with a nice crisp dry nose with some hints of citrus coming through. On the mid palate the wine spot on matches the nose with crisp dry, tart notes. On the medium length finish the citrus notes are subtle, but the minerality leaves a nice coating in the mouth that hangs around nicely. This is a lively white that would hold up well to spicy food. On the spec sheet for the wine it says 2.2 g/l and I can totally believe it. I would give this an 88+. A lovely expression of how bold an Albariño can be! Yumm … The wine is respresented in Ontario by AMV Whiz trading

From the LCBO web site Check LCBO stock:
Altos De Torona O Rosal 2015 — LCBO#: 262997
A high-level wine with mystic echoes. Distinctive character as a result of our varieties (Albariño, Loureiro and Caiño). Complex aromatic nuances, where fresh and mature fruits converge. High-intensity, with hints of stone fruits and tropical touches of mango and passion fruit. Sweet, well structured, and with tingling vivacity, well balanced on the palate. Long persistent aftertaste while respecting the aromas and flavours of the varieties. Ideal with shellfish, sushi and spicy foods. $25.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:October 13, 2016
Alcohol/Vol 12.5% Made in: Rias Baixas, Spain By: Hga Bodegas Y Vinedos De Altur Varietal:Loureiro Blend

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Château Hauchat 2015

Dark in color with a nice black berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays nice black berries to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice smooth tannins, nice dryness and nice acidity. I bet your never going to see this coming … It’s a nice wine. Not one of the most complex Bordeau’s I’ve had but good none the less. I would give it an -88. Now if you can convince yourself to belly up for an additional $4 go for Chateau Bergeron which was much more complex and tasty.

From the LCBO web site:
Château Hauchat 2015 — VINTAGES#: 123489
STYLE – Medium-bodied & Fruity
$17.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 15, 2018
Alcohol/Vol13.2% Made in:Bordeaux, France By:Jean-Bernard Saby & Fils, vitic. Sugar Content:2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Medium-bodied & Fruity Varietal:Bordeaux Red Description: John Szabo, MS, recommends pairing this stunning value from the incredible 2015 vintage with a juicy piece of meat: ‘A tasty Bordeaux here for the money, a little rustic and firm, but characterful. Tart acids and grippy tannins can be softened with salt, fat and protein at the table.’ (winealign.com, Nov. 29, 2017)

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Wayne Gretzky Whisky Oak Aged Red 2017

This wine caught my curiosity in that it is aged in whiskey barrels … Dark in color with a soft red berry nose. On the mid palate there are some soft red berries, cherries and the like. On the medium length finish … bam there it is solid dominant and overwhelming whiskey notes. This is NOT a subtle flavor. It’s really noticeable, and really overwhelming. There are some soft tannins and acidity. This isn’t a bad wine, but so not to my taste. To be honest, if I had some more left over, I’d take it back. I would give it an 86 at best. Yuck 🙁 Consider this a public service announcement … that is all.

From the LCBO web site:
Wayne Gretzky Whisky Oak Aged Red 2017
Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot/Cabernet Franc — VINTAGES#: 617738
STYLE – Medium-bodied & Fruity
About 25% of this Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot blend was matured in whisky barrels. Ripe and beautifully textured, this is very enjoyable. Red cherry, blackcurrant and a good mix of lifted dark fruit and sweet spices with smoke and vanilla. This is long and luxurious with a velvety texture and moderately drying tannins. The whisky barrel ageing is noticeable but does not dominate; it’s marvellously integrated. Ideal for lamb stew. (Vintages panel, Aug. 2018) $19.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date: September 15, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.3% Made in: Ontario, Canada By:Andrew Peller Limited Sugar Content:7 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry

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Château Cailleteau Bergeron Prestige 2014

I always look for those diamonds in the rough, those Bordeaux’s that rise above their humble price. A colleague of mine recommended this one, so I grabbed it. Inky dark in color with a nice soft plummy nose. On the mid palate the wine is a classic Bordeaux with nice black berries, rich bold fruit coming through. On the medium length finish the wine displays beautiful silky tannins, some nice acidity and lovely mouth grip. It’s nice and dry! The complexity of this wine belies it’s price. A real deal. For me this is a classic Bordeaux as few can do as well. It’s made in an appreciate now style. It would last a good couple years, but I’m not sure how long it will last. I would give it an 89, which for the price is a steal.

From the LCBO web site:
Bergeron Prestige 2014 — VINTAGES#: 550285t
Château Cailleteau Bergeron Prestige 2014
STYLE – Full-bodied & Firm
This wine from Blaye sister-brother team of Marie-Pierre et Pierre-Charles Dartier is perfumed, ripe with black fruits and with a generous smooth texture. With the hint of tannin from the wood aging and the black-plum fruits, it will be a rich, generous wine. Drink from 2018. Cellar Selection. Score – 90. (Roger Voss, Wine Enthusiast, Dec. 1, 2016) $21.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 1, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 14.2% Made in: Bordeaux, France By: Dartier Sugar Content:4 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra Dry Style: Full-bodied & Firm

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Ventisquero Grey Glacier Single Block Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

I last tasted the 2014 vintage of this wine and loved it, it was my favorite wine of last year’s Chilean wine fest … Well it’s back! One can never assume that a follow on vintage will be able to repeat past excellence … So … Dark in color with a nice dark berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some nice smooth dark cherries along with some nice oaky notes. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice smooth tannins and acidity. It is really quite good. Another lovely vintage. I would give it an 88+. Yumm.

From the LCBO web site:
Ventisquero Grey Glacier Single Block Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 — VINTAGES#: 485474
STYLE – Full-bodied & Smooth
This attractive varietal Cabernet comes from the granite soils of the Trinidad Vineyard in the coastal part of the Maipo Valley. Polished, youthful and aromatic, it has notes of mint, cedarwood and dried herbs. Drink Date: 2019-2025. Score – 91. (Tim Atkin, MW, timatkin.com, Chile Special Report 2018) $19.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 15, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 14.4%Made in: Maipo Valley, Chile By: Vina Ventisquero Ltda. Sugar Content:3 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry

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2016 Crew Merlot

Back in 2012 I had the chance to try the 2008 vintage of this wine at a wine show and was impressed. Being a mini review I looked forward to trying a bottle with food. Well it came up on this month’s vintage release. This wine comes from the emerging area of Lake Erie, North shore. Dark in color with a nice black berry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays beautiful, rich, bold black plums along with some nice cherry and a hint of mocha. On the medium length finish the wine displays some smooth tannins and acidity. This wine is nice and dry! and is is a smooth, elegant, complex wine. I would give it an 89 or so, which for the price is good. I’m not sure how long it will keep, and not sure how long it will last in the LCBO. On the back of the bottle it says 539 cases were made. GO GET SOME … NOW!

From the LCBO web site:
CREW Merlot 2016 — VINTAGES#: 310532
STYLE – Full-bodied & Smooth
For CREW, being a small family-owned and -operated winery is a point of considerable pride, and the effort and dedication shine through in their wines. This Merlot from the near-perfect 2016 vintage is ripe and savoury with superb complexity and is loaded with black plums, red and dark berry, cigar box, earth and spice. Tight and full with great poise, this will be ideal for hearty lamb stew or game meats such as bison burgers. (Vintages panel, March 2018) $17.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 15, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.7% Made in: Ontario, Canada By: Colchester Ridge Estate Winery Inc.Sugar Content:3 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry

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Castelli del Grevepesa Castelgreve Chianti Classico 2016

Dark in color with a nice cherry nose. On the mid palate the wine displays some lovely dark cherries. On the medium length finish the wine is nice and dry with smooth tannins and some nice oaky notes. This is a classic chianti classico! I would give it an 88 or so, which for the price is great. We paired it with lamb chops and it’s got enough going on to hold up to the lamb! Very nice, and has been consistent over a number of vinatges!

from the LCBO web site Check stock:
Castelli del Grevepesa Castelgreve Chianti Classico 2016 — VINTAGES#: 573485
STYLE – Medium-bodied & Fruity
Lots of red cherries, herbs, orange rind and cedar on the nose of this pretty Chianti Classico. Medium-bodied with fine tannins and a fresh finish. Drink now. Score – 90. (James Suckling, jamessuckling.com, Oct. 20, 2017) $17.00
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:September 1, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.6%Made in: Tuscany, Italy By: Castelli Del Grevepesa Sugar Content:2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry

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Rustenberg Chardonnay 2016

Slightly golden in color with a nice varietal apple/pear nose. On the mid palate this is a smooth well made chard, with apple and pear to match the nose. The wine is more of a gently oaked style with some more subtle vanilla coming through. On the medium length finish the wine has some nice creamyness to it, and it’s nice and dry. A super food friendly chard with some nice mouth grip.. I would give it an 88 or so … quite nice.

From the LCBO web site Check stock:
Rustenberg Chardonnay 2016 — VINTAGES#: 598631
STYLE – Full-bodied & Rich
Very enticing, with yellow apple, shortbread, macadamia nut and lemon curd flavors carried by fresh acidity and backed by judicious toast on the finish. Drink now through 2019. Score – 90. (James Molesworth, winespectator.com, June 30, 2018) $19.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:August 18, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.5% Made in: Stellenbosch, South Africa By: Rustenberg Wines Sugar Content:2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra Dry

From the winery’s web site:
Stellenbosch Chardonnay
Rustenberg is a well-known producer of high quality Chardonnays and the Stellenbosch Chardonnay embodies our house style.

A traditionally made, barrel fermented Chardonnay, the Rustenberg Stellenbosch Chardonnay is a combination of complexing factors from the vineyard, wild yeast and careful barrel age, aiming for balance and expression in each vintage.

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2014 Stratus Kabang Red

Kabang is a restaurant only brand for Stratus. We found it at the Keg, and decided to take a flyer on it … the price was quite reasonable. On the nose the wine displays some mild cherries … On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with lovely bold cherries coming through. This is a lovely wine … Smooth, elegant, food friendly and a perfect choice for the steak we had coming, a blue cheese filet … On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice smooth tannins and acidity. There’s even a hint of mocha there as well. I would give the wine an 88+. Yumm ….

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Rustenberg RM Nicholson 2016

Dark in color with a nice black berry nose. On the mid palate the wine is dominated by the flavors of the shiraz, black berries and almost blue berries. On the medium length finish the wine displays some nice smooth tannins and acidity. Not a bad wine, I’d give it an 87-88. We paired it with spaghetti and went fine.

from the LCBO web site:
Rustenberg RM Nicholson 2016 — VINTAGES#: 278390
STYLE – Full-bodied & Smooth
$17.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:June 23, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 14.5% Made in: Stellenbosch, South Africa By: Rustenberg Wines Sugar Content:3 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style:Full-bodied & Smooth Varietal:Shiraz/Merlot/Cabernet Description: This wine has long stood as an example of the refinement and quality to be found in South African red blends. Crafted from Shiraz, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, this was aged for 16 months in 20% new and 80% used American and French barrels. The used barrels included those seeing their second, third, fourth and fifth usage. You can expect impressive cassis and dark fruit with pepper spice accents. Perfect for lamb burgers.

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Rustenberg Stellenbosch Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Pale in color with a mild minerally nose. On the mid palate the wine matches the nose with some lovely crisp, dry minerality to match the nose. On the medium length finish the wine is super dry with some nice lively acidity. It’s got some nice food friendly mouth grip. I would give this wine an 88+. Very nice for the price …

from the LCBO web site Check stock:
Rustenberg Stellenbosch Sauvignon Blanc 2017 — VINTAGES#: 456020
STYLE – Aromatic & Flavourful
$14.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:July 21, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 13.7% Made in:Stellenbosch, South Africa By: Rustenberg Wines Sugar Content:2 g/L Sweetness Descriptor:XD – Extra Dry Style:Aromatic & Flavourful Varietal:Sauvignon Blanc Description: This is certified for sustainability and integrity and was sourced from west-facing slopes of Simonsberg Mountain, planted at some of the highest altitudes in Stellenbosch. At 550 metres, the grapes benefit from altitude but also from the cool ocean breezes that flow in from False Bay and Table Bay. These cooling influences allow for a crisp, fresh wine that characteristically offers impressive gooseberry, asparagus and passion fruit. Lively and refreshing with a spine of food-friendly acidity, this will be a fine choice for grilled shrimp.

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Arboleda Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

I last reviewed the 2014 and was thoroughly impressed, actually I would put it amongst the best Chilean cabs … This one is nice and dark in color with a nice dark berry nose. The mid palate spot on matches the nose with nice black cherries coming through. On the mid palate the wine is nice and dry, smooth, good tannins and acidity. You could easily close your eyes and imagine this being a California cab, which to my tastes is a complement … I would give this wine a solid -89 which for the price is an excellent deal. For the 2014 I went back and grabbed a number and they kept pretty well. I’ve bought a number again … Yumm!

From the LCBO web site Check stock:

Arboleda Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 — VINTAGES#: 606764
STYLE – Full-bodied & Firm
This cabernet reveals its origins with the refined texture of those tannins that demand lasagna. Score – 91. (Patricio Tapia, Descorchados, 2017)
$19.95
PRODUCT DETAILS
Release Date:July 21, 2018
Alcohol/Vol 14.0% Made in: Aconcagua Valley, Chile By: Vina Sena S.A.Sugar Content: 3 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: XD – Extra Dry Style: Full-bodied & Firm

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