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Thursday, April 18, 2019

The April 4 2019 Event: Wines of Portugal Grand Tasting

The Date and Time:  Thursday April 4, 2019  2PM to 6 PM
The Event: Wines of Portugal Grand Tasting
The Venue: Artscape Daniels Launchpad, Queens Quay East
The Target Audience: media, trade, sommeliers, et al
The Availability/Catalogue: About 300 wines were poured, from 30 wineries (many looking for agents). Very few wines are actually landed here in Ontario.
The Quote/Background: The crowds were nicely spread out through the show, so it was just a matter of weaving in and out. Without a catalogue it was awkward for many tasters to get full particulars. Prices and availability were vague. I downloaded the program and printed off the catalogue portion: there were blank spaces where names of agents should have been.
The Wines: I only tasted selected red and white table wines; my time did not permit rose, ports and sparklers, and other assorted goodies. Prices were speculative.
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Quiz Wines & Spirits Piano DOC Reserva Red 2017    Airen
-Quiz Wines & Spirits Piano DOC Reserva White 2017    Airen
-Quinta Nova Pomares Moscatel Galego 2018 $19.95    Le Sommelier
-Quinta Nova Mirabilis Grande Reserva 2017 $88.95    Le Sommelier
-Quinta Nova Referencia Grande Reserva 2016 $114.95    Le Sommelier
-Quinta da Lapa Reserva 2017 Branco    United Stars
-Dona Maria Julio Bastos Amantis Reserva Branco Viognier 2015
-Casa Santos Lima Confidencial Reserva 2014     Majestic
-Casa Santos Lima Colossal Reserva 2016     Majestic
-Quinta de Chocapalha Reserva White 2016     Von Terra
-Wine & Soul Pintas Character 2016 Tinto old vineyards    Von Terra
-Sogrape Vinhos Casa Ferreirnha Planalto Reserva 2017 Branco    Authentic W & S
-Santos & Seixo Santos da Casa Reserva Douro White 2017
 
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Quiz Wines & Spirits Piano DOC White 2018    Airen
-Quiz Wines & Spirits Quintela Colheita White 2018    Airen
-Quinta Nova Pomares Branco 2018 $19.95   Le Sommelier
-Quinta Nova Grainha Reserva Branco 2017 $32.95   Le Sommelier
-Quinta Nova Grainha Reserva Tinto 2016 $32.95    Le Sommelier
-Quinta da Lapa Alvarinho 2018   United Stars
-Quinta da Lapa Nana 2018 Branco    United Stars
-Lua Cheia em Vinhas Velhas Branco 2018   The Vine Agency
-Lua Cheia em Vinhas Velhas Maria Papolla Loureiro/Alvarinho 2018   The Vine Agency
-Jose Maria da Fonseca Periquita Branco 2017    P Dandurand
-J. Portugal Ramos Loios 2018 Branco    Sylvestre
-Casa Santos Lima Passion of Portugal Reserva 2016  $10.95    Majestic
-Campolargo Branco 2016 Sercial   Groupe Soleil
-Wine & Soul Guru 2017 Branco    Von Terra
-Santos & Seixo Santos da Casa Reserva Alvarinho 2017
-Santa Vitoria Branco 2018
 
The Food: from Cyn's Catering – cold cuts, sausages (hot and spicy), cheeses, breads, sweet and savoury custards, hot cod croquettes, Portuguese empanadas of potatoes/seafood/beef, et al.
The Downside: I arrived two hours late, coming from a matinee concert. So I did not have sufficient time to taste as many wines as I had wanted to.
The Upside: there were some very fine wines in the show.
The Contact Person: chloe.benayoun@sopexa.com
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 87.
 

Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

The Event: Opening of Gallery 50 Photography Exhibit with a wine tasting hosted by Noble Estates.

 
The Date and Time: Thursday March 28, 2019  7:30 – 9:30 PM
The Event: Opening of Gallery 50 Photography Exhibit with a wine tasting hosted by Noble Estates.
The Venue:  50 Quebec Avenue.
The Target Audience: 32 local residents (including 5 guys).
The Availability/Catalogue: we tasted four southern Italian wines plus Prosecco from the Noble Estates portfolio, as presented by Joe Alberti (Private & Licensee Sales). The wines are available by consignment, and ranged from $27.95 Licensee to $49.95.
The Quote/Background: Joe Alberti led a wine tasting with a Powerpoint program, opening with the freshly poured Prosecco from Foss Marai. He detailed the locations of the grapes and wines used in southern Italy and led us through the tasting with stress on aromatics and palates.
The Wines:
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Foss Marai Millesimato Prosecco 2017 $27.99 Licensee [good bubbles and vintaged]
-Antonella Corda Cannonau di Sardegna 2016 $27.95 Licensee [grenache, higher acid]
-Donnachiara Taurasi Campania 2013 $49.95 Licensee [nicely evolved but still young, 1 year oak]
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Planeta Cerasuolo 2016 Sicily DOCG $27.99 Licensee [nero d'avola; chocolate&cherries]
-Planeta Etna Rosso 2016 Sicily $31.99 Licensee [nerello grape, elegant but edgy, food versatile]
 
The Food: Planeta olive oil, breads, crackers, sweet potato chips, salami
The Downside: the night went very quickly, and there was no time for the exhibits.
The Upside: great tasting wines, five was just about the right number.
The Contact Person: joea@nobleestates.com
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 89
 
 
Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

WORLD WINE WATCH TOP WINES AT VINTAGES: under $20 and over $20 for April 13, 2019

 
WORLD WINE WATCH TOP WINES AT VINTAGES:  under $20 and over $20 for April 13, 2019
 
By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing deantudor@deantudor.com. My "Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net", a guide to thousands of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers and spirits, has been at http://www.deantudor.com since 1994.
These notes for good wines available through the LCBO Vintages (on a bi-weekly basis)  can always be found at http://www.gothicepicures.blogspot.ca/ or at  http://www.deantudor.com
 
Scores are a combination of MVC (Modal Varietal Character, e.g. a Southern Rhone would taste like a Southern Rhone) and QPR (Quality/Price Ratio value in the marketplace above or below its price).
 
NOTE: The first report is based on my sampling of the wines chosen by the LCBO from this release for tasting. That presentation is about 50 different labels out of about 125 released every two weeks. Thus, my report will not be as voluminous as in the past and comes from a restricted database. I did not taste every one of the 50 wines, nor did I rate several of the wines I did sample because they did not seem to be of particularly good value.
 
NOTE: The second report (at the end) is a simple listing of  those wines that were NOT presented to me, and are given here simply as a record of  what sampling I could not do. I have left in the name of the agency in fairness to all.
 
REPORT #1 -- Under $20
 
Rose+552562    THREE OF HEARTS ROSÉ    VQA Niagara Peninsula    2018    $19.95     11.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
Fizz+171785   CAVE DE HOEN MAUSBERG BLANC DE BLANCS BRUT CRÉMANT D'ALSACE    Traditional method, AC, Alsace, France   $18.95  12% ABV, MVC/QPR: 91
Fizz+645309    KEW VINEYARDS ORGANIC RIESLING SPARKLING    VQA Ontario    2017    $19.95   
12% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
Fizz+536607    EMILIANA ORGANIC BRUT SPARKLING    Traditional method, DO Casablanca Valley, Chile    $19.95   MVC/QPR: 89
W+356873    FLAT ROCK GOOD KHARMA CHARDONNAY    VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment    2016    $16.95      13.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
W+232694    SANTA JULIA ORGANIC TORRONTÉS    Mendoza, Argentina    2018    $13.95     MVC/QPR:  89
W+203547    FROGPOND FARM ORGANIC CHARDONNAY    VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario    2017    $16.95      13% ABV, MVC/QPR:  87
W+288217    YALUMBA ORGANIC VIOGNIER     South Australia    2017    $16.95  14.5% ABV, MVC/QPR:  88
W+387787    CHÂTEAU LES HAUTS DE LAGARDE BLANC    AC Bordeaux, France    2018    $17.95   
MVC/QPR: 87
W+646794    ABBOTTS & DELAUNAY LES FLEURS SAUVAGES VIOGNIER    IGP Pays d'Oc    2017    $16.95     13% ABV, MVC/QPR: 87
W+628867    PG ZAUMAU TEMPRANILLO BLANCO    DOCa Rioja 2017 $18.95  MVC/QPR:  87
R+161398    LANDER-JENKINS CABERNET SAUVIGNON    California    2017    $19.95    MVC/QPR:  89
R+644393    GÉRARD BERTRAND NATURAE CABERNET SAUVIGNON    IGP Pays d'Oc, Languedoc, France    2018    $19.95  13%ABV,MVC/QPR:  89
R+646513    VIENI FOUNDER'S BLEND RESERVE    VQA Ontario    2016    $15.95     13% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+632638    FERNGROVE FRANKLAND RIVER CABERNET/MERLOT    Frankland River, Western Australia    2016    $16.95     14% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+163972    MOMO PINOT NOIR    Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand    2016    $19.95   
13.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+652289    GLENELLY ESTATE RESERVE RED BLEND    WO Stellenbosch    2011    $19.95   
14% ABV, MVC/QPR: 90
R+649582    DOMAINE PARDON CUVÉE DE L'ERMITAGE BEAUJOLAIS-VILLAGES    AC    2017    $16.95     13% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+645317    MAS DES TANNES ROUGE    IGP Pays d'Oc, Languedoc, France    2017    $16.95   
13.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+638312    FONTANAFREDDA LANGHE NEBBIOLO    DOC    2017    $19.95     13.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 90
R+644849    TERRE NATUZZI ROSSO    IGT Toscana        $13.95     12.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+631499    CALEM CURVA TINTO    DOC Douro    2016    $15.95      13% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+645788    L'OCA CIUCA CHIANTI    DOCG    2016    $14.95     12.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 87
R+638692    DOMAINE ST-JACQUES CÔTES DU RHONE    AC, Rhône, France    2017    $17.95   
15% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
 
Over $20
 
W+638437    SANTA EMA AMPLUS CHARDONNAY    DO Leyda Valley    2017    $21.95     13.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 90
W+735043    SERESIN SAUVIGNON BLANC    Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand    2016    $24.95      MVC/QPR: 88
W+633750    LAMOREAUX LANDING DRY RIESLING Estate bottled, Finger Lakes 2016    $24.95     12.9% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+941757 CAMIGLIANO BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO DOCG 2013 $60.95    MVC/QPR: 89
R+1560    FLAT ROCK GRAVITY PINOT NOIR    VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment    2015    $34.95    13% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+644872    PRIETO PARIENTE LA PROVINCIA    Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y León    2015    $24.95     14.9% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+297945    CHÂTEAU LAROSE-TRINTAUDON    Cru Bourgeois, AC Haut-Médoc    2009    $29.95     13.7% ABV, MVC/QPR: 90
R+636761    CHÂTEAU MAGONDEAU    AC Fronsac    2015    $22.95     14% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+437954    CHÂTEAU PIERRE DE MONTIGNAC    Cru Bourgeois, AC Médoc    2014    $24.95   
13% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+647065    CHÂTEAU SAINT HUBERT    AC Saint-Émilion Grand Cru Classé    2010    $34.95   
13.5% ABV, MVC/QPR: 89
R+643239    M. CHAPOUTIER BILA-HAUT OCCULTUM LAPIDEM    AC Côtes du Roussillon-Villages Latour-de-France    2016    $26.95    15% ABV, MVC/QPR: 88
R+382945    IL MOLINO DI GRACE RISERVA CHIANTI CLASSICO    DOCG    2014    $24.95  MVC/QPR:  89
=====================================================================
 
REPORT #2: The rest (i.e. NOT presented for the media tasting )
 
43281    Canada -- Ontario    FLAT ROCK RIESLING    VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment            750    $15.95    FLAT ROCK CELLARS    FLAT ROCK CELLARS
1578    Canada -- Ontario    FLAT ROCK TWISTED WHITE    VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment            750    $17.95    FLAT ROCK CELLARS    FLAT ROCK CELLARS
342436    USA -- California    BONTERRA CHARDONNAY    Mendocino County, California            750            ESCALADE WINE & SPIRITS
342428    USA -- California    BONTERRA CABERNET SAUVIGNON    California            750            ESCALADE WINE & SPIRITS
327452    United Kingdom -- Scotland    GLENMORANGIE SIGNET HIGHLAND SINGLE MALT SCOTCH WHISKY                750    $339.95        CHARTON HOBBS INC
415901    Canada -- Ontario    CAVE SPRING INDIAN SUMMER RIESLING    Select Late Harvest, VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario        2016    375    $24.95        CAVE SPRING CELLARS LTD.,
438200    Canada -- Ontario    WESTCOTT VIOLETTE SPARKLING    VQA Ontario        2017    750    $25.95        WESTCOTT VINEYARDS
369074    Luxembourg    BERNARD-MASSARD CUVÉE DE L'ÉCUSSON PINOT NOIR BRUT ROSÉ    Traditional method, Luxembourg            750    $19.95        UNIVINS AND SPIRITS CANADA INC.
485276    Canada -- Ontario    TZAFONA CELLARS COLD CLIMATE UNOAKED CHARDONNAY KP    VQA Niagara Peninsula        2015    750    $22.95        TRAJECTORY BEVERAGE PARTNERS
539130    USA -- California    FAR NIENTE CHARDONNAY    Napa Valley        2017    750    $99.95        NOBLE ESTATES WINES & SPIRITS INC.
556365    South Africa -- Stellenbosch    L'AVENIR FAR & NEAR CHENIN BLANC    WO Stellenbosch        2018    750    $15.95        SELECT WINE MERCHANTS INC.
382200    South Africa -- Stellenbosch    GLENELLY ESTATE RESERVE CHARDONNAY    WO Stellenbosch        2016    750    $18.95        H.H.D. IMPORTS
315119    France -- Alsace    JEAN GEILER PINOT GRIS    AC Alsace        2016    750    $19.95        LAMPRECHT INTERNATIONAL
91371    France -- Bordeaux    CHÂTEAU DE ROCHEMORIN BLANC    AC Pessac-Léognan    André Lurton    2015    750    $31.95        TRAJECTORY BEVERAGE PARTNERS
468751    France -- Burgundy    LOUIS JADOT CHABLIS    AC        2016    750    $31.95        HALPERN ENTERPRISES
299867    France -- Burgundy    MAISON ROCHE DE BELLENE VIEILLES VIGNES BOURGOGNE CHARDONNAY    AC        2016    750    $23.95        NICHOLAS PEARCE WINES INC
525154    France -- Loire    JOSEPH MELLOT LA CHATELLENIE SANCERRE    AC        2017    750    $29.95        LIFFORD WINE & SPIRITS
254375    France -- Midi    JEAN PERRIER & FILS CUVÉE GASTRONOMIE ROUSSETTE DE SAVOIE    AP        2017    750    $21.95        DACIA FELIX
370098    France -- Midi    PAUL MAS ESTATE VIOGNIER    IGP Pays d'Oc        2017    750    $13.95        AUTHENTIC WINE & SPIRITS MERCHANTS
672345    France    HENRI BOURGEOIS PETIT BOURGEOIS SAUVIGNON BLANC    Vin de France        2017    750    $16.95        CHARTON HOBBS INC
200097    Italy -- Veneto    S. CRISTINA MASSONI LUGANA    DOC    Azienda Zenato    2017    750    $23.95        JOSEPH CIPELLI WINES & SPIRITS
413039    Italy -- Venezie    CORTE GIACOBBE PINOT GRIGIO    DOC delle Venezie    Dal Cero    2017    750    $17.95        THE DOCHAS COMPANY INC.
127332    Canada -- Ontario    THE FOREIGN AFFAIR PINOT NOIR    VQA Niagara Peninsula        2013    750    $34.95        CORBY SPIRIT AND WINE LIMITED
515270    Canada -- Ontario    KEW BARREL AGED GAMAY NOIR    VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment        2016    750    $17.95        KEW VINEYARDS ESTATE WINERY LTD
493981    Canada -- Ontario    TZAFONA CELLARS COLD CLIMATE CABERNET SAUVIGNON KP    VQA Niagara Peninsula        2014    750    $29.95        TRAJECTORY BEVERAGE PARTNERS
266551    USA -- California    ANTICA MOUNTAIN SELECT CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Atlas Peak, Napa Valley    Antinori    2016    750    $68.95        HALPERN ENTERPRISES
906420    USA -- California    HESS COLLECTION ALLOMI CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Napa Valley        2016    750    $39.95        LIFFORD WINE & SPIRITS
483321    USA -- California    NOBLE VINES 337 CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Lodi        2016    750    $19.95        SELECT WINE MERCHANTS INC.
238261    USA -- California    FAUST CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Napa Valley        2016    750    $59.95        ROGERS & COMPANY
548297    USA -- California    PICKETT CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Napa Valley    Araujo Estate Wines    2015    750    $97.95        HALPERN ENTERPRISES
473744    USA -- California    PEDRONCELLI MOTHER CLONE ZINFANDEL    Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County        2015    750    $26.95        JOHN GIBSON AGENCIES
982413    USA -- California    RIDGE LYTTON SPRINGS    Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County        2016    750    $74.95        ROGERS & COMPANY
909499    USA -- Oregon    ARGYLE PINOT NOIR    Willamette Valley        2016    750    $34.95        BARRIQUE WINE IMPORTS LTD.
494518    Argentina -- Mendoza    MANOS NEGRAS ATREVIDA MALBEC    Mendoza    Manos Negras    2016    750    $17.95        NOBLE ESTATES WINES & SPIRITS INC.
439166    Chile -- Colchagua Valley    CARMEN GRAN RESERVA CARMENÈRE    El Peñasco Vineyard, Apalta, DO Colchagua Valley        2017    750    $16.95        SELECT WINE MERCHANTS INC.
439356    Chile -- Colchagua Valley    PRIMUS CARMENÈRE    Apalta, Colchagua Valley        2017    750    $19.95        ROGERS & COMPANY
146407    Chile -- San Antonio Valley    MATETIC CORRALILLO SYRAH    DO San Antonio Valley        2015    750    $26.95        H.H.D. IMPORTS
389221    Chile -- Central Valley    ECHEVERRIA LIMITED EDITION CABERNET SAUVIGNON    DO Central Valley        2014    750    $29.95        LIFFORD WINE & SPIRITS
396481    Australia -- South Australia    ZONTE'S FOOTSTEP CHOCOLATE FACTORY SHIRAZ    McLaren Vale, South Australia        2016    750    $18.95        CRU WINE MERCHANTS
251165    South Africa -- Stellenbosch    THE BEAN COFFEE PINOTAGE    WO Western Cape    Roos Family Vineyards    2017    750    $15.95        VERGINA IMPORT INTERNATIONAL INC.
276477    France -- Beaujolais    GEORGES DUBOEUF DOMAINE MONT CHAVY MORGON    AC        2016    750    $20.95        PHILIPPE DANDURAND WINES LTD.
408153    France -- Burgundy    MAISON CHANZY BOURGOGNE PINOT NOIR    AC        2017    750    $25.95        TASTEVIN SELECTIONS
283184    France -- Rhône    DOMAINE ROCHE CAIRANNE CÔTES DU RHÔNE-VILLAGES    AP        2015    750    $22.95        SIGNATURE WINES & SPIRITS
717900    France -- Southwest    CHÂTEAU D'AYDIE ODÉ D'AYDIE MADIRAN    AP    Pierre Laplace    2015    750    $23.95        ROUGE ET BLANC LTD
548719    Italy -- Piedmont    GIANNI GAGLIARDO BAROLO    DOCG        2014    750    $58.95        WINE LOVERS AGENCY INC.
713628    Italy -- Piedmont    BERSANO NIRVASCO BAROLO    DOCG        2014    750    $34.95        BARRIQUE WINE IMPORTS LTD.
177295    Italy -- Puglia    RIVERA IL FALCONE RISERVA CASTEL DEL MONTE    DOCG        2012    750    $24.95        S. SCHIRALLI AGENCIES LTD.,
969428    Italy -- Tuscany    ROCCA DELLE MACÌE CAMPO MACCIONE MORELLINO DI SCANSANO    DOCG        2017    750    $17.95        VIN VINO WINE MERCHANTS INC.
429142    Italy -- Umbria    SIGNAE SAGRANTINO DI MONTEFALCO    DOCG        2011    750    $28.95        DIONYSUS WINES & SPIRITS LTD.
324137    Italy -- Veneto    MASI RISERVA DI COSTASERA AMARONE DELLA VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO    DOCG        2013    750    $69.95        AUTHENTIC WINE & SPIRITS MERCHANTS
527077    Italy -- Venezie    TOMMASI PALANCA    IGT Rosso delle Venezie        2016    750    $16.95        UNIVINS AND SPIRITS CANADA INC.
606921    Italy -- Venezie    MASI GRANDARELLA REFOSCO    IGT Refosco delle Venezie        2014    750    $28.95        AUTHENTIC WINE & SPIRITS MERCHANTS
439729    Spain -- Castilla y León    LAGAR DE ROBLA PREMIUM    Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y León    Viños de Arganza    2012    750    $14.85        TERRA FINE WINES
674564    Spain -- Rioja    PALACIOS REMONDO LA VENDIMIA    DOCa Rioja        2017    750    $18.95        WOODMAN WINES & SPIRITS
642496    Spain -- Rioja    BARÓN DE LEY GRAN RESERVA    DOCa Rioja        2012    750    $29.95        NOBLE ESTATES WINES & SPIRITS INC.
471854    Spain -- Rioja    RIOJA VEGA CRIANZA    DOCa Rioja        2015    750    $16.95        AZUREAU WINE AGENCY
461913    Italy -- Piedmont    GIULIO COCCHI STORICO VERMOUTH DI TORINO    Italy            750    $27.95        AZUREAU WINE AGENCY
197202    Portugal -- Douro    WARRE'S WARRIOR FINEST RESERVE PORT    DOP            750    $19.95        DIONYSUS WINES & SPIRITS LTD.
437467    Spain -- Jerez    WILLIAMS & HUMBERT WALNUT BROWN MEDIUM SWEET SHERRY    DO            750    $14.95        PHILIPPE DANDURAND WINES LTD.
581942    Greece    KECHRIS KECHRIBARI RETSINA    Greece            500    $8.95        THE KOLONAKI GROUP INC
635516    Chile -- Bío Bío Valley    CABALLO LOCO GRAND CRU BRUT NATURE SPARKLING    Traditional method, Bío Bío Valley    Viña Valdivieso    2014    750    $44.95    WINE LOVERS AGENCY INC.    WINE LOVERS AGENCY INC.
635516    Chile -- Bío Bío Valley    CABALLO LOCO GRAND CRU BRUT NATURE SPARKLING    Traditional method, Bío Bío Valley    Viña Valdivieso    2014    750    $44.95        WINE LOVERS AGENCY INC.
613729    USA -- California    THE CALLING DUTTON RANCH CHARDONNAY    Russian River Valley, Sonoma County        2016    750    $45.00        TRAJECTORY BEVERAGE PARTNERS
613786    USA -- California    RAMEY CHARDONNAY    Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County        2014    750    $51.00        LIFFORD WINE & SPIRITS
482984    Argentina -- Mendoza    EL ENEMIGO CHARDONNAY    Mendoza        2016    750    $29.95        TRIALTO WINE GROUP LTD.
633859    France -- Bordeaux    CHÂTEAU SUDUIRAUT LIONS DE SUDUIRAUT    AC Sauternes        2014    375    $23.95        SYLVESTRE WINES & SPIRITS INC.
628479    Italy -- Tuscany    CA' MARCANDA VISTAMARE    IGP Toscana    Gaja    2017    750    $68.95        STEM WINE GROUP
966655    Italy -- Veneto    ANSELMI CAPITEL CROCE    IGT Veneto        2015    750    $26.95        NOBLE ESTATES WINES & SPIRITS INC.
629485    Spain -- Rias Baixas    LA TRUCHA ALBARIÑO    DO Rías Baixas        2017    750    $29.95        PHILIP MIRABELLI FINE WINES
613661    USA -- California    THE CALLING PINOT NOIR    Russian River Valley, Sonoma County        2016    750    $61.00        TRAJECTORY BEVERAGE PARTNERS
377242    USA -- California    FAUST CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Napa Valley        2016    1500    $139.95        ROGERS & COMPANY
633933    USA -- Washington    CLOUDLIFT HALCYON CABERNET SAUVIGNON    Columbia Valley        2013    750    $34.95        LOYAL IMPORTS
633073    France -- Bordeaux    MARQUIS DE MONS    AC Margaux        2014    750    $39.95        LIFFORD WINE & SPIRITS
700922    France -- Rhône    LE VIEUX DONJON CHÂTEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE    AC        2016    750    $67.95        MIH SELECTIONS
638320    Italy -- Piedmont    GIANNI GAGLIARDO DA BATIE NEBBIOLO    DOC Langhe        2017    750    $24.95        WINE LOVERS AGENCY INC.

Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Saturday, April 6, 2019

The Event: April 2 -- Winemakers Tasting: old vines and aged wines – Wineries of Niagara-on-the-Lake

The Date and Time: Tuesday April 2, 2019   6Pm to 8PM
The Event: Winemakers Tasting: old vines and aged wines – Wineries of Niagara-on-the-Lake
The Venue: George Brown College Chef's School King Street
The Target Audience: wine writers and bloggers, sommeliers
The Availability/Catalogue: only recent vintages are available for purchase
The Quote/Background: This was a showcase by Inniskillin, Reif, and Strewn wineries in NOTL, showing off back vintage and old vine table wines that reflect the terroir and quality of NOTL wines. It was a preliminary to the annual celebration "DIG OUR ROOTS" which promotes the NOTL appellation, history and culture. This is held in NOTL on April 12 – 14 this year, with multiple events at the various wineries (not just these three). Bruce Wallner MS did the introduction and moderation for the winemakers Nicholas Gizuk (Asst Winemaker Inniskillin), Roberto Di Domenico (Reif) and Joe Will (Strewn). Each presented some table wines (chardonnay, cabernet, meritage) and icewines.
The Wines: Eight table wines were presented to about two dozen attendees at a sit-down seminar. 
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Strewn Winery 2016 Chardonnay Terroir Canadian Oak VQA Niagara Peninsula, old vines, four barrel batch, 14.8% ABV
-Reif Estate Winery 2001 Chardonnay Reserve VQA Niagara Peninsula, ripe/rich/redolent of wood lanolin, 13% ABV
-Inniskillin Wines 2016 Reserve Merlot VQA Niagara Peninsula, velvety smooth, 14% ABV
-Reif Estate Winery 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve VQA Niagara River, very Old World, fantastic aged nose, 13% ABV – my FAVE of the tasting
-Strewn Winery 2015 The LIMITED Cabernet Sauvignon (Home Farm) VQA NOTL, blended cab sauvignon and franc for a wine club purchase (LIMITED), unfiltered,  13.3% ABV
-Reif Estate Winery 2002 Meritage VQA Niagara Peninsula, rich fumes and depth, 13.5% ABV
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Inniskillin Wines 2017 Montague Vineyard Chardonnay VQA Four Mile Creek, old vines, French oak, 13% ABV
-Strewn Winery 2012 Strewn Three Terroir VQA Niagara Peninsula, Bordeaux-styled merlot/cabsauv/cabfr, 14.4% ABV
 
The Food: I could not stay for the food
The Downside: I had to leave early for another engagement, so I missed the icewines.
The Upside: A chance to re-connect with the winemakers.
The Contact Person: Laura Vertucci <laura@wineriesofniagaraonthelake.com>
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 90

Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Thursday, April 4, 2019

The Event: A tasting of 16 Mile Cellar Vineyards and Winery, led by new winemaker Morgan Juniper with the participation of co-owner Susan Barnacal.

The Date and Time: Tuesday, March 5, 2019  5:30PM - 8PM
The Event: A tasting of 16 Mile Cellar Vineyards and Winery, led by new winemaker Morgan Juniper with the participation of co-owner Susan Barnacal.
The Venue: Yonge and Davisville
The Target Audience: Toronto wine writers
The Availability/Catalogue: the new wines will be available at the winery's Open House Saturday May 4.
The Quote/Background: The winery was founded in 2010, and is located on 16 Mile Creek, which is 16 miles from the Falls themselves. They only make Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, mostly from their 12 planted organic acres. Their first winemaker was Thomas Bachelder. "Our goal is to produce small quantities of hand-picked, hand-made and distinctive wines each year". Currently, the winery offers 10 wines, all in different vintages. There are three tiers: the Rebel line at $22.95, mostly meant for restaurants, the mid-priced Civility Chardonnay and Incivility Pinot Noir series at $29.95, and a top tier Tenacity Pinot Noir at $50. There is also a Rose made from bought-in riesling, chardonnay and pinot noir grapes. Total production thus far is about 1,000 cases a year. They use a mix of old and new (10%) French oak. Some of their wines are lightly filtered, and some not at all. More details are at www.16milecellar.com
The Wines: Five wines were poured.
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-16 Mile Cellar Civility Chardonnay 2015 VQA Creek Shores, 12.5% $29.95  80 cases
-16 Mile Cellar Incivility Pinot Noir 2014 Unfiltered VQA Niagara Peninsula 13% $34.95  170 cases
-16 Mile Cellar Tenacity Pinot Noir Unfiltered 2015 VQA Creek Shores, 13%  $50  179 cases
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-16 Mile Cellar Rebel Chardonnay 2016 VQA Niagara Peninsula 13.5%  $22.95   200 cases
 
 
INFANCY –
 
-16 Mile cellar "Morgan Juniper" Pinot Noir 2018 VQA Creek Shores 2 barrels to be bottled in late 2020. This is Morgan's first wine at 16 Cellars; it was mild and nervous but should be awesome after some bottle age. A very capable wine.
 
The Food: none
The Contact Person: morgan@16milecellar.com
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 89
 
Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Monday, April 1, 2019

* FOOD BOOK OF THE MONTH! * Oklava by Selin Kiazim

OKLAVA (Interlink Books, 240 pages, ISBN 978-1-56656-028-3 $35 USD hardbound) is by Selin Kiazim, who, after various head positions in the restaurant business, opened Oklava in Shoreditch (London UK) in 2015. Kiazim draws on her Turkish-Cypriot heritage to devise a pattern of food for her restaurant (Oklava translates as "rolling pin"). These are also Turkish-Cypriot home-cooked meals, arranged here by course from snacks, salads, savouries, meat, seafood, veggies and grains, and desserts. She's also got some drink preps plus dressings and dips and assorted items. She was born in north London with its Turkish and Greek Cypriots, but spent a lot of time on Cyprus itself with family. There is a lot of crossover between Greek and Turkish food, and the cognate words reflect this. The major difference is that Turks are generally Muslim and hence do not eat pork but rather lamb. The book could have been improved if it also used more metric in the recipes, or at least had a metric conversion chart.
Audience and level of use:  those seeking a unique cuisine.
Some interesting or unusual recipes/facts: chicken livers with garlic, rosemary, cumin, and date butter on toast; salad of baharat-roast duck with feta, sumac onions, poached figs and salted walnuts; chili-garlic glazed chicken with za'atar crumbs; veal shish and  onion salad flatbread with charred sivri biber relish and yogurt.
The downside to this book: there are no pork recipes in the Meat chapter, but the lamb preps can be used by substituting pork.
The upside to this book: lots of memoir-like material
Quality/Price Rating: 92.
 
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
 

Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Saturday, March 30, 2019

* DRINK BOOK OF THE MONTH! * The Art & Craft of Coffee Cocktails by Jason Clark

 
1.THE ART & CRAFT OF COFFEE COCKTAILS (Ryland Peters & Small, 2018, 208 pages, ISBN 978-1-78879-043-7 $19.95 USD hardbound) is by Jason Clark,an itinerant bartender (and coffee lover) for many years. Here he gives us over 75 preps for mixing coffee and liquor. He has notes on selecting coffees, brewing coffee for cocktails, extractions by espresso or cold brew or French press. He's also got some good notes on how to maximize pod coffee usage. He divides his cocktails up into shake, hot, built, stirred and thrown, and blended. Excellent photographs of single purpose beverage glasses and cups. Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements.
Audience and level of use: bartenders, coffee lovers
Some interesting or unusual recipes/facts: tiramisu ice cream; chocolate coffee ganache;
cinnamon toast crunch white Russian; B52 hot shot; Mexican blazer; caffeine carnival; cafe negroni; coffee bourbon float; super stout.
The downside to this book: I really really wanted more preps!
The upside to this book: there's a concluding section on homemade coffee products such as coffee syrup, coffee liqueur, coffee ice, coffee soda, coffee foam, and others.
Quality/Price Rating: 92.
 
Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Friday, March 29, 2019

SOME NEW BEVERAGE SAMPLES SENT TO ME FOR TASTING REVIEWS THIS MONTH –

SOME NEW BEVERAGE SAMPLES SENT TO ME FOR TASTING REVIEWS THIS MONTH –
 
Abeille-Fabre Chateau Mont-Redon Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2015, +959627, $45.95 Vintages: a bargain wine for its price (up only two bucks since the 2011 vintage), but still too young to consume unless you double-decant and drink it over a few days. Half of the wine was made in barrels, the other half in vats. A selection of the better barrels is made into a single blend after 18 months, and stored for four to six months before release. It will be well-aged  after another 10 years. Of the 13 permitted varieties, grenache, syrah, and mourvedre are dominant, with cinsault, counoise, muscardin, and vaccarese added. Still tight but plenty of black fruits and spices. 14.5% ABV.  Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Luigi Bosca Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva 2015 Mendoza, +128629, $19.95 Vintages March 2019: black fruit dominates this substantial wine. Made from older vines (many are 50 years old). Aging in French and US oak barrels for 14 months, still needs time to resolve despite 4 years of age. 14.2% ABV, a hefty thick wine that dominates. Best for carnivores? You decide. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Bonnet & Associates Chateau Vrai Caillou 2016 Bordeaux Superieur, +348292, $15.95 March 16 Vintages: Mostly merlot (55%) from the "Entre deux Mers" region which excels in quantities of value Bordeaux. Aged a year in both tanks and barrels, and could age a bit more in your cellar (or do a double-decant and wait an hour). Red fruit dominates, edged by some plumminess. Food ideas basically suggest lamb roast and cheeses. 12.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 88.5 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures
 
Gerard Bertrand Grand Terroir Corbieres 2015 $18.95 +394288 Vintages: In this Terroir Corbieres, Bertrand uses carbonic maceration for the syrah and traditional fermentation for the grenache and mourvedre. It is an appealing  Rhonish G-S-M, with the blended wine aging in wood for eight months before bottling. Very firm with some fruit on the full finish. 14% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Baron de Hoen Cremant d'Alsace Brut Mausberg Blanc de Blancs NV, +171785 Vintages, $17.95: Limestone pebbles are responsible for the higher acid of the pinot auxerrois and pinot blanc grapes used in the blend here.  Traditional Method is used, of course, without any ML. It is a pretty wine, with a bit of fruit, but is better as an aperitif or with first courses. My wife and I enjoyed this bottle with popcorn and a movie at home. It's sustainable agriculture  in the region, and with a huge production of some 600,000 bottles (50K cases), there is an opportunity to keep the price down. This is a re-order by Vintages. 12.5% ABV, 3.8 g/L TA and 10 g/L RS. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Henry of Pelham Cabernet-Merlot Estate 2015 VQA Short Hills Bench, +395855 Vintages, $24.95: both cabernets franc (4%) and sauvignon (50%) are used in this Bordeaux-styled blend which comes across as a mid-Atlantic  version of Cali/Bordeaux New World and Old World. It is still in its youth at 3 years of age, and it would be a shame to consume it this young. You could do what I did: open it and drink it over a couple of weeks, exposing it to air gently or speeding up the process by double-triple decanting. You will get several different wines out of one bottle over the course of time. Extended maceration in stainless, followed by French and US oak (40% new) for 18 months.  Currently, you could match it with heavy meats. 13.5% ABV on label. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Baron de Hoen Gewurztraminer Reserve 2017 Alsace, +377721 Vintages $19.95: from around Beblenheim area, cool fermentation with typical gewurz tones of spices, lychee, roses. 12.5% ABV, and RS of 15 g/L (off-dry). Best as  aperitif, or with fragrant cheeses, spicy foods. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Chateau des Charmes Pinot Noir 2017 Estate Grown &  Bottled VQA NOTL, +454967, $16.95 LCBO: A lovely young wine, with some forest floor (mushrooms, earth) to complement the red fruit (strawberries are hinted by the winemaker). Estate grown and bottled. Good written notes on the back label are spot on. Just under subtle oaking, with a moderate intensity of medium flavours. Ready to drink now. Cork closure, 12.5% ABV. Try with lamb burgers.  Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
  
 
Chateau des Charmes Pinot Noir 2016 Paul Bosc Estate Vineyard VQA St.David's Bench,
+332858, $38.95 at winery, online, boutiques: Quite a powerful wine, lots of stylish Burgundian forest floor (mushrooms, earth) to complement the red berry fruit. It was last produced in 2014 (some years were declassified). Needs  some time, maybe three more years. 13% ABV. It will also show better with food such as an Asian salmon preps or veal or lamb. Cork closure. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Sartori di Verona "Corte Bra" Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2011 DOCG, $49.95, +225540 Vintages March: this wine has aged nicely (7 years now; initially 4 years in small oak) and becomes more of a bargain at this price  level. 15.5% ABV puts it in the bigger leagues. Black fruit dominates the nose and palate, lots of body, lush and luscious in a Juicy Lucy style, and a long finish. Unfiltered. We had it with aged sheep and water buffalo cheeses from  Monforte (Ontario). Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Buena Vista Winery Chateau Buena Vista Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 Napa Valley, $59.95 +539106 Vintages March 16: a top of the line Napa cab with its richness, denseness and opulence from Oak Knoll and St. Helena vineyards. After 28 months in French oak (35% new) it was racked and bottled unfiltered. Tons of black fruit and mocha tones with spices suggestive of cardamom – and a long, long finish. Still needs time, a cellar keeper. Do a double decant or leave it open for a week to get a taste of its potential. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Berger-Rive Manoir de Mercey Rully En Rosey Red 2015 #635623, $32.95 Vintages: From the Cote Chalonnaise, this is an old vines pinot noir Burgundy that is pretty consistent from year to year (and they've kept the price down too). After fermentation it goes into wood (about a quarter of the volume is put into new oak) for a year's aging. Typical ripe red fruit with vanilla wood, but also soft which appeals to many North American tastes. Should be cellared another year. Smart buy at this price. 12.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Henry of Pelham Chardonnay Speck Family Reserve 2017 VQA Short Hills Bench +616466 Vintages April $29.95: Grapes come from their oldest estate vineyards (1984 onward), hand-picked. Barrel fermented in French oak with a portion in 3000L foudres, and then barrel aged for 8 – 10 months in a mix of new and older barrels. This continues the tradition of Burgundian elegance. Expect some ripeness, balance of oaking and fruit, integrated style in place.  Wood integration produces some creaminess in the finish. 13.3% ABV, cork closure. Definitely needs another year – or more – in bottle in order to bring out the nuances. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Henry of Pelham Pinot Noir Estate 2017 VQA Short Hills Bench Niagara, +268391 Vintages, $24.95: Here is a deft Burgundian-character pinot noir wine, with cherry-berry tones, some toast, mildly opulent style, not totally cool climate at all. Fermented in stainless and aged in "European" oak (30% new) for 10 months. Ready in a year or two. Dependable. And also available in Denmark, Hungary, Japan and USA. 13.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Obalo Rioja 2017, +644856 Vintages March 30, $17.95: here is a fresh and fruity 100% tempranillo that has only been aged (with ML fermentation) for 3 months in diverse cooperage of French oak (50% new) – so it is not a Crianza. The company (founded in 2006) does make a Crianza and a Reserva, plus a Rose. And the small vineyards are about 40 – 90 years old, showing some depth through age and grace. It's a spicy cherry-berry complex of  aromatics with some finish inviting pasta and rice dishes, tapas and cheeses. 14% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Champagne Drappier Brut Nature Pinot Noir Zero Dosage NV, +179275 Vintages March 30: $59.95: Uses first-pressed juice, malolactic fermentation, no filtering, and then aged 30 months or more sur lattes. The highlight of course: there is no dosage. Aromas of citric fruit, tartness at first but mellowing out on the mid-palate with some herbal green complexity. Finish is structurally tight but brisk and refreshing. Good as a preprandial aperitif or with a first course. A Champagne to age in your cellar: it will only get better as it matures. Very affordable. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
 
Gerard Bertrand Naturae – Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 IGP Pays d'Oc +644393 April 13 Vintages $19.95: This one leads off the introduction of organic and vegan wines in Ontario by Gerard Bertrand. It is exceedingly fresh, with no oaking (it's the 2018 vintage). The new range is "naturae", and as little manipulation as possible is employed. The wine has been racked before malo begins, and then racked again. The acid/sweetness/tannin balance is loaded with dense black fruits (cassis, blueberry, black raspberry). It'll need some more time bottle, so try it at Christmas. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Camigliano Brunello di Montalcino 2014 +941757 April 13 Vintages $62.95: The 2014 I tasted was 100% sangiovese grosso, aged two years in French and Slavonian oak barrels.
Fresh black fruit dominates (blueberry, black cherry), forest floor showing, but tannins still need resolution. A cellar keeper, or try if over several days after exposure to air. Best with cheese and game. 14% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 

Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

WORLD WINE WATCH -- special March 16 2019 hiatus edition...

WORLD WINE WATCH  -- special March 16 2019 hiatus edition...
 
Below I have posted two sets of notes. The first is a collection of my tasting notes from bottles I have been sent. These bottles tend to rate a bit higher than my LCBO lab notes because I've more time to taste and re-taste what I have opened in the nice relaxed atmosphere of my home. My lab notes are one-shot sips of 100 or more table red and white wines, perfect for ADHD quick assessments. Yeah, it is a hard life.
 
The second set of notes come from my speculation on the value of the wines I would have tasted in the lab, such speculation being derived from tasting earlier vintages and knowing that the wine is reliable. Thus, I have NOT tasted the latest LCBO offering of this product. But I can be reasonably sure that it would be GOOD, BETTER or BEST, and so I have rated the wines that way within those broad categories. I would expect them to be consistent and within one or two points of an actual tasting of that harvest year.
 
See ALL of my notes at www.deantudor.com
 
 
The LCBO will let me be back in action for the April 13 release.
 
1.SOME NEW BEVERAGE SAMPLES SENT TO ME FOR TASTING REVIEWS THIS MONTH –
 
Abeille-Fabre Chateau Mont-Redon Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2015, +959627, $45.95 Vintages: a bargain wine for its price (up only two bucks since the 2011 vintage), but still too young to consume unless you double-decant and drink it over a few days. Half of the wine was made in barrels, the other half in vats. A selection of the better barrels is made into a single blend after 18 months, and stored for four to six months before release. It will be well-aged after another 10 years. Of the 13 permitted varieties, grenache, syrah, and mourvedre are dominant, with cinsault, counoise, muscardin, and vaccarese added. Still tight but plenty of black fruits and spices. 14.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Luigi Bosca Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva 2015 Mendoza, +128629, $19.95 Vintages March 2019: black fruit dominates this substantial wine. Made from older vines (many are 50 years old). Ageing in French and US oak barrels for 14 months, still needs time to resolve despite 4 years of age. 14.2% ABV, a hefty thick wine that dominates. Best for carnivores? You decide. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Bonnet & Associates Chateau Vrai Caillou 2016 Bordeaux Superieur, +348292, $15.95 March 16 Vintages: Mostly merlot (55%) from the "Entre deux Mers" region which excels in quantities of value Bordeaux. Aged a year in both tanks and barrels, and could age a bit more in your cellar (or do a double-decant and wait an hour). Red fruit dominates, edged by some plumminess. Food ideas basically suggest lamb roast and cheeses. 12.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 88.5 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Gerard Bertrand Grand Terroir Corbieres 2015 $18.95 +394288 Vintages: In this Terroir Corbieres, Bertrand uses carbonic maceration for the syrah and traditional fermentation for the grenache and mourvedre. It is an appealing Rhonish G-S-M, with the blended wine aging in wood for eight months before bottling. Very firm with some fruit on the full finish. 14% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Baron de Hoen Cremant d'Alsace Brut Mausberg Blanc de Blancs NV, +171785 Vintages, $17.95: Limestone pebbles are responsible for the higher acid of the pinot auxerrois and pinot blanc grapes used in the blend here. Traditional Method is used, of course, without any ML. It is a pretty wine, with a bit of fruit, but is better as an aperitif or with first courses. My wife and I enjoyed this bottle with popcorn and a movie at home. It's sustainable agriculture in the region, and with a huge production of some 600,000 bottles (50K cases), there is an opportunity to keep the price down. This is a re-order by Vintages. 12.5% ABV, 3.8 g/L TA and 10 g/L RS. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Henry of Pelham Cabernet-Merlot Estate 2015 VQA Short Hills Bench, +395855 Vintages, $24.95: both cabernets franc (4%) and sauvignon (50%) are used in this Bordeaux-styled blend which comes across as a mid-Atlantic version of Cali/Bordeaux New World and Old World. It is still in its youth at 3 years of age, and it would be a shame to consume it this young. You could do what I did: open it and drink it over a couple of weeks, exposing it to air gently or speeding up the process by double-triple decanting. You will get several different wines out of one bottle over the course of time. Extended maceration in stainless, followed by French and US oak (40% new) for 18 months. Currently, you could match it with heavy meats. 13.5% ABV on label. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Baron de Hoen Gewurztraminer Reserve 2017 Alsace, +377721 Vintages $19.95: from around Beblenheim area, cool fermentation with typical gewurz tones of spices, lychee, roses. 12.5% ABV, and RS of 15 g/L (off-dry). Best as aperitif, or with fragrant cheeses, spicy foods. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Chateau des Charmes Pinot Noir 2017 Estate Grown &  Bottled VQA NOTL, +454967, $16.95 LCBO: A lovely young wine, with some forest floor (mushrooms, earth) to complement the red fruit (strawberries are hinted by the winemaker). Estate grown and bottled. Good written notes on the back label are spot on. Just under subtle oaking, with a moderate intensity of medium flavours. Ready to drink now. Cork closure, 12.5% ABV. Try with lamb burgers. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
  
Chateau des Charmes Pinot Noir 2016 Paul Bosc Estate Vineyard VQA St.David's Bench,+332858, $38.95 at winery, online, boutiques: Quite a powerful wine, lots of stylish Burgundian forest floor (mushrooms, earth) to complement the red berry fruit. It was last produced in 2014 (some years were declassified). Needs some time, maybe three more years. 13% ABV. It will also show better with food such as an Asian salmon preps or veal or lamb. Cork closure. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Sartori di Verona "Corte Bra" Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2011 DOCG, $49.95, +225540 Vintages March: this wine has aged nicely (7 years now; initially 4 years in small oak) and becomes more of a bargain at this price level. 15.5% ABV puts it in the bigger leagues. Black fruit dominates the nose and palate, lots of body, lush and luscious in a Juicy Lucy style, and a long finish. Unfiltered. We had it with aged sheep and water buffalo cheeses from Monforte (Ontario). Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Buena Vista Winery Chateau Buena Vista Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 Napa Valley, $59.95 +539106 Vintages March 16: a top of the line Napa cab with its richness, denseness and opulence from Oak Knoll and St. Helena vineyards. After 28 months in French oak (35% new) it was racked and bottled unfiltered. Tons of black fruit and mocha tones with spices suggestive of cardamom – and a long, long finish. Still needs time, a cellar keeper. Do a double decant or leave it open for a week to get a taste of its potential. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Berger-Rive Manoir de Mercey Rully En Rosey Red 2015 #635623, $32.95 Vintages: From the Cote Chalonnaise, this is an old vines pinot noir Burgundy that is pretty consistent from year to year (and they've kept the price down too). After fermentation it goes into wood (about a quarter of the volume is put into new oak) for a year's aging. Typical ripe red fruit with vanilla wood, but also soft which appeals to many North American tastes. Should be cellared another year. Smart buy at this price. 12.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Henry of Pelham Chardonnay Speck Family Reserve 2017 VQA Short Hills Bench +616466 Vintages April $29.95: Grapes come from their oldest estate vineyards (1984 onward), hand-picked. Barrel fermented in French oak with a portion in 3000L foudres, and then barrel aged for 8 – 10 months in a mix of new and older barrels. This continues the tradition of Burgundian elegance. Expect some ripeness, balance of oaking and fruit, integrated style in place. Wood integration produces some creaminess in the finish. 13.3% ABV, cork closure. Definitely needs another year – or more – in bottle in order to bring out the nuances. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Henry of Pelham Pinot Noir Estate 2017 VQA Short Hills Bench Niagara, +268391 Vintages March 30, $24.95: Here is a deft Burgundian-character pinot noir wine, with cherry-berry tones, some toast, mildly opulent style, not totally cool climate at all. Fermented in stainless and aged in "European" oak (30% new) for 10 months. Ready in a year or two. Dependable. And also available in Denmark, Hungary, Japan and USA. 13.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Obalo Rioja 2017, +644856 Vintages March 30, $17.95: here is a fresh and fruity 100% tempranillo that has only been aged (with ML fermentation) for 3 months in diverse cooperage of French oak (50% new) – so it is not a Crianza. The company (founded in 2006) does make a Crianza and a Reserva, plus a Rose. And the small vineyards are about 40 – 90 years old, showing some depth through age and grace. It's a spicy cherry-berry complex of aromatics with some finish inviting pasta and rice dishes, tapas and cheeses. 14% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Champagne Drappier Brut Nature Pinot Noir Zero Dosage NV, +179275 Vintages March 30, $59.95: Uses first-pressed juice, malolactic fermentation, no filtering, and then aged 30 months or more sur lattes. The highlight of course: there is no dosage. Aromas of citric fruit, tartness at first but mellowing out on the mid-palate with some herbal green complexity. Finish is structurally tight but brisk and refreshing. Good as a preprandial aperitif or with a first course. A Champagne to age in your cellar: it will only get better as it matures. Very affordable. Quality/Price rating is 92 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Gerard Bertrand Naturae – Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 IGP Pays d'Oc +644393 April 13 Vintages $19.95: This one leads off the introduction of organic and vegan wines in Ontario by Gerard Bertrand. It is exceedingly fresh, with no oaking (it's the 2018 vintage). The new range is "naturae", and as little manipulation as possible is employed. The wine has been racked before malo begins, and then racked again. The acid/sweetness/tannin balance is loaded with dense black fruits (cassis, blueberry, black raspberry). It'll need some more time bottle, so try it at Christmas. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
Camigliano Brunello di Montalcino 2014 +941757 April 13 Vintages $62.95: The 2014 I tasted was 100% sangiovese grosso, aged two years in French and Slavonian oak barrels.
Fresh black fruit dominates (blueberry, black cherry), forest floor showing, but tannins still need resolution. A cellar keeper, or try if over several days after exposure to air. Best with cheese and game. 14% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
 
2.The BEST, BETTER, and GOOD notes for March 16 release (based on previous vintages I have tasted; I have not tasted these current Mar 16 wines) ...
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (90+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
+373985    GÉRARD BERTRAND CÔTE DES ROSES ROSÉ    AP Languedoc $18.95
+499152     ALVEAR "PEDRO XIMENEZ DE ANADA 2015  Montilla Morilles  $24.95 375 ml
+68239    ANTECH EXPRESSION BRUT CRÉMANT DE LIMOUX    Traditional method, AC, Languedoc, France Georges & Roger Antech.    2015  $19.95   
+566026    CAVE SPRING CSV RIESLING Cave Spring Vineyard, VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment    2016    $29.95
+142398    WAKEFIELD JARAMAN CABERNET SAUVIGNON Coonawarra/Clare Valley, South Australia 2015 $24.95
+297317    XAVIER CÔTES DU RHÔNE    AP 2016     $17.95
+976662    FAUSTINO I GRAN RESERVA    DOCa Rioja Bodegas Faustino Martinez 2005 $35.95
 
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
+552562     HENRY OF PELHAM THREE OF HEARTS ROSE 2018 VQA  $19.95 
+243592    LADIES WHO SHOOT THEIR LUNCH WILD FERMENT SHIRAZ    Victoria    Fowles Wine 2016    $34.95
+731620    BAROSSA VALLEY ESTATE E&E BLACK PEPPER SHIRAZ    Limited release, Barossa Valley, South Australia 2014  $89.95   
 
 
*** GOOD -- Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
+350900    ROBERT OATLEY SIGNATURE SERIES CHARDONNAY    Margaret River, Western Australia 2016    $19.95
+353086    CASAS DEL BOSQUE GRAN RESERVA CABERNET SAUVIGNON Maipo Valley 2017 $24.95
+642173    TORRES FLORALIS MOSCATEL ORO    Spain 500 mL  $16.95

Chimo! www.deantudor.com
AND http://gothicepicures.blogspot.com
AND https://twitter.com/gothicepicures

Dean Tudor, Ryerson University Journalism Professor Emeritus
Treasurer, Wine Writers' Circle of Canada http://winewriterscircle.ca
Look it up and you'll remember it; screw it up and you'll never forget it.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

The Event: Australian Wine Winter Trade Tasting 2019 Toronto

The Date and Time:  Tuesday, February 26, 2019   1 - 4PM
The Event: Australian Wine Winter Trade Tasting 2019 Toronto
The Venue: The Great Hall, Queen St West
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: a smart looking booklet arranged by agent tables with a special one for the seminar wines (Sommelier Choices), with RRP prices and email addresses. Unfortunately, no pens were available...I loaned out one of mine, never got it back.
The Quote/Background: Thirty regions are repped here, with 250 wines available for tasting from 75 wineries. Wow...
The Wines:  I did not taste every wine. I folded in the seminar wine tastings. Prices are retail unless otherwise stated. Most of the wines are only available through the agent (as listed).
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Henschke Giles Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir 2016 $80 Licensee Breakthru Beverage
-BK Wines Swaby Piccadilly Valley Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2016 $49.95
-Pewsey Vale The Contours Eden Valley Riesling 2004 Breakthru Beverage
-Tolpuddle Vineyard Tasmania Pinot Noir 2017 $75  Lifford
-Yangara High Sands McLaren Val Grenache 2015 $155  Breakthru Beverage
-Penfolds Bin 128 Coonawarra Shiraz 2016 $49.99 Mark Anthony
-Clarendon Hills Domaine Clarendon BDX McLaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2016 $79.95 Breakthru Beverage
-Clonakilla Shiraz Viognier 2016 $109.95 Alto Vino
-Standish The Relic Shiraz Viognier $159.90 Alto Vino
-Domaine Naturaliste Artus Margaret River Chardonnay 2017 $69.95 Authentic
-Domaine Naturaliste Morus Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 $89.95 Authentic
-Peter Lehmann Stonewall South Australia Barossa Valley Shiraz 2012 $90 P Dandurand
-Glaetzer Amon-Ra Barossa Valley Shiraz 2016 $84.95 Vine Agency
-Pepper Tree Estate Block 21A Wrattonbully Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 $64.95 Azureau
-Ten Minutes by Tractor Estate Mornington Peninsula Chardonnay 2017 $53.95 Grape Brands
-Ten Minutes by Tractor McCutcheon Mornington Peninsula Chardonnay 2017 $79.95 Grape Brands
-DogRidge MVP McLaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 $73.95 Licensee Le Sommelier 
-Voyager Estate Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 $69.95 Rogers
-Golding Wines Rocco Adelaide Hills Shiraz 2014 $57.99 Noble Estates
-Golding Wines Francis John Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir 2014 $57.99 Noble Estates
-Pikes Wines Pike & Joyce Vue du Nord Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir 2017 $53.99  Noble Estate
-Artisan Tasmania Chardonnay 2017 $77.99  Noble Estates
-Artisan Tasmania Pinot Noir 2017 $77.99  Noble Estates
-Torbreck The Factor Barossa Valley Shiraz 2015 $164.99 Noble Estates
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Turkey Flat Vineyards Barossa Valley Shiraz 2016 $59.95 Noble Estates
-Torbreck Hillside Vineyard Barossa Valley Grenache 2016 $106.99 Noble Estates
-Voyager Estate Margaret River Chardonnay 2016 $39.95 Rogers
-Voyager Estate Margaret River Shiraz 2015 $37.95 Rogers
-DogRidge MVP McLaren Vale Shiraz 2014 $73. 5 Licensee Le Sommelier 
-RedHeads Wine Blue Belle Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2017 $27.15 Select Wines
-Tyrrell's Wines Winemaker's Selection Vat 1 Hunter Valley Semillon 2013 $61.95 Select
-Tyrrell's Wines HVD Single Vineyard Hunter Valley Semillon 2013 $42.95 Select
-Tyrrell's Wines Hunter Valley Chardonnay 2013 $61.95 Select
-Wakefield St Andrews Clare Valley Margaret River Chardonnay 2016 $34.95 Profile
-Glaetzer Wallace Barossa Valley Shiraz Grenache 2016 $33.95 Vine Agency
-Soumah of Yarra Valley Chardonnay 2018 $27.95 Gradwell
-Brokenwood Hunter Valley Shiraz 2016 $54.99 Lifford
-Domaine Naturaliste Floris Margaret River Chardonnay 2017 $24.95 Authentic
-Shaw + Smith Adelaide Hills Riesling 2018 $45 Lifford
-Shaw + Smith M3 Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2015 $45 Lifford
-Giant Steps Wombat Creek Vineyard Yarra Valley Chardonnay 2017 $59.80 Alto Vino
-d'Arenberg The Laughing Magpie McLaren Vale Shiraz Viognier 2014 $29.95 Churchill
-Brash Higgins CHN McLaren Vale Chenin Blanc 2017 $42.95  Living Vine
-Mac Forbes Coldstream Yarra Valley Pinot Noir 2015  $61.95 You Drink Wine
-Ten Minutes by Tractor Wallis Mornington Peninsula Chardonnay 2016 $79.95 Grape Brands
-Ten Minutes by Tractor 10X Mornington Peninsula Chardonnay 2018 $36.95 Grape Brands
-Dodgy Bros Juxtaposed Old Vines McLaren Vale Grenache 2017 $41.95Licensee Le Sommelier
-Vasse Felix Heytesbury Margaret River Chardonnay 2017 $100Licensee Breathru Beverage
-Penfolds Bin 389 South Australia Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz 2016 $99.95 Mark Anthony
-Penfolds Bin 407 South Australia Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 $99.95 Mark Anthony
-Coldstream Hills Yarra Valley Chardonnay 2017  $25.51 Mark Anthony
-Wolf Blass Black Label Barossa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz Malbec 2012 $99.95 Mark Anthony
-Two Hands Bella's Garden Barossa Shiraz 2016 $61.95 Breakthru Beverage
-Clarendon Hills Astralis McLaren Vale Syrah 2014 $449.95  Breakthru Beverage
-Jasper Hill Georgia's Paddock 2015 $99.95 Alto Vino
-Bindi Block 5 Pinot 2016 $152.85 Alto Vino
-Giant Steps Applejack Pinot 2017  $58.80 Alto Vino
-Kay's Block 6 2016 $103.70  Alto Vino
-Grosset Polish Hill Riesling 2017  $54.75  Alto Vino
-By Farr Pinot Noir 2016 $100 Alto Vino
-Wirra Wirra RSW McLaren Vale Shiraz 2016 $59.95 Michael Andrew Brands
 
*** GOOD -- Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Ochota Barrels Green Room McLaren Vale Grenache Syrah 2017 $46.95  Living Vine
-Irrewarra Pinot 2016  $71.15 Alto Vino
 
The Food: cheese boards and charcuterie boards from Cheese Boutique, along with breads and crackers. Plus four kinds of sliders: veggie, chicken, roast beef, and ham/cheese.
The Downside: The place was packed! still, there was lots of room to manoeuvre about because there was space between tables. One major drawback: it was terribly dark upstairs and terribly bright downstairs, thus hard to read the catalogue.
The Upside: a really great opportunity to see where Oz wines are today.
The Contact Person: canada@wineaustralia.com
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 91
 
Chimo! www.deantudor.com

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

The Event: Taste Ontario – Toronto trade show

The Date and Time: Monday February 25 2019  11AM to 4PM
The Event: Taste Ontario – Toronto trade show
The Venue: ROM
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: the catalogue was a model – wines and license contacts were listed by region with full data (vintage year, licensee and retail prices0, with enough space for tasting notes.
The Quote/Background: the media writers were in the Glass Room on the 4th floor where we had advance time and some sit-down table space to write up our scores.
The Wines: About 175 wines were available; I did not taste them all. ABVs are used. The first price is licensee. CSPCs are listed when the wine is available through the LCBO. The rated wines are listed randomly within each category of BEST, BETTER and GOOD.
 
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
 
Winery  Wine VQA Appellation    Vintage Vol/Btl Alc/Vol    LCBO# UPC# Licensee Price Retail
 
Southbrook Vineyards    2016 Triomphe Chardonnay     Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml     12.6    172338    621605402145     $20.90      $24.95
Southbrook Vineyards    2017 Wild Ferment Chardonnay    Niagara Escarpment    2017    750ml     13    644625    621605483137     $30.80      $35.00
Tawse Winery    Pet-Nat    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml    13    N/A    670459010068     $21.06      $24.95
Tawse Winery    Estate Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2013    750ml    12.5    N/A    670459006702     $32.04      $38.15
2027 Cellars     StoneBridge Vineyard Chardonnay    Four Mile Creek    2017    750ml     13    N/A    N/A     $19.95      N/A
13th Street Winery    Blanc de Blanc    Creek Shores    2016    750ml     12.5    N/A         $25.12      $29.95
13th Street Winery    Chardonnay Viscek Vineyard    Creek Shores    2017    750ml     12.5    N/A         $25.12      $29.95
Two Sisters Vineyards    Unoaked Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml    13.5    N/A    832651001453     $21.54      N/A
Trius     Trius Brut    Niagara Peninsula    NV    750ml    12    284539    48162001299     $25.12      $29.95
Trius     Trius Brut Rose    Niagara Peninsula    NV    750ml    12    184309    48162012691     $27.44      $32.95
Trius     Trius Barrel Fermented Chardonnay     Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml    13.1    251470    48162004429     $16.67      $19.95
Stratus     Stratus White    Niagara-On-The-Lake    2015    750ml     12.9    660704
         $32.08      $38.20
Queenston Mile Vineyard    Chardonnay    St.David's Bench    2016    750ml     13    N/A         $29.38      $35.00
Cave Spring Cellars    Riesling Adam Steps    Beamsville Bench    2017    750ml     10.5    901211    7-79334-01211-8     $20.90      $24.95
Cave Spring Cellars    Riesling CSV    Beamsville Bench    2016    750ml     12    566026    7-79334-66026-5     $25.12      $29.95
Cave Spring Cellars    Pinot Noir Dolomite    Niagara Escarpment    2017    750ml     12.5    504608    7-79334-04608-3     $20.90      $24.95
Charles Baker     Ivan Vineyard Riesling     Twenty Mile Bench     2017    750ml     11    N/A         $22.80      $27.00
Charles Baker     Picone Vineyard Riesling     Vinemount Ridge     2015    750ml     10.5    N/A         $31.80      $37.20
Megalomaniac    Reserve Cabernet Merlot    Twenty Mile Bench    2016    750ml     14    N/A    699187005160     $59.95      $59.95
Chateau des Charmes Wines    Brut Sparkling    Niagara-on-the-Lake    NV    750ml     12.5    207944    776409100008     $21.74      $25.95
Cloudsley Cellars    Pinot Noir, Homestead Vineyard    Twenty Mile Bench    2015    750ml     12.5    N/A    627843870654     $41.84      $50.00
Cloudsley Cellars    Pinot Noir, Glen Elgin Vineyard    Twenty Mile Bench    2015    750ml     12.5    N/A    627843870661     $41.84      $50.00
Leaning Post Wines    The Fifty - Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     13    N/A    628055332312     $18.57      $22.20
Icellars Estate Winery    Reserve Red    Niagara-on-the-Lake    2017    750ml     14    N/A    657664339542     $25.16      $30.00
Icellars Estate Winery    Merlot    Niagara-on-the-Lake    2017    750ml     14.5    N/A    657664339481     $37.82      $45.00
Henry of Pelham Winery    Estate Chardonnay    Short Hills Bench    2016    750ml     13.5    268342    1. 7-79376-20121-1     $18.53      $21.95
Henry of Pelham Winery    Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine Estate Blanc de Blanc Carte Blanche    Niagara Peninsula    2013    750ml     11.9    315200    779376465057     $37.78      $44.95
Hidden Bench Estate Winery    Estate Chardonnay    Beamsville Bench    2017    750ml     13    68817    878102002013     $25.12      $29.92
Hidden Bench Estate Winery    Terroir Caché - Red Meritage    Beamsville Bench    2015    750ml     13.9    505610    878102004017     $37.78      $44.95
 
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
 
Winery  Wine VQA Appellation    Vintage Vol/Btl Alc/Vol    LCBO# UPC# Licensee Price Retail
 
Hidden Bench Estate Winery    Estate Riesling    Beamsville Bench    2017    750ml     11    183491    878102003027     $20.90      $24.95
Henry of Pelham Winery    Three of Hearts Rosé    Niagara Peninsula    2018    750ml     11.5    552562    779376496013     $16.67      $19.95
Flat Rock Cellars    Chardonnay    Twenty Mile Bench    2017    750ml     13    286278    881860300482     $16.68      $19.95
Flat Rock Cellars    Riesling    Twenty Mile Bench    2016    750ml     11    43281    881860100303     $14.99      $17.95
Icellars Estate Winery    Arinna    Niagara-on-the-Lake    2016    750ml     14.5    N/A    657664339450     $35.29      $42.00
Domaine Queylus    Chardonnay Tradition    Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml     13    N/A    896131000923     $23.43      $27.95
Domaine Queylus    Pinot Noir Réserve du Domaine    Niagara Peninsula    2014    750ml     13    N/A    896131000213     $37.83      $45.00
Keint-he Winery and Vineyards    Portage Chardonnay    PEC    2014    750ml     12.7    2015.2605    8517000275     $20.94      $25.00
Creekside Estate Winery    Iconoclast Syrah    St.David's Bench    2016    750ml     13    VINTAGES# 471797         $20.94      $25.00
Creekside Estate Winery    Iconoclast Sauvignon Blanc Semillon    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     12    VINTAGES# 520627         $19.25      $23.00
Cloudsley Cellars    Pinot Noir, Niagara    Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml     12    N/A    627843870678     $20.74      $25.00
Meldville Wines    Chardonnay     Lincoln Lakeshore    2017    750ml     13    N/A         $16.71      $20.00
Meldville Wines    Syrah    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     13    N/A         $22.63      $27.00
Chateau des Charmes Wines    Barrel Fermented Chardonnay, Estate Grown & Bottled    Niagara-on-the-Lake    2016    750ml     13.4    81653    776409816534     $12.44      $14.95
Muscedere Vineyards Estate Winery    Merlot    Lake Erie North Shore    2016    750ml     13.2    N/A    628696160909     $16.89      $20.20
Muscedere Vineyards Estate Winery    Meritage    Lake Erie North Shore    2016    750ml     13.5    N/A    628696160800     $25.32      $30.20
North 42 Degrees Estate Winery    Riesling     Lake Erie North Shore    2016    750ml     11.5    N/A         $14.99      $17.95
Pelee Island Winery    Meritage Vinedressers    Lake Erie North Shore    2016    750ml     13.5    N/A    317933     n/a      $24.95
Charles Baker     B-Side Riesling    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     10.3    N/A         $18.57      $22.00
Queenston Mile Vineyard    Mile High Sparkling    Ontario    2017    750ml     12.5    N/A         $29.38      $35.00
Redstone Winery    Redfoot Vineyard Viognier    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     13    N/A    670459009406     $16.84      $20.15
Redstone Winery    Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2013    750ml     13    N/A    670459006801     $21.54      $24.90
Reif Estate Winery    Chenin Blanc    Niagara River    2017    750ml     13    N/A    779320000419     $17.95      $20.15
Reif Estate Winery    Riesling Reserve    Niagara River    2017    750ml     13    N/A    779320001249     $17.95      $20.15
Reif Estate Winery    Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve    Niagara River    2016    750ml     13.5    N/A    779320001102     $31.45      $35.15
Southbrook Vineyards    2017 Heather's Home Vineyard Riesling    Vinemount Ridge    2017    750ml     11.1    650135    621605 453093     $19.21      $22.95
The Good Earth Vineyard & Winery     Viognier    Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml    13.7    N/A    N/A     $20.90      $24.95
The Good Earth Vineyard & Winery     Merlot    Beamsville Bench    2016    750ml    13.9    N/A    N/A     $29.34      $34.95
Vineland Estates Winery    Unoaked Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml    12    669374    7-79327-12001-1     $12.45      $14.95
Vineland Estates Winery    Elevation St Urban Riesling    Niagara Escarpment    2017    750ml    8.5    38117    7-79327-19427-2     $16.67      $19.95
Vieni Estates Wine and Spirits    Appassimento Classic Method Private Reserve    Vinemount Ridge    2013    750ml    16    N/A         $54.95      $59.95
Two Sisters Vineyards    Merlot    Niagara River    2013    750ml    14    N/A    832651001378     $40.15      $52.80
Bachelder    Bachelder Mineralite Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     13.5    N/A    185729000378     $19.97      N/A
Calamus Estate Winery    Meritage    Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml     13    N/A    693550001254     $16.67      $19.95
Colio Estate Wines    Lily Rosé Sparkling    Ontario    NV    750ml     12    536565    779373618517     $14.99      $17.95
Colio Estate Wines    Bricklayer's Reward Riesling    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     10.5    644765    779373321219     $15.83      $18.95
Cooper's Hawk Vineyards    Cabernet Merlot Reserve    Lake Erie North Shore    2016    750ml     12.5    328013    853698001169     $16.00      $18.95
 
 
 
*** GOOD -- Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
 
Winery  Wine VQA Appellation    Vintage Vol/Btl Alc/Vol    LCBO# UPC# Licensee Price Retail
 
Lakeview Wine Co.     Lakeview Cellars Viognier     Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     13    N/A    874537110149     $16.67      $19.95
Cooper's Hawk Vineyards    Unoaked Chardonnay    Ontario    2016    750ml     12.5    453167    853698001053     $12.62      $14.95
Cloudsley Cellars    Pinot Noir, Twenty Mile Bech    Twenty Mile Bench    2015    750ml     12.5    N/A    627843870647     $29.18      $35.00
Chateau des Charmes Wines    Cabernet Merlot, Estate Grown & Bottled    Niagara-on-the-Lake    2017    750ml     13.1    556951    776409000292     $13.30      $15.95
Chateau des Charmes Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon, Estate Grown & Bottled    Niagara-on-the-Lake    2017    750ml     12.6    370320    776409000155     $13.30      $15.95
Megalomaniac    Narcissist Reserve-Riesling    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     11    67587    699187000455     $14.14      $18.95
Megalomaniac    My Way Chardonnay    Niagara Peninsula    2017    750ml     13    142646    699187000165     $20.90      $24.95
Icellars Estate Winery    Syrah    Vinemount Ridge    2017    750ml     13.5    N/A    657664339474     $33.60      $40.00
North 42 Degrees Estate Winery    Cabernet Sauvignon     Lake Erie North Shore    2016    750ml     13.5    N/A         $16.67      $19.95
Redstone Winery    Redstone Estate Syrah        2015    750ml         N/A         $33.73      $40.15
Casa-Dea Estates Winery    Chardonnay Reserve    Prince Edward County     2016    750ml     12.7    546812    898150000038     $22.58      $26.95
Calamus Estate Winery    Riesling Off Dry    Niagara Peninsula    2015    750ml     11    N/A    693550001285     $13.30      $15.95
Sue-Ann Staff Estate Winery    2016 Robert's Block Riesling    Niagara Peninsula    2016    750ml     11.1    231415    91238 00002 9     $21.78      $26.00
Adamo Estate Winery    Lepp David's Vineyard Riesling    Niagara Lakeshore    2017    750ml     12    N/A    628451509424     $16.67      $19.95
Trail Estate Winery    Wild-Ferment Chardonnay    Prince Edward County    2017    750ml    11.7    N/A    N/A     $29.38      $35.00
2027 Cellars     Wismer Vineyard -FoxCroft Block - Riesling    Twenty Mile Bench    2017    750ml     10    N/A    N/A     $16.95      N/A
Vieni Estates Wine and Spirits    Semi Dry Riesling     Vinemount Ridge    2017    750ml    9.5    N/A         $16.18      $16.95
 
The Food: enormous sandwiches were provided to the media, along with a chick pea and carrot salad and a green salad (spinach) plus a charcuterie/cheese board, with cookies and fruit for dessert, and coffee.
The Downside: overall, I found some of the wines very inviting, but most were too young. Restaurants and private clients may want to store them awhile.
The Upside: the media room...THANK YOU WMAO!! For a comparison of wine quality and prices, look at my previous postings for VQA at the end of February going back several years.
The Contact Person: info@wmao.com
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 93
 
Chimo! www.deantudor.com