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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

March 19/11: LCBO Vintages TOP Releases: some notes

WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR MARCH 19, 2011
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing deantudor@deantudor.com.
Creator of Canada's award-winning wine satire site at http://fauxvoixvincuisine.blogspot.com. My
"Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net Compendium" is a guide to
thousands of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers
and spirits, at www.deantudor.com since 1995. My tastings are based on
MVC (Modal Varietal Character); ratings are QPR (Quality-to-Price
Ratio). Prices are LCBO retail. Only my top rated wines are here. NOTE:
The LCBO does NOT put out all of the wines of the release for wine
writers or product consultants. Corked wines are not available for re-
tasting.
 
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $20 or so.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
1. Clos du Bois Chardonnay 2009 North Coast: a steady restaurant wine,
balanced with flavours of tropicality, wood and citric finish. Sipper
of food wine. +124867, $18.95, QPR: 90.
2. Lone Kauri Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2009 Marlborough: great
expression, both ripe and unripe fruit, underbrush, herbs, and finish.
+138974, $14.95, QPR: 90.
3. Caves de la Tourangelle Grande Reserve Touraine 2009: Savvy value,
good depth and fine finish. +196733, $14.95, QPR: 89.
4. Studert-Prum Riesling Kabinett 2009 Mosel: good body, depth, well-
made off-dry. +970129, $18.95, QPR: 89.
 
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $20 or so.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
1. Kacaba Proprietor's Blend Cabernet 2005 VQA Niagara Escarpment: good
blend of both cabernets, merlot and syrah, 13% ABV. Well-tuned and
nicely aged. +223974, $143.95, QPR: 89.
2. Gnarly Head Gnarlier Head Sommer Vineyard Old Vine Zin 2006 Dry
Creek Valley: sweet on mid-palate, dry on finish. Loaded with
character. Whopping 15.5% ABV. +212795, $19.95, QPR: 90.
3. Columbia Crest Grand Estates Merlot 2006 Columbia Valley: a
restaurant wine, finely aged, ripe 13.5% ABV. +263418, $15.95, QPR: 89.
4. Chateau Bel Air 2008 Haut-Medoc: MVC decent Bordeaux with a dollop
of chocolate. Keep a year more. +199042, $16.95, QPR: 90.
5. Alfiere Rosso Merlot 2007 Friuli: tasty but tart finish needs food,
merlot complexity. 12.5% ABV. +204024, $16.95, QPR: 89.
6. Banfi Centine 2008 IGT Toscana: smooth, ready now, 13.5%. Affordable
SuperTuscan blend of sangiovese, cab sauv and merlot. +947440, $16.95,
QPR: 90.
7. Spiaggiole Morellino di Scansano 2008 Tuscany: very Italianate in
taste, affordable black and blue berries, long, long length after a
fruity palate. +203398, $15.95, QPR: 91.
8. Lealtanza Reserva Seleccion 2004 Rioja: and older treat, nicely
stewed fruit, 13.5% ABV. +208223, $17.95, QPR: 90.
9. Bod. Abanico Eternum Viti 2008 Toro: full and ripe, lots of vinous
activity on the palate, with complexity to be resolved on the finish.
+210963, $18.95, QPR: 90.
 
VALUE: "RESTAURANT READY" or "BRING YOUR OWN WINE BOTTLE" over $20
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Restaurants should consider offering these FINE VALUE wines at a $10
markup over retail; the wines are READY to enjoy right NOW. Consumers
should buy these wines to bring to restaurants with corkage programs.
 
1. Vina Mayor Reserva 2004 Ribera del Duero, +209155, $25.95.
2. Hamilton Russell Chardonnay 2009 WO Hemel-en-Aarde Valley South
Africa, +931006, $29.95.
3. Domaine de Riaux Pouilly-Fume 2009, +200063, $22.95.
4. Robert Mondavi Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Napa, +670463,
$134.95.
5. The Foundry Syrah 2005 WO Coastal Region South Africa, +613331,
$29.95.
6. La Crau de ma Mere Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2007, +941740, $46.95.
7. Terre Nere Brunello di Montalcino 2005, +208462, $34.95.
8. Sartori Amarone Della Valpolicella 2006, +85217, $37.95.
9. Arroyo Reserva 2005 Ribera del Duero, +215715, $20.95.

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