WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR FEBRUARY 1, 2014
By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing email@example.com.
Creator of Canada's award-winning wine satire site at http://fauxvoixvincuisine.blogspot.com. My Internet compendium
"Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net" is a guide to thousands of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers and spirits, at www.deantudor.com since 1994. My LCBO 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 normally available for a re-tasting.
====?>>> ** BEST WINE VALUE OF THE RELEASE *UNDER* $20
McWilliam's Mount Pleasant Elizabeth Semillon 2006 Hunter Valley, +724492, $19.95: we've all been waiting for some older Hunter Valley semillons – here is what could be the first of many. A bit light in texture but redolent with beeswax and candied peel. Nicely aged, twist top, delightful sipper or food wine. Multiple Gold medalist. QPR: 92.
====?>>> ** BEST WINE VALUE OF THE RELEASE *OVER* $20
Mountadam Estate Chardonnay 2009 High Eden Valley, +333211, $24.95 retail.
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $20 or so.
1.Featherstone Black Sheep Riesling 2012 VQA Niagara, +80234, $16.95: a delight, with a long, long finish and Riesling MVC, 10% ABV, twist top. Food or sip. QPR: 89.
2.Tabali Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2012 Limari, +662999, $14.95: very grassy, goose-y, and herbaceous, 13.5% ABV, great first course wine. QPR: 89.
3.Roux Pere & Fils Les Murelles Chardonnay Bourgogne 2012, +156455, $17.95: another fine mid-priced value chardonnay at that tender price point. Typical MVC flavours, more on the apple/lemon side but longer length. QPR: 89.
4.Beni di Batasiolo Granee Gavi del Commune di Gavi 2012, +75168, $16.95: fresh, appealing food wine, with citric acid and green fruit, some depth and nuttiness, concentrated tones. 12.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $20 or so.
1.S. Balbo Crios Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 Unfined and Unfiltered Mendoza, +640979, $13.95: more on the herby side than on the jammy side, pretty good food wine. 14% ABV, twist top. QPR: 89.
2.Chateau Tanunda Grand Barossa Cabernet Sauvignon 2011, +357517, $19.95: packs a lot of value as a delicious Bordeaux-styled wine. 14% ABV, one of the few Oz wines still left under cork. Delicious flavours. QPR: 89.
3.Dandelion Vineyards Lionheart of the Barossa Shiraz 2011 Unfined and Unfiltered, +358127, $10.95 for 375 mL: Platinum medalist. Strong overt French tones, good value in a half-bottle, 14.5% ABV, twist top. QPR: 90.
4.Schild Estate Old Bush Vine GMS Grenache/Mourvedre/Shiraz 2011 Barossa, +108183, $19.95: old vine complexity shines through, good depth. 55% grenache, some jammy fruit. 14.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
5.Cathedral Cellar Triptych 2011 WO Western Cape, +53124, $16.95: good food wine with savouriness, longer finish, some oak tones from new French oak, 14.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
6.Chateau de Lafaurie-Monbadon 2010 Cotes de Bordeaux Castillon, +140012, $15.95: ripe, floral, sip or food. Harmonious balance. 14.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
7.Chateau Haut Methee 2009 Bordeaux, +356592, $15.95: another well-priced wine, brimming with textured fruit with the MVC Bordeaux tones. 13% ABV. Gold Medalist. QPR: 90.
8.Cave de Roquebrun La Grange des Combes Saint-Chinian-Roquebrun 2011, +155804, $15.95:
50 percent Sarah, 30 grenache, 20 mourvedre. Gold medalist. 14% ABV, good solid food wine. QPR: 89.
9.Montiverdi Atila Chianti Classico Riserva 2007, +344465, $19.95: excellent quality Chianti, valued for its MVC tones. 13% ABV. QPR: 89.
10.Villa Mora Montefalco Rosso Riserva 2006 Umbria, +357079, $19.95: intense fruit and tannins revealed under a whopping 15.5% ABV. Certainly a hidden gem, but not part of the current LCBO program. QPR: 89.
11.Ribota 2010 Vino de la Tierra de Castilla, +280628, $15.95: ripe and round, blueberries come to mind, fruity, long length, delicious at 14.5% ABV. Check it out. QPR: 89.
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.
2.Roland Tissier & Fils Sancerre 2012, +108514, $21.95.
3.Katnook Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 Coonawarra, +590471, $29.95.
4.Chateau Tour Saint Bonnet 2009 Medoc, +349282, $29.95.
5.Luca Bosio Barolo 2009, +365197, $33.95.
6.Folonari Nozzole La Forra Chianti Classico Riserva 2009, +362731, $23.95.