WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR MAY 30, 2015
By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing firstname.lastname@example.org. Creator of Canada's award-winning wine satire site at http://fauxvoixvincuisine.blogspot.com. My Internet compendium "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 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. It is getting more difficult to endorse wines under $20 for the simple reason that the LCBO does not release many of them into the Vintages program, ones that can be deemed to be worthy of your consideration. So I will now just ADD some "under $25" suggestions, along with point values.
====?>>> ** BEST WINE VALUE OF THE RELEASE *UNDER* $20
Columbia Crest Grand Estates Chardonnay 2012 Columbia Valley Washington, +366542, $17.95: creamy oak, soft tannins, cork closure, 13.5% ABV, well-framed and lingers. Yum. QPR: 90.
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $25: [not many this time]
1.Hidden Bench Estate Riesling 2013 VQA Beamsville Bench, +183491, $23.95. QPR: 90.
2.Maison Roche de Bellene Vieilles Vignes Bourgogne Chardonnay 2012, +299867, $20.95. QPR: 90
3.Marnier-Lapostolle Chateau de Sancerre Sancerre 2013, +340893, $24.95. QPR: 90.
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $25:
1.Seven Falls Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 Wahluke Slope Washington, +360222, $19.95: excellently positioned, very good and big wine with typical cabby MVC cassis and some wood. Cork closure, 14% ABV. QPR: 89.
2.Laura Hartwig Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 Colchagua Valley, +727495, $17.95: another cabby, but in Euro style. Complexity needs more time. Barrel-aged French oak for one year. 14% ABV
3.Montes Limited Selection Pinot Noir 2012 Casablanca Valley, +37937, $14.95: it is not too often you see an under-valued wine at the LCBO, but here is one the mark-up guys overlooked. Massive cherries and wood, 14% ABV. Twist top. Yum. QPR: 89.
4.O'Leary Walker Pinot Noir 2012 Adelaide Hills Australia, +408419, $24.95. QPR: 90.
5.Rustenberg Merlot 2010 WO Stellenbosch, +404194, $19.95: mint, mocha, black currants, 14% ABV, twist top. Good aging. QPR: 89.
6.Famille Perrin Les Christins Vacqueyras 2012, +973453, $23.95. QPR: 90.
7.Domaine Bellavista La Cuvee d'Ava Cotes du Roussillon 2011, +383398, $15.95: this wine does not need a dose of MSG, it already has it in its mourvedre/syrah/grenache frame. Good depth and well-priced. 14.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
8.San Michele a Torri Chianti Colli Fiorentini 2013, +900258, $16.95: from one of the rarer regions in Chianti, a svelte light and polite Chianti at a decent price. 13% ABV. QPT: 88.
9.Mula Velha Premium Tinto 2012 Lisboa, +409250, $15.95: juicy, North American appeal, very aromatic. 13.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
10.VSL G Garnacha 2011 Madrid, +132266, $18.95: this "garnacha of the month" is organic but also 15% ABV. Very nice expression of the G spot: a sweet and spicy song. QPR: 89.
11.Bodegas Campina Sabor Real Vinas Centenarias Tempranillo 2009 Toro, +244772, $15.95: good value for an aged robust wine, made from vines planted in 1895. QPR: 89.
12.P Dardenne Vina Mayor Reserva 2009 Ribera del Duero, +209155, $24.95. QPR: 89
VALUE: "RESTAURANT READY" or "BRING YOUR OWN WINE BOTTLE" over $25 RETAIL
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.Oldenburg Chardonnay 2012 WO Stellenbosch, +374645, $26.95 retail.
2.Domaines Schlumberger Kessler Gewurztraminer 2010 Alsace Grand Cru, +307694, $33.95.
3.Lucien Muzard & Fils Les Meix Chavaux Meursault 2013, +407072, $58.95.
4.Segla 2006 Margaux, +359810, $53.95.
5.Pierre Amadieu Romane-Machotte Gigondas 2012, +17400, $27.95.
6.Badia a Coltibuono Riserva Chianti Classico 2009, +683474, $38.95.
7.Marchesi Torrigiani Guidaccio 2008 IGT Toscana, +674499, $48.95.
8.Poggio Bonelli Poggiassai 2010, +85365, $32.95.