WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR AUGUST 22, 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
Chateau des Moines Menodin 2010 Bordeaux Superieur, +424259, $14.95: showing some oak tones (eleve en futs de chene), this is an extremely flexible all-purpose Bordeaux showing some yum and MVC flavours. 13.5% ABV. Gold medalist. Bargain price. Well worth buying a case. QPR: 92.
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $25:
1.Southbrook Triomphe Chardonnay 2013 VQA Niagara, +172338, $22.95. QPR: 90.
2.Rutherford Ranch Chardonnay 2013 Napa Valley, +136382, $22.95. QPR: 90.
3.Man Vintners Free-Run Steen Chenin Blanc 2014 WO Coastal Region SA, +126847, $13.95: some off-dry texture on the mid-palate suggests fruitiness, great summer sipper at this price, may be useful for salty apps. Twist top. Great price. QPR: 89.
4.Lenz Moser Prestige Gruner Veltliner 2013 Niederosterreich, +71233, $13.95: another awesome value, Gvs seem to have come down in price over the past year. The source's TN comes from over a year ago, and the wine has moved on as it is a bit older and tamer, no longer "93" points, but still well-priced. QPR: 89.
5.Rex Riesling 2013 Nahe, +409714, $13.95: another nice rich riesling but without the sweetness as the catalogue indicates. 9.5% ABV is great for a fading summer. Twist top. QPR: 88.
6.Paco & Lola Albarino 2013 DO Rias Baixas, +350041, $18.95: concentrated tropical fruit flavours, longer finish, 12.5 % ABV, twist top. QPR: 88.
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $25:
1.Black Sage Vineyard Merlot 2012 VQA BC Okanagan Valley, +593053, $22.95. QPR: 90.
2.Charles Smith Boom Boom! Syrah 2013 Columbia Valley Washington State, +301499, $24.95. QPR: 89.
3.Vina Maipo Gran Devocion Carmenere/Syrah 2012 Maule Valley, +274100, $17.95: a Chilean wine all the way in style and texture, tobacco, red and black fruit, and properly aged. 14.5% ABV. QPR: 90.
4.Tahbilk the Tower Shiraz 2013 Central Victoria, +412205, $19.95: the wine (formerly known as Chateau Tahbilk) is off-dry with spices and peppers, well-developed smoothness. 14.5% ABV, twist top. QPR: 88.
5.La Ferme du Mont Le Ponnant Cotes du Rhone-Villages 2012, +171371, $18.95: showing some brilliant CdR liveliness, it is GSM (80-10-10) says the back label (not the same grapes nor proportion as the quoted Parker TN states). Unfiltered. 14% ABV. QPR: 89.
6.Chateau Vincens Origine Cahors 2012, +343400, $17.95: the black wine of Cahors is malbec, as everybody now knows. Plummy beyond belief, and intense with mocha tones. Gold medalist. QPR: 89.
7.Masseria Altemura Sasseo Primitivo 2013 IGT Salento, +366955, $17.95: this month's LCBO primitivo release is 14.5% ABV, and is juicy enough to be confused with zinfandel. QPR: 88.
8.Borgo Salcetino Possole 2012 IFT Rosso Toscana, +412619, $16.95: good value for the price, mellowed after opening a while before. 13% ABV, cork closure. QPR: 88.
9.Castellani Filicheto Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2011, +184937, $18.95: great price for a vino nobile. 13.5% ABV, complex mix of fragrances and wood. Cork closure. QPR: 88.
10.Michele Satta Bolgheri Rosso 2012, +39834, $22.95. QPR: 90.
11.Sogrape Carvalhais Duque de Viseu Red 2012 Dao, +546309, $13.95: showing lots of dried fruit, 13% ABV, definitely a food wine. QPR: 88.
12.Balbas Reserva 2005 Ribera del Duero, +85183, $20.95. QPR: 90.
13.Celler Cercavins Lo Virol 2014 Costers del Segre, +425702, $14.95: juicy value, with earthy qualities, 14% ABV, taste Spanish. QPR: 88.
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.Charles Baker Picone Vineyard Riesling 2012 VQA Vinemount Ridge, +241182, $35.20 retail.
2.Vidal Fleury Condrieu 2012, +414516, $49.95.
3.King Estate Signature Collection Pinot Noir 2013 Oregon, +984005, $34.95.
4.Castello di Gabbiano Bellezza Chianti Classico Gran Selezione 2011, +652438, $39.95.