4.J.B. POLI VACA MORA AMARO VENETO, $37.95 for 700 ml, +662726 Vintages: a grappa-based bitter from the Veneto that is on the dryish side of balanced. You don't find these too often in Ontario (I've had people tell me that even Campari is too sweet): this is a digestif, like Fernet, that is perfect for settling a tummy with its off-menthol tones coupled with fall spicings of cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg. At the risk of mixing my languages, it is a true "trou Normand". Vaca Mora refers to a "black cow" train that served amaros to the passengers in 1885. 32% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
5.Tenute Silvio Nardi Brunello di Montalcino 2010 $41.95 +922054 Vintages: good depth of expression with many lush sangiovese points. Expect some sourish black cherries and forest floor complexity, but also some soft mocha in a North American appeal. Very well made with exceedingly long length (reflecting some herbaceousness), and affordable. 14.5% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 93 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
6.Remo Farina Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2012 Veneto, $39.95 +995910
Remo Farina Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore 2013 Veneto, $17.95 +999946 (or, $62.95 for 2 x 750 ml bottles plus a wooden case, +384578 Vintages:
this is a very popular package which sold out last year and has been re-ordered albeit with a one-year later vintage date. No matter, the wines are consistently made from year to year. One could also hope that the 2013 Valpolicella Classico was re-fermented on the same dregs of the 2012 amarone grape pressings – just to be a neat package. Expect deep lush fruity fresh flavours in both wines, more so with the Amarone which also has some decent oak tones from barrel aging. A very attractive gift pack with the wooden reusable box. Available separately at Vintages December 12, 2015. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
7.LOIRE VINS DOMAINE Chateau D'Eternes Saumur Brut NV Loire $14.95, +429696: this is a Chenin Blanc – Chardonnay blend, in a methode traditionale process for secondary in the bottle fermentation. It all emphasizes white-fleshed fruit, nuts, and vanilla. 12.5% ABV. This wine scored four stars in a recent Wine Writers' Circle of Canada Sparkling wine tasting. Quality/Price rating is 91 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.