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Saturday, December 6, 2008

TRADE TASTING: Mission Hill Family Estate Portfolio tasting, Oct 29, 2008

The Time and Date: Wednesday, October 29, 2008  11:30 AM to 5 PM
The Event: an all day session with Mission Hill Family Estate: the
Oculus Vintage Affair. We had a luncheon with Anthony von Mandl
(Proprietor) and Ingo Grady (Director of Wine Education). Both spoke
about the wines, the new release of Oculus 2005 and the inaugural
releases of Perpetua (a new single vineyard chardonnay) and the premium
red blend Quatrain. This was followed by Grady's masterclass, which
added the unreleased Oculus 2006 for a vertical tasting.
The Venue: Spoke Club, King Street West
The Target Audience: wine press, sommeliers
The Availability/Catalogue: all of the wines are available via LCBO,
Consignment, or Private Order.
The Quote: "This is our first ever Eastern Canada launch". During the
masterclass, Grady's presentation was augmented by an extensive
handbook. While Oculus has the same four grapes (M/CS/CF/PV), the
proportions vary from year to year, the French oak aging time varies,
the use of new oak varies, etc.
The Wines: we tasted a variety of VQA wines at the luncheon, the
seminar, and the open portfolio tasting. I did not have time to taste
the non-VQA wines.
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Oculus 2004 +965789 $70
-Oculus 2005 +220029 $60
-Oculus 2006 not yet released
-Quatrain 2005 +220045 $47.95 (M57/Syrah28/CF10/CS5: this meant that
there was no SLC Syrah bottling in 2005)
-Select Lot Collection Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon 2006 +220060
Consignment $26.95
-Select Lot Collection Chardonnay 2006 +220078  $26.95
-Reserve Chardonnay 2006 +545004  $21.95 Vintages Essentials
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Perpetua 2006 +220052  $32.95 – Burgundian style, sur lies
-Select Lot Collection Merlot 2004 +144187 Consignment
-Select Lot Collection Riesling Icewine 2005   +965797  $79.95 375 mL
-Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2006  +57430  $21.95 Vintages
-Reserve Merlot 2006  +218379  $22.95  Consignment
-Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2006  +553321   $24.95  Vintages Essentials
-Prospect Winery Spotted Lake Sauvignon Blanc 2007  +214725  $14.95
-Prospect Winery Census Count Chardonnay 2006  +220102  $14.95  LCBO
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Select Lot Collection Syrah +144179  $36.95
-Reserve Pinot Gris 2007  +220011  $19.95  Consignment
-Prospect Winery Ogopogo's Lair Pinot Grigio 2007  +220136 $14.95
-Prospect Winery Red Willow Shiraz 2006  +220144  $15.95 Consignment
The Food: nothing at the portfolio tasting nor the masterclass, but the
wine press had a luncheon with baked tomato and olive tart, lobster
ravioli (good with SLC Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon), seared scallops, elk
chop (Oculus and Quatrain), and crème brulee (SLC Riesling Icewine
The Downside: we started later than usual, and thus the luncheon ran
into the masterclass time. Then we had to wait for the portfolio setup.
The Upside: the vertical Oculus tasting.
The Contact Person:
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 90.


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