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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January 23/10 Vintages Release Notes

By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing
"Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net Compendium" is guide to thousands
of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers and
spirits, at (since 1995). Creator of Canada's leading wine
satire site at My 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 available for re-tasting.
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $20 or so.
1. Santa Julia Reserva Chardonnay 2008 Mendoza: slightly above entry
level, creamy, value priced. +932368, $13.95, QPR: 90.
2. Strewn Pinot Blanc 2008 VQA Niagara-on-the-lake: oaked aged for a
dimensional extra, a sort of pinot grigio with attitude. +522748,
$13.95, QPR: 90.
3. Folie a Deux Menage a Trois White 2008 California: sourced from
chardonnay, moscato and chenin blanc grapes for that "je ne sais quoi"
feel. +665166, $17.95, QPR: 90.
4. Yalumba Y Series Pinot Gris 2008 South Australia: twist top, good
body for a pinot gris, longer finish. +138586, $15.95, QPR: 90.
5. Errazuriz Wild Ferment Chardonnay 2008 Casablanca Valley: a
chardonnay with attitude, creamy, some gaminess. +738393, $16.95, QPR:
6. Pierre Sparr Reserve Gewurztraminer 2008 Alsace: 13.5% ABV, spicy
orange complexity from association with the muscat family, slight
bitterness on finish. +747600, $17.95, QPR: 90.
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $20 or so.
1. Kaiken Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Mendoza: plumy, dense, but
approachable soon. +143248, $14.95, QPR: 90.
2. Luigi Bosca Reserva Merlot 2006 Mendoza: good oaking, integration
with fruit, delicious. +143289, $16.95, QPR: 90.
3. Santa Julia Magna 2008 Mendoza: good blend of Malbec, cabernet
sauvignon, and syrah, red fruit, and long finish. +93799, $14.95, QPR:
5. Zonte's Footstep Shiraz/Viognier 2007 Langhorne Creek South
Australia: excellent North Rhone style, great price. +72975, $15.95,
QPR: 91.
6. Graham Beck Merlot 2006 WO Coastal Region South Africa: good
chocolate-coffee tones, tasty character. +607804, $15.95, QPR: 90.
7. Leopard's Leap Shiraz 2007 WO Coastal Region South Africa: good MVC
for the price, tastes like a quality syrah. +148213, $12.95, QPR: 90.
8. Chateau Grand Ferrand 2006 Bordeaux Superieur: has that "gout de
Bordeaux" MVC feel. +138693, $14.95, QPR: 90.
9. Pech Matelles Marselan 2008 Vin de Pays des Bouches du Rhone: an
off-dry feel, very cabby, organic, well-produced and well-priced.
+148684, $12.95, QPR: 90.
10. La Reserve de Crouzau St. Gervais 2007 Cotes du Rhone-Villages:
good syrah hit, toothy and full of blackberries and pepper. +142942,
$14.95, QPR: 90.
11. Apollonio Valle Cupa 2001 IGT Salento: wood and raisins, long long
finish, nicely aged south Italy wine. +84046, $19.95, QPR: 90.
12. Azul Portugal Vinho Tinto 2007 Palmela Portugal: well-developed
already, good tasting Euro blend. +146167, $12.95, QWPR: 90.
13. Piedras de San Pedro Loculto 2005 Crianza Ribera del Duero:
excellent, with wood-black fruit-acid integration in play, some
eucalyptus. +147926, $18.95, QPR: 91.
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. Le Clos Jordanne La Petite Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007 VQA Twenty Mile
Bench Niagara, +33944, $40 retail.
2. Hess Select Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Mendocino/Lake/Napa Counties,
+25080, $23.95.
3. Greg Norman Estates Shiraz/Cabernet 2007 Limestone Coast South
Australia, +586156, $24.95.
4. Masi Brolo di Campofiorin 2006 IGT Rosso del Veronese, +976092,

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