WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR JANUARY 9, 2016
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
Ramirez de la Piscina Crianza 2011 Rioja, +383018, $15.95: a very well priced woodsy crianza, full of tempranillo fruit. In oak for 15 months (more than the required six). QPR: 91.
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $25:
1.Studert-Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spatlese 2011 Mosel, +912659, $24.95. QPR: 89.
2.Featherstone Black Sheep Riesling 2014 VQA Niagara Peninsula, +80234, $16.95: lovely complex wine, crisp lemon acidity with body but off-dry on the finish, twist top, overwhelming but underpriced. Not as (M) as indicated in LCBO catalogue. 9.5% ABV. QPR: 89.
3.Catena Alamos Torrontes 2015 Salta, +81539, $14.95: the wine of Toronto, useful around the fireplace to evoke memories of summer. 13.5% ABV, off-dry mode, twist top. QPR: 88.
4.Middle-Earth Sauvignon Blanc 2014 Nelson, +391987, $17.95: very good consistent MVC kiwi savvy, well-priced for value. Twist top. QPR: 88.
5.Mulderbosch Chenin Blanc 2015, +675421, $14.95: nice chenin floral flavours, backed up by orchard fruit with a lemony finish. QPR: 88.
6.Saint-Roch Vieilles Vignes Grenache Blanc/Rousanne Cotes du Roussillon 2014, +175232, $16.95: nifty and compact white Rhone with low yields, longer finish with older vines, very goof price. 13% ABV. QPR: 88.
7.Lingenfelder Bird Label Riesling 2013 Pfalz, +568634, +$14.95: very popularly priced Germaan riesling, consistent with light and soft tones yet 11.5% ABV and twist top. Not (M) in taste. QPR: 88.
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $25:
1.Foris Pinot Noir 2012 Rogue Valley Oregon, +937128, $24.95. QPR: 89.
2.Chateau Blaignan 2010 Medoc, +400606, $23.95. QPR: 90.
3.Bod. Ateca Honoro Vera Garnacha 2013, +432997, $15.95: "Garnacha of the month at the LCBO". QPR: 89.
4.Valpantena Valpolicela Ripasso 2013, +429928, $15.95: "Ripasso of the month at the LCBO". QPR: 89.
5.Matane Primitivo 2013 IGT Puglia, +434290, $14.95: "Primitivo of the month at the LCBO". QPR: 88.
6.Chateau d'Aydie L'origine Madiran 2012, +343566, $14.95: charming black fruit on the mid-palate, but the tannat grape gives it some substance and longer length for food. QPR: 88.
7.Chateau des Aladeres Selection Vieilles Vignes 2012 Corbieres, +431726, $14.95: leather notes and a charmer for dark and concentrated flavours. QPR: 88.
8.Indomita Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 Maipo, +434191, $15.95: loaded with cabby flavours, very tasty, cassis and mint, wood tones of toast. 14% ABV, cork closure. QPR: 88.
9.Zuccardi Santa Julia Magna 2013 Mendoza, +93799, $14.95: great blend of cabernet sauvignon (50%), malbec (40%) and syrah (10%), twist top, 14% ABV. Emphasis on red fruit. 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.Te Kairanga Pinot Noir 2013 Martinborough, +744946, $26.95 retail.
2.Caiarossa Pergolaia 2008 IGT Toscana, +424333, $34.95.
3.Allende 2007 Rioja, +954560, $29.95.