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Wine Picks September 18, 2015

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Note: This batch of wine reviews is not part of the bi-weekly Vintages Releases. Instead, it's a collection of wines outside the Vintages section in store (general list) or wines sent to me directly from wineries that may not yet be available in liquor stores. Click on the Winery or Wine Agency link to get more info.

Dessert Wine

Proshyan Red Semi Sweet 2014, Armenia: An usual Armenian dessert wine with aromas of ripe cherries. It's sweet but not cloying so and would pair with with fruit flans and cobblers, or enjoy it on its own after dinner. Drink: 2014 - 2017 12% MS 750 mL $17.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Happy Knight Wines Creme De Cassis, New Brunswick, Canada: A lovely black currant liqueur from New Brunswick. This cassis falvoured after dinner drink is sweet enough to marry well with desserts or enjoy on its own. It's not cloyingly sweet though and well balanced. Creme De Cassis food pairings: Kir, Kir Royale, ice cream, on its own after your favorite meal. Drink: 2014 - 2017 17% S 375 mL $17.95 Score: 88/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Red Wine

Black Hills Estate Winery Carmenere 2013, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: Pepper and fleshy black plum on the nose and palate of this full-bodied BC red wine made from Carmerere grapes. Some blackberry and cassis on the long finish. Remarkably packed in flavour and full-bodied yet relatively low in alcohol at 12%. Pair with roast beef. Drink: 2015 - 2019 380063 12.5% D 750 mL $50.00 Score: 91/100. September 2015. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Black Hills Estate Winery Nota Bene 2013, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: A remarkably well-made BC red wine from one of the province's top producers. Full-bodied, yet elegance and balanced with a long finish. Aromas of cassis, black currant and dark spice. This is a proprietary Meritage blend that includes Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes. Pair with rare filet mignon. Drink: 2015 - 2020 333864 13.7% XD 750 mL $60.00 Score: 92/100. September 2015. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Caliterra Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2013, Colchagua Valley, Chile: Fleshy ripe purple and black plums on the nose and palate of this full-bodied, smooth Chilean red wine made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Great price for the taste. Good party wine that won't break the budget. Pair with meat lovers' pizza and movie night. Drink: 2014 - 2017 257329 13.5% D 750 mL $8.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Caliterra Tributo Cabernet Sauvignon 2013, Colchagua Valley, Chile: This single vineyard Chilean red wine is made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. It features blackberry and cassis on the nose. Good acidity for meat and tomato sauces on the palate. Full-bodied and smooth. Nice price. This is 97% Cabernet Sauvignon but there's also 2% Cabernet France and 1% Petit Verdot grapes in the blend. It was vinified in 100% stainless steel tanks and then aged 12 months in 12% new French oak barrels. Pair with game meats and duck. Drink: 2014 - 2017 205567 14% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Casal Thaulero Sangiovese 2014, Chieti Igp, Italy: Fleshy sweet blueberies and plums on the nose and palate of this Italian red wine. Robust, smooth and tasty with good aciidty for pasta and tomato sauce. Some spice and sweet cherry flavours on the finish. Made from Sangiovese grapes. Sangiovese food pairings: pasta, red meat, game, cold cuts and seasoned cheeses. Drink: 2014 - 2017 588996 13% MD 750 mL $6.95 Score: 86/100. September 2015. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rosés

Sandbanks Estate Winery Rose 2014, Prince Edward County, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Sweet strawberry rhubarb jam on the nose and palate of this pretty rose. A great substitute for white Zinfandel. Pair with fruit based desserts and cheeses. Rose food pairings: grilled chicken, fish. Drink: 2014 - 2016 244616 12% M 750 mL $12.95 Score: 86/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Sparkling Wine

Francois Pinon Brute Non Dose Vouvray 2012, Loire Valley, Vouvray Aoc, France: A lime-fresh French sparkling wine from the Loire Valley. Vovrays are under-rated, and this one shows why with its terrific refreshment o the palate. Serve on its own well chilled or as a companion to seafood and shellfish. Vouvray food pairings: serve at 10° as an aperitif, or with goat cheese, Japanese food, all shelfish, esp. oysters, or dry roasted chicken or in a cream sauce, salads, sushi, smoked salmon, trout. Drink: 2014 - 2018 12.5% XD 750 mL $39.95 Score: 88/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

See Ya Later Ranch Brut Sparkling, Okanagan Valley, B.C., Canada: The appellation for this zesty sparkling wine is BC VQA. A crisp, toasty and refreshing bubbly with attractive notes of green apple. Great price for this quality. Works well as an aperitif or companion to seafood. Sparkling food pairings: fresh seafood. Drink: 2014 - 2017 271049 13.5% XD 750 mL $20.95 Score: 88/100. September 2015. Best Value Sparkling Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Bodega Francois Lurton piedra Negra Pinot Gris 2014, Uco Valley, Argentina: Dried herbs and lemon zest on the nose of this vivacious Argentine white wine made from Pinot Grigio grapes. Some smoke on the finish. Pair with smoked trout. Drink: 2014 - 2016 556746 12.5% XD 750 mL $12.95 Score: 86/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Riverlore Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Marlborough, New Zealand: A zesty, crisp Sauvignon Blanc with classic aromas of grass, lime and lemongrass. Some gooseberry and nettle on the dry finish. The grapes are hand picked in small batches. Good minerality. Pair with salads and seafood. Drink: 2015 - 2017 417600 13% XD 750 mL $16.20 Score: 90/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Wild Oats Pinot Grigio 2014, Mudgee New South Wales, Australia: White peach and melon on the nose and palate of this attractive and refreshing Australian white wine made from Pinot Grigio grapes. Balanced and medium-bodied with good acidity for seafood. Very pleasant as an aperitif. Drink: 2014 - 2016 399121 12.5% D 750 mL $15.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Goats do Roam 2014, Western Cape, South Africa: This refreshing blend of Viognier, Roussanne, Grenache Blanc grapes offers terrific value. Balanced and mouth-watering and medium-bodied. Nice racy acidity for seafood and shellfish. Aromas of white melon and lime. Food pairings: creamy seafood dishes. Drink: 2014 - 2016 237313 13% XD 750 mL $11.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Cave Spring Cellars Riesling 2013, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: This off-dry Niagara Riesling has superb balance and is packed with fresh ripe peach and lime blossom flavour. Racy acidity meets natural fruit sweetness to make this the ultimate wine for spicy and Asian dishes. Great price. Riesling food pairings: pan-fried salmon or shellfish; boiled lobster or crabmeat; curried shrimp; buttered chicken; Bavarian-style sausage (weisswurst); barbecue pork; baked ham; breaded veal; roasted poultry and game; as an aperitif.. Drink: 2015 - 2020 234583 11% MD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 90/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Cave Spring Cellars Dry Riesling 2013, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A superb Niagara white wine or the money. Cave Spring is the Riesling master and it shows in this value-priced edition. Aromas of wet stone, dry peach and lime zest. Clean and crisp with no oak. Pair with fresh seafood. Riesling food pairings: goat’s cheese appetizers, sushi, raw oysters, marinated grilled vegetables, pan-seared trout, perch or salmon, vegetarian pastas, breaded seafood (sole or cod), charcuterie, lemon-braised chicken. Drink: 2015 - 2020 233635 11.5% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 90/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Cave Spring Cellars Chardonnay 2013, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Cool, crisp and refreshing Chardonnay with lovely notes of white melon, green apple and a touch of smoke. Medium- to almost full-bodied. Perfect for seafood and pasta with cream sauce. Chardonnay food pairings: grilled or poached salmon with cream sauce; pan-fried shellfish; chicken pot pie; cheese casseroles; stuffed Cornish hen; lemon-roasted chicken; pork with apples.. Drink: 2015 - 2018 228551 13% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Bolla 2014, Doc, Italy: A clean, crisp, zesty blend of 90% Garganega, 10% Trebbiano Di Soave grapes. Perfect as a chilled aperitif or companion to seafood. Aromas of lime and lemon zest. Food pairings: modern cuisine, inventive salads and sushi. Drink: 2014 - 2017 12.8% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Caliterra Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Curico Valley, Chile: A grassy, herbal, zesty Chilean white wine made from Sauvignon Blanc grapes. Very well priced for the quality. These grapes are grown in one of the country's cool climate regions. The winery owns 1085 hectares or 2681 acres of land of which 75% is untouched land. Cool nights and gentle breezes temper the sun's heat. Errazuriz owns 50% of this winery. Aromas of tomato leaf and lime zest on the finish. Pair with fresh seafood. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: shellfish, grilled chicken or pork. Drink: 2014 - 2016 275909 13% D 750 mL $8.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Matua Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Marlborough, New Zealand: Lime fresh with lemon sunshine in the vicacious New Zealand white wine made from the country's classic white grape Sauvignon Blanc. Matua was the first to plant Sauvignon Blanc grapes in New Zealand, back in 1969, and made its first bottling in 1974. Cool coastal breezes preserve the racy acidity that complements fresh shellfish. Matua is a Maori word meaning the Head of the Family. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: pizza. Drink: 2014 - 2016 309591 13.1% D 750 mL $19.95 Score: 91/100. September 2015. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Ara Pathway Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Marlborough, New Zealand: Zesty and fresh New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc that has more lime citrus brightness than herbal grassy notes. Great price. Pair with fresh seafood and salads or spinach quiche. Drink: 2014 - 2016 416222 13.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Casal Thaulero Pinot Grigio 2014, Chieti Igt, Italy: Clean and crisp with notes of lime and white melon. Serve chilled as an aperitif or companion to seafood and suishi. Pinot Grigio food pairings: white meats, boiled or roasted fish, sushi. Drink: 2014 - 2016 73163 13% D 750 mL $7.95 Score: 86/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Attems Pinot Grigio 2014, Venezia Giulia, Friuli I.G.T., Italy: A pleasant, easy-drinking Italian white wine made from Pinot Grigio grapes. Some smoke on white melon on the nose and palate. Serve chilled as an aperitif or companion to seafood. Pinot Grigio food pairings: grilled chicken breast, summer salads, frittata, basil pesto, pork burgers, grilled lake fish. Drink: 2014 - 2016 707950 12.5% XD 750 mL $19.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Fetzer Sundial Chardonnay 2013, California, United States: A full-bodied and luscious Californian Chardonnay with layers of butterscotch and vanilla smoke from oak aging. Some peach notes on the mid palate. Good quality for the price. Pair with roasted chicken. Chardonnay food pairings: grilled chicken or seafood. Drink: 2013 - 2016 291674 13% D 750 mL $12.95 Score: 87/100. September 2015. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

CedarCreek Estate Winery Platinum Block 3 Riesling 2014, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: Lime fresh with lemon sunshine on the nose and palate. Absolutely brilliant and refreshing. Densely packed with flavour yet perfectly balanced and medium-bodied. Pacy acidity for seafood, salads, shellfish and vegetarian dishes. Riesling food pairings: sweet and sour pork, seared tuna, planked salmon. Drink: 2015 - 2020 304691 14.5% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 92/100. September 2015. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


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