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Wine Picks January 8, 2017

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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.

Red Wine

J.P. Chenet Art’s Primeur Nouveau Gamay 2016, Beaujolais, France: Dr. Pepper and cherry cola on the nose followed by cherry bubblegum on the palate. Rustic with more of a tannin grip than the other nouveau-style wines in 2016. Finishes with Juicy Fruit purple gum. Pair with red licorice. Drink: 2016 - 2017 366476 12% XD 750 mL $13.95 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Villages Nouveau 2016, Burgundy, France: This is the best of this year's Beaujolais Nouveau wines, and it's no surprise that it comes from George duBoeuf, known as the King of Beaujolais. Aromas of tart cherry and mouth-watering berries. Smooth and medium-bodied. Drink: 2016 - 2017 932780 12.2% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Joseph Drouhin Primeur Beaujolais Villages Nouveau 2016, Burgundy, France: One of the best nouveau wines year after year. This medium-bodied smooth red wine has remarkable character for being bottled so quickly. Attractive aromas of dark cherries. Some herbal notes on the nose, but these disappear on the palate. Great mouth-watering juiciness for roast turkey or chicken. Drink: 2016 - 2017 113266 12.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Mommessin Beaujolais Nouveau 2016, Burgundy, France: A joyous nouveau from the 2016 vintage. Mommesin is one of the most respected producers in the Beaujolais region. Their nouveau this year offers rich aromas of cherry-berry and some spice. More weight than most nouveau wines. Pair with grilled chicken. Drink: 2016 - 2017 897934 12% D 750 mL $13.95 Score: 88/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Tornatore Etna Rossi 2014, Sicily, Italy: A gorgeous southern Italian red wine from the Island of Sicily. This is a blend of two local indigenous grapes that provides a supreme balance between racy acidity and minerality for tangy dishes and dark fruit and smoke for palate pleasure. Drink: 2016 - 2022 13% D 750 mL $35.00 Score: 92/100. January 2017. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Gamay Nouveau 2016, Beaujolais, France: A second nouveau wine from George duBoeuf: buy both and compare. This is a lighter, more carefree version of the nouveau style. Cherry-berry and some banana notes. Pair with bistro fare. Drink: 2016 - 2017 891846 12.5% D 750 mL $10.95 Score: 87/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery The Fool Gamay Nouveau 2016, Niagara, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A vibrant fresh Ontario red wine that is Niagara's take on beaujolais nouveau. It's made from gamay grapes that were only recently still hanging on the vine. It's bottled quickly to preserve the fruit freshness, just like nouveau. Aromas of fleshy sweet cherry-berry. Medium-bodied, smooth, juicy and mouth-watering. Pair with grilled chicken or pork. Drink: 2016 - 2017 220483 12% D 750 mL $12.95 Score: 87/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Mezzacorona Novello 2016, Alto Adige, Trentino, Italy: Italy's take on France's Beaujolais Nouveau style, bottled just weeks after the grapes are harvested and meant to be consumed young. Made from Teroldego grapes rather than Gamay in France. Vines grow in the foothills of the Dolomite mountains. Bright ruby hue with berry flavours. Pair with smoked meats and hard cheeses. Drink: 2016 - 2016 443192 12% D 750 mL $9.95 Score: 86/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Negrar Novello 2016, Veneto, Italy: Strawberry bubblegum and banana peel on the nose of this light, acidic Italian nouveau-style wine. Pair with Skittles. Drink: 2016 - 2016 899955 12% D 750 mL $9.95 Score: 84/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Tollo Novello Rosso Terre Di Chieti 2016, Abruzzo, Italy: Banana bumblegum and purple berry flavours in the light Italian nouveau-style wine. Drink: 2016 - 2016 271759 12.5% XD 750 mL $8.95 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau Gamay Noir 2016, Beaujolais A.O.C., France: This lively, dry, medium-bodied French red wine is made from the Gamay grape in the nouveau style meant to be consumed this year. Dark cherry and terrific richness for this style of wine. One of my favourite of the nouveau wines. Very fruity and vibrant. Drink: 2016 - 2016 12% D 750 mL $17.50 Score: 88/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Vin De Pays L'ardèche Gamay Noir 2015, Vin De Pays De L'ardeche Igp, France: This attractive French red wine made from the Gamay grape has aromas of red berries and some floral notes. Light-bodied with vibrant acidity and smooth tannins. Pair with grilled seafood. Drink: 2015 - 2016 12.5% D 750 mL $12.85 Score: 87/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Gamay 2014, Beaujolais-Villages Aoc, France: A pretty Gamay wine with light berry notes and racy acidity. Try it with seared seafood. Drink: 2014 - 2017 122077 12.5% D 750 mL $13.95 Score: 87/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais 2014, Beaujolais Aoc, France: Very pretty and light yet flavorful. Field berries on the nose and palate, with lovely racy acidity for light seafood dishes. Drink: 2014 - 2017 212480 12.5% D 750 mL $13.95 Score: 88/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Fun Gamay 2014, Beaujolais, France: Delightfully made and consumed! Smooth and light-bodied with soft cherry notes and field strawberries. Great aperitif. Gamay food pairings: salmon, roast chicken. Drink: 2014 - 2017 228155 12.5% D 750 mL $14.90 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Sirius Merlot Cabernet 2014, Bordeaux, France: Ruby red tints and hues. Medium-bodied with lively acidity, firm tannins and berry fruit notes. This is a French red wine blend of 55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Sauvignon grapes produced by Peter Sichel. Drink: 2015 - 2018 13% XD 750 mL $14.00 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Stéphane Aviron Gamay Nouveau Gamay Noir 2016, Ardeche, France: A light-bodied, dry French red wine made from the Gamay grape. Vibrant acidity, with polished tannins, berry fruit and a short finish. Drink this year. Drink: 2016 - 2016 12.5% D 750 mL $15.95 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Pierre-Marie Chermette Gamay Nouveau Les Griottes Gamay Noir 2016, Beaujolais, France: A bright purple ruby colour, with berry fruit notes. Somewhat herbal and green on the nose and palate. Medium-bodied and dry with lots of acidity. Firm tannins. Produced by Domaine du Vissoux, this light French red wine is made from the Gamay grape in the nouveau style meant to be consumed this year. Lots of fresh berry flavour. Drink: 2016 - 2016 12.5% D 750 mL $17.95 Score: 84/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Trenel Beaujolais Nouveau Gamay Noir 2016, Beaujolais A.O.C., France: Juicy purple and black plum aromas with dark spice. Happy, straight-up pleasure in a glass. Dry with a purple hue in the glass. Offers primary fruit notes. Light-bodied with good acidity. Drink this year. Drink: 2016 - 2016 12.5% D 750 mL $17.95 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Laurence Et Rémi Dufaitre Beaujolais Nouveau Gamay Noir 2016, Beaujolais, France: Purple ruby hue in the glass. This light French red wine is made in the nouveau style meant to be consumed this year. Vibrant acidity and smooth texture. Drink: 2016 - 2016 12.5% D 750 mL $19.95 Score: 85/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Damien Coquelet Vin De France Nouveau Gamay 2016, France: Purple-red tints in the glass, and featuring fruity berry notes. A light-bodied French nouveau wine with good acidity and smooth tannins. Available in the SAQ. Drink this year. Drink: 2016 - 2016 12.5% D 750 mL Score: 87/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Ruffino Modus 2012, Tuscany I.G.T., Italy: The 2012 vintage of this rich, full-bodied Italian red wine is a blend of 50% Sangiovese, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Merlot grapes. The vines are planted primarily in the vineyards of Ruffino's estates of Poggio Casciano and Santedame, which is hilly clay rich in fossil fragments. The wine undergoes a malolactic fermentation and a post-fermentative maceration on the skins for 2 weeks to add richness and depth. It's then aged for 12 months in first, second and third use American and French 225 litre oak barrels. This Super Tuscan is worthy of your attention, from its ruby-violet gem glints in the glass to its finish as long as a Tuscan country road. It delivers an intense bouquet of black cherry, plum, graphite, dried tobacco leaves and dark spice. This robust red wine has remarkably polished tannins that yield to a supple, smooth texture. Incredible concentration and flavour at such a reasonable level of alcohol. Pair with truffle-inflected dishes and grilled meats. Food pairings: pork tenderloin, grilled chicken, autumn hodge-podge. Drink: 2015 - 2021 912956 13.5% XD 750 mL $29.95 Score: 94/100. January 2017. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Georges Duboeuf Brouilly 2014, Beaujolais Aoc, France: Lots of juicy, mouth-watering tart red berries that demand food like planked salmon or roast chicken. Medium-bodied with smooth tannins and terrific richness and layering. Drink: 2014 - 2017 213934 12.7% D 750 mL $17.95 Score: 89/100. January 2017. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Rallo Insolia 2015, Italy: A pretty, floral, vibrant white wine. If you like Torrontes, the Argentine grape, or even Viognier, give this medium-bodied Italian wine a try. Less floral, but very attractive aromatics. Pair with fresh seafood. Drink: 2016 - 2018 13% D 750 mL $25.00 Score: 88/100. January 2017. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Leth Brunnthal Erst Lage Grüner Veltliner 2013, Niederösterreich, Austria: Clean and crisp but not too green Austrian white wine made from the country's classic gruner veltliner grape. Pair with fresh seafood, shellfish and salads. Grüner Veltliner food pairings: smoked salmon, vegetable rissoles, boiled ham, vegetarian dishes.. Drink: 2014 - 2018 12278 13.8% XD 750 mL $22.95 Score: 91/100. January 2017. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


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