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Wine Picks April 20, 2018

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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

Colheita Port 1995, Douro D.O., Portugal: A gorgeous tawny port with aromas of toffee, caramel and toasted almond. Perfect for crème brûlée. Colheita Port food pairings: roasted nuts, fresh fruit cup, dark chocolate. Drink: 2016 - 2025 69930 19% S 750 mL $34.95 Score: 94/100. April 2018. Top Rated Dessert Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Red Wine

Quinta Da Pedra Cavada Grande Reserva 2012, Douro, Portugal: Dark, brooding and full-bodied Portuguese red wine blend of local grapes. Loaded with smoke, toasty oak and blackened fruit. Aged in oak barrels for 15 months. Decant 1-2 hours and pair with grilled meats. Drink: 2018 - 2023 538934 14.5% XD 750 mL $76.00 Score: 90/100. April 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Josh Cellars Joseph Carr Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, California, United States: A full-bodied Californian red wine made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Aromas of black fruit and toasty oak. Firm tannins. Finishes with smoke and all-spice. Pair with grilled meats. Cabernet Sauvignon food pairings: pork tenderloin, hodge-podge, grilled burgers. Drink: 2015 - 2019 461053 13.5% D 750 mL $17.00 Score: 89/100. April 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Queylus Tradition Pinot Noir 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Thomas Bachelder is one of the most respected winemakers in Canada. This is a spectacular Pinot Noir from a great year. Seductive fleshy cherry and cranberry with spice on the nose and palate of this ethereal Ontario Pinot Noir. Pair with veal and game dishes. Pinot Noir food pairings: lamb and pilaf casserole, roast leg of lamb in rosemary and garlic, lamb chops with Danish blue cheese. Drink: 2018 - 2025 392738 13% XD 750 mL $29.95 Score: 92/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Motto Wines Unabashed Zinfandel 2015, California, United States: Juicy purple and black plum aromas with dark spice and smoke. Full-bodied, but not heavy. This smooth, robust Californian red wine is made from the state's iconic grape Zinfandel. Some terrific notes of cherry and blackberry on the finish. Pair with roast turkey and grilled meats. Zinfandel food pairings: meat lovers' pizza, chicken wings, grilled burgers, sausages. Drink: 2016 - 2019 13.5% D 750 mL $19.95 Score: 92/100. April 2018. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Queylus Réserve du Domaine Pinot Noir 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A superb Niagara Pinot Noir from a much-respected domaine and winemaker Thomas Bacheldor. Layers of fleshy ripe cherry fruit and spice, yet it's also balanced and elegant with a long finish. The 2013 vintage was a strong one. Pair with roast chicken. Pinot Noir food pairings: lamb shanks in red wine and roasted garlic, grilled lamb lollipops, stuffed lamb tenderloin. Drink: 2018 - 2023 392886 14% XD 750 mL $44.95 Score: 93/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Queylus Grande Reserve Pinot Noir 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A stunning Pinot Noir from a strong vintage. This cool climate Niagara red wine is extremely aromatic with notes of ripe red berries and spice. Supple and smooth with polished tannins. Organically farmed grapes. Racy acidity for roasted turkey and veal. Drink: 2018 - 2025 392878 13% XD 750 mL $59.95 Score: 95/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Queylus Tradition Cabernet Franc 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Lots of racy acidity in this cool climate Cabernet Franc with aromas of tart cherry and smoke. Good grip on the palate and mouth-watering juiciness. Decant 1 hour. Pair with grilled pork chops. Drink: 2017 - 2021 13% XD 750 mL $25.95 Score: 90/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Queylus Grande Reserve Merlot 2013, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A stunning Niagara Merlot with layers of complexity, fleshy black plum notes and earthy goodness. The vines for this wine are planted in blue soils, similar to those found in Bordeaux's Pomerol, where Merlot rules the day as a benchmark wine. Full-bodied and supple. Pair with grilled pork chops. Drink: 2018 - 2023 13.5% XD 750 mL $44.95 Score: 93/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Joseph Carr Josh Legacy Red 2015, California, United States: Campfire smoke and hickory notes on the nose and palate along with black fruit and dark spice. Full-bodied and smooth. This Californian red wine is a blend featuring primarily Zinfandel and Merlot that tastes mostly like Zinfandel. Pair with spare ribs. Drink: 2017 - 2019 507467 13% D 750 mL $17.80 Score: 88/100. April 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Roux Père & Fils Saint-Aubin Les Frionnes 2015, Burgundy A.C., France: A juicy, mouth-watering Old World Burgundian Pinot Noir with aromas of dark cherry and spice. Medium-bodied, smooth and supple with racy acidity for veal or roast chicken. Food pairings: roast chicken, fricassee rabbit, roast pork tenderloin. Drink: 2018 - 2021 527986 13% XD 750 mL $46.95 Score: 91/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Sister's Run Heirloom Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Coonawarra, South Australia, Australia: Only 4126 dozen cases of this wine were made for the 2015 vintage. A terrific, full-bodied Australian red wine made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Aromas of dark plums, mint and toasty oak. Pair with grilled steak. Cabernet Sauvignon food pairings: steak topped pizza, Tourtière, roast beef. Drink: 2017 - 2021 269464 14.5% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 90/100. April 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

San Felice Vigorello 2011, Tuscany I.G.T., Italy: A robust, tannic Italian red wine with a firm grip on the palate. This will smooth out with more cellar time and then decant 1-2 hours when you open it. Aromas of black fruit, smoke and tar. This wine has been produced since 1968, and is one of the first Super Tuscan wines. Pair with hearty meat dishes. Drink: 2018 - 2024 726463 14% XD 750 mL $59.95 Score: 91/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Josh Cellars Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Napa Valley, California, United States: Fleshy ripe blackberries and sweet dark berries on the nose and palate of this tasty Californian red wine made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes in Napa Valley. Full-bodied, round and supple. Pair with grilled meats. Cabernet Sauvignon food pairings: pork tenderloin, hodge-podge, grilled burgers. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13.5% D 750 mL $25.00 Score: 90/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Queylus Reserve du Domaine Cabernet Franc 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Fresh, cool climate Cabernet Franc with aromas of dark fleshy ripe plums and smoke. Full-bodied and supple. Pair with game dishes. Drink: 2017 - 2021 13% XD 750 mL $25.95 Score: 92/100. April 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rosés

Simple Life Rose 2017, California, United States: A lovely, crisp, dry Californian rose with aromas of field strawberries. Mouth-watering and juicy. Pair with roast chicken. Drink: 2018 - 2019 13.5% D 750 mL $18.00 Score: 92/100. April 2018. Top Rated Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Gnarly Head Chardonnay 2016, California, United States: Juicy, full-bodied Californian white wine made from the classic Chardonnay grape. Lots of crisp goden apple flavours and aromas along with citrus and toasty oak. Round and supple. Pair with grilled chicken, veal and game birds. Drink: 2018 - 2021 486449 14% D 750 mL $15.95 Score: 89/100. April 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Noble Vines Collection 446 Chardonnay 2015, San Bernabe, Monterey, California, United States: A buttery, rich Californian Chardonnay from the cool climate of Monterey. Toffee and caramel on the palate with golden apple. Pair with roast chicken or turkey. Noble Vines 446 is named for the vine stock 4, which is now planted in the winery's block 46 vineyard and other sites in San Bernabe. Chardonnay food pairings: roast chicken, seafood alfredo, pork tenderloin with peach, apricot compote. Drink: 2018 - 2022 458687 14.5% XD 750 mL $18.95 Score: 89/100. April 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Bachelder Johnson Single Vineyard Chardonnay 2013, Yamhill, Oregon, United States: A crisp, lively Oregon white wine made from the classic Chardonnay grape by winemaker Thomas Bachelder. Aromas of green apple and smoke. Pair with roast turkey or chicken. Drink: 2018 - 2023 378265 13% XD 750 mL $44.00 Score: 92/100. April 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Louis Jadot 2011, Marsannay, Burgundy A.C., France: A spectacular Old World Burgundian Chardonnay with aromas of green apple loveliness. Crisp and fresh with balancing acidity for roast chicken. Food pairings: roast chicken, breast of veal stuffed with wild mushrooms, roast duck. Drink: 2017 - 2021 522136 13% XD 750 mL $41.95 Score: 92/100. April 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Smoking Loon Pinot Grigio 2016, California, United States: Crisp, fresh and floral California Pinot Grigio with aromas of pear and lemongrass. Medium-bodied with racy acidity for halibut or sushi. Drink: 2017 - 2019 483289 12.5% D 750 mL $14.90 Score: 88/100. April 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


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