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Wine Picks August 28, 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.

Red Wine

Henry of Pelham Winery Speck Family Reserve Baco Noir 2016, Niagara, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A full-bodied, rich Niagara Baco with aromas of black fruit, toasty oak and smoke. Perfect for grilled meats. Baco Noir food pairings: blackened, smoked beef dishes, grilled radicchio, hamburgers. Drink: 2016 - 2021 461699 13.5% D 750 mL $24.95 Score: 94/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Cabernet Merlot 2016, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Round, voluptuous and full-bodied Cabernet-Merlot blend from Niagara. Aromas of black fleshy ripe fruit and some spice. Pair with grilled pork chops. Cabernet Merlot food pairings: Mediterranean dishes, pastas and grilled fare. Drink: 2016 - 2021 504241 13.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Joel Gott Wines 815 Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, California, United States: A breezy, hedonistic hallway of cool mint and fleshy ripe blackberry on the nose of this lovely, aromatic Californian Cabernet. Juicy and savoury with enticing herbs and meaty notes mid-palate. Very intriguing. Full-bodied and smooth with some dark spices on the finish along with cedar brush. Highly recommended. Cabernet Sauvignon food pairings: chicken cacciatore, beef stew, strong cheeses, Margherita pizza. Drink: 2017 - 2022 444059 13.9% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Baco Noir 2017, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Such an amazing wine for this price! Full-bodied, rich and bursting with berry flavours and smoke. Long finish. Pair with smoked sausages and aged cheddar. Baco Noir food pairings: aged cheddar, game meats, beef with horseradish or mustard, spicy food or the startling yet remarkably harmonious pairing of strawberries with black berry. Drink: 2018 - 2022 270926 13% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Sibling Rivalry Red 2016, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A juicy, smooth, full-bodied red wine blend made by the three Speck brothers. Great value. Pair with meat lovers pizza. Food pairings: hamburgers on the barbeque, pasta with meat sauce. Drink: 2018 - 2021 126151 13.5% D 750 mL $13.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Joel Gott Wines Merlot 2015, California, United States: A terrific, robust and mouth-watering Californian Merlot with a satin smooth, supple texture and full-bodied weight. Fleshy ripe red berries on the nose and palate. Perfect for grilled meats and lamb. Merlot food pairings: roast leg of pork, lamb Tangine, gourmet burgers. Drink: 2017 - 2022 479121 13.9% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Frankland Estate Shiraz 2015, Frankland River, Western Australia, Australia: Black raspberry liqueur aromas and flavours on the nose and palate of this full-bodied smooth Australia shiraz. Pair with roast beef. Shiraz food pairings: roast leg of lamb, barbecued ribs in sauce, hamburger, hard cheese. Drink: 2018 - 2022 552133 13.8% D 750 mL $26.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rebel Wine Three Thieves Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, California, United States: A tasty, savoury, full-bodied California red wine made from the classic Cabernet Sauvignon grape. Aromas of dark plums, cassis and blackberry with some toasty oak. Perfect for hamburgers or meat lover's pizza. Drink: 2018 - 2021 541961 13.45% D 750 mL $19.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Gattavecchi Nobile Di Montepulciano 2013, Tuscany D.O.C.G., Italy: The 2013 vintage of this robust Italian red wine is a blend of 90% Prugnolo Gentile, 8% Canaiolo, 2% Colorino grapes. A robust Italian red wine with savoury, meaty aromas and flavours. Pleasantly bitter black fruit on the palate and finish. Pair with prime rib. Nobile Di Montepulciano food pairings: prime rib roast, roast saddle of boar, bison burgers. Drink: 2018 - 2024 672642 14% XD 750 mL $25.95 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Paper Road Pinot Noir 2016, Wairarapa, North Island, New Zealand: A touch herbal and stemmy on the nose with more fleshy ripe cherries and plums on the palate. Racy acidity for grilled chicken. The Paper Road Vineyard was originally planted on an area that was designated to by a road in the 1890s. Bright and tart with mouth-watering acidity. Medium-bodied and supple. Pinot Noir food pairings: beef bourguignon, roast turkey, meatlover`s pizza topped with more steak. Drink: 2018 - 2022 179770 13.5% XD 750 mL $26.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Jules 2014, Côtes De Provence, Provence A.P., France: A full-bodied, smooth southern French red wine with aromas of black fruit, mocha and toasty oak. Pair with grilled meats. Food pairings: roast breast of veal, sautéed pork tenderloin, turkey pot pie. Drink: 2018 - 2022 566059 13.5% D 750 mL $18.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Chateau Timberlay 2014, Bordeaux Aoc, France: A terrific price for Bordeaux! This robust French red wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes. Toasty oak and fleshy black fruit. Decant 1 hour. Pair with a rare steak. Drink: 2018 - 2022 30072 12.5% XD 750 mL $16.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Bolla Creso 2015, Verona, Veneto I.G.T., Italy: A robust, complex Italian red wine that's a blend of Corvina and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Aromas of black plums, blackberry, toasty oak, tobacco and smoke. Decant 2 hours. Pair with a rare steak. Drink: 2018 - 2023 437020 15.5% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 92/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery The Magician Shiraz Pinot Noir 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: This robust, tasty Niagara red wine a blend of 70% shiraz and 30% pinot noir grapes that are kiln-dried before they're pressed to deepen the wine's flavours. The wine is named "The Magician" with a whimsical label. Supple and smooth, with attractive notes of blackberry and cassis. Some anise and smoke on the finish. Pair with a rare steak. Shiraz Pinot Noir food pairings: grilled flat iron steak, beef rib eye roast, venison tenderloin. Drink: 2018 - 2022 246413 14% XD 750 mL $29.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Bolla Le Origini Amarone Valpolicella Classico 2011, Veneto D.O.C., Italy: A robust, supple Italian red wine with aromas of dark, rich black fruit, anise, smoke and dried herbs. Long finish. Pair with roast beef. Amarone Valpolicella Classico food pairings: grilled lamb, roast of pork, grilled sausages. Drink: 2018 - 2026 204792 16.5% D 750 mL $47.95 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Marchesi de Frescobaldi Tenuta Perano 2015, Chianti Classico, Italy: A savoury, juicy, full-bodied Italian red wine made from the Sangiovese grape. Aromas of black plums, smoke, mocha and dark berries. Terrific balancing acidity for hearty meat dishes or a tangy tomato sauce. Drink: 2018 - 2023 13.5% D 750 mL $25.00 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Marchesi de Frescobaldi Tenuta Perano 2015, Chianti Classico Riserva, Italy: A mouth-watering, full-bodied Chianti Classico Riserva from the respected producer Frescobaldi. Aromas of dar cherry and smoke. Decant 1 hour. Pair with a tangy tomato sauce or spicy sausages. Drink: 2018 - 2025 13% D 750 mL $35.00 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Pinot Noir 2017, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A vibrant Niagara Pinot Noir with mouth-watering flavours of tart cherry and strawberry with smoke. Terrific price for Pinot. Pair with veal. Pinot Noir food pairings: seared tuna, grilled salmon, roasted turkey. Drink: 2018 - 2023 13904 13% D 750 mL $16.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, Niagara River, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Cedar smoke and wild, tart blackberry on the nose and palate of this robust Niagara red wine made from the classic Cabernet Sauvignon grape. Pair with a rare steak. Drink: 2018 - 2023 13% D 750 mL $18.95 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

River Road Cabernet 2017, Niagara River, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A vibrant Niagara red wine made from the classic Cabernet Sauvignon grape. Aromas of blackberries and smoke. Supple and full-bodied. Pair with hamburgers. Drink: 2018 - 2021 457390 13% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery Cabernet Merlot 2017, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A robust, lively Niagara red wine that's a blend of Cabernet and Merlot grapes. Terrific price for this quality. Aromas of fleshy ripe black plums and berries on the nose and palate. Pair with grilled meats or a steak. Cabernet Merlot food pairings: Italian-style pastas, grilled meats, pizza, grilled vegetables, stuffed peppers. Drink: 2018 - 2022 565713 13% XD 750 mL $14.75 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rosés

Domaine Des Carteresses Tavel 2017, Rhône A.C., France: Field fresh raspberries greet you on the nose followed by some watermelon and red grapefruit. This is truly liquid refreshment, with a lovely sunset thrown into the glass as extra. This is a wide-ranging and all-embracing rose that will please many people, but especially you. Tavel food pairings: lox and capers, grilled salmon steak, grilled Ahi tuna. Drink: 2018 - 2021 739474 13% XD 750 mL $18.95 Score: 92/100. August 2018. Best Value Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Gérard Bertrand Perle De Grenache Rosé 2017, Pays D'oc, Languedoc I.G.P., France: A terrific southern French rose with aromas of field strawberries. Dry and refreshing. Enjoy as an aperitif or companion to seafood. Rosé food pairings: grilled-chicken salads, seafood appetizers, seared tuna. Drink: 2018 - 2020 556209 12.5% D 750 mL $18.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Sibling Rivalry Pink 2017, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A vibrant Niagara rose with pretty strawberry aromas and flavours. Light-bodied and refreshing. Perfect for cold chicken sandwiches. Food pairings: planked salmon, seared tuna. Drink: 2018 - 2020 171033 12% MS 750 mL $13.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery Fortune Cabernet Rosé 2017, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A lovely Niagara rose made from the Cabernet grape. Notes of field strawberries and cherry. Racy acidity that makes this off-dry rose both refreshing and delicious. Pair with seafood. Cabernet Rosé food pairings: barbecued chicken, grilled pork, grilled bell pepper sandwiches. Drink: 2018 - 2020 372466 12.5% M 750 mL $18.85 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Best Value Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery The Sun Vidal 2017, Niagara River, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A fascinating Niagara wine! You might think it's rose, but it's more an orange wine, having skin-fermented the vidal grapes. Lovely aromas of orange clementine, white florals and honeysuckle. Perfect as an aperitif or companion to seafood. Drink: 2018 - 2020 408013 10% D 750 mL $24.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Rosé 2017, Niagara, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A vibrant Niagara rose with aromas of wild strawberry. Light-bodied and floral. Packed with zesty flavour and racy acidity for seafood. Drink: 2018 - 2020 613471 12% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Tantalus Vineyards Old Vines Riesling 2015, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: A grogeous BC Riesling with complex aromas of lime, apple blossom, lemon and wet stone. Racy acidity and minerality for seafood and shellfish. Terrific! Drink: 2018 - 2023 179226 13.2% D 750 mL $34.90 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Sacred Hill Wine Company Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Marlborough, New Zealand: A classic New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc with zesyu notes of freshly cut grass, lime and chives. Racy acidity for shellfish. Medium-bodied with no oak. Drink: 2018 - 2020 489112 13% D 750 mL $18.95 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Chardonnay 2016, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A terrific Niagara Chardonnay with seductive aromas of toasted almond, green apple and freshly baked bread. Full-bodied and balanced. Well-priced. Perfect for roast chicken. Chardonnay food pairings: cream-based pasta dishes, poached trout, spring vegetables like sweet peas and fiddleheads. Drink: 2018 - 2021 291211 13% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Santa Rita Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Casablanca Valley, Chile: An amazing wine for the price! Wow. Made from 100% Sauvignon Blanc grapes. Fresh lime lift and grapefruit notes on the nose and palate. Some chives and lemon grass on the finish. Nicely balanced acidity for seafood. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: aperitif or with marinated raw fish, shrimp cocktailm chicken and caviar. Drink: 2018 - 2019 275677 13.5% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A vibrant, fresh Niagara white wine made from the Sauvignon Blanc grape. Crisp and fresh with white melon and grapefruit notes. Finishes with a lovely kick of fresh gooseberry and lime. This wine underwent a cool fermentation in stainless steel tanks to preserve its freshness. Pair with seafood, shellfish, salads and other vegetarian dishes. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: lean, white-fleshed fish with mild flavours, oysters, fresh green salads, goats milk cheeses and chicken pates. Drink: 2018 - 2020 430546 12.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Villa Maria Estate Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Marlborough, New Zealand: A lovely yellow tone in the glass, with green tints. This vibrant New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc offers aromas of lemongrass, chives, grass and peas. Medium-bodied, with crisp, mouth-watering acidity for seafood, poultry and vegetarian dishes. Drink: 2018 - 2020 426601 12.5% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Sibling Rivalry Chardonnay Riesling Gewurztraminer 2016, Niagara, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A terrific spring-fresh white wine with floral aromatics of white flowers of daisies and lilies. A lovely Niagara blend of Chardonnay, Riesling and Gewurztraminer grapes. Pair with mildly spicy dishes and curries, or enjoy as an aperitif. Drink: 2017 - 2021 126144 12% D 750 mL $13.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Southbrook Vineyards Connect White Vidal 2016, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Another terrific vintage of this Niagara organic white wine blend from Southbrook's winemaker Ann Sperling. Pretty, floral white wine blend from Niagara that offers tremendous value and pleasure for the price. Notes of fresh apple blossom and honeydew. This is a blend of aromatic grapes including Vidal (45%) Riesling (43%) and Sauvignon Blanc (12%). Pair with free range chicken, quail and seafood. Drink: 2017 - 2020 249078 9.9% MD 750 mL $15.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Pinot Grigio 2017, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A zesty, refreshing Niagara white wine with notes of white peach, melon white florals. This Niagara Pinot Grigio would be idea with seafood. Pinot Grigio food pairings: light salads, fish or chicken pates. Drink: 2018 - 2020 250217 12.5% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry Of Pelham Estate Chardonnay 2016, Short Hills Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: This full-bodied, rich and layered Niagara white wine made from the classic Chardonnay grapes, offers smoky campfire aromas on the nose that open into ripe peach and pear and golden apple on the palate. Pair with roast chicken and a warm, cuddly sweater. Chardonnay food pairings: crab legs, corn dishes, stuffed chicken breast. Drink: 2017 - 2021 268342 13.5% XD 750 mL $19.95 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Tawse Winery Inc. Sketches Of Niagara Riesling 2015, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Lovely lime vibrancy on the nose and palate of this off-dry Niagara Riesling. Notes of peach and pear and dried apricot. Beautifully made and balanced, and only 10% alcohol (yay). Riesling food pairings: baby greens salad, pork tenderloin, turkey breast, foie gras. Drink: 2017 - 2019 89029 10% M 750 mL $18.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Estate Fumé Sauvignon Blanc 2016, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A smoky, medium-bodied Sauvignon Blanc with bright lemongrass notes. Crisp and fresh with grapefruit aromas on the finish. This wine underwent a cool fermentation in stainless steel tanks to preserve its freshness. Pair with seafood, shellfish, salads and other vegetarian dishes. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: lean, white-fleshed fish with mild flavours, oysters, fresh green salads, goats milk cheeses and chicken pates. Drink: 2016 - 2020 13.5% XD 750 mL $19.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Keint-He Voyageur Riesling 2015, Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A medium-bodied, zesty Ontario Riesling made in Prince Edward County with fruit from Niagara. Racy acidity balances the medium sweetness on the palate. Lovely lime notes and freshness. Pair with seafood. Riesling food pairings: roast chicken, spicy pasta dishes, shrimp tempura, grilled salmon with lemon sauce, duck liver pate. Drink: 2018 - 2024 426825 11% MD 750 mL $19.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Baron De Hoen Réserve Pinot Blanc 2016, Alsace A.C., France: Clean, crisp and fresh northern French white wine made from the classic Alsatian grape Pinot Blanc. Perfect companion to shellfish or serve on its own as a refreshing aperitif. Pinot Blanc food pairings: gravalax, tuna tartare, pan-fried fish. Drink: 2018 - 2020 446419 13.5% XD 750 mL $13.95 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry of Pelham Winery Riesling 2017, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A lovely, refreshing and crisp Niagara white wine made from the classic Riesling grape. Aromas of honey, peach and apricot. A light-bodied, easy-drinking Riesling that will pair beautifully with fresh seafood. Riesling food pairings: roasted glazed ham, goats cheese or white pizza with mozzrella, Romano and vegetable toppings. Drink: 2018 - 2023 268375 10.5% MD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Malivoire Wine Company Guilty Men White 2017, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A lovely, floral Niagara white wine blend of Riesling and Savignon Blanc grapes. Aromas of fresh pear and pear. Made by a much respected producer operating in a gravity-flow winery and farming sustainably. Pair with seafood. Food pairings: poultry, white fish, oysters and other seafood, foie gras, spicy Asian dishes. Drink: 2018 - 2020 192666 12% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

[yellow tail] Sauvignon Blanc 2016, South Eastern Australia, Australia: Terrific value packed into this Yellow Tail Sauvignon Blanc! There's a pale straw hue in the glass. Aromas of lime, grass and chives. Racy acidity for seafood. Drink: 2017 - 2019 524314 11.5% D 750 mL $13.00 Score: 87/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Nugan Estate Third Generation Chardonnay 2016, South Eastern Australia, Australia: A lovely, buttery, full-bodied Australian white wine made from the classic Chardonnay grape. terrific racy acidity that makes this a great match for roast turkey or chicken, or even seafood. Drink: 2018 - 2021 400317 13.5% D 750 mL $13.30 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reif Estate Winery Riesling 2017, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: An aromatic, light-bodied, mouth-watering Niagara Riesling with aromas of lemongrass, lime and white peach. Perfect for shellfish. Riesling food pairings: lighter fare like fish, poultry and vegetarian dishes, spicier food, Chinese or Thai. Drink: 2018 - 2022 111799 12% D 750 mL $13.75 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


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