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Wine Picks August 30, 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

Monte Creek Ranch Winery Pinot Noir 2016, Thompson Valley, British Columbia, Canada: A juicy, medium-bodied, smooth BC red wine made from Pinot Noir. Aromas of fleshy ripe cherries and berries. Pair with veal. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13% D 750 mL $20.00 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Strewn Winery Clay Block Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Lots of mocha and dark chocolate from oak aging on the nose and palate of this robust Niagara Cabernet. Vines are planted in clay and sand soils. Aromas of black fruit, leather, spice and smoke. Pair with grilled meats. Drink: 2018 - 2021 14% D 750 mL $38.00 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Strewn Winery Sandy Block Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A juicy, full-bodied Niagara Cabernet made from vines planted in sandy and clay soils. Aromas of smoke, mocha, black currant, blackberry and spice. Pair with meat casserole. Drink: 2019 - 2023 13.9% D 750 mL $38.00 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Grizzli Winery Reserve Cabernet Franc 2014, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: A gorgeous, blockbuster BC red wine made from the Cabernet Franc grapes. Savoury, juicy and layered. Aromas of fleshy ripe black plums, dark spice and smoke. Pair with grilled meats. Cabernet Franc food pairings: roasted pork, pâté, goat cheese. Drink: 2018 - 2022 14.8% D 750 mL $79.91 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rust Wine Co. Zinfandel 2014, Similkameen Valley, British Columbia V.Q.A., Canada: A juicy, full-bodied BC red wine made from old vine Zinfandel grapes planted in desert rocky soils. Aromas of black cherry and plum with some spice. Pair with barbecued and grilled meats, especially ribs. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13.2% XD 750 mL $25.00 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Bartier Bros Cerqueira Vineyard Syrah 2016, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: A gorgeous BC red wine made from the classic Syrah grape. Aromas of fleshy ripe black plums, dark berries, spice and smoke. Supple and smooth. Pair with grilled lamb. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13.7% XD 750 mL $30.00 Score: 92/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

La Frenz Estate Winery Grand Total Reserve 2015, Naramata Bench, British Columbia, Canada: A gorgeous BC red wine blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Aromas of fleshy ripe blackberries and dark plums, with smoke and spice. Layered and complex. Pair with a rare steak. Drink: 2018 - 2024 15.8% XD 750 mL $45.00 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

The Hatch Screaming Frenzy Meritage 2016, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada: A juicy, full-bodied BC red wine blend of Bordeaux grape varieties (ie Cabernet, Merlot). Aromas of cassis, wild blackberry, smoke and graphite. Pair with a pepper steak. Decant 1 hour. Drink: 2018 - 2022 14.6% D 750 mL $25.00 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Black Forest Cuvee Noir, Baden, Germany: A non-vintage blend of red grapes grown in Baden, Germany's warmest and southernmost winemaking region. Aromas of dark cherry and smoke. Pair with grilled chicken. Drink: 2018 - 2020 538975 13.5% D 750 mL $9.95 Score: 86/100. August 2018. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Castello Monaci Artas Primitivo 2016, Puglia Igt, Italy: Lots of campfire smoke on the nose and palate from oak aging on this robust Italian red wine made from the Primitivo grape. Pair with meat lovers' pizza. Drink: 2018 - 2022 124925 13.5% D 750 mL $25.00 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Mt. Boucherie Estate Winery Summit Winemaker's Reserve Cabernet / Merlot 2014, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia V.Q.A., Canada: A stunningly great BC red wine blend that is the flagship wine for Mt Boucherie winery. Aromas of cassis, black plum, smoke, graphite and anise. Pair with a rare steak and decant 1-2 hours. Cabernet / Merlot food pairings: Beef Stroganoff with Cremini & Porcini Mushrooms to be the perfect pairing. The wine's Tannin's is slightly mellowed by the meat that simply melts in your mouth, along with complementing flavors of mushrooms in a rich sauce. Drink: 2018 - 2022 14% D 750 mL $50.00 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Stoneboat Vineyards Rock Opera Pinotage 2014, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia V.Q.A., Canada: This robust, supple BC red wine is made from 100% estate-grown Pinotage grapes, whose vines were planted in the Black Sage Gravel Bar. The wine was aged 15 months in oak barrels. Only 782 cases produced. Aromas of mocha and dark chocolate on the nose with ripe sweet blackberries on the palate. Pair with grilled meats. Drink: 2018 - 2021 13.9% D 750 mL $25.00 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Stoneboat Vineyards Rock Opera Reserve Pinotage 2014, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia V.Q.A., Canada: This full-bodied, smooth reserve BC red wine is made from 100% estate-grown Pinotage grapes, whose vines were planted in the Black Sage Gravel Bar. The wine was aged 15 months in oak barrels. Only 500 cases produced. Aromas of cedar smoke, dried herbs, smoke, espresso and dark fruit on the nose and palate. Pair with a rare steak. Drink: 2018 - 2022 14% D 750 mL $35.00 Score: 92/100. August 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Adamo Estate Winery Wismer Foxcroft Vineyard Cabernet Franc 2015, St David's Bench, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A full-bodied, deeply flavoured Niagara Cabernet Franc. The cool climate shows in the edgy acidity which is perfect for tangy meat sauces and dishes. Aromas of fleshy black plum, smoke and dried herbs. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13.6% D 750 mL $30.00 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

8th Generation Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016, Summerland, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada: A lovely, luscious, smooth BC Pinot Noir. Aromas of fleshy ripe dark cherry and berry notes, with spice and smoke. Lovely. Pair with veal. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13.7% D 750 mL Score: 92/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Township 7 Vineyards & Winery Okanagan Reserve 7 2015, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada: A robust BC red wine blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc grapes. The winemaker imposes low yields of 2/3 tons per acre versus the average of 4-6. Dark red hue in the glass. Aromas of tanned leather, dark berries, smoke, cigar box, dried herbs and graphite. Long finish. Highly recommended. Pair with a rare steak. Food pairings: grilled bison steaks, creamy gorgonzola cheese. Drink: 2018 - 2022 14.7% D 750 mL $30.00 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Lariana Cellars Fifteen 2015, Osoyoos, British Columbia, Canada: A full-bodied, deeply flavoured BC red wine blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Carmenere grapes. Velvet texture. Aromas of mocha, black plums, dark berries and toasty oak. Pair with a rare steak. Drink: 2018 - 2022 14.7% D 750 mL Score: 91/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Icellars Estate Winery Icel Vineyard Cabernet Franc 2016, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: The 2016 vintage was one of the warmest and driest on record for the Niagara region, and it shows in the richness and depth of this wine. The Cabernet Franc is layered and complex with aromas of dark plums, toasty oak, pencil led and smoke. The grapes are grown in the Wismer Foxcroft Vineyard. Long finish. Pair with grilled lamb. Drink: 2018 - 2025 14.1% D 750 mL $50.00 Score: 94/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Icellars Estate Winery Wismer Edgerock Vineyard Syrah 2016, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A gorgeous Niagara Syrah with Pinot-like finesse, but richer, deeper and darker. Aromas of dark spice, black cherry, dark berries, smoke and violets. Supple and smooth. Pair with veal or grilled chicken. Syrah food pairings: chicken Kiev, meat-filled pasta with rich tomato sauce, grilled pork chops, gourmet burgers. Drink: 2018 - 2024 13.7% XD 750 mL $42.00 Score: 93/100. August 2018. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rosés

Adamo Estate Winery Gamay Rosé 2017, St David's Bench, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A spritely, vibrant Ontario rose made from the Gamay grape. Aromas of pink grapefruit, citrus and tiny strawberry. Racy acidity for seafood. Terrific! Drink: 2018 - 2020 13% D 750 mL $20.00 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Top Rated Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rust Wine Co. Mount Boucherie Vineyard Zweigelt 2017, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia V.Q.A., Canada: A lovely, crisp BC rose made from Pinot Noir grapes grown in clay loan with glacial till and volcanic rock. Aromas of cherry and strawberry with spice. Terrific on its own or as a companion to seafood. Drink: 2018 - 2020 12.8% D 750 mL $13.99 Score: 88/100. August 2018. Best Value Rosé Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Westcott Lillias Chardonnay 2017, Vinemount Ridge, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: A lovely, vibrant Niagara Chardonnay. Pure fruit and minerality with aromas of honey blossom, toasted almond, golden apple. Viscous but not heavy. Racy acidity for halibut or sole. Chardonnay food pairings: pan fired scallops, spinach and pepper jack stuffed chicken, beef bourguignon, pork tenderloin, toasted ravioli served with Alfredo sauce. Drink: 2018 - 2021 425322 12.9% XD 750 mL $20.00 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Strewn Winery American Oak Chardonnay 2016, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: This is one of three wines made from the same lot of Chardonnay grapes that were then split into three parcels and vinified in three different types of oak, this one being 100% American oak. At 14.8% ABV, this is a heavy-hitter in terms of weight and depth of flavour with guava, pineapple and and melon. American oak imparts notes of coconut, vanilla spice, butterscotch, caramel, and smoke. Viscous and rich. Pair with rich chicken dishes and cream sauces. Chardonnay food pairings: buttered cold lobster sandwiches, roast duck, cold turkey sandwiches. Drink: 2018 - 2021 405530 14.8% XD 750 mL $23.95 Score: 89/100. August 2018. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Strewn Winery French Oak Terroir Chardonnay 2016, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: This is one of three wines made from the same lot of Chardonnay grapes that were then split into three parcels and vinified in three different types of oak, this one being 100% French oak. At 14.8% ABV, this is a heavy-hitter in terms of weight and depth of flavour however, it has less tropical fruit than the American oak version and more orchard fruit such as golden and red apples. French oak imparts notes of vanilla and smoke. Pair with roast chicken or veal. Terroir Chardonnay food pairings: buttered cold lobster sandwiches, roast duck, cold turkey sandwiches. Drink: 2018 - 2021 618553 14.8% XD 750 mL $23.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Strewn Winery Canadian Oak Chardonnay 2016, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: This is one of three wines made from the same lot of Chardonnay grapes that were then split into three parcels and vinified in three different types of oak, this one being 100% Canadian oak. At 14.8% ABV, this is a heavy-hitter in terms of weight and depth of flavour with guava and and melon. Canadian oak imparts notes of coconut, vanilla spice, and smoke. Viscous and rich. Pair with roast turkey or chicken. Chardonnay food pairings: buttered cold lobster sandwiches, roast duck, cold turkey sandwiches. Drink: 2018 - 2021 14.8% XD 750 mL $23.95 Score: 90/100. August 2018. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Mt. Boucherie Estate Winery Gewurztraminer 2017, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia V.Q.A., Canada: A gorgeously balanced BC white wine made from the aromatic Gewurztraminer grape. Lower alcohol than the previous vintage, but just as delicious. This rich and full-bodied features lovely aromas of rose petals, baking spices and lychees. Pair with mild to medium curries. Drink: 2018 - 2022 13.6% XD 750 mL $15.99 Score: 91/100. August 2018. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


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