Natalie MacLean - delicious wine picks and pairings

10 Wines When You've Got Extra Time

Natalie MacLean

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Maxwell Silver Hammer Shiraz 2008, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia: Vintages Wine Panel: This family-owned winery celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2009, an impressive milestone. Aged for 18 months in seasoned American oak, this Shiraz showcases juicy black fruit, mocha and spice flavours. Generous, silky smooth and with good depth of flavour, this red is ready to drink. And yes, the name is a tribute to The Beatles’ song. My note: A smoky, coffeed nose with black fruit and a lick of oak on the finish. Full-bodied and dense. Very tasty! 89599 14% XD 750 mL  $19.95 Score: 89/100. February 20, 2010 Full Review
d'Arenberg The Laughing Magpie Shiraz Viognier 2008, Mclaren Vale, South Australia, Australia: Who’s laughing now? You, if you bought this wine while you could. Minty-blackberry goodness oozes from the glass. Full-bodied and rich with a lift from the Viognier in the mid-palate. Terrific work. Drink: 2011-2015. 936971 14.50% XD 750 mL  $29.95 Score: 91/100. May 14, 2011 Full Review
Southbrook Vineyards Whimsy Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, V.Q.A., Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada: Vintages Wine Panel: Ann Sperling, who has dubbed this wine The Winemaker's Palette, has "painted" a lovely wine from the superb 2007 vintage in Niagara. Aromas of raspberry, boysenberry, tilled earth and woodsmoke are front and centre. The palate is dry and fruity, yet fine tannins come through for balance. This Cab Sauv, from the great 2007 vintage, is beautifully constructed. Enjoy it tonight or cellar it for up to three years. My note: Blackberry liqueur richness and depth with full-on hedonistically ripe fruit and a dark spice finish. Hard to believe it’s only 12% alcohol, but it’s also a pleasant surprise for such flavor. Drink: 2011-2015. 260281 12% XD 750 mL  $33.95 Score: 90/100. October 15, 2011 Full Review
Burrowing Owl Estate Winery Pinot Noir 2008, V.Q.A., Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada: Vintages Wine Panel: Pale to medium ruby with aromas of red cherry, smoke, wet earth, plum and cinnamon. Quite dry and fruity with fresh acid all around. Good texture here with nice fruit replays. Decant and enjoy, or cellar it 2-4+ years. My note: Sweetly ripe red and black cherry with some raspberry background notes. Lusciously rich and smooth. Full-bodied and concentrated. One of Canada’s best pinots. Drink: 2011-2016. 556613 13% XD 750 mL  $38.95 Score: 90/100. December 10, 2011 Full Review
Dirty Laundry Vineyard Bordello Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2008, V.Q.A., Similkameen Valley, British Columbia, Canada: Vintages Wine Panel: The origins of Dirty Laundry Vineyards’ name are delightfully unseemly. In the early 20th century, the town of Summerland was a centre for fur-traders and gold-miners. A laundry was opened to clean the clothes of the men who came through town. The owner quickly realized his back rooms could have another use, as a bawdy-house and gambling den. The winery’s name is a tribute to this unsavoury history. Their Bordello red is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The 2008 is a big, flavourful, age-worthy wonder that is bound to attract awards and acclaim, as the 2007 vintage did. My note: Big and bruising, this saucy wine delivers a punch. Dark fruit, smoke and full-bodied weight. Smooth texture. Pricey, but you gotta pay for love. Drink: 2011-2016. 219717 14.90% D 750 mL  $53.95 Score: 90/100. February 5, 2011 Full Review
Flourish Wines Riesling Vidal 2010, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada: Lovely tangerine essence and apricot blossoms in this spring-fresh wine! Brilliant as an aperitif, or charming companion to many dishes. Perfect for your next book club gathering or girls' night in. 988262 11.60% D 750 mL  $10.95 Score: 88/100. March 28, 2011 Full Review
Southern Cross Reserve Escapade Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, W.O., Bottelary-Stellenbosch, South Africa: Good acidity with balanced richness of black fruit on the palate. Full-bodied and fairly smooth, though 1-2 hours decanting will help. This is a heavy hitter that will surprise and please those who like Californian cabernets. 267211 13.50% XD 750 mL  $17.95 Score: 88/100. April 28, 2012 Full Review
Kenwood Vineyards Jack London Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, Sonoma Valley, California, United States: The wolf head icon on the Jack London wines comes from the cover of the novel, The Call of the Wild, written by former owner of this vineyard and California author, Jack London. This Cabernet has fiercely attractive black cherry, dark spices, dried herbs, and yes, a savagely good finish. It's got a grip from robust tannins so age it or decant for two hours if you can't. Plush dark fleshy berries but solid structure and balance. Drink at your next book club meeting. This will will come out in Vintages October 19, 2011. Drink: 2010-2018. 470500 14.50% XD 750 mL  $34.95 Score: 92/100. June 6, 2011 Luscious Lamb Wine Full Review

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