Uncorked-Wine and Spirits Appreciation

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rfrf
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Re: Pearl Morrisette

Postby rfrf » Sat Dec 02, 2017 8:11 am

Kish84 wrote:
Belgian wrote:
Kish84 wrote:I'm curious, have you had any Pearl Morisette? I've heard nothing but good things about them, but I tend to stay away from/haven't liked many Ontario reds.

Interesting. I would be all over this if I were near the Niagara sometime. Thanks!! And I recently had an amazing VQA red at an event, wish I could recall this somehow better than expected wine. Ontario asks a lot of its consumers in terms of the faith they demand for wines that aren't necessarily that affordable, but I have faith in the many good movements here, even the reds particularly Pinot Noir - some Vintners are a bit of a believer's cult maybe, God bless them if they have well-heeled advocates & some others I believe are true salt of the earth. Visiting a bunch of Ontario wineries is fun and edifying.

You can order Pearl Morisette from their website. I've been tempted to get a bottle, but without having tried any I feel I could probably get a similar wine thats comparable or better from another country for less.


the gamay they have up there now for $30 is really to my taste. best thing to do is hunt down glass pours - places like archive and midfield in the west end, and im sure some east end places have them by the glass. that new wine bar on college where bar italia used to be, 'mad crush', allows you to try anything by the glass if you commit to a 2 glass minimum, which is cool. the PM cuvee blu which is their skin fermented white (a la 'orange wine') is really funky, cider like. They are doing different things.

minimum order from PM is 6 bottles, if you do order, i'd take 2 bottles of gamay :)
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Re: Uncorked-Wine and Spirits Appreciation

Postby Belgian » Sat Dec 02, 2017 7:55 pm

rfrf wrote:
kish wrote:...You can order Pearl Morisette from their website. I've been tempted to get a bottle, but without having tried any I feel I could probably get a similar wine...

...minimum order from PM is 6 bottles, if you do order, i'd take 2 bottles of gamay :)


Me too. We are truly spoiled for excellent well-priced Cru de Beaujolais at LCBO * (Moulin à vent, Morgon, Brouilly are 3 of the ten 'Cru' or 'Growth' AOCs) but if PM's Gamay is really that special (and I generally prefer to pre-sample anything) I'd go in for a 2-bottle co-purchase as well. $30 for Gamay is pretty high given what I've said but you really need to factor costs, laboriousness of method & production scale in the justification of price to acquire some special stuff.

* Beaujolais tends to have consistently excellent Gamay wine production as compared to the finicky Pinot Noir 'heartbreak grape' of the greater Burgundy area (Beaujolais is in fact within Burgundy). They don't seem to be hard wines to make well, but I may be wrong there.
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Spanish Sparkler for Sipping

Postby Belgian » Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:28 pm

Vilarnau Brut Reserva Cava

Very lauded Cava / Spanish Sparkling Wine that has won best of both categories for that country. Vilarnau is sleek and steely with some good acid and moderate dryness, some taut pale orchard fruit, bready yeast-tinged effects, nothing too complex of course but very respectable with a bit of body to it. The cherry and berry fruit emerges with later sipping. For a tiny bit more oomph you might go another seven bucks for something like Perle d'Aurore Crémant from Burgundy. Both good-value price points.

Real Champagne-style bottle fermentation for fifteen bucks, and I like the grapes Vilarnau used. Be sure to chill for an hour before opening or the flavors won't all integrate.

Bonus: pretty bottle wrap with art work suitable for holiday gifting. A fun wine for weekday gourmet pizza or Sunday Brunch eggs and smoked salmon. perhaps New Years. Sparkling wine can be topped off with 1/3 St Germain liqueur for a classic cocktail, of course here in Ontario Champagne is very pricey so try with the Vilarnau.
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Again: Champagne-less Crémant...

Postby Belgian » Tue Dec 05, 2017 7:03 pm

Belgian wrote:
Belgian wrote:Louis Bouillot Perle d'Aurore Brut Rosé Crémant de Bourgogne. Good autolysis character with creamy brioche flavors over the tart-sweet cherry fruit.

Another one of these beauties from perhaps 8-9 months ago. Incredible stuff for just north of twenty bucks. If you see it back here soon drop for half a case & invite me to the party to thank me..

It's back! Got a few more.

Having my last one of the previous purchase - yikes 2015 bottling! It shows really no sign of fading, easily one of the best sparkling Champagne-like wines just over 20 bucks here.

If you try this chilled & you may wonder why you don't treat yourself this well more often. While the Cava is very good, this is definitely gooder.
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Re: Xinomavro means "acid black" in Greek

Postby Belgian » Wed Dec 06, 2017 6:36 pm

Belgian wrote:Domaine Karydas Xinomavro 2012

This is fantastic. Xino Red from Greece/Macedonia is slowly being discovered as a fairly serious wine for its price category and compared to some Barolo or Barbareso-style Piedmont wines. The time to take advantage is now. Here is a solid 2012, a vintage that is becoming approachable more quickly than the bigger and tougher 2011.
Aroma seems to offer dried grapes, dried black olives, Mediterranean herbs and kelply ocean notes. Taste has solid red berry fruits and good tannic dryness plus that salty kelp and a bit of rich sundried tomato, plus the meaty and sanguine notes so typical of Italian Nebbiolo. Alcohol is well-integrated, maintaining a pleasant vibrancy and freshness along with the wine's sleek but evident power...

Another one of these, got some extras today at Greenwood LC. Definitely punching above its weight, and approachable now.
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Tempranillo Spain

Postby Belgian » Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:07 pm

Terra d'Uro Finca La Rana Toro 2012

This is incredible. Grape 'blend' is 100% Tinta de Toro, AKA Tempranillo and this is a character wine that is still approachable. The light French oak toast evenly compliments the (not too sweet) ripe blackberry. A bit of black tea and herbs, mineral, great balance. This is great alongside butter cast iron seared Beretta strip loin.

Spain is becoming discovered. Here's another Tinta de Toro I saw today, Yaso Tinta de Toro 2012.
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Spain Tempranillo + Garanacha (Grenache)

Postby Belgian » Sun Dec 31, 2017 8:08 pm

Luis Cañas Crianza 2014

Mostly Tempranillo with 5% Grenache, aged in 70/30 French & American oak. Not bad at all, good dark wild berry and some garrigue herbs, good acids and dryness. It's a bit wooly and the first few sips not quite as integrated as the Terra d'Uro opened yesterday which still compares favorably today. But Cañas is also a younger wine and might benefit from some air and cooling off in fridge, so I won't judge it too quick. There's also some ripe sour cherry emerging, and oak spice & vanillin, totally decent if not my first pick of the Spanish beauties of late.

Want to try the Yaso Toro next, even though the LC price is insane.
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Wine This Week

Postby Belgian » Fri Jan 05, 2018 8:41 pm

Belgian (Dec 2014) wrote:Domaine De Bila-Haut OCCULTUM LAPIDEM 2012 Syrah-Grenache-Carignan Blend. Midi France
- the smoky-tarry and herbal/mulberry notes are interesting, a lot of berry depth and structure to this Northern Rhone-style red blend from the Midi. Big long flavors of black fruit set off with just enough fine tannins and acidity to keep it punchy.

Right now another 2012 OCCULTUM LAPIDEM. Three years after this ^ note it's still very solid, but definitely time to drink it. Have a 2014 lurking.

The 2012 Karydas Xino this week was also good. Nice and dry.

A Les Amouriers Signature Vacqueyras 2012 was just a beauty, not a powerhouse vintage but way better than its under-$22 price.
The currently-available 2014 Amouriers "Les Genestes" is a different, premium bottling, and pricey. I am hoping for a price drop as happened with the 2012 Signature when it didn't sell as quick as hoped. Beautiful South Rhone Grenache character.

We are currently braising a nice chunk of Beretta Farms blade roast using up some old unfinished red wine in the fridge plus some EMU Port, herbs and aromatic vegetables. It smells fantastic.
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Re: Uncorked-Wine and Spirits Appreciation

Postby Craig » Fri Jan 05, 2018 9:36 pm

I still have three of the 2012s. Better get drinking.
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Yaso Toro

Postby Belgian » Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:39 pm

Yaso Tinta de Toro 2012 Tempranillo

Belgian wrote:Want to try the Yaso Toro next, even though the LC price is insane.

This is Spanish beauty is pretty nice! Notable oak accent at the front yet not too forward, and that indescribable playfulness of the Tempranillo grape which in this region is just called Tinto del Toro which I gather means 'darker red' VS Rojo, which is lighter red. Spain has a color system for red wine, man!

Has a marvelous spiciness (white pepper, sandalwood) and herbs and vanilla and sour-sweet red berry, blackcurrant, very complete palate right from opening the bottle. Very solid dry tannic grip which is here very enjoyable under the silky-tart fruit and vanilla-spice oak. Again, modern freshness-meets-Old World style. Note: it really has to be drunk same day as opened.
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Re: Tempranillo Spain

Postby GtownRandy » Wed Jan 10, 2018 11:16 am

Belgian wrote:Terra d'Uro Finca La Rana Toro 2012

This is incredible. Grape 'blend' is 100% Tinta de Toro, AKA Tempranillo and this is a character wine that is still approachable. The light French oak toast evenly compliments the (not too sweet) ripe blackberry. A bit of black tea and herbs, mineral, great balance. This is great alongside butter cast iron seared Beretta strip loin.

Spain is becoming discovered. Here's another Tinta de Toro I saw today, Yaso Tinta de Toro 2012.


I just got 3 bottles of terra d’uro at a Milton lcbo. On clearance for $13.35 - $5.60 off! They had lots of clearance vintages for $5 - $6 off. Some as low as $11 - $12 each
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Re: Tempranillo Spain

Postby Belgian » Wed Jan 10, 2018 11:50 am

GtownRandy wrote:


I just got 3 bottles of terra d’uro at a Milton lcbo. On clearance for $13.35 - $5.60 off! They had lots of clearance vintages for $5 - $6 off. Some as low as $11 - $12 each

That's a deal, almost like American prices. Maybe I'll find a few.

I'm returning a few bottles of the Yaso; while it's good when opened I found that the wine oxidized or the flavor disintegrated in less than a day.
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Veneto, Northern Italy

Postby Belgian » Thu Jan 11, 2018 10:05 pm

Cesari Adesso Merlot d'Italia Merlot (2016 not 2015)

This was the 92-rated 7.95 Merlot in The Toronto Star (Oct 2017), except it's really not - its the 2016. The 2015 apparently sold furiously to value-starved consumers whose eyes shone with bright hope it might be all dat and I never snagged a bottle for all my weak efforts.
As the youthful (for a red) '16 vintage suggests this is a light and approachable Merlot with some pleasant acidity and soft cherry-berry fruit. On opening I don't much care for the gassy, junky nose. There's a little fruit and herb there as it opens. The palate is a bit indefinite, and the finish has that nice lingering cherry-berry but behind it something junky and compost pail-like. Late finish is slightly chemical-bitter, astringent like vine stems.

It's no bargain. We don't get bargains here, we only occasionally get flukes. You can do way better than this for a few dollars more, but of course that's not always easy when you look around at the LCBO, hmm: Les Jamelles wines or Chilean reds on sale? Is Vieille Ferme really any good? Why can't we have nice inexpensive Spanish things?

Anyway. I feel very inclined to stew or braise some hearty cuts of beef with this Northern Italian red stuff. It was kind of academic trying it and sometimes these 'misses' are great for a Coq au Vin or something. Definitely won't drink it.
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Grenache-driven Southern Rhone Lirac

Postby Belgian » Thu Jan 11, 2018 10:34 pm

Alain Jaume Clos de Sixte Lirac 2015

A powerful and nuance-loaded red from the southern Rhone. Now showing gorgeous berry and at this stage some tannic dryness. I think it will age well. Long replays of cherries, dark wild berries (blackberry, blueberry) and herbs, enticing tarry and licorice notes. The acidity firm and mouth-watering. Salty sanguine and meaty umami notes, even minerally sundried tomato. It's so nice and layered in its sassy dry French way.

A red that opens slowly at this stage but reveals more with each sip, and with the ripening tannins I think there's a undisputed winner here for drinking or cellar lay-down. This is an art form, not a commodity wine.

50% Grenache, 35% Syrah, 15% Mourvèdre
Manual Harvest, Certified Organic cultivation
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Rich PX Sherry, givaway price

Postby Belgian » Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:11 pm

Alvear Pedro Ximenez De Añada 2014 (375ml)

Wow, now THIS one is worth grabbing a few of. It is unctuous and sweet, Sugar Content: 415 g/l but utterly packed with flavor and a massive palate and a long finish of fruit and dried fig/raisin. Apricot acidity and toffee creaminess.

Deep gold-reddy amber coat. It rolls around slowly in the glass and grabs the surface with slick legs. If you don't know real Sherry / Xerez this is insane value and a good intro to a serious wine style. You aren't paying Sauternes prices in this part of Europe and I wonder how a decade or two of ageing would transform this big-boned vintage Xerez.

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Last edited by Belgian on Fri Jan 26, 2018 12:22 am, edited 3 times in total.
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