Tuesday, November 01, 2016

November 2016 wines - 11 Tasted of 11

Fall Colours, Erin, Ontario

Cheers, Ww

LINEUP: Reds, Whites and Bubblies

  • Wakefield Jaraman Cabernet Sauvignon 2013,  91-1  --  V, Clare + Coonawarra Valleys, #142398  $24.95
  • Sledgehammer Zinfandel 2014, 90-2  --  G, California, USA,  #230466  $16.95
  • Heirloom The Velvet Fog Pinot Noir 2015, 87  --  V, Adelaide Hills, South Australia,  #464693  $24.95
    • ZIG ZAG ZIN Zinfandel 2013, 86  --  V, Ukiah, California, #039982   $22.95
    • Montecillo Crianza Tempranillo 2011, 84a  --   G, Rioja, Spain, #144493  *13.10
    • de Bortoli GS Pinot Noir 2015,  82  --  V, Yarra Valley, Australia, #015511 $19.95

    • Jean-Michel Sorbe Quincy 2014, 86  --  V,  Loire, France, #608877   $17.25
    • Famiglia Bianchi Chardonnay 2015, 86  --  V,  Mendoza, Argentina, #001461  $17.95
    • Mount Brown Estates Pinot Gris 2015, 86  --  V,  Waipara, New Zealand, #466037  $18.95
    • La Cala Vermentina di Sardegna 2015, 85  --  V,  Sardinia, Italy, #627067  $15.95

    • Bohigas Reserva Brut Cava NV, 86  --  V,  Penedes, Spain, #401216  $17.95  


    (V- Vintages, G-General, O-Other, r-v  -  Rating-Value, a - aerated, c - cellar, NR - Not recommended)  


    HEIRLOOM THE VELVET FOG PINOT NOIR 2015 , Adelaide Hills, South Australia, 13.5%  XD  2g/L,  #464693  $24.95  (Tasted November 2, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on September 17, 2016.  My notes:  Swirling lays a moderate film that sheds a curtain of swollen tears. The first sip combines mild aromas of fresh earth, sour cherries and stewed rhubarb. Sharp on the tongue and tangy from sip to swallow this needs a buffet: cheeses, sliced Italian meats and roasted mushrooms, rather than tasting solo. Quaff to balance brightness with fruit. Also pair with roast lamb, pork or a savoury stew. Those preferring a prominent tartness would enjoy this red. I suggest decanting, aerating or opening a day ahead. 87

    FAMIGLIA BIANCHI CHARDONNAY 2015, Mendoza, Argentina, 14.0% D  9g/L, #001461  $17.95  (Tasted November 3, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on May 14, 2016. My notes: Mid yellow and a thin film flowing delayed tears introduces this delicate chard. Chilled to 11oC a frigid nose releases a refreshing aroma partly hiding a fragile orange blossom and passion fruit scent.  Medium-bodied, tangy, youthful flavours stretches a verbal interpretation. Character builds with each sip. A partner to green salads or strawberry, white grapes, mango and egg custard combos. Serve with grilled trout or black cod. A dry drink now - keep below 14oC.  86

    WAKEFIELD JARAMAN CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2013  , Clare + Coonawarra Valleys, 14.5%  D  6g/L,  #142398  $24.95  (Tasted November 6, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on October 1, 2016. My notes:  A deep ruby, cherry & charcoal hued expressing the density of the crushed grape. A moderate film covers the glass, sticks then accumulates sufficient volume to round a rim and drop a veil of tears. The bite of blackberry balances the freshness of the fruit. A pronounced bite comes on the first sip... as well as a lasting layer of tannin as a finish. Primarily a rare beef red especially for those that enjoy excitement mellowed by their prime rib.  91

    ZIG ZAG ZIN ZINFANDEL 2013, Ukiah, California, 14.5%  D  10g/L,  #039982   $22.95  (Tasted November 7, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on August 6, 2016.  My notes:    A tinge of purple changes the ruby to a more regal tint.  The film rapidly coats the glass dropping a sheet followed by columns of tears. An appealing smooth silk touch from the first sip, extra dry and warm on the initial swallow with 'staying power'. A purple plum and earth-edged  aroma with sociable acid to balance a latent freshness. Have with a buffet of seared appetizers, bacon wrapped petit potatoes or stuffed mushrooms or well done to rare prime rib. Aeration flattens body and finish so is not recommended. Past it? 86

    SLEDGEHAMMER ZINFANDEL 2014, California, USA,  14.9%  D  13g/L, #230466  $16.95  (Tasted November 10, 2016)

    A General listing:  My notes:  'Big, bold and persistent' according to the label.  The smoothness is illustrated by a firm film and rounded buildup on the glass. Tears are slow to form clinging together then separating as single columns. Colour is a deep ruby and flavours of blackberry, raspberry and ripe cherries blend together evenly. A clean tartness is balanced by a touch of sugar and ripe fullness. A swallow washes then coats the palate with a light chalk. The sweetness is noticeable - one that encourages nibbling and discussion although suits pairing with meaty entrees: grilled ribs back or side, prime rib and savoury flank steak. Consume soon after purchase - may cellar several years. 90

    MOUNT BROWN ESTATES PINOT GRIS 2015, Waipara, New Zealand, 13.5%  D  4g/L,  #466037  $18.95  (Tasted November 2, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on October 15, 2016.  Rated 91 by Sam Kim   (November 2015).  My notes: A slightly tarnished mid yellow that leaves a thin film hanging from a fragmenting rim. Aromas of pear with a hint of fresh caramel gives this a distinct character - something to get used to. Multiple sips form a silk lining, adds a warm finish and prolongs the first flavours. Pinot Gris sippers will take a moment to sense each not-so-subtle difference - or pair with grilled scallops or shrimp and cheesy pastas. Sweet and succulent now with potential to develop more intensity over several years. 86

    BOHIGAS RESERVA BRUT CAVA NV, Penedes, Spain, 12.0%  XD  4g/L, #401216  $17.95  (Tasted October 23, 2016)

    Released by Vintages (unknown).  My notes:  On pouring, foam rises with a lively effervescence. An aroma of mild grasses and slight Bosc pear rises from a crystal mid yellow, a playground for continuous streams of fine bubbles. Quaffing compresses the spritz bursting and forcing bubbles into a tangy frenzy then swallowing heightens the dryness, parching the throat to start a short finish. Keep chilled (10oC).  Serve with a party buffet - plates of garlic shrimp, Italian meats, bacon wrapped asparagus or scallops, hard cheeses. crackers and hummus. Shockingly dry for a toasting bubbly. Bottle weight is 1.75lbs.  Drink now.  86

    LA CALA VERMENTINO DI SARDEGNA 2015, Sardinia, Italy, 14.0% XD 2g/L, #627067  $15.95  (Tasted November 14, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on October 15, 2016.  My notes: Produced from 100% Vermentino grapes. Produced from 100% Vermentino grapes. A bold lemon presence brightens and broadens a straw and apple scent - delay the sniff for a delicate floral note. The first sip says lemon balancing a tart crabapple to prolong a sharp extra dry finish. An added mineral accent suits a variety of shellfish done in a buttery sauce; scallops, shrimp or mussels - also grilled sole, cod, pistachio crusted trout and clam chowder. Not quite a solo social sipper but satisfying with a mixed buffet of hard cheeses, Italian meat 'coins or cubes' and greens. 85

    JEAN-MICHEL SORBE QUINCY 2014  , Loire, France, 12.5%  D  4g/L,  #608877  $17.25  (Tasted December 13, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on April 30, 2016.  My notes: A fragile yellow with a delicate apricot aroma slowly accumulating in the bowl. A swirl lays a thin film that quickly fragments from the rim and shows tiny scatterings where tears normally flow. A sauvignon blanc on the vegetable side than fruit from the first swallow – maintain at 11oC for a refreshing sipper or seafood companion. Flavours advance well at the start only fading after transferring a touch of sweet, of silk and luscious, balanced with a reserved dryness, light-bodied. A drink now. 86

    DE BORTOLI G.S. PINOT NOIR 2015, Yarra Valley, Australia, 13.5% XD  2g/L,  #015511  $19.95  (Tasted December 23, 2016)

    Released by Vintages on October 15, 2016.  My notes: There’s a slight smoke to a light cherry nose. The film sticks then drops as a veil laying down a lacy pattern. Light to the lips with an expanding cherry flavour and dry and warm with a touch of sweet hidden behind a delicate silk finish. I’m tempted to drop an ice cube or serve slightly chilled. Match with chilled strawberries or sliced Italian prosciutto, fresh oysters or a thin tomato gazpacho . Plan as a sampler in a tasting of Pinot Noirs.  82

    MONTECILLO CRIANZA  TEMPRANILLO 2011, Rioja, Spain, 13.5% D  6g/L,  #144493   *$13.10  (Tasted December 24, 2016)

    A General listing reduced from $15.10 until November 6, 2016.  My notes:  A blend of native Rioja grapes. My notes:  A blend of native Rioja grapes. Pours a see-through but deep cherry skin colour as well as showing a firm film forming a rounded rim before dropping a ring of tears. Has an aroma of woody fruit with a touch of smoke. The first sip bites the palate then lays a drying tannin and the smooth taste of cherry. An acceptable sipper unless your guests prefer a sign of fresh fruit and/or a touch of sweet. Aerating or decanting mellows a slight bitterness and is recommended. Have with a cheese table and hors d’oeuvres or with various red pepper/tomato based Spanish or Italian fare. Already aged five years and likely at the end of cellaring. A drink now. 84a