Monday, January 01, 2018

January 2018 wines

January 2018 wines: - 20 tasted of 20

Mutts & Jesse at the Lakeshore Leash-free

LINEUP: Reds, Whites, Rosés and Bubblies

December Dusk - 12/4/2017
  • Carnivor Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, 91-2 - G, California, USA, #392647 $17.95
  • Santa Julia Magna Malbec Cabernet 2016, 88-1 -- G, Mendoza, Argentina, #499699 $14.95
  • The Lackey Shiraz 2016, 88-1 -- V, South Australia, Australia, #005199 $17.95
  • Thorn-Clarke Barossa Grenache Shiraz 2016, 84 -- G, South Australia, #499616, $17.95 
  • Ravenswood Vintners Blend Old Vine Zinfandel 2015, 84 -- G, California, USA, #359257 $18.95 
  • Rockway Vineyards Pinot Noir VQA Niagara Peninsula 2014  82 -- V, Niagara, Ontario, #498790 $16.25
  • Santa Julia Reserva Malbec 2016, 80 -- G, Mendoza, Argentina, #429761 $11.95*
  • Santa Julia Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, 80 -- G, Mendoza, Argentina #242370 $13.95 

  • Dr. Pauly Bergweiler Riesling Feinherg 2016, 89-2 -- V, Mosel, Germany, #496554 $14.75
  • Fazio Aegades Grillo 2015, 87-1 -- V, Sicily, Italy, #388637$17.95
  • Fielding Unoaked Chardonnay 2016 VQA Niagara Peninsula, 87-1 -- V, Beamsville, Ontario, #164491 $14.95
  • Beringer Founders’ Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2016, 84 -- G, California, USA, #407643 $17.95
  • Bodega el Porvenir de Cafayate Amauta Absoluto Torrontés 2016, 81 – V, Salta, Argentina, #489179 $14.95
  • KWV Cathedral Cellar Chenin Blanc 2014, 80 -- V, Coastal Region, South Africa, #278325 $16.95

  • 9 Pink Spritz Rockway VQA Ontario 2016, 91-2 -- G, St. Catharines, Ontario, #323766 $13.95
  • Bottega White Gold Venezia 2016 DOC,  88  --  G, Veneto, Italy, #348318  $27.95
  • Pelee Island Pink 2015 VQA Ontario, 86-1  --  G,  Pelee Island, Ontario,  #529354  $12.95
  • Gérard Betrand Côte des Rosés 2016,  83  --  V, Midi, France, #373985   $18.95
  • Bottega Vino Dei Poeti Rosé,  82  --  G, Venezia, Italy, #277202  $14.95
  • Desiderius Pongracz Brut Cap Classique Sparkling Chardonnay/Pinot Noir, 82  --  V, Stellenbosch, South Africa,  #404111  $16.95   

 (V - Vintages, G - General, O - Other, r-v - Rating-Value, a - aerated, c - cellar)


CARNIVOR CABERNET SAUVIGNON  2015, California, USA, 14.0%  D  8g/L,  #392647   $17.95  (Tasted November 27, 2017)

A General listing.  
My notes: ....expresses a floral balance similiar to an arrangement of summer blooms. A tilt shows a film sufficient to run slow streams on the glass. A sip warms the palate for an enjoyable finish. One more sip sustains flavours and a smooth texture, there may be a hint of sweetness showing through but not discernible to me. Enjoy with a bevy of bacon wrapped asparagus, stuffed mushrooms or cheesey garlic breads. Could be a respectable partner with Beef Wellington and Keg steaks. A candidate for the cellar. 91

BERINGER FOUNDERS' ESTATE SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016, California, USA, 13.5%  XD  5g/L,  #407643  $17.95  (Tasted November 19, 2017)

A General listing. My notes: Pours as a pale grapefruit colour with light film and long tears. A clean nose, ie. an aroma of a delicate mineral on the metallic side, long, silky and dry. Sip cautiously as the combination of steely texture and citric brightness can grab the throat at the start. Maintain well chilled and pair with aged cheddar, green cheese, a kale and feta salad or an anchovy scented pepperoni pizza – even ham and pineapple. Cellaring may mellow but mainly this is a meal white to be consumed when purchased. A saving grace is the fullness of the finish that carries a burst of delicate melon. 84

RAVENSWOOD VINTNERS BLEND OLD VINE ZINFANDEL 2015, Acampo, California,  13.5%  D  4g/L,  #359257   $15.95*  (Tasted November 27, 2017)

Released by Vintages on April 3, 2017. *Price reduced from $18.95. My notes: The skin of a blackberry as seen through early light might describe this red. Light in fruit with a shallow viscosity and showing an arc running tears on a tilted bowl. The finish is short ending with a paper dryness deserving a meaty pizza or savoury stew. A swallow stings the throat slightly. Serve with grilled sliced ham, roasted turkey or liver and onions. 84

KWV CATHEDRAL CELLAR CHENIN BLANC 2014. Coastal Region, South Africa, 14.0% XD 4g/L, #278325 $16.95 (Tasted November 21, 2017)

Released by Vintages on November 11, 2017. My notes: A steely yellow yielding a dozen tears from a thin rim. A sniff reveals an unusual but short lived edge similar to freshly cut cucumber. Pour chilled and allow airing several minutes. The dryness and moderate body quickly sets up a long finish but not suitable as a sipper – perhaps an acquired taste. A meal white to pair with Polish sausage, lightly breaded veal/pork. 80

BODEGA EL PORVENIR DE CAFAYATE AMAUTA ABSOLUTO TORRONTÉS 2016, Salta, Argentina, 13.5%, XD  2g/L,  #489179  (Tasted November 28, 2017)  $14.95

Released by Vintages on September 30, 2017.  My notes: A pale yellow glistening as a diamond and laying a thin film - no tears and miniscule rim. The nose is a light floral with a touch of sweet pea and hint of vanilla. The first sip shines with softness and distant apricot. The finish develops a faint dryness crisp as a freshly squeezed lemon. A lingering roundness would suit seared scallops or shrimp – or serve in a large glass with something creamy - a shrimp pasta or macaroni casserole - also cod/haddock/halibut piled on rice. The finish builds making this an enjoyable sipper.  81

SANTA JULIA MAGNA MALBEC CABERNET 2016,  Mendoza, Argentina, 13.5%  XD  5g/L,  #499699  $14.95   (Tasted December 7, 2017)

A General listing.  My notes:
A colourful burgundy glow to a deep ruby sets this apart from previous Santa Julia’s. Aerating before serving took some of the sharpness leaving a Malbec smoothness. Still a bit raw but starting a full finish, chalk dry texture and some blackberry remnants. Swirling definitely shows a visible viscosity quickly running long legs. Intensity now throttled down to ‘normal’ with acid balanced with woody fruit. Enjoyable as a sipper, better with stuffed mushrooms, bacon wrapped asparagus, etc. Also suitable with BBQ’d beef and seasoned Swiss Chalet ribs. At peak now with a few years remaining and likely improving. 88

SANTA JULIA RESERVA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016, Mendoza, Argentina, 13.0%  XD  2g/L, #242370  $13.95   (Tasted December 4, 2017) 

A General listing. My notes:
An intense tang that, from the first sip, aerating doesn’t mellow. The sharpness adds to a woody raspberry flavour leading to and through a long extra dry finish. Several tilts form a rounded rim followed by a chain of small tears. For colour, it’s a charcoal tinted ruby – dense. As a sipper its brightness and intensity dominate other aspects that may have provided balance. Pair with beef entrees avoiding hot and spicy. For interest, cellar a few to see if time in the bottle is favorable.   80

SANTA JULIA RESERVA MALBEC 2016, Mendoza, Argentina, 13.0%  XD  4g/L,  #429761   $11.95*    (Tasted December 6, 2017)

A General listing. Priced from $13.95 until December 31, 2017. My notes: 
With less intensity than its brother, the Cabernet Sauvignon, the nose has a milder tang. Backlit, the colour glows a rich ruby. A swirl leaves a moderate film and a tilt immediately shows a dozen slow forming tears. Sipping is hit by a sharpness and an extra dry coating that slows down further sips - swallowing heightens the depth and length of the finish while zero sweetness diverts attention from any fruit that may be hidden.  Try aerating then decanting. A companion for rich/rare beef or savoury stews.  80   

THE LACKEY SHIRAZ 2016, South Australia, Australia, 14.5% XD 5g/L,  #005199   $17.95  (Tasted December 1, 2017) 

Released by Vintages on November 11, 2017.  My notes: The first sip is bright and dry: the swallow, intense. There’s a touch of purple in the ruby and the aroma is bland plum, soft and tingly on the nose before a long finish. A swirl spreads a  thin film on the glass accumulating and dropping a few tears. This brightened my lunch of leftover cheeseburger the beef contrasting with the shiraz and providing a tasty combination. A drink now. Buy in for a crowd of red quaffers but have backup. 84 

THORN-CLARKE BAROSSA GRENACHE SHIRAZ 2016, South Australia, #499616 14.5% XD 2g/L, $17.95 (Tasted December 1, 2017)

A General listing. My notes: A ruby coloured, aromatic and spicy blend that settles extra dry on the palate. Also bright, juicy and long in the mouth for an enjoyable social sipper. Medium body and smooth matching an Italian sausage pasta yet enough to support that savoury stew you’ve been planning. Use a wide bowl to capture an ample nose on the bramble side of berry. 88

9 PINK SPRITZ ROCKWAY VQA Ontario 2016, St. Catharines, Ontario,  9%  M  20g/L,  #323766  $13.95  (Tasted Decmber 5, 2017)

A General listing.  My notes:
A blend of Vidal and Cabernet with low alcohol and a refreshing spritz. Serve and maintain chilled. The colour is a coquettish pink, dry on the palate with an enjoyable tang, medium-bodied. There’s a delicate mineral bias to a Macintosh flavour complete with a slight sweetness and delicate nose - all the basis for an excellent social sipper. Well balanced when paired with seafood/shellfish seared with tenderized vegetables, for instance bacon wrapped scallops/baby shrimp seared with baby carrots and broccoli florets). The finish builds as the serving goes off chill (less than 14oC). 91

BOTTEGA VINO DEI POETI BRUT ROSÉ, Venezia, Italy,  11.5%  D  xg/L  #277202  $14.95  (Tasted December 10, 2017) 

A General listing.  My notes: A pink blush that glows – visually enticing. Opens with a layer of froth relaxing to a continuous/dense spritz. The chill offers a refreshing introduction although lacks a flavour focus. Tart without intensity. Dry without roundness. A quick fade prompting an early finish and more frequent sips possibly leading to quaffs. A buffet spread may open up your guests and a preferred partner. If serving bubbly I recommend having an alternate available for an appreciative crowd. 82

PELEE ISLAND PINK 2015 VQA Ontario, Pelee Island, Ontario, 12.5% M  23g/L,  #529354  $12.95  (Tasted December 6, 2017)

A General listing.  My notes:
A clear, delicate strawberry pink. A sniff reveals an aroma leaning to yellow plum and scant mango released from a thin film as the glass is swirled. The first sip surprised me with its distinctive flavours not having tasted the chambourcin hybrid that often. The sweetness is noticeable although nicely balanced with a light acid and moderate alcohol. Try quaffing to experience a higher concentration of the grape and style. The finish starts sweet, levels off to a dry texture and slowly fades to a quite ending. Pair with salads featuring iceberg/kale, raspberries, blueberries and feta or with lightly braised seafoods. A social sipper that could be a popular option. 86

FIELDING UNOAKED CHARDONNAY 2016 VQA Niagara Peninsula, Beamsville, Ontario, 12.5% XD  4g/L,  #164491  $14.95  (Tasted December 3, 2017)

Release by Vintages on November 25, 2017.  My notes: 
Mid yellow and crystal clear. A thin film clings and slowly fills a swollen rim to release a few small tears. Aromas include pie crust and bright lemon with associated flavours. The first sip is smooth and continues through a long finish, is extra dry and retains a delicate dough (lees) element. Serve chilled and let body warmth develop a broader and softer texture. A sipper for conversational exchanges. Maintain at 10 – 12oC for best appreciation. 87

FAZIO AEGADES GRILLO 2015, Sicily, Italy, 13.0%  XD  7g/L,   #388637  $17.95  (Tasted December 1, 2017) 

Released by Vintages on November  25, 2017.  My notes: The colour of Spring daffodils fills the bowl while a tilt brings a thin film and a rim with fragile fragmentation. There’s a mysterious aroma uniquely attractive and yet something that needs time to acquire – delicate, distinct and having a mineral taint. The first sip is bright, moderately full with a tang that spreads quickly revealing lesser defined flavours. Luscious without the sweet – having an intense citric element that may surprise the taste buds. Occasional quaffing rewards by building a stronger finish. Serve and maintain well chilled.  87

GÉRARD BERTRAND CÔTE DES ROSÉS 2016, Midi, France, 12.5% D  12g/L,  #373985   $18.95  (Tasted December 20, 2017)

Released by Vintages on (n/a). My notes: The 2015 vintage was tasted in April 2017 and rated 86. The 2016 comes in the same gracious bottle with the same coquettish pink colour, hard to resist purchasing. Poured refreshingly chilled and immediately swirled the film is thin with a ragged rim and negligible nose. The texture is silky with a short lived mineral flavour. Pair with a sweet dessert or mild cheeses: cheddar, mascarpone or mozzarella meal – try with hummus and crackers. A quaff reinforces the mineral bias while bringing out a moderate tang. Difficult to place with a main meal - try with breaded tilapia on buttered rice. 83  

DESIDERIUS PONGRACZ BRUT CAP CLASSIQUE SPARKLING CHARDONNAY/PINOT NOIR, Devon Valley, Stellenbosch, South Africa, 12.0% XD 6g/L, #404111 $16.95 (Tasted December 18, 2017)

Released by Vintages on November 25, 2017. A blend of 60% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir and Rated 88 by Decanter 2026 (?). My notes: Pouring shows a thick foam on top, stiff as it accumulates then recedes quickly although not for long as froth. The first sip is tart, spritzy, has a delicate grapefruit colour losing its fresh fruit in favour of a mineral edged citrus then followed by a dry flatness. Tried with roast pork tenderloin with a Chinese Hoisin sauce and seared baby carrots and brocolini. Bottle is nicely styled with an eco unfriendly weight of 2 lbs. 82  

DR. PAULY BERGWEILER RIESLING FEINHERB 2016, Mosel, Germany, 11.0%  D  19g/L, #496554  $14.75  (Tasted December 17, 2017)  

Released by Vintages on July 8, 2017.  My notes:  A mild Lemon zest and pie dough aroma greets the nose. A swirl leaaves a light film ringed by an uneven rim. The first sip is tangy and full of fruit filling a long bright finish. A sweetness balances the moderate acid both with flavours that will satisfy sipper. Serve with seafood either of the finned or shell in a fine butter sauced - also roasted roasted stuffed turkey breast. Luscious with enough strength to pair with a touch of garlic and/or capers. Buy in for a social buffet or stuffed mushroom caps, bacon wrapped scallops, etc. 89 

BOTTEGA WHITE GOLD VENEZIA 2016 DOC, Veneto, Italy,  11.0%  D  xg/L, #348318  $27.95  (Tasted December 25, 2017)

A General listing. My notes:  A few dozen bottles with crystal glasses on a circular ruby velvet serving table would be striking. Then poured at 10oC to show a burst of multi-sized bubbles, fine to large with the large ones continuing quickly to a delicate spritz. The colour en masse a delicate yellow. The fragrance is a soft dough and Bosc pear with matching flavour. A round texture adds weight to each sip. A whisper of sweetness softens an extra dry profile and extends the finish until there’s a hint of burnt honey to surprise the palate. Pair with hard cheeses or bacon wrapped sausage slices. Not a sipper if a traditional (fruity) bubbly is preferred. Peaks below 14oC.   88  

ROCKWAY VINEYARDS PINOT NOIR 2014 VQA Niagara Peninsula, Niagara, Ontario,  12.5%  XD  2g/L, #498790   $16.25  (Tasted December 22, 2017)

Released by Vineyards on August 5, 2017.  My notes:  
A light raspberry colour with a woody core and unripe raspberry nose. The film coating on the glass is thin and shows a finely fragmented rim. The first sip bites the tongue, warms the throat and ends with a slightly smooth texture. Have with melted cheddar on toasted multigrain, goats milk feta or a similarly smooth diced cheese on spring greens or pair with a seared honeyed ham slice or Italian sausage. Quaffing tends to bite - sipping is recommended. 82 

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