Hello to all my wine friends,
Now my favourite question; If I were allowed to buy only one wine from this NR, which one would that be? My answer would be I Campi Campu Vulcano Soave Classico 2010 from Italy (269969) at $18.95. People who have given up on Soave Classico will feel differently after tasting this complex and refreshing Soave. Now apart from the wines featured in the following two highlighted segments, here are a few wines I would like to bring to your attention.
Starting with white wines;
· For those of you who will be serving ham for Easter, here are two Rieslings to consider; first from Ontario, Château Des Charmes Old Vines Riesling 2010 from Niagara-on-the-Lake (277228) at $16.95 sweetness level - dry and Veil Armand Grand Cru Ollwiller Riesling 2009 from France (315135) at $20.95 sweetness level - extra-dry.
· From one of the better Soave producers, I have really enjoyed their 2009 vintage and look forward to this new vintage; I Campi Campu Vulcano Soave Classico 2010 from Italy (269969) at $18.95.
· Finally for fans of wines Pinot Gris from Alsace, Joseph Cattin Hatschbourg Pinot Gris 2010 from France (260240) at $19.95. This wine is off-dry and fruity, sweetness level - medium.
Now for the red wines;
· Unfortunately I have emptied my cellar of Zinfandel, here is one wine which seems very interesting and can resolve my dilemma, Candor Lot 3 Zinfandel from California (133389) at $21.95. No vintage year for this Zin, the winemaker Austin Hope blends two, sometimes three vintages together to achieve the style he's looking for.
· For fans of Malbec, here are three very good one to considered; the first two from Argentina, Angulo Innocenti Malbec 2010 from Mendoza (305813) at $18.95 and Versado Malbec 2010 also from Mendoza (317008) at $24.95. The last one from France, Château Haut-Monplaisir Prestige Cahors Malbec 2006 (936542) at $21.95.
· My only red recommendation from Italy this week; Brigaldara Case Vecie Amarone Della Valpolicella 2007 from Veneto (247502) at $58.95. Well let's get started;
The Wines from Southern France; For most wine buyers, Bordeaux, Burgundy and the Rhône Valley take much of the spotlight, few people think of venturing into the Southern France shelves (also call Languedoc and Roussillon) of their wine shores. This is the exact reason why there are very good valued wines coming from appellations like; Corbières, Minervois and Saint-Chinian to name a few. Benefiting from a warm Mediterranean climate, the style of red wines coming out of this region are bold, slightly rustic with flavours of black fruit, black pepper, savoury spices, tar and sometimes strong minerality notes. Since most of these wines are blends, my recommendation for you is to find out which grapes you enjoy best. The majority of red grapes grown in this region are; Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre and Carignan. For my palate, I really enjoy Syrah, Grenache and Carignan, I am not a big fan of Mourvèdre. I just don't like the nose on the Mourvèdre grape, unless you have a foot fetish I suppose, the aromatics can be a little over the top for me. Occasionally I may buy a wine with 20% or less of Mourvèdre, but I will never buy a 100% Mourvèdre. Based on my palate, here are my top four wines from Southern France;
· Domaine Les Yeuses Les Épices Syrah 2010 from les Pays D'Oc (177584) at $13.95 - This wine is 100% Syrah from old vines with maturation of 60% on fine lees in tank with the remaining 40% on lees in oak barrels for 9 months, after blending the wine spends its final 3 months in tanks before bottling and alcohol comes in at 13.5%. A ready to enjoy medium bodied spicy Syrah, in French les épices means spices.
· Château de Treviac Corbières 2010 from Armaud Sié (670505) at $15.95 - My pick for the best value of this NR, this is a blend of 80% Syrah and 20% Grenache with alcohol coming in at 14.5%. This is a full bodied wine to be paired with BBQ pork, beef or lamb, hamburgers or strong cheeses.
· Château Saint-Roch Chimères 2010 from AC Côtes du Rousillon-Villages (119354) at $18.95 - This wine is a blend of 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 10% Carignan, aged 8-12 months in demi-muids and concrete vats and alcohol coming in at 14%.
· Hecht & Bannier Saint-Chinian 2010 (184184) at $23.95 - From an awesome producer, this wine is a blend of majority Syrah with the remaining Grenache and Mourvèdre with maturation taking place in 35% tank, 20% demi muids (1 and 2 years old wood) and 45% barrels of 225 litres and 500 litres (new and 1 year old wood) and alcohol coming in at 14%.
My picks for...; I thought that I might give you my picks by these predominant grapes or blend or region;
· My Sauvignon Blanc pick; Frog's Leap Sauvignon Blanc 2012 from California (966036) at $26.95 - This wine is 100% Sauvignon Blanc grapes from Rutherford in Napa Valley, fermented and aged in stainless steel tanks only (no oak) and alcohol comes in at 12.7%. This wine would be fantastic with a nice grilled chicken summer salad.
· My Chardonnay pick; Framingham Chardonnay 2009 from New Zealand (309534) at $19.95 - The same great country that makes beautiful Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir can also make stunning, well priced Chardonnay like this one, maturation in French oak and alcohol coming in at 14%.
· My top red wine from this NR; Château Grand Mayne 2009 from France (197848) at $67.85 - This is one of those wines which, if opened today would be a shame, forget about this beauty for at least the next 4-5 years. This is mostly made with Merlot with Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc in a supporting role with alcohol coming in at 13%. This wine is ranked #36 in Wine Enthusiast's Top 100 of 2012.
· My Spanish red pick; Otazy Premium Cuvée 2007 from Spain (313809) at $16.95 - From the Navara region of Spain, this wine is a blend of 45% Tempranillo, 40% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, maturation in French Allier oak barrels for 14 months and alcohol coming in at 14.5%. Should be paired with braised red meat, BBQ lamb or strong cheese.
· My mature Chilean red pick; Erasmo 2006 from Chile (311837) at $21.95 - This wine is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, dry farmed, maturation in French oak for 18 months with alcohol coming in at 14.7% and bottled in February of 2008. Ready to go after a one hour decant.
My top three wines from this release;
1- Château Grand Mayne 2009 from France (197848) at $67.85 - Cellar Candidate
2- Beaulieu Vineyard Tapestry Reserve 2009 from California (050393) at $59.95
3- Brigaldara Case Vecie Amarone Della Valpolicella 2007 from Italy (247502) at $58.95
My top three wines for value;
1- Château de Treviac Corbières 2010 from France (670505) at $15.95
2- Otazy Premium Cuvée 2007 from Spain (313809) at $16.95
3- I Campi Campu Vulcano Soave Classico 2010 from Italy (269969) at $18.95
My wine picks from this New Release for your considerations;
1- Domaine Les Yeuses Les Épices Syrah 2010 from France (177584) at $13.95
2- Château Pech-Redon L'Épervier 2010 from France (129965) at $19.95
3- Château Saint-Roch Chimères 2010 from France (119354) at $18.95
4- Château de Treviac Corbières 2010 from France (670505) at $15.95
5- Hecht & Bannier Saint-Chinian 2010 from France (184184) at $23.95
6- Le Clos Jordanne La Petite Colline Pinot Noir 2009 from Ontario (033944) at $40.00
7- Beaulieu Vineyard Tapestry Reserve 2009 from California (050393) at $59.95
8- Candor Lot 3 Zinfandel from California (133389) at $21.95
9- Angulo Innocenti Malbec 2010 from Argentina (305813) at $18.95
10-Versado Malbec 2010 from Argentina (317008) at $24.95
11-Erasmo 2006 from Chile (311837) at $21.95
12-Jim Barry The Lodge Hill Shiraz 2010 from Australia (998476) at $24.95
13-Château Grand Mayne 2009 from France (197848) at $67.85
14-Château Haut-Monplaisir Prestige Cahors Malbec 2006 from France (936542) at $21.95
15-Brigaldara Case Vecie Amarone Della Valpolicella 2007 from Italy (247502) at $58.95
16-Otazy Premium Cuvée 2007 from Spain (313809) at $16.95
1- Balchedel Saunders Vineyard Chardonnay 2010 from Ontario (324103) at $44.95
2- Château Des Charmes Old Vines Riesling 2010 from Ontario (277228) at $16.95
3- Le Clos Jordanne Claystone Terrace Chardonnay 2009 from Ontario (056929) at $40.00
4- Calera Chardonnay 2011 from California (713313) at $24.95
5- Frog's Leap Sauvignon Blanc 2012 from California (966036) at $26.95
6- Framingham Chardonnay 2009 from New Zealand (309534) at $19.95
7- Joseph Cattin Hatschbourg Pinot Gris 2010 from France (260240) at $19.95
8- Veil Armand Grand Cru Ollwiller Riesling 2009 from France (315135) at $20.95
9- Domaine Jean Coillet & Fils Vaillons Chablis 1er Cru 2010 from France (650804) at $27.95
10-Domaine Fouassier Les Grands Groux Sancerre 2010 from France (267948) at $24.95
11-I Campi Campu Vulcano Soave Classico 2010 from Italy (269969) at $18.95
12-Varanda Do Conde Alvarinho Trajadura Vinho Verde 2011 from Portugal (966663) at $13.95
This is all for me and my team. We will be back for the next New Release of April 13, 2013 where the featured segments are "New Zealand: fan faves and new faces" and "Versatile; great value Portuguese wines".