From the Cellar

Just because I started a website called doesn't mean it's All-Ontario-All-the-Time. When I kick back at night my mood (and sometimes my curiosity) decides my wine of choice. And the title should read, "Uncorked and Un-Screwed Tonight" ... but that just sounds wrong.

Domaine de d'Arjolle 2011 Zinfandel de l'Arjolle (France)

19 Nov 2019

d'Arjolle 2011 Zinfandel


September 1, 2019 ... As a fan of American Zin I'm always interested to see how others are dealing with it, when they can (and trust me there are not that many doing Zin). Of course the Italians do great with Primitivo, but I've never seen a French version, I picked this one up a number of years ago and now wonder how its aging.

Aromas are pleasant with smoky, earthy, and cassis notes; because of the 14.5% alcohol there is a hint of that there as well ... the palate is an interesting mix of dried plum, dried cherry, balsamic and spice - as the wine opens it gets spicier and that almost overwhelms as the fruit diminishes; the acidity is good and the finish is long, whether its what I would call a classic-aged Zin is debatable - but its pretty interesting none-the-less.


Brigaldara 2001 Valpolicella Classico (Italy)

16 Oct 2019

Brigaldara 2001 Valpolicella Classico


(August 12, 2019) ... Wow, I did not expect this ... that opening sounds like the first line of every "Penthouse Forum" letter ever written (or so I am told) and here is where I move away from that typical script ... but what a lovely bit of wine making this was (or is). When I pulled out this 18 year old Valpolicella Classico I truly had little to no hope, but thought it would be an interesting experience and an experiment, but wow, this one is still very drinkable and enjoyable at that:  leathery and dried dark fruit have taken over (as to be expected really), there's also some oaky notes and the fruit continues on that dry route, seemingly getting drier the longer it is open. A slight pruning does develop the further into the wine we get and the longer it is open and a touch of sherry does begin you show through within about 30-40 minutes but it seems to be backed by good spice and acidity, that makes the mouth pucker and I still say "wow". After an hour the whole thing smooths out and the rough edges seem to relax, but there remains that surprising zippy spice and constantly cleansing acidity to bring everything into focus.


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