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.

Passo del Sud 2016 Appassimento (Italy)

31 May 2017


Last year I had the opportunity to try a wine called Passo del Sud (read review here) – I was so impressed with it that I immediately put it on the website with a hope that it will come into the LCBO … well it seems I got my wish – the LCBO will be carrying Passo del Sud, but instead of the 2015 version Passo del Sud 2016(which I reviewed) they have opted for the newest vintage (2016). While here in Puglia I got a chance to sit down with Michele Lorusso (of Tagaro Winery) and his winemaker father and try the vintage the LCBO will be carrying.

This year the blend is slightly different: Negroamaro (30%), Montepulciano (20%), Primitivo (15%) and Nero di Troia making up the balance (35%) – the good news is the wine retains all the charm of the 2015: plum, black cherry, and hint of mocha on the nose, while the palate is supple with plum, white smoke, black cherry, subtle spices and an elegant mouthfeel with a long finish … when I asked Michele when the wine was bottled he said “May 10”, which means this wine is only going to get better once it gets out of its bottle shock phase (cause even now it is a tasty wine) – an hour after opening we re-tasted the wine and it proved that it is destined to be another fabulous bottling of Passo del Sud; all it needed was some oxygen to make it fully come alive.  

For those interested:  25-30% of the wine sees time in oak for about 4 months … in my opinion this wine needs a year in bottle to real shine, the good news is that by the time the LCBO gets it onto their shelves it’ll be halfway there.  (**** with the potential to go higher)


ACWC Night 1 (Hungary / Spain)

05 May 2017

J & J(June 7, 2016) ... It's the first night of the All Canadian Wine Championships and as par-usual I bring along some wines to share at the dinners ... First wine I pull is a ten year old Hungarian by J&J (2006 Eger) Kekfrankos (Blaufrankisch) ... The acidity has held up, along with notes of leather and burnt raspberry, plus some mushroom - this wine is very earth-driven, not that I am thrilled with it but amazingly it is not dead.

La CasonaAnother wine that surprises me is the Bodegas Castana 2007 La Casona, a wine that sells for well under $10 and at 9 years of age has stood up: leather and balsamic strawberry lead the charge followed by tannins that are still ripe and pretty aggressive.


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