From the Cellar

Just because I started a website called OntarioWineReview.com 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.

La Crema 2014 Pinot Noirs (California)

15 Apr 2021

You're going to read about three La Crema wines from the same vintage but from different area of California that I drank on three different night ... 

Monterey PN La Crema(November 7, 2020) ... It all started with the 2014 Monterey. Now I loved visiting Monterey County, they talked a lot about cool climate, which is definitely nothing new for someone from Ontario - so I do have a soft spot for many wines from this part of the state. Sour cherry and red cherry along with white pepper and nice acidity plus there is a nice little tannin bite; fresh and lively with a nice dry, medium-length finish, there's even a little licorice in here.

Russian River PN La Crema(November 10, 2020) ... It was not my intention to drink another La Crema Pinot Noir on this night, nor was I going to have all three in the same month, but once you start (it's like Lay's potato chips "bet ya can't have just one") ... I was so impressed with the Monterey version that I decided to grab the Russian River Valley offering (2014). Big spicy dark fruit (a la black cherry) with good acidity and a punch of strawberry and rhubarb - I even decided to put a little chill on this one and it really got that red fruit to pop, plus it seemed to add a little tobacco into the mix ... as it opens the acidity kept everything in balance and there was just hint of white pepper which settled nicely onto the finish.

Los Carneros PN La Crema(November 15, 2020) ... It's now been a week since this experiment started and I am pulling the last bottle of La Crema Pinot 2014 from my cellar, Los Carneros - this one is black cherry, black pepper and smoke with hints of floral; the tannins and the acidity are present with the tannins being a little more dominant here than in any of the previous two wines. Probably my least favourite of the three, but they were all still pretty good as a whole.

 

 

Elephant Hill 2013 Syrah (New Zealand)

11 Mar 2021

 Elephant Hill

(September 26, 2020) ... This is one of those "tasting nights" where I pulled out 3 Rieslings (2 Ontario and 1 German) - 3 Pinot Noirs  (all 3 from Ontario) and finally grabbed a Syrah to drink ... and from this particular evening this is the only note that exists - it was just that impressive.

Starts off with spicy dark fruit and some mocha-cherry, and that's just the aromas ... on the palate raspberry and pepper for starters ... the fruit kept coming in waves with hints of secondary characteristics like smoke and oak, but always with a heavy dose of fruit at its core. Simply put this wine was just gorgeous and so very drinkable now ... and it was 7 years old. It still had lots and lots of time ahead of it - I did not commit infanticide here, but I'm sure if I opened this up in 2025 it would not be much different. Hats off to those in New Zealand who jumped on the screwcap bandwagon early. I can say this for certain about this wine: tertiary notes are so far non-existent ... and will be for quite some time.

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