Saturday May 25, 2019 - Vintages Release Report

23 May 2019

 

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Key to the 5-star rating system:
5 = Outstanding … 4.5 = Excellent … 4 = Very Good … 3.5 = Good

Wine colour indicators - Red, Whites, etc.

The Foci … Women in Wine (WiW); Sparkling Wines (FIZZ)

The New Normal … The LCBO has curbed our tasting of Vintages releases by almost half – they are “curating” what we taste, so instead of finding those gems from the full list of wines being released the LCBO is telling us what they want us to taste and then we are to pick the gems out of those wines …

60 wines were NOT offered for tasting
plus 12 “Flagship Exclusives” (aka. In Store Discoveries)

The Skinny …
With fewer wines to taste these reports are smaller and don’t always point out the best, but the best of what I tried. The Women in Wine feather brings out quite a few good wines while there were few real winners in the “fizz” world. But the real winners here come from Italy and France, especially if you like big reds and light rosés – see the best values at the end of this report. There are also some good Ontario wines to choose from this time out.

Argentina …
Catena 2016 Paraje Altamira Malbec ($22.95 - #492413) – mocha, blueberry and black cherry with an acid / spice finish.  (****) … WiW

Canada (British Columbia) …
Blue Mountain NV Gold Label Brut Sparkling ($29.95 - #206326) - if you have never heard of Blue Mountain I thinks it time you get to know them as they consistently make great bubbles worth searching out. Two years on lees, in the traditional method results in baked apple, spiced lime, plus some lemon and great acid hit.  (****) … FIZZ
Canada (Nova Scotia) …
Benjamin Bridge Methode Classique Brut ($32.95 - #528752) – apple lemon core with a hint of mineral on the finish. (***+) … FIZZ
Canada (Ontario) … click on wine name for full review
Creekside 2016 Iconoclast Syrah ($25.00 - #471797) - ****
Creekside 2017 Iconoclast Semillon / Sauvignon Blanc ($23.00 - #520627) - *** ½+
KEW 2016 Soldier’s Grant ($19.95 - #367318) - ****
Southbrook Framboise ($19.95 - #341024) – ****
Trius Brut Rosé ($32.95 - #184309) - **** ... FIZZ

Chile …
Montgras 2015 Limited Edition 25th Anniversary Red ($17.95 - #632943) – minty, red licorice, blackberry, pink peppercorns and a sweet fruit middle, but dry finish.  (*** ½)

France (Beaujolais) …
Stephane Aviron 2014 Vieilles Vignes Cote du Py ($23.95 - #424804) – very intense cherry on the palate with a slight earthy note, this one needs a 30 minute chill.  (***+)
France (Lauguedoc) …
Chateau Peuch-Haut 2016 Les Complices ($19.95 - #644666) – blackberry and white smoke with a black cherry finish.  (*** ½)
Moulin de Gassac 2018 Classic ($12.95 - #644518) – fresh and lively with some tropical and peach.  (*** ½)
France (Midi) …
Lorgeril 2018 Gris de Garille ($13.95 - #667311) - do yourself a favour and mark this one down for a case purchase, it’s the rosé you are going to come back to again and again and again. Light and refreshing with floral, melon rind and a dash of raspberry.  (*** ½+)
France (Rhone) …
Beaumirail 2016 Vacqueyras ($21.95 - #638650) – lots of spice plus dark fruit with a burnt coffee note on the finish.  (*** ½)

Italy (Campania) …
Nativ 2017 Rue Dell’Inchiostro Aglianico ($19.95 - #631606) – lots of great rich flavours have been coaxed into this wine while still keeping the acidity and tannins, and all at a great price worthy of at least a 3 bottle purchase: black cherry, plum, spiced cherry, silky mid-palate and a long finish; this wine isn’t about finesses, it’s about seducing your mouth with its richness - and you’re gonna love that it did.  (****)
Italy (Tuscany) …
Lornano 2016 Riserva Chianti Colli Senesi ($19.95 - #644989) – nice cherry core with elements of smoke and spice.  (*** ½)
Italy (Veneto) …
Ca’ De’ Rocchi Montere 2015 Valpolicella Ripasso Superiore ($23.95 - #668491) – chocolate, mocha, cherry with great acid backing; this one is rich and bold.  (****)

Portugal …
Confidencial 2014 Reserva ($14.95 - #452789) – this is the art of simplicity and seduction for a mere $15: this easy drinking red has a cherry-mocha core that will have you drinking it all night long.  (*** ½+)

South Africa …
Pongraz Cap Classique Rosé ($18.95 - #646968) – nice hit of raspberry and lime with a creamy note in the middle, there is a little South Africa funk on the finish but otherwise this one is quite tasty and well-priced.  (*** ½) … FIZZ
Waterkloof 2015 Circumstance Cabernet Sauvignon ($24.95 - #651471) – spicy, smoked meat with cassis and blackberry plus earthy undertones and dark fruit middle.  (*** ½+) … WiW

Spain …
Muriel 2018 Fincas de la Villa Blanco ($14.95 - #645127) – easy drinking white with floral and lime meringue notes.  (*** ½)
CVNE 2015 Cune Crianza ($16.95 - #39925) – the acidity here is insane while the red fruit also contains spice and pepper; it’ll age well for 3-5 years but I bet you could ose this in you cellar for up to 10 years without worry.  (*** ½+) … WiW
CVNE 2014 Imperial Reserva ($39.95 - #424390) - what a true delight out of Rioja that manages to balance the old school with the new; 18 months in French and American oak with another 18 months in bottle: blackberry, vanilla, and cassis with well integrated tannins, balanced acidity and hints of smoke on the long finish.  (****+) … WiW

United States (California) …
Cambria 2015 Julia’s Vineyard Pinot Noir ($34.95 - #980482) – spicy black cherry, anise, smoke and good acidity.  (*** ½+) … WiW
La Crema 2018 Pinot Noir Rosé ($27.95 - #668376) – pleasing raspberry, strawberry and lime even with some spiced-peach on the finish.  (*** ½+)
United States (Washington) …
Hedges 2016 The Bourgeoisie ($24.95 - #665976) – this seems to be a baby-red-mountain made with less grapes: spicy and smoky with notes of balsamic, white pepper, coffee; really tasty and a long finish.  (****)
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If You Can Afford It:  wines worth their high price …
Gallo 2014 Signature Series Cabernet Sauvignon, California ($59.95 - #394197) - ****+ … WiW


Best Values in this Release - (May 25, 2019) …
Lorgeril 2018 Gris de Garille ($13.95 - #667311) – France
Nativ 2017 Rue Dell’Inchiostro Aglianico ($19.95 - #631606) – Italy

 

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© MichaelPinkusWineReview.com 2019. All rights reserved. You may use the content of this newsletter by including full credit to Michael Pinkus, Grape Guy and a link to www.michaelpinktuwinereview.com

 

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