Best Bordeaux? The 2010 vintage critics say

This weekend you are in for a treat. The LCBO Vintages release of October 26 is exceptional! It is time to stash a few bottles of the latest Bordeaux wines away for either a short or long time if you are into cellaring wine.  Every fall, Vintages offers the Classic Collection of Bordeaux wines.  The wine industry is abuzz that the 2010 Bordeaux vintage will be the best one in living history. The pages of this elegant catalogue has grand French chateaux showcasing their 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Grand Crus (winespeak: high end wines).  Most of these wines are well over $100 – which makes it out of my ‘If I only had $100’ blog budget, but it’s sure is interesting to read about them & imagine what the wines are like now and after a few years in a wine cellar.

Oregon – the Bordeaux of the Pacific Northwest

The supporting actor in this weekend’s feature are wines from Oregon. I confess Oregon was not on my travel agenda until I tasted some of these wines. Oregon is known for its erratic weather patterns often drenched with over 40 inches of rain in a year so the winemakers deserve extra kudos when showcasing some of their vintages.  I discovered refined and delicious Merlots, a Cabernet  Sauvignon, even a Pinot Noir caught my attention.

So this blog was a tough one to keep within my $100 budget.  Here are my wine finds that should find the way into your shopping cart.  If you only pick up one bottle, I hope that you would grab a bottle of our Canadian ice cider.

Happy Shopping!



Château Lacombe Noaillac 2010

AC Médoc   (Jean-Michel Lapalu)
Bordeaux, France
$18.95 (Vintages #199091) 13.5% alcohol

Glorious bouquet of toasty rich dark fruits that carry through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied red wine with creamy texture, intense berries complimented by firm tannins with a little vanilla  spice on the aftertaste. It has texture and strength and could probably lay down for a few years. It would be lovely with a pot roast surrounded by root vegetables on a winter’s night.


Domaine Wachau Terraces Gruner Veltliner 2012

Wachau, Austria
$17.95 (Vintages #155812)  13% alcohol

Pale golden in colour, with yellow apple and citrusy aromas, this white wine is bone dry with flavours of lemon zest and citrus on the palate that make it a little tart. There’s some minerality making it fresh and zippy. Light-bodied in weight makes it a fabulous appertif or it is food friendly to any number of white meat or fish dishes. Served with some chicken stuffed with tarragon and goat’s cheese would be a match made in heaven.


Columbia Crest Grand Estates Merlot 2010

Columbia Valley, Oregon, U.S.A.
$15.95 (Vintages #263418)  14.5 % alcohol

This red wine is an extravagant Merlot with heady aromas of violets and blackberries. Smooth and earthy on the palate, lots of luscious black fruit, velvety smooth with soft tannins. There’s a little lavender, peppery finish that makes it interesting. It is an expressive Merlot, certainly not run of the mill, and a fabulous price point.


Journey’s End Shiraz 2007

WO Stellenbosch, Single Vineyard, South Africa
$20.95 (Vintages #337642)  14% alcohol

How could I not love a wine with the same name as my cat “Journey”? But before you dismiss me with a “guffaw”, I must point out that this red wine was a Gold Medal winner at the 2013 Sommelier Wine Awards. Smooth as silk on the mouth, excellent replays of blackberry fruit, and peppery. It’s full bodied with a long grippy, berry finish and strong enough that it could cellar quite nicely for a few years. I love lamb chops, so bring them out with some garlic and rosemary marinade.


La Face Cachée de la Pomme Neige Premiere Ice Cider 2011

Quebec, Canada
$24.95  (Vintages #39305) 11% alcohol

Inspired by similar techniques used to make ice wine, this ice cider or apple ice wine is born in extreme cold winter temperatures in Quebec. This past September, we happened to pick up a bottle of this ice cider in Quebec City knowing it would be a lovely finish to our Thanksgiving supper. (Our company thought so too). Juicy and Canadian, crisp and sweet green and yellow apples! I don’t know how else to describe this luscious ice cider drink. It is smooth & creamy, your taste buds squirt saliva with the acidity, but sweet apple prevails on the palate. There has been no sugar or alcohol added. It is a perfect after dinner drink and with a piece of blue cheese or stilton – oh my!


Grand Total: $ 98.75



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