Posts Tagged ‘Featherstone Rose’

If I only had $100…I would buy at LCBO Vintages

Posted by Julie

Friday, September 2nd, 2016

The dreaded Back-to-School frenzy. Although my school days are long gone, at this time of year, I get caught up in thoughts of buying gym socks, pads of paper and pencil cases, rather wine.

But good on LCBO and the Vintages buying team with this release with incredible buys of “Flagship ISD”, along with vintages septregional features on Burgundy, France and all of Chile.

Many of you may wonder what ISD stands for, it’s “In-Store Discoveries” and flagship of course refers to “the best or most important thing owned or produced” (Wikipedia’s definition). In other words, the most important example of a product. I think you get the drift.

Here are the wines I think will be top of the class. I plan to uncork them and reminisce about my university days while I can hear the frosh week festivities at the nearby university.

I hope you enjoy going back to school!

– Julie

If I only had $100, I would buy . . .
LCBO Vintages Release for Saturday September 3, 2016


featherstoneFeatherstone Rosé

VQA Niagara Peninsula
$15.95 (Vintages #117861) 12.5% alcohol

Only a few weeks ago my husband and I visited the Featherstone Winery and came out loaded with purchases and a free wine tote. This rose wine was amongst our haul! Beautiful pale cranberry in colour that shimmers in the glass. Fresh and fruity on the palate with loads of strawberry and dry rhubarb flavours makes a wonderful summer wine. There’s some savory green pepper notes on the finish. Perfect for a picnic, salads or just on its own. Make summer long with this wine or save to serve at Thanksgiving.



Signos De Origen La Vinilla Chardonnay/Viognier/Marsanne/Roussane 2015

Casablanca Valley, Chile
$19.95 (Vintages #63909) 14.5% alcohol

 The aromas in these four noble grape varietals are exhaustive. When the winemaker blends them together, there is lots of personality and they party well. The tropical fruit of Chardonnay, the peaches and blossom fruit of Viognier, the full bodiness of Marsanne and the creaminess of the Roussane. Delicious!

Flavours on the palate remind me of a big fresh fruit salad with everything from peaches, green and yellow apple with a little citrus on the finish. This wine gives something for everyone. Great on its own or would partner well with some grilled fish.


Cotnari Francu A Cotnari 2014

DOC Frâncua, Romania
$12.95 (Vintages # 445767) 11.5% alcohol

Although this white wine was not available at the time of tasting, I’m putting it in my shopping basket. At this low price point, I am prepared to take a chance. The Vintages panel tasting notes indicates that it is light and fruity which sounds to me like a great summer choice. Not to mention the Cotnari winery has taken part in international contests and been awarded well to the point that they have a “medals gallery”. The Cotnari Vineyards dates back to 1250 and the name “Cotnari” refers to the fortune of being an expert in shaping barrels. All sounds good to me…I’ll take the risk.


Casa Silva Cool Coast Pinot Noir 2013

Colchagua Valley, Chile
$17.95 (Vintages #464420) 14% alcohol

 Aromas of tree fruit and forest floor waft from my glass. No surprise for a Pinot Noir but this red wine is smooth and delicate. There’s also some crisp edginess to it with loads of wild raspberry and cherry flavours on the palate. While Pinot Noir is not a grape varietal I tend to seek out, mark my words, this one is exceptional. Light to medium bodied, easy to drink with a long fruit finish.


Chateau de Segure Fitou 2013

Mont Tauch, Burgundy, France
$16.95 (Vintages #370254) 13.5% alcohol

 A deep elegant ruby red with whiffs of ripe red berry. Flavourful and bold with tantalizing dark-fruit richness. The tannins are soft ,the finish is pepppery and savoury – something that reminds me of fresh herbs such as thyme and rosemary. This red wine calls for a hearty stew or a pork roast with all the trimmings. I’m stashing a few bottles away for when November rolls around.


wits endWits End Luna Shiraz 2014

McLaren Vale, South Australia
$17.00 (Vintages #311258) 14.5% alcohol

Dense purple with a big bouquet of blackberries and black pepper. The palate concentrates on ripe plums and black fruit with well-integrated tannins that lead to a spicy but not sweet finish. In this red wine, there is a small dallop of Barbera grapes blended in that lends a brambley note, but what is the most striking is how this wine is as smooth as velvet and very delicious. It’s a big wine with a little price, bring on the rack of lamb.


Grand Total: $100.75 – for 6 wines…that’s a lot of bang for my buck!


le beaujolais nouveau est arrivé

Posted by Julie

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Beaujolais Nouveau is a ritual in the wine world which always takes place on the third Thursday of every November. The production of Beaujolais Nouveau is a race from grape to glass, bottled just a few weeks after the grapes have been hand picked. Beaujolais grapes are picked ONLY by hand before being fermented.

As it is a young wine, it tastes better chilled. It is known for its cherry and green leaf flavours and high acidity but I find it clean and fresh. I had to laugh when I read that it is better “quaffed” like juice rather than sipped. While I do not think of Beaujolais Nouveau as a red wine with “fine bones”, throughout France and in many other parts of the world this is a time for celebration.

Georges Duboeuf, one of the largest and best known wine merchants in France, is famous for his Beaujolais. His bottles are inexpensive and have beautifully coloured labels that on any table could start a Beaujolais party. Have each of your guests bring an appetizer and let the celebration begin. I also think Beaujolais Nouveau is a great match for turkey but the French no doubt pair it with hearty Burgundian foods. The French say it must be consumed before New Year’s Eve but I know mine won’t last that long.

Try it and see what all the hype is about!

Ewald Gruber Hundspoint Gruner Veltliner 2011

Weinviertel, Neiderosterreich, Austria
$17.95 (Vintages #298299)   13.2% alcohol

The Gruner Veltliner grape is Austria’s liquid gold and takes a dominant position in the total vineyard surface area. I find it fresh and crisp, aromas of stone fruit, great acidity but not too lively, a light to medium bodied white wine it delivers tastes of green apple, lemon lime and a little green pepper on the palate but I think that is the minerality from the soil. It has a reputation for being a perfect match to those hard to match foods such as artichokes or asparagus. if you are looking for a change from your Sauvignon Blanc or Riesling, this will not disappoint.


Featherstone Rosé 2011

VQA Niagara Peninsula
$14.95 (Vintages #117861) 12% alcohol

I visited Featherstone winery a couple of years ago and was so taken with sheep roaming around chewing on grape leaves to help expose the grapes to the sun and come to fruition. I love Rosé and this one is no exception. A beautiful cranberry colour, ripe red berry aromas that follow through on the palate: raspberry and strawberry flavour and  just slightly off dry. Always food friendly and just a great sipper on its own.


Villa Ponciago La Réserve Fleurie 2011

AC, France
$21.95 (Vintages #299917)  13% alcohol

Perhaps unlike the Nouveau Beaujolais, this Beaujolais Cru Gamay is to be savoured and enjoyed.

Fleurie is one of the most renowned of the 10 Beaujolais Crus, it’s vineyard has 30 year old vines. A pale purple colour in the glass with dark fruit aromas of blackberries and blueberries. It has that tangey acidity that only a well made Beajolais can offer with ripe berry fruit flavours, and lots of them on the palate. There is enough in the body that it could be put away for a couple of years but I would be inclined to bring it out when you have some friends over for a pre-Christmas get together. It’s an elegant example of Beaujolais at its best.


Ruffino Serelle Vin Santo Del Chianti 2008

DOC, Italy
$24.95 (Vintages #1008)  15.5% alcohol

Vin Santo is also known as holy wine in Tuscany since it is used in communion. It is also known as a “straw wine” since traditionally it is made from grapes left out on straw mats to dry and shrivel up. This concentrates the flavours of the grapes which similarily to our ice-wine in Canada can be labour intensive and price indicative. This Vin Santo, released just in time for Christmas is rich amber in colour, has ripe aromas of oranges, almonds and caramel with some stone fruit like apricots on the palate, a pinch of honey on the finish. It is just perfect for dessert with some biscotti for dipping. This is a drier (than some) Vin Santo and would also be nice with some old cheddar.


Howling Moon Old Vine Zinfandel 2009

Lodi, California, U.S.A.
$18.95 (Vintages #57356)  13.5% alcohol

A deep dark purple with luscious aromas of vibrant berries and on the palate is sheer richness of black berries, a little coffee and chocolate, all giving an almost creamy mouthfeel and a big blast of flavour like only a Zin can provide. This is a big wine and I also detected aromas of coffee, chocolate even a little caramel and finishes with a little heat and black pepper. With a portobello and sirloin stew this would be magic.

Grand Total: $ 98.75