Posts Tagged ‘Ladies who Shoot their Lunch Shiraz’

If I had $100…I would buy these wines at Vintages

Posted by Julie

Friday, December 5th, 2014
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It’s the most wonderful time of the year, as the song goes, with friends, festivities, and family get togethers.  Vintages in the LCBO never disappoints.  In this weekend’s release (December 6) I wanted to buy one of everything….but remembering that I only have $100 and several dinner parties ahead of me I’m looking for value – for you and me.

LCBO Vintages magazine Dec 6First, there’s all kinds of divine “fizz” out there to tickle your tastebuds and reasonably priced sparklers such as the two new Cava’s in this release.  They are dry, snappy and the genesis to any dinner or party. To me, December is all about sparkling wine.  Served in a beautiful flute with 2 or 3 pomegranate seeds for panache, it’s as elegant as any champagne and no one knows or even cares if you spent $15 or $50. Bottom line, sparkling wine is festive and fun and everyone enjoys it. You can never have too much fizz!

When you are shopping for others, don’t forget about yourself. There’s one beautiful wine that I would recommend to everyone including the Queen: “Ladies Who Shoot Their Lunch Shiraz 2012”  (LCBO #243592 $35.95) is the pinnacle of Shiraz’s. I have tasted hundreds of wines in 2014 and this one always rises to any occasion.

I love to showcase Canadian wines and this release offered so many great ones. Have fun shopping and don’t forget, if you find something delicious, go back and get a few bottles. Once it’s gone, it’s gone.  Sometimes even I forget my own advice!

It’s Christmas time, share your cheer and goodwill.

My best to you for the season,
Julie 

If I had $100, I would buy these wines at LCBO Vintages…

December 6, 2014

 

Summarroca Gran Reserva Brut Cava

Sumarroca Gran Reserva Brut Nature Cava 2009

DO, Spain
$18.95 (Vintages # 393504) 11.5% alcohol

Ever wonder what that “DO” means?  DO  stands for “Denominacion de Origen” similar to our VQA in Ontario.  It’s part of a regulatory classification system for the country’s highest quality products. It can be applied to everything from olive oil to honey to fruit.  This Cava is delicate, pale in colour, light bodied and totally refreshing. Reminiscent of toasted almonds and apricots with a little herbaceous-ness on the finish not often detected in a sparkling white.  I would recommend light or-d’oeuvres so not to crowd the tastes; perhaps some delicious little crackers, you don’t have to break the bank to be elegant. That old expression, “less is more”.

 

Featherstone ChardonnayFeatherstone Canadian Oak Chardonnay 2012

VQA Niagara Peninsula
$21.95 (Vintages # 149302) 13.5% alcohol

I hadn’t planned to feature a Chardonnay however I could not waste the opportunity to taste something new. This Chard. really wowed me. I can’t wait for the release. Aromas of creme caramel and layers upon layers of tropical fruits, soft, not overwhelming in oak so don’t let the “oak” in the name scare you off.  As you whirl it around the tongue this white wine is so soft in the mouthfeel, medium to full bodied and there are some wines, I can only describe as yummy.   A great sipper on its own but I think it would marry well with chicken in parmesan crust with a little white sauce, green beans, now its getting “yummier”.

 

De Sousa Seasons MeritageDe Sousa Seasons Reserve Meritage 2012

VQA Niagara Peninsula
$15.95  (Vintages #315911) 13% alcohol

Unbelievable to find a Meritage at that price point that tasted so delicious. Once again I am wowed by a Canadian winery. Red Meritage must be a blend of two or more of the five traditional Bordeaux grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet France, Petit Verdot or Malbec. Historically, Meritage wines are considered to be highly rated and the winery must be a member of the Meritage Alliance and adhere to the above regulation. Rich red fruits on the palate, medium bodied, light tannins with a little leather and dust on the finish. Layered with lots of berry flavours, a great sipper on its own but pot roast comes to mind, with lots of root veggies and don’t forget the “jus”.

 

Vineland Pinot MeunierVineland Pinot Meunier 2012

VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula
$17.95 (Vintages# 225508) 12% alcohol

Juicy, juicy, juicy….the aromas were almost like sticking your head in a bouquet of ripe cherries. Pinot Meunier is often used in blends such as Champagne, however it is an incredible grape just on its own and grown in our own backyard. Medium bodied with soft tannins with a fruity red berry finish, it is a red wine that would be agreeable to everyone. It is also versatile enough to marry with chicken to a beef stew and it’s just great on its own with a varietal cheese plate.

 

Alma Negra BlendAlma Negra Blend 2011

Mendoza , Argentina
$19.95 (Vintages #384297)  13.5% alcohol

This new to Vintages product is a blend of the Bonarda and Malbec grapes. Aromas of dark ripe plums and cherries carry through to the palate and make for a huge mouthfeel of lusciousness. Good acidity with soft tannins, beautifully balanced and a great new find. It’s dark and rich, served with any grilled meat from ribs to steak (not to mention its packaged in one sexy black bottle) I promise the folks around the table will comment.  It’s a gem of a red wine.

 

Grand Total: $ 94.75

 

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It’s beginning to look alot like Christmas!

Posted by Julie

Friday, November 22nd, 2013
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You tell me…is it too early to start your festive shopping?  The 23 November LCBO Vintages release features “Our Finest, Holiday Gifting and Premium Spirits” which just put me in the mood to start picking up a few gifts for Christmas.  Since most people I buy for imbibe, it makes my holiday shopping almost one-stop.

While there is no one on my list that will be receiving the Glenfiddich Gran Reserva 21 Years Old Highland Single Malt at $241.95, it would sure make a great splurge for a lover of single malts.  I also did not realize that Spain produces a wine called Alion 2009, DO Ribera del Douro with a dear price tag of $84.95.

Although, I may splurge in a bottle of Ladies Who Shoot Their Lunch Shiraz 2010 (Vintages # 243592, $35.95). I remember featuring this wine at a Savvy Event a couple of years ago and folks literally swarmed my booth for a sample of this nectar or after having tasted it, and then returned for more. In this release, there is also another incredible Aussie red wine from Barossa, called The Holy Trinity by Grant Burge (Vintages# 236257, $29.95). With one sip, my taste buds really did think they had died and gone to heaven!

There are many lovely wines in this release. Just remember when you are shopping for others, it does not hurt to pick up something wonderful for yourself as well.  You deserve it!

Cheers!

Julie

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

 

Tinhorn Gewurztraminer 2012

VQA Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
$24.95 (Vintages #904185)   12.9% alcohol 

I was first introduced to Tinhorn wines when Susan – another Savvy Sommelier – asked me to split a case of some Tinhorn Creek red wines with her. I jumped at the opportunity knowing her expertise for wines in the Okanagan Valley.  And the red wine certainly did not disappoint. I was excited to see this Gewurztraminer white wine and hope more BC wines will make their way to Ontario. Lovely aromas of white blossoms and lychee, some tropical fruit flavours on the palate, a little mango and lime and just cries for a spicy shrimp curry with jasmine rice. That sounds like a dinner party.

 

Featherstone Black Sheep Riesling 2012

VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario
$16.95 (Vintages # 80234)  10% alcohol 

Crisp, fresh and delightful are the descriptors that come to mind when tasting this delicious Riesling. Mind you, I don’t think there are any Featherstone wines I don’t like. This white wine has lots of flint and wet stone  – typical of Niagara area Rieslings  – combined with yellow and green apple flavours, not typical in many Rieslings. It is a delicious afternoon sipper or a great appertif as it could accompany almost any hors’d’oeuvres…stock up for the holidays!

 

Salentein Reserve Malbec 2011

Mendoza, Argentina
$17.95 (Vintages #640854) 14.5 % alcohol 

There’s nothing like those dark inky Malbecs in the heart of winter. In this red wine are aromas of blueberries and spice, lots of black currants on the palate and a little cassis. It has loads of flavour and a tight structure, nice firm tannins but juicy and a peppery, ripe berry aftertaste. I liked it just on its own or can imagine that it would pair nicely with any grilled meat; even with chocolate or a piece of Christmas cake.  Practically takes you through two courses.  Argentina be proud with this outstanding red wine!

 

Montes Limited Selection Pinot Noir 2011

Casablanca Valley, Chile
$14.95  (Vintages #354340)  14% alcohol 

While some folks look at me in horror when I say that it has taken me awhile to cuddle up to Pinot Noir’s, lately, I have discovered some good ones. This light cherry coloured, medium bodied red wine is is quite lovely and smooth. It has smooth mouth coating red fruit flavours with a touch of smoke, a little forest floor pepper and earthiness in the after taste. At 14.95, it is an incredible price point.  Serve with mushroom lasagne…and please put my name on the dinner invitation!

 

Château D’Anglés Grand Vin 2008

AC Languedoc La Clape, France
$20.95 (Vintages #286492)  14.5% alcohol 

How can you go wrong with a blend of 55% Mourvèdre, 35% Syrah and 10% Grenache Noir. These classic grape varietals are used extensively in the Rhone Valley in southern France to make big bold red wines. Rich and heady with leather and smoke aromas this is a red wine combined with dense dark fruit on the palate. Baked fruit pie, stewed plums and Christmas cake spices that linger long after the last swallow. This is one of our all-time favorite blends with a beef stew or lamb shanks. 

 

Grand Total: $95.75

 

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Australian Shiraz Bonanza!

Posted by Debbie

Friday, August 24th, 2012
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When I say: Australian wines…what automatically comes to mind? BIG knock-em-outta-the-park-blockbuster Shiraz red wines.  Right?  There are so many Shirazes to choose from and most of us have our favorites, that at a recent Sommelier led wine tasting I hosted featuring wines from Australia, I chose 3 very different Shiraz wines.

And if a bottle or two of these wines don’t tempt your tastebuds to book a flight to Australia, then come with me to Taste your way around Australia – a 23 day food & wine tour in March 2013.  Get ready to pack your bags!

 

Campbell Winery Shiraz Durif

Victoria, Australia
$16.95 – on sale (regular $18.95)
VINTAGES 243592, 14.0% Alcohol

The Campbells are one of 12 family-owned wineries that make up Australia’s prestigious First Families of Wine. Together, this distinguished group represent 16 regions across 4 states with a combined working experience of more than 1200 years.

Today, two brothers Malcolm and Colin are the fourth generation to carry on the Campbell tradition started by their great grandfather John Campbell in the renowned region of Rutherglen in 1870. Malcolm as viticulturist while Colin is the winemaker.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: What is Durif? You might know it as Petit Syrah. Blended in to weave in the dark inky colour, earth & spice notes to the Shiraz characteristics of black cherry, blackberry & plums.  It is well balanced with good tannins, chocolate & black licorice finish. Durif is grown & used for blending primarily in Rutherglen wine region.

Suggested Food Pairings: This wine is begging a BBQ steak or lamb.

 

Ladies who Shoot their Lunch Shiraz

Victoria, Australia
$34.95
VINTAGES 243592, 14.0% Alcohol

If the name doesn’t grab you the outstanding taste will!  The Fowles family are committed to living off their land – farming & hunting the property. The previous vintage of this wine won the distinguished Great Australia Shiraz Challenge – setting this wine as a benchmark for all of Australia.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: This premium wine is crafted with 96% Shiraz & 4% Viognier grapes matured in 100+ year old 5000 litre casks. It is notably lighter than most Shiraz wines. Deep garnet in colour with pepper, black cherry & plum with warm spices laced into light acidity & tannins that carries into a long finish.

Suggested food pairings: Serve with game of course!

Jip Jip Rocks Sparkling Shiraz

Australia
$16.90
LCBO 212472, 13.0% Alcohol
Sparkling red wine makes a striking impression when poured into a glass. It has become an Australian classic. Located in South Australia, the Bryson family have had this winery since 1851.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Dry & medium bodied, this charming sparkler has lovely aromas of sweet dark fruit (black cherry, plum & fig) with a thread of cinnamon & toffee. The violet coloured mousse has a lively texture with some toasty, chocolaty notes. Hints of spice & cocoa linger on the very finish that is reminiscent of wild blackberry & raspberry.

Suggested food pairings: Flavourful & fun, this is a great wine to enjoy by the barbeque on a warm summer day or with a rich chocolate dessert!

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Say ‘cheese’ for a super summer snack

Posted by Vanessa

Thursday, August 9th, 2012
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My cheese pick this week is one of my “go to” cheeses of summer, The Fleur-en-Lait from Glengarry Fine Cheese.  A short jaunt from Ottawa you can find them on Highway 34 just North of Lancaster, and South of Alexandria.  The Fleur-en-Lait is produced from milk from Ayershire cows that graze on the cheese factory site grounds and is styled after popular Trappist St. Paulin cheese, aged for 4-5 months.

An apricot-hued washed-rind covers The Fleur-en-Lait’s pale gold smooth, silky, semi-firm open interior paste (cheese-speak for the inside of the cheese with small holes throughout). Aromas are pungent & wildly grassy as if you’re standing in the middle of a farmer’s field with the sun shining on your face. Complimentary rich flavors are an expression of summer milk, with nut, fruity, and grassy characteristics layered over a slathering of butter.

Unwind on the deck with a a slice (or three) of this cheese and glass of wine – in particular, Ladies who Shoot their Lunch Shiraz or Tahbilk Viognier featured recently at Savvy Company’s “Let’s go to Australia” Sommelier led wine tasting.  Or, if you happen to be in the neighborhood, why not make a quick pit stop at Beau’s All Natural Brewing Co. in Vankleek Hill and match with their sensational seasonal Festivale beer.

 

FACTBOX:
CheeseThe Fleur-en-Lait
ProducerGlengarry Fine Cheese
Interesting Fact:  Cheesemaking is one of the main sources of income for many monasteries where monks follow the Rule of St. Benedict, stating “for then are they monks in truth, if they live by the work of their hands”.

Enjoy! – Vanessa

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