Posts Tagged ‘LCBO Vintages release February 16’

Wines to warm your winter

Posted by Julie

Friday, February 15th, 2013
Share

Ottawa in February offers many wintery activities but Winterlude is truly our city’s greatest celebration: skating on the canal, viewing the ice sculptures, walking around the market restaurants to taste what the chef’s have specially prepared to celebrate, so that you do not have to waste much time doing routine things like shopping, here is a quick ‘must by list’ of wines available in LCBO Vintages release as of February 16.

This release features heart warming Cabernet red wines, a few  Kosher wines for Passover as well as some Ontario award winning wines.

What is Kosher wine?

I have never written anything on a Kosher wine, but after tasting many delicious Kosher wines in this release, I found myself doing research on Jewish traditions. Familiar with the term “Kosher”, I did not realize that kosher wines must be processed by only Sabbath-observant Jewish males touching the grapes from the crushing phase through to the bottling.

Kosher wines also differ from those made specifically for Passover. These wines must be made from mould (all wines require some mould or yeast) that has not been grown on bread and cannot have any common preservatives such as potassium sorbate. There is also a “P” on the label which means it is meant for Passover.  While I wrote on one Kosher wine below, there is another in this release I really liked called Segal’s Fusion Merlot/Cabernet Franc/Cabernet Sauvignon (KPM) 2001 (Israel)  that is made by a former poet, journalist and barman. With all that on his CV, he probably sleeps well at night.

If you too are curious about Kosher wines, this is the time of year when there are many at the LCBO – so pick one up & give it a try!

I won’t be blogging again until April since I am off to work in Shanghai, but I can’t wait to catch up with you again in April.

Cheers to Winterlude…and Happy Passover!

Julie

 

Clay Station Unoaked Viognier 2011

Lodi, California, U.S.A.
$16.95 (Vintages #25411) 13.5% alcohol

I have read that the Viognier grape is somewhat temperamental to grow but am grateful that some winemakers got it right. It has been described similarly to Chardonnay in that it shares tropical fruit flavours and has a creamy mouthfeel. This Viognier is pale golden in colour with tantilizing aromas of blossoms and honey. It is smooth and velvety in texture and oh so deliciously mouthcoating with apricots, mango and a little vanilla and caramel on the after taste. It’s bone dry but with distinct richness in flavour. For the price point, I think it’s spectacular.

 

Fielding Estate Riesling 2011

VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada
$18.95 (Vintages #251439) 10.5% alcohol

This Riesling is so deliciously fresh and clean tasting. Lots of citrusy expression with an undermining of minerality and stone, softly textured with subtle fruit flavours and plain lip-smacking good. It is a fabulous afternoon sipper or would be great with spicey chicken, pork chops and of course any fish dish. It’s a very versatile food wine.

Château Cailleteau Bergeron 2010

AC Blaye-Cotes-de-Bordeaux, France
$17.95 (Vintages# 309138) 14% alcohol

This wine won a Gold Medal at the 2012 Concours Général Agricole in Paris! I try not to pick the “already winners”, but write on ones that I think are really good wines. With a blend of 80% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, !0% Malbec, how could this Bordeaux not be delicious.  Aromas of violets and red ripe berries that follow through on the palet, medium bodied with a little tobacco, soft tannins, and a tad spice are all the yummies that develop in your senses. They persist and make for a really smooth finish.

Five Stones Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (KPM) 2010    *KOSHER

Margaret River, Western Australia Beckett’s Flat
$19.95 (Vintages #157305)  13.5% alcohol

The Five Stones Winery used to be called Beckett’s Flat and has been producing kosher wine since 1998. They are located in the southwest corner of Australia surrounded by three sides of ocean. Their wines are processed without the use of any animal products and under strict kosher supervision, all suitable for Passover and Mevushal.

I just couldn’t spit this wine and had to swallow. If that sounds funny, try tasting over 50 wines in a morning. Sound familiar to any other sommeliers out there?  Blends of dark fruits, blackberries, plum, tobacco, leather  and spice on the nose following through with a harmony of bone dry fruit flavours, soft tannins and oh so drinkable.  Since I am not Jewish I kept wondering if I would be in frowned upon. But it’s a lovely, well-made Cab and I’d be proud to have it on my dining table – regardless of what denomination is comng for dinner.

 

Fairview Caldera Grenache/Shiraz/Mourvedre 2008

WO Coastal Region, Charles Back, South Africa
$22.95 (Vintages #3013330) 14% alcohol

This is another fabulous blend of 50% Grenache (68-70 year old bush vines), 25% Shiraz and 25% Mourvedre aged in old wooden 225-liter barrels. Lots of dark berries and quite peppery that makes it interesting and edgy. Very dry but elegant on the palate with strong blackberry flavours making it quite a rich wine. Would be fabulous with a steak or rack of lamb with some buttery spuds.

 

Grand Total: $ 96.75

 

 

Share