Comment

Massolino 2016 Moscato d’Asti DOCG

Massolino 2016 Moscato d’Asti DOCG ($25.99) with Gateau Basque

From the beautiful and historic Asti region in Piedmont, northern Italy, comes this lightly sparkling and sweet wine from the “grape of the bees”, so-called by the ancient Romans because of its inherently floral, honeyed quality. For a variety of reasons, this style has fallen out of favour with serious wine nerds, but Massolino is not exactly the industrial moscato operation down the road: this comes from a single, 4 hectare site; yields are quite low; only about 3000 cases are made each vintage – a fraction of what the ‘big producers’ churn out. A delicate style bursting with aromas and flavours of orange, honeysuckle, pear and sage leaf. Serve at 9-10 C, and it is recommended that it be uncorked just prior to serving to fully appreciate the vibrant aromas and slight effervescence.

Comment

Comment

Hewitson 2015 Baby Bush Mourvèdre

Hewitson 2015 Baby Bush Mourvèdre ($29.99) with Chicken Basquaise & Rice Pilaf

Established in 1998, Hewitson is situated in the heart of the sunny Barossa Valley and boasts some of the oldest vines in the world. Among their acreage is the "Old Garden", a vineyard of Mourvèdre planted in 1853 by Friedrich Koch. It is the world's oldest-known surviving planting of this vine. Realising its potential and wanting to preserve the lineage, Dean Hewitson took cuttings of these elderly vines, and replanted them, nicknaming this site the "Baby Bush" vineyard. These vines take the pedigree of the world’s oldest Mourvèdre vineyard, yet have the vibrancy and bold confidence of youth. This grape, often used in Cotes du Rhone-style blends, is seldom the ‘star of the show’, particularly in France, but the Aussies love to showcase it all on its own. Dark blackberry and blueberry fruit is met with soft, ripe tannins, and a hint of underbrush.

Comment

Comment

Zarate 2016 Balado Albariño Rias Baixas DO

Zarate 2016 Balado Albariño Rias Baixas DO ($48.99) with Hake Galician Style

A family-owned and operated winery in Spain’s coveted Rias Baixas DO in Galicia. Rias Baixas attained its appellation status in 1998 with less than 40 wineries in operation, but has grown to over 240 today. Albariño, an aromatic grape variety probably related to Riesling, thrives in the cool, wet, and sandy soils of Galicia. This pairing follows the tried and true “what grows together, goes together” approach: locals would most certainly be enjoying a similar meal. Depending on viticultural practices and the vintage, this grape can range from lean and tightly wound to broad and fleshy, but a core fruit profile of peach and apricot is typical. Expect this wine to show great body and weight on the palate, with lifted floral aromas. Drink 10-13 C.

Comment

Comment

Barone Pizzini Animante Franciacorta Brut DOCG

Barone Pizzini Animante Franciacorta Brut DOCG ($32.99) with Baked Scallops & Clams in Marinara Sauce

Hailing from one of the oldest wineries in Franciacorta, Barone Pizzini was established in 1870 by the noble Pizzini Family. They were the first winery to implement and promote organic winemaking and sustainability in the region. Indeed, producers in Franciacorta use very unique techniques to fight diseases and pests in their vineyards. For example, to counter the devastating effects of the vine moth, pheromones are strategically placed throughout the vineyards to disrupt the moth’s mating cycle. This is an expensive but eco-friendly way to minimize the moth population. This wine is exceptionally balanced, with fresh acidity supported by a creamy mousse on the palate. Notes of apricot, honey, and something distinctively toasty – from the ‘champagne’-style in-bottle fermentation – linger on the long and expressive finish. Drink 8-10 C.

Comment

Comment

January 2018 Event Wines

WILD BOAR SPAGHETTI CARBONARA  with Reassi Terre d’Argilla Manzoni Bianco Colli Euganie DOC, Italia

I chose this wine for a couple of reasons. Firstly Carbonara is a very rich dish that requires a wine with a high level of acidity to cut through the fat. Secondly, I find that the pepper in the dish means that a wine that has a generous fruit quality will often show better than a super lean wine. This wine accomplishes all of those things. Manzoni Bianco is a cross between Riesling and either Chardonnay or Pinot Bianco ( the scientists are still debating this). It gives beautiful mineralogy, generous fruit and fresh acidity. It is considered to be one of the most promising white grape varieties in the Veneto region. Expect flavours of golden apple, pear and white blossom. On a fun side note I also chose this wine because of where it comes from! The estate where this wines made is just outside the village of Carbonara! The locals of Carbonara will tell you that Carbonara is not a Roman dish and that it was invented in this region of the Veneto! Not sure who is right but it is a fun connection.
Hand harvested and made from organic grapes. Terre d’Argilla refers to the unique and highly regarded clay soils on which the grapes for this wine are grown.

MIXED TUSCAN SALAD WITH CANDIED WALNUTS AND BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE with CàMaiol Chiaretto Rosato Valtenessi DOP, Italia
Among the diverse Italian rosé wines, the Garda Chiaretto is prized for its fragrance and its delicate perfume. It is declared in literature as a “one night wine” from the moment in which the vinification of the four grapes (Gardesana grapes related to the D.O.P. Garda Classic - Groppello, Marzemino, Sangiovese and Barbera), occurs with a brief contact between the must and the skins lasting only one night. 

This wine has a refreshing acidity that will hold up to the vinegar elements of the dressing and just the slightest hint of sweetness to match with the candied walnuts. This rose is a medium weight wine that pairs so well with a wide range of foods. Expect flavours of almond and strawberry with a touch of floral. 


BISTECCA ALLA FIORENTINA with Fabio Motta Pievi Bolgheri Rosso DOC, Italia
This wine is a blend of Merlot 50% - Cabernet Sauvignon 25% - Sangiovese 25% grown in the vineyards of Bolgheri, Tuscany. Fabio Motta is the winemaker for the famous winery Michele Satta and this wine comes from his own personal project. All of the grapes are grown organically and every vineyard process is completed by hand. This is only Fabio’s second vintage of this wine and it is garnering a lot of praise and attention from the press and public.  Expect flavours of plum, red cherry, cassis, cigar box, violets and a touch of oak spice. Everything is superbly balanced in this wine. Fine-grained tannins will pair beautifully with the bistecca and the balanced acidity will lead to a refreshed palate, ready for the next bite. 

CHOCOLATE AMARETTO CAKE AND STRAWBERRY PANNA COTTA with Innocent Bystander Moscato Yarra Valley, Australia
 From their website:
“The wine that launched a thousand moscato ships. Yeah, someone actually said that. It has also been referred to as angel tears. Naturally sweet, naturally bubbly, naturally delish and just a bit of fun.”

Innocent Bystander is an outstanding Yarra Valley producer that makes award winning Chards, Pinot Noir and Syrah. They also make a great little moscato that helps to pay the bills and fund the more serious wines! Expect flavours of strawberry, watermelon, candy floss, musk, blackcurrant, Turkish delight and mandarin peel. 

Comment

Comment

Moscatel du Setubal, Portugal

Winemaking: A short fermentation period halted with the addition of quality wine aguardente, followed by a period of post-fermentative maceration of the skins with the wine, for the duration of the winter after the harvest time.
Ageing: During minimum of 1 year in small used oak casks
Tasting notes: Intense moscatel aroma, orange flower, citrons, tea and raisins. In the mouth, the fruit is intense; it is a full-bodied wine, with sweet and sour sensations, and a long and persistent finish.

Served with dessert at April 2016 event

Comment

Comment

Vaglio 2013 Chango Blend, Argentina

The 2013 Chango is a blend of 65% Malbec, 20% Tannat, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon from Altamira and Cafayate.  All the grapes for this wine were handpicked and hand-sorted.  There were only 500 cases of this exclusive wine produced.  Aromas of plum, black cherry, and blueberry combine with hints of wood smoke, sage and sandalwood to create an exotic and earthy nose.  On the palate the intense fruit is accented by notes of mocha and dusty earth, and enveloped in soft, silky tannins and fresh acidity.  This wine can be enjoyed now with a short decant or a grilled flank steak and chimichurri.  Cellar through 2019.

Served with beef at April 2016 event

Comment

Comment

Clos de Sixte 2013 Lirac AOC, France

50% Grenache noir, 35% Syrah,15% Mourvèdre.

Winemaking & ageing
Traditional wine-making in stainless still vats. Hand sorted bunches, crushed and destemmed grapes.
Ageing in concrete vats and french oak barrels. 

Tasting
Intense inky colour. On the nose, aromas of red and black ripe fruit (kirsch and wild
Blackberry) are dominant. The mouth is full, with aromas of blackcurrant liquor and spice. Tannins are both harmonious and elegant thanks to the fleshy of the wine. The end display hints of liquorice and vanilla, which give to the wine length and complexity.

Served with Beef at April 2016 event

Comment

Comment

Curator White

This white blend is made up of three grape varieties; Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay and Viognier. All the grapes are handpicked. Predominantly Chenin Blanc, this wine has great structure and a nice medium body, the chardonnay is fermented with natural yeast adding flavours of dried peaches, apricots and ripe citrus. The Viognier helps to add a bit of spice and complexity to the finish. Overall this wine is a wonderful food wine.

Served with Focaccia at April 2016 event

Comment

Comment

Tawse 2013 Sketches Rose Niagara, Canada

Sketches Rosé marks the arrival of spring at Tawse! The 2013 vintage is an approachable blend of Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir and Merlot. To impart structure and colour, it was made using the “saignée” method though which we combine the free-run juice of red grapes before they are pressed. Ripe and juicy, this wine delivers a lovely nose of fresh strawberry, raspberry and red currant. On the palate, vibrant notes of cranberry and mint are deftly balanced with just the right amount of acidity, sweetness and a clean crisp finish.
 While perfectly enjoyable on its own, it is also extremely food-friendly. It’s refreshing acidity should cut through the richness of the fries but the subtle sweetness should be able to handle the heat from the jalepeno, while not overwhelming the subtle flavours of the pickerel.

Served with Pickerel Cheeks at April 2016 Event

Comment

Comment

Bertha nv Lounge Cava, Spain

A  young Cava wine which has gone through only 9 to 13 months of maturation. It is this youthfulness that provides its most appreciated values - it is fresh, fruity, aromatic and with prevailing primary aromas of the grape itself. The grape varietals chosen for its elaboration are Xarel·lo and Parellada. Cava Bertha Lounge is a special cava with contemporary touches. A different glass adapted to our times. Easy to drink and perfect to experiment with.

Welcome wine at April 2016 event

Comment

Comment

Penfold's Tawny

Served with Sticky Toffee Pudding and Bacon Ice Cream at March 2016 event.

In 1844 Christopher Rawson Penfold planted vines on the slopes of Magill to produce fortified wines. 

Penfolds is now proud to present a range of fortified wines that is a continuation of more than 160 years of winemaking tradition. For nearly 60 years Penfolds Club has been one of Australia's favourite choices of Tawny. Beginning life as Penfolds Five Star Club Tawny in the 1940s, this wine has grown with the nation. Penfolds Club Reserve is blended from more than 200 components to offer the complexity and consistency that is expected of the Penfolds'house'style and has an average age of three years. 

Luscious fruit sweetness balanced by drier barrel-matured characters and subtle spirit. The wine has rich flavours of spicy dried fruit, butterscotch and walnuts before a long, lingering finish. Should be a perfect complement to the caramel flavours of the dessert and should be intense enough to handle all that the bacon ice cream can throw at it! 

Comment

Comment

Luigi Baudana 2012 Dragon Langhe Rosso DOC, Italy

Served with Carbonara at March 2016 Event.

Luigi Baudana 15 one of the last garagiste estates in Langhe With just 4 quality hectares, they are located in some of the most prestigious Barolo crus in Serralunga, Alba, The wines of the Luigi Baudana collection are an expression of powerful, genuine and true to-terroir wines, expressing the best of the Nebbíolo grape.  Baudana, the family name, the historical cru and the hamlet, is a sign of just how deep the family's roots are tied to this land. In 2009 Luigi Baudana entrusted the Vaira family with his historical vines in Serralunga d'Alba.

This wonderful wine is a blend of Nebbiolo and Barbera. Full of ripe red fruit, spice, bins of earth and mushroom, The structure of this wine should pair wonderfully with the rich, salty character of the carbonara. The fresh acidity will help refresh and cleanse the palate, while the hints of earth and spice should complement the cured pork in the dish. This wine is medium weight and is more about elegance than power.

Comment

Comment

Lini 910 Lambrusco

Served with appetizers during March 2016 Event.

Serve chilled and from a wine glass NOT a flute

The Lini family's traditional Lambrusco Rosso, low in alcohol, with bright acidity and loads of fruit, is a perfect pairing for the classic dishes of Emilia like the region's famous cured meats. This is real
Lambrusco.

Labrusca Lambrusco Rosso Reggiano DOC : From 85% Lambrusco Salamino + 15% Lambrusco Ancellotta,from secondary fermentation in autoclave for 3 months, at a controlled temperature. The Lini method yields especially small, elegant perlage, which enhances digestibility.

Intense ruby red color with purple reflections ; extremely fragrant bouquet, showing lush aromas of red fruit, especially blueberry & raspberry, confirmed on the well balanced, structured palate with
distinctive flavor intensity & balance and a slightly tannic.

Eating fatty, salty cured meats with fruity, lightly fizzy red wine is an age-old way of life in northern Italy's Emilia-Romagna region. The acidity of the Lambrusco cuts through the fat and the salt of many cured meats and rich dishes. The wine's effervescence and hint of sweetness, along with its acidity, helps cut through the intensity of the meats and refreshes the palate.

Comment

Comment

Alice May 2012 Crosswinds Syrah Santa Ynez, USA

Alice May 2012 Crosswinds Syrah Santa Ynez, USA

Although there has been some argument that Syrah originated in Persia, recent research from UC Davis confirms that the grape is native to France’s Rhône Valley. In the Northern Rhône, particularly in Côte Rôtie, Syrah grapes are often co-planted, co-harvested and co-fermented with the white grape variety, Viognier. The result is a spicy red wine with beautiful floral notes and intense aromatics. In the 1990s the wines of the Rhône enjoyed a re-discovery of sorts and Californian grape growers began to plant the famous grape varieties and craft similar styles of wine. These winemakers came to be known as the “Rhône Rangers”.  

Alice May Crosswinds can be considered such a wine. The 2012 vintage is made from 95% Syrah co-fermented with 5% Viognier. The grapes are grown in the Santa Ynez Valley in California, a region, which although very southern in location, enjoys cooler temperatures due to its proximity to the ocean. The grapes are grown in the Camp 4 vineyard, owned by the Santa Ynez Chumash Indian Band. At this time over 40 producers’ farm the Camp 4 vineyards and strive to use the most sustainable growing practices possible.  This Rhône Valley-inspired wine is crafted from Californian fruit by a group of Canadians out of Calgary—a truly international wine! 

Limited production coupled to a huge following makes Alice May wine difficult to find even in its home province. Enjoy this special treat and the first time these wines are landing on Manitoba soil!  Enjoy now through 2019.

Comment

Comment

Rob Dolan 2012 True Colours Chardonnay Yarra Valley, Australia

Rob Dolan 2012 True Colours Chardonnay Yarra Valley, Australia

Rob Dolan is a towering, ex-Aussie rules football player and somewhat god-like in his home city of Adelaide, South Australia. However, it’s in the Yarra Valley, Victoria where he has been making his name for the past 20 years as a winemaker. In 2011 he acquired the Yarra Burn Winery, which was a state of the art winery. In 2012 he released the first wines under his ownership, simply known as” Rob Dolan”. The True Colours range refers to the fact that Rob never hides his true colours. He is friendly, approachable and extremely likeable – just like his wines!! The winery also doubles as a consultant winemaking facility.

In 2013 Rob won the James Halliday “2014 Newcomer of the Year” award.

This Chardonnay, after 10 months in barrel has amazing freshness of fruit but swathed in creamy oak. The palate is full of stone fruit and has balanced acidity.

Comment

Comment

Tedeschi 2013 Corasco IGT delle Venezie, Italia

Tedeschi 2013 Corasco IGT delle Venezie, Italia

This wine is made from grapes selected form the Venetian territories: 

Corvina variety grown on the Moraine hills in the heart of Valpolicella, Raboso variety grown in Oderzo (Treviso), and Refosco variety grown in Aquileia. This wine is made in a traditional Veronese manner: raisin-drying of the grapes. The effect is partial dehydration: the grapes, placed  in crates for about one month, lose about 8-10 % of their weight. This water loss naturally enriches the sugar contents of the grapes, their dry extract, and the colour of the wine. Pre-fermentation aromas are formed during drying and these subsequently blend with fermentation aromas and, above all, with tertiary aromas coming from aging the wine in wooden barrels.

The Corasco is intense and elegant: ripe fruit aroma (currants, black cherries) with the vanilla and tobacco of Slavonian oak.  Medium plus body with lively acidity and well balanced with tannins, a complex and A very versatile wine which, can be enjoyed throughout the meal, perfect from pasta to cheeses.

Serve at: 16-18° C

Comment

Comment

Tedeschi 2014 Soave DOC, Italia

Tedeschi 2014 Soave DOC, Italia

This wine is produced with grapes originating from the vineyards located in the hills of the Soave area, in the commune of Monteforte d’Alpone, near Verona.  The name of the city of Soave, and thus the wine, derives from “Svevi” or “Suavi”, after the population that attempted to conquer Italy in the year 568.  

This wine is 100% Garganega.  The wine is a lovely straw yellow and has a bouquet of ripe apple, lemon and hints of chamomile and almond.  A great pairing to a variety of classic Italian dishes, but the ripe fruit quality should pair particularly well with the vegetable, fish and cheese dishes.  Serve at 10-12 degrees.

Comment

Comment

TonyK

Guicciardini Strozzi Cusona Brut nv Spumante di Vernaccia di San Gimingnano, Italia

The Strozzi family are the 15th generation of descendants of Lisa Gherardini del Giocondo, otherwise known as La Gioconda, painted by Leonardo da Vinci and also count themselves as ancestors of Sir Winston Churchill.

The Cusona estate spreads over 530 hectares and is situated amongst the green Tuscan hills, close to the medieval town of San Gimignano (known as the medieval Manhattan).  It's here, back in 994, that the earliest wines were produced.

The Vernaccia grapes used in the production of this wine were harvested early to capture the vibrant acidity necessary to produce a well-made sparkling wine.  The bubbles are produced using the Charmat method and the wine is allowed to develop in contact with the yeast lees for several months.  

This wine is delicately fruity with hints of pear, apple and citrus fruits, complimented by brioche notes.  An excellent aperitif, that pairs well with an assortment of canapés.

Comment

Comment

Blandy’s Malmsey 10 Year Rich Madiera, Portugal

Blandy's 10 Year Old Malmsey Madeira has intensely concentrated nutty, caramel and honeyed flavors. Although it is a rich, fortified wine, it finishes bright due to Madeira's higher acidity.  Blandy's 10 Year Old Malmsey Madeira is bottled ready to drink after an average of at least ten years of cask aging. It has a t-cap closure, which means that you don't need a corkscrew to open it and that it will stay fresh for many months if stored in a cool, dark place or refrigerator. Serve it in a glass with at least a six ounce capacity so that you may appreciate the wine's aromas. It is delicious with nutty desserts like almond cake or pecan pie and anything made with rich chocolate!  In warmer months, try it chilled for a refreshing dessert in a glass.

October 2015 paired with Baklava

Comment