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Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Tasting Notes

Tastings: December 2018

11 December 2018

Clos du Soleil Estate Reserve Redtext
91PTS

Clos du Soleil Estate Reserve Red 2014

Similkameen Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe estate wines, noted by their white label, are seen as the pinnacle of their portfolio, and reflective of their Keremeos estate vineyards. The 2014 Estate Reserve is a blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, petit verdot, cabernet franc, malbec, aged for 18 months in French oak. You definitely feel the 45 percent merlot in the plush, velveteen plum, with blackberry compote, violet waves, cedar spicing and anise dusted, warming finish. Tannins are dusky, tuggy, but appropriate for the heft of the fruit, and support to the sweetly perfumed plum that lingers on the finish. More chisled acidity would take this to the next level, though this is drinking very well right now.Prices: BC 60.00 Producer: Clos du Soleil Winery
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10 December 2018

Martin's Lane Fritzi’s Vineyard Rieslingtext
92PTS

Martin's Lane Fritzi’s Vineyard Riesling 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFritzi's Vineyard, named for owner Anthony von Mandl's 101-year-old mother, is a small vineyard at the base of West Kelowna's Mt. Boucherie, also the home site of Mission Hill. The riesling from Fritzi's, clos 21B and planted in 1999, is the first parcel picked by Martin's Lane winemaker Shane Munn every year. Forty percent of this was fermented in stück (1200L barrels) with nine months elevage on lees, and sees minimal sulphur. Textural, savoury and expansive on the bold, 14 degree palate, with flicks of brown butter and a slight grip around the side, finishing with a lick of flintiness. This harmonious wine is not about the fruit, but all about the texture and site. Serious wine, and an age worthy one. 8.4 TA, 2.79 pH.Prices: BC 75.00 Producer: Martin's Lane Winery
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Martin's Lane Simes Vineyard Rieslingtext
90PTS

Martin's Lane Simes Vineyard Riesling 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSimes Vineyard is a steep, north facing site in East Kelowna, based on granite soils. This is the first release riesling from the site, all clone 49, native fermented and with nine months on the lees. Unlike the savoury and textural Fritzi's Riesling this is all about buzzy, tight fruit: cool perfumed pear, lime pith, green apple, lemon verbena and a nimble aromatic lift. Lovely now in youth. clone 49, native ferment, 9 mos on lees. 13%, 7.5 g/l TA, pH 3.06. 5 g/l RS. Tight, cool pear, great fine spicing. always the last to be picked. Tight, fine lemon verbena. Lemon pith on the finish. nimble, perfumed pear on the finish.Prices: BC 55.00 Producer: Martin's Lane Winery
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09 December 2018

J-M Sélèque Champagne Solessence Rosétext
91PTS

J-M Sélèque Champagne Solessence Rosé NV

Champagne, FranceSélèque began in 1965, when Henri Sélèque planted his first plots of vines with the help of his father-in-law, Jean Bagnost, president of the Pierry wine cooperative. Henri's son Richard moved the winery into the modern era, and since 2008 third gen Jean-Marc oversees the estate, based in the Coteaux Sud d’Epernay. Since Jean-Marc arrived, no herbicides have been used at the estate. This pretty pink fizz opens with a garden of pink florals braced with pink grapefruit acidity and a pomegranate pop. Cherry, red currant, candied apple dominate the luxuriously pastry-lined, medium bodied palate to the snappy, red apple skin finish. The rosé is the same base blend as the blanc Solessence (45 chardonnay, 40 meunier and 15 pinot noir from seven villages). The majority of the wine is fermented in stainless with full MLF, though 10 percent is fermented in oak barrels and without MLF. For the rosé, they add 10 percent pinot meunier (infused after two days with skins) as well as five percent Coteaux Champenois sourced from Les Gayères. The 40 percent reserve wines are stored in a perpetual reserve (mix of tanks and barrels) that dates back to 2000. My bottle was based on the 2016 vintage, and spent a minimum of 18 months on the lees before being disgorged in July 2018 with 3 g/l dosage.Prices: BC 57.00 Producer: Champagne Jean Marc Sélèque
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Champagne J-M Sélèque Solessence Bruttext
90PTS

Champagne J-M Sélèque Solessence Brut NV

Champagne, FranceSélèque began in 1965, when Henri Sélèque planted his first plots of vines with the help of his father-in-law, Jean Bagnost, president of the Pierry wine cooperative. Henri's son Richard moved the winery into the modern era, and since 2008 third gen Jean-Marc oversees the estate, based in the Coteaux Sud d’Epernay. Since Jean-Marc arrived, no herbicides have been used at the estate. For this wine, the grower house sources fruit from seven villages across the Marne Valley and the Côte des Blancs, namely Pierry, Moussy, Epernay, Mardeuil, Dizy, Boursault and Vertus, half of which are farmed biodynamically. With minimal intervention in the vineyard and winery, this is a blend of 50/40/10 chardonnay/pinot meunier/pinot noir, based on the 2016 vintage. The majority sees stainless and full MLF, though ten percent is fermented in oak and sees no MLF. The 30 percent reserve wines are stored in large tanks and wood casks as a perpetual reserve dating back to 2000. The whole spends 18 months on the lees before a dosage of 3 g/l and was bottled without fining or filtration. Yellow, red apples, melon, tropical fruit fill out a full, fleshy palate. This opens and carries a punch of fruit and swing of weight to a snappy finish.Prices: BC 49.99 AB 58.50 Producer: Champagne R et JM Sélèque
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Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Rosé Extra Bruttext
92PTS

Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Rosé Extra Brut NV

Champagne, FranceChampagne Lelarge-Pugeot is an eighth generation winery in the 1er cru village of Vrigny, where the family has been growing since 1799, and producing since 1930. They moved to organics in 1985, and became certified biodynamic in 2017. They own 8.7 ha of vineyards, which are carved into 42 distinct parcels, all on calcareous clay loam and sand. This pinot noir rosé is from 30 year old vines, fermented and rested for six months in tank and blended with 7 percent Coteaux Champensois 2011 before being bottled in April 2012 prior to three years en tirage. This was disgorged in July 2016. The medium pink hued fizz is imbued with strawberry, wild cherry, raspberry brioche and red / pink florals that dart around the mouth buoyed by brisk acidity. There's a gentle padding on the palate, the result of three years on the lees. An offset dosage less than 5 g/l is necessary to balance out the high acidity. As with all of the Lelarge Pugeot wines, there is a riff of meringue that lingers on the finish. Impressive.Prices: BC 75.00 Producer: Champagne Lelarge Pugeot
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Pol Roger Brut Reservetext
91PTS

Pol Roger Brut Reserve NV

Champagne, FranceElegance and refinement has always been the hallmark of this multi-vintage Champagne, made with equal parts pinot noir, pinot meunier and chardonnay from 30 different crus. The key is 25 percent reserve wines added to the mix to bring complexity and the ability to balance off any shortcomings in the current vintage fruit. The wine spends four years in the cellars. Inviting warm, brioche notes, hazelnuts and red apples and tangerine spill across its delicate, chalky palate. A favourite for the price with this writer.Prices: BC 69.99 ON 66.00 QC 63.00 NF 72.00 NB 65.00 BC 39.99 375 NS 67.00 Producer: Champagne Pol Roger
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Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Les Meuniers de Clemencetext
92PTS

Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Les Meuniers de Clemence NV

Champagne, FranceChampagne Lelarge-Pugeot is an eighth generation winery in the 1er cru village of Vrigny, where the family has been growing since 1799, and producing since 1930. They moved to organics in 1985, and became certified biodynamic in 2017. They own 8.7 ha of vineyards, which are carved into 42 distinct parcels, all on calcareous, clay loam and sand. It's rare to find a 100 percent meunier champagne, and even rarer to find an entirely drinkable, interesting one. AND even more improbable is to find is one that is organic / biodynamic / family owned and operated. Lovely red fruit driven wine, though more suggestive, rather than overtly so. Wild cherries, red currant, white peach, wafts of cherry blossoms, all riveted by green apple acidity, bound by raspy sides, and cushioned comfortably by a thin cushion of lees. This skips along the palate with an easy energy, finishing on a pillow of salted meringue. Wow. Highly unique, highly impressive.Prices: BC 95.00 Producer: Champagne Lelarge Pugeot
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Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Tradition Extra Bruttext
92PTS

Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Tradition Extra Brut NV

Champagne, FranceChampagne Lelarge-Pugeot is an eighth generation winery in the 1er cru village of Vrigny, where the family has been growing since 1799, and producing since 1930. They moved to organics in 1985, and became certified biodynamic in 2017. They own 8.7 ha of vineyards, which are carved into 42 distinct parcels, all on calcareous, clay loam and sand. The vines used for Tradition is an extra brut blend of 65 meunier, 20 pinot noir and 15 chardonnay, are 25 years old. This bottle was based on the 2011 vintage with 30 percent reserve wines, spent six months in tank (fermented naturally with their pied de cuve), underwent natural MLF, before 3-4 years on lees in bottle and disgorgement in March 2016, with a dosage of 5 g/l. Red apple, orange, white cherry, apricot scone, is lifted with grapefruit pithy acidity and a white tea grip to a bright, snappy, lingering finish. There's a pad of lightly earthy lees to authenticate and ground the medium bodied palate, one still sharpened by the extra brut dosing. Highly impressive, especially considering the biodynamic nature in such a challenging fringe area.Prices: BC 65.00 Producer: Champagne Lelarge Pugeot
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Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Nature et Non Dosétext
91PTS

Champagne Lelarge Pugeot Nature et Non Dosé NV

Champagne, FranceChampagne Lelarge-Pugeot is an eighth generation winery in the 1er cru village of Vrigny, where the family has been growing since 1799, and producing since 1930. They moved to organics in 1985, and became certified biodynamic in 2017. They own 8.7 ha of vineyards, which are carved into 42 distinct parcels, all on calcareous, clay loam and sand. As the name implies, Nature is a natural wine, with zero dosage and no sulphur added. The 50 percent meunier, 25 each pinot noir / chardonnay is from vines 35 years old, and taken from the 2014 harvest. After a six month ferment and rest split equally between tank and barrel, this heads to bottle where it spends 16 months on the lees. It was disgorged in November 2016. This is a tight and chiseled wine, led by green apple and lemon, and followed by red apple and white cherry. There's a riffing, grippy jolt of acidity that vibrates along the length of this slender form, finishing with a satisfying, salty snap. Impressive.Prices: BC 85.00 Producer: Champagne Lelarge Pugeot
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Champagne Marie-Courtin Condordancetext
91PTS

Champagne Marie-Courtin Condordance NV

Champagne, FranceDominique Moreau created the Cote des Bar estate, named for her grandmother, in 2005 with the sole goal to produce single-vineyard, single variety, single vintage Champagnes from biodynamically-grown grapes. These vines are 35-40 years in age from a single, 2.5 hectares parcel located in Polisot, my bottle harvested in 2011 and disgorged in 2014. This was native fermented (for both ferments) in tank before resting on the lees for three years before being bottled without dosage or sulphur. This is one of, if not the only (?) sans souffe (meaning please) Champagne available. Burnished and textural, with wild mushroom, sweet/savoury dough, lees, bitter bergamot kisses and fine smoked salts on the textural finish. There's a lovely controlled wildness and power here which is alluring and interesting, inviting glass after glass. Impressive and memorable bottle.Prices: BC 110.00 Producer: Champagne Marie-Courtin
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Vouette & Sorbée Blanc d'Argile Extra Bruttext
87PTS

Vouette & Sorbée Blanc d'Argile Extra Brut NV

Champagne, FranceThe Demeter-certified Vouette & Sorbée has made an impact in a very short amount of time. The Aube-based grower house has only been releasing their own wines since 2001; Founder Bertrand Gautherot used to sell grapes to other producers, including Anselme Selosse. He farms 5 ha of Kimmeridgian marls and Portlandia limestones in the village of Buxières-sur-Arce. This is near as natural as Champagne gets, native fermented, sulphur-free until bottling, no dosage... The wines aren't vintage dated since they only spend 20 months on the lees (vs the minimum 36 months required by the AOC for vintage declaration), though he lists the base wine year and disgorgement date on the label. My bottle of chardonnay was based on 2010, and disgorged December 2012. Earthy, meadow grass, cider apples are gripped with grapefruit pithiness and a swing of orange balsamic. Acidity is racy, pulsing this forward to a buzzy finish. Sharp, raw and real. If you're looking for an earthy, natural Champagne, here you go. Bottle variation is a big thing with this producer, and this one wasn't shining.Prices: BC 115.00 Producer: Vouette & Sorbée
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Billecart-Salmon Blanc de Blancs Bruttext
93PTS

Billecart-Salmon Blanc de Blancs Brut NV

Champagne, FranceThis is sourced from the five grand cru vineyards of the Côte des Blancs: Avize, Chouilly, Cramant, Mesnil-sur-Oger, and Oger, and is a blend of two years. 33-40 percent reserve wines, 4-5 years on lees, and a dosage of 8 g/l provides a very cushioned base to support the layers of shortbread, lemon sherbet, green apple, pear, vanilla wafer, white blossom, rafted by a fine, pixellated acidity that finishes firmly and with ample chalkiness. In 1818, Nicolas François Billecart and Elisabeth Salmon were married, and founded Maison Billcart-Salmon, in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ, where they were based.Prices: BC 133.00 Producer: Champagne Billecart-Salmon
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Champagne Henriot Rosétext
89PTS

Champagne Henriot Rosé NV

Champagne, FranceFounded in 1808, Henriot is one of the few remaining independent family houses with over two hundred years of history in the region. This is entirely from Montagne de Reims, a cepage of 50/40/10 pinot noir/chardonnay/pinot meunier, with 35 percent reserve wines (inducing a small amount of their perpetual reserve) and three years on lees. Lightly toasted brioche beds the cherry, strawberry, red currant fruits, infiltrated with hearty black peppery spice and tightened with a pink grapefruit tension and black tea rinse. 8-9 g/l dosage.Prices: BC 90.00 Producer: Champagne Henriot
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Champagne Moutard Pere et Fils Brut Grande Cuvéetext
89PTS

Champagne Moutard Pere et Fils Brut Grande Cuvée NV

Champagne, FranceThis blanc de noirs (100 percent pinot noir) was entirely sourced from the clay-limestone soils of the Côte des Bar and the villages of Buxeuil and Polisy. There's a lovely tension between tight lemon peel and rich cherry brioche which welcomes investigation, and a second glass. Three years on the lees, and a 10 g/l dosage reveals itself in the proliferation of roasted almonds and hazelnuts, bread dough, toasty ginger spice, all nipped tight with prickling acidity. Fantastic price for a Champagne ready to match grilled / spiced chicken or roasted winter squash. The Moutard family have been making wine since the seventeenth century, and this is their flagship wine.Prices: BC 47.00 Producer: Champagne Moutarde Pere et Fils
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Champagne Jacquesson Cuvée n° 741 Extra-Bruttext
92PTS

Champagne Jacquesson Cuvée n° 741 Extra-Brut NV

Champagne, FranceChampagne Jacquesson was founded in 1798 by Memmi Jacquesson, and was a house favourited by Napoleon, who bestowed it a gold medal for its cellars. The winery has been innovative from the beginning, instituting the radical notion of training vines in rows with the collaboration of Dr. Guyot, and patenting the muselet, the wire cage that holds the cork in place. The real innovation, however, began in 1978, when the Chiquet family purchased the house, and brothers Jean-Hervé and Laurent spend the next ten years campaigning to their father to do something radically different, from the structure of the company to vineyard management. In 2000 they took a bigger risk and announced the 700 series. This numbered, vintage-based cuvée began with ‘728’, represented by the 2000 vintage. Rather than making a consistent NV wine every year, they aim to make the best possible blend each vintage. Each year, a new-subsequently numbered-cuvée is released, meaning this current release 741 is from 2013, harvested from Aÿ, Dizy, Hautvillers, Avize and Oiry, along with reserve wines. The cepage is 52 chardonnay 22 pinot meunier and 21 pinot noir, vinifiied and rested on lees in oak foudres before bottle, and disgorged with 2.5 g/l with no filtration or fining in November 2017. Earthy and savoury up front, with burnished lemon, yellow apple, hazelnuts, red currant, kisses of quince and ample filigreed acidity that streaks along the medium+ palate, one bound by pink grapefruit pith. Rock salt lingers on the finish. Lovely intensity and depth now, and one that will only build with cellaring.Prices: BC 100.00 AB 80.00 NS 81.50 Producer: Champagne Jacquesson
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Moêt & Chandon Grand Vintagetext
91PTS

Moêt & Chandon Grand Vintage 2012

Champagne, FranceThe 2012 Grand Reserve is the 74th release of the vintage wine, one that the winery has been producing since 1842. This year's blend is 41 Chardonnay, 26 Pinot Meunier and 33 Pinot Noir, with a dosage of 5 g/l. The red fruits are centre stage, with a deep bed of cherry, raspberry brioche and ample spice cut with a stream of acidity. Doughy and cushy, this is a luxurious styled Champagne for richer food pairings.Prices: BC 82.99 QC 89.25 ON 84.00 AB 87.99 MB 87.98 Producer: Moet & Chandon
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Champagne Castelnau Réservetext
88PTS

Champagne Castelnau Réserve NV

Champagne, FranceThis reserve from Castelnau spent six years on the lees, and is a blend of 40 chardonnay and 20 percent each pinot meunier and pinot noir. This has twenty percent reserve wines and a dosage of eight grams / litre. This is produced by the cooperative CRVC, and is a very good example. Dough, cream, red apple, over a doughy bed of lees. Acidity is lifted to carry the heft.Prices: BC 62.00 Producer: Champagne Castelnau
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Moêt & Chandon Grand Vintagetext
91PTS

Moêt & Chandon Grand Vintage 2009

Champagne, FranceAfter a run of chardonnay-led vintages, pinot noir stole back the spotlight in 2009, filling half the blend, while chardonnay steps back to 36 percent and pinot noir takes the remainder. Though Moêt vintage has been made since 1842, this is only the 73rd time a vintage has been declared and released. Vintage Moêt represents only 5 percent of the house's overall production. As with all the recent vintages, this aged seven years in the cellars, followed by a six month settling after disgorgement and 5 g/l dosage, prior to release in 2017. Unlike the slender/sharper 2006 and 2008, this has a breadth to the palate reflective of 2009, with ripe pear, vanilla brioche, baked apple and orange/ginger spicing on the finish.Prices: BC 82.99 QC 89.25 ON 84.00 AB 87.99 MB 87.98 Producer: Moet & Chandon
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Champagne Ruinart R de Ruinart Bruttext
91PTS

Champagne Ruinart R de Ruinart Brut NV

Champagne, FranceIf you know champagne, you know Ruinart. The house was founded in 1729 by Nicolas Ruinart in the city of Reims, the year after Louis XV gave his consent for sparkling wines to be shipped in baskets about Europe. That helped Ruinart, today the oldest House in Champagne. Ruinart’s rotund bottle (always a hit with guests) contains 40 percent chardonnay and 60 percent pinot noir with 40 percent reserve wine from the previous two years. I love the mix of finesse and complexity from a wine that goes through full malolactic, yet remains fresh and vibrant on the tongue. The fruit is pristine with green apple, lemon pith and a lovely chalky toasty affair that wraps up the finish. As it is most years, persistent and elegant.Prices: BC 76.99 QC 81.00 AB 78.99 MB 82.43 Producer: Ruinart Champagne
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Veuve Clicquot Rosé Bruttext
91PTS

Veuve Clicquot Rosé Brut NV

Champagne, FranceIt’s sometimes hard to imagine a wine with 50 to 60 moving parts, but this rosé comes from that number of crus, and just to keep it VC-like, the blend is more or less the same as its Yellow Label cousin at 44 to 48 percent pinot noir, 13 to 18 percent meunier and 25 to 29 percent chardonnay. Now get ready for more: there is 25 to 40 percent reserve wines from up to five harvests to keep the VC house style in place. La Cuvée Rosé, one of the bestselling rosé champagnes in the world, and one of the few still made using the saignée method, completes the blend with 12 percent of red wine using red grapes specially raised and selected to give a marvellous balance and colour to this wine. Again, bright fresh red fruits with a strong citrus, leesy, biscuit undertone with swirls of tea, cherries and strawberries. This rosé is all about food and we loved it with tuna sashimi.Prices: BC 85.99 AB 85.99 ON 89.80 QC 87.50 NS 85.00 SK 83.99 MB 90.76 NL 98.48 Producer: Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin
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Veuve Clicquot Extra Brut Extra Oldtext
91PTS

Veuve Clicquot Extra Brut Extra Old NV

Champagne, FranceTasted again a year and a half after this was first released, and this is coming along very nicely in the bottle. Extra Brut Extra Old is a blend of reserve years, namely the 1988, 1996, 2006, 2008, 2009 and 2010 vintages, and the mix is 47 pinot noir, 27 percent chardonnay and 26 pinot meunier. This spent three years on lees in vats (5 percent oak), before being bottled November 2013 and spending an additional three years on the lees en tirage. This was disgorged June 2016, at a 3 g/l dosage. Think of this as classic Veuve x 10. In addition to the double aging (3x3), this is more floral perfume, more biscuity brioche, more broad shouldered, more richly spiced with candied ginger. Yellow apple, pear, toast fills in the gaps in between, all sharpened with a wallop of acidity. This is powerful, almost assertive in the mouth, and much better suited to pairing with foods (meat pastries, quail, duck) than solo sipping. A special treat for fans of the classic.Prices: BC 105.99 AB 117.99 ON 123.00 QC 0.00 Producer: Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin
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Moët & Chandon Impérial Bruttext
88PTS

Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut NV

Champagne, FranceMoët Imperial is said to be the most consumed Champers in the world. It is estimated that a bottle of this is popped every 1.3 seconds around the globe. With 20-30 percent reserves, this is a blend based on 30-40 percent pinot noir, followed by pinot meunier and a smaller portion of chardonnay, blended from more than 100 wines, matured 24 months and with 9 g/l dosage. Upfront and short ended, this is lightly toasted, with some lime pith, red apple, dough to a blunt, finish. Formulaic, to be sure, but when you consider the scale and consistency, it's admirable.Prices: BC 67.99 SK 65.74 MB 68.50 ON 67.65 QC 65.00 NB 65.00 NS 66.50 YK 69.00 NL 77.24 BC 145.00 1500 AB 64.99 ON 145.00 1500 Producer: Moet & Chandon
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Moët & Chandon Rosé Imperialtext
90PTS

Moët & Chandon Rosé Imperial NV

Champagne, FranceBright fruitiness is the Moët goal, and they have it in this 40/50 percent pinot noir (with 10 percent red wine); 30/40 pinot meunier and 10/20 percent chardonnay that contains 20/30 selected reserve wines. The colour is peachy orange, the attack soft and round with 9 g/l dosage. Three years on lees provides creamy, toasty structure that easily holds the explosive raspberry, cherry, cranberry with a citrus undercurrent. It's the freshness and acidity that seals the deal, along with flecks of brown spice. Clearly built for food you could start with grilled salmon but don’t be afraid to serve this with grilled lamb or pork.Prices: BC 77.99 QC 89.25 MB 87.88 NF 94.68 ON 82.95 NB 84.99 AB 76.99 Producer: Moet & Chandon
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Champagne Bruno Paillard Première Cuvée Extra Bruttext
92PTS

Champagne Bruno Paillard Première Cuvée Extra Brut NV

Champagne, FranceMaison Bruno Paillard is relatively new in Champagne, the house founded in 1981 by Bruno Paillard. From the beginning, their strategy has been on purchasing vineyard land. They now have 90+ parcels in 14 crus, covering the majority of their needs. My bottle of Première Cuvée Brut is sourced from 30 crus, was disgorged in April 2017, and was a blend of 25 vintages since 1985, with 50 percent reserves. This is a blend of 45/33/22 pinot noir / chardonnay / pinot meunier, 20 percent of which was barrel fermented, with the cepage spending 36 months sur lie, plus six more months in bottle, and with a dosage under 6 g/l (extra brut). Meringue, marshmallow, fine patisserie on a tight, yet cushioned palate. Finely textured with chalky dust, this feels every inch a millefuille, with layers of pastry layered with cherry vanilla cream and kissed with lemon essence, raspberry blossom and white florals. There's a bitter white cherry skin that rasps on the finish. Many layers of complexity here. In 1983, Bruno Paillard became the first to put the disgorgement date on every single bottle, not only on his prestige cuvée.Prices: BC 89.00 Producer: Champagne Bruno Paillard
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Champagne Dom Pérignon Millésimé Rosé Bruttext
95PTS

Champagne Dom Pérignon Millésimé Rosé Brut 2005

Champagne, FranceWinemaker Richard Geoffroy refers to this label as a “great wine that happens to be pink.” It’s an informed comment that makes a lot of sense. The blend is a mysterious, okay undisclosed, mix of pinot noir / chardonnay of which 25 percent is still pinot noir. As spectacular as the bottle looks, the contents are equal to the packaging, but this wine is now mature and its cherry-orange colour suggests it’s not getting any younger. Look for intense floral overtones with a strawberry, blood orange palate and notes of cranberry in the long, persistent, mineral finish. Rich enough to serve throughout a meal, or just as an aperitif to excite your guests.Prices: BC 300.00 ON 356.00 Producer: Dom Perignon
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Raphaël & Vincent Bérêche Côte Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Extra Bruttext
94PTS

Raphaël & Vincent Bérêche Côte Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut 2005

Champagne, FranceThough the name Bérêche may be a familiar one to you, seeing as they're five generations deep growing and making Champagne, you're most likely familiar with the biodynamically farmed grower family estate of Champagne Bérêche et Fils. Raphaël & Vincent Bérêche (or R&V Bérêche for short) is the name of the current generation and brothers' relatively new négociant business, producing Champagnes from purchased fruit. The have chosen to run this business under a slightly different name in order to not have to change the status of their family operation from grower (RM) to négociant (NM). This chardonnay is from mid-slope Grand Cru Avize, and the 2005 vintage. It went into bottle in 2006 and remained there until its disgorging in December 2016 (!!), dosed with 4 g/l. Exceptional finesse and complexity, with layers of wet and dry chalk, lemon peel, green apple, fresh filberts, crispy meringue on a finely textured palate. A wave of savoury salts kissed with brown butter rides throughout, providing an alluring interest. There's a natural restraint, yet palpable intensity in this graceful, characterful wine, one that stood out amongst the rest. 4000 bottles produced.Prices: BC 134.99 Producer: Champagne Bérèche et Fils
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Champagne Nicolas Maillart Brut Platinetext
91PTS

Champagne Nicolas Maillart Brut Platine NV

Champagne, FranceThis intense negoc champagne is an 78/16/8 pinot noir/chardonnay/meunier cuvee sourced entirely from grand and premiers crus in the Montagne de Reims, and based (35 percent) on the 2014 vintage. Traditionally, the whole is plumped with 30-40 percent barrel aged reserve wines, spends a period rounding three years on the lees, and finishes off with 6 g/l dosage. My bottle was disgorged in January 2018. In contrast to type, this is a energetic and tighter wine, with skippy lemon driving the toasted brioche, red apple, red liquorice kissed palate. Acidity is crunchy, welcoming both solo sipping and partnering with prawns through pork.Prices: BC 67.99 Producer: Champagne Nicolas Maillart
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Champagne Pierre Peters Cuvée de Reserve Blanc de Blancs Brut Grand Crutext
93PTS

Champagne Pierre Peters Cuvée de Reserve Blanc de Blancs Brut Grand Cru NV

Champagne, FranceThe Pierre Peters Estate, situated in the heart of the Cote des Blancs in the village of Le Mesnil sur Oger, has been producing Grand Cru Champagne since 1919. Rudolphe Peters is currently in charge of the estate. The vines for this wine are nearing 30 years, sourced from mainly from Le Mesnil sur Oger (70 percent), and with supplementing fruit from Oger, Cramant and Avize. 75 percent go through MLF, and all are aged in a series of steel, wood, and concrete, which is mirrored with the reserve wines (40 percent), though those have entered a solera cuvée more than 20 vintages deep. After two years aging in the bottle this was disgorged with an dosage under 7 g/l. As per the Pierre Peters style, this is pure finesse and elegance. The chiseled palate is greyhound sleek, with chalk, lemon, green apple skipping along the lees-lined palate, buoyed by acidity to a lingering, vanilla meringue, lemon pith finish. They always pack so much into so little; impressive.Prices: BC 74.99 Producer: Champagne Pierre Peters
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Laurent Perrier La Cuvée Brut LPtext
91PTS

Laurent Perrier La Cuvée Brut LP NV

Champagne, FranceLa Cuvée is a shiny and new revamped version of Brut NV, updated thanks to the house's acquisition of very good chardonnay vineyards back in 2004. Now that those wines have woven into the system, LP have revised their flagship to be chardonnay dominant. The LP La Cuvée is 55 percent chardonnay, 35 pinot noir, and 10 pinot meunier, from 110 growers. This is based on the 2012 vintage, with 30 percent reserve, and with four years on the lees. They've also lowered the dosage from 12.5 to 9 g/l, a hefty and welcome plummet. White florals, lemon biscuit, vanilla wafer and lightly toasted almond / hazelnut on a medium-bodied, finessed palate. There's a tight line of potent lemon peel that lingers on the finish. Acidity is lifted and the palate is bright, much more effortless and finessed than the NV of past. A lovely change, and reflection of the house.Prices: BC 60.99 QC 58.00 Producer: Champagne Laurent-Perrier
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Champagne Laurent Perrier Cuvée Rosé Bruttext
93PTS

Champagne Laurent Perrier Cuvée Rosé Brut NV

Champagne, FranceThe LP La Cuvée Rosé is a highly sought after pink fizz and one of the few still made using the saignée method. It was first released in 1968 and is made with pinot noir picked from 10 different crus in Montagne de Reims. Three days of skin contact set the colour and tannin required to sustain 60 months en tirage. In the end it’s the attractive cherry, raspberry, citrus that appeals. Fresh, and as bright as it is, there’s enough structure and acidity to take on a variety of menu items. Think wild salmon lox or grilled turkey. I often cellar this wine three to five years for even better results.Prices: BC 95.99 BC 229.99 1500 QC 99.75 PEI 107.00 ON 99.99 Producer: Champagne Laurent-Perrier
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Louis Roederer Brut Vintage Champagnetext
92PTS

Louis Roederer Brut Vintage Champagne 2007

Champagne, FranceRoederer is an amazing accomplishment: progressive, classic, innovative and traditional, with very high quality on a very large scale. This is the largest independent, family-owned and managed house (founded in 1776), managing more than 235ha of prime vineyards which supply 75 percent of its needs. Of that, more than two-thirds are Grand Cru fruit. Their vintage wines are solely from their estate properties. Though 2007 was not the greatest vintage, Roederer has produced one of the best wines of the year. Such a lovely nod to the Roederer style: elegant, unhurried, complexed, and proper. The 2007 blends 70/30 pinot noir/ chardonnay, 30 percent of which is aged in wood sans MLF. After blending and bottling, this spends four years in the cellar. Toasted hazelnuts, pear brioche, nougat, on a deeply cushioned pillow. Lemon / orange laced acidity lifts the heft, unhurriedly, to a lingering lemony finish. Quite proper, and fitting for a special occasion now, or time in the cellar for later.Prices: BC 97.99 Producer: Champagne Louis Roederer
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Louis Roederer Brut Premier Champagnetext
92PTS

Louis Roederer Brut Premier Champagne NV

Champagne, FranceRoederer is an amazing accomplishment: progressive, classic, innovative and traditional, with very high quality on a very large scale. This is the largest independent, family-owned and managed house (founded in 1776), managing more than 235ha of prime vineyards which supply 75 percent of its needs. Of that, more than two-thirds are Grand Cru fruit. Their vintage wines are from their estate properties, and this flagship Brut Premier NV (also, their entry level) is also primarily estate fruit. This is a 35/38/28 mix of pinot noir, chardonnay and pinot meunier, incorporating 25 percent reserve wines dating back to 2006. Said reserve wines rest in oak casks for 2-8 years before incorporation into the blends, one of the keys to the house style. This spends three years on the lees, and undergoes 40 percent MLF (but never MLF for Chardonnay). You can use the code on the back of the label to look up the dates on your particular bottle. Mine was based on 2013, bottled in 2014, and disgorged in 2017. Elegant, as ever, with toasted hazelnuts, brioche, Meyer lemon pith, salted lemon peel and an upright backbone of acidity that runs the long length of the palate. This lingers with an alluring shimmer, welcoming glass after glass, solo or with food. Legendary NV for a reason.Prices: BC 72.99 MB 70.00 ON 66.95 QC 70.00 NF 79.20 Producer: Champagne Louis Roederer
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Champagne Gardet Millesime Extra Bruttext
88PTS

Champagne Gardet Millesime Extra Brut 2012

Champagne, FranceGardet has been an active negociant in Champagne since 1895, and this is their new vintage release. It's 2/3 pinot noir, and 1/3 chardonnay, with almost four years on the lees and with an extra brut dosage of 4g/l. Bright, tight brioche, light pear, yellow and red apple, with crunchy Asian pear acidity and fine apple / ginger spices and men's musk. A welcome extra brut offering.Prices: BC 75.95 Producer: Champagne Gardet
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Champagne Gardet Brut Traditiontext
89PTS

Champagne Gardet Brut Tradition NV

Champagne, FranceGardet has been an active negoc in Champagne since 1895, and this is their mainstay wine. The predominant red grapes (90 percent equally split between pinots noir and meunier) are expressed through raspberry, strawberry brioche, toasty spice on a creamy, generously smooth, medium bodied palate. A puff of raspberry perfume lingers on the finely spiced finish. This spends 24-36 months on the lees, and has a dosage of 8 g/l.Prices: BC 51.99 Producer: Champagne Gardet
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Taittinger Collectiontext
91PTS

Taittinger Collection 2008

Champagne, FranceA portion of Taittinger's vintage wines fall under the limited edition Collection Series, with each label featuring the work of an international artist. For the 2008, the 14th edition of the Collection Series, Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado is highlighted, as is his interpretation of this special wine. Salgado was the first photographer selected for the commission. 2008 is equal parts pinot noir and chardonnay, 70 percent of which is grand cru and the remainder premier cru. It is bottled with 8 g/l dosage. Powerful and complexed, with nougat, marzipan, dried peach and deep and fine spicing that fill the expansive palate. This finishes with a slight vanilla / lemon curd note, which lingers long. Drinking beautifully now.Prices: BC 400.00 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Rosétext
94PTS

Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Rosé 2006

Champagne, FranceComtes Rosé is made from Grand Cru grapes and produced only in exceptional years. 70 percent pinot noir is accented with chardonnay, with 12 percent Bouzy pinot noir blended in as still red wine. Once in bottle, the whole spends spent ten years on the lees, and my bottle was disgorged in 2016. Earthy, fresh and dried mushroom infiltrates the potent cherry, cranberry and raspberry that fill the palate, one infused with fine black tea and textured with smoked stones. Orange peel lingers on the finish. This has intensity and bravado, while still holding its elegance. Lovely drinking now, but will cellar smartly.Prices: QC 276.25 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancstext
96PTS

Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs 2006

Champagne, FranceOne of the top wines of the year, again, and still, and same (current) vintage we've been tasting since 2013 - though I've seen the 2007 released in the UK... What a treat to track the evolution of the '06 Comtes, one of my favourite in recent history. Pristine and stunningly so, this graceful wine is showing quite a bit of power in this bottle, with chalky potency, grippy sides, energy and drive. Lovely lemony note and uncharacteristic energy in my bottle, disgorged in late 2017. Comtes is only produced in exceptional years, and spends a minimum of eight years on lees (this bottle was ten). The 2006 was sourced from Chouilly, Cramant, Avize, Le Mesnil, and Le Mesnil sur Oger, though more than half came from Avize and Le Mesnil. Five percent of the Chouilly spent time in 225 Burgundy barrels for added emphasis. This bottle was less gossamer and more intense than normal, though all 2016 will make for brilliant cellaring wines. Iconic.Prices: AB 245.00 QC 459.25 1500 NS 200.00 BC 256.00 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Taittinger Nocturne Sectext
89PTS

Taittinger Nocturne Sec NV

Champagne, FranceNocturne uses the same base as Taitt's NV, but sees a higher dosage (17.5 g/l) and one additional year on the lees. The additional bottle development is a good partner with the higher dosage. That said, this is on the very light end of the Sec spectrum. Punchy, potent in the mouth with some pear kissed sweetness and sweet toasted ginger spices on the finish. The name suggests what time to drink this wine; it is nightclub ready, and designed for when you may want to reduce the acidity of the wine and up the smashability factor. Instead of pairing with nightclubs, you can also partner this with a fine tuna belly sashimi.Prices: BC 80.00 QC 72.00 ON 65.95 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Taittinger Prélude Grands Crustext
92PTS

Taittinger Prélude Grands Crus NV

Champagne, FranceThis richer, riper, doughier Taittinger is equal parts Grand Cru pinot noir (Montagne de Reims) and Grand Cru chardonnay (Côte des Blancs), aged for five+ years on the lees, and with a 9 g/l dosage. This utilizes 2 or 3 villages each for the GC pinot (Ambonnay, Maiy with northern exposure, and Verzenay) and chard (Avize and Le Mesnil and some parts of Chouilly). Powerful, with ample minerality, light smoked stone, kisses of flint and light toasty notes, lingering with lemon. This is powerful, but streamlined, with a lovely streak of acidity to match heft. Regal. My bottle was disgorged in December 2017, and this is from the 2012 vintage.Prices: BC 100.00 QC 79.50 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Taittinger Prestige Rosétext
90PTS

Taittinger Prestige Rosé NV

Champagne, FranceTaittinger Rosé is a gently deeper pink hue, afforded by the 15 percent still pinot noir in the blend. The cuvée is 50/35/15 pinot noir, chardonnay, and pinot meunier from nearly 45 crus, including some reserve wines. Pretty florals, raspberry wrap around a pure strawberry core, one that runs the palate with a fine texture and brisk crunchy acidity. Nine g/l dosage, which is common across the house. Lovely freshness here, with evident pinot character, which is welcome. My bottle was based on the 2014 vintage, which is encoded in laser on the base of the bottle.Prices: QC 81.50 NS 97.00 BC 110.00 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Taittinger Brut Reservetext
91PTS

Taittinger Brut Reserve NV

Champagne, FranceTaitt NV is one of those instantly recognizable champagnes for me. Their classic, chardonnay driven house style is drawn from nearly 40 crus in the Marne, Sézanne and Aube and with minimum three years on the lees before cellaring in Reims. Full MLF, with a dosage is 9 g/l. In the NV blend the mix is approximately 40 percent chardonnay 45 pinot noir and rest meunier. In every bottle nearly 50 percent of grapes are from owned vineyards. Juicy, bright, lemon-led, with a chalky texture and fresh, brisk rinse of acidity on the finish. This bottle was based on 2014; you can see the disgorgement date engraved in laser on the base of the bottle. There are 5M of this cuvee produced annually. Alexandre Ponnavoy is Taittinger's new winemaker as of spring 2018, and I'm looking forward to his handling of this iconic house.Prices: BC 63.99 QC 59.75 MB 69.41 ON 63.00 NF 58.00 SK 69.57 NS 80.00 YK 90.00 AB 65.99 Producer: Champagne Taittinger
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Champagne Baron-Fuenté Grande Réserve Bruttext
88PTS

Champagne Baron-Fuenté Grande Réserve Brut NV

Champagne, FranceThe Baron family has owned and cultivated vineyards in Charly sur Marne since the 17th century. When Gabriel Baron married Dolores Fuenté in 1967, they named the negoc house Baron-Fuenté. Today they own 35 ha of vineyards in the Marne, and purchase the same amount of fruit sur pied (they pick the grapes, not just manage the vin clairs or bottled wine). Fermented cool in stainless and with full MLF, this uses approximately 40 percent reserve wines, and spent three years on the lees prior to disgorgement at 9 g/l. This is a rarer seen meunier-led wine (60 percent), with 30 percent chardonnay and 10 percent pinot noir. Yellow apples, ripe pear, white flowers, light honey fill the doughy, richer frame, one with fine fruity spices and a hearty shake of acidity to brighten. Tidy entry-level champers.Prices: BC 55.00 Producer: Baron-Fuenté
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H. Billiot Fils Brut Grand Cru Brut Réserve Champagnetext
90PTS

H. Billiot Fils Brut Grand Cru Brut Réserve Champagne NV

Champagne, FranceThis small family house, active since the early 20th century, owns five, well-located, mid-slope Grand Cru hectares in Ambonnay. Forth gen Laetitia Billiot oversees the estate and winemaking, and has been a leading force in Champagne for younger, woman winemakers. The Reserve is a blend of 75 percent pinot noir and 25 percent chardonnay with 36 months on the lees. Wines are fermented in stainless with no MLF, are unfined and unfiltered, and disgorged to order. May bottle wine was disgorged on 31 Oct 2017, with a dosage of 11 g/l/, and was based (75 percent) on the 2014 vintage. This creamy, ample wine opens with apricot biscuit, dough and toasted cereals, with red fruits from apples through raspberries reflecting the predominance of Grand Cru pinots. Acidity is brisk and well placed, sweeping along the heft with an easy flow to a vanillin imbued finish. I always find Billiot wines rustic around the edges, though this release is showing plump elegance. A generous wine best enjoyed with sizeable scallops.Prices: BC 65.00 Producer: Champagne H. Billiot Fils
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Champagne Delamotte Bruttext
91PTS

Champagne Delamotte Brut NV

Champagne, FranceChampagne Delamotte was one of only five Champagne houses in the mid 1700's, and remains located in the heart of the Côte des Blancs in Le Mesnil- sur-Oger. Delamotte is the sister house and contiguous to the regaled Champagne Salon, with which it shares the same viticultural, winemaking and management crew. Delamotte Brut is a blend of approximately 55 percent chardonnay, 35 percent pinot noir from south-facing slopes on the Montagne de Reims, and 10 percent meunier from the Valle de la Marne. The whole spends 36 months on the lees, and is dosed with 7 g/l. Tight, finessed lemon, chalk, on a lemon brioche palate, one kissed lightly with the freshest, salted hazelnuts and nervy with energetic acidity that nips at the sides and hums on the lingering finish. Quite precise and taut, without feeling any constraints, this is a lovely, brisk, detailed NV.Prices: BC 63.00 Producer: Champagne Delamotte
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Champagne Drappier Carte d'Or Bruttext
90PTS

Champagne Drappier Carte d'Or Brut NV

Champagne, FranceThe Drappier family vineyard holdings are remarkably large, covering 100 hectares. It's taken the negoc family a long time to amass such an impressive holding in Champagne, where they're been actively buying vineyards since 1808. Drappier brought pinot noir to the Aube in 1930s. Vineyards are primarily located around Urville, in the heart of the Côte des Bar, where pinot noir is king and soils are limestone-centric. The Carte d'Or is their trademark wine, a cool-fermented blend of 75 pinot noir, 15 chardonnay and 10 pinot meunier, with 40 percent reserve wines, and 5 percent of the blend matured in oak for one year. Wines go through full MLF, and have very little sulphur added. The disgorgement date is etched on the back of each bottle; mine was disgorged in May 2018. You can feel the nimble vibrancy of the soils here, basing the light cherry, wild raspberry, plum, apple that fills the shouldered, medium body, all imbued with lovely perfumed florals and light toast. Highly suited to pairing with roast squash / partridge / salmon.Prices: BC 59.99 ON 55.00 QC 50.50 Producer: Champagne Drappier
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Champagne Pierre Paillard Les Parcelles Bouzy Grand Cru Extra Brut XIIItext
93PTS

Champagne Pierre Paillard Les Parcelles Bouzy Grand Cru Extra Brut XIII NV

Champagne, FranceLes Parcelles is sourced entirely from Bouzy, and from 22 plots of the Paillard family's sustainably-farmed vines, now averaging 25 years. As noted by the XIII on the label, this is based on the 2013 vintage (80%) along with 201 (14%) and 2004 (6%). A blend of 70 percent pinot noir and 30 percent chardonnay (the latter an anomaly in red-wine-centric Bouzy), this spent four years on the lees. Chisled lemon, nougat and meringue leads this tight, energetic and extra brut (2 g/l dosage) Champagne. The palate pulses with energy, drawing green apple, cream, spice along a creamy, lighter palate and through a very lengthy finish. The chalk bedrock is evident through the driving hum of minerality, and lingering chalk finish.Prices: BC 63.00 Producer: Champagne Pierre Paillard
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08 December 2018

Blomidon Brut Réservetext
92PTS

Blomidon Brut Réserve 2011

Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia, CanadaThis new release is from estate grown chardonnay, with no MLF, and with 60 months on the lees before degorgement. Eventually this will evolve into the house's NV, and become their flagship wine of maritime terroir. Brilliant move. Slightly deeper in hue, this is showing the entrance of autolysis, with layers of orange rind, marmalade, chalk, light toast and salt-crusted stones. Though this has ample citrus acidity, it feels quite expansive and cushioned across the palate, thanks to the extended time on lees. The length continues to vibrato chalky, saline citrus. Very impressive.Prices: NS 45.00 Producer: Blomidon Estate Winery
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Benjamin Bridge Brut Reserve Methode Classiquetext
93PTS

Benjamin Bridge Brut Reserve Methode Classique 2012

Gaspereau Valley, Nova Scotia, CanadaThe Brut Reserve is only released in exceptional years when the winery deems the fruit worthy of the program. Reserve wines come from the top barrel selections and oldest estate plantings. It has only happened before in 2004, 2008, 2012, and the unreleased 2016. This year blended 65 Chardonnay, 25 Pinot Noir, 10 Pinot Meunier, with a requisite dosage of 12 g/l and five years on the lees. This wine was the very last to be assembled by Champagne oenologist Raphaël Brisbois before his death just a few weeks after blending this wine. It's an opus tribute. If you're familiar with the Brut (2013 is new release), think of this as similar but with the volume cranked up. Pulsing with energy, this streams lemon, oyster shell, green apple along a chalky palate. Tannins are ringed with white grapefruit pith and the finish lingers long with a marine rinse, anise kiss, and that chalky tug. Layers of complexity even now in youth, this will only build with time in the bottle. Thrilled to taste Nova Scotia in this bottle.Prices: NS 75.00 Producer: Benjamin Bridge
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Benjamin Bridge Brut Méthode Classiquetext
92PTS

Benjamin Bridge Brut Méthode Classique 2013

Gaspereau Valley, Nova Scotia, CanadaThe 2013 Brut, newly released, is a blend of 71 chardonnay and 29 pinot noir, spent four years on the lees, and was disgorged in June 2018 with a dosage of 8 g/l. Unlike the 2012, this removes meunier and ups the chardy quotient. White florals with kisses of young violets, white cherry, pithy white grapefruit, green apple rides an upright brisk palate. There's a hum of acidity that lends a vibrato to this light / medium bodied wine, one that is nimble in the mouth at 11.5 degrees, but feels generously cushioned on the palate. The finish grips with a chalky drying rasp and lime pith that lingers on the palate and invites another glass. Very impressive.Prices: ON 50.00 NS 44.50 AB 50.00 Producer: Benjamin Bridge
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Lightfoot and Wolfville Blanc de Blancs Brut Naturetext
92PTS

Lightfoot and Wolfville Blanc de Blancs Brut Nature 2012

Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia, CanadaA hugely impressive inaugural release from one of Canada's most exciting wineries, this is estate chardonnay from Annapolis Valley. Fermented (70 percent MLF) in neutral French oak, this then spent five years on the lees before being disgorged with no dosage in January 2018. Very precise and focused, with fine chalky textural notes, light smoked stone, alluring saline, lemon pith / peel and lemon verbena. This linear wine has energy that hums along a lengthy finish and a lightness of being which belies expectations. Feels entirely maritime Nova Scotian, and will soon be an icon winery for Annapolis.Prices: NS 65.00 Producer: Lightfoot and Wolfville
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Hinterland Les Etoilestext
92PTS

Hinterland Les Etoiles 2013

Prince Edward County, Ontario, CanadaFrom one of Canada's leading sparkling houses, the 2013 Les Etoiles is one of my favourite wines they produce. This year's was a 60/40 chardonnay/pinot noir blend, with 4.5 g/l RS to balance off the riveting acidity. Tight and nimble, with verbena, crystalline orange and lemon and a candied, salted ginger snap lingering on the humming finish. Quite textural, and finessed; this is building weight and gravitas with age, and while drinking beautifully now, will reward even further with time in cellar.Prices: ON 40.00 Producer: Hinterland
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Hidden Bench Blanc de Blancstext
91PTS

Hidden Bench Blanc de Blancs 2013

Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaWow. This was the winery's inaugural blanc de blancs, and it's fantastic. Organically certified and estate grown chardonnay from the Locust Lane and Felseck vineyards were whole cluster pressed, fermented in neutral oak with seven months on the lees and then spends four years on lees in bottle prior to a zero dosage and release. Tight, racy form, with yellow, red, green apple, an alluring lick of anise, lightly toasted almonds and lemon pithiness on the finish. Great persistence and sleek form. I can't wait to see where this project is going to go in future.Prices: ON 48.00 Producer: Hidden Bench Vineyards & Winery
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Meiomi Sparkling Winetext
87PTS

Meiomi Sparkling Wine NV

North Coast Region, California, United StatesExpect a pleasant sweet floral nose flecked with apples and yeasty lees. The attack is soft and round with ripe pears, honey and citrus. There’s no denying the sweetness at 16 grams of residual sugar but this wine is well made, and should have wide appeal, especially for the Meiomi crowd who seem to prefer the sweet side of wines. Try this with spicy appetizers, pepper cheese or a for dessert with fresh mixed berry tart. The blend is 60/40 chardonnay and pinot noir.Prices: US 24.00 Producer: Meiomi Wines
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Dopff & Irion Blanc de Blancs Bruttext
88PTS

Dopff & Irion Blanc de Blancs Brut NV

Alsace, FranceBright lemon, chalky texture on this zero dosage pinot blanc / auxerrois fizz, from the biodynamically farmed Dopff & Irion. Now farmed by giant co-cp Pfaffenheim, this streams lemon balm, verbena, pear skin, green apple pith across the bright, tight palate. Amazing value at 14.50 in the UKPrices: UK 14.50 Producer: Dopff & Irion
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Plumpton Brut Rosétext
88PTS

Plumpton Brut Rosé NV

EnglandThis South Down, East Sussex estate grown pinot noir is produced by students studying wine production at Plumpton College. I'd say studies are going very well. Ripe raspberry, red apple, cherry, is gritted with giant spices and riffing pink grapefruit-lined English acidity, gripped with red apple skin texture. Dosage is ample, and necessary to offset the sharp acidity. Lovely balance between generous fruit and tightrope acid. Tasted in the UKPrices: Producer: Plumpton
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Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs Bruttext
91PTS

Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs Brut 2015

North Coast Region, California, United StatesAlways one of America's top sparkling wines, and the 2015 is on par. A blend of 54 percent Napa and 46 percent Sonoma fruit, 18 percent of which fermented in barrel, and with more than two years on lees. This is lemon crisp, with an ample blanket of toast, dough bedding the medium bodied palate, with crispy citrus buffering around the edges. Acidity is high through the vibrating finish. The Blanc de Blancs was the first wine Schramsberg produced in 1965 and was America’s first commercially produced Chardonnay-based brut sparkling wine. It gained international recognition in 1972 when President Nixon served the wine at the historic "Toast to Peace" in Beijing, China.Prices: ON 45.00 BC 40.00 Producer: Schramsberg
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Gusbourne Blanc de Blancstext
92PTS

Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs 2013

EnglandThere are rare few places where sparkling wines can meet the quality of Champagne. England is one. And Gusbourne is one of her top traditional method producers. Riveting lemon-laced and filigreed acidity lifts the chalky, stony, green apple and meringue base. Acidity skips this sleek wine along a vibrating palate to a lingering lemon pith finish. A small proportion of this was aged in oak barrels, went through full MLF, and spent 36 months on the lees before bottling. Dosage is 9 g/l, and barely felt at all. Precise, lengthy, memorable, and impressive.Prices: BC 90.00 Producer: Gusbourne
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Philippe Michel Crémant du Jura Bruttext
89PTS

Philippe Michel Crémant du Jura Brut NV

Jurançon, Sud-Ouest, FranceCrisp, chalky and bright, with a swath of green apples, vibrato of acidity, zippy lemon zest, and a thin layer of autolytic lees on the medium body, this traditional method sparkler could only be chardonnay. It's not from Burgundy, or Champagne, however, which is a natural selection. This is from Jura, and an excellent representation of the high quality fizz coming from there (at an excellent price). The finish lingers with wet chalk and mouthwatering acidity. Moreish.Prices: BC 26.49 Producer: Philippe Michel
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Acquesitext
88PTS

Acquesi NV

Piedmont, ItalyThis beautiful etched floral bottle hints at the delicate florality inside, with all the pretty peaches, pear blossoms, orange and lush melon fruit. There's a cold cream lavender base of this off dry and lifted fizz. At a cloud-like seven degrees, this is ideal for brunches or light fruit desserts.Prices: BC 19.99 Producer: Acqui Terme
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Noble Ridge The One Sparklingtext
89PTS

Noble Ridge The One Sparkling 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2014 grabbed our attention and the 2015 is similarly solid. The Okanagan Falls bubble is a 70/30 mix of chardonnay and pinot noir that opens with a whiff of lees and smoke before a salty, citrus, green apple, stony profile takes over. The acid is showy and the fizz well managed. It lacks that creamy palate finish but I’m sure with age and/or a few more vintages this will come. It’s all pressed whole cluster and aged 28 months on the lees, and at only 2.0 g/l RS, significantly drier than the 2014. This could use two more years in the bottle to really settle into its final form.Prices: BC 47.90 Producer: Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery
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Jackson-Triggs Entourage Grand Reserve Sparkling Sauvignon Blanctext
88PTS

Jackson-Triggs Entourage Grand Reserve Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc 2015

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaA sauvignon blanc sparkling wine makes a rare appearance in our market, and it's from the Niagara Peninsula. The attack is a touch foamy but otherwise this brut is Methode Classique bottle-fermented and aged for in oak for a few months before spending extended time ageing on its lees. The aromas are fresh with herbal, aromatic, citrus biscuit and pink grapefruit notes, and solid pineapple, apple flavours that finish clean. Made for sushi rolls, oysters or seafood appetizers, or even a favourite pâté.Prices: BC 28.99 ON 24.29 Producer: Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Estate
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Blue Mountain Brut Rosé R.D. Méthode Traditionelletext
89PTS

Blue Mountain Brut Rosé R.D. Méthode Traditionelle 2014

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe rush to rosé has invaded the sparkling wine market but fortunately this wine remains true to its origins. The mix is 68/32 pinot noir/chardonnay. It’s whole cluster pressed and fermented in stainless steel. The ageing sur lie lasts about 30 months prior to disgorgement, in this case, August 2016, and then left another year in bottle. The residual sugar at 10 grams per litre will appeal to those who prefer their rosé round and soft. Expect an off-dry palate featuring strawberries and cherries with a twist of rhubarb. There is plenty of acidity to offset the RS and keep this fresh and on track. It has the structure to work with bigger dishes like duck, pork, or a favourited root vegetable dish. At this time of the year it also shows well alongside an oven-roasted turkey.Prices: BC 32.90 AB 39.95 Producer: Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars
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Blue Mountain Reserve Brut R.D. Méthode Traditionelletext
91PTS

Blue Mountain Reserve Brut R.D. Méthode Traditionelle 2010

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe '10 RD is an equal mix of estate grown pinot noir and chardonnay. The wine went to glass in the spring of 2011 and remained there some 6.6 years on its lees until it was disgorged in August 2017. The finished brut spent another year in bottle prior to this release. This is as complex as it gets at Blue Mountain, and it’s not too heavy handed. The attack is desert dry with a nutty lees character on the nose and palate. The acidity dances down the side of your mouth framing the wine while the lemon, apple, dried apricot and tangerine flavours persist through the finish. This is fun to drink now but you could easily hold this through 2020. That's a tribute to the winemaking and the fruit available to make this wine.Prices: BC 39.90 AB 49.95 Producer: Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars
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Blue Mountain Blanc de Blancs R.D. Méthode Traditionelletext
91PTS

Blue Mountain Blanc de Blancs R.D. Méthode Traditionelle 2010

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis has become my Blue Mountain favourite and it begins with finesse and styling of this eminently drinkable 12.5 percent fizz. Not sure why we are just seeing this wine this fall, but no matter, it's delicious all the same. It was recently disgorged (RD) in August 2016 and then spent another year in bottle before release. Our sample has almost 30 months under its belt in the bottle, post its disgorgement. I love the freshness of the subtle, leesy, autolytic notes of extended lees ageing on the nose, along with bits of toast, salt and seawater before the citrus, red apple nervous fruit fill your palate and linger for ever on the palate. So pure. This is special. Serve with delicately prepared dishes.Prices: BC 39.90 AB 49.95 Producer: Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars
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Summerhill Pyramid Winery Cipes Bruttext
88PTS

Summerhill Pyramid Winery Cipes Brut NV

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaStones, yellow apple, with riffing green apple acidity wrapped around a lovely applesauce core. Nice generosity but still tight and riveting with freshness. This organic riesling, chardonnay, pinot blanc traditional method sparklier is a BC classic, first released in 1992. It spends nine months on the lees and is dosed with 12.8 g/l RS, making it accessible and welcoming. Plus, pyramid power!Prices: BC 28.00 Producer: Summerhill Pyramid Winery
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Averill Creek Charme de L'iletext
90PTS

Averill Creek Charme de L'ile NV

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaPinot gris and pinot noir are branded under the Charme de L'ile name, signifying Charmat method fizz, from Island grapes. This is a shining example of the high potential for fizz on the islands. Brisk, fresh, racy and severely tight - laced with lemon and orange pith texturing the sides. The body is light and the flow is lively. Best Charme de L'ile I've tasted yet; tastes of the island.Prices: BC 18.00 Producer: Averill Creek Vineyard
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Unsworth Vineyards Charme De L'ile Rosétext
84PTS

Unsworth Vineyards Charme De L'ile Rosé NV

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaOur first look at this eye of the partridge dyed, island sparkler made in the prosecco way, opening with an earthy rhubarb and red fruit nose with a whiff of oxidation. The attack is a touch foamy with more oxidative notes mixed with cherry berry, lees and earth. Drink now. The grapes are grown on clay over gravel in the cool climate Cowichan Valley. Not quite on pointe.Prices: BC 21.65 Producer: Unsworth Vineyards
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Unsworth Vineyards Charme De L'iletext
88PTS

Unsworth Vineyards Charme De L'ile NV

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaThe Charme de L’ile from Unsworth is on pointe with a fresh, clean, fruity nose. The blend is 43 pinot noir, 42 pinot gris and 15 sauvignette, the latter bringing vibrancy to this delicious sparkler. Packaged under the Vancouver Island-shared Charme de L'ile branding, it is crisp, with taut, citrus, wet stone aromas and similarly tight, green apple, lees flavours, with modest size mousse. Well done with food-friendly acidity to take on any bites with a bit of fat.Prices: BC 21.65 Producer: Unsworth Vineyards
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Bench 1775 Brut Rosétext
88PTS

Bench 1775 Brut Rosé NV

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe newest Brut Rosé has moved to a NV wine, but remains a blend of Naramata Bench young chardonnay and pinot noir vines. Toast, smoked red fruit, candied raspberry is lively in the mouth, juicy with acidity, and closes with a sharp bitter cherry bite. Best with smoked salmon canapés, lox-livened brunches or earthy patés.Prices: BC 22.00 Producer: Bench 1775 Winery
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Blue Grouse Paula Methode Traditionaltext
88PTS

Blue Grouse Paula Methode Traditional 2014

British Columbia, CanadaThis is a BC designated sparkler with a 42.4/42.5/10/5 mix of muller-thurgau, ortega, pinot auxerrois and riesling (the latter two Okanagan-based) which helps explain the fresh lemon, green apple and a whiff of almonds. The attack is clean and vibrant with a refined mousse and an undercore of bright acidity. This is a food sparkler and I can’t think of a better start then with smoked salmon, goat cheese or fresh shucked oysters. Promising start; next up more complexity.Prices: BC 18.00 Producer: Blue Grouse Estate Winery
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Evolve Pink Effervescencetext
86PTS

Evolve Pink Effervescence NV

CanadaThe latest version of Evolve's pink frizzante (they have a blanc gew-only blend this year as well) blends pinot blanc, merlot and chardonnay into a slightly soft, off-dry fizz, full of pink florals, strawberry jam, candied peach and sharpened with a frame of raspberry leather and pink grapefruit. Easy, fun, festive, and balanced for brunch, now.Prices: BC 19.99 Producer: Evolve Cellars
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Evolve Frizzantetext
87PTS

Evolve Frizzante 2017

British Columbia, CanadaThis year's white frizzante (there is a pink version as well) is entirely gewürztraminer for the first time; a welcome change. Lively and fun, with apricot blossoms, candied lime and peach on a bright, just off-dry palate. For drinking now, with friends and fêtes. Nicely handled.Prices: Producer: Evolve Cellars
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Dr. Loosen Sparkling Rieslingtext
87PTS

Dr. Loosen Sparkling Riesling NV

GermanyAmply frothy, amply sweet sums up this charmat method riesling from German's famous Loosen Bros. Though this is labelled Sec (dry) it rides a wave of residual sugar that carries candied peach, pear, candy necklace, pink grapefruit and perfumed melon to a snappy finish. Acidity is shining, which is welcome. Needs be chilled well, and might find its best use in cocktails.Prices: BC 19.00 Producer: Weingut Dr. Loosen
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Maeli Dilátext
86PTS

Maeli Dilá 2014

Veneto, ItalyDilà means rising above challenges. This wine is the first moscato giallo (yellow muscat) made in the medoto classico (traditional method), spending 13 months on the lees prior to release. Organically-farmed, and naturally-bent, with no additions or deletions, the grapes come from the high altitude volcanic Luvigliano Hills, in Padua, within the DOC of Colli Eugani (though sparkling wines are not permitted use of the DOC). Ample meadow herbs, toasted pine nuts, yellow fruits and citrus, this reminds me of a witbier in bitterness and body (very fine mousse), but carries the brightness of lemon, and the perfumed quince of moscato. Light in body and persistent in flavour, this is a lovely, delicate pour as an aperitif. Best well chilled.Prices: ON 79.95 Producer: Maeli
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8th Generation Vineyard Confidence Petite Frizzantetext
86PTS

8th Generation Vineyard Confidence Petite Frizzante 2017

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSo cute! Frosted glass, etched, pink, 375ml, and this perfectly picnic and pocket-sized pour is around $15. This frizzante pink is mostly pinot noir, with a 10 percent tip of pinot gris, and sourced from Naramata, Summerland and Okanagan Falls. CO2 from fermentation is trapped and injected back into the wine to create the big froth and creamy mousse. Sweet strawberry jam, cherry cordial, pink grapefruit pops on a well-chilled palate, finishing snappy with rose petals lingering. Best with spicy bites, well chilled.Prices: BC 13.99 375 Producer: 8th Generation Vineyard
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Bella Sparkling Blanc de Blancs Oliver East Side Reservetext
89PTS

Bella Sparkling Blanc de Blancs Oliver East Side Reserve 2014

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaPart of Jay Drysdale's Reserves programming (as noted by the black label). We're tasting this four years along from first view, now with 46 months on the lees, providing a totally different view of Cerqueira Vineyard and this Oliver East Side. The 2014 is round and softer on the palate, with yellow apple and pear, housed with a light, tight frame, holding the acid well. There's an earthy, savoury textural component throughout this wine, not noted in the 2013 Reserve. This was the first time Jay worked with less sulphur / no inputs.Prices: BC 24.00 BC 15.00 375 Producer: Bella Wines
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Bella Sparkling Blanc de Blancs Oliver East Side Reservetext
91PTS

Bella Sparkling Blanc de Blancs Oliver East Side Reserve 2013

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaPart of Jay Drysdale's Reserves programming (as noted by the black label). We're tasting this four years along from first view, now with 58 months on the lees, and obviously a very different, more mature version of Oliver East Side. Chalky, fine lemon, lees wrap around a searing, sharp tight lemony core. Licks of butterscotch on the nose lead, and bitter lemon notes linger in the back end. This was from Cerqueira Vineyard, along Oliver's Black Sage Bench.Prices: BC 65.00 Producer: Bella Wines
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Bella Wines Reserve Brut Nature Oliver Eastside Chardonnaytext
92PTS

Bella Wines Reserve Brut Nature Oliver Eastside Chardonnay 2012

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaNow with 70 months on lees. Singularly sourced from Oliver's calcium carbonate-laced Cerqueira Vineyard, this chardonnay was bottled with no dosage, and sulfured only after first ferment. Broken stones bed the tight, chalky core, based with quince, and tightened with energetic lemon lined sides. Much more knit and refined than the last time I tasted, and an exciting show for the future.Prices: BC 55.00 Producer: Bella Wines
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07 December 2018

Tenuta Luce della Vite Lucetext
95PTS

Tenuta Luce della Vite Luce 2015

Montalcino, Siena, Tuscany, ItalyLuce was born of a collaboration of the Marchesi de’ Frescobaldi and Robert Mondavi Families that came the idea of matching the roundness and softness of Merlot with the elegance and structure of Sangiovese in the revered home of the sangiovese-only Brunello di Montalcino. At 350 to 420 metres the Luce estate is among Montalcino 's highest. The sangiovese likes the heights while the merlot is better placed in the clays at the lowest elevations. Since 2002, Lamberto Frescobaldi has been completely responsible for the Luce project keeping a close, watchful eye on the Super Tuscan red with a worldwide reputation. At 15 percent alcohol the 2015 comes calling in a big way with ripe fruit and power. Uncharacteristically showy right out of the gate, the style is rich and powerful but still with enough acidity to keep it fresh and balanced. Think black cherries, dark plums and a plethora of brown spicing. This is a rich year and a rich wine that should be popular with those who love the richer New World style. At only 35 hectolitres per hectare the yields are low and well controlled. Luce spends two years in hand-split oak barriques of which 85 percent are new.Prices: BC 135.00 AB 101.00 ON 100.00 QC 99.00 MB 99.00 Producer: Luce della Vite
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Ruffino Riserva Ducale Oro Chianti Classico Gran Selezionetext
89PTS

Ruffino Riserva Ducale Oro Chianti Classico Gran Selezione 2014

Tuscany, ItalyReserva Ducale Oro Riserva has its mystique beginning in 1927 as Ruffino’s top Tuscan red, but it's only produced in outstanding years. Most of the fruit comes off the Gretole estate with some lesser parts from Santedame both are Chianti Classico sites. The fermented wine is aged in oak, stainless steel and concrete vats for 36 months and spends additional time in bottle before release. About 85 percent of the fruit is sangiovese with additions of colorino, merlot and cabernet sauvignon. Look for a full on earthy, forest floor, nose of red fruits and mushrooms. The attack is rich and round with red/black fruit flavours carrying drying tannins that will need some more bottle time to disperse. Traditional Italian pairings include pasta Bolognese, wild boar ragu, or eggplant Parmesan. New plantings and clonal work done almost two decades ago are paying off at Ruffino’s many estates; The appearance of the Gran Selezione tag on Chianti labels (retroactive to 2010) marks each Chianti producer’s best effort.Prices: BC 46.99 ON 47.95 QC 45.00 NS 50.00 Producer: Tenimenti Ruffino
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06 December 2018

Tenuta Luce Brunello di Montalcinotext
94PTS

Tenuta Luce Brunello di Montalcino 2013

Montalcino, Siena, Tuscany, ItalyTwenty years ago there was no Brunello at Luce because it wasn’t in the initial vision of the Frescobaldi’s or the Mondavi’s to produce a Super Tuscan with merlot and sangiovese. Today the incredibly well-tended and positioned 217-acre estate vineyard yields a small amount of Brunello from a select block within the estate. The quantity is small, and it comes off some the higher, cooler sites planted to sangiovese over sandstone and limestone. The Brunelli aged a year in mostly old Slavonian oak, with only ten percent new to best reveal its impressive fruit and terroir. The style is modern, with a red fruit demeanour and that savoury, balsamic, Mediterranean countryside aroma. In the mouth it has a sophisticated, polished mix of cherries and cacao dust, with just enough tannin to suggest a structure that will age through 2025. This wine is now a different level than its early years. Try this with a favourite steak cut.Prices: BC 93.00 AB 98.00 ON 120.00 QC 119.00 ON 240.00 ON 500.00 MB 98.26 Producer: Luce della Vite
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Luce della Vite La Vite Lucentetext
91PTS

Luce della Vite La Vite Lucente 2015

Tuscany, ItalyA wet winter replenished the vineyards and set up 2015 to be a good year. A dry summer and a touch of rain in the first week of August set the stage for an excellent vintage. In this perfect harvest, the sangiovese was picked in the first week in September while the merlot was harvested during the third week. Lucente is a selection of fruit from the same vineyard as its sister cru, Luce. The difference is the style: Lucente is fruit forward and its made to be consumed earlier but in years like 2015 it can be larger than life. The wine opens with a touch of cedar (old chest drawer) before the fruit busts through. On the palate, ripe black cherries and wild strawberries rush from front to back with a whack of spice and Mediterranean garrigue. This is fun to drink now but will age well for a decade. For Lucente the fermentation is in stainless steel vats for 12 days with a total of 22 days of skin contact. Ageing is divided between 55 percent new French oak, 5 percent new American oak and the remainder is aged in reused French barriques for twelve months. Lucente production is 31,000 cases.Prices: BC 34.99 AB 31.00 ON 30.00 QC 37.50 QC 90.00 MB 41.00 NS 40.00 ON 90.00 1500 NF 42.00 Producer: Luce della Vite
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Antinori Pian delle Vigne Brunello di Montalcinotext
92PTS

Antinori Pian delle Vigne Brunello di Montalcino 2013

Montalcino, Siena, Tuscany, ItalyPian comes off one of the warmest sites in Brunello that can be blessing in most years. The vineyard is lovingly tended by Fabio Ratto and the wine is consistently ripe. Pian delle Vigne is quietly aged in 3000 to 8000 litre oak casks long free from any oak influence in the flavours. Its clay over limestone soils are riddled with small stones yielding purity of fruit and spice on the nose with bright floral, eucalyptus notes and black cherry, plum, liquorice aromas. The attack is generous, almost weighty, with impressive fine-grained tannins and rich dark plum, licorice and raspberry jam flavours that finish long and silky with flecks of brown spice. A perfect blend of the old and the new that will easily cellar thorough 2023 and beyond.Prices: BC 70.99 AB 70.00 ON 61.95 QC 53.75 NB 65.00 PEI 65.00 Producer: Marchesi Antinori
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Castello di Ama San Lorenzo Chianti Classico Gran Selezionetext
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Castello di Ama San Lorenzo Chianti Classico Gran Selezione 2013

Siena, Tuscany, ItalyCastello di Ama comes out of Gaiole, near the southern edge of Chianti Classico. The wine is made from a mix of ten year and older vineyard blocks. The style is Italian rustic elegance. Pipe tobacco and ripe cherries greet the nose with earthy forest floor notes. There’s an obvious density of red fruit on the attack. The tannins are rich and fine-grained, and the palate is at first sweet but quickly subdued by a savoury, plummy/cherry fruit. Well balanced and poised to live in the bottle for more than a decade. Selezione rules state all grapes must be produced by the winery itself and the wine cannot be sold before 30 months after harvest.Prices: BC 53.99 Producer: Castello di Ama
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Cervaro della Salatext
93PTS

Cervaro della Sala 2016

Umbria, ItalyWinter rains led to a vigourous start in the vineyards in 2016 that pulled back in July when warm days and cool nights restored order among the vines. The picking began with chardonnay in late August followed two weeks later by the grechetto. The winery experience is all gravity and after a short four hours of skin contact the must goes into stainless steel tanks before heading to barrel where the primary and the malolactic fermentation take place. Some three months later the chardonnay goes back to tank to be blended with 10 percent grechetto that is fermented separately in stainless steel. Post bottling, the wine spends several months resting at Castello della Sala. The wine has a light straw yellow colour. The aromas are bright with citrus, stony, pear, notes and spicy lees. The attack is dry and fresh evoking quince, butter, lime and grapefruit within a tight framework of oak with a dusting of hazelnuts. Try it with crab cakes, squash ravioli, or mushroom risotto. We love the leaner, cooler evolution of this wine, you can confidently age from four to six years. Cervaro takes its name from the Monaldeschi della Vipera family which owned the Castello della Sala in the 14th century. The Antinori family acquired the property in 1940 and the first release of Cervaro della Sala was in 1985.Prices: BC 66.00 ON 68.95 QC 59.75 Producer: Castello della Sala
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Tenuta Marchese Antinori Chianti Classico Riservatext
92PTS

Tenuta Marchese Antinori Chianti Classico Riserva 2015

Tuscany, ItalyIn 2015, warm days and cool nights were a steady pattern during the growing season, leading to a vintage to remember. For some the quality is reminiscent of the fabulous 1997s. I tasted this wine alongside the 2015 Tignanello because the fruit for both comes off the same site and the Riserva more than held its own. The nose is a fruit bomb mixing wild black red fruit sprinkled with spice and tobacco. The attack is vertical and vibrant with savoury, salty, mineral notes mixed with pure cherry fruit. The label is historic, issued first in 1928, but with the inauguration of the Antinori nel Chianti Classico cellars, the family sought to revive and reinterpret the Tuscan classic with a Riserva offering and some offering it is. Keep three to five years before you begin to open this gem.Prices: BC 30.49 AB 31.00 MB 33.00 ON 30.00 QC 30.00 NB 36.00 PEI 28.00 Producer: Marchesi Antinori
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Villa Antinori Chianti Classico Riservatext
90PTS

Villa Antinori Chianti Classico Riserva 2015

Tuscany, ItalyIn 2015, warm days and cool nights were a steady pattern during the growing season leading to a vintage to remember. For some the quality is reminiscent of the fabulous 1997s. The label is historic, issued first in 1928, but with the inauguration of the Antinori nel Chianti Classico cellars at Bargino, the family sought to revive and reinterpret the Tuscan classic with a Riserva offering, and some offering it is. After a 15-day ferment in stainless steel the sangiovese goes through malolactic while the merlot and cabernet sauvignon go through malo in barrel. The final blend is aged in mostly larger casks and partly in barrel for some 20 months. The nose opens with meaty, black fruit notes showing some of the intensity of 2015. The attack is as rich and powerful as it gets for sangiovese. The combination of earthy, forest floor notes and intense black cherry, black raspberry fruit is impressive as is the long persistent finish, marked with light vanilla, mineral and balsamic notes. Keep three to five years before you begin to open this gem.Prices: BC 30.49 AB 31.00 MB 33.00 ON 30.00 QC 30.00 NB 36.00 PEI 28.00 Producer: Marchesi Antinori
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Antinori Tignanellotext
97PTS

Antinori Tignanello 2015

Tuscany, ItalyThis is a great Tignanello and definitely one to lay away if you are a collector. As chief winemaker Renzo Cotarella so aptly says, the place penetrates the wine. In 2015, warm days and cool nights were a steady pattern during the growing season, leading to fully ripe, dense, almost sweet black fruit with fine acidity. It delivers the vibrancy and verticality you expect from Tignanello (and sangiovese) with licorice and minerality. The tannins are highly polished and would suggest you could drink this now, but I say wait a few years to give this wine a chance to really show off. Undervalued, to say the least.Prices: BC 112.99 AB 99.00 ON 103.00 ON 68.00 375 NB 95.00 NF 110.00 QC 104.00 MB 117.00 Producer: Marchesi Antinori
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Antinori Pèppoli Chianti Classicotext
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Antinori Pèppoli Chianti Classico 2015

Tuscany, ItalyThe move to Bargino and the new Antinori winery signals a significant commitment by the family to raise up Chianti Classico. Peppoli is one of several Antinori estates making top-flight Chianti Classico. 2015 is a fine vintage and with a little extra heft Peppoli looks particularly attractive. Floral and fresh, there is plenty of earthy, black cherry fruit running down the middle of this lengthy, complex red. This elegant reserve wine should age effortlessly through 2025.Prices: BC 26.99 AB 23.00 ON 20.00 QC 24.00 NF 26.00 MB 26.00 NB 30.00 NS 31.00 Producer: Marchesi Antinori
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Villa Antinori Toscanatext
89PTS

Villa Antinori Toscana 2015

Tuscany, Italy2015 is one of those years when the lesser labels can shine given the quality of the fruit. That’s the case with this Toscana IGT, a mix of mostly sangiovese with small quantities of cabernet sauvignon, merlot and syrah. The attack is richer, the fruit darker than the norm but still with enough red fruit brightness to keep it fresh. Juicy black cherries, dark plums and spicy vanilla notes give it a touch more heft in 2015 which should have wide appeal. That said, the textures remain supple and eminently drinkable. A good year to stock up on. The wine is aged in a mix of French, Hungarian, and American oak barrels for twelve months before it gets a further eight months in bottle. Try this with a lamb sausage tomato sauced pasta. Interestingly, ‘Villa Rosso’ was first produced in 1928 by Niccolò Antinori, father of Piero Antinori and was revived by Piero Antinori in 2001 as an IGT wine made from estate fruit.Prices: BC 25.49 AB 25.00 MB 27.00 ON 25.50 QC 25.50 NB 31.50 NS 32.50 Producer: Marchesi Antinori
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05 December 2018

Domaine de Pellehaut Harmonie de Gascogne Blanctext
87PTS

Domaine de Pellehaut Harmonie de Gascogne Blanc 2017

Cotes de Gascogne, Sud-Ouest, FranceThe property is planted to Seven vareties each of white and red, producing a number of different cuvees, Sichel doesn't own, but works with this property. This is a blend of every white on the property: sauvignon blanc, colombard, ugni blanc, chardonnay, gros manseng, petit manseng and folle blanche. Fresh, fruity accessible with youthful pear, yellow and green apple on a tighter, steely frame. This carries 4 g/l RS to offset the bracing acidity, and make it a suitable pour for white fish or clams.Prices: BC 18.00 Producer: Domaine de Pellehaut
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Bodegas Toro Albala Eléctrico Fino 3 Fasestext
90PTS

Bodegas Toro Albala Eléctrico Fino 3 Fases NV

Sherry Jerez - Manzanilla, SpainBone dry and awash with hints of large flake sea salts, almond skins along a gently plump, sweet stone palate, this subtle, pale yellow fino has both generosity and freshness. Less overtly salty than its coastal Jerez counterparts, this is content with its nuttiness, citrus and meadow grass notes. This is a solera that began 65 years ago, though the wine is no more than ten years old (averaging five) meaning it's a fino with extended time under flor, adding to its complexity. As with all finos from Montilla, no fortification is needed for the flor to thrive. The shining packaging, and name Fino Electrico reflects the winery's past existence as the original power plant in Aguilar de la Frontera.Prices: ON 36.95 Producer: Bodegas Toro Albala
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M. Chapoutier Domaine de Bila-Haut Blanctext
88PTS

M. Chapoutier Domaine de Bila-Haut Blanc 2017

Côtes du Roussillon, Roussillon, South of France, FranceI hadn't tasted this wine in years, so was great to come across a bottle of this Roussillon blend of grenache blanc, roussanne, marsanne and macabeu. Chapoutier's familiar braille labels and biodynamic beliefs trickled down to southern France and the stony soiled terraces of Côtes du Roussillon, imparting a watery white of lemon blossom, pear skin, underripe melon and white grapefruit pith along a lean palate. The finish is clipped and bright, with a slight flush of warmth and a rise of sour citrus and lemon thistle. Chill this and pour with Thai scented curry or seafood.Prices: BC 16.99 Producer: M. Chapoutier
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Terravista Fandangotext
91PTS

Terravista Fandango 2017

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThere are not many wines I would buy without tasting but you could add Fandango to a compact list. This seventh edition is magic, again, thanks to its unique blend of albariño (57) and verdejo (43) grown on Terravista's granitic, sloping upper Naramata Bench home site, Lone Hand Ranch. The nose and palate are super expressive loaded with limes, apricots, pears, licorice and salty, mineral electric acidity. Only just richer than the straight albariño but eminently drinkable. It’s always sold out so get on the list for next year’s release or scour restaurant and private wine shop lists. Quality.Prices: BC 24.90 Producer: Terravista Vineyards
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Van Westen Vineyards Vivacioustext
89PTS

Van Westen Vineyards Vivacious 2017

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2017 Vivacious is a full-blown pinot blanc with a dash of pinot gris for good measure, and is both barrel and tank fermented. The attack is bright and juicy with honeyed citrus, pear from front to back, a dusting of Okanagan scrubby sagebrush, and grass. Vivacious is from their Home Lot Vineyard on the Naramata Bench. I love this wine with curry, so simply add your favourite protein or vegetable and stir.Prices: BC 20.00 Producer: Van Westen Vineyards
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04 December 2018

Laroche Chablis Saint Martintext
88PTS

Laroche Chablis Saint Martin 2016

Chablis, Burgundy, FranceSaint Martin was a Monk in the 4th century, and this wine is named for the church started in the 9th century outside LaRoche. This is a lean, tight, sleek form, led by green apple and wet stone, seasoned with tangerine pith and touched with grass. Lacking in concentration, but not in acidity, this would work very well with lemongrass clams.Prices: BC 28.00 Producer: Laroche
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Domaine Gerard Tremblay Petit Chablistext
88PTS

Domaine Gerard Tremblay Petit Chablis 2017

Chablis, Burgundy, FranceClassic Petit Chablis from its super pale color to its ultra lean citrus-scented mineral nose flecked with wet stone notes. The palate is equally trim with plenty of crisp refreshing acidity and a strong mineral undercurrent. This wine needs food, and oysters would be the number one pick for me. Simple, fresh, correct.Prices: BC 28.99 AB 21.95 Producer: Gerard Tremblay
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Domaine Christian Moreau Chablis 1er Cru Vaillontext
92PTS

Domaine Christian Moreau Chablis 1er Cru Vaillon 2016

Chablis, Burgundy, FranceSuch a wonderful introduction of freshly squeezed lemon over rock salt and seashells. There’s an appealing hint of struck match, fresh cut green apple and a whiff of carrot top as it spills across your mouth, so dry and clipped before flushing out the long palate with juicy lemon, custard, grass, green apple skin flecked with sea salt, chalk and warm broken stones. The intensity is premier cru, as is the complexity. You can drink this now, especially with freshly shucked oysters, but it will continue to improve in bottle over the next seven years.Prices: BC 53.99 QC 40.00 MB 40.00 BC 47.20 Producer: Domaine Christian Moreau
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Domaine Christian Moreau Chablis Grand Cru Valmurtext
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Domaine Christian Moreau Chablis Grand Cru Valmur 2016

Chablis, Burgundy, FrancePineapple is not a descriptor I associate with Grand Cru Chablis but this 2016 Valmur offers it up in spades. Its not fat or sweet or ripe but cool and dried and pithy with a wealth of bright citrus to cover it. It's crisp and precise but with an underlying power that is yet to be released. Moreau owns 1.2 hectares in the masterful grand cru and they seem to get a lot out of it. A touch of new oak mixed with older barrels round out bright fruit and intensity of the wine. You could drink this in now, but I suggest waiting five years for the full picture.Prices: BC 92.99 AB 55.00 MB 58.00 Producer: Domaine Christian Moreau
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03 December 2018

Fort Berens Reserve Pinot Noirtext
87PTS

Fort Berens Reserve Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Reserve pinot is a 46/54 mix of estate fruit and fruit harvested from The Rise Vineyard in Vernon. Some 25 percent of the wine is whole cluster pressed prior to a carbonic fermentation in search of drinkability and fruit. The rest of the batch was crushed and layered on top. Post-ferment it spends a year in new and seasoned French oak. The attack is tart with fresh acidity lighting up the sides of the palate. Light in colour and texture, there is an elegance here and an underlying black cherry fruit trying to escape the wood. More refined than their regular pinot and drinkable now but I would wait a year for this to settle in and show its true face.Prices: BC 29.99 Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Fort Berens Pinot Noirtext
86PTS

Fort Berens Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2016 is a 75/25 mix of Lillooet fruit and Vernon fruit, all aged in French oak (30 percent new) for nine months. For the moment the wood sits firmly on the slightly underripe, sour cherry fruit. There’s a gentle reserved hand here, aside from the oak, but the sweet and sour fruit flavours are less attractive. Give this another year in the bottle to pull it all together before you serve it with grilled salmon.Prices: BC 25.99 Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Haywire White Label Pinot Noirtext
89PTS

Haywire White Label Pinot Noir 2017

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSoft on the palate but finely detailed with an ample thorny, pitchy grip, this earthy, medium bodied pinot noir is imbued with medicinal raspberry, black cherry, sasparilla, star anise and desert sagebrush atop a sturdy black plum base. From Oliver's higher elevation and organically farmed Secrest Vineyard (purchased by Haywire in 2018), this was native fermented in clay amphorae as well as concrete, with the former on the skins for nine months before the two parts were blended prior to bottling. A naturalist, unadulterated lens for central Okanagan pinot, which is a bold move. This youthful wine deserves an equally bold match at this time, like duck or roasted winter squash.Prices: BC 26.90 Producer: Okanagan Crush Pad Winery
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Fort Berens Pinot Noirtext
86PTS

Fort Berens Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaPouring a brownish red hue, this earthy, soft pinot noir is three quarters estate and the remainder from The Rise Vineyard in Vernon. The whole was aged in French oak for nine months, including 30 percent new. The wood is over-evident in its framing of the gentle pinot, one sided with light wood-grained tannins that wrap around a plush palate. Dried cherry, moss, muddy earth, bitter cocoa, sour berries linger on the hot finish, one slightly cloudy due to no fining or filtration. I appreciate the lighter style attempt, but this seems somewhat muddled between the use of oak and ripe fruit and the lighter style, leaving it disjointed.Prices: BC 25.99 Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Fort Berens Reserve Pinot Noirtext
88PTS

Fort Berens Reserve Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaA step up in price and quality for the Reserve Pinot Noir, this is a blend of estate fruit (46 percent) with the remainder from The Rise Vineyard in Vernon. One quarter of the grapes were whole cluster, which underwent carbonic fermentation, bringing fruity drinkability to the wine. The remainder was crushed and layered on top, fermented traditionally, with native yeast. The whole was aged for one year in French oak, part of which was new. Tannins are rubbed fine, yet enough to house dried and fresh cherry, forest berries, leather, brown spices. Drinking well now, and would be a great partner to pork chops.Prices: BC 29.99 Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Rocky Creek Pinot Noirtext
86PTS

Rocky Creek Pinot Noir 2016

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2015 growing season was a winner in the Cowichan Valley and this wine is showing some improvement over last year. The colour is pale red with fresh, spicy, forest floor - more terroir, less fruit. The attack is fresh with skinny, sappy cherry, plums and cedar with a film of oak and some drying tannins in the finish. It will need some more time in bottle. Nice to see a natural cork this year. Best now with fatty dishes, like duck liver paté.Prices: BC 30.00 Producer: Rocky Creek Winery
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Greywacke Pinot Noirtext
91PTS

Greywacke Pinot Noir 2014

Marlborough, South Island, New ZealandIt's nice to see a well done red variety from Marlborough, forever home of savvy. This was planted on the hills of the Wairau in the southern valleys. Darker, concentrated style, with plum, peppery spices, back raspberries, forest berries bedding a supple, silky palate, and with a nice cedar grip of brisk tannins to the finish. From the Southern Valleys, principally from the clay/loam loess of Brancott / Ben Morven ridge, this is predominantly Dijon 115, 777, 667, and was 20 percent whole bunch, native ferment, plunged 2x daily for a couple of weeks before going into oak (40 percent new) where it was left to rest for 16 months prior to blending.Prices: BC 46.00 Producer: Greywacke
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Tantalus Vineyards Maija Pinot Noirtext
89PTS

Tantalus Vineyards Maija Pinot Noir 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaMaija, named for Tantalus' owner Eric Savics' daughter (although there are a couple other prominent females at the winery with the same name, albeit with different spellings) used to fall under the Juveniles Pinot Noir label. The wine has now graduated, and earned its own striking Dempsey Bob mask on the label. Younger estate Dijon plantings plus fruit from a neighbouring south east Kelowna vineyard were native fermented, then into French oak (20 percent new) for 11 months prior to blending and bottling. This is a lovely charming and graceful style, with slicked wild raspberry, plum some dusty cardamom spicing, and a siding of leather. Very youthful and tight, drinking well now and with energy to carry for short term.Prices: BC 21.75 Producer: Tantalus Vineyards
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Bench 1775 Pinot Noirtext
88PTS

Bench 1775 Pinot Noir 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaLovely dusky plum, wild cherry course through this darker shaded pinot noir, with a fine peppery grip and tug of wood siding the darkly perfumed black fruit. There's a bitter cassis / espresso nip on the finish. The wine makes more sense when you know that this had 11.5 percent syrah and a degree of merlot added to the estate pinot noir before some time in French oak (30 percent new). This bigger pinot would be a great pour alongside duck.Prices: BC 25.90 Producer: Bench 1775 Winery
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Unsworth Vineyards Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

Unsworth Vineyards Pinot Noir 2016

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaIs this best Vancouver Island pinot noir at the moment? I think so. It’s very west coast spicy and wild with a definite vitality and sea air freshness. Darker fruits, wet stone minerality with a slight acidic underbite and floral undertones, this is fresh and bright throughout with a finish suggesting it will age well. The fruit comes off a North Cowichan site, mixing three clones. It’s aged 15 months in barrel and is about as terroir-based as it gets. Salmon grilled on an open fire on the beach is the match.Prices: BC 26.00 Producer: Unsworth Vineyards
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Blue Grouse Estate Pinot Noirtext
89PTS

Blue Grouse Estate Pinot Noir 2016

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2016 follows on the 2015 mixing 85/15 pinot noir and gamay all from Vancouver Island. The pinot noir clone is unknown although it is said to be one of the last vine imports into Canada from France prior to quarantine regulations in the early 1990s. At 13.8 percent it is almost refreshing, the nose is fragrant and pinot-like. It’s not as dark as last year but it’s spicy and the acidity is bright. The attack is mouth filling with notes of cedar, black cherries and better fine-grained tannins this year. The fruit is hand-harvested; yields sit around 2-tons to the acre. The vines grow on heavy clay-loam soils with minimal irrigation. The pinot noir and gamay is aged separately and aged 18 months in new (16% new) plus two and three-year-old wood. The grapes are blended at the final assemblage and bottled and aged 12 months in neutral French and American oak. Stylish and making a positive Island statement.Prices: BC 27.00 Producer: Blue Grouse Estate Winery
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Blue Grouse Quill Pinot Noirtext
87PTS

Blue Grouse Quill Pinot Noir 2016

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaThis is honest pinot, made with 50 percent Cowichan Valley fruit and 50 percent from the Okanagan. The attack is surprisingly rich, with warm, peppery, red/black fruit and a touch of tannin. This wine is aged in older barrels of French and American oak that are beginning to fade, leaving a slightly more authentic pinot character. Look for sour cherry, leaf, soya notes that finish clean and proper. An interesting mix of cool and warm fruit that’s showing increasingly more promise. Grilled salmon is the pairing here. Impressive 4000 cases made.Prices: BC 25.00 Producer: Blue Grouse Estate Winery
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01 December 2018

Selbach Riesling (Fish Label)text
89PTS

Selbach Riesling (Fish Label) 2016

Mosel, GermanyWhat does one say about the 2016 vintage in Germany? Balance, balance, balance, perhaps best expressed by well-known US commentator and importer Thierry Theise who says the vintage is “neither a fruit driven, nor floral driven, nor mineral driven, nor acid driven vintage – it is all of these." In the case of this friendly Selbach Mosel blend, there is touch less electricity or bright acidity in 2016, but there is more weight and flavour. It’s still juicy with ripe nectarine and lemon, making it eminently enjoyable right now. Oh, and you can pair it with anything.Prices: BC 16.99 Producer: J & H Selbach
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Benjamin Bridge Rieslingtext
89PTS

Benjamin Bridge Riesling 2016

Gaspereau Valley, Nova Scotia, CanadaThe first Riesling from Canada's sparkling sweethearts, Benjamin Bridge, this carves a channel out of honeysuckle, rosewater, cold cream, ripe melon, lemon balm, bitter lime peel, finishing with a kiss of anise. Acidity is shining, and the alcohol is slight (9 degrees). Best enjoyed with a steaming bowl of moules or clams.Prices: BC 30.00 Producer: Benjamin Bridge
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Greywacke Rieslingtext
88PTS

Greywacke Riesling 2015

Marlborough, South Island, New ZealandFrom certified organic, 20-ish year Ashmore Vineyard, adjacent to the mouth of the Brancott Valley comes this Kiwi riesling, a grape we're not as familiar with from NZ. Driving lime, mandarine, on a softer, off-dry palate, lined with glycerine. Hints of spiced aromatic melon filter through river water, medium-bodied finish. This was whole bunch pressed, 50 percent tank fermented and 50 percent in older oak with native yeast before a 5-7 stint in oak prior to bottling.Prices: BC 40.00 Producer: Greywacke
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Culmina Family Estate Decoratext
89PTS

Culmina Family Estate Decora 2016

Golden Mile Bench, Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom Margaret's Bench, this vintage used a bit of sussreserve that purposefully preserves a gentle bump of RS, working to counter the tight, bright acidity that streaks across the palate. Tight, chalky lemon, lemon curd on a lean palate, one that still feels generous through the finish. Decora is Latin for beautiful, and comes from 595m up on Margaret's Bench, the home estate of Culmina.Prices: BC 21.00 Producer: Culmina Family Estate Winery
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Fort Berens Reserve Rieslingtext
89PTS

Fort Berens Reserve Riesling 2017

Lillooet, British Columbia, CanadaThis brand new Reserve Riesling is sourced entirely from Fort Berens' estate vineyard in Lillooet. After whole cluster pressing, this was cool fermented for seven weeks in stainless before nine months' bottle age prior to release. Juicy, potent pear flesh, mandarin, lime, on a full, fleshy palate, one shaped by limey sherbet to a snappy finish. Off dry and frisky but with perfect balance and a modicum of complexity. Well done; a lovely solo sipper.Prices: BC 22.99 Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Evolve Rieslingtext
87PTS

Evolve Riesling 2017

CanadaThis is a juicy, fresh, pleasantly ripe, but mostly dry white wine that would be fun to share at a party. A fine mix of lemon, peach and tangerine with a tangy mid-palate and finish. A good partner for seafood bites, sushi rolls and spicy dishes. Fair value.Prices: BC 19.99 Producer: Evolve Cellars
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Time Rieslingtext
88PTS

Time Riesling 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaLike last year, the house style takes a step back to offer up a fresh, mouthwatering, food-friendly riesling with just a hint of sugar for balance. Crisp, fresh cut apples mix with citrus and nectarine skin. A touch of lime rind, minerality and salt wrap up this easy-to-drink white that will match a lot of foods. I recommend trying it with a favourite curry or grilled pork.Prices: BC 24.99 Producer: Time Estate Winery
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Loosen Bros Dr L. Rieslingtext
88PTS

Loosen Bros Dr L. Riesling 2016

GermanyDr. L. is Loosen Bros. introductory riesling, and always consistent and affordable, especially given its all Mosel fruit content. This is a fruit salad of juicy yellow and green fruits: lime, lemon, green apple, gooseberries all crest a juicy, fresh just off-dry palate. Limey sherbet sticks on the side. Food friendly and ready to drink there a tiny bit of fizz keeping it fresh. A perfect spicy sushi wine.Prices: BC 17.99 ON 14.95 NFL 19.16 SAQ 16.05 MB 18.39 Producer: Weingut Dr. Loosen
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Balthasar Ress Hattenheimer Schützenhaus Riesling Kabinetttext
88PTS

Balthasar Ress Hattenheimer Schützenhaus Riesling Kabinett 2016

Rheingau, GermanyThis is from the erste lage Schützenhaus, which is the equivalent of a premier cru. The south-southwest sloping vineyard is around 150 meters in altitude, and fortunately protected (in German, "schützen") from cold easterly winds. White peach, stones, pear butter, light honey, yellow apple ride a generously juicy palate, one tightly hemmed and seasoned with fine spicing to create a reserved whole.Prices: BC 24.99 ON 22.95 QC 20.00 MB 21.95 Producer: Weingut Balthasar Ress
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Rieslingfreak No. 8 Polish Hill River Schatzkammer Rieslingtext
93PTS

Rieslingfreak No. 8 Polish Hill River Schatzkammer Riesling 2017

Polish Hill River, Clare Valley, South Australia, AustraliaLike BC's Synchromesh winery, Rieslingfreak walks a line, both with us, and with nature, pitting the crazy residual sugar 58 g/l with 10.2 g/l acid. A massive swell of acidity rises the palate, filling the mouth far beyond the 6 degrees alcohol would let you believe. Delicate, but with density, this flows with honeysuckle, pear, kiwi and grapefruit, scented with roses. This is sourced from the same few rows every year, planted east/west in the Jaeschke Vineyard in Polish Hill. A true Riesling Freak.Prices: BC 35.00 Producer: Rieslingfreak
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