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Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Tasting Notes

Tastings: February 2022

28 February 2022

Boland Cellar One Formation Shiraz Grenache Viogniertext
89PTS

Boland Cellar One Formation Shiraz Grenache Viognier 2018

Paarl, Coastal Region, South AfricaThis Paarl red is a Rhône style blend dominated by shiraz (73%) vineyards in the warmer Paardeberg area. The grenache (23%) and viognier (4%) grapes are from Northern Paarl. Each variety is fermented separately and then blended and aged in second and third use French oak barrels for 12 to 14 months. The nose opens with rich black cherry and brambleberry that spills onto the palate. The tannins are supple, and the finished balanced but a bit sweet. It will have many fans and would be okay with any spicy, rich dinner entrée.Prices:
BC$29.99750ml
Producer: Boland Cellar
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Guigal Côtes du Rhônetext
88PTS

Guigal Côtes du Rhône 2018

Côtes du Rhône, Rhone Valley, FranceCôtes du Rhône can be many things, but at Guigal, it's a money-maker based on its reliability and attention to detail. The blend is a 50/40/10 Syrah/Grenache/Mourvèdre blend using 35+-year-old vines. They ultimately select one out of every hundred lots they taste, producing 4.5 million bottles a year. The result in 2018 is a typically dry, floral, aromatic nose and cherry and pepper flavours with black olives and a hint of syrah meatiness — a perfect match for lamb or pork dishes or winter vegetables.Prices:
BC$25.99750ml
AB$21.00750ml
ON$19.95750ml
QC$19.25750ml
Producer: E. Guigal
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Moulin de Gassac Guilhemtext
88PTS

Moulin de Gassac Guilhem 2020

l'Hérault, Vin de Pays d'Oc, Languedoc, Sud de France, FranceThis is the second label of the famed Mas de Daumas, from Famille Guibert. Planted on limestone slopes, Guilhem is a blend of 50% syrah, 30% grenache, 20% carignan, destemmed and co-fermented in stainless, where it spends 7 months aging prior to bottling. Smooth and silken, with forrest berries, wild cherries, lightly cracked pepper on a medium body, finishing with an alluring wash of salinity. Acidity is brisk, easily lofting this to the finish. A friendly, smart choice for mid-week meals, and great value too.Prices:
BC$16.00750ml
Producer: Moulin de Gassac
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Château Coupe-Roses Naturamaniatext
88PTS

Château Coupe-Roses Naturamania 2020

Minervois, Languedoc, Sud de France, FranceChâteau Coupe-Roses is situated at La Caunette, a small village in Minervois, close to the Montagne Noire or Black Mountain. The organically farmed vines sit over limestone uplands at 250 and 400m above sea level. The cépage is a mix of cinsault, grenache, syrah, and mourvèdre. Interestingly this wine is made with no added sulphites or yeasts. The colour is purple/black before a rush of black fruits and underbrush with bright acidity and dry, youthful tannins with a final dusting of pepper. It could use some ageing to allow the tannins to soften and the wine to get a little more expansive, but it has an exciting edge that makes it fun to drink now too. Currently, it needs to be served with grilled beef or pork. If you like wines with zero intervention, this is it.Prices:
BC$26.95750ml
Producer: Château Coupe-Roses
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Clos Lentiscus Kikiriki Tintotext
87PTS

Clos Lentiscus Kikiriki Tinto 2018

Penedès, Catalunya (Catalonia Cataluña), SpainFrom the biodynamic and biodiverse world of Penedès' Clos Lentiscus, in Catalonia, this natural / organic / biodynamic blend of cofermented ull de llebre (tempranillo) and carignan comes from 42 year old vines in La Dolinera vineyard. It was native fermented in stainless, where it remained over the winter and until bottling the following spring, with no additions or deletions. Pouring a lighter crimson hue, this carries a muddied melange of red florals, tart cranberry, rhubarb, wild flowers across a soft palate, with a rinse of VA and fine, sticky tannins. Very natty, this 1L bottle deserves a brisk chill and some cured meats.Prices:
ON$45.001000ml
Producer: Clos Lentiscus
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Amulet Redtext
90PTS

Amulet Red 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis year's Amulet Red blends 50% Grenache from Kiln House Vineyard in Penticton, 48% Syrah from Suncrest Vineyard in Oliver, and 2% Viognier from Kozier Vineyard in Naramata Bench. This was destemmed and whole berry cold soaked for 5 days, prior to the lignified Grenache stems being added back in and a native ferment beginning. After 3 weeks this was pressed off into neutral French barrels for 7 months' rest. It was bottled unfined and unfiltered, with minimal sulphur. This is a full, deeply cushioned red, with layers of wild blueberry, dark cherry, black raspberry, wild mint, cherry menthol on a velveteen palate. Furry tannins are well absorbed into the dense fruit, and there is a buoy of acidity holding the full 14% afloat through the peppery finish. Remarkabley smoothed and ready to drink now.Prices:
BC$35.00750ml
Producer: Roche Wines
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Gérard Bertrand An 806text
90PTS

Gérard Bertrand An 806 2017

Corbières, Languedoc, Sud de France, FranceA Bertrand GSM blend of grenache, syrah and mourvedre from the famed Corbières region is an overachiever for the price. Post-fermentation, it spends eight months in 225 litre barrels. The result is a delicious 2017 packed full of blackcurrants, black plums, and black cherries dusted with garrigue. The tannins are dense but fine-grained, and only add to the weight of the wine and its finish. Drinkable now with grilled meats or chicken. There is real value here. The 806 references the first traces of the Cathars who built the towering citadels that overlook the vineyard in Corbières.Prices:
BC$19.99750ml
Producer: Gérard Bertrand
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Albet i Noya Petit Albet Brut Reservatext
90PTS

Albet i Noya Petit Albet Brut Reserva 2017

Penedès, Catalunya (Catalonia Cataluña), SpainPetit Albet Brut is your classic Penedès bubble, blending macabeo, xarel·lo and parellada. The label is simple and as clean as the wine, which is a good start. Look for a steady stream of tight bubbles with the scent of toast, fresh cut herbs, and flowers that run into bright green apple and pear, and a stream of acidity that feeds the wine from front to back. It spends 15 months ageing in the bottle to add some autolytic complexity to the mix. The perfect late day wine for tapas or pre-dinner appetizers to kick off the evening. Organically grown fruit.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Albet i Noya
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25 February 2022

Bachelder Grimsby Hillside North Slopes Starry Skies Chardonnaytext
95PTS

Bachelder Grimsby Hillside North Slopes Starry Skies Chardonnay 2019

Lincoln Lakeshore, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaGrimsby Hillside illustrates what we see worldwide: places outside the original classic vineyard sites that can be just as special, if not more. North Slope Starry Skies is a delicious chardonnay full of taut, citrus, nutty; mineral notes that way over-deliver for its price. Bachelder describes it as a "strikingly "beautiful 'Big Sky site east of Hamilton... it is cooler and tends to be harvested quite late, retaining a slatey gunflint purity and ethereal freshness with lacey yet weighty texture, finishing with a marked marzipan-inflected minerality." It sits on washed-down Escarpment rubble, giving it a Bench persona. Then there is the 4.6-billion-year-old meteorite that hit Grimsby Hillside in 2009 that Bachelder surmises likely left the farm with fragments of soil much older than anywhere in Niagara. So buy, drink, and enjoy; this is a chardonnay the country should get behind.Prices:
ON$47.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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Bachelder Saunders Warren Saunders 100 Chardonnaytext
90PTS

Bachelder Saunders Warren Saunders 100 Chardonnay 2019

Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaThe clay, silt, sand, and limestone of the Beamsville Bench are architects of this wine, named after grower Warren Saunders who turned 100 in 2021. The property farm dates to the 1850s and has been in the Saunders family since 1965, and the grapes have been certified organic since 2013. The attack is on the rounder side, with less vitality favouring more richness. Lime, pears, and lemon curd mix with wet stones, yellow apples, and wood spice. The finish is medium-long with silky textures. Ready to drink now through 2027.Prices:
ON$47.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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Bachelder Bai Xu Vignes de 1981 Chardonnaytext
91PTS

Bachelder Bai Xu Vignes de 1981 Chardonnay 2019

Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaBai Xu hails from Four Mile Creek, where some of the oldest vinifera plantings in Ontario grow. It's six kilometres from Lake Ontario and four kilometres from the Niagara River. The site is all Clone 95, now just shy of its twentieth anniversary. Bachelder is a minimalist in winemaking, similar to Meyer Vineyard winemaker Chris Carson. He uses French oak predominantly, and the fermentations are indigenous. After that, the result is all about the site, and this cuvée is metres from the Willms site. The style is as decadent as it gets with Bachelder, with more yellow fruit and a bit of baked pear, but all with the requisite acidity, complexity, and texture. Drink through 2026.Prices:
ON$44.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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Bachelder Willms Vignes de 1983 Chardonnaytext
90PTS

Bachelder Willms Vignes de 1983 Chardonnay 2019

Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaWillms Vignes 1983 was a Bachelder favourite in 2018 when he praised its precision despite a warm year. In 2019, a medium yellow colour was the first thing I noticed from a wine whose vines are among the oldest in Niagara-on-the Lake. Like last year, the style is rich and honeyed for a Bachelder wine, a sort of California/Burgundy style if that makes any sense, with a preponderance of yellow apple and soft-ish acidity. There is a welcome yeasty, leesy note with a slightly bitter aftertaste that balances the wine. Certainly different from Thomas's norm, but nothing a roast a chicken dinner can't handle.Prices:
ON$47.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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Bachelder Cuesta Far-East Man Chardonnaytext
93PTS

Bachelder Cuesta Far-East Man Chardonnay 2020

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaBachelder worked with Cuesta for years as a consultant, all the while adding it to his vineyard memory bank. It sits on the Twenty Mile Bench in rich limestone and silty soils that balance their electricity with a creamy texture. Cuesta, the "old lake coast", is a charming chardonnay with a nutty, garlic lees undertone set off by its mineral, stony, flinty, floral, marine flavours that slide down effortlessly. Randy Ullom (Kendall Jackson) first mentioned the notion of a "filet mignon" section to me decades ago, referring to a block of vines in a Santa Barbara chardonnay vineyard. So it's only sensible to hear it from another chardonnay guru as Thomas waxes about "that far-off bit back near the forest escarpment ravine – no wonder it ripens late! We just 'dig' the Far-Eastern end of the vineyard, Man!" Super value.Prices:
ON$44.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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Bachelder Wismer-Wingfield Ouest Chardonnaytext
94PTS

Bachelder Wismer-Wingfield Ouest Chardonnay 2019

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaThe Wismer-Wingfield chardonnay fruit is the latest ripening parcel at Bachelder. It's also "the furthest from Lake Ontario (6.8 km!), at the highest elevation (169 metres at the very top)." Long hangtime always makes for intense flavours, which you get in this wine. If Bachelder were in charge of Ontario's, hell, Canada's jumble of wine classifications, he would be sure to have a Cru level, and this label would be one of them. The palate is all about power and length, and as it ages, it will get even more intense. Look for a saline style of chardonnay with richness and mouth-filling qualities over a stony mineral chalky undercurrent, adding complexity and length. Drink or hold; there is no rush here.Prices:
ON$47.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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Bachelder Wismer-Foxcroft Nord Chardonnaytext
95PTS

Bachelder Wismer-Foxcroft Nord Chardonnay 2019

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaNord comes off a small plot within the more extensive and highly-lauded Wismer-Foxcroft Vineyard, some 5 km from Lake Ontario. The vines are 30+ years old and grow on a steep, stony-silty and dolomitic limestone slope. The result is saline citrus with all its energy intact after a 16-month rest in older French barrels sans bâtonnage. This wine is not about fruit, but rather a place, as it was last year. The limestone supplies the energy and tension to what is flinty, slightly reductive green apple, and lemon peel. Again this is the kind of wine that should make the Burgundians nervous, but at $48, I’m guessing no one takes it too seriously. Stock up while you can, folks.Prices:
ON$47.95750ml
Producer: Mary et Thomas Delaney-Bachelder et Filles
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24 February 2022

Chronos Rieslingtext
87PTS

Chronos Riesling 2020

East Kelowna, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaIf you want great terroir for riesling, look no further than East Kelowna. That's exactly what Chronos, a relatively new brand from Time Family of Wines, did. This is light and approachable, showing lime blossom and candied green apple. It finishes just off-dry thanks to a bump of residual sugar (7 g/L), while still being crisp and refreshing. Perfect to enjoy on its own or paired with lighter curries.Prices:
BC$27.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Frind Estate Winery Rieslingtext
89PTS

Frind Estate Winery Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2020 mixes fruit from the north and south Okanagan, and from sites that get plenty of hang time. The nose is fragrant with pleasant yellow apple and honeysuckle with subtle orange and litchi that add some refined mid-palate lift. The fruit is ripe, but slightly bitter guava notes pull it all together in the finish. It's a perfect wine for food, and you can serve it with anything from margherita pizza to a favourite sushi roll. Well done.Prices:
BC$24.99750ml
Producer: Frind Estate
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Phantom Creek Estates Rieslingtext
90PTS

Phantom Creek Estates Riesling 2019

East Kelowna, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe red wines at Phantom Creek get a lot of press, and rightly so, but the white wines are no less impressive, as demonstrated by this riesling made from Okanagan Falls fruit. It is decidedly less crisp than the 2017 or even the 2018, but it comes with a fragrant, exotic, Alsace style. It is aged in a mix of stainless steel and neutral barrels to preserve the authentic flavours of dry white peach with potent extract. Yellow fruits, honeysuckle, and dried pears persist throughout the palate. A wine of texture and length that was made for food.Prices:
BC$33.00750ml
Producer: Phantom Creek Estates
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Kitsch Esther's Block Rieslingtext
89PTS

Kitsch Esther's Block Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis special selection comes off a southwest facing, clay soiled block of their Lake Country estate, planted in 2013 to clone 239 riesling. After whole cluster pressing, this was fermented in neutral French puncheons, followed by 3 months on lees. The wood gives a round softness to this off-dry wine, feeling sweeter than its 2.8 g/L would imply. That said, ample racy limey acidity cuts through any sweetness, leaving a streak of green apple, crunchy pear, white grapefruit in its lengthy, persistantwake. Would be well suited to fragrant Vietnamese dishes now.Prices:
BC$32.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Kitsch Rieslingtext
88PTS

Kitsch Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe estate riesling is all clone 239, planted 2013 on gravel, sands and silts. It was whole cluster pressed and fermented in stainless, with no bâtonnage. Thought just 3 g/L RS, it comes across as lightly off-dry, with ripe pear, honey, cool quince stretched long across the sleek palate. There's an easily drinkability to this young wine, primed for cracking now.Prices:
BC$25.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Fort Berens Reserve Rieslingtext
89PTS

Fort Berens Reserve Riesling 2019

Lillooet, British Columbia, CanadaFrom a special block off their Lillooet Dry Creek Vineyard, this low-yield riesling was whole cluster pressed, fermented cold over 7 weeks in stainless, and aged in bottle for 18 months prior to release. The 18.9 g/L RS is well matched to a shining limey acidity, just off-dry with pear, white peach, clover honey, scented with white pepper and dried sage. Showing smartly now.Prices:
BC$27.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Moraine Rieslingtext
89PTS

Moraine Riesling 2020

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWinemaker Amber Pratt continues to fine tune the Moraine lineup, now spread across three estate-run vineyards: Sophia, Anastasia and Lily; along with some nearby purchased fruit. The riesling is all Naramata Bench, seemingly the perfect medium for exciting fresh wines that come with elegance and style. The riesling gets a brief cold soak to maximize flavour extraction. In 2020 it was all about green fruit, citrus, and apples with all the mineral floral notes you can handle. Clean, fresh, and ready to drink, a versatile food wine that enlivens almost any meal choice. It is also affordable.Prices:
BC$22.00750ml
Producer: Moraine Estate Winery
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Willm Riesling Réservetext
89PTS

Willm Riesling Réserve 2019

Alsace, FranceThis Réserve Riesling comes from mostly granite soils, and was fermented cool and slow in stainless, followed by 2-3 months aging on lees. This dry riesling is quite compact on the palate, with lime leaf, pear skin, lemon sherbet running the sleek frame. A smart, understated wine to enjoy with onion tart and / or white fish.Prices:
ON$19.95750ml
Producer: Willm
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Chronos Rieslingtext
86PTS

Chronos Riesling 2020

East Kelowna, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom East Kelowna's The View Vineyard, this riesling was whole bunch pressed, and stainless fermented in two tanks with two different yeasts, one left dry and the other halted with RS. They were then blended. Apricot, lime pith, white peach and lemon sherbet rule the tight, compact palate, finishing briefly with a citric tablet note on an off-dry finish. Drink now.Prices:
BC$27.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Kitsch Esther's Block Rieslingtext
90PTS

Kitsch Esther's Block Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaEsther's Block is a 2.4-acre parcel planted to clone 239 at Kitsch's home vineyard in East Kelowna. The block may be southwest facing, but you don't feel that warmth here. The story is all about the cool restraint that typifies East Kelowna. It's precise and pure, with bright lime, white florals, and chalk. It's lip-smackingly dry, and beautifully balanced, with 3 g/L of residual sugar that's easily washed away by the brisk, citrusy acidity. Good depth and concentration to the fruit.Prices:
BC$32.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Kitsch Rieslingtext
89PTS

Kitsch Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis riesling comes off Kitsch's estate in East Kelowna, where 2.5 acres are planted to clone 239. In 2020, these low-yielding, seven-year-old vines offer a zesty wine that combines punchy lime with crisp green apple. There's a real crystalline character to the fruit, with honey and delicate citrus blossoms adding complexity. It's linear and dry (3 g/L residual sugar), in a style that is racy but not austere. Line up the oysters.Prices:
BC$25.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Kitsch Esther's Block Rieslingtext
89PTS

Kitsch Esther's Block Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe driest of the Kitsch rieslings (2.8 grams per litre of residual sugar) the family says your children's children should enjoy it. The grapes, clone 239, are sustainably farmed in the southwest facing, clay rich, seven year old Kitsch family vineyard owned by matriarch Esther Kitsch. The first impression is a rush of apple juice with oxidation, which points to fermentation in neutral French puncheons three months on lees. The texture is fine, almost weighty, and works hard to offer a more complex picture to riesling lovers. Perhaps another two or three years in bottle will help this wine pull it all together. It will complement a wide array of food selections.Prices:
BC$32.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Kitsch Rieslingtext
88PTS

Kitsch Riesling 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Kitsch Riesling is sustainably farmed, and it walks the fine line between being too fruity or too acidic. The colour is a pale yellow, the nose a citrus pith and green apple affair. The palate is nervous with guava and lime and a subtle bitter undercurrent mixed with a salty finish. Very food-friendly, this will age effortlessly through 2027. The winery suggests you serve it with chickpea burgers.Prices:
BC$25.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Rippon Mature Vine Rieslingtext
92PTS

Rippon Mature Vine Riesling 2019

Central Otago, South Island, New ZealandIn 1975, Rolfe Mills, third generation on his family's Lake Wanaka farm in Central Otago, started to plant a series of experimental rows of Vitis vinifera. Together with his wife Lois they released their first commercial vintage in 1989. Today, Jo and her husband Nick Mills run their portion of the farm, around 150 acres, with Nick’s mother, Lois, while Nick’s cousins farm the other half. This older vine biodynamically farmed riesling is rooted in their estate's schist soils, which you can feel through the stony, savoury structure of this dry riesling. The sleek, slender body buzzes with minerality, and is gripped with phenolics, imparting lime pith and peel, pear skin, tangerine stretched across a medium bodied form. The finish lingers with salinity and trails off in an electric mineral vibrato. Striking, if shy, now in youth, this will reward with cellaring, and the Diam cork (no stelvin for NZ!) will ensure it has a solid future ahead.Prices:
BC$50.00750ml
Producer: Rippon Estate
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23 February 2022

Adamo Estate Winery Oaked Gamay Noir Reservetext
86PTS

Adamo Estate Winery Oaked Gamay Noir Reserve 2017

This gamay was planted at Huebel Grapes Estates in 1996, in the Four Mile Creek's clay loam soils. This Reserve has evident oak, with a darker potpourri perfume across the silken, yet tart palate. Rhubarb, cranberry, tart black raspberries lead the shorter palate, framed by sticky tannins to a pasty finish. Tasting tired now 5 years along, this needs a chill and a rustic root stew to match.Prices:
Producer: Adamo Estate Winery
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Adamo Oaked Gamay Noirtext
87PTS

Adamo Oaked Gamay Noir 2017

Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaThis gamay was planted at Huebel Grapes Estates in 1996, in the Four Mile Creek's clay loam soils. Very silken and perfumed, with potpourri, soft raspberries, mulberries on a shorter palate, with sticky / pasty tannins framing the outside. The wood is swallowed up by the plumed fruit. This is showing some age now, so best with a brisk chill and some saucy foods to mitigate.Prices:
Producer: Adamo Estate Winery
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Pelee Island Winery The Grey Fox Ruggles Runtext
83PTS

Pelee Island Winery The Grey Fox Ruggles Run 2017

Ontario, CanadaThis blend of gamay, zweigelt, syrah, and lemberger comes through with a strong foxy signature, courtesy of the lemberger. A short, pasty palate of plum, cherry is framed with sticky tannins. Tastes tired, and not like a charming gamay (blend) should do.Prices:
ON$13.45750ml
Producer: Pelee Island Winery
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Inniskillin Discovery Series Gamay Noirtext
87PTS

Inniskillin Discovery Series Gamay Noir 2020

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom an incredibly heavy bottle, this gamay comes from various vineyards across Niagara. After a warm ferment, this rested in new and older French barrels for 6 months, prior to a tightening stint in stainless before bottling. The wood is evident, with a dusting of baking spice and cedar seasoning baked cherry, ripe raspberry on a plumped palate. Sticky tannins pen in the side of this fuller, darker gamay, finishing with a pasty note. Best cracked now with pork / root veg stews.Prices:
ON$19.95750ml
Producer: Inniskillin Niagara
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Peller Estates Private Reserve Gamay Noirtext
86PTS

Peller Estates Private Reserve Gamay Noir 2020

Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom fruit off their estate Carlton Vineyard, as well as grower Huebel Vineyard. 60% of the wine was oak aged in older French barriques and puncheons for 9 months, while 40% was aged in an oak cask. The wood treatment is evident, with ample baking spices woven with baked plum and baked cherry. Tannins are pasty / sticky, taking this to a shorter finish. Drink this youthful wine now, with grilled burgers.Prices:
ON$21.75750ml
Producer: Andrew Peller Import Agency
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Henry of Pelham Estate Gamaytext
89PTS

Henry of Pelham Estate Gamay 2019

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaAfter a stainless ferment, this aged in a mix of French and American oak for 10 months. The wood is evident from first whiff of this darker hued gamay, with apple cedar spicing seasoning dark cherry, baked plum, black raspberry on a fuller, plump palate. Tannins are soft, and acidity is bright, easily balancing out the fruit. A smart choice for drinking now, especially with duck or saucy mushroom dishes.Prices:
ON$21.95750ml
Producer: Henry of Pelham
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Featherstone Gamay Noirtext
87PTS

Featherstone Gamay Noir 2020

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaThis Niagara Peninsula gamay was aged in American oak for 10 months prior to release. Ripe and round, with sweet cherry, plum, spiced raspberry, with perfumed potpourri scenting the finish. Tannins are very soft and sticky, and the palate is silken, with an easy lofted acidity making this a super friendly, easy gamay for cracking into now.Prices:
ON$17.95750ml
Producer: Featherstone
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Cave Spring Gamaytext
89PTS

Cave Spring Gamay 2019

Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaThis gamay comes from their Cave Spring Vineyard, on a limestone-clay sloping terrace overlooking Lake Ontario. After a month long maceration and native ferment, this aged 10 months in a mix of neutral 225L and 500L French, Hungarian, and American oak barrels. This lighter red is a spice box, with ample toasty baking spices infiltrating plum, cherry, tea, and tobacco. Tannins are long and fine, hugging the silken palate through the lingering finish. A charmer.Prices:
ON$16.95750ml
Producer: Cave Spring
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Tawse Cherry Avenue Vineyard Gamay Noirtext
90PTS

Tawse Cherry Avenue Vineyard Gamay Noir 2019

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom their Twenty Mile Bench estate Cherry Avenue Vineyard, planted in 2014, this is a perfumed, silken gamay with pretty plum, wild raspberry, mulberry across a streaming, medium body. Tannins are textured with tea leaves, and acidity is bright, easily coursing this to a white pepper laced finish. Quite smart, and well suited to pork tenderloin and wild mushroom risotto.Prices:
ON$29.95750ml
Producer: Tawse Winery
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13th Street Winery Maximum Intervention Gamaytext
86PTS

13th Street Winery Maximum Intervention Gamay 2020

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom Creek Shores' L. Viscek Vineyard, neighbouring the winery, this is a 50/50 blend of whole clusters and destemmed fruit, fermented in stainless without oxygen. After 4 weeks on skins, it was pressed into stainless for a 6 month rest, and bottling with a small amount of sulphur in June 2020. Quite primary, with grapey, plummy fruit covered with sticky, pasty tannins to a shorter, lightly peppered finish. Somewhat confusing: though the name is Maximum Intervention, this is a very natural wine.Prices:
ON$24.95750ml
Producer: 13th Street Winery
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13th Street Winery Sandstone Gamaytext
0PTS

13th Street Winery Sandstone Gamay 2019

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom their Creek Shores estate Whitty Vineyard, Sandstone is the winery's top gamay. This was destemmed and macerated for a month in stainless, before resting 14 months in French barrels, new and seasoned, of varying sizes. Sandstone is a barrel selection, blended, then bottled after a light fining and filtration. This bottle was corked. Will try another.Prices:
ON$34.95750ml
Producer: 13th Street Winery
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13th Street Winery Whitty Vineyard Gamaytext
88PTS

13th Street Winery Whitty Vineyard Gamay 2020

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom Creek Shores' Whitty Vineyard, this was destemmed and fermented in open top stainless, where it remained until it was lightly fined, filtered, and bottled in August 2021. Tight and sleek, with black cherry, spring raspberry running the medium bodied palate. There's ample peppery spicing, and bright acidity here, with long, lightly sticky tannins guiding this to a peppery finish.Prices:
ON$24.95750ml
Producer: 13th Street Winery
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13th Street Winery Gamaytext
88PTS

13th Street Winery Gamay 2019

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom select Niagara Peninsula vineyards, this gamay was destemmed and fermented in stainless, where it remained until bottling in June 2020. Tight and compact, with lightly smoked stones, early raspberries, tart cranberries on a brief, snappy palate, finishing with a raft of white peppercorns and sticky, fine tannins. Best cracked now, ideally with a light chill and some protein.Prices:
ON$19.95750ml
Producer: 13th Street Winery
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Trius Distinction Gamay Noirtext
88PTS

Trius Distinction Gamay Noir 2020

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom Trius' 2 estate vineyards, this was fermented in a mix of open topped wood fermenters and stainless, before aging in a mix of 60% large French casks and 40% in barrels, prior to the final blending and bottling. Dark cherry, dark plum is imbued with a faint smoky medicinal note, with bright lifted acidity and long lightly sticky tannins. The finish lingers with sarsaparilla and peppercorns. A smart choice for cracking now, with grilled meats and/or root veg.Prices:
ON$19.75750ml
Producer: Trius Winery at Hillebrand Estates
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Tawse Gamay Noirtext
89PTS

Tawse Gamay Noir 2019

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom fruit across Niagara, this aged for 6 months in French oak barrels. The lifted, cushy, medium weight palate carries cherry, plum, candle wax, and a dash of white pepper. Tannins are lightly grippy, and the finish lingers with warming cracked peppercorns. A welcoming, friendly gamay to crack now, ideally with grilled burgers.Prices:
ON$19.00750ml
Producer: Tawse
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Leaning Post Gamay - The Naturaltext
89PTS

Leaning Post Gamay - The Natural 2019

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaFrom Wismer - Armbrust Vineyard on the Twenty Mile Bench, this was native fermented in concrete, with nearly 4 weeks on skins before racking into clay amphora and neutral oak barrels for 10 months' rest. It went back into tank for 1 month of tightening before being bottled, with no additions or deletions throughout. Very earthy and branchy, with green tipped fruit amongst wild cherry, wild raspberry, light smoke. Tannins are long and lightly sticky, and acidity is tart, leading this medium bodied wine to a warming, yet saline finish. There's a lovely purity here. #GoGamayGo.Prices:
ON$30.00750ml
Producer: Leaning Post Wines
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Leaning Post Gamaytext
88PTS

Leaning Post Gamay 2019

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaThe Gamay comes off 3 vineyards on the Twenty Mile Bench, each picked and fermented separately in a mix of open top and concrete fermenters. After 3.5 weeks on skins, this was pressed into neutral oak barrique and puncheon for 10 months' aging, prior to blending and a stint in tank prior to bottling. This lighter red is quite earthy, with sapid branch, plum, tight raspberry, wet wood and white pepper spicing. Acidity is cranberry tart, and tannins are long and fine. Crack and enjoy with mushroom burgers / grilled root veg.Prices:
ON$25.00750ml
Producer: Leaning Post Wines
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Malivoire Courtney Gamaytext
90PTS

Malivoire Courtney Gamay 2019

Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaMalivoire is one of Canada's top gamay specialists, with numerous expressions and releases each vintage. From the Courtney block of their Beamsville Bench estate, this gamay was destemmed and crushed, fermented in large oak cuves. Post-ferment, this remained mostly in neutral barrels, with 7% headed to new oak for 10 months before being transferred to neutral wood. In total, the wine spent 16 months in wood before bottling in early 2021. The wood is noticable, though well integrated into the deeper plum, black cherry fruit. Lightly grippy cedar-hewn tannins bone this structural wine, taking it to a spiced, white pepper finish. A bigger gamay, as intended, and one to partner with roast pork / root veg dishes.Prices:
ON$29.95750ml
Producer: Malivoire
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Malivoire Le Coeur Gamaytext
92PTS

Malivoire Le Coeur Gamay 2020

Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaMalivoire is one of Canada's top gamay specialists, with numerous expressions and releases each vintage. Le Coeur comes off their home estate on the Beamsville Bench, and was native fermented whole cluster / semi-carbonically. Post ferment, this rested 6 months in neutral French puncheons before being bottled unfiltered. Floral and lifted, with ample wild flowers, peonies, wild plum, wild strawberry, tea leaves on a finessed, medium bodied palate. Acidity is bright, and tannins are long and lightly grippy, guiding this youthful wine to a saline, lightly warming finish. Quite impressive now, and with time ahead.Prices:
Producer: Malivoire
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Malivoire Wismer-Foxcroft Gamaytext
92PTS

Malivoire Wismer-Foxcroft Gamay 2020

Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaMalivoire is one of Canada's top gamay specialists, with numerous expressions and releases each vintage. From Twenty Mile Bench's legendary Wismer-Foxcroft vineyard, this was fermented 50/50 whole berry and destemmed, in alternating layers in stainless. Post ferment, this aged 6 months in neutral French barrels. Very perfumed and elegant, with layers of floral raspberry, black cherry, black plum, white pepper coursing through the medium bodied palate. Tannins are long and lightly grippy, well-balanced to the lifted tart acidity. This finishes with a lingering white pepper note. An excellent wine solo or with food now, and in future. Impressive.Prices:
ON$27.95750ml
Producer: Malivoire
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Malivoire Genova Gamaytext
91PTS

Malivoire Genova Gamay 2020

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaMalivoire is one of Canada's top gamay specialists, with numerous expressions and releases each vintage. From Vinemount Ridge's gravelly loam soils, this gamay was 2/3 destemmed and fermented in a concrete tank, with 1/3 whole cluster fruit layered in. Post ferment, this aged in neutral French barrels for 6 months. This elegant wine streams silken black cherry, perfumed plum, cracked pepper, branch along a gently expansive palate, with fine, long tannins framing through the peppery finish. Acidity is tight and bright throughout. Quite a smart, sophisticated showing, and worthy of duck and/or wild mushrooms.Prices:
ON$27.95750ml
Producer: Malivoire
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Malivoire Farmstead Gamaytext
88PTS

Malivoire Farmstead Gamay 2019

Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaMalivoire is one of Canada's top gamay specialists, with numerous expressions and releases each vintage. This cuvée blends fruit from Niagara-on-the-Lake and Twenty Mile Bench. The co-fermented fruit was primarily destemmed, with 20% whole clusters. It was fermented in stainless, before 1/3 was sent to neutral oak to rest 7 months, leaving the remainder behind in stainless. Sour cherry, wet wood, wild herbs, sarsaparilla fill a juicy, mouth-filling palate, framed with fine grained tannins, and finishing with a rush of rhubarb acidity and baking spices. A friendly, easy gamay for cracking into now.Prices:
ON$19.95750ml
Producer: Malivoire
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Malivoire Small Lot Gamaytext
89PTS

Malivoire Small Lot Gamay 2020

Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, CanadaMalivoire is one of Canada's top gamay specialists, with numerous expressions and releases each vintage. From grapes off their Malivoire Estate and Genova Vineyards, this gamay was 35% whole cluster / 65% destemmed, with fermentation in concrete tank, stainless, and oak barrel. Post-MLF, this was transferred to 70% neutral barrel, with the remainder in tank. The wine was blended 7 months later, in spring 2021. This fragrant, youthful gamay is bright and brisk with tight black cherry, forest berry, sapid branch, and fine white pepper. Acidity is lifted, and tannins are fine, long, and lightly sticky, leading this to a baking spiced finish.Prices:
ON$21.95750ml
Producer: Malivoire
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Jean-Paul Brun Terres Dorées l'Ancien Beaujolaistext
91PTS

Jean-Paul Brun Terres Dorées l'Ancien Beaujolais 2020

Beaujolais, Burgundy, FranceTerres Dorées is a limestone-laden area known as the "Region of the Golden Stones." Sustainably focused and non-interventionist in both the vineyard and winery, Brun is a firm advocate of minimal SO2, natural yeast, old vines and low yields. L'Ancien, from vines 50-80 years old, was destemmed and native fermented on skins for 4-6 weeks in concrete or neutral wood. Very fragrant, with wild cherry, juicy wild plum, dried roses, woven throughout pencil shavings, rasped stone, white pepper on the graceful palate. Tannins are long and lithe, and acidity is limestone lit, finishing with a shimmer. Drinking very smartly now, and with some time ahead.Prices:
BC$25.00750ml
Producer: Jean-Paul Brun
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Jean Max L’Ext’hasetext
91PTS

Jean Max L’Ext’hase 2020

Beaujolais, Burgundy, FranceFrom 70 year old gamay in southern Bojo's Charnay rooted its calcareous clay soils, this was carbonically macerated, with 7 months in oak, prior to a tightening moon phase rest in stainless, and bottling with low sulphur. Bright and charming, with wildflowers, wild cherry, peonies on a crunchy fresh palate, with fine, long tannins hugging in the sides, and a whisper of pink peppercorn on the finish. Lively and charming, much like the rabbit sketch on the label. These are made in the cellar of Eric Texier in the Rhône, hence they are labelled as Vin de France. 3280 bottles.Prices:
ON$40.00750ml
Producer: Maxime Barrot
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22 February 2022

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Queen Taken Chardonnay Dekleva Vineyardtext
94PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Queen Taken Chardonnay Dekleva Vineyard 2019

Golden Mile Bench, Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaIn a recent vertical tasting from 2013 – 2017, I noted Queen Taken was becoming a leaner, more exciting chardonnay, and lower alcohol was increasing its freshness factor. The latest offering is full of aromatic notes, courtesy of the unknown Dekleva clone, and a significant influx of the old Wente clone that made its debut last year. In 2019 the Wente clone had become a serious component adding more minerality and lift, improving the complexity and taking the label up another notch. This wine has mineral restraint and is expressive at the same time. The palate showcases limey stone fruits with a rich, savoury, tense undercurrent. There were 16 barrels made, and it was wild fermented and barrel aged in French oak (49% new) for 16 months. Dekleva Vineyard is a single block wine located southwest of the town of Oliver, beneath Mt. Kobau and the Thompson Plateau on the Golden Mile Bench. It is predominantly gravelly and coarse Stemwinder, Ponderosa, and Ratnip soils: rubble originating from the mountain above's fluvial fan deposits. Its exposition welcomes a very early and warming sunrise. At the same time, it protects the fruit from baking in the late day thanks to the shadow of Mount Kobau.Prices:
BC$125.00750ml
BC$280.001500ml
BC$680.003000ml
BC$1425.00750ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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CheckMate Artisanal Winery Capture Chardonnay Border Vista Vineyardtext
93PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Capture Chardonnay Border Vista Vineyard 2019

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaBorder Vista Vineyard sits on the warmest and most challenging site that Checkmate farms: East Osoyoos Bench, a stone’s throw from the U.S. border. The single block, 2C, contains just under 30 year old Dijon Clone 76 vines planted over complex, low-nutrient, sandy soils. The fermentation is native, and it is all done in water bent French oak barrels, including 45 percent new. The wine spends 16 months in oak, but you would hardly know it. It surprises with freshness, similar to its neighbour Mission Hill Perpetua which takes fruit from a nearby block. Regular lees stirring has added a lovely mid-weight palate before the elegance kicks in, aided by only 13.8 percent alcohol. Look for green apples, pear, tangerine, salinity. A perfect seafood wine and the best yet for this label. Production is less than 300 cases.Prices:
BC$95.00750ml
BC$200.001500ml
BC$485.003000ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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CheckMate Artisanal Winery Knight's Challenge Chardonnay Sunset Vineyardtext
92PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Knight's Challenge Chardonnay Sunset Vineyard 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaKnight’s Challenge is all about texture, according to winemaker Phil McGahan. It comes off Sunset Vineyard on the Black Sage Bench and remains a wine where elevation changes and east/west row orientations affect the wine's disposition more than its 28-year-old Dijon clones (76 and 95). Two distinct blocks go into the wine, allowing for separate pick dates to maintain its inviting balance of power and acidity. The move to organic viticulture continues to lower the alcohol, now resting at 13.7 percent, leaving the wine a lovely fresh demeanour in the glass. The aromas are an enticing mix of sagebrush garrigue and sea salt, with pear, honey, lime, and mineral notes. Well donePrices:
BC$95.00750ml
BC$200.001500ml
BC$485.003000ml
BC$985.006000ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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CheckMate Artisanal Winery Fool's Mate Chardonnaytext
93PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Fool's Mate Chardonnay 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaTime has taught us the Fool's Mate ageing window is now in the 7-10 year range, and 2019 will fit right into that box. Fool's Mate is also the only Chardonnay that is a blend of sites, grabbing fruit from Jagged Rock Vineyard, Black Sage Bench 42%, Sunset Vineyard, Black Sage Bench 34%, Dekleva Vineyard, Golden Mile Bench-DVA 16%, Border Vista Vineyard, Osoyoos East Bench 5% and Combret Vineyard, Golden Mile Bench-DVA 3%. In ’19, the clonal mix expanded to Dijon 76, Dijon 95, Old Wente, Dekleva and Combret. The complexity comes in many shades, and in this case, mixed sites and clones bring mystery to this wine. About 60 percent of the organically grown fruit, certified in 2021, is wild fermented, while the ageing over 16 months takes place in 29 barrels (42 percent new) and a single concrete egg. The nose is a mix of peaches and pears with a citrus, wet stone undercurrent. The flavours are more pear and nectarine and highly polished this year. It is less reductive and sports a marine sea salt finish. Impressive at 13.6 percent alcohol.Prices:
BC$95.00750ml
BC$200.001500ml
BC$485.003000ml
BC$985.006000ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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CheckMate Artisanal Winery Queen's Advantage Chardonnay Combret Vineyardtext
92PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Queen's Advantage Chardonnay Combret Vineyard 2019

Golden Mile Bench, Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Queen's Advantage nods to the unknown clone inhabiting Combret Vineyard, the winery's single estate plot, now considered among the country's oldest, most traditional chardonnay vines. It was planted in 1973, the gnarly old vines deeply rooted in the Golden Mile Bench's calcium-carbonate coated stones on the hillside site. The vineyard, lovingly restored via precision agriculture, sits at 1266-1319 feet. The ferment is 70 percent wild in 50 percent new French oak, and aged 16 months in barrel. With time, the vines have returned to their own, offering more intense tropical fruit, spiced with ginger and wet stone. The QA is all about freshness and persistence now, in short, taking advantage of the older vines and what little yields they give, especially under the new irrigation regime. A richness here suggests crab or lobster dishes would be a good match.Prices:
BC$95.00750ml
BC$200.001500ml
BC$485.003000ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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CheckMate Artisanal Winery Little Pawn Chardonnay Jagged Rock Vineyardtext
94PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Little Pawn Chardonnay Jagged Rock Vineyard 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaLittle Pawn opens with a nutty reductive style making it one of the most intriguing Checkmate labels from the beginning. Jagged Rock Vineyard on the Black Sage Bench is the home of the fruit that is 88 percent fermented wild and entirely barrel aged in 50 percent new French oak for 16 months. Dijon 76, with its abundant stone fruit flavours, makes up 55 to 57 percent of the blend, while on the sands of the Black Sage Bench, the Dekleva clone takes on more licorice and black sage, adding complexity to the mix. 2019 was an excellent growing season, with the chardonnay unaffected by the October freeze. Year two of the organics continues to see the alcohol drop. Little Pawn came in at 13.9 percent alcohol by volume in 2019. Changing viticulture and irrigation techniques have further reduced the crop, intensifying a mix of peach, floral, rose, green tea, dusted in fennel and sea salt. Impressive, and shedding any clumsy New World notes for much-appreciated freshness and elegance.Prices:
BC$110.00750ml
BC$250.001500ml
BC$620.003000ml
BC$1300.00750ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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CheckMate Artisanal Winery Attack Chardonnaytext
94PTS

CheckMate Artisanal Winery Attack Chardonnay 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaAt the top of the heap, most every year, Attack is a co-ferment of Dijon clones and the Dekleva clone from Jagged Rock on the Black Sage Bench near Oliver and Border Vista Vineyard on the Osoyoos East Bench. 2019 was fermented and aged just under 500 days in two French oak foudres reducing the new oak with a positive effect to 50 percent. The foudres have set this Chardonnay free. When you add the change to organic growing, there is a freshness and lift along with a characteristic sea salt aroma and flavours throughout that underpin pear and mandarin notes, all at a comfortable 13.8 percent alcohol. Finally, a light reductive note and a dash of minerality tighten up the wine and keep its pure fruited chardonnay flavours in check — an impressively reliable next world chardonnay.Prices:
BC$115.00750ml
BC$260.001500ml
BC$640.003000ml
BC$1330.006000ml
Producer: CheckMate Artisanal Winery
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21 February 2022

Serge Dagueneau & Filles Pouilly Fumé Traditiontext
91PTS

Serge Dagueneau & Filles Pouilly Fumé Tradition 2020

Pouilly-Fume, Upper Loire, Loire, FranceThis branch of the Dagueneau family, headed by father Serge, is based in Saint Andelain and owns 19 hectares of old vineyards across several of the prime sites of the Pouilly Fumé appellation, including three hectares in the nearby appellation of Cotes de la Charite. Today the estate is run by Serge's daughter Valerie, cousin of the late Didier Dagueneau, with help in the vineyard from Serge. The flagship wine blends various blocks of sauvignon blanc on calcareous clay soils to provide a snapshot of their site. After pressing, this spent a few months on lees until January when it was fined and then bottled in the spring. Tight lemon blossoms, lemon peel, verbena, green apple, crunchy pear are carved by stones and threaded with limestone energy in this young wine. There's a well-placed lees pad to offset the tension, making this a charmer for enjoying now.Prices:
ON$37.95750ml
Producer: Serge Dagueneau et Filles
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Clos du Soleil Capellatext
90PTS

Clos du Soleil Capella 2020

British Columbia, CanadaCapella is the Clos du Soleil flagship white, although it strays out of the Similkameen to add some fruit from Oliver in 2020. The blend is a 77/33 sauvignon blanc / sémillon. The nose opens with an intense lemon and herbaceous Kiwi style nose that spills onto the vibrantly fresh, skinny palate full of green apple and pear dusted in juicy grapefruit pith. An excellent underlying leesy, mineral Similkameen character closes out this perfect white wine. No rush to drink this one with your favourite shellfish dish.Prices:
BC$29.90750ml
Producer: Clos du Soleil Winery
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18 February 2022

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Rosé in Cantext
86PTS

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Rosé in Can NV

Rheingau, GermanyThe Rosé sparkler is a blend of merlot, portugieser, pinot noir, made with the same grapes used in the still pinot noir. It is fully fermented de-alcoholized through a low-temperature vacuum distillation process. Like the entire lineup, the wine opens fresh and fragrant with a modicum of mousse, and a light strawberries/raspberry flavoured sprinkled with grapefruit highlights and a mineral undercurrent. The bubbles tend to balance the residual sugar leaving the finish off-dry and relatively long for non-alcoholic wine, and it's clean. Available in bottle and can.Prices:
BC$0.00250ml
Producer: Leitz
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Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Rieslingtext
86PTS

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Riesling NV

Rheingau, GermanyOne of Germany’s top riesling producers, Johannes Leitz, has brought his considerable expertise to non-alcoholic wines. Riesling is the flagship grape of Leitz, and he employs his youngest vines to create a fresh, light and bright sparkler with a clean fruity style. It’s the perfect mix of juicy, crisp green apple fruit drizzled in citrus and a reasonably small if light, mousse. Hard to find anything to complain about with this offering if no alcohol is in the equation. We have a variety of fresh shellfish on the west coast that would be suitable matches here. Available in bottle and nifty 200 ml cans for the beach or hiking.Prices:
BC$12.45750ml
Producer: Leitz
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Leitz Zero Point Five Non-Alcoholic Pinot Noirtext
86PTS

Leitz Zero Point Five Non-Alcoholic Pinot Noir NV

Rheingau, GermanyWinemaker Johannes Leitz first bottled Eins Zwei Zero back in 2007. It was prompted by Norwegian chef Odd Ivar Solvold, who needed an excellent non-alcoholic wine to match his cuisine. As a result, the Leitz lineup is aimed at a sector that desires a product made with the same grapes and passion that go into its fully fermented alcohol-based wines. In the case of the pinot noir, the colour is dark-ish, the flavours are light but in concert with a trademark juicy palate of cherry and berry. The finish is short by pinot standards, but it's a reasonable effort.Prices:
CDN$15.00750ml
Producer: Leitz
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Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Rieslingtext
87PTS

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Riesling NV

Rheingau, GermanyJohannes Leitz is considered one of the top growers in Germany. Riesling is the flagship grape of Leitz, and he has brought his expertise and young vines to this non-alcoholic version. It’s fresh and bright and full of lime, green apples and, dare I say, a hint of minerality. He created the ‘Eins Zwei Zero’ label to offer the best quality wines possible for those who don’t want to consume alcohol, and this bottle is a winner. The finish is off-dry, leaving it a fun summer sipper or something you could serve with spicy bites. It is also suited to adding to cocktails or mocktails. In addition, it is sustainably grown and vegan.Prices:
CDN$15.00750ml
Producer: Leitz
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Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Rosétext
87PTS

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Rosé NV

Rheingau, GermanyBooze-free rosé makes sense for mid-day drinkers and beachgoers, though quality booze-free rosé is a dream. But, as we are learning, the folks at Leitz have got this genre dialled and are quickly convincing me there is life after alcohol when it comes to wine. Strawberry, grapefruit, apple, and slightly tart flavours mark this wine, along with a genuinely easy-sipping style where the bright acidity works to lessen the residual sugar effect, especially in the finish. Light and airy, it is a fine introduction to non-alcohol rosé. Think light summer salads, simple pasta, or chicken dishes. The blend is merlot, portugieser, and pinot noir.Prices:
CDN$15.99750ml
Producer: Leitz
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Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Rosétext
86PTS

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Rosé NV

Rheingau, GermanyThe rosé sparkler is a blend of merlot, portugieser, pinot noir, made with the same grapes used in the still pinot noir. It is fully fermented and de-alcoholized through a low-temperature vacuum distillation process. Like the entire lineup, the wine opens fresh and fragrant with a modicum of mousse, and light strawberries, raspberry with grapefruit highlights and a mineral undercurrent. The bubbles tend to balance the residual sugar, leaving the finish off-dry and relatively long for non-alcoholic wine. And it's clean. Available in bottle and can.Prices:
BC$0.00250ml
Producer: Leitz
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Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Riesling in Cantext
86PTS

Leitz 'Eins Zwei Zero' Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Riesling in Can NV

Rheingau, GermanyOne of Germany’s top riesling producers, Johannes Leitz, has brought his considerable expertise to non-alcoholic wines. Riesling is the flagship grape of Leitz, and he employs his youngest vines to create a fresh, light and bright sparkler with a clean fruity style. It’s the perfect mix of juicy, crisp green apple drizzled in citrus and a reasonably light, mousse. Hard to find anything to complain about with this offering if no alcohol is in the equation. A variety of fresh shellfish on the west coast would be suitable matches here. Available in bottle and nifty 200 ml cans for the beach or hike.Prices:
BC$3.45250ml
Producer: Leitz
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16 February 2022

De Martino Viejas Tinajas Cinsaulttext
93PTS

De Martino Viejas Tinajas Cinsault 2020

Itata Valley, ChileThis wine really launched De Martino, and Itata, on the world wine map when the first vintage in 2011 was released. They found used and abandoned tinajas, handmade clay jars of varying shapes and sizes, while driving through vineyards in southern Chile, and decided to try these for making wine, as their ancestors did. They have approximately 150 of these vessels in their care, averaging 150 years each. This Cinsault comes from a single vineyard in coastal Itata's granite and quartz soils, planted in 1982, own-rooted and dry-farmed. Bunches are destemmed and the whole berries are put into the tinajas for semi-carbonic native fermentation. The free run and pressed wine are blended for a winter stint in the vessels, bottled in late spring without fining or filtration. So perfumed, with layers of wild plum, peony, iris, boysenberry, wild blueberry, thorns, and tea leaves across a fine, slender, saline palate. Long, lean tannins frame this textural, graceful red, leaving a wake of finely rasped pink peppercorns. Such a gem, drinking beautifully now, and with time ahead.Prices:
BC$55.00750ml
Producer: De Martino
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Abbazia di Novacella Schiavatext
91PTS

Abbazia di Novacella Schiava 2020

Trentino- Alto-Adige, ItalyAbbazia is a monastery founded in 1142 by the Augustinian Order of Canons Regular in the Isarco River Valley and its slopes of granitic schist. They produce wine from their estate vineyards (mainly white grapes), complemented by neighbouring growers, like this schiava, for a total of 80 hectares. Schiava (aka Trollinger, or Vernatsch, or Traminer) is a red German/Italian variety that was likely first originally cultivated here, and has several clones. This schiava is wild and thorny, with ample dried florals, dried herbs and wild orange peel threaded through black cherry, black plum, white pepper on the medium bodied palate. Acidity is mountainous lofted, and tannins are fine yet firm, bracketing this to the lifted, floral finish. Quite unique, and alluring. Try with herbed wild mushrooms and/or rosemary grilled ribeye.Prices:
BC$30.00750ml
Producer: Abbazia di Novacella
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Domaine Vendange Mondeuse Le Coztext
89PTS

Domaine Vendange Mondeuse Le Coz 2018

Savoie, FranceLocated in Combe de Savoie, on the foothills of the Massif des Bauges, Domaine Vendange stretches over 10 organically farmed hectares, on south facing slopes of youthful glacial till / limestone scree. The Vendange family has been involved with the viticulture and agronomic industries for many years, and are one of the largest vine nurseries in the region. After studying viticulture and oenology in Beaune, Benjamin Vendange returned in 2015 to the family property. With his partner Diane Gounel, oenologist from Languedoc-Roussillon, the step was taken to start their own estate with the family’s holdings. From 20 year old vines, this mondeuse was destemmed and with 10 days on skins, native fermented in stainless prior to heading to a 50/50 mix of stainless and older barrels for 1 year's rest. After a puff of reduction blows off, this slight (11.5%) mountainous red shows saline laced red cherry, pomegranate, wild plum, framed with finely furry tannins. Acidity is lofted, easily carrying this to a sticky, saline finish. Best with a slight chill, and some sauced wild mushrooms / pork tenderloin to match.Prices:
BC$30.00750ml
BC$28.49750ml
Producer: Domaine Earl Vendange & Fils
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Bossanova Montepulciano d'Abruzzotext
87PTS

Bossanova Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2020

Abruzzo, ItalyBossanova is a biodynamic, natural project started between 2 friends in 2018. They're in Abruzzo, bordering Marche, next to the hill of Piceno, on the Adriatic coast. Their vines were planted in 1970. This was 70% skin fermented, 20% foot-trodden, 10% cerasuolo. Native fermented in concrete over 10 days, before resting there 8 months. This opens with a swing of reduction that persists through the slight, downy / sticky palate, with scrubby thorns, black cherry, and soft spice. Tannins stick around the sides through the warming, balsamic-laced finish. Needs a brisk chill and a hearty bowl to accompany.Prices:
Italy$30.00750ml
Producer: Bossanova
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Gricos Grifalco Aglianico del Vulturetext
88PTS

Gricos Grifalco Aglianico del Vulture 2018

Basilicata, ItalyAfter over 20 years of making wine in Tuscany, Fabrizio and Cecilia Piccin went in search of a new winery and settled in Basilicata, home of the Vulture volcano and the most distinct Aglianico in Italy. They established Grifalco winery in 2004, and today their sons Lorenzo and Andrea are at the helm now, overseeing their 16 hectares of organic hillside vineyards, between 450-580m. Grifalco is the flagship of the estate, sourcing grapes from all four estate vineyards. It is from vines 10 to 30 years old, and was fermented in stainless before aging in seasoned French and American oak for 6 to 12 months. This slight red rings with volcanic soils, imbuing a buzzy electricity to the wild plum, crunchy cherry, iron-dusted tannins. Acidity is rhubarb tart, and fruit has a slight fade on the finish, encouraging cracking and drinking now.Prices:
Producer: Gricos
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Basilisco Teodosio Aglianico del Vulturetext
89PTS

Basilisco Teodosio Aglianico del Vulture 2018

Basilicata, ItalyBasilisco began in the early 1990s, and was taken over in 2011 by Feudi di San Gregorio, already present in Vulture for a decade by that time. The winery decided to start a project to reclaim the ancient tuff stone caves in the area. This aglianico comes off younger (20 year old) organically farmed vines rooted in the volcanic soils Romano, Fontanelle, Vigne di Mezzo, and Macarico, at 500m. This was fermented in stainless over one month, before a year in French oak and 1 more in bottle prior to release. The volcanic soils are evident in the lift and brightness of this medium+ red, as is the aglianico grape itself, through fragrant plum blossoms, iris, wild blueberry, cassis, and white pepper. Tannins are long and sticky, hugging this through the saline finish. Nice purity and typicity here, especially considering the price.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Basilisco
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14 February 2022

Pearce Predhomme Première Cuvée Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

Pearce Predhomme Première Cuvée Pinot Noir 2019

Willamette Valley, Oregon, United StatesPearce Predhomme Chenin Blanc is a global (oft virtual) partnership between Ontario négociants Will Predhomme and Nicholas Pearce. In this wine, they have partnered with Northwest Wine Co to produce a pinot noir, sourced from Yamhill Carlton's sedimentary / volcanic soils. Soft and dark fruited, with perfumed lavender and candied violets infusing cushy black plum, morello cherry, crushed baking spices. Tannins are long and sticky, and acidity is lofted, easily stretching this medium bodied red through the spiced finish. This unique pinot is best taken now, with roast pork and / or hearty mushroom dishes.Prices:
ON$29.95750ml
Producer: Pearce Predhomme
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Les Pinots Blacks Irancytext
90PTS

Les Pinots Blacks Irancy 2019

Burgundy, FranceLes Pinots Blacks is a collaboration between four friends: the Chablisiene restaurateur Fabien Espana; winemaker Thomas Pico from Domaine Pattes Loup in Chablis; Damien Delecheneau from Domaine de La Grange Tiphaine in Loire; and Bruno Verret from Domaine Verret in Irancy. The project was born from a common dream: to vinify Pinot Noir together, since neither Thomas Pico nor Damien Delecheneau use the grape. With one hectare of organically grown Pinot Noir supplied by Bruno Verret, they highlight the little-known terroir of Irancy, neighbouring Chablis. This pinot noir comes from a massale selection, with a mix of whole clusters and destemmed berries. Post native ferment, it aged in concrete and used barrel. The whole cluster is readily apparent right up, with a lifted forrest floor, herbal berry note that brightens the tart cherry, spring raspberry, fragrant, sapid plum that cores the bright palate. Acidity is crunchy, and tannins are long and whisper fine, guiding this to a shimmering limestone and saline laced finish. Irancy is such a special appellation, and this charmer will show you why. Take with a light chill.Prices:
BC$55.00750ml
Producer: Les Pinots Blacks
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11 February 2022

Kitsch 5 Barrel Pinot Noirtext
91PTS

Kitsch 5 Barrel Pinot Noir 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis single vineyard pinot was destemmed with 25 days on skins before resting in French oak (60% new) for 8 months. As the name suggests, this is a 5 barrel selection. This is a step up in cohesion over their estate pinot, with a dark fruited core of sultry plum, wild blackberry, black cherry, dark cocoa held with a silken glove of tannins, finishing with a dusting of perfumed violets and baking spice. Acidity is vibrant throughout, insisting this fleshy pinot is matched with roast duck and/or wild mushrooms. 125 cases.Prices:
BC$69.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Kitsch Pinot Noirtext
89PTS

Kitsch Pinot Noir 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaOff their East Kelowna vineyard and its stony gravels, this pinot was destemmed, with 22 days on skins before resting in French oak (15% new). Dark fruited, with sultry plums, morello cherries, whiffs of minty pine, and fruitcake spicing, this fleshy pinot finishes bright, thanks to a pop of acidity. Well suited to duck or autumnal mushroom stews.Prices:
BC$40.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Fort Berens Pinot Noirtext
88PTS

Fort Berens Pinot Noir 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWith fruit from Naramata's Flaherty Vineyard, this was aged in mostly neutral French barrels for 9 months, followed by 1 year's rest in bottle prior to release. Soft and round, with baked cherry, plum, dusted with cocoa. Tannins are supple, hugging this to a lightly warming finish. Take this approachable pinot noir now, with sauced pork or mushroom dishes.Prices:
BC$29.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Meyer Family Vineyards Pinot Noir Old Block McLean Creek Vineyardtext
92PTS

Meyer Family Vineyards Pinot Noir Old Block McLean Creek Vineyard 2020

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Old Block is one of the original Meyer Vineyard plantings. It dates to 1994 and is part of the largest block (1 acre) of pinot noir at McLean Creek Road. The unknown clone has a steep southerly aspect, capturing the full range of the sun, and it shows in the power and length of this pinot even at a modest 13.5 percent alcohol. Winemaker Chris Carson practices sustainable /organic viticulture, but nothing is certified. The berries are gently destemmed via gravity into small open-top fermenters. After a cold soak, the fermentation begins naturally, with the temperature peaking at 30 C. The must is hand plunged throughout and post maceration. The wine ages in French oak barrels (33% new) for 11 months. The attack is vibrant and savoury with plenty of wild dark fruit that spills across the palate, finishing with a silky, long peppery note. Impressive and just beginning to show its stuff. Drink or hold; either way, you will not be disappointed.Prices:
BC$44.44750ml
Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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Moraine Pinot Noirtext
89PTS

Moraine Pinot Noir 2020

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Moraine Pinot comes off the home estate Sophia Vineyard on the Naramata Bench, the unofficial sweet spot of the Okanagan Valley. It is clone 777 carefully made from hand harvesting and a whole berry fermentation. Look for fresh, lively, red-fruited, Rainier cherry flecked with floral rose petals and violet, with a brushing of toasted oak. The classic pairing is duck confit, but tuna or salmon work too — a lovely wine for mid-term drinking.Prices:
BC$27.00750ml
Producer: Moraine Estate Winery
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Meyer Family Vineyards Pinot Noir Old Block McLean Creek Vineyardtext
90PTS

Meyer Family Vineyards Pinot Noir Old Block McLean Creek Vineyard 2020

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom one of the original vineyard plantings at their Okanagan Falls estate McLean Creek Road Vineyard, this was planted in 1994 to an unknown clone on a steep, southern-facing slope. The organically / sustainably farmed fruit was destemmed and cold soaked before a native ferment and transfer to French barrels (33% new) for 11 months, before the wine was bottled unfined and unfiltered. The power of the old vines and the excellent 2020 vintage is well matched by the wood treatment this year, with savoury wild plum, cassis, black cherry, framed with lightly toasted cedar, cola, and cracked pink pepper. Tannins are still wood led at this young age, but it will continue to meld with the darker fruit in short order.Prices:
BC$44.44750ml
Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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Kitsch 5 Barrel Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

Kitsch 5 Barrel Pinot Noir 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom a single North Okanagan vineyard, 5 Barrel is aged for eight months in several French oak barrels, of which 60 percent were new. The best five barrels make the cut and lead to a fresh, aromatic nose that backs off the heavier styling of the past. The palate is well- knit and balanced at only 13.3 percent alcohol, leaving the black cherry, dark plum vibrant and silky as it feeds into a long soft spicy finish. Another star from the North Okanagan that is only coming into its own when it comes to pinot noir. Try this with pork, salmon, and mushroom dishes.Prices:
BC$69.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Kitsch Pinot Noirtext
89PTS

Kitsch Pinot Noir 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaTilted to the more decadent New World style, the pinot comes with soft, round black cherry with a squeeze of black raspberry and spicy Christmas cake. All East Kelowna fruit comes in at a snappy 13 percent alcohol and only 15 percent new oak. Crispy Peking duck pancakes caught my interest as a perfect match. Fun to drink.Prices:
BC$40.00750ml
Producer: Kitsch Wines
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Fort Berens Pinot Noir Reservetext
88PTS

Fort Berens Pinot Noir Reserve 2018

Lillooet, British Columbia, CanadaIt is year two for the all-Lillooet, Dry Creek Vineyard pinot, made from two clones. It is whole cluster fermented on native yeast, before nine months of ageing in French oak barrels, and 24 more months bottle rest. The style is cool and cedary with rhubarb, cherry and an earthy branchy undercurrent. Best now with barbecue pork. A ground-breaking effort from a pioneering winery. It will be interesting to follow the journey of Lillooet pinot noir as the vines and the winemaking mature.Prices:
BC$36.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Fort Berens Pinot Noirtext
87PTS

Fort Berens Pinot Noir 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFlaherty Vineyard in Naramata is home to the pinot noir fruit that walks the sour cherry, plum, cedar, savoury line. It was aged in mainly neutral oak barrels for nine months before spending another year in the bottle. The palate is fresh, the tannins soft, with a balsamic twist in the finish. Ready to drink. Think roasted chicken or mushroom-based dishes.Prices:
BC$29.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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10 February 2022

Calliope Figure 8 Redtext
85PTS

Calliope Figure 8 Red 2019

British Columbia, CanadaThis year's Figure 8 is a blend of merlot, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, syrah, with a tip of petit verdot and malbec to perfume. The fruit comes off Osoyoos and Oliver vineyards, and was fermented in tank before resting in oak barrels to finish MLF and rest 9 months. This is somewhat disjointed, with a sweet and sour / ripe fruit and bitter sourness, wrapped with amply toasted wood, and finishing off with an astringent earthy twinge, alongside a puff of heat. Definitely needs a big stew to mitigate.Prices:
BC$19.98750ml
AB$16.00750ml
MB$26.00750ml
Producer: Calliope Wines
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Mayhem Cabernet Merlottext
88PTS

Mayhem Cabernet Merlot 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom 3 southern Okanagan vineyards, this 2020 blends 89% merlot with 11% cabernet franc. Both were destemmed and fermented in stainless, before resting for 5 months in French barrels (2nd use) before the blend. Once united, the wine rested an additional 6 months in barrel. It was bottled unfined and unfiltered. Soft black cherry, dusky blackberry is lit with an easy tart acidity, and framed with lightly furry tannins. This youthful wine will benefit from food now.Prices:
BC$21.74750ml
Producer: Mayhem Wines Inc.
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Mayhem Cabernet Merlottext
88PTS

Mayhem Cabernet Merlot 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis blend of 72% merlot and 28% cabernet franc came off the home Anarchist Vineyard in Osoyoos, as well as Naramata's Tebutt Vineyard. It was fermented seperately in stainless (merlot destemmed, and franc whole berry) before aging in French oak (40% new) for 11 months. It was bottled unfined and unfiltered. Dusky blackberry, plum, black cherry fill an earthy, savoury palate, seasoned with toasted cedar and finishing with a swell of warmth. Tannins are soft up front and astringent on the rear, and acidity is bright, all encouraging cracking now.Prices:
BC$21.74750ml
Producer: Mayhem Wines Inc.
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Calliope Figure 8 Redtext
86PTS

Calliope Figure 8 Red 2019

British Columbia, CanadaThe palate is juicy with spicy black cherry, dark chocolate, with a fresh finish. It is very BC in style and well suited to a range of meat and chicken dishes or heartier vegetarian choices. Fresher than you might expect, 2019 is all handpicked from Osoyoos and Oliver vineyards. Post tank ferment, the juice was transferred to oak barrels to go through the malolactic fermentation and then to primarily three year old French oak barrels for nine months before blending and bottling.Prices:
BC$19.98750ml
AB$16.00750ml
MB$26.00750ml
Producer: Calliope Wines
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Mayhem Cabernet Merlottext
88PTS

Mayhem Cabernet Merlot 2020

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaA superior vintage has left its mark on this red blend that in 2020 comes off three south Okanagan vineyards, mixing 89 percent merlot with 11 percent cabernet franc. The varieties were kept apart for five months in second use barrels before coming together for six more months in barrel. The tone is slightly softer, the fruit marginally riper than 2019 with medium-intense blackberry and blueberry that finish with a spicy, branchy, savoury note. Simple, well made red wine will improve over the next three years in bottle, or you can now serve it with a salumi charcuterie plate or a meaty pizza.Prices:
BC$21.74750ml
Producer: Mayhem Wines Inc.
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Mayhem Cabernet Merlottext
87PTS

Mayhem Cabernet Merlot 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2019 blend is a 72/28 merlot/cabernet franc mix that comes off Naramata's Tebutt Vineyard and the Anarchist Vineyard in Osoyoos. The treatments vary, with merlot destemmed and cabernet franc whole berry as they head into the fermenter. All the ageing is in French oak (40% new) for eleven months. The colour is medium dark, the nose a blueberry, plum and black cherry affair dusted in savoury sagebrush and earthy cedar before a drying finish. Rare-ish meat dishes are the ticket here.Prices:
BC$21.74750ml
Producer: Mayhem Wines Inc.
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Plot Wines Neighbourtext
89PTS

Plot Wines Neighbour 2018

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaPlot Wines is a new friendly and funky wine collab based out of Kaleden. Their name refers to the partners' (Kevin Rossion and Adam Kereliuk) practice of sourcing grapes from different plots of land across the Okanagan Valley, making an ever changing roster of minimal intervention wines. Neighbour blends Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Tempranillo from 5 different southern Okanagan sites. Each was native fermented separately and rested for 18 months in a mix of Hungarian and French barrels before the final blend. Alluring dark florals pervade this suave blend, scenting cassis, black cherry, wild plum across a full, yet fresh, palate. Tannins are well integrated into the fruit, drawing this to a lightly peppered finish. There's a lovely balance to this interesting blend, drinking smartly now (no smoke taint here), but with time ahead. A great first introduction to Plot Wines, and one to watch.Prices:
BC$35.00750ml
Producer: Plot Wines
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Fort Berens Meritagetext
88PTS

Fort Berens Meritage 2019

British Columbia, CanadaThis year's Meritage blends 88% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 1% Cabernet Franc, each fermented and aged separately for 15 months in a mix of seasoned French and American oak barrels prior to the blend. Juicy black cherry, cassis, toasted coconut, tobacco, dark cocoa rule the firm palate, framed with rustic-hewn tannins through to the spiced finish. Roasted beef and root veg will suit.Prices:
BC$27.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Painted Rock Red Icontext
93PTS

Painted Rock Red Icon 2019

Skaha Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis wine has blossomed in recent years, shedding prominent oak and packing on intensity and power with a nod toward elegance. The fruit is dark and powerful with a lot of spice that can be unnerving early on, but it dissipates as you work your way into the wine, and long term, it repays patience in the bottle as it gets some age. It should be at its peak closer to 2030. A cool year is never a bad thing in south-central B.C. if your viticulture is up to snuff, which describes the work done at Painted Rock. The property yielded the lowest crop per hectare since 2012 but, unlike many, managed to avoid the devasting October frosts thanks to its excellent air drainage and hung crop well into the end of October. Classic Bordeaux wine growing led by Alain Sutre with winemaker Gabriel Reis has the wine aged 18 months in 30% new French oak mixing 42/19/15/14/10 merlot, cabernet franc, petit verdot, malbec, and cabernet sauvignon.Prices:
BC$79.99750ml
Producer: Painted Rock Estate Winery
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Chateau Haut-Baillytext
98PTS

Chateau Haut-Bailly 2018

Pessac-Léognan, Graves, Bordeaux, FranceHaut-Bailly is an ancient estate with a recorded history of wine production dating back to 1461; the renowned Irish Barton family assumed control in 1736. Intriguingly, Haut-Bailly commanded prices equal to Lafite, Latour, Margaux, and Haut-Brion in the 19th century. Owned since 1955 by Belgian negociant Daniel Sanders, in 1998, Haut-Bailly was purchased by American Robert G. Wilmers, but Veronique Sanders continues to steer the cru classé estate to greatness, year after year. The 74-hectare lies in the heart of gravelly Pessac-Leognan, and the 2018 vintage blends 55% cabernet sauvignon with 35% merlot and equal soupcons of petit verdot and cabernet franc. The estate's core is 10 acres of 100 year old vines, concentrated further this vintage with yields around 20 ha/hl. Complex, perfumed, and mesmerizing creme de cassis, ripe cherries, fine oak spice, mocha, and dusty minerals, it is unbelievably cohesive now, a testament to the excellent 2018 vintage. The wine is structured for long and graceful ageing, as only great classic claret can do. This vintage commands $275, and it is worth every penny. Be disciplined and let evolve for a few years.Prices:
BC$270.00750ml
Producer: Château Haut-Bailly
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Evolve Momentotext
86PTS

Evolve Momento 2018

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is an easy blend of 45% Cabernet Franc, 45% Merlot, and 10% Syrah, with each component aged separately in American and French oak for 14 months before being blended. Soft and powdery, with cherry, raspberry on a shorter, furry palate, finishing with a drying twist and a call for pairing with tomato sauced dishes.Prices:
BC$23.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Clos du Soleil Célestialetext
92PTS

Clos du Soleil Célestiale 2019

British Columbia, CanadaThey like Bordeaux blends at Clos du Soleil, but this wine is miles beyond any $28 Bordeaux red in the market. It is an all-Similkameen red made with 71/11/9/7/2 merlot / malbec / cabernet sauvignon / cabernet franc / petit verdot. With a majority of merlot leading the blend, it is all about elegance and texture, and it draws you back to the wine, glass after glass. It smells like a raspberry / blackberry pie and tastes as you might expect, with fresh red fruit backed up by dark chocolate black fruit that melts in your mouth. The finish is savoury with a touch of sagebrush, and wild Similkameen notes that only add to its appeal. Post ferment, all done in concrete, it's aged in French oak barrels for 15 months. After a final cull of the barrels this was bottled under a screwcap. It's a baby Signature at a giveaway price. Unfortunately, the winery is sold out, so you will have to look to private wine shops and restaurants.Prices:
BC$27.90750ml
ON$26.00750ml
Producer: Clos du Soleil Winery
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Fort Berens Meritage Reservetext
88PTS

Fort Berens Meritage Reserve 2018

British Columbia, CanadaThe Reserve Meritage is a mix of Lillooet estate fruit with additions from the Okanagan Valley. Merlot dominates the blend, with cabernet franc and cabernet sauvignon adding power and structure. Partial appassimento is also in the mix, adding extra spice and weight to the wine. The attack is juicy with sweet black fruit, ripe tannins, and spicy earthy notes in the finish. Depending on how youthful you like your reds, you can drink or hold this. Solid.Prices:
BC$36.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Fort Berens Meritagetext
88PTS

Fort Berens Meritage 2019

British Columbia, CanadaBy definition, a Meritage wine is a blend of Bordeaux grapes. At least for now, climate change could disrupt the Bordeaux mix down the road, but that is another story. At Fort Berens, the 88/11/1 blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, and cabernet franc is fermented and aged separately for 15 months in used French and American oak. The nose and entry are slightly rustic on the palate, with meaty, spicy black cherry dusted in dark cocoa powder and spice. The tannins are still youthful but not too dry. They will require more time to settle in. For the moment, you could serve this with a piece of Reggiano, Bolognese pasta, or beef tacos.Prices:
BC$27.99750ml
Producer: Fort Berens Estate Winery
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Liquidity Dividendtext
90PTS

Liquidity Dividend 2019

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaLiquidity is stepping it up under winemaker Amy Paynter, who continues to paint an elegant strip across her wines, making them very approachable in their youth. The blend is 45/40/15 cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and cabernet franc, all aged in French oak. Look for savoury black raspberry and blackcurrant flecked with smoky licorice dusted in chalky tannins. Youthful enough for bison or lamb but elegant sufficient for roast beef.Prices:
BC$35.00750ml
Producer: Liquidity Wine Ltd
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Sumac Ridge Cabernet Merlot Private Reservetext
84PTS

Sumac Ridge Cabernet Merlot Private Reserve 2019

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaConsistently ordinary, this straightforward blend of cabernet/merlot is made for drinking now. The attack is sweet, with ripe black fruit jam, tobacco, and spicy, smoky oak tones throughout. It is round and soft, but the sugar dulls the palate and lingers to the point of being cloying. Ribs in a sweet hot sauce might match this wine.Prices:
BC$15.49750ml
AB$15.50750ml
Producer: Sumac Ridge Estate Winery
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Evolve Momentotext
86PTS

Evolve Momento 2018

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Evolve wines are styled to be easy sipping with round edges. The 45/45/10 mix of cabernet franc, merlot, and syrah is aged separately in American and French oak for 14 months before the final blend. The palate is light with spicy raspberry and an earthy herbaceous undercurrent on a short, dry finish. A cheeseburger might be the way to go here, or maybe a cheesy pizza. Unfortunately, Momento falls a little short of the easy sipping banner this time out.Prices:
BC$23.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Craggy Range Te Kahutext
90PTS

Craggy Range Te Kahu 2018

Gimblett Gravels, Hawkes Bay, North Island, New ZealandCool climate, but from a warm site, Te Kahu opens with spicy, red fruit. The palate is all about plums and blueberry. The palate textures follow the Craggy style focused on elegance and balance throughout the wine. The blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, malbec, cabernet franc, and petit verdot changes every year to best maintain the style. Almost claret-like, so go with roasted meats or a rich winter vegetable casserole. Te Kahu means "the cloak," referring to the mist surrounding the winery.Prices:
BC$34.99750ml
AB$67.95750ml
Producer: Craggy Range Vineyards Ltd.
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09 February 2022

Clos Lentiscus Croac Croac Pinktext
87PTS

Clos Lentiscus Croac Croac Pink 2018

Penedès, Catalunya (Catalonia Cataluña), SpainFrom the biodynamic and biodiverse world of Penedès' Clos Lentiscus, in Catalonia, this natural / organic / biodynamic 50/50 blend of Ull de llebre and Xarel.lo Vermell (red xarel.lo) is from El Xanguet vineyard, and 38 year old vines. After a native ferment in stainless, this blend remained there until it was bottled the following spring, with nothing added or deleted. This is their take on the traditional clarete blend of red and white grapes, popular in Spain more than a century prior. More a lighter red in hue, this is lifted with tart rhubarb, choke cherry, mustard seed, rinsed with an astringent VA. Tannins are light and lightly sticky, taking this to a tart finish. Certainly very natty, try this frog with a chill and some pickled veg / cured fish.Prices:
ON$45.001000ml
Producer: Clos Lentiscus
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Gérard Bertrand Côte Des Roses Rosétext
89PTS

Gérard Bertrand Côte Des Roses Rosé 2020

Languedoc, Sud de France, FranceFrom various sites across the Languedoc, this distinctively bottled rosé (check the rose imprint in the bottom of the bottle) blends Grenache, Cinsault, and Syrah, with each vinified cool separately in stainless, and then blended. Sleek wild strawberry, raspberry, orange glides along a juicy palate, tart with tangerine acidity through to a snappy finish. Crack the vino-loc now and have this pretty bottle in centre stage at your picnic table.Prices:
BC$24.95750ml
AB$22.99750ml
NB$19.99750ml
NS$19.99750ml
NF$21.99750ml
MB$22.99750ml
ON$19.95750ml
QC$18.35750ml
Producer: Gérard Bertrand
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Red Barn at Jagged Rock Transfiction Rosétext
89PTS

Red Barn at Jagged Rock Transfiction Rosé 2020

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaTransfiction is a cabernet franc, syrah and sangiovese blend that is handled simply: whole-cluster-pressed, fermented, and aged in concrete. The style is a bit like Provence, with a pale, pale pink hue. The nose is a ripe strawberry affair with a twist of desert scrub for interest. The attack is similar with more strawberry, citrus, rhubarb. Another side of Jagged Rock Vineyard's versatility that continues to surprise me.Prices:
BC$24.90750ml
Producer: Red Barn
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08 February 2022

Time Bruttext
88PTS

Time Brut 2018

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom vineyards in Oliver and Kelowna, this 55/45 Pinot Noir / Chardonnay was fermented in neutral French oak and stainless before heading to tank for a charmat fermentation. Toasted wood frames this dry, reserved sparkler, with hints of red apple, lemon poking through before a parmesan rind and wet cedar-kissed finish. More structural than fruity, this is a grown-up style asking to be poured at the dinner table, with friends.Prices:
BC$34.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Evolve Pink Effervescencetext
87PTS

Evolve Pink Effervescence NV

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe latest Pink Effervescence is a frizzante blend of 70% chardonnay, 28% pinot blanc and 2% syrah, with fruit coming off Penticton, Osoyoos, and Naramata vineyards. Pouring a peach-salmon hue, it fills the mouth with frothy, candied strawberries, red apple, and mandarin, with 6 grams of residual sugar to smooth it all out. A simple, fun pink fizz to pop now with friends. Chill this well and consider spicy appetizers as the match.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Evolve Effervescencetext
87PTS

Evolve Effervescence NV

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaEffervescence is a 70% chardonnay and 30% pinot blanc frizzante, and with fruit sourced from Penticton, Osoyoos, and Naramata. With an RS of 4 g/L, it's on the drier side, with ample white florals, pear, kiwi, and apple. Acidity is bright and lively through the snappy finish. A big improvement from when I last tasted this NV a few years back. Chill well, pop, and enjoy now.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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L'Ormarins Brut Classique Rosétext
89PTS

L'Ormarins Brut Classique Rosé NV

Western Cape, South AfricaFrom Anthonij Rupert’s sparkling cellar, La Garonne, in Franschhoek, where the L’Ormarins farm has winemaking history back to the 17th century. This MCC blends 60% pinot noir with 40% chardonnay, with fruit coming mainly from L'Ormarins farm, but also from Overberg, Darling, and Robertson. Tight and nimble, with a buzzy cranberry acidity floating wild strawberry, cherry, and grapefruit pith over a slight pillow of lees to cushion. The finish is snappy and citrus bright, welcoming salmon canapés.Prices:
BC$32.00750ml
Producer: Anthonij Rupert
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Meyer Family Vineyards Méthode Traditionnelle Extra Bruttext
87PTS

Meyer Family Vineyards Méthode Traditionnelle Extra Brut NV

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe latest bottling of the NV Extra Brut mixes 2016 and 2017 fruit into an 80/20 chardonnay/pinot noir blend. It opens a bit flat in spirit, although the bubbles are textbook. The aromas are a nutty, toasty, leesy mix with some baked apple and oxidative notes that sit on the fruit, leaving the finish a touch bitter. The base wine spends 18-24 months on lees before bottling for another 28 months' rest. Ready to drink.Prices:
BC$34.88750ml
Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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Relats de Viticultors Corpinnat Brut Naturetext
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Relats de Viticultors Corpinnat Brut Nature NV

Sant Sadurní d'Anoia, Penedès, Catalunya (Catalonia Cataluña), SpainThe third generation, Ton Mata, manages this family estate and the 65ha in the calcareous terroir of the Bitlles Valley in Penedès' Sant Sadurni d’Anoia. In 2019, Recaredo and eight more family wineries cut ties with the Cava DO to form their own EU-recognized body that is tied to sustainable farming, and place: Corpinnat. This blend of Xarel-lo, Macabeu, Parellada, Monastrell comes from select organic / biodynamic estate vineyards. After a native ferment, primarily in stainless, this spent 2 years on lees, under cork, before being disgorged with 0 dosage. The nimble tightness of green apple, pear skin, marcona almonds, broken stones is offset by a toasty doughy oxidative note, courtesy of the time on lees, under cork. Bone dry and savoury, this fiercely independent fizz would work well with grilled sardines and salty tapas.Prices:
ON$35.95750ml
BC$47.00750ml
Producer: Recaredo
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Meyer Family Vineyards Méthode Traditionnelle Extra Bruttext
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Meyer Family Vineyards Méthode Traditionnelle Extra Brut NV

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWith fruit off their McLean Creek Road Vineyard in Okanagan Falls, this bottling of their NV Extra Brut is based on 2016 and 2017, and a blend of 80% chardonnay and 20% pinot noir. The fruit was whole cluster pressed and fermented in stainless, with full MLF, before the base wine spent 18-24 months on lees. It went into bottle in summer of 2018 for another 28 months' rest, and was disgorged in summer 2021 with 0 dosage. Ample dough beds baked red apple, lemon curd, toast, all cloaked with an oxidative blanket, which tamps down the fruit. Take this now with a chill.Prices:
BC$34.88750ml
Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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Furleigh Estate Classic Cuvée English Bruttext
88PTS

Furleigh Estate Classic Cuvée English Brut 2014

EnglandFrom the limestone laced hills of Dorset, this blend of 40% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir, and 30% Pinot Meunier, with 18 months on lees before disgorgement with 11 g/L. Doughy and expansive, with toasted brioche, baked red apple, lemon peel and pith, this thankfully has lively, brisk acidity to carry the heft of the creamy palate. A riper, creamier style to take on equally creamy dishes. Drinking now.Prices:
ON$49.95750ml
Producer: Furleigh Estate
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Frey-Sohler Crémant d'Alsace Extra Bruttext
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Frey-Sohler Crémant d'Alsace Extra Brut 2012

Alsace, FranceThese riesling grapes come from gravelled, sandy soils, and after a stainless ferment, this spent 100 months aging on lees prior to disgorgement. This certainly shows extended time on lees, with a burnished lime note running through subtle honeycomb, pear skin on the dry palate. Riesling's characteristic vibrant acidity backbones this crémant, pushing it through the stony finish. Quite distinct, try pairing with smoked fish or paté.Prices:
ON$31.45750ml
Producer: Frey-Sohler
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Dirler-Cadé Crémant d'Alsace Brut Naturetext
88PTS

Dirler-Cadé Crémant d'Alsace Brut Nature 2016

Alsace, FranceThis blend of organic / biodynamic pinot gris, auxerrois, and riesling was sourced from vineyards in Guebwiller, Bergholtz, Bux lieu-dit, and Belzbrunnen, with an average vine age of 35 years. After a stainless ferment, this spent 24-32 months on lees, with 0 dosage at bottling. This presents dry, with subtle white florals, pear blossom, yellow apple, on a silken palate, with fine bubbles and bright lift through the chalky finish. A lovely aperitif.Prices:
ON$41.00750ml
Producer: Dirler-Cadé
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Chronos Bruttext
87PTS

Chronos Brut NV

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom vineyards in Penticton, Osoyoos, and Naramata, this fizz blends 80% chardonnay with 20% pinot noir, done in the charmat method. Sharp and tight, with white florals, white peach, pear, red apple on a dough lined palate, finishing briefly with a lick of white florals. A simple, bright and crisp fizz for cracking now.Prices:
BC$34.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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McWatters Collection Bruttext
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McWatters Collection Brut 2017

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis new release blends 65% chardonnay, 25% pinot noir, and 10% pinot blanc, harkening back to the pinot blanc tip in the iconic Stellar's Jay that namesake Harry McWatters created decades ago. Unlike that simpler fizz however, this serious traditional method sparkler spent 42 months on lees prior to disgorgement. This is tight and sharp with green apple, lemon pith and peel, light toast, and subtle white flowers on a humming frame, finishing with a twist of lemon and brace of stones. A tighter, racier, leaner, somewhat severe style at this point.Prices:
BC$64.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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McWatters Collection Bruttext
89PTS

McWatters Collection Brut 2017

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis tribute to Harry McWatters is made in the traditional method from chardonnay (65%), pinot noir (25%), and pinot blanc (10%). The 2017 vintage marked McWatters' 50th vintage, and this wine ensures we can continue to celebrate his legacy. Leading with ample toast after 42 months on lees, the fruit is nicely developed with golden apple and dried lemon. Bone dry, racy, and precise, this is serious, aspirational sparkling wine that's a welcome addition to the arsenal of BC bubbles.Prices:
BC$64.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Chronos Bruttext
88PTS

Chronos Brut NV

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis blend of chardonnay (80%) and pinot noir (20%) is soft and rounded, with a gentle mousse. Showing subdued peach, citrus, and green apple, there's a slight imprint of lees from the Charmat method production. Simpler is better in terms of food pairing options: think poached shrimp or clams on the half shell. Fruit was sourced from Penticton, Osoyoos, and Naramata.Prices:
BC$34.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Evolve Pink Effervescencetext
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Evolve Pink Effervescence NV

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaA dash of syrah gives this blend of chardonnay and pinot blanc its stylish pale salmon hue. Sourced from up and down the South Okanagan, from Naramata to Penticton to Osoyoos, this Charmat method sparkler leads with citrus and soft red berries, with the emphasis squarely on the bright fruit. Like its Effervescence sibling, this is crisp and refreshingly balanced, though the bubbles may be more obvious and assertive here. It doesn't matter who you serve this to, the bottle's not going to last too long. Well made.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Evolve Effervescencetext
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Evolve Effervescence NV

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis 70/30 blend of chardonnay and pinot blanc is made in the charmat method, which adds a subtle lees note to the background. Really, however, this is all about crisp citrus and apple, which are lifted by delicate orchard blossoms. Light, brisk, and dry, this is perfect for a spring weekend brunch. Think of this as the Okanagan's answer to Prosecco.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Donatella Cinelli Colombini Brut Rosétext
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Donatella Cinelli Colombini Brut Rosé NV

Tuscany, ItalyFrom organic sangiovese growing at Fattoria del Colle, this inaugural Brut Rosé of Sangiovese spent 24 months on lees. Tight and racy and dry with wild raspberry, rhubarb lined with tangerine on th brisk palate, lingering with fine spices and an alluring bergamot pith. A welcome first attempt, addition to the portfolio, and one to accompany aprés or small plates.Prices:
ON$70.00750ml
Producer: Donatella Cinelli Colombini
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Chronos Bruttext
88PTS

Chronos Brut NV

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWinemaker Lynzee Schatz uses an 80/20 mix of chardonnay and pinot noir fruit from King Family Vineyard (Penticton), Mirror Lake (Osoyoos), and 3 Sisters (Naramata). The varietals are fermented separately with some lees stirring on the chardonnay before a final ferment in tank using the cuve close method. This Okanagan Valley bubble has bright lime and lemon, flecked with peach, apricot, and sagebrush that finishes light but dry, with a touch of oxidation. The winery suggests you pair it with Pad Thai or a prosciutto and melon salad.Prices:
BC$34.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Time Bruttext
89PTS

Time Brut 2018

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaTime Brut mixes Phantom Creek (Oliver) fruit with Kuipers (Kelowna), fermented in neutral French oak barrels and stainless steel barrels, and finally in classic method cuve close tanks, charmat style. The attack is creamy with stone fruit and citrus that intrigues. The bubbles are persistent and primarily fine, previewing a dry finish. Solid traditional style you can serve with various foods.Prices:
BC$34.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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McWatters Collection Bruttext
89PTS

McWatters Collection Brut 2017

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe acid over sugar wins me over from the start. A new label of 65/35/10 chardonnay, pinot noir, and pinot blanc spends 42 months on lees after a traditional fermentation. The nose is well tuned and tightened to reveal citrus, green apple, with toasted notes and a rich lees character throughout. The palate is equally taut, begging more time in bottle or a creamy cheese to balance its bright, youthful acidity. It is one to age but doesn't be afraid to enjoy along its journey. Impressive and another contribution to the growing selection of quality BC sparkling wine.Prices:
BC$64.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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Gray Monk Odyssey White Brut Méthode Classiquetext
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Gray Monk Odyssey White Brut Méthode Classique 2018

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaNow a BC classic, this oddball blend of Riesling, Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay Musque is done by traditional method, with 13 months on lees prior to disgorgement. Each grape shows its part her, with lime pith, white florals, red apple, and ample stony pithy lemon sharpening the medium body. There's a generous lees pad here which keeps things in balance through to the crab apple finish. Smartly dryish, this is an easy choice for canapés hour.Prices:
BC$25.99750ml
Producer: Gray Monk Estate Winery
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Cap Classique Pieter Ferreira Pinot Noir Rosé Extra Bruttext
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Cap Classique Pieter Ferreira Pinot Noir Rosé Extra Brut 2015

Western Cape, South AfricaWith Pinot Noir from Robertson (82%) and Stanford (12%) and the regions' decomposed granite, and Table Mountain sandstone, this was a whole bunch pressed after a brief maceration to create the glowing salmon hue. The juice was fermented in stainless steel before heading to the bottle for a minimum of 72 months on lees. My bottle was disgorged in September 2021, with 3.85 g/L RS. Spiced raspberry, cherry, meringue floods the expansive palate, held in check with a lashing of lemon pith/peel and lingering with cherry leather on the lengthy, spiced finish. Red fruit-forward, to be sure, but with finesse and elegance throughout. A worthy protein partner.Prices:
ON$64.00750ml
Producer: Pieter Ferreira
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Cap Classique Pieter Ferreira Blanc de Blancstext
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Cap Classique Pieter Ferreira Blanc de Blancs 2015

Western Cape, South AfricaWith fruit sourced from cool-climate Robertson, and its limestone and weathered shale soils, this was whole bunch pressed and fermented in stainless with a small portion undergoing fermentation in French barrels. Once in bottle, this spent a minimum of 72 momths on lees contact (my bottle was disgorged in June 2021) and was dosed with 3.12 g/L RS. Tight and focused, with broken stone, chalk, meringue, streaming the long, sleek palate, shaped with lemon pith and peel, and finishing on a brioche note. There is a hint of oxidation peeking through with red apple / dough in the core. Quite refined, and elegant through the lingering, chalky finishPrices:
ON$64.00750ml
Producer: Pieter Ferreira
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Cap Classique Pieter Ferreira Extra Bruttext
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Cap Classique Pieter Ferreira Extra Brut 2016

Western Cape, South AfricaThis new cuvée is a blend of 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay, with the Pinot Noir from Paarl (Glen Carlou) and Elgin (Shannon Vineyards), and the Chardonnay from Robertson, crossing soils from limestone to weathered shale to Table Mountain Sandstone. It was fermented and rested on lees in stainless, and rested at least 54 months years on lees. My bottle was disgorged in September 2021 with 3.6 g/L. Pouring a deep yellow hue, this creamy fizz is redolent with toasty brioche, subtle cherry, green apple, and a cloud of lees across the deep chalky base, with a lengthy, lingering chalkiness through the long meringue finish. Very complete, drinking beautifully now upon release.Prices:
ON$56.00750ml
Producer: Pieter Ferreira
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Fitz Brut Sparkling Winetext
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Fitz Brut Sparkling Wine 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaAnother couple of years down the line, and the 2016 Brut is still aging gracefully with just a subtle evolution to the fruit. It shows an alluring, delicate nose of lemon, green apple, and chalk, with some toastiness from 24 months on lees. Well-balanced and lively, the bubbles are starting to soften, but there's otherwise no rush to open this. After all, we know Okanagan sparkling wine has no trouble aging.Prices:
BC$32.99750ml
Producer: Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards
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07 February 2022

Evolve Effervescencetext
86PTS

Evolve Effervescence NV

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSparkling wine has become a thing in BC, and for the most part, it is a good thing. This 70/30 mix of chardonnay and pinot blanc is an excellent example of the exploration and experimentation happening across the province, where acidity is a gift. It is primarily dry (hooray), full of floral pear, crisp apple, with a subtle frizzante bubble. A fun sparkler to while away an afternoon on a sunny patio. Bring on the summer.Prices:
BC$21.99750ml
Producer: Time Family of Wines
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04 February 2022

Torres Mas La Planatext
94PTS

Torres Mas La Plana 2015

Penedès, Catalunya (Catalonia Cataluña), SpainA primarily dry year with some respite in late winter and summer previewed normal temperatures slightly cooler than the average growing season. Mas la Plana is fermented in stainless steel and macerated 15-25 days before spending 18 months in 85 percent new French oak. It is a highly polished cabernet with a friendly side. Blackcurrants and black plums mix with a warm, earthy undercurrent that builds complexity and tames any exuberant fruit. Elegant and balanced, this will age effortlessly and improve through 2030. Bravo Torres. Lamb shoulder would be a good match.Prices:
BC$72.99750ml
Producer: Familia Torres
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Cathedral Cellar Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Cathedral Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Western Cape, South AfricaCathedral Cellars has been around for decades, blending cabernet from several Western Cape subregions, including Stellenbosch, Swartland, and Paarl. This mixes earthy roasted vegetables and black fruit with a spicy, coffee finish. Old fashioned at best; it could use a style overhaul. Best with roasted meats.Prices:
BC$17.99750ml
AB$19.00750ml
MB$17.95750ml
ON$17.95750ml
QC$17.95750ml
NFL$18.25750ml
Producer: KWV International
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Painted Rock Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Painted Rock Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Skaha Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe fruit was hand-picked from a 2.15-acre estate block on November 01st, and the berries were hand sorted before several small-batch, four-day cold soaks. The fermentation stretched 21 days, leading to ageing in 30% of new French oak barrels for 18 months. The style is dark and brooding with branchy, black fruit and classic youthful cabernet muscle. The tannins are well managed, dense and primarily smooth, allowing for graceful ageing through 2027 and beyond. Look for black and blue fruits and a firm dusting of sagebrush. Osso Buco or lamb shoulder would be the ticket if you drink it this year, but I would wait three to five years to get into this wine. Well done.Prices:
BC$39.99750ml
Producer: Painted Rock Estate Winery
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Wolf Blass Gold Label Regional Reserve Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Wolf Blass Gold Label Regional Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

McLaren Vale, South Australia, AustraliaThe Wolf Blass Gold Label Regional Reserve Cabernet mixes fruit from McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek. It is packed with juicy, spicy, black cherry, black plum, and dense, soft, round tannins. A savoury note keeps it all interesting, and the best is, this is ready to drink now. Stir fried crispy beef with snow peas is the winery recommendation, or I would suggest beef burritos as another option. Drink or hold through 2028.Prices:
BC$24.99750ml
MB$29.99750ml
Producer: Wolf Blass Pty Ltd
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Sterling Vineyards Heritage Collection Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Sterling Vineyards Heritage Collection Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

Napa Valley, California, United StatesIf you like your cabernet with the touch of sweetness, this one is for you. The chocolate cherry attack leads to a ripe and round palate with blackberry and a soft, spicy underside. The finish is medium-long and vanilla flecked. It is ready to drink and might be best served with spicy food to allow the sweet fruit to balance the heat in the dish. You could also sip this solo as a meal in itself.Prices:
BC$38.99750ml
AB$31.95750ml
MB$41.00750ml
NB$41.49750ml
NS$41.49750ml
Producer: Sterling Vineyards
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Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California, United StatesBeringer Vineyards has owned and farmed its Knights Valley vineyards since the mid-1960s. The location first appeared on the label in 1974, and it officially became an American Viticulture Area (AVA) in 1983. 2018 walks the line between ripeness and savoury, treading on its mint, black cherry, licorice, coffee, and exotic orange notes. The blend is 84/9/6/1/ cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc and petit verdot that spends 16 months in new French oak, of which 25 percent is new. I love the sophisticated but easy-drinking style this serious bottle of cabernet.Prices:
BC$46.99750ml
AB$41.00750ml
SK$35.50750ml
MB$47.00750ml
ON$45.00750ml
QC$37.10750ml
NL$49.98750ml
Producer: Beringer Napa Valley Vineyards
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Stag's Leap Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 125th Anniversarytext
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Stag's Leap Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 125th Anniversary 2018

Napa Valley, California, United StatesStag's Leap has shone under winemaker Christophe Paubert although he candidly admits he doesn't do much to the wine. He likes to keep it simple, and the results are simply excellent. 2018 is a mix of 80% cabernet sauvignon joined by bits of merlot, malbec, tannat, and petit verdot, and it is a standout. Less new oak has left an impression on this wine and consumers who love the value and flavours. Fine tannins lead the way allowing the fruit to shine without overpowering, mixing blackcurrant and earthy, nutty notes of cocoa, spice, and stone dust—stock up.Prices:
BC$57.99750ml
AB$54.95750ml
Producer: Stags' Leap Winery
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Noble Vines Collection 337 Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Noble Vines Collection 337 Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Lodi, Central Valley, California, United States337 is the French cabernet sauvignon clone behind this wine. It is predictably soft and sweet with some smoky ash, chocolate, and black cherry that finishes dry. Not the best example of this wine I have tasted. The solution could be to serve it with BBQ ribs.Prices:
BC$18.99750ml
AB$19.00750ml
Producer: Delicato Family Vineyards
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Carmen Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignontext
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Carmen Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIf you haven’t tried a Chilean cabernet in some time, this label is a fun one to begin with. Intense, dark, and full-bodied, it is stuffed full of boldo, the Chilean equivalent of garrigue. The attack is warm and round, the tannins slippery, the fruit a mix of blackberries and brambleberries with resiny, cedar, and tobacco flecks throughout. Ready to drink but will hold through 2027. Think grilled beef or rich winter vegetable dishes.Prices:
BC$22.00750ml
Producer: Viña Carmen
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Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon Puente Alto Vineyardtext
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Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon Puente Alto Vineyard 2018

Puente Alto, Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileThe 2018 vintage was dubbed “one of the greatest vintages” yet to be produced by chief winemaker Enrique Tirado, and the wine does not disappoint. The purity of fruit, a touch bloody, balances the richness of its cool black fruits and unique silky texture. If you are a collector, you need this wine, although not drinking it now will be a tall order. It will cellar easily through 2045. Many in Chile have highly lauded the growing season, and at Puente Alto, it was magical. There was rain when needed, perfect temperatures at flowering and fruit set, and primarily dry summer with fall yielding tiny, rich bunches. The fruit was picked in April and early May, giving meagre yields. Don Melchor comprises numerous parcels of fruit. 181 went into the 2018 blending process, finished with a 91/5/3/1 mix of cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, merlot and petit verdot, all aged 15 months in 72 percent new French oak barriques.Prices:
BC$149.99750ml
Producer: Viña Concha y Toro S.A.
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Stonestreet Cabernet Sauvignon Rockfall Vineyardtext
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Stonestreet Cabernet Sauvignon Rockfall Vineyard 2017

Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, California, United StatesRockfall is a mix of the best cabernet sauvignon vineyard sites on Stonestreet Mountain, focusing on the structural elements given up by the Mayacamas range and the vintage. The nose is Sonoma savoury with black raspberry and tea. The attack is rich and full-bodied with heaps of black currant, brambleberry, and milk chocolate that rise to take on the savoury, earthy undercurrent. The tannins are perfectly managed, but you could hold this wine for seven to ten years with no problems. The fruit is grown mainly above the fog line at 400 to 2,400 feet and is hand-picked, destemmed, and fermented in stainless steel. Next, it goes through malolactic fermentation in the barrel, and there is a minute 1.5 percent petit verdot added to the cabernet sauvignon. Finally, it spends 19 months in 38 percent new French oak.Prices:
BC$103.99750ml
AB$88.00750ml
Producer: Stonestreet Winery
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Longshot Cabernet Sauvignontext
87PTS

Longshot Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

California, United StatesThis is the second wine I've tried from Longshot, a Gallo brand that is specifically for the Canadian market. It's known as Dark Horse in the United States. The wines deliver on what they promise, and at a fair price. This shows juicy, slightly confected dark fruits with a smattering of sweet oak spices. It's made to fit the style, with an evident winemaking imprint, but it's a solid midweek pour that will appeal broadly. 5 g/L residual sugar helps to smooth out the palate.Prices:
BC$14.99750ml
Producer: E & J Gallo
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03 February 2022

Antiyal Carmenere Vinedo Escorialtext
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Antiyal Carmenere Vinedo Escorial 2019

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIn 1996, winemaker Alvaro Espinoza and his family planted two acres of vines around their home in Maipo. In 2003, they planted their El Escorial estate in the rocky volcanic / basaltic soils of the Andean foothills with over 25 acres organic / biodynamic vines at 500m. Pura Fe means Pure Faith. This special single block carmenere comes from 17 year old vines, native fermented in large stainless tanks over 25 days, prior to 1 years' rest in Nomblot cement eggs. This opens with a tsunami of reduction, which requires serious airtime to dissipate. Then brooding dark fruit starts to emerge: wild blackberry, black cherry, tobacco, dark chocolate, woven with an earthy green pitchiness. The palate is very smoothed, as, surprisingly, are the tannins. This structural wine is built very smartly for drinking now, but has time ahead.Prices:
ON$88.00750ml
Producer: Antiyal
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Antiyal Antiyaltext
91PTS

Antiyal Antiyal 2016

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIn 1996, winemaker Alvaro Espinoza and his family planted two acres of vines around their home in Maipo. In 2003, they planted their El Escorial estate in the rocky volcanic / basaltic soils of the Andean foothills with over 25 acres organic / biodynamic vines at 500m. Pura Fe means Pure Faith. This year's Antiyal is 54% carmenere, followed by cab sauv and syrah. This was native fermented in large stainless over 25 days followed by 18 months in French barrel, 50% new. 5% of this was aged in cement egg. Potent medicinal black cherry, kirsch, blackberry is framed with firm, structural tannins, now absorbed into the dense fruit. Acidity is lofted via altitude, able to carry the heft of this full bodied red through the spiced, kirsch slicked finish. Definitely a wine for grilled fare, now, and in future.Prices:
ON$80.00750ml
Producer: Antiyal
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Antiyal Kuyentext
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Antiyal Kuyen 2018

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIn 1996, winemaker Alvaro Espinoza and his family planted two acres of vines around their home in Maipo. In 2003, they planted their El Escorial estate in the rocky volcanic / basaltic soils of the Andean foothills with over 25 acres organic / biodynamic vines at 500m. Pura Fe means Pure Faith. Kuyen 2018 is a blend of syrah, cabernet sauvignon, carmenere, and petit verdot, from vines 16 years old. This was native fermented in large stainless tanks over 1 month, before 1 year in French barrels (20% new). Very pure and polished, with layers of wild black cherry, blackberry, tobacco, and cracked pepper. Acidity is bright, and tannins are firm and structural, but well integrated into the dense fruit. A statement wine that drinks well now and with years ahead.Prices:
ON$43.00750ml
Producer: Antiyal
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Antiyal Pura Fe Carmeneretext
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Antiyal Pura Fe Carmenere 2019

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIn 1996, winemaker Alvaro Espinoza and his family planted two acres of vines around their home in Maipo. In 2003, they planted their El Escorial estate in the rocky volcanic / basaltic soils of the Andean foothills with over 25 acres organic / biodynamic vines at 500m. Pura Fe means Pure Faith. After a native ferment in stainless, this aged 10 months in French barrels, 20% new. Black cherry, blackberry is ringed with herbaceous green branch / pitch. Tannins are firm, cradling the textured fruit to a kirsch lashed finish. Definitely a big red, calling out for grilled meats / veg.Prices:
ON$28.00750ml
Producer: Antiyal
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Antiyal Pura Fe Cabernet Sauvignontext
91PTS

Antiyal Pura Fe Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIn 1996, winemaker Alvaro Espinoza and his family planted two acres of vines around their home in Maipo. In 2003, they planted their El Escorial estate in the rocky volcanic / basaltic soils of the Andean foothills with over 25 acres organic / biodynamic vines at 500m. Pura Fe means Pure Faith. This cabernet comes from 8 year old vines, native fermented in stainless before resting 10 months in French barrels (20% new). This full bodied red is chiselled with basaltic minerality, striating and framing the wild cherry, wild blackberry, subtle kirsch layered throughout. Acidity is lofted, and the long, lightly grippy tannins take this to a stony spiced finish. Great presence and freshness now, and with time ahead.Prices:
ON$28.00750ml
Producer: Antiyal
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Antiyal Pura Fe Garnacha Syrahtext
88PTS

Antiyal Pura Fe Garnacha Syrah 2019

Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileIn 1996, winemaker Alvaro Espinoza and his family planted two acres of vines around their home in Maipo. In 2003, they planted their El Escorial estate in the rocky volcanic / basaltic soils of the Andean foothills with over 25 acres organic / biodynamic vines at 500m. Pura Fe means Pure Faith. This 70/30 garnacha / syrah was native fermented in large stainless tanks over 1 month prior to aging 10 months in French barrels (20% new). Medicinal cherry, kirsch, potent blackberry fills this structural, full-bodied and dense red, with ample lashings of iron. Tannins are firm and structural, housing this to a lingering finish.Prices:
ON$28.00750ml
Producer: Antiyal
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Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon Puente Alto Vineyardtext
92PTS

Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon Puente Alto Vineyard 2018

Puente Alto, Valle del Maipo, Region del Valle Central, ChileDon Melchor is the icon wine of Concha y Toro, off a single 127 hectare vineyard on the northern side of the Maipo River, cooled by the winds running down the Andes, as well as inlets of breezes off the Pacific. The warm 2018 yielded a blend of 91% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Merlot and 1% Petit Verdot. Rich and elegant, with ample structural wood framework housing black cherry, medicinal cassis, sultry dark cocoa, espresso, flicks of mint and cedar on a full, upright palate. Tannins are ample and grippy but well integrated into the artfully blended fruit, suggesting this polished red can be drunk now (with airtime) but has its best days ahead.Prices:
BC$149.99750ml
Producer: Viña Concha y Toro S.A.
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San Pedro 1865 Selected Vineyards Carmeneretext
88PTS

San Pedro 1865 Selected Vineyards Carmenere 2018

Valle del Maule, Region del Valle Central, ChileThis carmenere is off 10-20 year old vines in Maule, and it spent one year in oak barriques, 90% French, and 20% new. It shows well the herbaceousness of the grape, as well as Maule's plush dark cocoa, and wild mint. This is backed by wild cassis, tobacco, charcoal, and framed with ample gritty tannins. Acidity is bright enough to carry, and welcomes partnering with charcoal grilled root veg and / or beef.Prices:
BC24.99$19.99750ml
ON$20.00750ml
QC$22.00750ml
MB$19.99750ml
Producer: Viña San Pedro
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Carmen Gran Reserva Carmenere El Penasco Vineyardtext
89PTS

Carmen Gran Reserva Carmenere El Penasco Vineyard 2019

Valle del Colchagua, Valle del Rapel, Region del Valle Central, ChileGran Reserva is a 95/5 blend of carmenere and cabernet sauvignon, the latter adding to what is already a powerful red wine. The fruit comes from the hillsides o the Apalta Valley in Colchagua, displaying warm, silky, intense fruit with strong dark chocolate undercurrent and spicy tobacco, black cherry dusted in vanilla. A rich, soft-sipping wine that will have wide appeal and offers good value at this price. This single-vineyard wine, El Peñasco, is located in the hillsides in search of elegance, and it appears to have been a solid strategy. Carmenere lovers unite.Prices:
BC$19.99750ml
Producer: Viña Carmen
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San Pedro 1865 Selected Vineyards Carmeneretext
89PTS

San Pedro 1865 Selected Vineyards Carmenere 2018

Valle del Maule, Region del Valle Central, ChileThis archetypal carmenere combines ripe, lush fruit with an appealing savoury herbaceousness, showing jammy blackberry that's heightened by green peppercorn, spicy herbs, and subtle oak spices. It’s on point, both complex and well-defined, and true to variety and place: the Valle del Maule. Medium-full bodied, the tannins are ripe and fairly soft, with just enough freshness to keep it all in balance. If you like the savoury side of carmenere, you can't go wrong at this price.Prices:
BC24.99$19.99750ml
ON$20.00750ml
QC$22.00750ml
MB$19.99750ml
Producer: Viña San Pedro
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San Pedro 1865 Selected Vineyards Carmeneretext
87PTS

San Pedro 1865 Selected Vineyards Carmenere 2018

Valle del Maule, Region del Valle Central, ChileMaule carmenere is well respected, and this label using 10-20 year old vines spends 12 months in 90 percent French oak barriques, of which 20 percent is new. It is always fragrant and offers up spicy, savoury, dried leaves, and earthy peppery notes that preview red fruit, cassis, and chocolate with notes of charcoal in the finish. Beef empanadas or winter vegetables are the matches.Prices:
BC24.99$19.99750ml
ON$20.00750ml
QC$22.00750ml
MB$19.99750ml
Producer: Viña San Pedro
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02 February 2022

Bossanova Cerasuolo d'Abruzzotext
89PTS

Bossanova Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo 2020

Abruzzo, ItalyBossanova is a biodynamic, natural project started between 2 friends in 2018. They're in Abruzzo, bordering Marche, next to the hill of Piceno, on the Adriatic coast. Their vines were planted in 1970. Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo is a relatively recent DOC in central Italy's Abruzzo, and is a category named for the light and graceful cherry-like colour of these wines (cerasuolo means cherry in Italian). Take this as a cross between a rosé and a very light red. From 40 year old vines, this montepulciano spent 25 minutes on skins, and was native fermented in concrete, where it remained for 8 months. Subtle strawberry blossoms, wild raspberry is seasoned with dried scrubby herbs, and infiltrated with ample Adriatic salinity. Acidity is bright, and tannins are concrete-rasped. A charmer.Prices:
Italy$30.00750ml
Producer: Bossanova
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Tocco Enisio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Riservatext
88PTS

Tocco Enisio Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Riserva 2014

Abruzzo, ItalyTocco was founded in 1981 by Enisio Tocco, in the hills of Pescara, in Alanno, on the Adriatic coast. His sons Lorenzo and Danilo joined him in 2014 after studying and working abroad. Their 34 hectares (half dedicated to vines) is certified organic. Named for their founder, this Riserva comes from 1978 planted vines, trained pergola. It was native fermented in stainless over 21 days before a year's rest in barriques, followed by another year in bottle prior to release. Wild cassis, dusky black plums, thorns, dark chocolate, leather work through the muscular palate, with dusty / sticky tannins pinning in the sides, and taking this to a bitter cherry chocolate finish. Certainly one to crack with big fall / winter stews or roasted game.Prices:
Producer: Tocco
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Tocco Capostazione Montepulciano d'Abruzzotext
89PTS

Tocco Capostazione Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2020

Abruzzo, ItalyTocco was founded in 1981 by Enisio Tocco, in the hills of Pescara, in Alanno, on the Adriatic coast. His sons Lorenzo and Danilo joined him in 2014 after studying and working abroad. Their 34 hectares (half dedicated to vines) is certified organic. This montepulciano was planted in 1990 on pergola training, and it was native fermented and reseted in stainless. Wild cherry, dark plush raspberry, dark cocoa wrap around a pure cherry core, framed with sticky tannins, lit with bright acidity, and finishing with subtle warming spices and ample stony salinity. An easy mid-week pizza or pasta red.Prices:
ON$22.00750ml
Producer: Tocco
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Tocco Capostazione Cerasuolo d'Abruzzotext
89PTS

Tocco Capostazione Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo 2020

Abruzzo, ItalyTocco was founded in 1981 by Enisio Tocco, in the hills of Pescara, in Alanno, on the Adriatic coast. His sons Lorenzo and Danilo joined him in 2014 after studying and working abroad. Their 34 hectares (half dedicated to vines) is certified organic. Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo is a relatively recent DOC in central Italy's Abruzzo, and is a category named for the light and graceful cherry-like colour of these wines (cerasuolo means cherry in Italian). Take this as a cross between a rosé and a very light red. A glowing pale crimson hue, this montepulciano is joyous and bright with wild strawberries, perfumed raspberries, goji berries, and a bright tangerine laced acidity that lifts this to a spiced finish. Very fine tannins hold this in place, and welcome a variety of food pairings (think romesco sauced veg and shellfish).Prices:
ON$22.00750ml
Producer: Tocco
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Nic Tartaglia Montepulcianotext
88PTS

Nic Tartaglia Montepulciano 2017

Abruzzo, ItalyFrom the Adriatic coast of Abruzzo, this montepulciano was fermented and rested in stainless. Clean and straight, with some muddied plum, cherry, wild herbs, and sticky tannins, this is an easy pick for mid-week burgers.Prices:
Italy$14.00750ml
Producer: Nic Tartaglia
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Nic Tartaglia Cerasuolo d'Abruzzotext
87PTS

Nic Tartaglia Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo 2020

Abruzzo, ItalyCerasuolo d'Abruzzo is a relatively recent DOC in central Italy's Abruzzo, and is a category named for the light and graceful cherry-like colour of these wines (cerasuolo means cherry in Italian). Take this as a cross between a rosé and a very light red, with ample sweet wild strawberry, orange, and a wash of bergamot on the saline finish. This simple wine is ready for cracking now with tapas.Prices:
Italy$14.00750ml
Producer: Nic Tartaglia
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01 February 2022

Lake Sonoma Zinfandeltext
89PTS

Lake Sonoma Zinfandel 2018

Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California, United StatesSourced from Dry Creek Valley, this bold, lifted zin shows a combination of sweet dark berries and cinnamon spices, with balanced, integrated oak. It's ripe, to be sure, but there's also a freshness to the fruit, striking a perfect balance for this style of wine: soft and smooth, but still juicy. A winner from Lake Sonoma at a fair price.Prices:
BC$24.49750ml
AB$25.50750ml
QC$26.00750ml
ON$29.00750ml
NB$29.79750ml
PEI$30.25750ml
Producer: Lake Sonoma Winery
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Bota Box Old Vine Zinfandeltext
87PTS

Bota Box Old Vine Zinfandel NV

California, United StatesWhat I like best about this 3-litre Bota Box of zinfandel is it tends to remain consistent in quality over the years. The nose is classic brambly, sweet blackberry, and red currant with a fine streak of spice. The attack is soft with zero tannin present leading to a medium-long, fleshy finish with pepper, and cola. Hamburgers, pork chops, beef kabobs, tacos all work here. A simple, well-made, ready to drink zin for the backyard barbecue party. Good value at $11.50 / bottle in a very green recyclable package.Prices:
BC$34.793000ml
Producer: Bota Box Vintners
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