How I make my selections...

Rarely will I publish a review of a wine that I did not enjoy; my taste is purely individual, as is your own. If I write about a particular wine, I do so because I also want you to try it.

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Wine for the Weekend

Last weekend was spent praying for rain that never came.  I am constantly amazed how the clouds circumnavigate our tiny hilltop community and yet it rains… no, it pours all around us.  Our lawn is beginning to reflect the colour of a well-aged bottle of $8 Chardonnay. For that reason, I will not be recommending any Chardonnay this week!  

In this edition of Wine for the Weekend, we explore a very common grape grown in France, though I believe this may be the only varietal (unblended) example here in Ontario.  I normally wouldn't plug two local wines in the same post, but while visiting my parents last weekend, Dad popped an exceptional quality Pinot from Canada’s southern-most land mass.

Lydia will have you menu planning to beat the heat with this week's Wine Spot, and we can certainly use that advice right now! 

Of course, all three bottles are priced well under $20. 


2009 Chateau Des Charmes, Aligoté – Niagara Peninsula

Here is a wine that is made from a lesser known French variety called Aligoté.  In Burgundy, they grow Aligoté everywhere that Pinot Noir and Chardonnay refuse to perform.  It is famous for its lighter body and easy drinking/carefree and somewhat acidic edge.  I’m curious what you think of the only varietal example bottled here in Ontario.  Expect green apple and pear on the nose with a mix of clean acidity on the palate with refreshing mineral notes and a dry finish. 
 $10.65 (284950) Vintages (very dry)

2010 Alvar, Pinot Noir – Pelee Island, Ontario

There would seem to be a newfound connection in Ontario between the cool climate Pinot Noir and our land.  This example offers well above average complexity for an unheard of value in the world of the heartbreak grape.   I actually had to take a second look at the label to believe where it was from.  Delicate cherry and plum, plus the correct amount of wood influence to remain transparent; cinnamon spice and velvet tannins; fantastic in every way; and for only $15!
$14.95 (458521) LCBO General list (dry)

This weekend’s Wine Spot comes to us from Toronto. where Lydia has kindly found a refreshing bottle of Cava to help everyone beat the heat.  I don’t think she could have timed this any better! 

Lydia suggests pairing a bottle of Spanish Segura Viudas Cava with your dinner outside on the patio.  She notes that the light refreshing taste profile of this style pairs very well with salads, seafood, and lighter-type dishes.  ‘When the weather is hot, we like to drink this refreshing sparkler instead of a still wine.’  Great idea Lydia, and thanks for the Wine Spot!  - I can’t believe that I have not tried this wine before.  It’s only $14 and receives rave reviews online.

~> I’d love to hear your thoughts on a food & wine pairing:  What is your favourite dish?  And which wine highlights the flavours of the food?  Send me a quick note with your Wine Spot and I’ll publish it in a future edition of Wine for the Weekend.

I've just posted a new article that defuses much of the complexity associated with Burgundy and its wines.  Please take a moment to read: Translating Burgundy