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, July 26, 2012

Wine for the Weekend

Last weekend was chock full of great activities including a trip to the Northwood Zoo and Animal Sanctuary in Seagrave, Ontario (1 hr northeast of Toronto on the outskirts of Port Perry).  Never before have we been able to get this close to such a variety of animals which included: lions, tigers, a wolf, and grizzly bears.  The kids were thrilled to pet the 4-month old lion cub and the highlight for me was a long conversation with Moe the Camel - nice guy to chat with but wow, how about a mint for that breath [video above] :)  If you have a free day this summer I highly recommend an afternoon at the Northwood Zoo.

In this edition of wine for the weekend I feel the need to recommend something in the form of a Spanish red – I’m thinking Garnacha though instead of the normal Tempranillo.  Our white selection this week is an unusual variety (for Canada). We really don’t feature enough BC wines on the store shelves here in Ontario, and with that in mind, I have a interesting wine from the beautiful Okanagan Valley on Canada’s west coast. 

Our Wine Spot is courtesy of a good friend of North of 9 and diehard wine enthusiast who’s palate (I believe) leans toward the jammy reds of California, though I will state with confidence that Gary’s true passion is for a properly chilled pint of craft beer.     


2008 Mt. Boucherie Estate Collection Semillon – Okanagan Valley, British Columbia

One of the key grapes in white Bordeaux wines both sweet and dry.  In BC’s Okanagan, the Semillon shows a mix of honeyed and earthy aromas that lead to exotics tastes of citrus, mint, and herbs.  A wine to pair with pan-seared scallops. $19.95 (279364) Vintages (dry)

2009 Las Rocas Garnacha – Calatayud, Spain

Sourcing this wine from 80-year-old vines adds a greater degree of complexity and concentration.  Aromas of raspberry and cherry followed up by a medium body of plums, chocolate, and a hint of spice.  Try it with ribs on the bbq or sharp cheeses.  $14.95 (269997) Vintages (dry)


VINTAGES 287193 | California
750 mL bottle | $24.95

Gary recalls: We tried this Zinfandel on at a friend’s cottage on Lake of Bays and it was very nice:  lots of black fruit, a bit of pepper/spice and jammy as you would expect – certainly easy drinking.  I would pair this Zin with chicken breast romarin marinated for a morning in finely chopped rosemary with ground pepper mixed into salt free butter and then spread over the chicken; top with a sprinkling of EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil) and placed in the fridge for several hours.  

To accompany the dish, Gary also recommends sauté chopped beet leaves in olive oil, mashed garlic, a touch of oregano and a squeeze of lemon juice upon serving.  Local new potatoes cut to fingerlings are also special at this time of year, perhaps toss them in parsley and butter with a dash of salt and pepper to taste. Add cooked beets tossed in a white wine vinegar/sugar dressing mixture of 4:1 to a maximum of a 1/4 cup.

Thanks for the Wine Spot Gary!

~> 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 thoughts and I’ll publish it in a future edition of Wine for the Weekend.