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, August 30, 2012

Wine for the Weekend

Did you manage to find a bottle of that Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise I recommended last week?  Wasn’t that awesome!  A case has just arrived at the Newmarket LCBO for those in the area.  Grab it before it's gone!  

I spent last weekend on the road which unfortunately takes me away from my family, though it does present the opportunity to purchase a few bottles out-of-province.  Elderton Command 2005 was my score in Edmonton on Saturday afternoon. 

I’m in a bind this week:  I’ve got too many wines that need your attention.  They’re all from South America with the first being a Chilean in the form of Sauvignon Blanc and a really top-notch example at that.  But I’ve also stumbled upon a very classy Chardonnay from Argentina for only $11; you’ll need to try that one as well :)  Better yet, how about a bottle of Merlot – also from Chile – I enjoyed this one so much, that it prompted me to write about the grape in a new article via  The piece generated a nice compliment from Rex Pickett, author of the book Sideways and the story behind the hit movie.  I’ll link you up a little later in the post.        

Thanks for reading and enjoy the wine!

2011 Veramonte, La Gloria Sauvignon Blanc Reserva – Casablanca Valley, Chile

I have no idea who Gloria is, but let me assure you that she crafts a very fine Sauvignon in the cool climate of Chile’s Casablanca Valley.  Fragrant, crisp, and simply delicious; expect a lovely balance between the grassy herbal character and a flint-like minerality combined with lime and grapefruit citrus plus generous acidity to pair with a multitude of food styles.  Try with seafood, lemon chicken, and spicy Asian dishes.  Highly drinkable and not to be missed!  $12.95 (602649) General list – dry

2009 Concha Y Toro, Marques de Casa Concha Merlot – Rapel Valley, Chile

Typically softer than the big reds that we so easily recognize.  Dark fruit aromas in this example and hints of spice that entice your senses. Medium bodied and quite dry with a good balance between the fruit and acidity.   Plush yet lively to taste; fresh from beginning to end; a welcome taste.  Enjoy with roast chicken or sip it solo as the cool weather approaches.  $19.95 (939827) Vintages – very dry

2010 Finca El Origen Chardonnay – Mendoza, Argentina
750mL | LCBO #269993 | $10.95

I had the opportunity to taste this wine with Finca El Origen’s winemaker Gonzalo Bertelsen and a select group from the WineAlign team at a luncheon downtown this week.  To put it bluntly, there are a number of Chardonnay examples available in the $10 range that leave you with a feeling of inadequacy in terms of quality.  Far too many over-cropped and heavily oaked ho-hum wines leave drinkers with little option other that to move on to alternate grape varieties with hopes of discovering something significantly more captivating – until now… The 2010 Finca El Origen Chardonnay from Mendoza Argentina is a stunning example of the grape and at $10.95 is arguably the best in its class at the LCBO.   

My notes: 

The wine glistens in the light reflecting both its purity and clarity.  The colour is bright yellow with green hues at the shoulders.  Aromas only hint at oak influence with more focus on sweet ripe melon and lemon as a prelude to the clean, cool climate mineral texture and beautifully balanced acidity. Lovely combinations of citrus and herbal notes on the palate with a touch of creaminess and a slightly spiced finish.  There is a degree of complexity here that elevates this wine well above others in the price range.  Very enjoyable and a fantastic value.  

Link to the LCBO product availability for 2010 Finca El Origen Chardonnay

- “Terrific article, Tyler.  I learned a few new things.”  
Rex Pickett – author of Sideways

~> 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.