Sunday, October 25, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Friday, October 2, 2009
Riff 2008 Pinot Grigio (IGT Venetzia)
The Alto Adige looks amazingly beautiful and through a quirk of nature - climate and soils along with Germanic efficiency make this region one to watch.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
To pair up the wines I made a deconstructed Insalata Caprese salad with Black Zebra, Mandarin Cross, and Texas Star tomatoes, some local Mozzarella di Bufala http://www.naturalpastures.com/mozzadibufala from Vancouver Island, fresh basil from my balcony planter, and an amazing Crete olive oil from Terra Creta http://www.terrgreta.gr/. The combination of flavours and textures worked well with both wines. The Mozzarella with its rich creaminess balanced the acidity in both the wine and tomatoes. The Crete olive oil with its Spanish like richness but slightly Tuscan peppiness played well with the ingredients on the plate and added some extra dimension to the wine and food pairing.
Allan Scott 2007 Marlborough 20.99 CDN$
Light gold with vibrant aromas of guava, mineral, and subtle grassy-herbal notes. Medium-bodied, crisp, well-balanced with a nice texture, and flavours of passion fruit, subtle capsicum, and a grapefruit lemony finish. Good value.
Spy Valley 2007 Marlborough $ unknown
A jet setting UK friend dropped this one off for me. Pale straw colour with complex aromas of passion fruit, gooseberry, melon, and an almost Loire like minerality. Medium to full-bodied, powerful and intense flavours of gooseberry, passion fruit, and ripe melon. A bigger more complex style than the Allan Scott. Beautifully made.
Both wines worked extremely well with the salad but the head's up goes to the Spy Valley for added complexity with the dish. While the heirloom tomato season lasts get to your local farmer's markets and take advantage of real and flavourful tomatoes. In Vancouver you can find information on all local markets at: http://www.eatlocal.org/
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Winemaker Marc Kent commented on the meteoric rise of red varietals especially Shiraz/Syrah in the last two decades. From 1990 to 1998 red production has risen from 18% to 48% and Shiraz from 1% of total production to just over 18%. Marc mentioned the long history of South Africa as the nine largest wine producer globally and the oldest of the new world wine regions. In his opinion Shiraz is the future varietal for SA.
Here are my tasting notes. Chef and Sommelier Dino Renaerts prepared a tasty wine paired lunch to show off the aromatic and savoury flavour elements of the red wines.
Straw yellow with fine mousse and subtle yeast and green apple aromas. Light-bodied, green apple, subtle minerality notes in the soft middle with a crisp dry finish.
Straw green with subtle green bean and melon aromas. Light-bodied and round with notes of melon, apple, and a hint of mineral. Crisp finish. A delicate non aggressive SB style.
Boekenhoutskloof The Wolftrap 2008 $14.99 CDN
Ruby with good depth of colour and aromas of raisin and cassis. Medium-bodied with a lush smooth texture and flavours of spice, blackberry, black cherry, and hints of raisin. Good value.
Excelsior Paddock Shiraz 2006 $15.99 CDN
Ruby with ripe spice aromas. Medium-bodied, subtle tannins and ripe blackberry, raisin, and spice notes.
Porcupine Ridge Syrah 2007 $17.99 CDN
Ruby purple with cedar aromas. Medium-bodied with some chewy tannins, decent concentration of flavour, and notes reminiscent of spice, pepper, and cherry. Rhone styled.
Ruby purple with exotic spice aromas. Full-bodied and complex with Australian fruit forward styling and flavours of warm sweet spice, vanilla, and ripe cassis.
Ruby purple and aromas of plum, spice, and coffee. Full-bodied , chewy, and concentrated with plum, orange pekoe tea, roasted coffee, chocolate and blueberry flavours. Languedoc in style.
Robertson Constitution Road Shiraz 2005 $39.99 CDN
Ruby purple with roasted earth, savoury herb, and a pronounced white pepper aroma. Full-bodied, chewy tannins, and flavours of white pepper, spice, meat, and vanilla. Rhone styled
Thelema Mountain Shiraz 204 $34.99 CDN
Ruby purple with a complex nose of sweet spice and savoury meatiness. Full-bodied with ripe blackberry, chocolate orange, spice, cassis, and cedar. Elegant and complex.
Ruby with cedar aromas. Full-bodied, lush, and concentrated with pepper, spice, cassis, and blueberry flavours. Complex and layered with a Rhone style bent.
- Goat cheese croquette with tomato chutney
- Porcupine Ridge Sauvignon Blanc
- Tomato foam and pea puree
- Graham Beck Brut
- Spiced beef slider
- Porcupine Ridge Syrah
- Brasied beef & mushroom wellington
- Glen Carlou Syrah
- Duck confit & lentils
- Boekenhoutskloof The WolfTrap
- Seared flank steak cube with port glazed shallot jam
- Boekenhoutsloof The Chocolate Block
- Valrhona chocolate pudding
- Boekenhoutsloof Syrah
Monday, April 13, 2009
Detailed information on the wines and estate itself are available at:http://www.coltibuono.com/ prices are in Canadian dollars and most wines are not available in the BC market at this time.
Cancelli Rosso Toscano IGT 2007 approx $21
Ruby red with aromas of red Cherry and black pepper.
Light-bodied and soft with lush ripe fruit and notes of pepper and earth. Easy drinking red. 70% Sangiovese and 30% Syrah.
RS Chianti Classico 2006 $23.95
Cherry red colour and aromas of cherry and herbs. Medium-bodied with soft tannins and good acidity and lush red cherry, plum, pepper, and savoury herb flavours. Multi-grower blend with approximately three months inf French Allier oak.
Badia a Coltibuono Chianti Classico 2006 approx $36
Ruby red with aromas of cherry, tobacco, and violets. Medium-bodied, good concentration and chewy tannins and flavours of cherry, leather, earth. Good complexity. Organic
Badia a Coltibuono Chianti Classico Riserva 2005 approx. $70
Cherry red with a complex nose of smoke, mineral, cherry, and flowers.
Full-bodied, chewy tannins, complex and layered with spice, vanilla, tea, and leather. Organic, 90% Sangiovese, 24 months in French & Austrian oak.
Cultus Boni Chianti Classico 2004 approx. $47
Ruby red with good depth and amazing fresh liquorice aromas with hints of cedar and chocolate. Full-bodied, lush, and round, chewy tannins and flavours of liquorice, chocolate, cherry, and tea. 80% Sangiovese and 5% Merlot.
Sangioveto 2004 IGT approx. $80
Ruby purple with aromas of violets, spice, red currant aromas. Full-bodied, rich, but with soft tannins and flavours of tobacco, chocolate, violets, and cherry. Not super complex compared to other vintages. Organic, 100% Sangiovese, 12 months French oak, 25% new.
Vin Santo del Chianti Classico 2003 375ml $41.99
Amber gold with honeyed nut aromas. Full-bodied and concentrated with sweet barley sugar, dried apricot, and honeyed nut flavours. 50% Trebbiano, 50% Malvasia, 4 years mixed cask/oak ageing.
Hops: Amarillo. Yellow gold colour with good carbonation and lacing. Complex nose of citrusy hops, pine, and apple. Medium-bodied, dry, and crisp with typical IPA flavours, not too bitter, but refreshing with lemon, grapefruit, and subtle pepper flavours. Try this one with a tandoori, grilled fish and white meats, and spicy BBQ sausages.
Hops: Cascade and Willamette. One of my Rogue favourites! Golden mahogany colour with malty, pepper, and subtle smokey aromas. Medium-bodied, creamy textured with nice balance of hops, malt, and chipolte. Intriguing to drink, the lovely smokey peppery notes, kick in about 5-8 seconds after swallowing. Try this one with BBQ red meats, bison burgers with blue cheese, Tex-Mex cuisine, and for a real but very tasty shocker! dark chocolate.
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
Ricossa Barbera d'Asti 2006
Ruby red with typical text book aromas of red cherry and subtle blueberry notes. Light to medium-bodied with a lush textured balanced by good acidity and decent length of flavour (blueberry, red cherry, and pepper). Decent value 15.97 CDN$
Renata Fenocchio Barbera d'Alba 2006
Ruby purple with good depth of colour. Black cherry and minerally earth aromas. Full-bodied and concentrated with spice, black cherry, damson plum, and a sour cherry and vanilla note in the long finish. Nice balance of ripe fruit and acidity. A classy organic artisanal Barbera. 35.00 CDN$
Fontanafredda Barbaresco 2004
Cherry red with subtle tarry aromas. Full-bodied with some chewy tannins and flavours veering from violets to cedar, mineral and lead pencil. Needs another 2 or 3 years to round out. 34.95 CDN$
Fontanafreeda Barolo 2004
Cherry red with aromas of tobacco leaf, fruit leather, and subtle tar. Full-bodied with chewy tannins, and more complex flavours than the sister Barbaresco, with cedar, red plum, black cherry, and dried floral notes. 2-3 years ageing will bring out additional complexity. 38.65 CDN$
Poderi Colla Dardi Le Rose Barolo Bussia 2004
Cherry red colour with hints of mahogany and fresh laid tar aromas - classic. Full-bodied, chewy, and complex with layers of dried rose, prune, fig, violets, black cherry, black plum, and tar. Complex Bussia cru styling made in the "elegant" school of thought. Drinking nicely now but easily can handle the cellar until 2014 to 2016. 61.99 CDN$
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Cipes Ice Wine Dosage Sparkling NV $44.95
Small persistent bubbles and good mousse and lovely cherry copper colour. Aromas of raspberry and baked apples. On the palate this BC bubble is medium-bodied with ripe berry notes of strawberry, cherry, and ripe Pinot Noir fruit. The crisp acidity balances the slightly sweet honeyed undertones of the ice wine dosage. Try this one with BBQ duck or Asian inspired dishes with a sweet element. Made from organic grapes. http://www.summerhill.bc.ca/
Twisted Tree Tempranillo 2007 $27.90
Deep cherry red with aromas of strawberry leaf, green tobacco, and subtle leathery notes. Medium-bodied and rounder than a Spanish Tempranillo with flavours of strawberry, raspberry, chocolate, and hints of cherry. Nice pairing with herbed lamb chops or curiously with Schezuan peppercorn chocolate truffles. French barrique aged and the inaugural vintage of this varietal from Twisted Tree. 13.9% abv http://www.twistedtree.ca/
Pinotage 2007 $24.99
Ruby red colour with typical and appealing Pinotage aromas of bacon fat and smoke. Medium-bodied, lushly textured, and complexly layered with flavours of raspberry, autumnal smoke, earth, spice, and mixed wild blackberries. This one will give South African a run for its flavour complexity. 100% American oak ageing for 8 and 1/2 months.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Monday, February 9, 2009
2 hours flying time and 600km East by Dash 8's from Sydney is the World Heritage Site: Lord Howe Island - home to over 130 species of birds, 500 species of fish, and 90 different corals. The island is not a resort island; visitor numbers are strictly limited to 400 and it is one of the cleanest places on earth with no air or sea pollution or litter. Lord Howe is easily walkable it is 11km long and 2.8 km wide. Neds Beach, a popular favourite, was voted Australia's cleanest beach. No camping is allowed and all accommodation is run by the local population and must be pre-confirmed before booking a flight to the Island. Accommodation runs from self catering cottages, B&B's, guest houses, and a of couple boutique luxury lodges. During our stay we opted for a three night stay at the luxury Capella Lodge isolated from the rest of the island with its amazing twin peak views of the 6.4 million year old Mount Lidgbird (777 m) and Mount Gower (875 m) on the southern end of the island. The nine suites have magificent views of the Mountains, lush Kentia palms or aquamarine ocean and reefs.The contemporary suites are a luxurious refuge with light timber floors, white shutters, marine fixtures and a sophisticated beach house feel. The suites have king size beds with a selection of pillows along with a CD player, TV ( 3 channels), DVD player - there is a large library of DVD's in the bar , telephone and room bar. En suites offer a bath and rain shower and premium Australian toiletries. Beach towels, bathrobes and knack sacks are provided as is daily housekeeping and evening turn down service. Capella has guest space for just twenty so you're on a first name basis with staff the first night. There are a total of nine rooms, one suitable for children, and you are offered a gourmet breakfast and three course dinner each day of your stay.
BBQ's around the island. The restaurant and bar have a great selection of cocktails, wines, and beers. Late night need for a drink - the bar is on an honour system. The lodge offers complimentary wifi, mountain bikes, a motorised golf cart, snorkeling equipment, and kayaks to all guests. You cannot use a mobile phone on the island - there is no service.
services available. Food during our stay was a Modern Australian - a mixture of Australian, Asian, and European. Highlights of the island including feeding King fish at Neds Beach, hiking up Mount Gower, and seeing the elusive and flightless woodhen. Rates vary from $590 AUS per person per night to $1230 AUS during high season. http://www.lordhowe.com/
Lord Howe Island - "One of the 100 places to visit before you die"