This is a very exciting Vintages release here in Ontario. Lots of great wines; white, reds and spirits, especially if you are into Grappa. Here are a few of my choices:
Tawse Winery – They have released their Echos White and Red, Riesling and Cabernet Franc all of which are true gems. This amazing boutique winery in Niagara is situated on the Beamsville Bench and I can guarantee you these wines will sell out fast.2005 J.Lohr Cabernet Sauvignon – They have released both there 750 ml and 1.5L at $19.95 and $39.95 respectively. I’ll be picking up a few of their 1.5L bottles for Christmas gifts and parties this season. 2004 Joseph Phelps Cabernet Sauvignon – It’s not the Insignia but it’s pretty darn close. Either blow the budget on the 1.5L at $149.95 or try out the half bottle (375 ml) for $39.95.Australia – If you are an Aussie fan, I would try the 2006 Two Hands Gnarly Dudes from the Barossa Valley. Very consistent producer who makes wine from very ripe fruit with great structure. If you are Robert Parker fan, he gave the Kilikanoon The Lacey Shiraz 2005, 90 points, and at $17.95 this is real bargain. He also gave Yalumba The Signature Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz 2006 96 points and it is only $44.95.Italy – My go-to wine is none other than Sa’ Solin Ripasso Della Valpolicella 2004, $15.95. This wine gets released every couple of months and I always pick up a few bottles. I love pairing this wine with pizza and spaghetti with meatballs, it also holds up nicely with some hard cheeses too. My splurge here would be the 2003 Antinori Solaia but at $149.95 if you are not going to lay this one down for a few years, then definitely save your money! For Grappa, have a look at the Antinori Tignanello Grappa for $82.95 that is distilled from the left over grapes used for the Tignanello!France – If you like unoaked Chardonnay try William Fevre Chablis Montmains 2005, $32.95. This is a premier cru Chablis and William Fevre is an excellent producer. For reds, I would suggest the Maison Champy Bourgogne Signature Pinot Noir 2000 that drinks like a New World wine with lots of berry fruit and it’s only $18.95.Unique and Interesting – Definitely the R. Lopez De Heredia Vina Bosconia Reserva 2000, $34.95. This wine from Rioja made from primarily Tempranillo grapes is aged in oak barrels for 36 months then 3-5 years in the bottle before it is released. Can’t wait to see how this one is drinking. Also curious in trying the Chateau De Candale 2000 from the Haut-Medoc in Bordeaux. For $35.95 for a 7 year old Bordeaux that apparently “rivals many much pricier Bordeauxs”, the only way to know for sure it to try it yourself. Happy drinking this weekend!