All of my picks are from the LCBO Vintages magazine for the release date of Saturday, February 4. If you have a magazine already, feel free to make notes, just like I do.
White Wine Picks
On page 36 is the 2009 Maison Roche de Bellene Vielles Vignes Meursault from Burgundy, France. This is a wonderful Chardonnay with nice fruit notes integrated with a touch of oak, great acidity and balance this is you wine. Imagine it with pickerel or red snapper done in a white wine sauce. A solid 9 points. Price is $48.95 and this wine can age for another 5 years.
Also on page 39 is the 2009 Domaine Fouassier Les Grands Groux Sancerre from the Loire Valley in France. If you love Sauvignon Blanc than this is a beautiful wine that has nice notes of fresh herbs, crisp apple and gardenia on the nose. The finish on this wine lingers on and on. Amazing, 9 points. Price is 24.95. This is a drink now wine and will not improve with age.
On page 30 is one of my favourites from Oregon, its the 2009 A to Z Pinot Gris. This is a bone dry Pinot Gris that is full of flavour and spicy richness. If you have a friend that loves Pinot Grigio this is a great alternative and it’s only $19.95. Another drink now wine that is great match with chicken or fish. I give it 8.5.
Red Wine Picks
My first pick of the reds is my Crowd Pleaser wine – buy this wine and everyone will love it, so turn to page 32. It is the 2010 Vina Cobos Felino Merlot from Mendoza, Argentina. Now before you tell me that you don’t drink Merlot, you must know that renowned wine maker Paul Hobbs from California consulted on this wine and it’s a bargain at $19.95. Look for delicious ripe fruit, vanilla, baking spices and baked plums on the nose and on the palate. Very smooth finish. I give it 8.5 points and recommend picking up a few bottles. Great with any grilled red meats.
Keeping with steak, I have your Steak Night wine. If you turn back one page to 31, it is the 2008 Decero Remolinos Vineyard Malbec, Mendoza, Argentina packed with juicy black fruits and nice chewy tannins on the finish. This wine is ready to drink now and is only $22.95.
My Cellar Pick for this month is on page 37, the 2008 Les Hauts de Smith from the Pessac-Leognan region in Bordeaux. This is the second wine of Chateau Smith Haut Lafite. Look for notes of cassis, cigar box and ripe black fruits. If you must open it now, I recommend 2 hours of decanting but if you can give it another 5 to 10 years you will not be disappointed. Great value at $36.95 and I give it a 9.
My Pizza Night wine this month is on page 40 the 2007 Leone de Castris Riserva Salice Salentino. Over all good value wine with nice fruit with smooth tannins. Only $17.95 and I give an 8.
My Brunello Pick is on page 40, the 2005 Corte Pavone Brunello di Montalcino. This had the wow factor for me showing notes of tilled earth, leather, tobacco and sour cherry. Very grippy tannins. Can age for 10+ years or if you enjoy tonight make sure you decant it for at least 2 hours! Would be great with lamb or any game dishes. This wine deserves a 9.5.
My Tuesday Night Special is on page 41, the 2010 Cortes de Cima Chamine from Portugal. It’s a blend of Tempranillo, Syrah, Touriga Nacional, Trincaderia and Cabernet Sauvignon. Bright red fruit such as cherry and raspberry were dominate here but the finish was very balanced. Only 15.95 and it gets an 8.5.
My Surprise Pick is on page 18 with the 2008 KirYanni Ramnista Xinomavro (“see-no-ma-vro”) from Greece. A very savoury wine with sour cherry, spice and vanilla notes. Great chewy tannins and would be delicious with flat iron steak. Only $18.95 and it gets a solid 9 points.
And finally, lets talk briefly about this month’s Usual Suspects which are the 2009 Decoy Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2009 Frog’s Leap Cabernet Sauvignon and the 2009 Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon. All are very approachable and ready to drink now. With the exception of Frog’s Leap, this wine can age another 3 – 5 years. If you are fan of any of these wines, you will not be disappointed!
Until the next LCBO Vintages release on February 18, enjoy good wine, good food and good health!