Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Calamus Estate Winery 2005 Calamus Red - $13.00 (till May 31st)

Here’s another great red from the now award winning Calamus Estate (they picked up two Golds at the recent Ontario Wine Awards); not as bold and powerful as their Meritage, but this is one packs enough stuffing to be considered a fabulous wine indeed. 62% Cabernet Franc and 38% Cabernet Sauvignon (all the Merlot when into the Meritage blend), this red has dark fruit written all over it: cassis, black raspberry, sour cherry along with some cinnamon and oak notes. The palate seems smooth at first with blackberry, black cherry and sweet oak; with vanilla and cherry rounding off the finish. After two hours of being open, chocolate joins the vanilla and cherry on the back nine (so to speak) making sure you go home happy – it’s there and it’s tasty. There’s also enough tannin and acidity to consider lying this one down in the cellar a few years. Good for pizza and pasta nights, as well as burgers and steak … this is truly a multi-purpose red that’s delicious and wonderfully cork-free so you can crack it anywhere. Act now because as of June 1st, 2007 this wine goes up to $15.00 … don’t miss out on this steal of a deal.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Fielding Estate Winery 2006 Fume Blanc - $24.00

It’s rare that I write a review with a specific person in mind; but this one seems justified, afterall birthdays come round but once a year, and so rarely do they fall on Weekly Wine Note day … you know who you are so this one’s for you. Fielding launched nine wines over the weekend of April 14, 2007: 6 whites, 2 reds and a rose. Among the wines on that list was their first ever Sauvignon Blanc; but instead of making just one for the inaugural vintage they decided to go all out and make two: a regular (stainless steel version) and a fume (aged minimally in barrel to give it some oak characteristics). While the regular Sauvignon Blanc is good, I think I like the Fume better. Aged in 4-year-old refurbished red wine barrels, that were stripped, “sanded” and re-assembled with no toasting inside (to avoid imparting too much smokiness into the wine). New winemaker (for Fielding) Ray Cornell, has done a wonderful job on this wine. The nose is nuanced with muted lime and grassiness; but where this wine really shines is in your mouth. Typical Sauvignon Blanc citrus and grassy flavours mix well with the spices and butteryness taken from the barrel, all rounded off with a nice lingering finish. Very nice job Ray, very nice indeed. And by the way, my Sauvignon Blanc loving friend, Happy Birthday. Available at the winery only.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Coyote’s Run 2005 Pinot Noir - $30.00

You have to feel a little for Coyote’s Run – after the great success of their Red Paw and Black Paw Pinot Noirs you kinda expected them to follow it up in 2005. But Pinot Noir is a cool climate loving grape and the hot dry summer of 2005 did not reward Pinot … nor did the short crop help matters any. As is often the case in the old Warner Brothers cartoons, it’s back to the drawing board for the Coyote … but instead of crying over the failure of their ACME-Rocket-Launcher, they re-organized and tried something a little different. Combining the yield from both vineyards (from the red and black soils) they have fashioned a lively ripe Pinot Noir with great red fruit and earth on the nose – mainly strawberry, raspberry and rhubarb. The aging in French oak for 12 months gives us the taste of deep rich red fruit and the earthiness we’ve come to expect. Hoping for a return of Red and Black in ’06 but for now this ’05 will do quite nicely. Available at the winery only.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Strewn Winery 2004 Cabernets - $14.95

This 55/45 blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon has soft red fruit on the nose and currant, blueberry and plum on the palate. Soft tannins makes this an easy sipper for every day consumption and the $14.95 price tag reinforces that opinion and makes for an easy recommendation. Throw in the fact that its available at the LCBO on the general list and you have a good wine you can buy anytime you need a delicious gift for friends, something easy to take to a party, or just something to enjoy yourself tonight.