NIAGARA COLLEGE TEACHING WINERY BALANCED BLANC DE BLANC BRUT 2014, Traditional Method, VQA St. David’s Bench, Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada


 

 

 

Cost: $27.15
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: Winery
Country: Canada
Region: St. David’s Bench, Niagara Region
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Niagara College Teaching Winery
Alcohol: 12.0 % Alcohol/Vol.

Clean, dry but refreshing with cool climate flavours

Positives: Light gold in colour with a fine mousse that features light brioche, lemon, green apples, pear, grapefruit & dragon fruit.

Negatives: None

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with baked brie and strawberry jam.

My Opinion: Recommended

Tasted: June 23, 2019

CHAPEL DOWN CLASSIC NON-VINTAGE BRUT, TRADITIONAL BOTTLE FERMENTED, NV, Tenterden, England


Cost: $49.00
Grape: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Meunier
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: England
Region: Tenterden
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Chapel Down
Alcohol: 12.0 % Alcohol/Vol.

An elegant English sparkling wine that is a treat at the LCBO stores now, and worth the price

Positives: Light gold in with a fine mousse that features brioche, buttered toast, fresh baked bread, lemon, red apples, lemon grass, quince, English cucumber, strawberry and rose pedals on the nose.

Negatives: None

Interesting Point: Need to thank my daughter, Sarah, for this wine being my Father’s Day present.

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with President Choice Maple flavoured bacon.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Top Pick

Tasted: June 22, 2019

LCBO: 635185

RIVAROSE BRUT SPARKLING ROSÉ NV, IGP Salon De Provence, Mediterranee, Provence, France


Cost: $18.95
Grape: 50% Grenache, %50 Syrah
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: France
Region: Salon De Provence, Mediterranee, Provence
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Rivarose
Alcohol: 12.0 % Alcohol/Vol.

Refreshing Provence sparkling rosé that glides easily over the palate

Positives: Rose gold in with a fine mousse that features raspberry, pink grapefruit, nectarine, honey and almond nugget.

Negatives: None

Interesting Point: Established in 1909, Rivarose is situated in Salon De Provence, and is now Provence’s oldest and largest producer in sparkling wines.

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with omelette.

My Opinion: Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: June 22, 2019

LCBO: 515288

PONGRÁZ CAP CLASSIQUE ROSÉ BRUIT NV, WO Western Cape, South Africa


Cost: $18.95
Grape: Chardonnay & Pinot Noir
Category: White Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: South Africa
Region: Western Cape
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Cave de Pongráz
Alcohol: 12.5 % Alcohol/Vol.

One of the best  traditional method rosés under $30, & this wine is under $20!. It’s an almost bone dry rosé with wonderful red berries & classic brioche

Positives: Copper in colour with a fine mousse. Wine features brioche, biscuit, raspberries, strawberries, dragon fruit and kiwi.

Negatives: None

Interesting Point: Original tasting review July 24, 2016

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with calamari.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: June 8, 2019

LCBO: 646968

 

DE WETSHOF BON VALLON UNWOOD CHARDONNAY 2017, Wo Robertson, South Africa


Cost: $22.95 (Sale price $19.95 until June 23, 2019)
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: White Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: South Africa
Region: Robertson
Format: 750 mL
Producer: De Wetshof
Alcohol: 13.0 % Alcohol/Vol.

An unwooded Chard that has citrus, orchard fruit & minerality all at a great price. A great option over Chablis.

Positives: Light gold with a green tinge that features lemon, green apples, pear, guava, pear and limestone.

Negatives: None

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with raw oysters.

My Opinion: Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: June 4, 2019

LCBO: 403675

NIAGARA COLLEGE TEACHING WINERY COLLEGE ROSÉ 2018, VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $14.15
Grape: 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Gamay
Category: Rosé Wine
Location: Winery
Country: Canada
Region: Niagara Peninsula
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Niagara College Teaching Winery
Alcohol: 13.0 % Alcohol/Vol.

Full flavoured, crisp Rosé with a great price & quality that makes this a top Canadian Rosé

Positives: Pomegranate in colour this wine features Bing cherries, strawberries, Fuji apples, cranberries with roses on the nose.

Negatives: None

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 2-3 years on its own or pair it with calamari.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Top Pick, Best Buy & Amazing Pick

Tasted: May 27, 2019

ANTECH-LIMOUX EXPRESSION CRÉMANT DE LIMOUX BRUT 2015, Traditional Method, AC Limoux, Languedoc, France


Cost: $19.95
Grape: Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Mauzac
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: France
Region: Limoux
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Antech-Limoux
Alcohol: 12.0 % Alcohol/Vol.

This pleasant vintage Blanc de Blanc is complex, creamy, fresh & clean

Positives: Light gold a green tinge with a fine mousse. Wine features light yeast, brioche, lemon-lime, honeydew melon, green apples, Spy Apple & Napoleon Custard.

Negatives: None

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with blackened Mahi Mahi.

My Opinion: Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: June 2, 2019

LCBO: 68239

CHÂTEAU DES CHARMES BRUT SPARKLING WINE NV, Méthode Traditionnelle, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $25.95 (Sale price until May 26, 2019: $22.95)
Grape: Chardonnay & Pinot Noir
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Canada
Region: Niagara-On-The-Lake
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Château Des Charmes
Alcohol: 12.5 % Alcohol/Vol.

Consistently a stellar performer every year being bright, fresh & zesty

Positives: Light gold with a fine mousse that features brioche, light yeast, toasty apples, lemon-lime, green apples, peach, pear and lemon meringue on the nose.

Negatives: None

Interesting Point: Original tasting review July 24, 2016

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 3-5 years on its own or pair it with Devilled eggs.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Top Pick

Tasted: May 25, 2019

LCBO: 224766

SAN PEDRO 1865 SELECT VINEYARDS CARMENÈRE 2016, DO Valley Del Maule, Chile


Cost: $19.95
Grape: Carmenère
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Chile
Region: Valley Del Maule
Format: 750 mL
Producer: San Pedro
Alcohol: 14.5 % Alcohol/Vol.

Juicy, bright, green & spicy

Positives: Wine features blackcurrants, blueberries, raspberries, green pepper, arugula & black tea.

Negatives: High alcohol of 14.5

Interesting Point: Not my cup of tea, but others may like it.

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 3-5 years on its own or pair it with beef brisket.

My Opinion: One the fence

Tasted: May 24, 2019

LANDER-JENKINS CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2017, California, United States


Cost: $19.95
Grape: Cabernet Sauvignon blend
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: United States
Region: California
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Rutherford Wine Company
Alcohol: 13.5 % Alcohol/Vol.

Wine approaches the typical commercial California red sweeter side, but then it retreats to open up to a nice array of fruits & tertiary notes without the typical high alcohol

Positives: Wine features kirsch, blackberries, mulberries, raspberries, plums, cranberry, toffee, tobacco leaves and smoked tobacco on the nose.

Negatives: None

Interesting Point: I bought this wine because I like there motto on the back of the label: “Family Owned, Family farmed. Good for the land. Good for the grapes. Good for the wine.

Ageability: Drink now or over the next 3-5 years on its own or pair it with Osso Buco.

My Opinion: Recommended

Top Pick

Tasted: May 15, 2019

LCBO: 161398