FANTINI GRAN CUVÉE ROSÉ NV, Acerenza, Potenza, Italy


Cost: $19.95
Grape: Anglianico del Vulture
Category: Rosé Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Italy
Region: Acerenza, Potenza
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Farnese
Alcohol: 12% Alcohol/Vol.

Simple but a great for the beach or pool

Description: Pomegranate in colour with a medium+ intense nose. This wine features strawberry, ripe cherry, raspberry and cotton candy. Light to medium body with good acidity and an average length.

Negatives: None

Interesting Note: The label has a Swarovski crystal

Drink now or in the next couple of years on its own or pair it with BBQ Chicken and Summer Squash.

Tasted: 23 April 2017

Best Buy

Score: 8.5+/10, Value: 8.5+/10, Total: 17.5/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 3.5+

LCBO: 479352

JARDIN BARREL FERMENTED CHARDONNAY 2015, Stellenbosch, South Africa


Cost: $21.95
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: White Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: South Africa
Region: Stellenbosch
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Jordan
Alcohol: 13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

A solid, well balanced Chard

Description: Bright gold in colour with a medium to medium+ intense nose. This wine features medium toasted oak, lemon, peach, butter popcorn, almonds, ginger, dill, oak spice and white rose on the nose. Medium+ body with good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: None

Drink now or in the next 3-5 of years on its own or pair it with Salmon Poke and Crispy Plantains.

Tasted: 13 May 2017

Best Buy

Score: 9/10, Value: 9/10, Total: 18/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 4

LCBO: 663336

CHÂTEAU LAUDUC ROSÉ 2016, Ac Bordeaux, France


Cost: $14.95
Grape: 75% Cabernet Franc, %25 Merlot
Category: Rosé Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: France
Region: Bordeaux
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Château Lauduc
Alcohol: 12.5% Alcohol/Vol.

A pleasant, light, crisp & simple rosé

Description: Light copper in colour with a medium+ intense nose. This wine features raspberry, Rainier cherries, mandarin and pink rose on the nose. Light to medium body with light tannin, good acidity and an average length.

Negatives: None

Drink now or in the next couple of years on its own or pair it with Wahoo Tartare.

Tasted: 15 May 2017

Score: 8.5/10, Value: 8.5+/10, Total: 17+/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 3.5+

LCBO: 491860

CONDE VALDEMAR RESERVA 2009, DOCa Rioja, Spain


Cost: $19.95
Grape: 90% Tempranillo, 5% Mazuelo, 5% Graciano
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Spain
Region: Rioja
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Bodegas Valdemar
Alcohol: 13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

My new favourite Tempranillo Reserva; full flavoured, spicy & smokey

Description: Light to medium garnet in colour with a medium+ intense nose. This complex wine features sandalwood, cedar, plum, dried cherries, raspberry, tobacco, dried herbs, black olives, Champagne mushrooms, peppercorns, black tea and cigar box on the nose. Medium+ body with medium+ tannin, good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: None

Drink now or in the next 5-7 of years on its own or pair it with Vietnamese Smoked Pulled Pork Buns.

Tasted: 17 May 2017

Best Buy

Score: 9+/10, Value: 9+/10, Total: 18.5/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 4+

LCBO: 947309

IZADI LARROSA PREMIUM ROSÉ 2016, DOCa Rioja, Spain


Cost: $14.95
Grape: Garnacha
Category: Rosé Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Spain
Region: Rioja
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Bodegas Larrosa
Alcohol: 13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

Simple, clean, crisp & pleasant

Description: Pale salmon in colour with a medium intense nose. This wine features strawberry, white peach, pear and rose on the nose. Medium+ body with good acidity and a good length.

Negatives: None

Interesting Note: Tech sheet from Bodegas Larrosa has this as 100% Garnacha, but on it’s intro to the wine has it listed as Garnacha & Tempranillo.

Drink now or in the next couple of years on its own or pair it with Smoked Salmon Potato Tartine.

Tasted: 18 May 2017

Score: 8.5+/10, Value: 8.5+/10, Total: 17.5+/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 3.5+

LCBO: 490961

INVIVO PINOT NOIR 2014, Central Otago, New Zealand


Cost: $24.95
Grape: Pinot Noir
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: New Zealand
Region: Central Otago
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Nicolas Pearce Wines
Alcohol: 14 % Alcohol/Vol.

Lots of flavours & substance for a good price

Description: Medium ruby in colour with an intense nose. This wine features cedar, black cherry, cranberry, cloves, vanilla and peat moss on the nose. Medium body with mild tannin, good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: None

Interesting Note: Use the Pinot, balloon glass, and chill to 15C

Drink now or in the next 10 years on its own or pair it with Pot Roasted Guinea Fowl with Sage and Orange.

Tasted: 1 April 2017

Best buy

Score: 9/10, Value: 9+/10, Total: 18+/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 4

LCBO: 466029

CHÂTEAU DES DEMOISELLES 2014, Ac Castillon Côtes De Bordeaux, France


Cost: $17.95
Grape: Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: France
Region: Castillon Côtes De Bordeaux
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Ducourt
Alcohol: 13 % Alcohol/Vol.

Great Bordeaux taste at an equally great price

Description: Medium ruby in colour with an intense nose. This wine features cedar, cherry, plum, red & black currants, raspberry, anise, cloves, pencil shavings, spinach, vanilla and violets on the nose. Medium body and tannin with good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: None

Interesting Note: Slightly chill between 16-18C

Drink now or in the next 5-7 years on its own or pair it with Classic Steak-Frites.

Tasted: 10 April 2017

Best buy

Score: 8.5+/10, Value: 9+/10, Total: 18/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 4

LCBO: 348755

ROCKWAY VINEYARDS SMALL LOT RESERVE MERLOT 2010, VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario


Cost: $40.00
Grape: Merlot
Category: Red Wine
Location: Rockway Vineyards
Country: Canada
Region: Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Rockway Vineyards
Alcohol: 14.5% Alcohol/Vol.

Unfortunately not complex enough to warrant the high price

Description: Medium+ ruby to garnet in colour with a medium intense nose. This wine features cedar, Bell pepper, cherry, plum, raspberry, anise and cloves. Medium+ body with medium+ tannin, good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: Some heat from the 14.5% alcohol

Interesting Note: Screw top for an expensive wine & it’s not from Down Under.

Drink now or in the next 5 years on its own or pair it with Spicy Grilled Pork Chops.

Tasted: 5 April 2017

Not recommended

Score: 8/10, Value: 5/10, Total: 13/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 2.5

MALIVOIRE LADYBUG ROSÉ 2016, VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $16.95 (Sale price until April 23, 2017: $15.95)
Grape: 60% Cabernet Franc, 20% Pinot Noir, 20% Gamay
Category: Rosé Wine
Location: LCBO General List
Country: Canada
Region: Niagara Peninsula, Ontario
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Ducourt
Alcohol: 12.5 % Alcohol/Vol.

A solid, versatile off dry rosé

Description: Red snapper in colour with a medium to medium+ intense nose. This wine features strawberry, raspberry, maraschino cherry, pomegranate, red currants, red apples and anise. Medium body and light tannin, good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: None

Drink now or in the next couple of years on its own or pair it with Cajun Style Blackened Snapper with Herb Roasted Baby Potatoes.

Tasted: 18 April 2017

Score: 8.5+/10, Value: 8.5+/10, Total: 18/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 3.5+

LCBO: 559088

AIMERY GRAND CUVÉE 1531 CRÉMANT DE LIMOUX BRUT MÉTHODE TRADITIONNELLE NV, Ac Limoux, Languedoc, France


Cost: $17.45
Grape: Chardonnay, Mausac Blanc, Chenin Blanc
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO General List
Country: France
Region: Limoux, Languedoc
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Sieur D’Arques
Alcohol: 12.5 % Alcohol/Vol.

An interesting, complex Blanc de Blanc that delivers & at a good price

Description: Light bright gold in colour with a medium intense nose and fine mousse. This wine features light toasted oak, brioche, Granny apples, pear, white peach, pink grapefruit and honeysuckle on the nose. Medium+ body with good acidity and a long length.

Negatives: None

Interesting Note: “The history of the Languedocien vineyards goes back to the 5th century BC, when the Greeks introduced the vineyard and its cultivation practices. But it was in 1531 that the Benedictine monks of the Abbey of St Hilaire, a neighbouring commune of Limoux, produced the first sparkling wine in the World … The First Bubble of the World had just been born.” (Sieur D’Argues)

Drink now or in the next 5 years on its own or pair it with Lemon Butter Poached Crab Meat and Octopus Salad.

Tasted: 26 March 2017

Best buy

Score: 8.5+/10, Value: 9+/10, Total: 18/20

Out of 5 stars, I rated this wine: 4

LCBO: 428086