When I was last in Quebec I bought a few bottles of this delicious Pinot. Having enjoyed the 2017 Montague immensely I could hardly contain myself when I found this vintage. It is a pale ruby in the glass as expected but has very thick legs- interesting considering it rolls in at 13% ABV. The nose is quite intense- red cherry, strawberry coulis, cinnamon, clove, pomegranate, mocha and florals of violet and geranium. The palate it dry and surprisingly tannic for this varietal. The flavors are a bit less intense from the nose but I get strawberry as the lead component with the red cherry and pomegranate supporting. The chocolate, spice and florals are present along with a touch of oak. The wine is medium (-) bodied with juicy acidity and a decent length finish. This wine perplexes me- it’s a bit in-your-face at the get go, the tannins are quite persuasive yet it morphs into a seductive and soft Pinot as it transitions to the mid palate and finish. It may need a bit of time. Right now it is a 90 point wine that I see potential for. At $32 CAD ($26) it’s worth looking for and cellaring. 5 Stars from me- I’m pairing it with roast Duck and Scalloped Potatoes. Salut….
I was in Quebec a few months ago and picked up a few Canadian Pinots. This one is pale ruby in the glass with a watery sheen showing off its relatively low 13% ABV. The nose has medium intensity aromas of strawberry, red cherry, cinnamon, earthy bramble, pomegranate and a hint of cedar. The palate is crisp and tart. Fine grained tannins lead the way to a sour cherry mid palate where I am enjoying a melange of red fruit. The back end is juicy with really good acidity and a hint of oak influence. Sour red cherry is the key here, as it should be with this varietal. The wine is light to medium bodied and has a crunchy mouthfeel- it’s a fresh, young wine for sure. The finish is medium in length and very tasty if not a touch sharp. I like it. Pairing ideas for this 91 pointer would be roast chicken, Eggplant Parm or a cheese plate. I think it is open for business and will remain so till 2025. At $30 USD it’s a 5 star wine that might be a bit difficult to source here in the USA, but look for it up North eh. Salut….
On a recent trip to Canada I purchased this Icewine. It is made from the Vidal grape which is a hybrid varietal made by crossing Ugni Blanc with Rayon D’Or. The berries are allowed to fully ripen and once the temperature gets really cold (-10C) the fruit is harvested and pressed immediately. The grapes tend to be sweet as a result of over-ripening and when they are pressed, the frozen water inside the grape remains whilst the sugar is run off resulting in a very sweet nectar that is fermented into a low alcohol (9% or so) wine. This winery is well known and their wine is delicious- dark gold and almost syrupy in the glass. Aromas and flavors of apricot, honeysuckle, apricot and banana. The wine tastes very sweet with low alcohol. It is full bodied, unctuous, waxy and paired well with desserts of carrot cake and Key Lime pie. I was a bit rushed in tasting but the next bottle will get the full treatment. I paid $50 for this 94 point bottle that gets 5 stars. If you like sweet wines, this is a must-try. It is unlike a Sauternes as it does not have the Botrytis nuances- instead it is more fruit focused and leans heavily on the sugar content to deliver a delicious treat! Salut….
I’m grilling a spatchcocked chicken on the charcoal- it’s either a white wine or a Pinot. This one is pale garnet in color with almost no legs- indicative of the low 12.5% ABV. Th nose has medium intensity aromas of red cherry, strawberry, straw, perfume, red licorice and wet stone. It’s quite complex and certainly interesting. The palate is dry with good acidity and lithe tannins. The red fruit flavors intermingle with some black cherry and hints of oak. The wine has a light to medium body and a decently long finish where the very slight tannins make themselves present. It’s a delicious, lighter style of Pinot that is showing very nice primary fruit flavors in a layered manner with good structure. If you prefer a more delicate and seductive Pinot, this one is right up our alley. 91 points from me for this $26 charmer (I paid $33 CAD in Quebec) makes it a 5 star effort. Drink till 2026. Salut….
I drank an Inniskillin Pinot last summer that blew my socks off. I wanted to find it again on a recent trip to Montreal. This was the best the shop had. See through, medium purple. Strawberry ganache and cherry on the nose. The palate- I get sour cherry, charcoal and earthiness. The mid palate is focused, cherry and rhubarb. On the finish it’s rather short but tannins emerge to round it out. 89 points and a little underwhelming considering the hype I built over the other bottle. $14 makes it a 3 star effort to drink till 2026. Salut….
PS. Stock photo as I forgot to take one
Moxie and I took our son- Jett, to Lake Placid this past week. He’s a competitive Ice Dancer and was representing Team USA in the Novice North American Cup. We have been up here several years in a row and always vow to continue northward to visit Montreal after the competition. This year, armed with fresh passports, we took the 87 mile ride up into foreign lands to visit, albeit briefly, Canada. It was a great seguey and we stayed right by Old Montreal, which is beautiful. Our dinner was at a great Bistro, where I asked for and got a delicious Canadian Pinot Noir.
Red and see-through with long legs showing in the glass. On the nose I get bright cherry, strawberry coulis, cedar and nutmeg. On the palate it has some really delicious cherry extract, rhubarb, a smokiness as well as mocha. The acidity of this Pinot is on pointe- the mouthfeel is gorgeous. There are some sly tannins lurking in the background that give just a touch of dryness. The mid palate and finish are equally tasty, fleshy yet still delicate a’ la Pinot style. This is new world yet has such a restrained approach- I’m loving it. 92 maybe 93 points. I’m pairing it with Escargot, followed by duck breast. Drink till 2030. $30 makes this a bargain for Pinot of this quality, 5 stars. Salut….
A gift from my Canadian cousin, I opened this bottle after dinner the other night. I am a huge fan of white dessert wines: Sauternes, Late Harvest, Icewine, all of ’em. Except this one. I could make out the telltale signs of “sticky” wine, apricot on the nose and the unctuous texture, but it was totally overshadowed by the addition of Brandy. Not sure what the point is, but it detracted the essence of Icewine for me. BTW, in case you didn’t know it, this style of wine is made from healthy grapes that have been left to freeze on the vine before being pressed. The resultant juice is more concentrated and higher in sugars. It tends to be expensive, and hails mainly from Canada and Germany.
I honestly cannot pass comments on this wine as the style is not to my choosing.
A Reserve Cabernet Franc from Canada given to me by my cousin. Not wanting to “look the gift-horse in the mouth”, I can’t help it. I love Cab Franc and look forward to tasting as much of it as possible. This bottle had little to offer in the Franc arena, very light, with little nose and no backbone. I was wondering what their regular bottling was like, cause this one gets 2 stars and 83 points. Sorry guys, there is nothing interesting here, no mid-palate, little acidity, where did the tannins go? It’s only 5 years old, reserve’s are supposedly the best you have to offer and Franc is known to have some stuffing. Major pass…. Sorry cuz.