Barley Wine – a wine that’s not wine

Barley Wine – a wine that’s not wine

When I was approached to try out the Barley Wine from Mill Street I was intrigued. What makes this a wine? Why is it called wine? What’s going on here? When you pick up your bottle at the LCBO it will come in a very nice box. But you will notice immediately that this is in fact not wine – it’s barrel aged beer. There’s a few things on the box that immediately let you…

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Not Another – Not Another Turkey Post

Not Another – Not Another Turkey Post

This is not another turkey column… and it’s not “not another turkey column”. The video posted by Rick VanSickle is still one of my favorite commentaries on what to pair with Turkey. Let’s face it, Rick makes some great points. The most exciting herb or spice that sees most of the turkeys that are being cooked this year is maybe some sage? Or some thyme? Salt and pepper? Your potatoes are seasoned with cream? Salt…

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Wine Review – Ferox

Wine Review – Ferox

Everyone these days seems to be enamoured with Prince Edward County. There is some fantastic, gritty winemaking taking place to the east of Toronto. There are a lot of reasons to pay attention to the County. But there is a renaissance taking place in Niagara. It started when Two Sisters opened their impressive new facility and make quite the impression with the first few vintages of their wines. But, there are a lot of small…

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Wine Review – Chateau des Charmes for Christmas

Wine Review – Chateau des Charmes for Christmas

2016 Chateau des Charmes Barrel Fermented Chardonnay – LCBO 81653 – $14.95 – **** – This wine continues to over-deliver on price and lead the way for what is possible for entry level Chardonnay from Ontario. The wines that take place in the general list are extremely important – these wines need to be good enough to convince people to head to the vintages section to spend a few more dollars. If this is what…

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Wine Review – A taste of BC from Mission Hill

Wine Review – A taste of BC from Mission Hill

2015 Mission Hill Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon – $30.95 – Vintages 553321 – **** – This is a great example of BC Cabernet Sauvignon with nice rich black fruit layered over smoke. The story of this wine is one of structure and approachability. This wine is drinking great right now, with soft tannin and a smooth finish. The rich fruit flavours soar over the smoke and cocoa notes that start to poke through on the finish….

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Wine Review- 2015 Trail Estate Unfiltered Chardonnay

Wine Review- 2015 Trail Estate Unfiltered Chardonnay

2015 Trail Estate Unfiltered Chardonnay – $32.00 – ****+ – This Chardonnay is truly a show stopper, but not for the faint of heart. There is a little more Oak in this bottle than what we have come to expect from wineries in Ontario but it’s still well integrated. While the smoke and spice are front and centre it still leaves plenty of room for the orchard fruit from the nose to poke through. On…

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Wine Review – Pinot from Oregon and California

Wine Review – Pinot from Oregon and California

From Family Wine Merchants there is a pair of exceptional Pinot Noirs from the United States available later this month. I am generally leery of Californian Pinot Noir – let’s face it, the style is usually overcooked and drinks more like Cabernet – but I am finding more bottles that seem to hold onto their acidity. It’s a pleasure to see the Domaine Drouhin hitting the shelves after seeing the entry level bottles from this…

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Wine Review – Chardonnay from Back 10 and Featherstone

Wine Review – Chardonnay from Back 10 and Featherstone

Here is a look at a couple bottles of Chardonnay that I can only describe as highly anticipated. Both Back 10 Cellars and Featherstone work with Canadian Oak barrels and have set a benchmark for consistency and quality. Every incarnation of this wine speaks to the vintage from which it was produced. Either way it is worth heading down to Niagara to grab these bottles as I don’t anticipate them being available at the wineries…

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Le Beaujolais Nouveau Est Arrivé 2017

Le Beaujolais Nouveau Est Arrivé 2017

The Nouveau wines are released today. I still look forward to this release every year. This year feels a little exciting and there is definitely something a little different about the 2017 vintage, especially from France. The wines this year are a little more austere and this may be a year where it’s worth tucking a bottle away for a year or so. I don’t normally enjoy spending a lot of money on these cheap…

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Wine Review – Great Value – Fleur Du Cap

Wine Review – Great Value – Fleur Du Cap

A couple years ago I had the opportunity to sit down with Pieter Badenhorst or Fleur du Cap. So I was thrilled to have an opportunity to sit down with him again this year. The wines from Fleur du Cap always offer great value and high quality. The Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc from the general list at the LCBO are important because they offer a baseline from what to expect from the varietals while tasting…

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