A wine agent’s portfolio tasting typically gives you the chance to try both listed as well as spec wines; wines that may only show up in specialty wine shops or restaurants, in limited quantities. I have been to Mark Anthony Wine and Spirits‘ portfolio tasting now for a few years, and I am always very impressed by the wineries that they have curated from around the world, and right here in BC. Just about every wine that I tasted I could have listed as “recommended”, but then this article would be a short novel. I tried to pare it down, but was still over 25 wines. Still too long, so I worked hard to pick the best wines for you in the red, white and sparkling categories to enjoy. Enjoy!
Cleto Chiarli “Centenario” Lambrusco Grasparossa DOC Amabile, Italy – A sparkling wine made with the red Lambrusco Grasparossa grape, this wine is semi-sweet, but not all lambruscos are sweet. There are many dry lambruscos that I’d recommend you try. This one is darker ruby in the glass with sweet cassis fruit on the nose. Light bodied, with ripe raspberries and red fruit on the palate.
Montenisa Franciacorta Brut DOCG, Italy – Who says that the only sparkling wine Italy can make is prosecco? I bring forth “Franciacorta”. This sparkling wine is made with Chardonnay grapes and uses the Champenois method (2nd fermentation in the bottle) to make the wine’s bubbles. This wine has a light toasty nose. Medium minus body with a fine mousse. Peach, apples and toast on the palate. Top quality.
Mission Hill Family Estate Perpetua 2013, BC – A top-tier Chardonnay made by Mission Hill. It has a light elegant nose, with aromas of apples and butterscotch. Dry, medium body and acidity, with ripe apple and sweet spice flavours, and fine texture.
CedarCreek Estate Winery Gewürztraminer 2014, BC – We do aromatic white wines well in BC. This Gewürztraminer is very tasty. It has a smooth, floral, apple and sweet spice nose. Light bodied, smooth, with peach flavour followed by sweet spices.
Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Estate Chardonnay 2013, California – Light aromas of apples and tropical fruit. Dry, light body with medium acidity. Flavours of pears, apples, butterscotch and vanilla. A very balanced wine. Very good quality.
Tyrrells Vat 47 Hunter Chardonnay 2009, Australia – Medium intensity flinty, tropical fruit aromas in the glass. Medium plus body, quite round with ripe apples and lemon rind flavours. Medium acidity.
Mission Hill Family Estate Quatrain 2012, BC – Medium intensity nose with ripe dark cherry aroma. Medium body and acidity, and yet a light mouth-feel (which I like). Firmer tannins. Rip cherries, vanilla, sweet spices and a hint of cedar. Peppery finish. Tasty.
Rodney Strong Alexander Valley Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, California – A mix of ripe cassis and cocoa on the palate. Medium body, round with a mineral streak. Ripe cherries and cassis. Fine tannins. Nice ripe fruit in the glass with tannins in support.
Rodney Strong Symmetry Red Meritage 2013, California – Ripe cassis, plums and cherries on the nose. Dry, medium plus body, round and silky, with sweet fruit flavours; in particular raspberries, cassis and cherries. Sweet spices and pepper later on.
Dona Paula El Alto Parcel Malbec 2010, Argentina – Violets, chocolate, dark fruit and berries on the nose. Full body, round with ripe red fruits, a floral component, vanilla and some sweet spices. Fine tannins. An excellent sip. –
Villa Antinori Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG 2012, Italy – Violets and cherry aromas, along with some Old World oak. Medium plus body, round mouth-feel, with ripe cherry flavours and a hint of oak. Medium plus tannins. Harmonious.
Tenuta Sant’ Antonio Telos il Rosso 2013, Italy – Ripe cassis, red fruit and coffee on the nose. A dry wine, light bodied, with flavours of red apples and red cherries, and fine tannins. A light delight in the glass. –