My first Trade tasting for 2019 was this week, with agents showing the latest new wines they have brought to Vancouver or new vintages of wines that are currently in our market. I was quite surprised by how many sparkling wines I had a chance to try. I normally see a peak interest in sparkling wine leading up to the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. But people are now seeing sparkling wine as something you can drink on a regular basis; not just for special occasions. I think the rise of Prosecco and its value price may have something to do with the sparkling wine boom. Below are a few of the wines that I enjoyed and hope you get a chance to try them too, either from a BC Liquor store or one of our private wine shops. Enjoy.
Sparkling and White Wines
Bouvet Brut, NV, France – A cremant style sparkling wine made with 75% Chenin Blanc and 25% Chardonnay from the Loire Valley. It had a nice stone fruit nose. High acidity, medium-sized biting bubble, with ripe stone fruit flavour predominantly, together with some citrus. It finished with citrus rind flavour.
Bouvet Cremant de Loire, NV, France – A rose sparkling made with 100% Cabernet Franc grapes. It has a pale peach skin colour. Light red fruit and red cherry aromas. Dry, medium body, high acidity with medium creamy bubble. Red cherries and crisp red apple flavours. Tasty. –
Barone Ricasoli Albia 2016, Italy – Barone Ricasoli is well-known in Tuscany for their Chianti wines, but have you ever heard of a white wine from them? Indeed there is, with this one being made from Chardonnay grapes. I tasted this wine last year and was enthralled, and was very happy to see it on display for this tasting. It has a nice deep, ripe apple and peach nose. Smooth! Medium body with lighter acidity. Ripe apple flavour with a light touch of oak that gives it some structure. Some bitterness on the finish. –
Cuatro Raya Cuarenta Vendimias Verdejo 2017, Spain – The Verdejo grape is maybe not too well-known yet, but it should gain admirers as people taste more wines from this grape. This wine has a light, sweet peach nose. Medium body, off-dry, light acidity, with stone fruit and floral flavours. Lighter mouthfeel. Fun and delightful. –
Starmont Carneros Chardonnay 2015, California – One of the first things that captured my attention to this wine before tasting it was that it used a screw cap. I rarely see a screw cap for California Chardonnay. I have heard that the industry and consumers in California still prefer to have a wine with a cork stopper. I enjoyed the nice light tropical fruit and butterscotch aromas of this wine. The aromas followed to the palate with pronounced flavour. Fuller bodied, off-dry, medium acidity. Very smooth; buttery. I think this wine would be a perfect pairing with lobster. –
Bees Knees Chenin Viognier 2018, South Africa – Light honey, crisp apple and ripe peach aromas in the glass. Medium body with a thicker, smooth mouthfeel. Tropical fruit flavour, with some drying tannins. –
Paternoster Vulcanico Falanghina 2017, Italy – Falanghina is a white grape that almost disappeared from Italy. The wines from this grape go very well with seafood. Enjoy it here in Vancouver. This wine is quite aromatic, showing oranges and ripe peaches. Medium minus body dry, with medium acidity. Green citrus and lime rind flavours and a tart finish.
La Petite Perriere Sauvignon Blanc 2016, France – Light flinty or petrol nose. Medium body, dry with more flintiness, along with green fruit flavours. An elegant wine.
Chateau Lafitte, Cotes de Bordeaux 2015, France – Nice aromatics; ripe cassis, red fruits and Old World oak. Medium body, dry with lower acidity and fine tannins. Ripe black fruit, vanilla, and Old World Oak flavour. Has a bitter edge to it, and finishes with sweet spices. –
Haut Faugeres, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, 2010, France – Right bank Bordeaux. It has a nice red fruit, cedar, and vanilla nose. Dry, medium plus body, but still a light mouthfeel. Red fruits, red cherries, cedar and vanilla on the palate. A very tasty wine. –
Pierre Amadieu Grande Reserve Cotes du Rhone 2014, France – Light intensity dark fruit nose. Dry, lighter bodied with medium plus fine tannins. Red fruit, red cherries and Old World oak flavours. Dry finish. A nice Old World Style Rhone red. –
Airfield Estates Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Washington state – I’m happy to see more WA state wines come across the border for us to enjoy. There is a lot of good wine coming from WA state; Riesling, Chardonnay, Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon predominantly. This wine has a light intensity, dark fruit and capsicum aromas. Dry, medium body, roundish mouthfeel. Flavours of capsicum, cedar, ripe black fruit and vanilla. Firmer tannins on the finish. Nice.
LacertA Cuvee IX 2015, Romania – Romania seems to have recognized BC as a new location to promote their wines. There are a few Romanian wines that I have tried last year, and now this year. This wine is a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 15% Shiraz, and 10% Feteasca Neagra. It has aromas of ripe, sweet cassis and raspberries. Fuller bodied, off-dry, with medium acidity and tannins. Ripe dark fruits, ripe cherries and cassis, and sweet spice flavours. If you are ok with a bit of sweetness in your red wine, you should enjoy this wine. –