For the past few weeks we’ve been drinking wine we like, rather than new bottles, hence the lack of reviews.
For a special occasion last weekend we popped some bubbles including Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte, a “base model” in BC which is dry and appealing with a butterscotch note at the end that, although pales to say, a Perrier-Jouët, is nevertheless delectable. It used to be easy to find, under $60, at BC Liquor, but has for whatever reason disappeared. It was for a while my go-to special occasion champers.
We bought a bottle of an Italian red, the Verso Rosso Salenta, which was our favorite value red a while back, review here. What a bomb. Thank god I wasn’t corking it for guests. Hugely disappointing; it had that prune juice funk that leads one to believe it had been stored in a too hot container or left to sit on a loading bay long before it ever got unloaded into a temperature controlled environment. VRS, yah burnt.
We finished up some of our case lots from Blue Mountain. Last March I gave, well, a rather savage review of their “regular” Chardonnay. See my disappointment and roundabout way of calling it crap, here. Wait a minute: A year in the “cellar” had transformed this forgettable plonk completely; peach and lemon notes on the palate, opening to reveal an intriguing filbert/maraschino pop that left us no option but to drink it pronto. So, note to self: Order by the case, sock it away for a rainy day.
It’s been a few years since we drank Nautilus. It was gifted on a weekend lately and, for better or worse, we opened it with some foodie BLTs on home-made bread. It was a killer. If you think of the “severity” of SB on a ten point scale, with a lot of Sancerre hovering under 3.5, and most NZ SB, like, say Brancott, at an 8.5 or higher, the Nautilus hovers around 7; it has some restraint that’s often missing down under. Bracing but very food friendly.
Price: $28.50 before taxes at Everything Wine.
Market Liquidity: You pay for the refinement.
On an evening of spectacular fresh halibut steamed with baby vegetables in parchment, we opened a Nichol Pinot Gris. (This is not the more expensive, harder to source, “two barrels” PG. But, that said, let’s go apples and apples and hold it up to, say, the eloquent and much loved Blue Mountain base model, to which iy doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance against.) Anyone surfing the blog will know we like our PG, particularly the variety of West Coast PG. The colour of PG in BC, covers a wide swath on the Pantone scale. As for Pinot Gris and its myriad hues, I’ll leave that to another blogger, with an interesting take, and a reference to a vintner making seven different types of PG (!) in almost as many colours: Link here.
While we’ve “oohed” and “ahhed” about many Nichols in the past—witness us fawning over the Cab Franc here and praising the value of the Nine Mile Red here, (but finding no love for a Gewurtz here,)—this was a tad rough; even if drinking PG is nothing more than the amusement of having a pink hue in your glass, you’re better off with Kettle Valley. Still, it drank well with fish.
Price: $22 or thereabouts.
Market Liquidity: Competition in the marketplace shames this everyday white.