Archive for November, 2017

November 10, 2017

Domaine Naturaliste Discovery Margaret River Chardonnay, 2015

Astonishingly simplistic for a Margaret River white; sort of a taint on the brand.  I mean even without a Google what comes to mind? Leeuwin, Cullen, Vasse Felix…  Heavyweights all.  Think of it; expectations run high.  To open something so inconsequential and immediately forgettable is a bit like the difference between a spun sugar dome over sorbet at a Michelin starred restaurant and candy floss on the midway at a fair.

 

The citrus runs to grapefruit pith, the floral notes are thin, the refreshment factor blah.  A shocking disappointment.  BC Liquor discontinues Cape Mentelle but introduces this.  Shurely shome mishtake?

 

Price: $25 plus taxes at BC Liquor.

 

Market Liquidity: Runt of the litter (from purebred stock).

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November 9, 2017

Mâcon-Lugny Bouchard Père et Fils Saint-Pierre, 2015

Quintessentially prix fixe lunch “table wine included” French white.  No home run, no strike out, more of a walk. Apple, quince, gun barrel dry, sharp, piquant, a most palatable foil to cheese sauce or rich vegetarian, although it held up less with chicken.

 

A pale (as in slight) Chardonnay, as Chards go, but an appetizing food friendly dry white.  I would give it no stars, as stars go, but recommend it still.

 

Price: $24.50 in BC before SUBSTANTIAL taxes and, get this, $18.50 in Toronto all in.  Go figure.

 

Market Liquidity: A drinkable workhorse white.

November 8, 2017

Glen Carlou Quartz Stone Chardonnay, 2014

A low score middling wine with the Decanter bunch: I took exception and found it climbed above the measly 87 points they deigned to anoint it with, and still I laud Decanter.

 

It has lovely citrus notes, a spicy nuance, bits of tropical notes like flambeed pineapple–and none of the cloying oak of heavy handed Chards.  There is a sweet spot, somewhere between the fridge and room temperature, where it comes alive and really charms.

 

Price: A not too thrifty $29 at Kitsilano Wine Cellars.

 

Market Liquidity: You won’t impress, but you will enjoy.

November 7, 2017

Amalaya Malbec, 2015

It’s been a few years since we picked up a bottle of Amalaya.  Why?  I have no idea.  It’s an inexpensive extremely palatable crowd pleaser that even pleases the pointsters.  From Salta, Argentina’s version of Atacama, it’s a dark, luscious sipper with a thick, balsamic feel on the tongue, and some charred chocolate and licorice on the finish.  Readily available across BC, the online description touts raspberry, graphite and black olives, none of which popped for us.  That said, this is spectacular “BC value” if you know what I mean.

 

Price: $22 at BC Liquor.

 

Market Liquidity: Like running into an old friend on the street.

November 6, 2017

Vina Eguia Rioja Reserva, 2011

Yeah.  So.  Not Rioja’s finest hour.  It’s a close but no cigar vintage.  We did not find it elegant or balanced or rounded, as promised.  We found it a bit uneven, with a vanilla that’s at the fore (and not in a good way) and a softness to the fruit that was decent and palatable but not memorable.

 

You can find this in the US for $12 a bottle.  A steal.  You can buy this in Saskatchewan for $18.  Very good value.  But at nearly $30 in BC with tax it’s like fruit past its prime.

 

Price: $26 plus at Kitsilano Wine Cellars.

 

Market Liquidity: Polka dots and plaid.