available in Ontario on November 11, 2017
Our list of six new world wines is loaded with value, with just one of the six priced at more than $20.00. The lineup includes three Malbecs from Argentina’s Uco Valley: the big, ripe 2013 Clos de Los Siete, the rather elegant 2015 Zuccardi Q Malbec, and the mainstream but nicely balanced 2014 Alamos Selección Malbec. Chile is represented by an interesting and slightly rustic Carignan from the Cauquenes Valley, the 2013 Santa Carolina Specialties Dry Farming Carignan.
The final two wines are from Australia and New Zealand respectively: a very attractive Cabernet Sauvignon from Margaret River, the 2015 Robert Oatley Signature Series Cabernet Sauvignon, and the pleasant 2014 Sacred Hill Marlborough Pinot Noir.
CLOS DE LOS SIETE 2013, Uco Valley, Mendoza
Vintages #622571 • $22.95 • 750ml. • WD Score 89/100This is a well-structured wine. While alcohol shows some warmth, tannins are fine but grippy, and there is enough acidity to keep the palate alive and balanced. Dense and very ripe plum and blackberry fruit is still quite fresh on the nose and palate, with just the beginnings of a drying element. A menthol lift and subtle herbal notes add complexity towards the finish. Ripe, appealing and substantive.
Tasted 20-Oct-2017 • PHILIPPE DANDURAND WINES LTD. (Agent) • Find it at your nearest LCBO • Share Recommendation
ZUCCARDI Q MALBEC 2015, Uco Valley, Mendoza
Vintages #723478 • $19.95 • 750ml. • WD Score 89/100I like the fruit-forward nose that shows cherry, blueberry and blackberry notes and a light floral element, with the merest suggestion of oak that supports and adds breadth without real flavour. Bright acidity balances the palate, underpinned by chalky tannins. Lighter and more elegant than I expect from Argentinian Malbec, and very drinkable indeed.
Tasted 31-Oct-2017 • DIONYSUS WINES & SPIRITS LTD. (Agent) • Find it at your nearest LCBO • Share Recommendation
ALAMOS SELECCIÓN MALBEC 2014, Uco Valley, Mendoza
Vintages #322800 • $16.95 • 750ml. • WD Score 88/100This is a good, basic Argentinian Malbec: deep purple in colour, with hints of resin and coffee on the nose, and bright blueberry and blackberry aromas. It is dry, with elevated acidity, balanced alcohol, and firm, persistent tannins. Fruit on the palate is dense, and the juicy berry flavours linger with a cedary undertone on the finish. Good value.
Tasted 20-Oct-2017 • E&J GALLO WINERY CANADA LTD. (Agent) • Find it at your nearest LCBO • Share Recommendation
SANTA CAROLINA SPECIALTIES DRY FARMING CARIGNAN 2013, Cauquenes Valley
Vintages #213520 • $17.95 • 750ml. • WD Score 89/100It's almost as though the deep, dense purple colour is muting the dark-fruited nose, and the complexity only emerges on the palate. There the edgy, grippy tannins frame ripe and drying cherry, blackberry and plum fruit, backed by a cedary undertone and an edge of green herbs and menthol. There is some alcohol warmth for sure, but there is just enough acidity to keep the wine in balance. Perhaps a little rustic, but lots of interest and complexity for the money.
Tasted 20-Oct-2017 • CHARTON HOBBS INC (Agent) • Find it at your nearest LCBO • Share Recommendation
ROBERT OATLEY SIGNATURE SERIES CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015, Margaret River, Western Australia
Vintages #323741 • $19.95 • 750ml. • WD Score 89/100A very attractive and lighter-bodied Cabernet, that has good structure without undue weight and extraction. Vibrant scents of plums, blackberries and black currants fill the nose, while bright acidity and fine, persistent tannins shape the palate. The fruit is fresh, ripe and not jammy — full of life. Overt oak flavour is minimal, and the finish takes on a cedary note, with that enjoyable combination of juicy fruit and drying tannins. Appealing and very quaffable too.
Tasted 20-Oct-2017 • EPIC WINES AND SPIRITS INC. (Agent) • Find it at your nearest LCBO • Share Recommendation
SACRED HILL MARLBOROUGH PINOT NOIR 2014, Marlborough, South Island
Vintages #277665 • $19.95 • 750ml. • WD Score 88/100This is a pleasant, cheerful Pinot Noir, with enough varietal character to make the grade with me. Cranberry, raspberry and cherry fruit are framed by subtle notes of damp earth and oak spice. The palate is shaped by bright acids, fine tannins and fresh but ripe fruit. The tannins mingle with the acidity to lengthen the finish. Simple, fresh and charming.
Tasted 20-Oct-2017 • FAMILY WINE MERCHANTS INC. (Agent) • Find it at your nearest LCBO • Share Recommendation