RSS

Category Archives: White Wine

Where in the world is the Côtes de Gascogne?

2008 Domaine des Persenades, Cotes de Gascogne, France LCBO# 175695 $11.95

So…who amongst you have heard of the wine making region Côtes de Gascogne? If you answered “yes”, good for you. You graduate “top of the class” and will probably get beaten up at recess. For the rest of us, Côtes de Gascogne is a large (but rather obscure) wine making region in the southwest of France. Think of it as the “no man’s land” between Bordeaux and the regions of the Languedoc and Roussillon. Yet out of this black hole comes a hidden world of fantastic wine values waiting to be discovered.

I often wonder why these inexpensive French wines are so readily passed over by consumers. We all know that the French make some incredible wine. So why (and I am generalizing here) would the average consumer choose an Australian or Chilean wine over a French wine at the same price point? Is it that the French have effectively screwed themselves by hanging their hat on the ultra-premium brands from Bordeaux and Burgundy to the demise of value producers from lesser know regions? Or is it an issue of the consumer getting past the boggy swamp that is the typical French wine label. Either way, these wines are often lost among the “fuzzy bunny” wines that litter the shelves of the LCBO.

So, in defence of the “non” fuzzy bunny wines out there, I introduce the 2008 Domaine des Persenades. Made from a blend of the Ugni Blanc, Colombard and Petit Manseng grapes, this has beautifully balanced flavours of grapefruit, peach, lemon zest and honey. This is a really fresh wine with great acidity and a silky mouth feel. I would recommend pairing it with mussels or a light fish. As for cheese, I would try this wine with Brie or another soft cheese.

At $11.95, 2008 Domaine des Persenades is definitely punching WAY above its weight. I would highly recommend searching out this wine for the upcoming holidays…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think by commenting below.

If you’re not following me yet on Twitter, you can find me at @adamsWOTW. Also, never miss an Adam’s Wine of the Week by clicking the “subscribe” button to receive an email notifying you when I post a new wine review.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 1, 2011 in Colombard, France, White Wine

 

The “edu-ma-ction” of white Bordeaux

2007 Château Ferran Blanc, Pessac-Léognan, France LCBO# 100867 $21.00

Mark October 17th, 2011 in your calendars! This was the day that I drank the Kool-aid. That date marks the first day of the final unit of my Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Diploma, aptly named “Still Wines of the World”…also known to my wife as the “widow maker”. For the next eight months I will be immersed (nay…drowning) is a sea of wine and wine knowledge. If you have ever wanted to know all about how Ratafia is made (picture grapes from Champagne and Sherry having dirty sex and making a baby) or who the best producers from Romania are (beats the hell out of me!), then strap in baby…this is going to be a ride.

All this “edu-ma-cation” culminates in June will a winner-take-all tasting and written exam that constitutes 100% of my mark. Sounds like fun…doesn’t it! I have been warned from those who have gone before me that I won’t be able to look at wine for six months after I’m done.

So why do this? It’s simple. To help me develop the skills to find great wines without buying into the hype that blankets the wine world like a thick layer of bullshit. As they say, a little education goes a long way. It was a little education that brought me to this week’s wine.

The 2007 Château Ferran Blanc is an elegant white wine from Bordeaux’s Pessac-Léognan region. While Bordeaux is most well known for its reds, there are some devastatingly good whites being produced at incredible values. This wine, made from the Sauvignon Blanc grape, has well balanced flavours of lemon, lime, white peach, grapefruit pith and a hint of herbaceousness. This wine has definitely seen some oak giving it well-integrated notes of spice, butter and a hint of smoke. I would recommend pairing it with fresh fish in a rich sauce, lobster or lemon chicken. As for cheese, you can try it with brie or any other semi-soft cheese.

At $21.00, the 2007 Château Ferran Blanc is a great deal from a very competent producer. Best of all, it is ready to drink now. I recommend you educate yourself by giving it a try today…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think by commenting below.

If you’re not following me yet on Twitter, you can find me at @adamsWOTW. Also, never miss an Adam’s Wine of the Week by clicking the “subscribe” button to receive an email notifying you when I post a new wine review.

 
5 Comments

Posted by on October 19, 2011 in France, Sauvignon Blanc, White Wine

 

Albariño is Spanish gold

2009 Fillaboa Albariño Rías Baixas, Spain LCBO# 214171 $15.95

Ferris Buelleur had it right.  Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. This past week has been insanely busy, but somewhere between work, family, social obligations and waking up at the crack of dawn to my daughter screaming for DAAADEEeeeee I managed to slow down enough to taste a great bottle of wine. Wine is definitely my oasis. Not in a “where’s the dam drink cart!” way, but more like a momentary respite from the everyday. The act of popping open a bottle seems to slow things down enough to make life just a little more manageable. When I combine this time in my “happy place” with a wine that tastes great and is a fantastic value I can’t help but enjoy the relaxation just a little bit more.

The 2009 Fillaboa from Spain’s Rías Baixas region is an dry wine made from the indigenous Albariño grape. Albariño is a true hidden gem. Not many people outside the inner sanctum of the wine geek know the pleasure this white Spanish grape can give. This wine has intense flavours of lemon, green apple, with subtle floral notes and a smokiness that imparts a sense of complexity. The wine has good acidity and great minerality. This wine will definitely improve with a year or two of age. I would recommend pairing the Fillaboa with grilled shrimp, seared scallops or my favourite paella. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with a swiss or a Camembert.

At $15.95, this is a good wine at a great value. I highly recommend searching out the 2009 Fillaboa before it disappears. It’s only a matter of time before the rest of the world starts to pick up on how great Albariño can be…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think by commenting below.

If you’re not following me yet on Twitter, you can find me at http://twitter.com/AdamsWOTW. Also, never miss an Adam’s Wine of the Week by clicking the “subscribe” button to receive an email notifying you when I post a new wine review.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 9, 2011 in Albariño, Spain, White Wine

 

A long weekend wine to beat the heat

2009 Studert-Prüm Wehlener Sonnenuhr Reisling Kabinett Mosel, Germany LCBO# 970192 $18.95

There is nothing better than a long weekend with flawless weather. For the past three days, I have been hanging out with the family in the wild’s of Canada’s north catching some sun, eating way to much and drinking some great white wine. I don’t know what it is, but a chilled Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio or Riesling seems to act like sunscreen for the soul. Draining a bottle of a racy white on a hot summer afternoon makes everything seem to go a bit slower so you can get every last drop of relaxation out of your extra day off work. This week’s wine was the one that put me in my happy place and made me wish that everyday could be a long weekend.

The 2009 Studert-Prüm Riesling Kabinett from Germany’s Mosel region is an off-dry wine with refreshing flavours of lemon, fresh lime, white peach, apricot with a sweet floral note that intertwines the fruit. The wine has incredible acidity that counter-balances the sweetness and makes it vibrant and thirst-quenching. With only 8.1% alcohol, the 2009 Studert-Prüm will let you enjoy your afternoon without knocking you out for the count like so many other high alcohol wines might. This wine can age, but to get the most refreshing experience, drink it ASAP. Perhaps on your next sunny weekend afternoon.
I would recommend pairing the Studert-Prüm with a fresh green salad and a light vinaigrette dressing. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with a brie or a chèvre.

At $18.95, this is a well made wine at a pretty good value. With a month left in summer (I know…what a downer) I recommend running out and picking up a bottle of this great white wine…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think by commenting below. If you’re not following me yet on Twitter, you can find me at http://twitter.com/AdamsWOTW.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on August 1, 2011 in Germany, Riesling, White Wine

 

French smoky whiteness!

2009 Cédrick Bardin Pouilly-Fumé, Lorie Valley, France LCBO# 202416 $21.95

In the immortal words of the Foo Fighters…I have a confession to make. I am digging white wines these days more than reds. I know…crazy! But not just any old run of the mill Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay. I am really getting into white wines from places other than Italy, California and Australia. The benefit of looking outside the familiar is that often you can find very interesting, beautifully made wines at a reasonable price.

This week’s wine is a perfect example. The 2009 Cédrick Bardin is from the classic yet, in my opinion, completed undervalued French region of Pouilly-Fumé. This wine is made from the Sauvignon Blanc grape, but in a smoky style that is the calling card for wines of this region. Layered over this mineral backbone are very nice flavours of gooseberry, grapefruit, lemon and lime. The Cédrick Bardin has lots of good acid making it truly refreshing on a hot summer afternoon. It is drinking really well now, but could age another two to five years.

I would recommend pairing the 2009 Cédrick Bardin Pouilly-Fumé with baked salmon or a roasted chicken. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with a Crottin de Chavignol (it’s a goat cheese).

At $21.95 a bottle, this is a great find. I recommend you pick up a few bottles of this fantastic white for your summer drinking…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think by commenting below. If you’re not following me yet on Twitter, you can find me at http://twitter.com/AdamsWOTW.

 
 

A prince of a wine

2006 Domaines Schlumberger Les Princes Abbés Pinot Gris, Alsace, France LCBO# 021253

Truth be told, the best thing about the LCBO are the Product Consultants. They are like your personal guides to the ever-expanding world of wine. If you do anything this year, I would highly recommend that you get to know your local Product Consultant. I did and that’s how I found this great white from France’s Alsace region. Thank you Ray, Product Guru from the Dupont & Spadina location.

The 2006 Domaines Schlumberger Pinot Gris is a wine that really is at its peak right now. It has wonderfully rich flavours of ripe pear, ripe peach and stone. It has great acidity but is complemented with a richness you can only find in a mature wine. My only complaint is that this wine seems a bit confused whether it’s dry or off-dry. I would recommend pairing this wine with Chinese food or even Indian. As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with a mild Cheddar or a mild Gouda.

At $21.95, one would think that isn’t the best value out there. While I would normally agree, you need to balance the price with the fact that this wine is at the perfect age for drinking…no cellaring needed. I would recommend picking up a bottle to try…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.

One more thing. For those of you following me on Twitter, over the next few weeks I will be introducing you to the best LCBO Product Consultants that Toronto has to offer. If you’re not following me yet, you can find me athttp://twitter.com/AdamsWOTW.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 29, 2009 in France, Pinot Gris, White Wine

 

Another sweet fizzy for summer

2007 Cristina Ascheri, Moscato d’Asti, Piedmont, Italy $17.95 LCBO #746479

So picture this. As the long weekend quickly slips away, I am sitting in the backyard under a clear blue sky sipping this week’s Wine of the Week. I am totally convinced that this is the only way to enjoy this week’s wine. The 2007 Cristina Ascheri Moscato d’Asti is a slightly sparkling classic Italian white that you need to try.

This sweet fizzy white is jam packed with flavours of citrus and floral notes with a beautiful lychee finish. In the immortal words of Frank the Tank, “once it hits your lips, it’s so good!” The Cristina Ascheri Moscato d’Asti make a perfect aperitif or can be paired with a wide range of desserts (except for chocolate). As for cheese, I would recommend trying it with Gorgonzola.

The best part about this is wine is that not only is it a great deal at $17.95, but at 5.1% alcohol you can indulge and still be the consummate host. Please…Please…Please…try this wine. You won’t be disappointed…but that’s just my opinion. Let me know what you think.

 
 
%d bloggers like this: