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Wine Man of the Year

Posted in Uncategorized on July 14, 2018 by darmyers

Eduardo Chadwick

This man is Eduardo Chadwick, and was recently named Decanter Magazine’s Wine Man of the Year.  He is one of the reason’s Chilean wine has hit the world stage.  The reason I’m telling you this, is that we can get some of his magnificent wines here in Canada.  An Industrial Engineer by trade, and learning about wine from both his father and studying in Bordeaux, this pioneer of wine set out to prove that wines coming out of Chile were of the finest quality and feels the best is yet to come.  Let’s take a look at some of the wines Eduardo Chadwick is involved in.

Errazuriz is one of the labels he is involved in, and Errazuriz, back in the mid-1990’s,  was a joint venture between Eduardo Chadwick and Robert Mondavi.  Robert Mondavi was all about quality and so is Eduardo Chardwick.

Errazuriz Estate Cabernet

Errazuriz has a full line of wines here in Canada, I counted 15 at my local wine store.  They range from the Estate Cabernet Sauvignon which is affordable for everyone at $16 a bottle…

Don Maximiano

To the award winning Don Maximiano which Mr. Chadwick has put up against some of the great French Bordeaux wines in the world.  He is a descendant of Don Maximiano, who founded the winery.  This beauty sells for $85 here in Canada, but he thinks it’s as good as a good French Bordeaux selling for triple the price.  Although this wine is 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, there are other varietals involved.  15% Carmenere, 8% Malbec, 7% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc make up this fantastic Bordeaux style blend. The Errazuriz wines come from the Aconcagua Valley in Chile, just north of Santiago.  I love Errazuriz wines, I think they are great wines at great prices.

Arboleda

Another name associated with Eduardo Chadwick is Arboleda.  We have two of the Arboleda wines here locally, and one is the Carmenere with the other being the Cabernet Sauvignon.  These wines also come from the Aconcagua Valley and Eduardo Chadwick, along with Robert Mondavi, started Arboleda in 1999. The Carmenere is less than $22 here in Nova Scotia and is a great silky wine with balsamic notes and very well-balanced.   This vineyard was one of the  first wineries in Chile to be certified under Chile’s National Sustainability Code that guarantees environmentally friendly production, social responsibility towards the community and economic viability.

And for my wine of the week, although it’s not made by Eduardo Chadwick, Decanter Magazine did give this wine 96 points.

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I think this is the first time I have seen a wine that has been given 96 Points, that costs less than $20.  It was a fantastic wine.  I just love Valpolicella Ripasso, because the wine from the Valpolicella grape is passed over the Amarone skins and the must and soaks up all that great intense Amarone flavor.  The grapes are also hand-picked, which is almost unheard of in a bottle of wine less than $20, and only the best are used.  This medium-bodied wine with hints of spice is a great accompaniment to just about anything you put on the dinner table.  I enjoyed it while barbecuing while listening to a few tunes.  Perfect!

Wine is like duct tape

Have a great weekend everyone.

Till next week, Cheers

Darlene

 

 

 

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Come Summer With Me!

Posted in Uncategorized on July 7, 2018 by darmyers

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Much of Canada is experiencing a crazy heat wave this week.  I feel for my fellow Canadians in Ontario and Quebec as they have experienced temperatures in the 40’s.  So far, in Atlantic Canada, it hit 38-degrees on Wednesday, and I’m hoping it doesn’t get any hotter than that.  I like Summer as much as the next person, but extreme heat, like extreme Winter weather is no fun.  There’s not a lot you can do outside when it’s that hot.  Solution:  Stay inside with the fans and the AC and enjoy a glass of wine or a cold beverage of any kind.

I know the blog is called ‘Wine – In My Opinion’, but this wine lover also likes to enjoy an ice cold beer every once in a while.  Nova Scotia has exploded with some fantastic craft beers and sales in craft beer in my province grew by 50% last year.  Well this item is made in Moncton, New Brunswick, but is sold here in Halifax.  I’m going to start this week’s wine blog off with an icy cold Crafty Radler from Pumphouse Brewery in New Brunswick.  This Radler, flavored with grapefruit and tangerine is beyond delicious and the hops and malt are very balanced.  I tried this beer this past week, and even if you don’t think you like beer, you’ll probably like this one.  And if this particular Radler isn’t available, there is a wide assortment of refreshing Radler beers available.

Now let’s get back to the reason you’re here… the wine!

Cab France

All around the office I’ve heard people say they are not cooking, except for the BBQ, as it’s too warm to put on the oven.  BBQ?  Here’s your wine.  It’s not often you see Cabernet Franc on its own, it’s usually part of a Bordeaux blend, or a Bordeaux-style blend.  If done right, it can be delicious on its own, like this one from Chile.  As a matter of fact, the wine maker is from Bordeaux France, François Lurton, who happens to be a 5th Generation winemaker.  You know he is making good wine. This is another fine example of excellent wine being produced in the Colchagua Valley in Chile, and this fine wine sells for under $17.  The Araucano Reserve Cabernet Franc, try it!

And now for my wine of the week….

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The Four Vines Biker Zinfandel hails from Paso Robles in California and is a gem, in my opinion.  Burgers, ribs, padta… there isn’t too much you can’t pair with this wine. Full-bodied with hints of pepper,  after 30 years of research and DNA testing, it has been confirmed that Zinfandel is identical to Italy’s Primitivo.  Which means the grape variety is even older than originally thought because Primitivo originally cane to Italy from Croatia.  Whatever the history, this is a great wine that comes in under $30!

That’s it for this week, stay safe out there!  And remember to keep your pets cool.

Till next week, Cheers

Darlene

 

 

Canada Day 2018

Posted in Uncategorized on June 30, 2018 by darmyers

Canada Day 2018

Tomorrow is Canada Day and each year I do a wine blog highlighting Canadian wines.  Every year, in my opinion, the selection and quality if wine coming from Canada  just gets better and better.  Here is a prime example.

See ya later ranch

The See Ya Later Ranch Red Blend out of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia was almost my wine of the week.  This is a blend in every sense of the word,  Comprised of 30% Shiraz, 24% Zinfandel, 18% Petit Verdot, 16% Tempranillo, and 12% Merlot.  This is a flavorful wine and if you’re planning a visit, the vineyard is also extremely dog friendly.  The original owner, Major Hugh Fraser, was not only a dog lover, one of the charities he was very passionate about was the SPCA.  He was also very passionate about wine and started planting grapes on this plot of land in the Okanagan Valley in 1920.  If you’re planning to start the barbecue this weekend, and let’s face it, who isn’t, this is the wine that will go with everything you’re serving this long weekend.  I highly recommend it!

Cab Franc Rose

Apparently a humid mass is supposed to hover over Nova Scotia this long weekend, and temperatures could hit +36-degrees.  That’s hot for here.  A great way to beat the heat, in my opinion, is rose wine, and this one from local producer Benjamin Bridge is a winner!  Cabernet Franc is an elegant red wine, so it comes as no surprise it makes a fantastic rose wine.  The 2016 vintage of this wine also represents Benjamin Bridge’s first  step toward’s its conversion to organic viticulture.  Beautiful flavors of strawberry and oranges, this is a perfect patio wine, and is also extremely food friendly.

And now for my wine of the week….

Mission 5

The reason this particular wine nosed out the See Ya Later Blend as the wine of the week was price point.  From Mission Hill Vineyards in British Columbia, half the grapes from this wine comes from the Osoyoos region and the other half from Oliver BC.  But the Estate Series Cabernet Merlot from Mission Hill represents the finest grapes from the region and this Vineyard.  The name might suggest it only contains Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, however, it also contains small amounts of Petite Verdot and Cabernet Franc.  These 4 grapes make for a spectacular wine, and this wine sells for under $20.  It’s a Bordeaux style blend and Mission Hill has done a wonderful job with this wine.  Grilling a steak this Canada Day weekend?  Try a bottle of this wine, you’ll love it.

Wine Above Average

Here’s to an above average Canada Day Long weekend.  Stay safe and please do not drink and drive.

Till next week, Cheers

Darlene

 

 

Hello Summer!

Posted in Uncategorized on June 23, 2018 by darmyers

Wine Summer 2

It was looking iffy for a while, when parts of Canada were getting snow in June, but Summer has finally arrived.  Don’t you just love Summer?  Sunny days, patios, barbecue and great wine. Don’t let anyone tell you a person can’t drink red wine in the Summer, because I’m here to prove them wrong.  Wines like Pinot Noir and Merlot are great Summer wines.  You can serve them slightly chilled, because if it’s 20+ more degrees, you definitely want to cool that wine down a bit.

Speaking of Merlot, here’s a new Merlot I tried this past week.

Roche Merlot

I went to my friend Sandra’s home, because we are watching the Big Little Lies series together.  She bought this to the table Thursday evening.  I really enjoyed it.  It had more structure and it was more tannic than what you would normally think for a Merlot, and the oak was very evident.   I was surprised to discover there was no Cabernet Sauvignon in this wine.  One of the things I will tell you is that this wine is not filtered!  And Sandra got a big mouthful of sediment when we finished the wine.  It hails from the Rhone Valley in France, and would make a good BBQ wine.

Here’s another great red wine perfect for Summer, and it happens to be another new Merlot I tried this past week.

Lunghetta

This is the CA Lunghetta Merlot from Italy and it’s a well-structured fruity wine that comes in around the $15 mark.  This is from the Veneto region of Italy, which of course is home to Venice.  Veneto is more known for Prosecco and the Italian Spritzers with Aperol, which I fell in love with while in Italy.  This is a very nice Merlot from Italy and goes great with that Summer pizza, pasta and barbecue fare.

And now for my wine of the week…

Montgo

I have to tell you about this fantastic new wine I tried last week through Amber at the NSLC and then bought it last night to have with my BBQ ribs.  I love old vine wine, and you see that in Zinfandel a lot.  Well the Montgo Monastrell comes from old vines and it is breathtakingly good.  This wine definitely focuses on the fruit, as it has only seen 6 months aging in subtle French oak.  Just long enough to enhance the smoothness without the oak being dominant.  Montgo, means mountainous, and the grapes were hand-picked which is very unusual for a wine that sells here for $19.  Monastrell is the Spanish grape variety also known as Mourvedre in France.  Recommend for Summer!

Wine Summer

Whatever is in your glass this Summer, enjoy it!  Our Summers seem so short here in Canada, enjoy it while you can.

Till next week, Cheers

Darlene

 

Fun Wine Tasting Part 2

Posted in Uncategorized on June 16, 2018 by darmyers

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Last week I was telling you about the fun wine tasting I facilitated last Friday night.  Last  weeks wine blog covered the sparkling, the white and the rose wine that we enjoyed!   This week I would like to tell you about some of the red wines we enjoyed.

Boabrisa

The first red wine was from Portugal featuring a grape I had tried the previous evening for the first time,  Trincadeira.  Although I was trying it for the very first time, apparently it is the oldest and most planted grape variety in Portugal!   This wine comes in at the $20 mark, is very smooth, with my only complaint being it doesn’t have a very long finish.   Many people in the room thought the same way, that is soon as you swallow the wine, the flavour was gone from your pallet.  Still an easy to drink wine for $20!

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The Moma Red  was probably the clear winner among the crowd for the evening.   Everyone loved this wine.  This easy to drink wine is a blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot and is a surprising $20.  When Umberto Cesari set out to make quality wine in a region known for quantity, not quality, some people thought he was crazy.   But he did make quality wine and this is definitely one of them.

Here is my wine of the week…

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I can’t believe I forgot to take a picture of the actual wine bottle, but here it is with wine critic James suckling’s 97 point rating!   This is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petite Verdot, Sangiovese and Syrah.  Full-bodied, yet balanced.  We drank it fairly young, and it has lots of room for cellaring to drink in the future.  At $78, it’s a treat and if  you want to start a cellar collection, this is a great starting wine!

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I get asked all the time how long you can save a wine once it’s opened   Here is a great chart to help you.

Till next week, cheers

Darlene

 

 

 

Wine Tasting Fun Part 1

Posted in Uncategorized on June 9, 2018 by darmyers

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Last night I facilitated another wine tasting, and it was my second one with this fun group.  I really enjoy doing wine tastings with this particular group of people  because I believe I have found people who love wine as much as I do!  Now that’s something!

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We had 27 enthusiastic wine drinkers at this event and we had a lot of fun trying some new wines, with some clear favourites.

 

Lightfoot and Wolfville

The first wine on the menu, was one I’ve written about before.  It’s the 100% organic Lightfoot and Wolfville   Rose wine made right here in Nova Scotia, Canada.  This is one of my favorite rose wines, and it’s how we kick-started the evening.  Rose is a great appetizer wine and the social group had laid out wonderful charcuterie boards around the room, with cheese, meats and crackers.  This wine went very well with the food, but someone also pointed out it’s a great patio wine for the Summer.  It’s only $20 and will probably sell out before end of Summer.

 

Kung fu Riesling

Here’s another wine that went well with the charcuterie foods.  The  Kung Fu Riesling from Washington State, a delicious Riesling that is just $23 a bottle.   I believe this Riesling surprised a few people because many people were expecting a Riesling to be super sweet  Riesling, as my regular readers know, is my favorite wine to pair with spicy food, Thai food, and Chinese cuisine .  This particular Riesling is not overly sweet and has a wonderful acidity with nice citrus flavors on the palate.

As we come to the end of the whites, this was my wine of the week…

Villa de Conchi

Here’s a new wine I haven’t written about before, and one of the clear favourites of the night.  Villa di Conchi sparkling Cava from Spain is such an easy to drink sparkling wine.   We are entering lobster season here in Nova Scotia and this would be a great wine to pair with shellfish.   It can be challenging to find a cool climate in Spain but the section where these grapes are grown are surrounded by the Montserrat Mountains, and cool climate makes for some great Cava. This sparkling wine was very crisp and refreshing on the pallet and it didn’t have that biscuit aftertaste.  I loved it, and at $17.99 it is an amazing sparkling wine done in the traditional method.  It also comes in a beautiful gift box and would make an amazing gift.

Wine Fear

Next week I will share the reds we enjoyed, including a red that someone shared with the group from Tuscany, and a dessert wine done different

Till next week, Cheers

Darlene

 

Sunshine, Horse Races & Wine

Posted in Uncategorized on June 2, 2018 by darmyers

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This past week I was in Prince Edward Island for our annual Maritime sales conference.  It entailed lots of sunshine, lots of learning, a trip to the horse races and copious amounts of wine!  Good times!

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It was my first time betting on horse racing and I have to say we all had a lot of fun.   I work with an amazing group of people and I always look forward to these few days away with my colleagues .

Now let’s talk about some wine …

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This was my first time trying this Merlot out of Chile.  I didn’t buy it at our NSLC store,  but I bought it at a boutique wine store here in Halifax called The Rockhead. Where ever you live, you may have to Google it, to see where this wine is available.  When I first purchased this wine I didn’t realize how prominent the Maola name was in Chile.   The partners of this Vineyard own three others, and have over 35 years experience making and exporting wine out of Chile.    I think they did a great job on this Merlot, its juicy with great texture.   Along with some bold fruit flavours, there is also nice spicy notes on the palate, which will make it a great wine to accompany your next BBQ.   And it’s only $15 a bottle which makes it a great value .

And now for my wine of the week…

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This was a wine I have been saving and yes, you are seeing the name Rothschild.   Château Lafitte Rothschild has been the #1 rated vineyard in France since the Paris Expo in 1867.  The name Rothschild has even been known to date back to 1224 when the monks were making wine in France.   The cheapest bottle of Château Lafitte Rothschild to be found here in Nova Scotia is $1400, and they go up from there.   You read that right, one thousand four hundred dollars.  Not a typo!  You can imagine what a treat it was to find this bottle, a partnership between  Chateau Lafitte Rothschild and the late Dr. Rupert  Anton of South Africa.  This Cabernet Sauvignon out of South Africa is an incredible value.  This 2012 vintage is perfect to drink now, it’s elegant, full-bodied and has hints of roasted coffee.   And you get to taste a bit of Rothschild for just $35 a bottle, so I think this is an affordable  treat!

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I am conducting a winetasting next Friday night, I’m really looking forward to trying some new wines with this group.   I’ll be sure and share those experiences with you next Saturday

Till next week, Cheers

Darlene