Long Weekend Wine!

People with snack & wine (S. Tyrolean wine festival: Törggelen)

What’s better than a weekend – a Long Weekend!   For me, a long weekend is a chance to try new recipes, eat some good food, and of course, drink some great wine.  And that’s exactly what I did, and of course the grill was fired up!

I haven’t had a steak in a while, so that was one of my choices for the grill.  This is one of my favorite wines to go with steak.


It’s Angove McLaren Vale Shiraz from Australia.  This one is about $25.00 at the NLC and I love this wine.  It’s what Australian Shiraz is all about.  Aged for about 16 months in oak barrels before release, I know it will go well with all grilled food… but I love it with steak.

If that’s a little too pricey for you, this is another great McLaren Vale Shiraz from Australia that I really like.  De Bortoli McLaren Vale Shiraz is a great pick, and under $20 at the NLC.

Enjoyed a couple of great Malbecs from Argentina, including a Santa Julia Reserva Malbecs for about $15.  Great reasonably priced wine.

This wine is big and bold tasting, and boy, there’s nothing like a Malbec from the Mendoza region of Argentina.    I had this wine with a new recipe of chili and lime chicken with roasted potatoes and it was a great combination.

What does the long weekend mean for you?  Food?  Wine?  I look forward to hearing from you.


Birthday Wine – Part 2

In my last blog I had mentioned I had received NLC Gift Cards as gifts, and I was going to have a blast picking out some treat wines.  Well, I had a great time, and thought I would share with you some of my findings.


I had to pick up an Italian Barolo.

So I went with the Luigi Pira Barolo.  Keep in mind I haven’t had this yet.  It’s not easy to pick out a Barolo, our Howley Estates location has so many.  This is one of the lesser priced ones, but I can’t wait to try it.  It has been give 93.5 Ratings in 4 different reviews.   It sells for $43.54 a bottle at our NLC stores, still a great treat wine.

Had to get a bottle of Peter Lehman Clancy’s Shiraz.  Sells for $19.98 at the NLC and comes in a great tin container that makes a nice gift.  This is a great wine with a BBQ.   Natalie MacLean said it best when she described this wine as “Full-bodied with juicy ripe black fruit and a generous treatment of oak. Smoky finish”.

This is my go-to steak wine!   It’s Angove VS McLaren Vale Shiraz.  It’s $25.24 at the NLC and I discovered this wine one Friday evening, when I asked for a great Friday night wine that goes great with steak.  Since then, I have bought this wine to friend’s homes and it has never disappointed.  There’s a reason the McLaren Vale region is known for great Shiraz,  in my opinion, (that’s the name of the blog, after all!)  A rich full-bodied wine with hints of black currant (learned that in Level 1 wine class!)    Combined with flavors of oak and chocolate, I love this wine.

That’s it for this week.   As my friend Judy always says, “Life is too short to drink bad wine’.



Birthday Wine

Did I mention I have great friends.  I recently celebrated a birthday and received a few great wines.  I can’t wait to share some of these with friends.

 Bodega Septima Gran Reserva, 2009

This is a 2009 Bodega Septima Gran Reserva Malbec out of Argentina.  Great wine.   For those of you that love Italian Reds (I do!) you will love this one as well.  Italian immigration has been very important to the Argentine culture, second behind Spain, and you can taste the influences in this wine.  This rich complex fruity wine with hints of oak is a great treat wine.

Another wine I received from the Mendoza region of Argentina, was this one.  A 2008 Clos de los Siete.


I haven’t had it in a while, so I am really looking forward to uncorking it.   It’s a dark garnet color and the nose smells of cassis and rich leather.  You can smell oak and then the palate explodes with flavors of  dark cherries.  I love this wine, and I’ve had it with steak, grilled chicken and I find it very versatile.

I haven’t tried this next one yet… definitely going to be a treat bottle, but I’m looking forward to it.  It’s a 2009 Robert Mondavi Cabarnet Sauvignon.

Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

I have read up on the wine, and it’s a beauty.  I love Robert Mondavi wines, and had the pleasure of visiting his vineyard in Napa Valley a few years ago.    I’m told this wine is deep, dark and dense, with flavors of cinnamon, cocoa and sweet tasty oak.  I can’t wait.

I also received a couple of gift cards to the NLC and had a blast picking out some treat wines with those.  I will tell you about those next week.

In the meantime, have a great week, be kind to one another and I just read this – Wine, like duct tape to men – fixes everything.



Me & My Wine (part 2)

This is what my dream basement looks like!  My actual basement looks quite a bit different than this.   There is a wine rack in it, but sadly it is empty. LOL

I do, however, have 2 wine racks upstairs and that’s what I started writing about last weekend.  What’s in my wine rack.


Clos De Los Siete 2008, Mendoza Bottle

Had this one given to me yesterday as a gift.  Have I told you I have wonderful friends.  This is a great treat wine, and I am waiting to open it with friends.  Good friends always make a wine taste better.  Nice ruby-red colors, a hint of spice, choclatey plum flavors.  This Argentinian wine has never disappointed and I am looking forward

Rolf Binder Wines - Halcyon Cabernet Merlot 2008

I actually havent’ had this wine yet.  It was given to me as a Christmas gift, and its a 2008 Rolf Binder Halcyon Cabernet Merlot.  If anyone has tried it, I would love to hear from you.

Yes, I actually do own a bottle of wine that looks like this.  It’s the La Fiole Chateaunneuf du Pape.   This Chateaunneuf du Pape is light, flavorful, has been trashed in some reviews, given 94 out of 100 in other reviews.  I love the bottle, it’s a real conversation piece.  It looks like buried treasure.  Keep in mind it’s a non-vintage wine which means the grapes have come from several different years.  I like it.

Now I have a quick question before I go.  What kind of wine would you buy if you were given a gift certificate to the wine store?  Actually 2 gift certificates!  Please, send me your comments.  I have a wonderful opportunity to buy a bottle of ‘treat’ wine, and would love to hear from you.


Me & My Wine!

Ernest Hemingway said it best when he quoted, “Wine offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than possibly any other purely sensory thing which may be purchased.”

First,  let me start off by apologizing for my last wine blog on Vouvray and Chenin Blanc.  I had to erase it, because for some odd reason the first half of the blog got erased or deleted.  It just looked silly after that.

As most of you know,  I used to only drink red wines, but since taking the Level 1 Wine fundamentals course, I have started drinking and enjoying white wines as well, and having a lot of fun getting to know the world of white wines.

Most of my blogs have touched on which wine I was having with what food at the time or about great finds under $20.  Lately I have been enjoying some old favorites that I have probably written about in the past.   So, this time I thought I would share some of my favorite wines that I have in my rack now. (Wine rack people!)

Marqués de Riscal Reserva 2006One of my favorites.

Marques de Riscal Reserva Rioja.  I actually learned how to properly pronounce the wine in class.  Aged for 3 years, with at least one of them in oak, I just love the earthy aromatic spicy taste of this wine.  (I think I have myself talked into cracking open a bottle of this one tonight)  It sells for just about $26 at NLC.

Angove Family Winemakers McLaren Vale Vineyard Select Shiraz 2008 One of my favorites to have with a steak.

Angove Mclaren Vale Shiraz is about $25 in our liquor stores and a great great wine.   Deep vibrant color, rich plum and berry flavors on the palate, a hint of oak, if you are putting beef on the BBQ tonight, treat yourself to a bottle.

I have been blessed with very special friends and I am lucky enough to have two of these in my wine rack, both gifts from wonderful people.  I am saving them for something special.  Wolf Blass Grey Label Shiraz.  About $36 in our NLC stores in Newfoundland, what doesn’t this go with.  Meats, pasta, cream sauces – you know, all the calorie friendly foods. (Kidding!)  Perfect flavor, color and tannin.   It’s one of the reasons Australia and more particularly McLaren Vale, is known for the Shiraz.

So, that’s it for this week.  I have about 40 bottles of wine on hand at any given time so we’ll pick a few different ones next week.  In the meantime, ‘In Vino Veritas – In Wine There is Truth’.