Wine Searcher

  • Another Argentinian Wines

    MERLOT

    Argentine winesThis wine is particularly fruity, particularly suggesting plum and bilberry with a hint of blackberry. It harmonious taste a mild tannin make this a pleasant charmer. Drinking temperature is 57.2- 59°F (14-15°C) .

    This is a very dark-coloured wine with intense aromatic power (spices, pepper, vanilla, toast, and red fruits). It is full-bodied, possesses great strength but is not strongly tannic to the tongue with a rounded and mild aftertaste. Drinking temperature is 60.8-62°F (16- 17°C).

     

    CABERNET SAUVIGNON

    This a classic wine produced from the wonderful Bordeaux grape but it possesses less tannin than its French counterparts. The bouquet is reminiscent of red and blue woodland fruits with hints of wood and nuts. The taste is soft, full, and rounded with a long and pleasing aftertaste. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C) .

    The best Cabernet Sauvignon wines are aged in wood for a long period as in France. These top wines such as Pond de Cave Cabernet Sauvignon of Trapiche possess greater aromatic power than their younger counterparts. They have a bouquet of cedarwood, tobacco, vanilla, chocolate, and lots of ripe fruit (such as blackcurrant). Drinking temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16- 17°C).

     

    MALBEC

    Malbec and Torrontes form the flagship of Argentine wine. These grapes from south-western France thrive here, especially in Lujan de Cuyo. The colour is dark red tinged with purple and the bouquet is reminiscent of blackcurrants, raspberries, cherries, and plums. The structure and tannin are both strong but mellow with age to form a superb full-bodied and rounded wine of great complexity. Drinking temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16- 17°C).

     

    MALBEC LUJAN DE CUYO DENOMINACION DE ORIGEN CONTROLADA

    This is the apotheosis of Argentine wines. Only the very best wines are permitted to carry this fiercely sought denomination of origin and they must contain at least SO percent Malbec, all of which must come from the Luca de Cuyo area. The finest of these is probably the Vifia de Santa Isabel Malbec Lujan de Cuyo DOC from the Casa Vinfcola Nieto y Senetiner. It possesses an intense ruby red colouring with purple tinges and has a very fresh and fruity bouquet of red fruit, honey, and vanilla with suggestions of chocolate and sweet wood.

    It is an extremely complex wine that is both refined and powerful, full-bodied and rounded, with great potential for keeping. If this wine is a foretaste of what can be expected from Lujan de Cayo in this new century then let there be more. Drinking temperature is 62.6- 64.4°F(17-18°C).

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  • Another French Wines

    CLAIRETTE DU LANGUEDOC

    The white Clairette grape is one of the oldest varieties and Clairette de Languedoc is one of the oldest and smallest appellations of Languedoc. The vineyards are situated on the hills of the Herault valley, south of Lodeve, approx. 30 km (19 miles) from the sea.

    Drinking temperature this French wine: 10-12°C (50-53.6°F).

     

    MUSCAT DE MIREVAL

    This is a vin doux naturel from Mireval, between Montpellier and Sete. The vineyards are on the southern slopes of the Gardiole mountain which dominates the Vic lake. The ground is chalky with alluvium here and there and also rocks. This French wine is also made using the Muscat Petit Grains. It is a comforting, fruity wine that is almost like a liqueur.

    The charm of Muscat de Mireval is in its refined floral and fruity aromas of jasmine, lime blossom, citrus fruit, and raisins. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 6°C (42.8°F).

     

    MUSCAT DE FRONTIGNAN

    The Prontignan vineyards are slightly more southerly than those of Mireval, immediately north of Sete. This Muscat wine is stronger than the previous two and is even more like a liqueur. The bouquet is somewhat less aromatic than the other Muscat wines and generally somewhat coarser, though there are exceptions. The nose does contain recognisable notes of citrus fruit, overripe Muscat grapes or even of raisins. The best Muscat de Prontignan wines develop a superb nose of exotic fruit such as passion fruit, and peach, and are very elegant. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 6°C (42.8°F)

     

    FAUGERES

    The vineyards of Paugeres are slightly to the north of Beziers, situated on a gently rolling ridge of hills of shale. The area is off-the-beaten track, hilly, but both inviting and intimate. A lithe and silken red wine is produced in the small villages that both smells and taste of ripe fruit and liquorice. After several years of maturing the wine tends towards spicier aromas and notes of leather. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 14- 16°C (57 .2-60.8°F) .

    Paugeres also produces a little rose which combines the velvet smooth and fruity character of the red wine with a mellow freshness. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 12°C (53.6°F).

     

    ST CHINIAN

    Red and rose St Chin ian wines are produced at the foot of the Montagne Noire, north-east of Beziers. There are two different types of St Chinian: a light, playful wine that is lithe and comforting, with much fruitiness and a heavier, more powerful wine with nose of ripe fruit, bay laurel, and flint. The first type is drunk when young, preferable chilled(12-14°C/53.6-57.2°F) while the latter is better left a few years before drinking at 14-16°C (53.6-57.2°F) for a good taste and a good French wine. Drink the St Chinian rose at 12°C (53.6°F).

     

    MUSCAT DE ST-JEAN DE MINERVOIS

    The vineyards of St-Jean de Minervois lie amid the maquis and wild Provençal herbs at a height of 200 metres (656 feet) . The soil is a mixture of chalk and shale on a base of red clay. Here too the grape used is exclusively Muscat Petit Grains. A superb, very aromatic French wine is produced in this very small area of 159 hectares. Intense aromas of citrus fruit, fresh Muscat grapes, exotic fruit, and menthol are characteristic of Muscat de St-Jean de Minervois. In spite of its liqueur-like properties, this Muscat is still exceptionally fresh-tasting. Drinking temperature for this French wine 6°C (42.8°F).

     

    MINERVOIS

    The vineyards of Minervois, which are largely arranged on terraces, are situated in a triangle formed by Carcassonne, Narbonne and Beziers. The production is mainly of red French wine but if you search you will also find rose or even the rarer white Minervois. The red wine is fruity, refined, elegant, and well-balanced. There are as many different types of Minervois as there are different terroirs. In the Minervois the wine gives you a free lesson in geology with gneiss, chalk, shale, lignite, and alluvial deposits mixed together in the soil to give the Minervois its own character. Drink this rose French wine (12°C/53.6°F) and the red French wine at 14-16°C (57.2- 60.8°F).

     

    CABARDES

    Excellent rose and red French wines are produced from 331 hectares to the north of the fine Medieval town of Carcassonne. Drinking temperature for French wine: 14- 16°C (57.2- 60.8°F) .

     

    MALEPERE

    This is the most westerly wine-growing area of the Languedoc, located in the triangle formed by Carcassonne, Limoux, and Castelnaudary. Malepere is in the process of achieving Appellation Controlee status. The rose and red French wines from here are fairly light and fruity. Drinking temperature for this French wine: rose 12°C (53 .6°F) , red 14- 16°C (57 .2- 60.8°F) .

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  • Australian Wines

      Australia produces and sells many different types of wine. Those that come from one area are characterised by the combination of terroir and grape variety.

    The wines are very aromatic with characteristic vegetal undertones such as freshly sliced green peppers (paprika).The taste is fresh and lively and less taut than that of a white Bordeaux. Drinking temperature is 46.4- 50°F (8- 10°C) .The type of oak (French, American, or  German) used for the casks is also very important. Pinally, the price of the wine also has a great bearing on the eventual complexity of the wine but in general every bottle of Australian wine offers value for money or even better.

    The following descriptions are intended to stimulate you to do your own research.

    SPARKLING WINES

    In view of the remarkably low price it is best to choose a true traditional method sparkler that has undergone a second fermentation in the bottle. The white Brut sparkling wines are usually fresh and fruity with sometimes vegetal undertones. Drinking temperature is 46.4°F (8°C). The Rose Brut sparkling wines are generally somewhat less dry than the whites. The nose is very fruity with a slight hint of acid drops, strawberry, cherry, and raspberry.Drinking temperature is 42.8-46.4°F (6- 8°C) .

    CHARDONNAY

    This is the success of the Australian wine industry in the past twenty years. The simple, young, Chardonnay that is not cask aged is a nice wine that can be very pleasant but the best ones are cask aged. The wine is fully ripened with an intense colour, very complex structure, and wonderful nose containing exotic and citrus fruit with earthy undertones and suggestions of toast and nuts. Drinking temperature is 50- 53.6°F/10- 12°C (unoaked) or 53.6-57.2°F/12- 14°C (barrel select).

    SEMILLON

    As strange as it may seem this typical Bordeaux grape used in e.g. Sauternes, produces a surprising wine in Australia that closely resembles a white Burgundy. This is why it is often blended with Chardonnay.

    Semillon is a somewhat strange term in Australia though for some areas call it Chenin Blanc, Crouchen, or even Riesling, such as in the Hunter Valley. The true Australian Semillon though is superb. The bouquet is reminiscent of ripe and sweet fruit with suggestions of citrus fruit and flowers .

    Drinking temperature is 50- 53.6°F (10- 12°C) .

    SEMILLON/CHARDONNAY

    This is a popular blend in Australia. This aromatic wine smells of fresh citrus fruit, peach, apricot, and tropical fruit. The Chardonnay imparts a buttery character and the complexity while Semillon and the oak provide smoothness and the rounded taste. A little Colombard is also often added to this blend to make the wine slightly fresher. Drinking temperature is 50- 53.6°F (10- 12°C).

    SAUVIGNON BLANC

    Australian Sauvignon Blanc resembles a good Sancerre rather than a white Bordeaux. Both these French areas grow Sauvignon as their basic variety.

     The wines are very aromatic with characteristic vegetal undertones such as freshly sliced green peppers (paprika).The taste is fresh and lively and less taut than that of a white Bordeaux. Drinking temperature is 46.4- 50°F (8- 10°C) .

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  • Blanquette de Limoux - French wine

    BLANQUETTE DE LlMOUX METHODE ANCESTRALE

    This Blanquette is made according to an ancient method in which the wine from 100 per cent Mauzac grapes ferment until there is only 100 grams of sugar per litre remaining. The fermentation is stopped by tapping the must and filtering it. This French wine that is not fully fermented is then bottled and through warmth a second fermentation occurs in the bottle. When the right balance between alcohol (5- 7%), sugars (approx. 70 grams per litre) , and the pressure in the bottle is achieved, the fermentation is abruptly halted by chilling the bottle. The colour of this French wine is straw yellow and not always clear. Since this is an ancient traditional method with little modern technology the wine can contain sediments of unfermented sugars and dead yeast cells. The scent is similar to a ripe Goudreinet apple. The taste is fresh due to the 4.5 grams per litre of acidity and the presence of the carbonic acid gas combined with fruitiness and softness imparted by the sugar residues. This French wine is low in alcohol (7%). Drinking temperature for this French wine: 6°C (42.8 °F).

    LlMOUX

    In addition to the better-known sparkling French wines, excellent white wines are also produced here. These must contain a minimum 15 per cent of Mauzac grapes but may be supplemented with Chardonnay and Chenin Blanc. The local Cave des Sieurs d' Arques manages to achieve sublime heights with this still Limoux wine, of which four different types, each with its own terroir are made. The Terroir Mediterranee is a rounded, harmonious and lithe wine with much fruitiness. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 12°C (53 .6°F) .

    The Terroir Oceanique is somewhat lighter coloured than the others. It has wonderful scents of citrus fruits that are fine and elegant. The taste is fruity with a hint of iodine. This French wine is very fresh and elegant. Drinking temperature for French wine:12- 14°C (53 .6- 57.2°F).

    The Terroir d'Autan is yellow with golden tinges. It has intense aromas with a finish of preserved fruit, and is broad, rounded, and fruity in flavour. Drinking temperature for French wine: 12-14°C (53.6- 57.2°F) .

    The Terroir Haute Vallee is yellow with golden tinges and has delicate scents of white flowers combined with a very harmonious taste that is rounded, fresh, and both subtle and complex. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 12- 14°C (53.6-57.2°F).

    The Cave Cooperative des Sieurs d'Arques also produces pleasing Vins de Pays and vins de cepage.

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  • CUVÉES FROM HUNGARY

    CUVÉES HUNGARIAN WINE

    Hungarian Wine CuveeA cuvée is generally a better class of wine. These Hungarian wine are made from various combinations such as the classic Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot, or Franco-Hungarian Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc with Kékfrankôs or Kékoportô), pure Hungarian Kékfrankôs and Kékofrankôs, Austro-Hungarian Blauburger, Zweigelt, Kékfrankôs, Kékofrankôs, or French in style Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir with an impossible accent.

    There are countless excellent cuvées that each has its own character and taste. The best classical ones come from Polgar, Bock, Tarnas and Attila Gere, and Tiffan. Tiffan and Vylyan make the best Hungarian and Austro-Hungarian style cuvées, while Bock and Vylyan specialise in unusual cuvées of Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon.

  • Gattinara - Italian Red Wine

    Gattinara DOCG

    The Nebblio grape is also the basis for Gattinara. This red wine originates from around Gattinara in the province of Vercelli.

    Gattinara has enjoyed great fame for centuries, despite its low levels of production. The wine's colour is dark granite red with an orange tinge. The bouquet is finer than that of either Barolo or Barbaresco and tends towards floral notes, such as violets. The taste is less pronounced than the two tough brethren from Piedmont but it remains very much a masculine wine that is full, well-balanced, and rich. In particular Gattinara has a characteristic bitter note in its finish that makes it a perfect companion for roast beef or game.

    An ordinary Gattinara must be at least three years old and contains at least 12.5% alcohol, a Riserva is at least four years old and contains 13% alcohol. In the best vintage years (with ample sun) a Gattinara will leave a Barolo far behind. Drinking temperature 57.2- 60.8°F (14- 16°C).

     

    BARBERA DOC

    There are three types of wine produced with the Barbera grape. All three are ruby red when young and granite red when mature. This wine is not suitable for drinking when young because it is so high in tannin. With a few years ageing in the bottle the wine becomes more full-bodied and more amenable. Choose the slightly more alcoholic Superiore version which is more balanced. Barbera d'Alba is only made with Barbera grapes but Barbera d'Asti and Barbera del Monferrato are permitted a maximum of 15% Preisa, Grignolino, or Dolcetto. In contrast with the other two, Barbera del Monferrato sometimes has a slight sweetness and a little carbonic acid to tingle the tongue. Drinking temperature 55.4-59°F (13- 15°C).

     

    DOLCETTO DOC

    Of all the wines made with Dolcetto grapes the best known is the Alba, although it is not necessarily the best. Dolcetto d' Alba is reddish purple and has a pleasant fruity nose and full flavour with a slight bitterness that is reminiscent of bay leaves. It is possible with most Dolcetto wines to choose a Superiore version, that has slightly higher alcohol.

    Drink this wine with any main dish of red meat, poultry, or roasted pork. Drinking temperature is 53.6-59°F (12- 15°C).

    The range of Dolcetto wines are: Dolcetto d'Acqui,Dolcetto d'Alba, Dolcetto d'Asti, Dolcetto delle Langhe Monregalesi, Dolcetto di Diano d' Alba, Dolcetto di Dogliani, and Dolcetto d'Ovada.

     

    FREISA DOC

    Preisa is a long established grape of Piedmont. The name coincidentally resembles the word fraise for strawberry (fragole in Italian) but this special red wine often tastes of strawberries and raspberries, with a hint too of roses. There are two Preisa DOC wines: those of Asti and the other from Chieri. Both are available as dry (secco) or sweet (amabile), still, lightly sparkling (frizzante), or naturally sparkling (spumante naturale) . This relic of the past must be tried if visiting Piedmont. Choose the better rather than cheaper varieties which are often unstable and continue to ferment in the bottle. Drinking temperature for dry Preisa is 50- 53.6°F (10- 12°C) , and 42.8-46.4°F (6- 8°C) for sweet and sparkling types.

     

    GAVI/CORTESE DI GAVI DOC

    These are a pair of the few white wines from Piedmont.  The popularity of Gavi or Cortese di Gavi surpasses its actual quality, although it is a good, fresh, delicate, and quite dry, available as frizzante and spumante with the Gavi label. These are excellent wines for drinking with fish. Drinking temperature 46.4-50°F (8- 10°C).

     

    GHEMME DOC

    This is one of the best red from northern Italy for quality and price. It does not achieve the standard of top Nebbiolo wines such as Barolo, Barbaresco, or Gattinara, but a good Ghemme costs significantly less and offers a great deal of pleasure in its drinking. The colour is deep granite red, the bouquet is intense and very pleasing and refined, with floral notes including violets. The wine is full of flavour, rounded, with a lightly bitterness in its finish.

    A good Ghemme needs to mature for at least four years before being sold. You are unlikely to be disappointed if you buy a Ghemme. Drinking temperature 57.2- 60.8°F (14- 16°C).

     

    MALVASIA DOC

    Two DOC wines are made from Malvasia in Piedmont: Malvasia di Casorzo d'Asti and Malvasia di Castelnuovo Don Bosco. Although from different varieties of Malvasia, the wines are similar.

     Both sweet red wines have a fruity nose and taste and often possess a light tingle of carbonic acid. They are especially popular for their relatively low alcohol content of 11- 12%. Drink at 46.4- 50°F (8- 10°C) .

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  • Klein Karoo Wine Region - South Africa

       Finally the largest wine region of South Africa is Klein Karoo, which is also the most easterly area. It is very hot in summer here and irrigation is essential. Klein Karoo is famous for its sweet fortified wine but also for the surprisingly fresh and fruity Steen (Chenin Blanc).

    CAPE RIESLlNG/KAAPSE RIESLING

    In spite of the name this is not Riesling as we know it in Europe but a different grape, the Crouchen Blanc, of which the origins are unclear. It is often used to make very acceptable table wines but also produces some good firm wines with interesting vegetal aromas such as straw and grass. Drinking temperature is 46.4-50°F (8-10°C).

    COLOMBARDAfrican Chardonnay

    This grape variety hails originally from the French south-west, origins of most of the Huguenots. Its yields fresh and fruity wines that are excellent as an aperitif or to served with grilled fish. Drinking temperature is 46.4-50°F (8-10°C).

    STEEN (CHENIN BLANC)

    These grapes originate from the Loire. The grape is particularly used for its fine acidity. In South Africa though it delivers surprisingly mellow wines that are almost sweet as well as dry as chalk examples that are fresh and fruity. Drinking temperature is 46.4-50°F (8-10°C).

    SAUVIGNON BLANC

    Also known on occasion as Pume Blanc as in the United States. South African Sauvignon Blanc wines are very herbal with definite notes of grass, with peppery undertones. The taste is fresh, dry, aromatic, and beautifully rounded. Drinking temperature is 46.4-50°F (8-10°C).

    CHARDONNAY

    This Burgundian grape also thrives in South Africa. The special cuvees in particular, that are aged in oak barrels, are extremely exciting. Chardonnay is fruity, rich, and rounded with a robust taste. Drinking temperature is 50-53.6°F (10- 12°C).

    PINOTAGE

    This grape is the true South African speciality. It was formed from a cross based on old root stock with Pinot Noir, and Cinsault (known locally as Hermitage) about which little is known. The variety was created by Prof. Abraham Perold in 1925 and it combines the reliability of Cinsault in terms of volume and quality, even in poor years, with the finesse of Pinot Noir.

    Most of the wines are drunk still too young but there are certain top quality Pinotage wines such as Kanonskop which aged well (five to ten years).

     Pinotage smells and tastes of dark ripe fruit with hints of spices. Some of the best Pinotage wines contain quite substantial tannin when they are young. A local speciality is 'Beesvleis Pinotage', which is a beef stew cooked in Pinotage. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C).

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  • Kunság and Hajós-Baja Regions

    KunsÁg Hungarian Wine

    Casks Aszu and Eszencia HunaryThe area of Kunság (known as Kiskunsag up to 1998) is on the Great Plain (Alfold) of Hungary to the south of the town of Kecskemet and extends to the small town of Hajos. This region does not have a real history of wine making, dating back to the end of the nineteenth century when it was found that phylloxera less readily affected vines grown on sandy soils such as those in the south of Hungary. The climate is also not ideal for Hungarian wine-growing with very hot and totally dry summers and extremely cold winters. This Hungarian wines from this area are mainly intended for sale as bulk wine and they have little to offer except the high alcohol of both reds and whites, and the syrupy nature of the white Hungarian wine. Drinking temperature is 8-10°C (46.4-50°F ) for white Hungarian wines and 12-16°C (53.6-60.8°F) for red Hungarian wines.

  • More Canadian Wines

    VIDAL MEDIUM DRY/LATE HARVEST

    This grape achieves its best I believe in sweeter wines. The bouquet of citrus and tropical fruits keeps the sultry,

    comforting ripeness of banana and honey in balance. The relatively high acidity also moderates the otherwise very sweet taste of the wine.

    RIESLING MEDIUM DRY/LATE HARVEST

    Pine medium dry to sweet wines are made from the noble Riesling here just as they are in Germany. The fresh and refined acidity of Riesling keeps the wine well balanced in spite of its cosseting sweetness. There are very attractive floral aromas and also apple, peach, and honey with the sweeter Late Harvest, and the occasional mineral undertones. Drinking temperature is 46.4-53.6°F (8- 10°C).

    ICE-WINE

    Ice-wine is probably the best-known Canadian speciality. The best of these wines walk off with major prizes at the majority of the international exhibitions. Ice-wine can in principle be made from any type of grape including red varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon or Pranc, but with a few exceptions the most interesting of them are produced from Vidal and Riesling. The method of making Icewines is the same as that for making German or Austrian Eiswein and French Vins de Glace from the south-west of France.

    The grapes are allowed to hang until frozen by the frost. They are then quickly pressed and the tasteless frozen liquid remains behind with the seeds and skins, with only the honey sweet juices emerging from the press.

    These juices are so concentrated that the yeast cells which can normally live up to a level of alcohol of 15% are finished by 8 or 9%. Ice-wines are very complex, powerful, extremely aromatic wines with notes such as apricot, peach, sweet melon, and honey with Vidal grapes and tropical flowers, apricot, citrus fruit, toffee, and vegetal nuances with Riesling. To gain double the pleasure serve it cold at 46.4-53.6°F (8- 10°C) but then allow it to warm up slowly.

    ROSE

    Most Canadian roses are very lightly structured and not terribly interesting. They are certainly fruity but despite good acidity and reasonable complexity most are knocked back like soft drinks. Drinking temperature is 50- 53.6°F (1O-12°C).

    BACO NOIR

    This is an extremely surprising French-Canadian hybrid which produces quite exciting results in Canada with full-bodied wines with lots of juice and taste that are very scented with suggestions of blackcurrant, blueberries, tobacco, and animal undertones. Some top Baco Noirs slightly resemble better Rhone Syrah wines. Drinking temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16-17°C).

    PINOT NOIR

    The typical bouquet is of woodland fruits, cherry, and a hint of wild strawberry which when older become more rustic notes of leather, animal, and humus. Drinking temperature is 57,2- 60.8°F (14- 16°C).

    CABERNET

    Bear in mind that many Canadian Cabernet wines are a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Pranc but may also contain Merlot. These are generally well-made wines but the best of them are simply fantastic. They have constantly caused great surprise in blind tastings with their power, complexity, seductive fruitiness, and elegant tannin. Drinking temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16-17°C).

    Other wines

    The best wine houses also make excellent Sauvignon Blancs, Aligotes, Gamay Blancs and Rouges. These wines are not very abundant though.

    Recommended wines

    The following wines from the best Canadian wineries are well worth trying.

    - Ontario: Chateau des Charmes, Hildebrand Estates Winery, Inniskillin, Marijnissen Estates, Reif Estate Winery (all Niagara-on-the-Lake); D'Angelo (Amherstburg); Henry of Pelham (St. Catharines); Stoney Ridge Cellars (Winona); Lakeview Cellars (Vineland); Cave Spring Cellars (Jordan); Colio Estate (Harrow); and Pelee Island Winery (Kingsville) .

    - British Columbia: Calona Vineyards, Quails' Gate, Summerhill, Mission Hill, Cedar Creek, St. Humbertus (all Kelowna); Hawthorne Mountains, Inniskillin Okanoga, Jackson Triggs, Peller Estate (Okanoga); Domaine Combret, Tinhorn Creek (Oliver); and Langley's Estate Winery (Langley).

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  • More Swiss wines

    PAIEN SWISS WINE

    Paien Swiss WineThe Swiss wines made from Paien or Heida, as it is also known (meaning heaths), are quite unusual. Grapes grow on this very ancient native variety at altitudes of more than 1,000 metres (3,280 feet). In the Jura and Savoie in Prance it is known as Savagnin, Traminer in Alsace and certain German vineyards, and Tramini in Italy. This Swiss wine is fresh and quite dry with recognisable fresh nose of green apples. Drinking temperature is 8- 10C (46.4-50°F).

     

    RÈZE SWISS WINE

    The rare Rèze grape is still used piecemeal in Anniviers to make wine. This Yin des Glaciers ('glacier' wine) is remarkably tart and green if drunk young. Allow it to age though and it develops a quite unusual but exciting nose. Drinking temperature for Rèze Swiss wine is 6- 9°C (42 .8-48.2°F) .

  • More wine from Chile

     SEMILLON

    The ordinary wine of this noble Bordeaux grape here is fresh and intensely aromatic (citrus fruits including grapefruit with occasional hint of vanilla).

    This dry wine is balanced, rich, full-bodied and strongly alcoholic (13- 14%). Its alcoholic strength makes it Sparkling wines Chile produces a number of sparkling wines varying from moderate to excellent.

    Choose one of the better ones such as Vifia Miguel Torres Brut Nature which has a fresh spring-like aroma of meadow flowers combined with luxuriant white tropical fruits and a fresh but delicate taste of Chardonnay with the full, rich, and rounded taste of Pinot Noir. Drinking temperature is 42.8-46.4°F (6-8°C).

     

    CABERNET SAUVIGNON

    This noble Bordeaux grape also produces classic, elegant, and complex wines in Chile. The ordinary Cabernet Sauvignon is fresh and fruity but it is worth while buying the better wines such as Reserva and Gran Reserva. These offer much richer bouquets and greater complexity for very little extra.

    The colour is dark ruby red with the occasional tinge of brown. The aroma is reminiscent of plum, blackcurrant, strawberry, mint, and pepper with undertones of vanilla, chocolate, nuts, cedarwood, tobacco, and toast.When young this wine is very tannic but the tannin is more muted after two to three years. Drinking

    temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16- 17°C) .

     

    MERLOT

    This is another classic Bordeaux grape that thrives here. The wine is dark ruby, cherry, or granite red with some purple tinges here and there. Plum, blackcurrant, blueberry, black cherry, morello cherry, and strawberries can be detected in the bouquet with undertones of pepper, mint, green herbs, wood, and vanilla.

    The tannin is mainly mellow and the taste full and rounded. These Chilean Merlots readily charm and are suited for drinking with lighter meat dishes. Drinking temperature is 57.2-60.8°F (14- 16°C).

     

    PINOT NOIR

    This fairly rare wine is certainly worth trying to find. The colour is a fairly pale ruby red with purple tinges.

     The bouquet is fresh and fruity (including rose hip) and the taste is generous, approachable, and specially pleasing. Hints of herbs and spices can be detected in the prolonged aftertaste. Drinking temperature is 57.2-60.8°F (14- 16°C).

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  • More wine regions from Klein Karoo

    CABERNET SAUVIGNON

    This is the ubiquitous Bordeaux grape variety. Here in South Africa, Cabernet Sauvignon produces sturdy, highly tannic wines with herbal aromas and hints of red fruit and blackcurrant.

    There is a good balance between fruit and ripe woody notes. It is superb with red meat and mature hard cheeses. Drinking temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16-17°C).

    MERLOT

    This Bordeaux grape appears to be gaining ground in South Africa, especially in the Stellenbosch and Paarl regions. Merlot is a full-bodied and velvet smooth wine with rich and warm nuances that include cherry. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C).

    PINOT NOIR

    This grape, like Chardonnay originates in Burgundy. It is a fairly temperamental variety which only produces excellent results in good hands and in good years. A good Pinot Noir is characteristically light in colour and quite aromatic with herbal notes and those of red fruit in its nose. Drinking temperature is 57.2-60.8°F (14-16°C).

    SHIRAZ

    The Shiraz here is often an amenable if not slightly exotic wine with sensual nose and taste. This wine is often excellent with plenty of warmth and spicy undertones and is ideal with grilled lamb or game. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C) .

    TlNTA BAROCCA

    Tinta Barocca is a surprising wine that is full-bodied, warm, exciting, but also fruity, elegant, and refined. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C).

    BLENDS

    The Bordeaux type blends of Cabernet Sauvignon/Cabernet Pranc/Merlot (Meerlust Rubicon) are often excellent, especially where the process of cask maturing in oak is well done. These are superb, fullbodied, rich, and complex wines with blackcurrant and bilberry in their bouquet, mixed with spices and vanilla.

     Cabernet-Shiraz are very exciting wines which often age extremely well. Serve this full-bodied, warm, powerful, and complex wine with roast or grilled meat or mature hard cheese. The fairly new Pinotage-Merlots are quite promising. This is a wine filled with taste that combines spice and fruit. Drinking temperature is 60.8- 62.6°F (16-17°C).

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  • Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh/Jurançon French Wines

    Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh Wines

    The Vic-Bilh wine-growing area is the same one that produces Madiran. This area produces the red Madiran wine and dry, medium sweet, and sweet French white wines as Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh. Pacherenc is derived from the Basque or Gascon word for little berry or grape. The ideal soil for this white French wine is a mixture of clay and sandstone. The grapes used are the native Arrufiac, Petit Manseng, Gros Manseng, and Courbu, with a little Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon being used for the modern type of French wine.

    Pacherenc du Vic-BilhDry Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh is very aromatic with floral notes and hints of citrus fruit combined with a full taste of ripe and preserved fruits. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 10- 12°C (50- 53.6°F). The medium-sweet or sweet Pacherenc du Vic-Bilh shares the aromatic properties ofthe dry wine (citrus fruit, preserved fruit, dried fruit, and flowers) with the addition of a little honey, toast, and exotic fruit. The texture and taste are fuller, fatter, more fleshy, and juicy. Drinking temperature for French wine: 8-10°C ( 46.4-50° F).

    Your attention is drawn to the excellent quality of the local vins de pays des Cotes de Gascogne and the   many vins de cepages. The vins de pays des Cotes de Gascogne of Colombard, Gros Manseng, and Sauvignon (white French wines) and reds of Egiodola, Tannat and Cabernet Sauvignon, together with those from Jurançon are worth a separate mention.

     

    Jurançon Wines

    Juracon Label WineThis wine-growing area, south of Pau and close to the French Pyrenees, is slightly less ancient than its predecessors. The first signs of wine-growing date back only to the tenth century. Jurançon was one of the first AC status French wines in 1936 and Jurançon Sec acquired its own recognition in 1975.

     

    The wine-growing

    The area is barely larger than 600 hectares with the vineyards being dispersed throughout the district. They can be found strung out along a 40 km (25 miles) stretch like small islands amidst the other greenery. The better French wines are produced on hills of about 300 metres (984 feet) high with soil of clay, sandstone, and boulders.

    The climate is a mixture of high and regular rainfall from the Atlantic combined with the harsh winters of the Pyrenees. The area does though appear always to be blessed with warm autumns and dry southerly winds that make it possible for the grapes to be left to overripen in order to make a great sweet French wine. The grapes used for Jurançon are the native Gros Manseng, Petit Manseng, Courbu, Camaralet, and Lauzet. Jurançon Sec is truly dry with fresh acidity, with floral notes (broom and acacia) and fruity aromas (passion fruit, white peach, and citrus fruit) . As the French wine matures it develops a more complex bouquet with almond and other nuts, dried fruit, and sometimes a marked suggestion of truffle. Drinking temperature for this French wine: 8- 10°C (46.4-50°F) .

    Either Jurançon Doux or Moelleux are little gems. The colour drifts between gold and amber, the bouquet is fine and complex, varying from honey, vanilla, toast and preserved fruit to the subtlest hints of white flowers, lime blossom, camomile, pineapple, and citrus fruit. The taste is full and rounded for this French wine. The high sugar content is perfectly balanced with fresh acidity. This sweet French wine can be kept for a very long time. Drinking temperature this French wine: 10-12°C (50- 53.6°F).

     

    Bearn-Bellocq

    Beam is fairly hilly, lying at the foot of the Pyrenees where it enjoys an ideal microclimate that combines Atlantic moisture with a harsher mountain climate. Bearn white French wine is quite rare and is produced in the vicinity of Bellocq. This white French wine made with Raffiat and Manseng grapes is fresh and fruity with an undertone of floral notes (broom, acacia) . Drinking temperature for this white French wine: 10- 12°C (50- 53.6°F) .

    The more widely available Rose de Beam owes its charm to the combination of Tannat with Cabernet

    Sauvignon and Cabernet Pranc (better known in this locality as Bouchy). This is a wonderful rose that is velvet smooth, full-bodied, rounded, and very fruity. Drinking temperature for this rose French wine: 10- 12°C (50- 53 .6°F).

    The more straightforward Bearn red is lightweight but comforting and easily consumed. The taste and scent tend more towards Cabernet Pranc than Tannat. Drinking temperature for this Bearn French wine: 12°C (53.6°F).

    The better Bearn-Bellocq red by contrast is sturdier, fuller, more full -bodied, and fleshier. Tannin clearly has the upper hand in this French wine. Drinking temperature for this red French wine: 14-16°C (57.2- 60.8°F) .{jcomments on}

     

  • Piemonte Wine

    Piemonte Wine LabelPiemonte (Piedmont) ITALY REGION

    The name describes the position of the area: “at the foot of the mountains”, which is the Alps and bounds Italy with France and Switzerland. Countless rivers flow from these mountains to create beautiful valleys in the lower area. The city of Piedmont is Turin (Torino), famous for its large industry. The rest of the area is traditional agricultural. Piemont has great tradition, which has had many successful generations of farmers. The local food is known for its strong herbs and spices. The Italian red wine is very powerful, especially those made with the Nebbiolo grape. Italian wine has been made in Piedmont for a long time, referenced both in Greek and Roman literature. Today Piedmont, with Tuscany, is a temple to the art of Italian wine making.

     

    ASTI SPUMANTE DOCG AND MOSCATOD ‘ASTIDOCG

    The sparkling Asti Spumante is made by a natural second fermentation or in tanks. The colour is clear, ranges from yellow to golden and the nose is reminiscent of Muscat grapes which form the basis of this Italian wine. The taste is fruity, sweet and is a good balance between acidity and sweetness. Women prefer this Italian wine chilled. The drinking temperature should be 6- 8°C (42.8-46.4°F). The bubbles of Moscato d’ Asti, made with Muscat (or Moscato) grapes, is clear straw yellow with an intense bouquet of Muscat grapes. It has an aromatic and sweet taste, and acidity leaves an impression on the palate. A genuine Moscato d' Asti Italian wine is not cheap. The drinking temperature should be 8-10°C (46.4-50°F). 

    Piemonte Map Wine

    BARBARESCO DOCG ITALIAN WINE

    This Italian red wine made with Nebbiolo, the name from the Bararesco district of the providence of Cuneo. It’s an exceptional Italian wine and deep red colouring. It’s very aromatic and has a rich flavor. The Italian wine when young can be harsh, but is fine after a few years lying down. Riserva Italian wine needs four years to age. The drinking temperature of Italian wine when young should be 13- 15°C (55.4- 59°F) but 16- 17°C (60.5-62.6°F ) when fully mature.

     

    BAROLO DOCG ITALIAN WINE

    Probably is the best known Italian wine from Piedmont. Barolo is also made with Nebbiolo and originates from Cuneo. This top Italian wine is a deep and dark granite red and has a aromatic bouquet, it is alcoholic at a minimum of 13%.

     

    Barolo, when young has a harshness of its tannin when drinking; leave it for at least five years. You can’t sell ordinary Barolo until at least three years. Riserva Italian wine must be at least five years old. The drinking temperature should be 16-18°C (60.8-64.4°F).

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  • Priorat Wine - Climate and Region

    Priorat climate and region

    Wine Cataluna Priorat The climate of Priorat is also different from elsewhere. The heat of a continental climate is moderated by the south-easterly mistral, while the cold and usually wet northerly winds are able to penetrate the valley. The winters are generally fairly cold but not extreme, while the summers are long, hot, and dry.

    The most widely used variety of grape in Priorat is the Garnacha (both Tinta and Peluda), often supplemented with Mazuelo (Cariñena). Garnacha Blanca, Macabeo, and a small amount of Pedro Ximénez are used for the rarer white Spanish wines and liqueur wines. J6WAGX3X62Z8

  • Puglia Italian Wines

    PRIMITIVO DI MANDURIA DOC ITALIAN WINE

    Primitivo di Manduria wineFour types of heavy and sultry red Italian wines are made here from Primitivo grapes that probably arrived from ancient Greece. The ordinary Primitivo has low residual sugars and 14% alcohol. The Dolce Naturale is clearly sweeter and contains at least 16% alcohol. Drinking temperature is 10-16°C (50-60.8°F) for the Secco Italian wine and ordinary Primitivo but 6-12°C (42.8-53.6°F) for the Dolce and Liquoroso Dolce Italian wine.

  • Saumur Rouge/ Cabernet/ Champigny French wines

    SAUMUR BLANC

    This is a dry white French wine produced with Chenin Blanc grapes, both with and without the addition of Chardonnay and Sauvignon. Served chilled, this subtle and fruity French wine is best as an accompaniment to lobster, crayfish, and freshwater fish. Drinking temperature for this Saumur Blanc French wine: 8-10°C (46.4- 50°F) .

    Por those who do not want to spend endless time searching for a white Saumur then the best to try is to be found at Souzay-Champigny. Very traditional style Saumur Blanc Sec is made here at the Chateau de Villeuneuve. So much power and grandeur is not to be found elsewhere along the Loire (and perhaps difficult to improve upon throughout France).

  • Savennieres French Wines

    SAVENNIERES

    This dry, sturdy wine is one of the best French white wines. The Chenin Blanc thrives at its best here in part due to the terroir of steep, rocky hills that are interspersed with slate and sand. The south to southeast siting is also ideal. Two exceptional French vineyards are permitted to carry their own name on the label: these are the Grand Crus of Savennieres-la-Couleede-Serrant and Savennieres-la-Roche-aux-Moines.

    Savennieres French winesThe first is special in being owned by just one person, Nicolas Joly, the guru of organic winegrowing in France. Savennieres wines are a perfect accompaniment to lobster, crab, crayfish, freshwater fish, or other shellfish. Drink temperature for this Savennieres French wine: 10-12°C (50-53.6°F).

  • South West French Wine Regions

    SOUTH WEST Wine Regions

    A massive wine producing area running from Bergerac to the west of Bordeaux, and stretching south to the Spanish frontier and south east to the Mediterranean.

    Red wine FranceGrapes

    Sauvignon Blanc.

    Semilion.

    Muscadelle.

    Cabernet Sauvignon.

    Cabernet Franc.

    Merlot.

    Malbec.

  • The Bergerac French Wines

    Montravel French wineMONTRAVEL

    The superb dry white Montravel is produced in the extreme west of the Dordogne. Here too modern French wine-making methods produce a wine that is very aromatic, and also velvet smooth in the mouth. Ordinary Montravel can be drunk young as a fruity French wine but can also be kept a couple of years. Better quality Montravel, which is first aged in oak, needs to be kept somewhat longer. Drinking temperature for Montravel French wine: 10-12°C (50-53.6°F) .

     

    COTES DE MONTRAVEL

    The slightly sweet Cotes de Montravel white French wine provides a subtle change between the dry white Montravel and the sweeter white Haut- Montravel. Drinking temperature: 10-12°C (50-53.6°F).

     

    HAUT-MONTRAVEL

    Haut-Montravel originates mainly from the banks of the river. It is generally a smooth French wine that is high in sugar but it has sufficient acidity to provide balance and enable the wine to be kept. Drinking temperature: 8- 10°C (46.4- 50°F) .

     

    COTES DE BERGERAC

    Cotes de Bergerac Moelleux, which is mainly produced with Semillon, can originate from throughout the area. It is darker in colour than the companion dry wines and it often has a greater bouquet, more finesse, and more body. The quality of the French wine is partially determined by the soil, but also by the grape variety and method of vinification.

    This French wine is ready to drink after four or five years but it can also be kept much longer. Drinking temperature: 8- 10°C (46.4-50°F) .

     

    ROSETTE

    Rosette Moelleux, comes from the sunny slopes north of the town of Bergerac but is rarely encountered outside the district. This is a pity because a good Rosette is always a masterpiece, pale straw yellow with an overwhelming bouquet of flowers and fruit.

    The elegant civility of this French wine and its fine acidity are in perfect balance. Drinking temperature for Rosette French wine: 9- 10°C (4S.2- 50°F).

     

    SAUSSIGNAC

    Haut-Montreal French wineSaussignac is very small area, consisting of a small valley between the vineyards of Monbazillac and the first vineyards of the Bordelais. This French wine from this district is mainly produced from old vineyards. Saussignac Moelleux is well balanced, lithe, and has a subtle aroma of honey, lime blossom, and grapefruit. Drinking temperature for Saussignac French wine: 10-12°C (50- 53.6°F). Saussignac Liquoreux are comforting, rounded wines that are broad and fat, with aromas of acacia and peach.

    Both French wines need to lay for a minimum of five to ten years before they are drunk. They are then absolute gems to be drunk at 9- 10°C (48.2 .2-50°F).

     

    MONBAZILLAC

    The honey sweet, liqueur like Monbazillac Liquoreux comes from the south bank of the Dordogne. The vineyards are on the northern slopes at a height of 50- 180 metres (164-590 feet), opposite the town of Bergerac. The good position and microclimate ensure plenty of moisture and warmth in the vineyard in autumn which enables Botrytis cinerea to develop, which is essential for the creation of truly great liqueur type French wines.

    Monbazillac should certainly not be drunk too cold, say 6-8°C (42.8- 46.4°F) for the lighter types but 10- 12°C (50- 53 .6°F) for the richer French wines. This enables the sumptuous scent of acacia and honey to develop fully and the broad range in the taste also has the chance to be fully appreciated.

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