Archive for November, 2008

Marton Andina: Serrera Bonarda 2007 – Hints of Caramel

November 26th, 2008  |  Published in Featured Wines, Serrera

In Argentina’s long winemaking history, up until only recently the Bonarda grape was the most widely-planted red grape for wine production in Argentina (it has since been surpassed by the mighty Malbec).

serrera bonarda ontario spectrum wines woodside wine clubOf Italian origins, Bonarda in Argentina can produce a wide range of lighter to heavier bodied wine, the latter of which tend to display characteristic fig and raisin flavours. While it’s not yet very common in Ontario, we anticipate that in the near future it will be.

Serrera Bonarda 2007 is one that has caught our attention. It’s an excellent Bonarda with lovely, playful notes of caramel on both the nose and palate.

Tasting notes:
Deep, intense purple color, bright, with violet hints. An aromatic display of floral and minted notes, with hints of caramel. Balanced and harmonious in the mouth, it has good structure and expresses finesse and finishes long.

Serrera Bonarda 2007 by Marton Andina
- Available exclusively to the Woodside Wine Appreciation Club in Ontario [BUY]

Tags: , , , , ,

Epilogue: The Ottawa Wine & Food Show 2008

November 17th, 2008  |  Published in Wine Events

From November 7th to 9th, a selection of fine Argentine wines available through the Woodside Wine Appreciation Club was shared with thousands of wine enthusiasts at the 23rd annual Ottawa Wine and Food Show.

Woodside wine appreciation club argentine wines ontario

Patrons of the show were able to sample a number of our very special (award-winning) small-production wines including:

tempus tempranillo alba 2006 gold medal ottawa- Tempus Alba Tempranillo (Gold medal, New World reds over $15)

- Tempus Alba Malbec (Silver medal, New World reds over $15)

- Clos de Chacras Cavas de Crianza Merlot (Gold medal, Merlot over $15)

- Finca El Peral Reserva (Silver medal, Bordeaux blends under $15)

- Finca El Peral Cabernet Sauvignon

- Finca El Peral Chardonnay

- Hacienda del Plata Zagal Malbec

- Hacienda del Plata Arriero Syrah

- Pulmary Estates CUQ Rosado

All were very well-received by tasters.  Among those who enjoyed sampling these wines were a number of judges from the Cellars of the World competition, members of the National Capital Sommelier Guild, and the media.

We’re really excited to be expanding the club’s reach to the nation’s capital, and we’d like to send a special welcome to the Ottawaians who are the newest members of our growing club.

A special thanks to club members Marie and Mike for lending much appreciated helping hands.

Artisan Argentine Wines Excel at the 2008 Cellars of the World Competition

November 2nd, 2008  |  Published in Featured Wines, Wine Events

With great pleasure we announce that four fabulous artisan Argentine wines have been awarded medals at the international 2008 Cellars of the World competition in Ottawa, Canada. These, along with additional fine Argentine wines, will be available for tasting at the Spectrum Wines booth at the 23rd Annual Ottawa Food & Wine Show from November 7th to 9th, 2008.

cellars of the world 2008 argentina awards

Earning GOLD medals:
- Cavas de Crianza Merlot 2005 from Clos de Chacras
- Tempus Tempranillo 2006 from Tempus Alba

Earning SILVER medals:
- Finca El Peral Reserva 2006 from Bodega Los Cerrillos
- Tempus Malbec 2006 from Tempus Alba

Congratulations to these winners. It’s wonderful to see the quality and value of Argentine wines gain widespread international recognition, not only for their signature grape, Malbec, but also for other outstanding varietals that are being artfully crafted in the Mendoza region.

All four of these award-winning wines are available in Ontario, Canada exclusively to the Woodside Wine Appreciation Club [BUY].

Tags: , , , , , ,

Tempus Alba: Tempus Malbec 2007 – Velvety Tannins

November 2nd, 2008  |  Published in Featured Wines, Tempus Alba

Argentina continues to share its sunshine and Andean melt-water by consistently crafting high-quality Malbec wines for us to enjoy here in Ontario. Whether or not being referred to as “the next Shiraz” is an accurate comparison, there’s certainly a lot of love to be had for Argentine Malbec.

Tempus Alba Tempus Malbec 2006 ontarioTempus Malbec 2007, from artisan Argentine winemaker Jose Luis Biondolillo of Tempus Alba, is an fine example of quality and value. Expressing excellent varietal character, and exhibiting smooth, velvety tannins and incredibly harmonious balance, this Malbec received a silver medal in the international Cellars of the World 2008 competition in Ottawa, Canada (2006 vintage).

Tasting Notes:
Very deep violet colour, with an intense nose of plum and red fruit and hints of vanilla and mocha. In the mouth it’s well-balanced, fleshy, and carries velvety tannins for a long and lovely finish. Ready to drink now, and pairs especially well with beef, pizza, and hard cheeses.

Tempus Malbec by Tempus Alba
- Silver medal – 2008 Cellars of the World, Ottawa, Canada, November 2008 (2006 vintage)

- 90 pt rating by Wines & Spirits, February 2009 (2007 vintage)

- Available exclusively to the Woodside Wine Appreciation Club in Ontario [BUY]

Los Cerrillos: Finca El Peral Reserva 2007

November 2nd, 2008  |  Published in Featured Wines, Los Cerrillos

In France, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec, and Carmenere are often blended to produce Bordeaux wines. Here in Ontario, and in California, similar blends are created but called Meritage. In the UK such blends are often referred to as Claret.

Finca El Peral Reserva Los Cerrillos 2006
The art of blending various varietals to create tailored blend wines has a deep history and has extended to all wine-making corners of the world, including Argentina.

Winemaker Juan Pablo Michelini of Bodega Los Cerrillos has created an award-winning blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and Merlot.  In this blend, Cabernet Sauvignon adds structure and body, Malbec imparts fruit-forwardness, and Merlot adds a little gentle finesse.

*Tasting Notes:

Aromas of fruity black cherry, wild herbs and soft oak. Well-made and a very good price for its full body, complexity, and smooth integration of other components of acidic core and tannins. Shows its premium Argentine refinement and quality. Can be enjoyed now but should improve with age. Fabulous paired with grilled or barbecued red meats.

Finca El Peral Reserva 2007 by Bodega Los Cerrillos
- 33% Malbec, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot
- “A steal at $17″ ~ Tony Aspler (Wine Diary part 244, June 19th 2009) (2006 vintage)
- Silver medal – 2008 Cellars of the World, Ottawa, Canada, November 2008 (2006 vintage)
- Available exclusively to the Woodside Wine Appreciation Club in Ontario [BUY]
*Tasting notes by Genevieve Kennedy, Sommelier

Tags: , , , , , ,

Clos de Chacras: Cavas de Crianza Merlot 2005 – Gold Medal in Canada

November 2nd, 2008  |  Published in Clos de Chacras, Featured Wines

One of the most widely planted wine-producing grapes in the world, the relatively thin-skinned, early-ripening Merlot grape is often used in blended wines, where its finesse is often employed to temper bolder, more tannic grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. On its own, Merlot grapes tend to create approachable, single-varietal wines with medium to full body and playful aromas of spice and fruit.

Clos de Chacras Cavas de Crianza Merlot 2005In Argentina, the Uco Valley of the Mendoza region is now producing Merlot of highest quality, and joining other New World regions in bringing superior quality wines to the world stage.

Cavas de Crianza Merlot 2005 from artisan winemaker Mariano Quiroga at Clos de Chacras is a benchmark example of the quality wines of the region. This very small production wine impressed a panel of distinguished judges at the international Cellars of the World 2008 competition in Ottawa, Canada – winning a gold medal.

Tasting notes:

Exhibiting excellent varietal character, this deeply violet coloured Merlot has delicate yet intricate aromas of spice and fruit and gentle notes of vanilla and coffee from the oak aging process. On the palate it’s honest, with medium body and is harmoniously balanced with sweet tannins.

Cavas de Crianza Merlot 2005 by Clos De Chacras
- Gold Medal – Cellars of the World 2008 Ottawa, Canada, November 2008.
- Available for a limited time and very in limited quantity in Ontario, exclusively to the Woodside Wine Appreciation Club [BUY]

Tags: , , , , ,