De Morgenzon 2011 DMZ Syrah: Dark and Earthy from Stellenbosch

South Africa is one region I’ve had so little of, a real shame as good friends of ours are right smitten with the region. They’ve both traveled there and have fallen in love with the country and its wines. I make a point of providing a South African wine whenever we’re sharing a meal together. This one is…

Borgo di Colloredo 2010 Aglianico Terre Degli Osci

Aglianico is said to be the “Nebbiolo of Southern Italy”. To fully understand this comparison you need to know a bit about Nebbiolo. The most famous grape variety of the northern Italian region of Piemonte it is used in the highly sought after wines of Barolo and Barbaresco. It is said to have an essence of “tar and roses”, rustic…

Liberty School Cabernet Sauvignon 2013: from Paso Robles

My reviewing habits tend to be pretty scattered. Looking back over past few years of reviews there is a frequent switch between regions and varieties. Rarely do I drink wines from the same producer back to back but these past few weeks I did just that. It was more coincidental than purposeful as I bought this waiting for the…

Liberty School Zinfandel 2012: a Hope Family Wine

I do most of my wine learning by reading online content. I have a some favourite tried-and-true writers but it is nice once in awhile seek out new and fresh perspectives. Recently I stumbled upon the blog of Canadian wine writer Krista Lamb. I enjoy her style of writing, a mix of stories and reviews, a style…

Michael David Petite Petit: Bold Petite Sirah from Lodi

Many big wine review sites like eRobert Parker or Wine Enthusiast Magazine offer their top wine lists. I do glance through these once in awhile but the top wines are often out of my price range and hard to find around here. If you’re willing to do some research however they can be a quick way to find new wines. I’ll…

Casillero del Diablo 2013 Carmenere Reserva

Black currants, plums, rose, grapefruit, cherry. Sounds like a fruit salad but these are also descriptors commonly associated with particular grape varieties. Currants with Cabernet Sauvignon, plums with Merlot, roses with the difficult to pronounce Gewurztraminer, grapefruit with New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, and cherries with Sangiovese (Chianti) or cold climate Pinot Noir. I’ve learned to associate…

Townshend Cellars Red Table Wine: A Non-vintage Blend

Champagne is the famous sparkling wine from its regional namesake in France. Everyone loves to celebrate with Champagne but it is also super food friendly being dry and high in acidity. Why am I talking about Champagne when this post is about a red table wine? Well, Champagne is also the most well known example of…

Sebastiani Vineyards 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County: California Cab

Here is another Cabernet Sauvignon to add to the California Cab series. This one comes from Sonoma, more specifically from the American Viticulture Areas (AVA) of Sonoma Valley, Alexander Valley, and Chalk Hill. Since it is sourced from multiple AVAs the bottle says Sonoma County, the general AVA for the whole region. Sebastiani has a long history…

Herencia Altes Terra Alta Garnatxa Negra: Grenache from Spain

There are thousands of grape varieties in the world and getting to know their names is a big hurdle in learning about wine. We tend towards ones that are familiar, shying away from the odd ones we know nothing about. There are the simple typical ones like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Chardonnay. Then there are…

Chateau Haut-Mayne 2006: Bordeaux Blend from Graves

I have always found Bordeaux intimidated. It could be the typically high price, the complicated classification system, or the cheap and tasteless bottles I’ve had before that deterred me. Whatever the reasons, I have tried very little of it. When I saw this bottle, with a single subregion on the label as opposed to the catch-all “Bordeaux” designation, I couldn’t wait to…

Ruffino 2011 Riserva Ducale Chianti: a Tuscany Classic

Tuscany is a land of beautiful rolling hills and tall cypress tree surrounded villas. It is also home to the grape Sangiovese which is used in the blend Chianti. Gone are the days when Chianti would conjure up romantic images of wide bottomed bottles wrapped in straw baskets in the middle of red and white checkered…

Villa Maria Pinot Noir Private Bin: a Wine From Marlborough

Marlborough is one of the northern regions on the south island of New Zealand. It has hot days and cold nights which produce fruity wines that retain acidity for balance. While best known for zesty Sauvignon Blanc other varieties are taking hold as well. Pinot Noir is just coming into it’s own there with the oldest vines producing the best examples….