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Home Wine Ratings June 2016 Wine Ratings

June 2016 Wine Ratings

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90 Malivoire Moira Chardonnay 2012, Beamsville Bench ($39.95)

A full-bodied, oaked style of Chardonnay with a creamy texture. Banana, spice, honey, sweet apple, cream and anise carry long into the sunset, where mineral notes chime in. Lobster in butter is what you want to serve with beauty. (ES)

90 Thirty Bench Small Lot Riesling Triangle Vineyard 2014, Beamsville Bench ($30)

Sweet apple, white peach, mineral, lime cordial, apricots, bergamot and citrus are all in play. There is excellent length and even though there is some residual sugar, the steely acidity gives an impression of dryness. (ES)

89 Thirty Bench Gewurztraminer 2015, Beamsville Bench ($30)

A textbook Gewürztraminer! An explosion of lychee, rose, honey, cardamom, sweet peach and vanilla. It is dry with a broad mouthfeel and a long honey/spiced finale. Pair with Munster or other wash rind cheeses. (ES)

88 Kacaba Riesling Reserve 2015, Niagara ($18)

Citrus, bergamot, crushed rock, white flower and white peach lead into a palate which gives an impression of dryness. Fresh acidity provides lift, and there is great length. Chilled shellfish platter please! (ES)

88 Kacaba Unoaked Chardonnay 2015, Niagara ($15)

Crisp and clean with no oak to take away from the purity of the fruit. Ripe apple, pear, citrus, lilac and minerals. Dry and refreshing with great persistency. (ES)


90 Malivoire Small Lot Gamay 2015, Niagara Escarpment ($19.95)

Malivoire continues to lead the Gamay revolution in Ontario. Pepper, raspberry, strawberry, earth, red flowers and cocoa.  Excellent length and ready to drink or can be cellared for a couple of years. Serve with burgers topped with blue cheese or spaghetti topped with an Italian sausage ragout.

90 Malivoire Stouck Merlot, Lincoln Lakeshore ($40)

A minor miracle for the vintage! Harvested at less than 1 ton per acre, the deep cherry colour with purple highlights leads into a bouquet of dark cherry, plum, oregano, hickory, dill, coconut and cured meats. Full in the mouth with ripe fruit and just a hint of herbaceousness. There is abundant tannin, but I would choose to drink over next five years. (ES)

89 Henry of Pelham Old Vines Baco Noir, Ontario ($19.95)

From the Baco-masters comes this full-bodied rendition made from 30 year-old-vines.  It is chock full of dark cherry, blackberry, cassis, bbq spice and cocoa. Baco’s natural acidity streaks through the concentrated and lengthy palate. Grilled and braised meats will shine with this wine. (ES)


89 Malivoire Vivant Rosé 2015, Beamsville Bench ($21.95)

This Pinot Noir rose was produced via a direct pressing hence the orange/peach colour.  Floral, cherry, earth and spice on the nose.  Elegant and tart with a cherry fruit finish. (ES)

88 Malivoire Ladybug Rosé 2015, Niagara ($15.95)

A blend of primarily Cab Franc with Gamay and Pinot Noir acting as backstop. Twenty-four hours of skin contact has produced a vibrant pink colour. Herbal, violets, cassis, cherry, tobacco, herbal, spice and cocoa are all present. Charcuterie and smoked salmon come to mind.



88 Boutari Moschofilero, Mantinia ($12.95)

Boutari has it done it again, delivering a bang for the buck Moschiofilero for the masses. A perfume of banana, lemon, white peach, honey, melon, jasmine and hints of ginger leads to a light yet lengthy  palate full of refreshing acidity. At 11% alcohol it will go down easy all by itself, or even better, with sushi, (ES)

87 Thalia White 2015, Crete (9.95)

Smokey mineral, herbs, grapefruit, lemon, white peach, green apple and white flowers are all present in the delicate blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Vilana. Refreshing with great length and a structure which makes for a perfect pairing with shellfish or mild cheeses.


88 Kir-Yianni Paranga 2013, Macedonia ($14.75)

This blend of 50% Xinomavro, 25% Syrah and 25% Merlot exudes black cherry, black licorice, plum, rose, roasted herbs, tar and vanilla. It is medium bodied with supple tannins and a lingering aftertaste. Ready to drink with a nice plate of pasta topped with braised sausage or veal in a tomato sauce. (ES)

87 Tsantali Rapsani 2013, Rapsani ($13.40)

From the southern slopes of Mount Olympus comes the blend of equal parts of Xinomavro, Krassato and Stavroto, which six months in oak have produced a nose of black cherry jam, roses, sweet spice, vanilla, plum, tomato paste and black olive. Somewhat grippy on the palate (which bodes well for the red meat factor) there is lifted acidity and persistency. (ES)

87 Boutari Agiorgitiko 2014, Nemea ($12.95)

Huge florality gives way to black cherry, cassis, cocoa, earth and clove qualities. Light with an appealing, easy drinking structure. Drink now and it won’t break the bank. (ES)



90 Réva Sauvignon Langhe 2015, Piedmont ($26.95)

A blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Sauvignon Gris, which exudes grapefruit, passion fruit, nectarine, white peach, white flowers and herbs. Bright on the palate with fine length and a mineral-tinged finale. (ES)


93 Réva Barolo Ravera 2012, Piedmont ($89.95)

The discovery of this winery at this year’s Nebbiolo Prima was one of my highlights!  Powerful, the cherry, plum, vanilla, spice, cocoa, tar, dried earth carry long into the sunset. With all the tannins, there is a twenty-year life ahead. (ES)

92 Monti Barolo Monforte d’Alba 2012, Piedmont ($50)

Made in an ultra-modern style where new oak envelopes the sweet cherry, tar, cola, anise, humus, and chestnut.  Full bodied, super-ripe, with a  long finish, lots of flavour and enough stuffing to age two decades. Purists might scoff at this wine, but there is no denying the quality. (ES)

92 Monti Barolo Riserva Bussia 2010, Piedmont ($65)

Full bodied, this modern Barolo sees a healthy dash of new oak, coming out on the other side with a  perfume of sweet cherry, vanilla, flowers, earth, tar and spice. Long on the finish with lots of polished tannins which bodes well for a great life ahead. (ES)

92 Rivetto dal 1902 Barolo Riserva Leon 2010 Piedmont ($90)

Tobacco, balsamic, potpourri, dark cherry, blackberry, anise, and minerals are layered on a firm yet lovely palate. Superb aftertaste and great longevity  – 25 years. (ES)

92 Cascina del Monastero Barolo Riserva Riund Bricco Rocca 2010, Piedmont ($95)

Opens up with a volley of cherry, spice, earth, dried rose and licorice. The palate delivers sweet fruit with a long vanilla and berry tinged finale.  Deep, balanced and refined. Start to drink after 2020 as it is still youthful. (ES)

91 Réva Barolo 2012, Piedmont ($59.95)

This superb Barolo is fragrant, revealing a bouquet of rose, cherry, cocoa, plum, fried leaves, vanilla and clove. Great length, with lots of grippy tannins which will allow the wine to evolve over the next 15 plus years. (ES)

91 Mauro Veglio Barolo Castelletto 2012, Piedmont ($65)

A well balanced Barolo with high notes of plum, vanilla, cherry, rose and dried earth. Rich and concentrated with excellent length. (ES)

91 Pira Luigi Barolo Margheria 2012, Piedmont ($80)

From the commune of Serrlunga d’Alba comes this full-bodied Nebbiolo with an intense nose of sweet cherry, flowers, plum, raspberry, vanilla and spice. Concentrated, there is great length and structure which will allow a long life. (ES)

90 Paolo Manzone Barolo Meriame 2012, Piedmont ($65)

This house continues to produce attractive wines at attractive prices. Cherry, plum, earth, spice and earth are all built on concentrated fame. Long aftertaste and lots of life ahead. (ES)

90 Renato Ratti Barolo Conca 2012, Piedmont ( $75)

A textbook Barolo full of cherry, prune, flowers, earth, vanilla and spice. Splendid length and well suited with braised lamb shanks. (ES)

90 Brovia Barolo Rocche di Castiglione 2012 ($100)

Plum, cherry, earth, spice, vanilla, game, floral and tar. Nice weight and length. Drink this wine over the next decade. (ES)


90 Goru El Blanco Moscatel-Chardonnay 2015, Jumilla ($13.95)

From Jumilla, Spain’s hotbed of value, comes this singular blend of Muscat and Chardonnay. Dry, there is great texture and ripe fruit which inundates the senses. Orange blossom, banana, pineapple, honey, red and delicious apple and spice are all in play. It is long lasting with just the right pinch of acidity. Fish tacos or Szechuan-inspired dishes are made for this wine. (ES)


88 Chateau St Jean Chardonnay 2014, Sonoma County ($18.95)

A wooded Chardonnay, which is soft and creamy with smoke, honey, fruit salad, pineapple, yellow apple, smoke and spice. There is a solid backbone of acidity which alleviates any heaviness on the lengthy finale. (ES)


Wine Facts

Dom Perignon (1638-1715), the Benedictine Abbey (at Hautvillers) cellar master who is generally credited with “inventing” the Champagne making process, was blind.