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Home Wine Ratings November 2016 Wine Ratings

November 2016 Wine Ratings

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Canada

White

90 Two Sisters Vineyards Riesling 2014, Twenty Mile Bench ($35)

From the prized Foxcroft Vineyard comes the superb Riesling which balances acidity and sweetness to perfection, giving the impression of a dry wine. Pale water colour and textbook ‘Bench’ aromas of mineral, lime, white flower, white peach and hints of honey. Long, brisk finale. Drink or age, your choice. (ES)

90 Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine Carte Blanche Blanc de Blanc 2011, Short Hills Bench ($44.95)

Made in the traditional method, from 100% Chardonnay grapes, and aged for five years on its yeast cells.  Lots of bread/toast, lemon, green apple and nuts here. Elegant and refined with fine bubbles and creamy texture. Pair with lobster and drawn butter or oysters on the half shell.

88 Coyote’s Run Red Paw Chardonnay 2015, Four Mile Creek ($24.95)

Still tight, the oak is the first that hits the senses in the form of vanilla, butterscotch and spice. The banana fruit, apple, citrus and white peach join in afterward. Great length and ideal with salmon filet topped with a mustard sauce. (ES)

Red

90 Two Sisters Vineyards Eleventh Post 2012, Niagara River ($39)

This blend of 50% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Franc and 25% Cabernet Sauvignon is an impressive and seamless red which exudes dark cherry, cassis, raspberry, plum, chocolate, herbs and hints of graphite. Full bodied, ripe and long lasting, it is ready to drink now but can easily handle another 6 years of cellaring. (ES)

90 Two Sisters Vineyards Merlot 2012, Niagara River ($48)

This is what a great Merlot should be: delicious, ripe and mouth coating. Plum, chocolate, cherry, red/purple flowers, spice, smoke and mint combine to provide a gratifying experience. Excellent length. Drink until 2020. (ES)

90 Two Sisters Vineyards Cabernet Franc 2013, Niagara River ($48)

Considering the challenging nature of the vintage, this wine is somewhat of a minor miracle. It clocks in at a natural 14.2% alcohol and is classic Cab Franc with vanilla, raspberry, cassis, red pepper, cocoa and smokey tobacco attributes. Low yields provide a sweet/fruity palate with fine tannins. Drink until 2023. (ES)

90 Coyote’s Run Rare Vintage Syrah 2014, Four Mile Creek ($34.95)

Of all the ’14 Rare Vintage Reds, this is my favorite. Ripe, the style leans more to the Rhone model with a bouquet of cassis, violets, black pepper, oregano and hickory. Excellent density and aftertaste with enough structure to take it until 2022.

89 Coyote’s Run Rare Vintage Cabernet Franc 2014, Four Mile Creek ($34.95)

Fermented and aged in new French and American barrels, this rendition of this wine lets loose with aromas of blackberry, raspberry, spice, violets, cocoa, black olive and hickory. The palate adds cassis, smoke and tobacco. Stylish, there is a medium body, fine tannins and proper acidity. Drink over the next 5 to 6 years. (ES)

89 Two Sisters Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, Niagara River ($62)

Of all the Two Sisters’ reds, this is the one with the most grip. Plum, blackberry, crème de cassis, violets, cedar and cocoa powder are all in play. Pair this baby with Osso Bucco or a NY strip with a rosemary demi-glace and let the magic happen. (ES)

89 Coyote’s Run Rare Vintage Meritage 2014, Four Mile Creek ($34.95)

Merlot is the dominant grape with both Cabs acting as a backstop. Mid-weight with black cherry, blackcurrant, raspberry, vanilla, smokey tobacco and pencil shavings. Tannins are present but unobtrusive, making for an excellent pairing with a rack of lamb. (ES)

89 Tawse David’s Block Merlot, Twenty Mile Bench ($49.95)

Dark cherry, plum, raspberry, vanilla, tobacco, cocoa and herbs are all in play in the med to full bodied red. Tannins are fine grained, and acidity is a touch on the higher end, so pair with some duck breast with a cherry sauce for an ethereal experience. (ES)

88 Tawse Grower’s Blend Cabernet Franc 2013, Niagara ($27.95)

A mid-weight and easy drink Franc with cassis, raspberry, violets, tobacco, cocoa and spice flavours. Ready to drink with a smoked pork loin topped with an herb demi-glace. (ES)

88 Two Sisters Vineyards Estate Red 2012, Niagara River ($23.50)

This red is only sold in restaurants. It is mid-weight and delivers lots of tobacco, cassis, plum, raspberry, herbs, cocoa and vanilla. Tannins are fine, and there is great length. Drink now. (ES)

88 Coyote’s Run Black Paw Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, Four Mile Creek

My favorite Cab Sauv from this winery in the 2014 vintage. Mint, beef stock, blackcurrant, herbs, spice, vanilla are founded on some grippy tannins. Hold for a year and then drink until 2022. (ES)

Chile

White

89 Conchya y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Chardonnay 2014, Limari ($19.95)

The cool climate and combination of clay/limestone soils of Limari give this wine a decidedly elegant feel. Medium yellow with aromas of butterscotch, toast, vanilla, honey, pineapple, yellow apple and bosc pear. Medium body and vibrant acidity provide lift and symmetry. Lobster ravioli in a cream sauce would be divine with this wine. (ES)

Red

93 Concha y Toro Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon, Maipo Valley ($75)

Full bodied, this is a powerful and polished red with new oak influence of toast, cocoa and spice which melds with blackberry, plum, violets, mint, graphite and scorched earth. Concentrated, there is a thick texture and enough backbone to age 15 years. (ES)

91 Concha y Toro Marques de Casa Concha Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Puente Alto ($21.95)

A solid Cabernet Sauvignon which dishes up cassis, plum, violets, mint, earth, graphite, spice and cocoa. Medium plus body with depth that carries long and finishes with fine tannins which will allow seven years of aging. (ES)

90 Concha y Toro Casillero del Diablo Reserve Privada Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Maipo ($17.95)

A bargain Cabernet Sauvignon! It hits the palate right away with dark fruit flavours of plum, cherry and blueberry. This is followed by mint, cocoa, spice and purple flowers. Texturally, it is round with unobtrusive tannins. Excellent length and ready to be drunk over the next 5 years. (ES)

90 Carmen Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, Maipo Valley ($16.95)

This is your quintessential steak wine. Medium plus body, there is cassis, smoke, mint, vanilla, violets, herbs and mint. Ripe and flavorful, it has the ability to cellar for a couple years, if so desired. (ES)

90 Nativa Organic Community Blend 2012, Maule Valley ($16.95)

This organic wine is a blend of five grapes, with Carmenere and Cabernet Sauvignon acting as the lead. Ripe and easy drinking, you will find Rubina juice, cocoa, violets, bay leaf, vanilla and spice. Fullish, there is a long aftertaste. (ES)

88 Carmen Premier 1865 Carménère 2015, Colchagua Valley ($12.45)

This is an incredible value Carménère, so make sure to pick up a few bottles! Cassis, plum, vanilla, cocoa and mint are all in play. Lengthy with a fruit-driven personality and suave tannins. Perfect with red sauce dishes! (ES)

France

White

87 Côté Mas Blanc Méditerranée, IGP ($11.95)

A great price for this Mediterranean blend of primarily Grenache Blanc and Vermentino with hints of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Medium body, there is green apple, peach, lemon, honey and white flowers in play. There is moderate acidity and fine length.

Red

92 Château Mont-Redon 2012, Châteauneuf-du-Pape ($45.95)

From one of CNP’s top producers comes this four square red which exudes dark cherry, plum, cured meats, pepper and garrigue. Excellent depth and a long aftertaste with non-obtrusive tannins. Drink until 2022. (ES)

Italy

90 Sartori Corte Brà Amarone Della Valpolicella 2009, Veneto ($49.95)

A full-bodied Amarone with a sweet fruit personality of prune, cherry and fig, which then adds cocoa, spice and herbs on the backend. Rich, concentrated and succulent. It is ready to drink but still has some stride left. (ES)

New Zealand

88 The Ned Sauvignon Blanc 2015, Marlborough ($16.60)

Classic Kiwi-style SB with passion fruit, gooseberry, pink grapefruit, nectarine, tomato vine, lime zest and minerals. Vivid acidity carries the pure finale. Drink now (ES)

 

Wine Facts

Although “château” means castle, it may also be a mansion or a little house next to a vineyard that meets the requirements for winemaking with storage facilities on its property.