May 2008 Wine Ratings

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Germany

89 Darting Ungsteiner Herrenberg Riesling Spätlese 2006, Pfalz ($19.95)
I have tried this wine on two separate occasions. The first time was at the winery itself, and more recently at an LCBO tasting. The same score was given both times. Medium to full body, with a delightful nose of minerals, citrus and peach, as well as a mouthful of peach jam, honey, flowers and some residual sugar.  Excellent value! (ES)

 

 

87 Darting Dürkheimer Nonnengarten Gewürztraminer Kabinett 2005, Pfalz ($16.95)
Medium yellow with an intense spicy, lychee, orange blossom and peach profile. Medium bodied with 60 grams per liter of residual sugar. Very good length. Try with General Tao chicken. (ES)

 

Canada

 

 

93 Tawse Cabernet Sauvignon Icewine 2007, Niagara ($35/200ml)
This is the best Cabernet Sauvignon Icewine I have ever tasted- period!  It is superbly concentrated with loads of guava jam layered upon currants and cocoa. With a 40 second finish and 250 grams of sugar, this super sweet stickie coats the entire palate, but just before it becomes too heavy, the acid kicks in, giving it lift. Chocolate mousse is the way to go. (ES)

 

92 Strewn Riesling Icewine 2006, Niagara ($58)
A rock’em sock’em Icewine that is bursting at the seams with honey drenched stone fruit, flowers and spice. Full bodied, super concentrated and with superb length. Try it with a cheesecake topped with an apricot glaze. (ES)

 

90 Chateau des Charmes Gewurztraminer St. David’s Bench 2006, St. David’s Bench ($19.95)
Always in the top echelon of Ontario Gewurzs! Alsatian in style and hugely aromatic with lychee nut, rose water, honey, pineapple and grapefruit/citrus. It is full bodied and semi sweet with a honey/grapefruit tinged finish. Perfectly suited for pad thai or moderately spiced curries. (ES)

 

90 Tawse Carly’s Block Estate Risling 2007, Twenty Mile Bench ($30)
Another great Carly’s Block from the gang at Tawse. Pale yellow with a very youthful mineral, lemon rind, lime zest and anise nose. It is slightly off dry, with concentrated minerals, lime zest and bergamot on the lengthy finish. As a side note, I had the 02 version right beside this wine and it was aging beautifully- a testament to the age worthiness of this wine! Drink over the next 8 to 10 years. (ES)

 

89 Flat Rock The Rusty Shed Chardonnay 2005, Niagara ($24.95)
A worth successor to the great 2004! This vintage showcases melon, licorice, spice, honey and peach on the nose while the mouth adds vanilla and citrus. Excellent length. Try with an oven roasted Cornish game hen with roasted root vegetables accented with thyme honey.(ES)

 

89 Tawe Robyn’s Block Estate Chardonay 2005, Twenty Mile Bench ($48)
All the intense hazelnut, vanilla, peach, pear puree and pineapple make you think this will be a monster in the mouth. Not so. Yes it is concentrated, but it is rather stylish, with honey, smoke, pineapple and green apple flavours with a creamy texture and fresh acid. Drink over the next 4 years. (ES)

89 Tawse Wismer Vineyard Riesling, Niagara ($25)
More restrained than the Carly’s Block, this terroir driven Riesling which is all about mineral and lime that combines with anise and bergamot.  Dry with good depth on the palate and crisp finish. Now to 2015. (ES)

 

88 Flat Rock Cellars Gravity Pinot Noir 2005, Niagara ($29.95)
Pale cherry colour with a pink rim. Plum, cherry and spice aromas combine with flavours of cassis on the palate. Delicate, yet lengthy with fresh acid and soft tannins. Drink now. (ES)

 

88 Tawse Sketches of Niagara Riesling 2007, Niagara ($18)
Sketches is Tawse’s new value priced Riesling. It is an aromatic wine with lots of peach, honey, orange blossom and minerals. The palate offers much of the same with a lime lasting finale. Even though there is 20 grams of sugar, it comes across as dry because of the lively acidity. Now to 2014. (ES)

 

87 Konzelmann Special Select Late Harvest Vidal 2006, Niagara ($19.95)
Medium golden colour with a nose of acacia flower, peach, honey and lemon. Mid weight with spice, honey and lemon on the palate as well as bitter almond finish. Very good length. (ES)

 

87 Konzelmann Old Cellar Door Cuvee Brut, Niagara ($30)
OCD is a traditional method sparkling which combines Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Riesling. It reveals strawberry, green apple, citrus and earthy aromas as well as a biscuity edge in the mouth with just an undercurrent of caramel starting to show through. Try with mussels in a white wine sauce.(ES)

 

87  Tawse Chardonnay Musque 2007,Niagara
Pale water colour with moderate aromas of peach, honey and white flowers. There is a touch of residual sugar with good freshness and very good length. (ES)

 

87 Inniskillin Montague Vineyard Chardonnay 2006, Niagara ($18.30)
Starts out with an oaky profile of spice and vanilla and is buttressed by banana cream and tropical fruit tones. Medium to full body with crisp acid and a tropical fruit finish. (ES)

 

86 Legends Estate Unoaked Chardonnay, Niagara ($11.95)
A good value in homegrown product that delivers melon, green apple, peach and minerals. Light to medium body with a somewhat oily texture and clean finish. (ES)

 

86 Konzelmann White Moose, Niagara ($15)
White Moose is a new release from Konzelmann and one that is made from Riesling. It is slightly off dry with a lime, white peach and mineral profile. (ES)

 

85 Kacaba Vineyards Horizon Ridge Sur Lie Chardonnay 2006, Niagara ($15.95)
This Chardonnay spent 4 months on the lees, giving it a distinctive yeasty note that combines with peach, honey and pear. Light bodied, the palate is creamy with a mineral/pear finish. (ES)

 

 

California

 

88 Gallo of Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, Sonoma County ($16.95)
This is a superb value from the Sunshine State! This medium bodied Cab possesses a black/purple colour and equally dark nose of blackberries, plums and cassis which is underpinned by mocha, licorice and herbs. Very good length and ready to drink with bison steak in a blackberry sauce. Drink over the next 4 to 6 years. (ES)