A monthly look at the wines from Ontario you need in your cellar and on your table; plus all the latest from the world of Michael Pinkus Wine Review

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Ontario Wines: 

Wines You Gotta Get

New & Noteworthy Wines, the Latest Video Reviews, Podcasts and more

April 2017 - Volume 19
Must Watch
Video Wine Reviews:

Featherstone 2014 Canadian Oak Chardonnay (Ontario Wine Review #218)
2014 Chardonnay
Canadian Oak
Cooper's Hawk 2013 Cabernet Franc Reserve (Ontario Wine Review #217)
Cooper's Hawk
2013 Reserve
Cabernet Franc
International Wine Videos
Stonestreet 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon (The Wine Review - Ep. 93)
2013 Cabernet Sauvignon
Baillie-Grohman 2013 Pinot Noir (The Wine Review - Ep. 92)
2013 Pinot Noir
The Side Bar ...
Cellar Tastings and more:
Vintages Release:
April 1, 2017
Newsletter 278:
LCBO Fails Ontario, Again
Taste it Again:
An Ontario Foursome
Taste it Again:
2 Chards Different Results
Taste it Again:
Pillitteri Estates 2007 Cabernet Franc
On the Road:
Australian Wine Roundup
La Crema 2014 Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley (Oregon)
Easton 2012 Zinfandel, Amador County (California)
Recent Podcasts
Episode 38:
Talkin' Italy
Episode 39:
Talkin' Wrong Wine for the Icon
A Few Words Before We Begin
Hello <<First Name>>,
It's getting near Rose season and you'll start to see them on shelves in the LCBO and your local winery soon enough - today I recommend two (one with bubbles) along with a Chardonnay, a Merlot, an unconventional (for Ontario) white blend and a red blend that'll knock your socks off ... and they all answer the question: "What should I drink / buy next?"

Also in this e-blast be sure to check out the latest videos and podcasts - plus links to some reviews of older wines to see how they are standing the test of time.


Michael Pinkus -Grape Guy

The Tasting Bar ...
2015 Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc, Iconoclast

($22.25 - Winery Only)
74% Semillon blends with his partner Sauvignon Blanc (26%), barrel-fermented and aged 10 months resulting in a delicious version of this classic blend (but this time it’s from Ontario). Waxy lemon drops, grapefruit zest, lanolin and mineral all play a part in your enjoyment – there’s even a little vanilla and a silky mid-palate before the nervy-ness of the Sauvignon Blanc takes over on the medium-length finish.
Rating: ****
2015 Arinna

($39.00 - Winery Only)
As much as I was impressed with the 2014 of this wine the ’15 is even better – the formula seems familiar: 12 months French and American oak (French dominated), but the percentages are more in balance with where you would expect them to be from this vintage: 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot and 18% Cabernet Franc – Franc still takes up the rear but this year it’s up a whopping 17%! This one is quite simply gorgeous from the aromas of cassis, mocha and cherry to the smoky-white pepper and grippy tannin structure at the back end, even the dark fruit mid-palate shows finesse. This is one to be proud of. Only 225 cases produced – and even at this price should go quickly. Drink: 2019-2029.
Rating: **** ½+
KEW Vineyards
2010 Rosalie

($29.95 - Winery Only)
Some of you will be thinking to yourself, “wait, I am positive I have tasted the 2011, are they going backwards?” Kinda. This is a stellar bottle of 6-years on lees Rosé bubble (yes 6 years) at a price that is jaw-droppingly affordable … there’s no excuse for not buying this bottle (makes a great gift or open on Mother’s Day). Strawberry and leesy lime notes with raspberry filled biscuits and just enough minerality to bring it all together with the hallmark of a great bubble, acidity to spare … even after 6 years this one is fresh, lively and most of all tasty.
Rating: ****+
2012 Merlot

($45.95 - Winery Only)
Notes of blueberry and cassis kicks things off then in rides vanilla, spice, cherry, plum and baker’s cocoa … the wine is a little dusty on the finish at the moment, but that should mellow with time – and this wine has time on its side: drink over the next 5-7 years.
Rating: ****
Trius / Hillebrand
2015 Chardonnay, Barrel Fermented

($19.95 - Winery Only)
Not sure I’ve had a better version of this Barrel Fermented Chardonnay ever (that’s a braod statement but possibly true); lovely aromas of peach, lime and citrus, which follows onto the palate then layers in vanilla, butterscotch and peach cobbler notes. It feels rich and creamy in the mouth with just enough acidity to keep things honest … but what really makes this wine so special is the long finish.  It’s a luxurious Chardonnay for not a lot of dough, and that makes it even more appealing.
Rating: ****+
Two Sisters
2016 Rosé

($29.00 - Winery Only)
Haven’t seen a rosé table wine from Two Sisters? That’s because this is their first – and like everything else at Two Sisters they took it very seriously.  First they early picked Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc and decided Merlot would do the lion’s share of the work (60%) – then they said, “we’re avoiding sweet and aiming for dry” – and they hit the mark: beautiful raspberry, floral and bubblegum aroma that hint at sweet but surprises the palate with red berries, cranberry and real dryness: juicy mid leads to a dry finish; it shows elegance and sophistication despite those sweet aromatics – it takes a while for the mind to process the dichotomy but it’s worth it.
Rating: ****
Michael Pinkus
Michael Pinkus Wine Review
The Grape Guy
Two Guys Talking Wine
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