From the Cellar

Just because I started a website called doesn't mean it's All-Ontario-All-the-Time. When I kick back at night my mood (and sometimes my curiosity) decides my wine of choice. And the title should read, "Uncorked and Un-Screwed Tonight" ... but that just sounds wrong.

The First Judgement of Kingston

20 Apr 2018

(November 4, 2016) ... I judged at the first Kingston event and took s few bottles with me, I sat with my good friend, and fellow wine scribe, Konrad Ejbich, to taste a few, though probably not all of these wines, as they were tasted over a few days:

Jamie Kennedy ChardonnayJamie Kennedy 2007 Chardonnay (Rosehall Run) - this wine was still creamy and held on to a good amount of acidity, but the flavours seem dull and ultimately unappealing.

Thomas & Vaughan 1999 Meritage ... it's a Cabernet Sauvignon dominant blend that has seemed to have held on: tobacco, dries cranberry, though a touch weedy with some tomato stem nuances - but there's also a sweet cassis note that makes this wine an interesting treasure ... but an ultimately a dud.

Thomas and Vaughan 1999Sanson 2002 Cabernet Franc ... a wine that proved to be very acidic, loaded with layers, but none good enough to keep it interesting: smoky sausage and meaty with toasty character of burnt coffee bean and a bitter note to the finish. As it opened roasted red & green pepper begin to appear and a short finish emerges - in the end we determine it's light with a lean middle, it's okay but far from great.

Southbrook 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon, Lailey Vineyard ... the wine opens with lots of volatile acidity and never really loses it; there are hints of interest, with cassis poking around plus some cranberry and sour raspberry, but in the end its thin, lean and simple. It's had a good life, but now its time to go, there are better old Southbrook wines out there, this is not one.

Lailey 2001 Cab SauvLailey 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon ... same grape from the same vineyard as the above wine, but this time it's a little younger, and made by the same winemaker - freeze dried raspberry and strawberry with green pepper, cedar, roasted green pepper and black pepper spice - this is old school Ontario Franc that still holds your interest in the glass.


A Real Mish-Mash of Wines (California / Australia / Ontario)

20 Apr 2018

(October 22, 2016) ... A real mish-mash-melee array of wines hit the table this evening, here are some brief notes about them:

The Crusher 2011 Pinot Noir, Wilson Vineyard (California) ... smoky notes kick things off with red and black cherry to follow, sweet cranberry and white pepper also show up.

Henry of Pelham 2007 Reserve Pinot Noir (Ontario) ... the focus these days is on Ontario Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, this reserve Henry is dusty and smoky, with cassis and harsh tannins; it's almost a fruit-less wine if not for those Southbrook 1999 Cab Franccassis notes.

Southbrook 1999 Cabernet Franc, Lailey Vineyard (Ontario) ... hot damn, this puppy is performing better than expected: red pepper jelly character on the nose with smoky, sweet strawberry, vanilla-oak, and a long finish filled with great acidity - this one's hanging on.

The Show 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon (California) ... not sure why I hold some wines, curiousity I guess, but this one seems to be kicking around in a good way: dried blackberry with cedary and spice.

Tyrrell ShirazTyrrell 2004 Shiraz (Australia) ... nothing wrong here, with 12 years under its belt it's still a wine I'm happy to have a full glass of: plum, black cherry, coffee, and mocha,

Chateau des Charmes 2012 DroitChateau des Charmed 2012 Gamay Noir 'Droit' (Ontario) ... another wine that's still hanging on with full-fruited up-front flavour that proves to be simply delicious it also has that signature subtle peppery/spice that 'droit' is known for.


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