From the Cellar

Just because I started a website called OntarioWineReview.com 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.

Sandhill 2014 Gamay Noir (British Columbia)

11 Feb 2021

Sandhill Gamay 1

 

(August 21, 2020) ... I was inspired to try this wine tonight because I saw a picture of Howard Soon, who used to be the winemaker at Sandhill and was at the time of this wine being made. As I started sipping my second glass I am feeling a little light-headed, so I turn the bottle around, at 14.5% alcohol this is quite a hot Gamay, but well-balanced as I did not detect the heat until my head started to feel funny. Lots of earthy notes and black cherry with white pepper and smoke. Opens up nicely and the tannins are quite prevalent the more it warms up. It's still quite lovely but look out for that alcohol - it's a game changer.

 

d'Arenberg 2002 The Dead Arm Shiraz (Australia)

29 Jan 2021

Dead Arm 2002

 

(August 14, 2020) ... Not sure what possesses me to show off Australian wines to Australian people, considering when they were over there they could probably get these wines for the same price, if not cheaper - and probably drank them as well; but sometimes it's fun to see if they can pick out their older wines, especially when they are winemakers who grew up and learned the ropes Down Under.

Tonight I had one such candidate over for a socially distanced fire and wine tasting - after which we raided the cellar and found this 18-year-old Dead Arm Shiraz: smoky dark fruit that showed off hints of plum, spice, and cedar on the nose. The plum notes continued on the palate becoming more dominant the longer it sat in glass. The acidity seems to keep everything in check because it lacks that jamminess you expect to find in Aussie Shiraz, but it definitely has retained that peppery note, this time it is layered with white pepper and red peppercorns.

 

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