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.

Riverina Estate 2002 Warburn Premium Reserve Cabernet Merlot (Australia)

13 May 2020



(March 23, 2020) ... I have a by-the-glass decanter for an occasions just like this one ... this 18 year old Australian blend, when I first opened it, was cranky and odd, so I tried the single serve decanter and discovered that if I went down this route I would kill this wine in an instant so instead I let it gracefully age in glass, because it did have potential of going somewhere interesting.

Aromas showed a definite aged wine character with its earthy, fig, prune, forest floor, and an odd bit of burnt caramel ... the palate also showed some signs of life, and a much younger side than the nose: herbal, smoky, earthy, slight prune, delicate pepper with dried blackberry and sun dried tomatoes ... I was at least impressed by the complexity it was showing.  But it was not a long lived wine in the glass - an hour was about all it had to show before collapsing in on itself ... The wine is not dead, it definitely has a pulse, but it's a faint one.


Palacios Remondo 2015 La Montesa (Spain)

12 May 2020

La Montesa


(March 12, 2020) ... I will be honest, Rioja is one of those regions that I have never really been a fan of ... I love Spanish wine and think they offer some of the best values on the market, but Rioja has just never been what I am looking for ("not my bag" as the kids used to say) - I have Rioja in my cellar, so I am not totally against it, but those old styles leave me cold. The good news is there's a new school or winemaker that seems to be coming along and creating buzz not only throughout Spain, but within the Rioja hierarchy as well.

Exhibit A: this Palacios Remondo 2015 La Montesa, sure it carries with it some of the baggage of Rioja's olden days (ie: herbal and dried fruit notes) but it does not define this wine, in fact there is more to enjoy fresh fruit-wise, like cherry, blackberry, black raspberry plus white pepper and cinnamon; along with great acidity - making it a perfect food wine, but also an easy sipper of sorts.  I found this wine developed slowly in the glass, but also very well, as more spice seem to works its way in and onto the finish , which seemed to go from medium to long as it opened. This is a perfect example of what I was talking about, a cross between modern and old-style Rioja ... now this style Rioja I can totally get behind.


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