LCBO Vintages June 20, 2009

THE LOW DOWN: There’s lots of super-rich, crowd-pleasing reds in the Malbec feature – go get em! My single  recommendation is more in the traditional style. As is the wonderful Fontodi Chianti Classico. Something different in a picnic red is the Gamay/Pinot blend from Switzerland. And fans of the juicy Porcupine Ridge will be happy to see a return visit of this South African treat.

The Viognier from Peninsula Ridge and a white from Gascony are must-try charmers for summer drinking. An Aussie and a French dry Rosé completes my  picks. You can never have enough good Rosé on hand!

REDS
andeanrich red
ANDEAN VINEYARDS 07 Malbec, Mendoza, Argentina 125963 $15.95
Starts out rich and yummy but there’s a solidness too – even a refreshing bite. The manly Argentina experience, with old-style French manners. Wonderful stuff. And organic too.

fontodirustic red
FONTODI 06 Chianti Classico. Italy 933317 $28.95
Fontodi is one of the few Chianti producers who hasn’t sold out to the current fashion for rich ‘n smooth. The wine is firm and gutsy with wonderful earthy flavours. Expensive but worth every penny if you love Tuscany. Wine for grilled or roasted meats.

morgeslively red
CAVE de la CÔTE 07 MORGES, Côtes Vaudoise, Switzerland 123414 $18.95
A frisky, light, refreshing red produced from Gamay, Pinot and some local oddities. Summer picnic wine – you’ll be the only on who brought Swiss.

rich red
porcupineBOEKENHOUTSKLOOF WINERY ‘Porcupine Ridge’ 08 Syrah, South Africa  595280 $15.00
Vibrant, juicy-sweet wine with enormous BBQ appeal. It’s smooth, it’s easy to like and the slight smokiness will cuddle up to food. Terribly easy to guzzle, but watch out for the high alcohol.
WHITES
penridgevionierNice and easy
PENINSULA RIDGE 07 Viognier, VQA Niagara 662601 $14.95
Viognier is the new hot white – taste and see why. Delicious honeyed-flavours and a nice-guy personality. Somewhere between Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio. Yummy for sure. Charred foods are a good contrast with the sweetish style of the wine.

pellehautNice and easy
DOMAINE de PELLEHAUT 08 Blanc, Côtes de Gascogne, France 126136 $14.95
Low-alcohol, light bodied white with an amazing array of smells and flavours – which might have something to do with the half dozen grape varieties used. Crisp and refreshing but also quite pretty. A Sunday brunch showstopper.
ROSÉ
lehmannroseFresh Rosé
PETER LEHMANN 08 Rosé, Barossa, Australia 34298 $15.95
Fresh, frank, mid-range Rosé. Drier than most out of Australia. And you get to enjoy bright cheerful art on the label. Perfect patio lunch stuff.

plasirRch Rosé
MAS AMIEL 08 Rosé ‘Le Plaisir’, Côtes du Roussillon, France 117051 $18.95
The rich, south of France style. Very seductive. Bring on the seafood! A bit pricy but the stylish packages softens the blow. And you gotta love a wine called Le Plaisir.

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