Wines released October 29, 2011

These and all my November picks will be selected with the Holidays in mind. Start building your stash now so you can relax and enjoy yourself ““ with a collection of wines that you simply cannot put together on a cold, busy afternoon in mid-December.

Italy is bringing something new to white wine that is not really new but an updated version of how it used to be before the popularity of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. A return to bone dryness and savoury flavours. Wines that flatter the food more than the drinker. Wines for those tuned into the overall experience and not just a pleasant first sip. Mas des Bressades also falls into this category. I’m offering a fun Californian white just in case you think I getting too serious.

A lovely Valpol, a Piedmont blend and a traditional Chianti are my picks in rustic reds. Spain offers a blockbuster, and a charming Pinot, while Chile’s Concha y Toro over delivers with its Syrah. Lastly I’m recommending a Zinfandel that’s delicious beyond words.


Wine Style: NICE “˜N EASY White
ET CETERA 09 Sauvignon Blanc, Sonoma, California
264812 $14.95
Crowd-pleasing white that could be related to Pinot Grigio. Laid back, fun, Californian feeling. Lovely anytime sipper.

Wine Style: FRESH White
ZENATO 10 Pinot Grigio, Veneto, Italy
37648 $13.95
Zesty Pinot Grigio with novel savoury flavours. Characterful, general purpose/house white.

Wine Style: FRESH White
INAMA 09 Soave, Veneto, Italy
949768 $17.95
Very dry with earthy flavours and the feeling of something handcrafted. Not a trace of prettiness ““ the purpose here is to stimulate the appetite and flatter food.

Wine Style: RICH White
MAS des BRESSADES BLANC 10, Costieres de Nimes, France
701094 $14.95
Feels like it could be related to the above Inama. Similar earthy character but feels richer. Whites from the South of France have the same low-keyed quality as most Italian whites. Would be a perfect white partner for the big bird.


Wine Style: RUSTIC Red
TEDESCHI 09 Valpolicella “˜Valverde’, Veneto, Italy
155309 $14.95
Wonderful mid-size Valpolicalla. Bright fruity flavours and a solid, feeling. Down to earth, but also feels special. Perfect for food and friends.

Wine Style: RUSTIC Red
LA QUERCIOLA 08 Langhe Rosso, Piedmont, Italy
225227 $13.95
Classic trattoria red. Lots of vitality and flavours that go beyond fruitiness. Very refreshing, very cheerful and very right for any good-times event/meal. Lightly chill.

Wine Style: RUSTIC Red
CASTELLO di QUERCETO 08 Chianti Classico, Tuscany, Italy
680496 $21.95
Woodsy, traditional-style Chianti. Bone dry, invigorating and well mannered. Good company for drinkers who enjoy a little mystery in their glass. Excellent partner for grilled or braised meats.

Wine Style: RICH Red
CONCHA y TORO 08 Syrah “˜Winemaker’s Lot 54′, Chile
227496 $16.95
Concha y Toro delivers Rhone-style Syrah with a hit of crowdpleasing spicy/sweetness. Sure to please everyone at your next steak dinner. This winery always over delivers.

Wine Style: RICH Red
EL ARTE de VIVIR 09 Ribera del Duero, Spain
137679 $15.95
Solid as a brick wall. But knows how to boogie too. This region does heft really well.

Wine Style: RICH Red
MIGUEL TORRES 09 Pinot Noir “˜Mas Borras’, Penedes, Spain
673483 $29.95
Delicious mid-size Pinot. Earthy, along with delicious spicy/sweet flavours ““ and great drinkability. Worth the splurge if you’re a Pinot fan.

Wine Style: RICH Red
QUIVIRA 08 Zinfandel, Sonoma, California
249250 $26.95
This is drop dead gorgeous. An amazing amount of delicious spicy/fruitiness ““ that feels very natural. Tons of charm and sweet kisses. Happy day feeling. You gotta try this. And buy a case.

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