October, 2009 browsing by month


Baron de Ley 7 Vinas 2001

Friday, October 30th, 2009

Vintage: 2001
Type: Blend of 7 grape varieties
Country: Rioja, Spain

Wow x 10! This wine was for me the highlight of the Tesco Wine Fair 2009. As a fan of their Finca (2004), I knew this blended wine would put a smile on my face.

The seven grapes are blended just right to produce a wine that is worthy to age in oak barrels for three years before being tenderly laid down for a year in bottles. These seven grapes that are perfectly married are Tempranillo (of course!), Graciano, Garnacha, Mazuelo, Viura, Malvasia, and White Granache.

The tannins are rich and the concentration of the fruity flavours is just exquisite. Yummy, yummy! I predict a purchase of a case in my future. At almost £16 per bottle in store, you might think this is over-priced for a Rioja, but believe me, every drop is worth it. Not a red wine for beginners or girly white wine drinkers because they simply wouldn’t know how to appreciate its complex formula.

More info here.

Champage Tarlant – Brut Zéro

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009

Vintage: Non-Vintage
Type: Champagne
Country: France – Epernay

Champagne Tarlant has a claim to fame for being a zero dosage champagne. This means that when the second fermentation occurs, they do not need to add any sugar to the bottle (the dosage). As far as I’m aware, this is unique for champagne.

Of course the quality of the champagne is very good. There seemed to be almost too many bubbles which were nice and small. The taste was great, though this is not my favourite Brut. Recommended.

Pink Elephant Rose

Sunday, October 25th, 2009

Vintage: 2008
Type: Blend of 4 grape varieties
Country: Portugal

I discovered this brand at the Tesco Wine Fair 2008 and tried this modern blush for the first time. I decided to re-visit it today at the Fair, just because I have fond memories of Portugal.

This is one of the few wines that tickled my palate so much that my mouth watered immediately. Although attempting to be a feminine wine that should accompany heavy Indian curries, I really believe that this blush could be enjoyed on its own, with maybe a small dish of rice crackers or wasabi peas to balance out the wine’s tangy notes.

The four grape varieties that are used to make this easy-to-drink wine are Alfrocheiro, Castalao, Touriga Nacional, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Because cases are so cheap at the moment, I imagine this will be the first rose wine that will grace our ever-growing rack.

More info here.

Summerhill – Cipes

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

Vintage: Non-Vintage
Type: Sparkling Wine
Country: Canada – Okanagan Valley

This sparkling wine will always occupy a special place in my heart because this was the bottle that my mother-in-law to-be, my mother and I toasted my wedding day too. My hair was in curlers and my make-up was half-way done, but the wine made me feel fabulous on the inside.

Never feel guilty for drinking bubbly on your wedding day – it creates special moments full of joy.

Now, onto the actual review: this wine was created by New York developer, Stephen Cipes, and it has been served to American and Russian presidents during visits to Canada. With that said, you know this is a serious bubbly that adds elegance to any event. The colour is lightly golden, the bubbles are frothy yet somehow creamy. It is a surprisingly complex bubbly, which helps the drinker to appreciate its festive nature. Highly recommended as an alternative to Champagne.

Château Latour 1994 1er Cru

Saturday, October 17th, 2009

Vintage: 1994
Type: Bordeaux
Country: France

We had a rare chance to taste this delicous wine over a dinner for Eleanor’s Birthday. The wine is rich and complex with a great bouquet and mossy Bordeaux finish, as to be expected from such a wine as the Latour. Great if you can find it for a reasonable price, which we did, but personally I prefer the Lafite-Rothschild.

Château Lafite-Rothschild 1993 1er Cru

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

Vintage: 1993
Type: Bordeaux
Country: France – Bordeaux

We had this wine with a meal at a club restaurant for our 1 month anniversary.


The wine was incredibly balanced with great black cherry flavour and earthy tones. Quite mature and smooth, the edges of the wine were almost clear.

Now I know why this wine is considered one of the best around. Highly recommended, if you can find it. We were lucky as it was part of the club’s cellar and they didn’t overcharge for it.

Champagne Colin – Brut Rose

Monday, October 12th, 2009

Vintage: Non-Vintage
Type: Champagne
Country: France

This Champagne house is the favourite of our friend, Colin. No surprise that it will be served at his wedding later this month!

Novelty aside: the bubbles are fine; there are obvious fruity notes, such as cherry and black currant; and the after taste is sharp and acidic. It is still delicious and goes down well when accompanied by Fossier’s rose-flavoured biscuits.


Saturday, October 10th, 2009

Vintage: 2007
Type: Riesling
Country: Germany

This was a wine that my husband (then boyfriend!) picked up at the Spirit of Christmas fair from the Gerhardt Wines stand. Although not a white wine drinker, I was able to convince my husband to buy two bottles of this delicious, mouth-watering Riesling. I recall it tasting slightly fruity and appearing almost colourless, but it I imagined it would taste perfect with Thai stir fries or green curries. I was correct! We still have the other bottle left, which will be opended on a warm spring evening, 2010.

Casillero del Diablo – Malbec

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

Vintage: 2008
Type: Malbec
Country: Chile

Malbec is a grape that I only approach when I’m feeling particularly gutsy or confident, so maybe the timing was just a bit off today. This Malbec offers up an amazing bouquet after swirling it around just a tiny touch. It tastes of various berries, is strongly oaked and offers up a vanilla-like finish. This wine should always be paired with food, as it would be too bold on its own. I wondered why this wine is so bold – it is probably because of the lack of rain and low altitude at which the grapes are grown in Chile. I reckon this will pair well with a rare and lightly seasoned steak.

Mercier – Brut Rose

Monday, October 5th, 2009

Vintage: Non-Vintage
Type: Champagne
Country: France – Epernay

This rose champagne is a real treat. My husband (then fiance!) picked up a trio of Mercier Champagnes after our tasting at the House in Epernay. Some people think that rose wines suffer from identity crises but not this one. This one is bright and it dances to announce to your taste buds that it is a sparkling Champagne. Alas, this is not a vintage and it is made from a blend of grapes from two different years. It is still a beautiful wine to use for a toast at a special occasion at home.