Monday, January 4th: Wrote my 680 NEWS wine reviews and worked on the novel. For dinner with pasta, Bolla Creso Verona Rosso 2011 (Corvina with 35% Cabernet Sauvignon; deep ruby colour; cherry nose with a spicy note; medium-bodied, dry, savoury cherry flavour tinged with licorice; well-balanced and seamless and finishing on an earthy note (90)).
Tuesday, January 5th: Went to the bank to pay off a huge Christmas Visa bill. Then shopped for the wines for my Blind Tasting Award on Thursday at the Fine Wine Reserve. For dinner, Thai chicken stir-fry with a bottle of Maverick Estate Syrah 2013 from the southern Okanagan (dense purple-ruby colour; smoky, herby, blackberry and blueberry nose; smoky blackberry and blueberry flavour with tones of sage and bitter chocolate backed by lively acidity (89+)).
Wednesday, January 6th: My cold is still lingering, dammit. Recoded my 680 NEWS wine reviews and then drove up to my friend Irv Wolkoff’s to have lunch at the Centre Street deli. Best smoked meat in town, hand sliced.
Thursday, January 7th: Prepared for the blind tasting competition this evening. There are 10 contestants from the Ontario wine importers – but only eight showed up at the Fine Wine Reserve. Participants had to taste six wines and determine blind the grape variety, the region, the vintage, and bonus marks for the producer. The wines in order of serving were:
- Miguel Torres Las Mulas Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (Chile)
- Kacaba Jennifer’s Pinot Gris 2014 (Ontario)
- Cono Sur Bicileta Pinot Noir 2014 (Chile)
- Marchesi Frescobaldi Castiglioni Chianti 2014 (Tuscany)
- Magnotta Shiraz Limited Edition 2013 (Ontario)
- Limnos Wines Muscat de Limnos 2014 (Greece)
When the dust settled there was a tie in the scores between Joanna Steele of Lifford and Marc Laverdière of Roust. So, there will have to be a taste-off to determine the winner.
Friday, January 8th: A Vintages tasting this morning. Stopped in at New York Fries on the way home for a take-out order of fries. Best thing after a big tasting. Ate them as I walked home. (My mother told me never to eat in the street. Sorry Mom.) For dinner, pork tenderloin pot au feu with Jean Leon Merlot Petit Verdot 2014 (deep ruby colour; cedar, blackcurrant nose; medium-bodied, dry, spicy with blackcurrant and cranberry flavours with lively acidity (88)).