A Wine Lover’s Diary, part 694: County in the City

These are the wines I tasted this week (not counting the 56 sampled at the Vintages release tasting on Friday and 20 at the Prince Edward County tasting in Toronto on Thursday).

  • William Hill Chardonnay 2016 (California North Coast – $19.95): straw colour; minerally, oaky, apple nose; medium-bodied, sweetish, tropical fruit and pear flavours with good acidity and a creamy mouth feel. (88)
  • Château des Charmes Pinot Noir 2016 (Niagara – $16.95): deep ruby in colour; high-toned, spicy, earthy, beetroot and sour cherry flavours; medium-bodied, dry and savoury, red plum and cherry flavours. (88)

Thursday at Prince Edward County tasting (Berkley Church, Queen Street East, Toronto): Best wines tasted:

  • Closson Chase Pinot Gris 2017 ($22.75): pale straw colour; minerally, lemony, white peach nose; medium-bodied, dry, fresh, peachy-lemony flavour with good length. (89)
  • Closson Chase The Brock Chardonnay 2016: straw colour; spicy apple nose with oak notes and developing barnyard aromas; medium to full-bodied, dry, apple flavour; well-balanced with nicely integrated oak. (89.5)
  • Trail Estate Chardonnay 2015 ($35): light straw in colour; resiny, toasty, reductive nose; very Burgundian in style, richly extracted apple flavour with spicy, toasty oak. (90)
  • Norman Hardie Calcaire 2016 (Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Gris – $23.95): pale straw in colour; grapefruit nose with a light floral note, developing petrol aromas; light to medium-bodied, crispy dry, lemony grapefruit and elderberry flavours. (89)
  • Norman Hardie Unfiltered Chardonnay 2016: medium straw colour; minerally, apple and citrus nose; Chablisesque style, nicely balanced flavours of apple and tangerine with judicious use of oak. (90)
  • Keint-He Portage Pinot Noir 2014: light and delicate, raspberry flavour; lacy on the palate with a firm finish and lively acidity. (89)
  • Lacey Innovation Gewurztraminer 2016 ($22): really good varietal character here – just off-dry lychee and rose petal aromas and flavours. (89)

Thursday evening at Michael Vaughan’s:

  • Margan Semillon 2017 (Hunter Valley – $19.95): bright, light golden colour; lanolin and peach nose; medium-bodied, dry, elegant, fresh, floral, peach flavour with lively acidity, beautifully balanced with a lemon blossom note on the finish. (90)

The owner of Bodega Martín Berdugo in Ribera del Duero and the wife of the winemakers arrived with their importing agent, Amethyst Wine.

  • Martín Berdugo Verdejo 2016 (Rueda – $15.95): bright yellow straw in colour; floral nose of apricot and almond with a mineral note; medium-bodied, dry, floral peach and apricot flavours with fresh citrus acidity and great length. (90)
  • Martín Berdugo Rosado 2016 (100% Tempranillo – $15.95): pink in colour with an orange tint; minerally, strawberry nose; medium-bodied, dry, fresh strawberry flavour with just a hint of residual sweetness. Alcohol is a bit elevated. (88.5)
  • Martín Berdugo Joven 2016 (14.5% alcohol – $15.95): deep ruby colour; lightly cedary nose of blackberries with an oak note; medium to full-bodied, dry, savoury-herbal flavours of blackberries and blackcurrants. Nicely balanced with a firm structure. (88.5)
  • Martín Berdugo Barrica 2016 (5 months in American oak – $17.45 to $19.95): deep ruby, cedary-sandalwood nose of spice and blackberry with a light flora note; medium to full-bodied, firmly structured, fruity blackberry flavour with gripping tannins on the finish. (89)
  • Martín Berdugo Crianza 2013 (90% American, 10% French – new oak): deep ruby colour; cedary, pencil lead, blackberry and vanilla oak bouquet; medium to full-bodied, dry, savoury, tight and firm with grainy tannins on the finish. Needs 4–5 years. (89–91)
  • Martín Berdugo Reserva 2010 (14.5% alcohol – $42): deep ruby colour; high-toned, a touch bretty nose of blackberries; medium to full-bodied, dry, bitter chocolate and prune flavours. (14 months in new oak, American and French.) (88)
  • Martín Berdugo MB 2011 (14.5% alcohol – $54): deep ruby colour; cedary, herbal, blackberry bouquet with a floral top note; medium to full-bodied, dry, spicy-savoury black berry flavour with lively acidity. (91)

Friday (with dinner – roast duck):

  • Dievole Novocento Chianti Classico 2014 (Tuscany – 95% Sangiovese, 3% Canaiolo and 2% Colorino – $37.95): deep ruby in colour; cedary, pencil lead nose of black cherries; medium-bodied, dry, savoury complex flavour of blackcurrant, raspberry and cherries carried on lively acidity; firmly structured with dusty tannins. (90)

For more reviews of current releases, see my Reviews page. The password is drinkme

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