We paired this with a Chicken Parmesan, heavy on the cheese and a Cesar salad. J.Lohr has always been a go to wine, both this and the Cabernet. The Chardonnay is also excellent.
The Merlot is a very smooth, dry wine and very soft on the palate. It has major oak, vanilla and chocolate notes. You can pretty much pair it with anything.
You have likely noticed that we are big on California wines, and with good reason. They are usually fairly light, yet bold with strong berry and vanilla hints prevalent. They are reasonably priced, this one in the mid 20’s. I would recommend this wine for any type of occasion, even (especially?) just having a glass. We rate it 4.1 of 5 stars.
PS: For some reason The BC price was 16 cents lower than the average on Vivino. SHHSHH, don’t let them know.
This wine qualifies as one of our go to varieties. We’ve been opening this one since 2010, or maybe earlier. Very consistent and bursting with more flavour that your average Pinot. Major cherry and berries in the palate, also a bit oaky. Extremely smooth and has a sweetness to it as well. Easy to drink and pairs favourably with most dishes. We recently had it with a maple chipotle pork tenderloin and it worked very well. We also enjoy it with salmon dishes. Highly recommend, a 4.3 on our 5 scale. Our tip to you is drink it from a Pinot glass, you will notice the difference immediately when compared to a regular red wine glass.
Here’s a link to guide you to some perfect glasses.
In conclusion, the price, Vivino notes as an average price 19.75. In British Columbia, 24 bucks. They sure like to gouge you here.
Speaking of Vivino, this is a great app, and available on all platforms. Take a picture of the label while in the app and voila, you have everything you wanted to know about that wine. They look at you funny in the liquor store, but, hey, why buy bad or overpriced wine.
A workhorse Cabernet with oaky notes and definite hints of blackberry and cherry. Very typical of California Cabernet’s. Reasonably priced, usually in the $15.00 range (unless you live in British Columbia, think $18.00) and suitable for pretty much any meat dish. We enjoyed with home made pizza, lots of cheese. Recommend for the budget conscious among us, I gave it 4 stars of 5.
Chateau Ste Michelle is an American winery, situated in Washington state. The wines from this area are becoming quite well-known and are carving out a name for themselves. The vineyards have been in existence since the repeal of prohibition.
The wine we are reviewing is a 2011 Merlot, purchased at the Real Canadian Liquor Store here in Calgary, and is reasonably price at below $20.00. We paired it with a Montreal spice chicken breast and sweet potato, all off the barbecue, and it was excellent.
To be truthful, I consider this purchase to be a steal and highly recommend it to our friends and readers. Typical of Merlot, it was light and flavorful, with minimal earthiness. A very good pair to the spiced breasts. There are hints of black cherry and some definite spiciness There are many fruit flavors and it has a good finish. In addition to pairing with food, it is very suitable for plain old every day sipping.
For more information on the winery, I have added a few links for you..
Quails’ Gate is a Canadian winery, located in the Okanagan Valley of British Colombia. The wine, a reserve Pinot Noir, approximately $45 CAD. As we usually find for wines from this region, it is very earthy, not something I find desirable in a Pinot. We like our Pinot’s to be very fragrant to the nose and light and flavorful to the tongue. This is my common complaint for wines from BC. Having said that, I would very much recommend this one for a variety of reasons. First, many people prefer the earthiness exhibited by this bottle, so I must disqualify myself from being overly critical, just not my cup of tea so to speak. Second, I have had many wines in this price range that were inferior to this one. Finally, it is a Canadian wine and I must support it just on that alone. You be the judge after you have tried it. I give it a 3 out of 5 on our personal scale, and will stick to the French or California Pinot’s.
Our featured wine on this lovely Wine Wednesday is a 2006 Granacha, Tempranillo & Carinena blend created by the Spanish winery co-op, Grandes Vinos Y Vinedos, S.A in Valencia. Monasterio is a part of this group and have created an excellent wine in this 2006 Reserva. We enjoyed this vintage with a red pepper chicken, which complimented nicely the peppery plum bouquet and palate. An extremely good value at 12.50 CAD. We purchased here in Calgary at the Real Canadian Liquorstore. If there was any downside to this wine, is that is nearing the end of its cellar life. The vintner recommends a cellar of 6-7 years, meaning it is passing ts prime here in 2015. Likely explains the price point.
The 2009 Montecillo Reserva is a Spanish wine, created with their finest Tempranillo grapes. Bodegas Montecillo has been creating fine wines since 1874. The label says it pairs well with vegetables and stews, which worked for us as we were eating Chinese. It paired up quite well at that. The wine is full bodied with definite aromas of oak and berries. It is reasonably priced $18 – $22 CAD and is available at most wine stores we’ve been in. We usually buy at the Real Canadian Liquorstore as it is normally the best value. If the 18-22 is a bit pricey, we have also enjoyed their red label version, which is in the 13 to 15 buck range, and still a good buy.