Tag Archives: wine

Something new every day

29 Oct

20111029-201044.jpg

This lovely Montsant wine taught me something new today. One of its main components (40%) is Mazuelo. What’s Mazuelo? I had to look it up, myself. Turns out Mazuelo is a synonym of Carignan. So there you go. Something new.

Bula 2009, Montsant D.O.
Mazuelo, Grenache, Syrah
available in BC early 2012, ~$20

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A great Malbec, if…

27 Oct

20111027-004317.jpgHumberto Canale Estate Malbec 2008
Alto Valle del Río Negro, Patagonia, Argentina

So, this is a new (to me) Malbec from the most southerly wine-growing region in Argentina. Patagonia lies more than 990 miles (1600 kms) south of the much more famous Mendoza and is a considerably cooler climate than the major regions to the north. In the early 20th century, Humberto Canale imported vine cuttings from Bordeaux and established the first commercial winery in the region^.

I found myself with a bottle of Humberto Canale Estate Malbec 2008 from that most southerly region and wondered about how it might differ from wines from its northern Argentine neighbours. When I finally got around to opening it, I found a complex, nuanced wine with blackberry, cocoa, mint, smoked meat, and a host of other intriguing flavours. The profile and structure reminds me more of premium high-altitude Mendoza wines than the ubiquitous fleshy, sweet-fruit reds that currently flood our wine shops. So, is this a great-value wine? Good question, as I no longer have pricing info. I’ll get back to you on that, but for now, I will say that this is either an excellent sub-$20 wine or a less-exciting buy, it’s value inversely related to price.

BC Pinot Blanc

26 Oct

20111026-233412.jpgPeller Estates Family Series Pinot Blanc 2009
VQA Okanagan Valley, BC

BC makes good Pinot Blanc. Many Okanagan Valley Pinot Blanc wines are of very good quality and well-priced, relative to other white wines from BC and elsewhere. I would like to see greater focus and emphasis on this variety. Winemakers should aim for ripe fruit, balanced acidity and moderate alcohol. Tonight’s example, Peller Estates Family Series Pinot Blanc 2009, displays decent fruit-acid balance, but with pronounced (14%) alcohol. There are better examples, but at $12.99, this should be a popular choice.

Fun with FAOSTAT

23 Mar


Recently, I’ve discovered a great new way to waste time on the Internet. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has a Statistics site that allows users to access all sorts of great information on food production, from crops and livestock to food prices and supply.  For fun, I crunched some numbers to look at recent wine production in some important wine-producing countries.  Google Spreadsheets helped with the chart.

I’ve looked at production data before and I’m always a bit shocked that Australia ranks so low. Aussie wines are definitely over-represented on shelves in BC wine stores, relative to that country’s production.  Chile, too, tends to get much more shelf space than higher-producing nations South Africa and Germany.

I find this interesting. You may not.

Wine Marketing Win: Puntiapart

2 Oct

long jump wine

http://lavinyeta.es/puntiapart_en.html
http://www.thedieline.com/blog/2009/09/studio-spotlight-elhombredelalata.html

puntiapart2

New Zealand’s Wine Glut

12 Feb

new-zealand-wine-pure-discovery

A bumper crop in 2008 has resulted in an oversupply of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc and other Kiwi wine.  As prices fall, local producers look to renew a national focus on quality to help reduce tonnage in 2009 and beyond.  Exports are also on the rise, especially to Australia, in an attempt to spread the glut around.  Here’s hoping BC wine lovers benefit from expanded selection and lower prices in the New Zealand section of our local wine shops.  For more on this topic, check out the stories below.


from TVNZ:

It’s a good time for wine drinkers to stock up their cellars as an oversupply of Sauvignon Blanc forces producers to slash prices…

from The National Business Review:

As the countdown to the 2009 harvest gets underway, some vineyards are still feeling the hangover from last year’s vintage as a global glut and lower prices begin to bite…

from Bloomberg.com:

New Zealand’s annual wine exports rose 19 percent to a record, boosted by a bigger grape harvest and rising demand, according to the industry’s national organization…