Fast Facts:
Bottled 2009
Origin: Canada, VQA Ontario VQA, Pelee Island 
Bottle size: 750
13% Alc/Vol.

Neither Gamay Noir, nor Zweigelt are typical varietals found in most regions. These understated grapes are unsung heroes in the world of wine. Full-bodied, tannic, in-your-face reds are the name of the game when you talk about Zweigelt. The origins of this varietal date back to only 1922 when Austrian viticulturist Fritz Zweigelt combined other dark grapes to make this unique species.

Zweigelt on its own is very much a mouthful. Its acidity is quite low and its tannin structure quite high, which makes this a wine to lay down. The Gamay Noir partner bring in a mouth-cleansing acidity that keeps this wine very round and quite delicate in some aspects. The acidity helps break the pucker and helps rush the mouth-feel right along. This turns a couple of rather uninspired wines into a whole experience on the palate.

Aromas of blackcurrent and raspberry can be had on the nose, the taste is very similar with dark berry and light oak. Obviously this tannin rich behemoth has been cellared in oak casks to help break it down and this has added a slight buttery taste on the finish. The structure of this wine makes it a workhorse on the dinner table, capable of standing up to the heartiest steak dinner and yet it's subtleties make me confident it would pare well with a lighter rubbed pork as well.

Pelee island is the warmest growing region in Canada, and incidentally it's also the most southern point in the whole country. This is a huge benefit for the growers who can make use of a longer growing season to ripen these warm-climate loving grapes in a country known for snow and polar-bears!

Want to buy and lay? This is a great wine to hide in the cellar only to be broken out on a special occasion. These bottles are going to stand up to another 3 or 4 years of chillen-out, which makes this 12 dollar wine an absolute bargain! Buy a case and forget about them in the good times, break'em out in the bad for a reminder that no matter how hard things get, life is still woven with awesome!

Recommended to those who sip whisky and scotch on the rocks, and those who can handle an upper-cut in a glass. This wine features a flying sugar-glider on it's label, but in my opinion it should be a ragging moose! The wine is not a pungent Merlot, but for a softee it's quite the kick. I can honestly say, for a heavy red, the acidity really brings this one around and makes it fruity and light on the finish. It's sort of like being in a fight with George Forman... not the young one though. This wine will through you a punch, but then turn around and serve you a lovely fat-free grilled burger while wearing your grandma's apron. 

I'm just saying, it's got a soft side... 

Cheers to Pelee Island, proving Canada can produce the heavy hearty reds right along side our delicate Rieslings and Icewines!



Fast Facts:
Bottled 2008
Origin: Canada, VQA Ontario VQA (Beamsville, Niagara Region)
Bottle size: 750
11.5% Alc/Vol.

The area from which this wine originates is a very special part of the Niagara Bench in Ontario. The awkwardly north-facing slope of the Niagara Escarpment is home to many wineries, such as East Dell. Located on rolling hills are home to many unique species of flora and fauna and the East Dell winery is proud to call it home.

This particular wine, the Summer Rosé, is an iconic wine in the ED line-up. An easy sipping rosé wine with very little tannin-educed pucker and a good amount of sweetness. This wine suffers slightly from a lack of acidity that can make the taste build up on the palate leaving a sweet lingering note in very cull of your gullet. Drink this one young and it will keep its dry and fruity character, otherwise it's sweetness may become tart if cellared. 

For this reason it is recommended to drink this wine at the lowest possible temperature and with light snacks. This wine, by the way, pairs very nicely with mildly spiced dishes of fish or chicken, particularly with use of honey BBQ sauces. 

The most appealing aspect of this sipper must be said to be its aroma. A subtle, yet invigorating scent of strawberry with a hint of rose petal makes this wine a great summer-time, back-patio drink. At 11.5% alcohol per volume this wine packs a bit more of a punch than your Bacardi Breezers so remember, sip slowly.

I very much recommend this wine to anyone with an intolerance for heavy red wines. An outstanding example of what a Rosé wine should be, this one makes the buy-again and again list. Best of all, this bottle is sold in Canada for about 11 bucks, what a steal!

Cheers to chilled wines with chill people, 

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Fast Facts:
Bottled 2007
Origin: France; Labouré-Roi
Bottle size: 750
12% Alc/Vol.

So this is a brilliant little Syrah, or for the Aussie-lovers Shiraz, from the Bourgogne region (That's the burgondy region for the anglos). The wine presents itself with the typical plum colour one would anticipate from a resonable young Syrah; the hue is slightly rusty and definitely worthy of being called burgundy. On the nose I would say it's a rather understated scent. Not terribly ripe and mostly scented of blackcurrant and dark berries with a hint of oak and an almost Port aroma.

2007 was a smashing year for Niagara and NewWorld wine, very typical for French wines.
The mouth-feel is a bit puckery with light tannins; the acidity is low to medium and the finish is cleared up with a mouthwatering after-effect. Sugars are low for a young wine but indicative of a Vin de Pays D'Oc style. This wine would likely not hold up to any more cellaring and should be consumed shortly after purchase. If served at anything below 8deg.C. expect the wine to lose its sweetness and present itself as much more acidic.