Trius Rosé 2012

This is a dry rose.  Not a cavity generating white zinfandel.
Made using juice from: Shiraz, Merlot and Cabernet Franc.  Alcohol/Vol 12.1%
At a Glance
Taste raspberry, strawberry, cherry
Smell strawberry, raspberry, citrus
Food salads, vegetables
Sweetness dry
Price $15.95
LCBO# 341743
Score

 

Ruffino Chianti DOCG 2012

I was pleasantly surprised by this entry level chianti from the large producer Ruffino.
Overall this is a good value chianti for the price and availability. 13.0% Alcohol/Vol.
Tip: balloon glass
At a Glance
Taste raspberry, vanilla, cherry
Smell strawberry, black cherry, sweet oak
Food italian, cheese
Sweetness extra dry
Price $14.95
LCBO# 1743
Score

 

Barefoot Merlot

I’ve had better bottles from Barefoot.  This one is a pretty simple medium bodied off dry weekday merlot.  Give their Shiraz a go.
Alcohol Content: 13.5%
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste cherry, vanilla, chocolate
Smell dark berry, cherry, raspberry
Food bbq lunch
Sweetness off dry
Price $9.95
LCBO# 53991
Score

Henry of Pelham – Sibling Rivalry Red 2009

A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from the 2007 vintage
The white outshines the red
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste dark berry, oak, plum
Smell blackberry, raspberry, oak
Food burgers, bbq
Sweetness off dry
Price $13.95
LCBO# 126151
Score

Hardys Bankside Shiraz 2009

A great Aussie shiraz for the price, I can recommend buying a couple for the rack.
Works as a nice benchmark shiraz for beginners and intermediate wine lovers.
Tip: Stock up on a few
At a Glance
Taste dark currant, medium berry, warm spice
Smell raspberry, leather, dark chocolate
Food red meat, bbq, ribs
Sweetness dry
Price $14.95
LCBO# 436022
Score

Colio Lake and River Series Cabernet Franc 2008

Franc is harder to find than it should be, this bottle is medium light, food friendly and fruit forward – a good intro to theis varietal.
Made from 100% Cabernet Franc. Alcohol Content: 12.2%
Tip: balloon glass
At a Glance
Taste strawberry, raspberry, herbaceous
Smell raspberry, strawberry, pepper
Food pizza, burger
Sweetness dry
Price $10.95
LCBO# 183079
Score

Folonari Valpolicella 2009

Even though there isn’t a lot going on in the glass, it’s not a bad choice at all for casual bbq food. Not sure if this is really LCBO #828 or what I have listed below, the price difference is 4 more dollars.
This valpolicella is a blend of 65% Corvina, 25% Rondinella, 10% Molinara
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste cherry, oak
Smell cherry, oak, raspberry
Food pizza, burgers
Sweetness dry
Price $8.00
LCBO# 6254
Score

Voga Quattro 2006

At first glance this bottle looks like something shampoo would come it, but once on the table with the cap off, it feels kind of futuristic. Overall this is a pretty good wine, a little bit more than the lower end reds but it’s worth the extra 3.50. Overall it’s a dry, medium bodied wine with soft acidity and ripe tannins.
4-Way Blend (quatto means four in Italian): Merlot, Shiraz, Pinot Noir and Cabernet.  Surprisingly, the pinot really does shine through.
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste strawberry, spice, light oak
Smell red berry, raspberry, white pepper
Food veal marsala
Sweetness dry
Price $13.95
LCBO# 78048
Score

Rosehall Run Pinot Noir Cuvée County 2007

Making pinot noir is tough (it’s not called the heartbreak grape for nothing). Making a GOOD pinot noir is tougher. Making a GREAT pinot noir for under $20 is what Rosehall Run has done with their 2007 VQA vintage.
While drinking you’ll notice that for a medium-light red, this pinot has a long finish. Coupled with the balanced acidity it also acts as a palate cleanser making this vintage easy to drink for wine aficionados and to be aficionados alike. Enjoy this wine slightly chilled and on the first day you open it. While drinking now, the winemaker assures it will developer further over the next five years.
Tip: Release Date – March 1, 2009
At a Glance
Taste raspberry, vanilla, mild oak
Smell raspberry, strawberry, lees
Food duck, game
Sweetness dry
Price $18.95
LCBO# 0
Score

Farnese Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2007

Farnese comes out with another great value wine, this time it’s a Montepulciano d’Abruzzo.  This vintage is a medium-full bodied wine that’s fruity but still has those typical Italian tannins to maintain it’s structure.
Post a comment if you detect a hint of licorice in the palate like I did.
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste dark ripe berry, oak, raisin
Smell raspberry, vanilla, raisin
Food salami, crown roast, bbq
Sweetness dry
Price $7.55
LCBO# 621912
Score

Cline Zinfandel 2006

This best zinfandels come from California, so it’s no surprise that this Californian delivers. What is surprising is that Cline has done it’s customers such a favour by making this bottle so affordable. This is the second time Cline has released an overachiever at a great price, see their Syrah here.
This zin has a full mouthfeel, smooth tannins, lots of dark fruit and finishes with subtle spice and vanilla. Exactly what you should expect from a zinfandel.
Tip: grab a few bottles as this can be cellared for up to 4 years
At a Glance
Taste black cherry, spice, vanilla
Smell black cherry, raspberry, vanilla
Food pork ribs, pepperoni calzone
Sweetness dry
Price $12.90
LCBO# 489278
Score

Chantovent Shiraz 2001

Cellaring the right bottles and opening them at peak is a great experience.  I’ve had this bottle in my rack for 3 or 4 years, and over the years it’s conjured up an very complex yet balanced nose.
As good as the feeling is, it’s not as fun when you find out you can’t get your hands on any more (at least until you visit the winery in the South of France)
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste ripe dark berries, oak
Smell raspberry, plum, vanilla
Food burgers, roast beef
Sweetness dry
Price $11.05
LCBO# 589457
Score

Pasion 4 Merlot 2006

I will admit that I often check out the back of the bottle to get a sense of whats in the bottle. While you don’t want to take too much of what the marketing department said to heart, you can usually get some insight. If you want a fiction story go to a library and borrow a book.
While the back of this bottle certainly had great expectations it did fall a little short (and thin). The wine was good and non-offensive but a little something was missing in the middle giving it that thin mouth feel. But still got a high value marks.
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste raspberry, plum, chocolate
Smell rhubarb pie, raspberry, vanilla
Food grilled meat and roast veg
Sweetness dry
Price $11.95
LCBO# 59287
Score
Pasion 4 Merlot 2006

Hope Estate Shiraz 2006

Picked up this wine on a Friday night after a long and exhausting work week. It was one of several that made it in to the basket somewhere between some inexpensive Sangiovese and some white stuff. Talk about a rose between two thorns.
The moment the cork came out of the bottle I knew something was up, which immediately prompted a call to Chuck telling him to get to the liquor store. This is a very lively and expressive wine, full of fruit and spices with a nice bold middle and easy finish. It had all the hallmarks of Shiraz but with a something a little more interesting that kept me coming back for more. 6 bottles will me making their way in to my collection for sure.
Tip: I’m a very picky Shiraz drinker, loved this one.
At a Glance
Taste wild strawberry, wild raspberry, pepper
Smell black cherry, raspberry, plum
Food mediterranean, bbq
Sweetness extra dry
Price $16.95
LCBO# 59998
Score
Hope Estate Shiraz