Friday Sips

'Spanning The Globe'
Today July 7 from 1:30 - 6:30
Drop by today to sample through a selection of flavorful wines that span the globe. No ski jumping events, just good Cabernet Franc, Rose, Spanish Red and Verdicchio.

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$26.99 BTL./$323.88 CASE

Well-traveled and well trained, Norman Hardie has learned his craft at some of the most impressive Domaines around the world. From Evesham Wood in Oregon, Pousse D’Or and Potel in Burgundy, Central Otago in New Zealand and Au Bon Climat in California, as well as starting out as a sommelier in Toronto, this cat gained immense experience when he decided to break out on his own. Searching for soils that he loved, in 2001, he realized that the clay and limestone with high calcium contents like those in Chablis, some portions of the Cote D’Or in Burgundy and parts of the Loire Valley were sitting right in his back yard in Ontario’s Prince Edward County. Norm also makes wines from the Niagara region from purchased grapes as well which is where this particular wine is from.

100% Cabernet Franc from Ontario’s Niagara region on the southwestern corner of Lake Ontario, this Cabernet Franc shows the real potential of the area. When sampling it last week, I was trying to decide where it would be placed. Maybe not Chinon but in a Saumur or Anjou tasting, it certainly could hold its own alongside some of the finest from those areas. Laden with red raspberry, warm granitic spice, red licorice and tinges of jasmine, this is absolutely dry, pure and red to the bone. Dark, haunting tones come as the wine opens and move into a bright, minerally finish. Sneaky structure allows this wine to pair with so many types of cuisines. I can see it going with chicken thighs with mushrooms, Camembert cheese, duck breast, Vietnamese beef dishes or breaded pork chops. Drink now and over the next 6-8 years.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

From our main man Albert Jane, he who happens to be the Catalan mind behind Acustic Celler. Albert’s family also has the Penedes estate of Jane Ventura and when his father passed, Albert inherited Mas Vilella and started his own Penedes project there. We featured the white wine earlier this year and we are very thrilled to offer his stellar red. A non-appellation wine, mostly because Albert really doesn’t care about appellations of denominacions. His aim for Autocton is to blend native varietals from exciting vineyards to produce wines that are both embracing and have ample intrigue.

The Vi Negre is 80% Sumoll (a Catalan red grape almost facing extinction before a recent revival) and 20% Ull de Llebre (Catalan Tempranillo) from very old vines and reveals both warmth and terroir. Red cherry, smoked coffee, pepper and plenty of turned earth aromas follow through to a texture that is engaging yet revealing a wild side. Finishing very assertively, drink this vastly undervalued red over the next 4-6 years, especially with a Mediterranean-inspired pork dish.

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$14.99 BTL./$179.88 CASE

The terroir differences between this Loire Valley rose and previous pink offerings that we have recently offered from Southern France are evident from the first moment that you bring the glass to your nose.

Chinon's limestone soils and 100% Cabernet Franc scream out on the 2016 which teems with prominent scents of raspberry and hawthorn along with underlying minerality and fine herbs. Vinous yet very poised texture, not only is this a pleasurable Rose, it also takes on a serious tone that will allow it to pair with a variety of cuisines. In the mouth, there is lots of movement, depth and complexity with a very expressive, illuminating finish that pleasantly lasts for minutes after the wine is swallowed. If you are a fan of the finest rose wines, then this one will be a must-have. Try this one with grilled tuna or swordfish.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

It is always difficult just to say who is best in any given wine-producing area, but there are always exceptions and Bucci is one of them. When it comes to Verdicchio and the Le Marches region, Bucci's Classico is better than just about anyone's Riserva! A small producer of 8,000 cases of three different wines, the 2015 Verdicchio Classico is all about the sea, this outstanding white wine is a tremendous match with anything that swims.

What sets Bucci atop the heap of producers is their signature complexity and acute sense of detail obtained purely by perfect work in the vineyard and without the use of oak. Notes of crisp and fresh honeydew melon, tangerine and anise gently balance the steely piercing minerality, wet rock and seashell aromas. Served blind, we would have guess that this wine was grown in Kimmeridgien soil (what you find in Chablis and Sancerre) and is this that brings intense freshness and an undeniable sense of earth. One other thing, this cuvee can age nicely for 5-7 years from vintage date.