|Quinta do Crasto - 93 points|
|Vincent Girardin - 92 points|
|Cloudy Bay - 92 points|
However, having not one but two blogs - my political Bill Tieleman website - makes life more complicated, since "news of the day" seems to take priority over "wine of the day", sometimes sadly.
Nonetheless, and without a new years resolution, I will do my best to be more wine current.
And to start - here are three truly excellent wines recognized by the Wine Spectator magazine as members of the Top 100 Wines of 2011 - and still available in BC Liquor Stores, as well as in other locations around the globe.
The Top 100 does not comprise the highest rated wines in the world - that would be prohibitively expensive for all but the 1% who occupy their wine cellars with first growth Bordeaux.
Rather, the Wine Spectator explains their criteria this way:
"More than 5,400 of these wines earned outstanding or classic ratings (90 points or higher on Wine Spectator's 100-point scale). We narrowed the list down based on four criteria: quality (represented by score); value (reflected by release price); availability (measured by cases made or imported); and what we call the “X-factor”–the excitement generated by a rising-star producer, a benchmark wine or a significant milestone for a wine region.
But no equation determines the final selections: These choices reflect our editors’ judgment and passion about the wines we tasted."
And so, the wines you can find in BC - there were a few others but I suspect more limited quantities quickly disappeared. I'm happy to say I've tried them all!
First, the 2008 Quinta do Crasto - Douro Reserva, Old Vines - 93 points, ranked #62 - a blockbuster wine from Portugal, one of the most overlooked and underrated wine producing countries in the world.
Too many still think it only produces Port when in fact there are fabulous red wines made there from grapes we don't know, let alone know how to produce.
Listed at US $46 it's actually cheaper in BC at $42.99 and there are over 1,000 bottles available according to the BC Liquor Stores website, which has location details at the link I'e just posted.
The Spectator says: "
I agree but think it will last much longer. I also found a good blackberry bouquet to it.
Second - 2009 Vincent Girardin - Moulin-à-Vent Domaine de La Tour du Bief Clos de la Tour - 92 points and ranked #54 - a mouthful to say and full of good taste!
This wine from the Moulin a Vent appellation in the Beaujolais region of France, and yes, named after a windmill in the region.
It retails for $29.99 at BC Liquor Stores but is in short supply - just 74 bottle left, most in Vancouver. US retail is a touch lower.
The Spectator says: "