Saturday, November 28, 2009

What wines we're drinking this week

Run do not walk to find this excellent Sabor Real tempranillo from Bodegas Campinas - rated at 90 points by wine guru Robert Parker - and available for only $16.99 at BC Liquor stores.

This is a great big juicy wine - not like some softer tempranillos that are delicious but would get beat up by a pork chop, let alone a porterhouse steak.

This smoky, blackberry-rich wine is great with food or on its own.

Coming from Zamora in the relatively unknown Toro region, this is one of the best value wines I've tasted in ages.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Bye-Bye Burgundy - no more disappointing bottles - I'll buy-buy New World pinot noirs instead!

Burgundy bottle fails again - what is wrong with this picture?

It happened again!

I opened a bottle of Burgundy nicely cellared for a few years, popped the cork and got ready for a great wine with a great meal - but I was only half right.

Has this happened to you?

The Burgundy - or Bourgogne - was completely lacking in bouquet, character or anything interesting at all.

But it was expensive! I really don't expect to pay $53 for a wine that fails to deliver the goods.

This one was the 2003 Domaine Doudet-Naudin Savigny Les Beaune Les Guettes 1er Cru. I tasted it at the Vancouver International Playhouse Wine Festival in 2006 and was so impressed a bought a bottle that night.

Now granted, I had been drinking - but given how many I taste in an evening, this one stood out enough that I purchased it.

Unfortunately, this bad Burgogne experience has been repeated several times in past years.

But no more. I am going to resist the siren call of Burgundy and stick to New World pinot noirs - which have not failed me yet.

I highly recommend pinot noir from the Santa Barbara region of California - especially Au Bon Climat, Foxen, Byron, Foley and others - and from New Zealand, especially from the Central Otago region.

I also very much enjoy several BC pinot noirs, including Blue Mountain, Cedar Creek, Quail's Gate and Nk 'Mip Cellars.

BC Liquor Stores and private stores have a good selection - and best of all - it's a lot cheaper than undependable Burgogne!

But if you've had a good pinor noir experience from Burgundy, please let me know - post your good news here - or bad news if you've had the same problems I have.