Saturday, January 5, 2013

Only in BC you say? Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2012 wines readily available!

Each year The Wine Spectator magazine posts its Top 100 Wines of the Year - and in most jurisdictions, those bottles immediately go on the endangered species list and disappear shortly thereafter.

In the wine jungle, the successful hunters are those who strike quickly and silently.

And count The Wine Barbarian as one of those!

Fortunately, I'm also willing to share - knowledge that is, not my wine!

BC government Liquor Stores currently have quite a few of the Top 100 Wines still available.  You may have to travel a little further and hunt a little more diligently than a simple visit to your local store, but you will be amply rewarded for your efforts.  And you may find some of them in BC private wine stores as well.

I have kindly linked each wine title below to its BC Liquor Store URL - click on it and you can find where these bottles are stashed anywhere in BC.  

But remember that it's always wise to call in advance because the website for consumers like us is about 48 hours behind reality - store consultants can tell you better what the situation is.

The Top 100 are NOT either the highest scoring or the highest priced wines tasted in 2012 by the Wine Spectator, by the way - they are chosen by editors based on this criteria:  

"In 2012, our list was selected from more than 17,000 new releases our editors rated in our independent blind tastings. More than 5,500 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."

Here are some of the key Top 100 Wines currently available in BC:

#16 - 96 points - Le Vieux Donjon - Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2010 - France

BC price: $59.94  [US price $66]  

Only 109 bottle left in the province but that's a miracle for a 96 point wine at that price! The Spectator talks about juniper, bay leaf, black current, blackberry and roasted plum flavours in a wine drinking from 2015 to 2030.

#30 - 92 points - Schild Estate Barossa Shiraz 2010 - Australia 

BC Price $29.99 [US price $20]

There are 1602 bottles listed available on the BC Liquor Stores website but in late December they had almost disappeared, so don't delay!

This is a bargain wine even if the last great vintage in 2008 only cost $20 and was also a Top 100 pick.  It's a big Barossa shiraz - what more do you need to know?  The screwtop makes it even harder to resist immediate drinking - and it is highly quaffable already - but should last nicely till 2018.

#87 - 90 points - Concha y Toro - Marques de Casa Concha Limari Valley Chardonnay - Chile

BC price - $19.99 [US price $18]

A fabulous white that's always on my personal Top 100 wine list because it is reasonably priced and super tasty every vintage - but it's also on the Spectator list!

They say it has "pineapple, citrus and spice notes...juicy acidity and creamy texture" - I say open this chardonnay tonight and then go buy lots more!

So that's all for now but there are still more Top 100 Wine Spectator 2012 wines in BC Liquor stores - stay tuned to The Wine Barbarian for another posting in the near future - after I've grabbed my share first!