Monday, April 15, 2024
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Tables turned on me…


by Mark Cochrane

This year the tables were turned on me when my family got together for the annual wine tasting at my brother’s cottage. Instead of me selecting the wines for the tasting, they conspired to give me an impromptu blind wine tasting. Three wines were selected and kept hidden away until the tasting. I could ask only one question about the wine and then had to guess the varietal, country/appellation and the vintage. The pressure was on after the first pour and I could almost feel their anticipation of a “swing and a miss” when I was ready to name the wine. It was tough going but after extensive sampling (and more sampling) I was able to identify 2 out of the 3 wines.

2013 – Chateau St Michelle  – Columbia Vally, Washington

Chateau_Ste_MichelleA fruit forward wine from Washington State. There were some substantial tannins to the get through but after a few sniffs and sips I had it narrowed down to California or Washington state.

I would highly recommend this wine as it’s a good example of a full bodied Cabernet Sauvignon.

LCBO – $20.95 (269357)

Available at Carleton Place and Stittsville LCBO stores

2013 – Ghost Pines Merlot  – California

Ghost_Pine_MerlotMy wife fooled me on this one as I’m not a big Merlot fan. It’s not that I don’t like Merlot. It just doesn’t stand out like other wines like Shiraz with it’s spice or the cigar box aroma of a Cabernet Sauvignon or the earthiness of a Malbec. The opaque colour with mocha and cherry flavours should have helped but I struggled identifying this wine.

LCBO – $18.95 (454876)

Available at Carleton Place and Stittsville LCBO stores

2010 – Campo Viejo Rioja Reserva – Rioja, Spain

Campo_ViejoYou could clearly see the age of this wine when you looked at the watery edge in the glass. The Rioja Reserva still had good tannic structure and a very distinctive cherry flavour with some vanilla at the end.

LCBO – $17.95 (137810)

Available at Carleton Place and Stittsville LCBO stores


Mark Cochrane

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