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Alan Kerr’s Vintages May 28th Release Notes

Hello, here are some notes on several of the wines being released on Saturday May 28th. The release features wines from the “Viva Veneto” and there are some solid Californian wines in the secondary release, the “Judgement Call”.

The latter is honouring the wine tasting of 1976 known as the Judgment of Paris. A wine competition organized on 24 May 1976 by Steven Spurrier, who, at the time was a wine merchant in the city.

French judges carried out two blind tasting comparisons: one of first rate Chardonnay from California and Burgundy and the other, red wines from Bordeaux and Cabernet Sauvignon from California.

Much to their dismay and disbelief, the Californian wines rated best in each category. This was unheard of back then as France was regarded as being the foremost producer of the world’s premium wines.

The American vintners beating the French at their own game is akin to Leicester City wining the EPL. That too was an achievement that most footie fans would have believed impossible.

The repercussions of the Paris Tasting were far-reaching as it seriously raised interest levels for California’s wines in both domestic and international markets. And furthermore, The Judgement of Paris happens to be this year’s theme for the twenty fifth anniversary picnic of MoCool. The date for this extemporary event is August 13th and sign up information is soon to be released. This release showcases current wines from some of the original players who put California onto the world wine map.

WINES OF THE MONTH

453647 WILLIAM HILL CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2013 North Coast, California $21.95
Spicy and leather notes with hints of camp coffee and chocolate strawberry candy. It is fat, loaded with plump blackcurrant flavour, it has good concentration, but the acids are low. Level of tannin is minimal making it fine for current consumption. Find this wine

273748 BORSAO TRES PICOS GARNACHA 2014 Campo de Borja, Spain $19.95
Plenty of heady fleshy fruit, some mineral and slate aromas, notes of coal dust and cola. Heaps of blackberry and blackcurrant flavours, meaty and juicy, elevated level of toasty oak. Good acidity, full of flavour and fun to drink. Find this wine

WINES FROM VENETO

451716 SARTORI L’APPASSIONE 2013 Delle Venezie Rosso $17.95
Tight at first, some raspberry and plum aromas emerge and are soon joined by notes of clove and wet forest floor. Some sweetness on the mid palate, flavours of red fruit, strawberry and raspberry do show well. A cola sweetness on the finish, but the acids balance it nicely. Find this wine

085217 SARTORI AMARONE DELLA VALPOLICELLA 2011 $39.95
The big brother to the previous wine also reveals little at first, but layers of dark chocolate, black cherry and redcurrant soon surface. There is a mocha note on the palate, with plum and currant, some sweetness and some strong tannin levels. Find this wine

134544 MONTE DEL FRA BARDOLINO 2014 $14.95
Violets, cake spice, sweet red candy, redcurrants and black raspberry are all part of the vibrant nose. Plush plum and red currant fruit, great acidity, some mineral and earthy flavours too on this decent valued wine. Find this wine

023259 TOMMASI RAFAUL VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO SUPERIORE 2013 $18.95
Straw aromas with petrol, slate, plum and prune, simple palate, light styled, clean, decent acidity but, but short on the finish. Find this wine

451666 CANTINE DI ORA RIPASSO VALPOLICELLA SUPERIORE 2013 $22.95
Super ripeness, dried red fruits, plum, black sweet cherry, toffee and caramel fill the nose, but the palate is surprisingly drier in comparison. It is quite tight, but plum, star anise and mocha flavours do begin to show. Juicy, great acidity and easy to drink albeit the acidity on the finish is pronounced. Find this wine

974402 PROVOLO CAMPOTORBIAN RIPASSO VALPOLICELLA SUPERIORE 2011 $19.95
Chalky and dusty, dark fruit, wet earth, cave air, Asian spice and dried currants. A pleasing sweetness on the palate, lovely blueberry and plum flavours combine with hints of black cherry and cola. Find this wine

324137 MASI COSTASERA RISERVA AMARONE DELLA VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO 2009 $69.95
Blueberry, blackberry and currant aromas have a backdrop of espresso grounds, walnuts and dried fruit. The palate is ripe and chewy showing black raspberry, milk chocolate, black licorice and black tea flavours. Some tannins do suggest time, but it is tasty now. Find this wine

WINES FROM THE JUDGEMENT CALL FEATURE

701748 CHATEAU MONTELENA CHARDONNAY 2014 Napa Valley $75.95
The lovely aromas of pear, apple, melon and sweet butter are enticing. Oak treatment is minimal, a touch of clove blends superbly with the pear and mineral notes. Perfect ripeness, well balanced with perfect acidity. There is a touch of smoke on the long and pure finish. Find this wine

346304 GRGICH HILLS ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2013 Napa Valley $67.95
Another Napa Chardonnay that is showing well. Its nose is full of baking spices, with apple, pineapple, crème brulee and apricot. Rounder and fuller than the Montelena, the concentration of fruit is unreal. It delivers a whack of super ripe pear and apple flavours with a nice note of mandarin and mineral on the finish. Find this wine

205500 HEITZ CELLAR CHARDONNAY 2014 Napa Valley $49.95
Brassy and rich, lovely aromas of peach, nectarine, pineapple and banana bread lathered with butter. Impeccable balance on the palate, lovely tree fruit flavours roll around and the wine finishes with crisp acidity and the right amount of oak. Not sure which of the Chardonnays I prefer. All are really good, well-crafted and those days of heavy handed oaking seems to be a thing of the past. Find this wine

904532 FREEMARK ABBEY CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2012 Napa Valley $54.95
Extremely concentrated, dusty and inky, dark fruit looms from the glass until a faint whiff of cork appears and gets stronger and stronger and stronger. Bloody shame! Find this wine

708982 STAG’S LEAP WINE CELLARS ARTEMIS CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2012 Napa Valley $69.95 Napa Valley
Toffee, creamy with a note of Cadbury’s Caramilk bar and layers of dusty blackberry and blackcurrant fruit. The fruit has good ripeness on the palate, there are plenty of dusty and slightly aggressive tannins that do need time to settle. The acids are fresh and lively and oak is gentle. Find this wine

325779 CLOS DU VAL CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2013 Napa Valley $59.95
Lovely blend of black cherry, black raspberry, dried currants, wet stones, spice, black pepper and chalk. Equally good on first impression on the palate, the fruit shines, but dusty tannins take over and shut the whole production down. Should be a seriously good bottle of wine once the tannins level out. Find this wine

ONTARIO

189183 FIELDING RED CONCEPTION 2013 Niagara Peninsula $18.95
Straw/hay barnyard aromas at first then blackcurrant, cigar leaf, caramel and mocha appear. The palate has a touch of lead pencil, some mineral, but the fruit flavours are quite restrained. Find this wine

067645 MEGALOMANIAC BIGMOUTH MERLOT 2012 Niagara Peninsula $24.95
Lots of black raspberry, mocha and sweet spice, the palate is plush, filled with ripe strawberry, black fruit, the texture is creamy and tannins are soft. Nice spicy note on the finish. Find this wine

130989 TAWSE GROWERS BLEND PINOT NOIR 2011 Niagara Peninsula $24.95
A classy pinot noir, showcasing aromas of black cherry, cigar leaf, mineral, clove and cinnamon. Lovely red fruit flavours with a slight strawberry sweetness kept in balance by the lively acidity. Some tannins make their presence known, but a year or two away will take care of them. Find this wine

ITALY

270306 MASSERIE PISARI PRIMITIVO 2013 Salento Rosso $13.95
I was hoping to taste a reasonably priced and tasty Primitivo that would be ideal to sip on whilst smoking ribs on a hot sunny afternoon. This is well priced, but as far as being tasty, it sadly is not. It has some nice dark chocolate, pepper, mocha and black raspberry notes, but the palate has a metallic aftertaste and it is overly tart and acidic. Find this wine

378257 BANFI BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO 2010 $54.95
The aromas of dark fruit, dark chocolate, bright cherry, mandarin and balsa are decent, but the palate has a thick texture that is void of fruit and has a discernibly high degree of alcohol especially on the finish. Find this wine

368910 CARPINETO VINO NOBILE DI MONTEPULCIANO RISERVA 2010 $29.95
The alluring notes of motor oil, black licorice, blackcurrant, saddle leather, star anise and wet forest are interesting. The palate starts out well, it’s boastful, showing off its layers of dark fruit splattered with traces of red currant and licorice root. Then the tannin appears and shuts down the fun. One for the cellar for sure. Find this wine

Cheers
CZ

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