Sara’s Sommelier Selections – Aug 17, 2013

Sara d'Amato

Sara d’Amato

One of the tricks of the sommelier trade is always to have “go-to” selections on your wine list. These are wines that are unique and memorable, fit into that “sweet spot” price range and also pair well with a variety of foods. Often these are also wines that give you the opportunity to spout your knowledge about a particular region or trend. This week’s release delivers an abundance of value in the Old World and elegance in the New World – exactly the type of “go-to” wines sought after by Sommeliers. Having a selection of these wines at home assures that you’ll always have something that works with a variety of food and is also a unique conversation starter.

Terredora Loggia Della Serra Greco Di Tufo 2011
Campania, Italy, ON $17.95, QC $18.45

Terredora Loggia Della Serra Greco Di Tufo 2011

The greco grape hails from Greece (hence the name) but has been cultivated in southern Italy, most notably in Campania, for centuries. It is one of the few DOCG designated whites which is an indication of its exceptional quality. General characteristics include seductive aromatics, vibrant acids and substantial body. Consistently a great value, Terradorra’s estate grown 2011 Greco Di Tufo is swoon-worthy with notes of lemon zest, lemongrass, nectarine, white pepper, earth and brine. A real stunner! Food Match: Vongole pasta (with clams in a white wine sauce)

José Pariente Verdejo 2012
Rueda, Spain, ON $16.95

José Pariente Verdejo 2012

From central Spain, located between the two powerhouse regions – that of Toro and Ribera del Duero, Ruedo is most distinctly renown for its Verdejo – fresh, vibrant, mineral intensive but made approachable often by a touch of tropical fruit. Verdejo is a go-to varietal for many a sommelier because of its versatility with food. Like Champagne, it tends to pair well with everything from ceviche to roast pork. This example is particularly riveting and delivers exceptional intrigue for the price. Food match: From ceviche to roast pork

Château Prieure Canteloup 2009
Bordeaux, France, ON $18.85

Château Prieure Canteloup 2009

Outstanding Bordeaux in this price point does not come along very often and so I would be remiss in not flagging it – Sommeliers are always on the lookout for such values. The recent wave of higher quality Bordeaux can perhaps be attributed to two excellent vintages that are currently on the market – those of 2009 and 2010. The former tends to deliver wines that are riper and more accessible yet classically built. The later vintage tends to be more tightly knit and age-worthy. From the right bank of Bordeaux, this field blend is heavy on the merlot making up two-thirds of the assemblage. Stock up while you can! Food match: Mustard crusted pork chops

Tournon Mathilda Victorian Shiraz 2010
Victoria, Australia, ON $19.95, QC $21.55, BC $19.99 (LTO)

Tournon Mathilda Victorian Shiraz 2010

From the revered Rhone producer Chapoutier, the Tournon is the estate’s recent venture into the cooler climate of Victoria, Australia. ‘Mathilda’ is the daughter of Michel Chapoutier and nods to a more feminine, elegant style of shiraz, and as you might expect, feels both Old world and New. A good cool climate syrah is a staple in the toolbox of a sommelier as its lower tannins and spicy character make it both a versatile food match and memorable in the sense that it often changes a guest’s preconceived notions about the varietal. Food match: Grilled lamb with fennel slaw

Elk Cove Pinot Noir 2011
Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA, ON $37.95, QC $37.75

Elk Cove Pinot Noir 2011

Elk Cove is one of Oregon’s oldest wineries and produces wines exclusively in the pinot family (i.e. pinot noir, pinot gris and pinot blanc) which happen to be ideally suited the climate and soil of the northern Willamette Valley.  The 2011 pinot noir is incredibly elegant and ethereal in nature, modern but with true pinot character and impressive complexity. A truly great pinot noir can be an experience you’ll never forget – exactly what a sommelier aspires to deliver. Food match: Cedar plank barbequed salmon

Santé!

Sara

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From the Aug 17, 2013 Vintages release:

Sara’s Sommelier Selections
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